Silk Road Facts

the flaming mountainFlaming Mountain

For ever 2,000 years, traders carried products such as silk and tea through the Gansu Corridor to the countries in the west and east. You can follow trade routes that crossed Xinjiang and the rest of China.

A stunning array of scenery: from the mountain peaks near Kashgar to the Flaming Mountains and hot deserts of Xinjiang, to the high mountain lakes and meadows around Urumqi and its Grand Bazaar for shopping. See the parks, mountains and grasslands around the Gansu Corridor, the Yellow River and its sights, and the large city of Xian.

Ancient places, history, and artwork: See Buddhist grottoes, ancient sites, and museums in Xinjiang and along the Gansu Corridor, and see the Terracotta Army, museums, and ancient mausoleums in Xian.

Learn how the cultures of East and West interacted and how Buddhism,Christianity, and Islam arrived China.

Most Popular Sections

Terracotta Army

See our Silk Road tours.

  • Most popular souvenirs and local products: rugs, carpets, souvenirs, textiles, dried fruit and delicacies, Chinese paintings, ceramics, silk
  • Most popular food: raisins, nuts, dairy and fruit products in Xinjiang, Muslim beef noodle soup in Lanzhou, roujiamo (like hamburgers) and shish kabobs in Xi'an.

History

wooden tower of sui dynastywooden tower of the Sui Dynasty
  • ~1000 BC During the Shang Dynasty era, the Yuezhi people in Xinjiang traded jade with the Shang court, and merchants carried the trade goods on early trade routes through the Gansu Corridor.
  • 138 BC Zhang Qian (200–114) started to explore the travel routes between Xi'an and the west for the Han Dynasty (206 BC–220 AD). Silk Road trade ensued.
  • 629 A monk named Xuanzang (602–664) traveled the Silk Road to go to India during the Tang Dynasty.
  • 1269 Marco Polo set off on his journey eastwards.
  • 1271 The Mongols captured the Song Empire. Trade across Eurasia flourished during their reign.
  • Late 20th century: Various Silk Road locations became international tourist attractions.
  • Read more about Silk Road history.

Most famous legend: The monk Xuanzang and his epic journey that became the Journey to the West novel and Monkey King legends.

Geography

  • Significance: the travel routes enabled communication, travel, and trade between cultures and changed Eurasian culture.
  • Tourism: These routes enriched the early empires for 1,400 years, and there are many ancient legacies to see.
  • Provinces crossed: Xinjiang, Gansu, Shaanxi, and Henan
  • Location: From Khunjareb Pass (36.50, 75.25) to Louyang (34.68,112.47)
  • Straight line distance: 3,334 m (2,702 mi)
  • Highest Altitude: Khunjareb Pass 4,693 m (15,397 ft)
Hi, I'm Ruru Zhou
I updated this article on April 8, 2014
See all my travel articles
follow this pageChina Highlights

Questions and Answers About Silk Road Facts

grace 2012-12-01
Show Answer
hi can i visit the silk road i have 6 people commingwith me our bugget is $60 per person lenght of stay2 days tourist would be good

Hi Grace,

Thanks for your enquiry! We are more than happy to arrange a silk road tour for your group of 6 people, a silk road tour can start from Xi'an, Lanzhou or Urumqi depending on your dates and it also includes visits in the whole Xinjiang province. I am not very sure about the length of 2 days of the tour, will you advise more details of the tour so I can propose a tentative itinerary for your group? I look forward to hearing from you again!

Candy Wei replied on 2012-12-04
trinity 2012-10-03
Show Answer
can i see the silk road
Dear Trinity, Yes, we can arrange a tour for you. Please see the details about the tour packages on our website. (Click: http://www.chinahighlights.com/tour/silk-road-adventure/) Then you could tell me your travel plan, such as how many people will visit, when will you arrive in China, how many days you would like to spend. I will construct an itinerary based on your need and give you an exact quote. My e-mail address is lussie@chinahighlights.com I am looking forward to serving you. Lussie Lu replied on 2012-10-03
April Offer $25 Coupon
  1. Send your inquiry before Apr. 30, 2014, and we will email you a $25 coupon.
  2. The coupon is valid till Dec. 31, 2014, for paying tour packages worth $250 or up.
  3. The coupon cannot be used for paying flight tickets, train tickets, hotel rooms and day trips.
Travel Advice or Question? Ask us here
Do you want to book a tour/hotel/Wi-Fi. etc.
Your Name Your Email