THIS IS A WORKING VERSION

From 25th Sep 2018 to 31st Dec 2018, I travelled 98 days and roughly 8580km in Xinjiang province.

Everyone travels in their own paces, and for me the last thing I want to do is rushing to all places of interests, take photos, and WOW for what I saw, then left it behind like I had never been there before. When visit a new place I would try to live there for a few days or more, so that I feel less a tourist but more an observer if not a local resident. This post serves as a summary of my whole Xinjiang Trip, which 1) highlights what I have captured; 2) give an overall tips regarding travelling in the region. For more details on each of my destination, there will be separate posts hopefully soon.

First of all, I want to give my special thanks to:

My family and friends who supported my “journey to the west” plan.
Lonely Planet – Xinjiang (only Chinese available) which made my trip so much easier.
All the nice people I have met .

Xinjiang Snapshots

Maybe you have know Xinjiang because of three western explorers (Sven Hedin, Aurel Stein, ) who made great archaeology discoveries in 20th Century on the silk road. Maybe you have heard about this place because the news you read regarding the controversial policies imposed in the region. A few years ago, when Xinjiang would link us on terrorism. Thanks to our governments’ continuous funding on Surveillance system, police / security forces and along with increasing emphasis on economic development, visiting Xinjiang has become a more desirable and popular choice for domestic travelling from last year, while some other popular destinations in China have seen declining tourism figures.

As the largest province in China, and Xinjiang accounts for 1/6 of the country. In the 3 months, I have travelled many distances – it is common to travel a few hundreds kilometres from one city to another; I have crossed many old streets in search of the local traditions; I came across with many people who helped me to unfold this mysterious land; I also tried many delicious local cuisine – I have never ate so much mutton / lamb in my life; I have waiting for many sunsets – which is my favourite thing to do.

Don’t miss the views on the Road

Amazing Landscapes

Museums, World Heritage Sites

People

One of the best things of traveling alone for a long time is I have the chance to interact a lot people, mostly are locals as well as other travellers.

Bazaar

Old Streets

Uighur Specialties

I was kind of worried before my trip that I might not get enough vegetable intake in Xinjiang, which was proved to be completely unnecessary.

Xinjiang Cuisine differs from other parts of China, it features halal food with its taste influenced by North West China region. Nowadays, you can find all kinds of cuisines in Xinjiang, while Uyghur diet is still dominated the region. When we talk about Xinjiang Cuisine, we are actually meaning Uyghur Cuisine, which dominates the food culture in the region.

My favourites:

  • Polu rice

Sunset

Animals

I prefer places where less people travelled / are travelling, I think that’s why I enjoy interacting with whatever I have seen alive, animals or plants. It was one of my great pleasure to meet them as well.

Tips of travelling in Xinjiang

Of course, there a lot more about Xinjiang besides the food, landscape, bazzars, people etc., you have to find that out with your eyes, make conversations with people who are

Language

Transportation

Accommodation

My Suggestions

Xinjiang is not a foreigner-friendly regions because of

  • it is a very sensitive area and foreign identity will makes you less desirable than a Chinese visitors

The blanketed Xinjiang with surveillance makes it the safest region in China (probably on the earth)

Stifling restrictions on their practice of Islam, culture and language, which I don’t know how much would remain in 10, or 20, or 50 years.