China Silk Road Photographs

China’s Silk Road Photographs

The Silk Road was an ancient network of trade routes connecting the West and East from China to the Mediterranean Sea. It began with silk merchants during the Han Dynasty (207 BC – 220 AD) although some remnants of what was probably Chinese silk have been found in Egypt from 1070 BC. It was named the ‘Silk Road’ in 1877 by Ferdinand von Richthofen, a German geographer. The Silk Road is now included in the UNESCO World Heritage List with 22 Chinese sites in Shaanxi, Henan, Gansu and Xinjiang provinces.

China is also the largest miner of gold in the world, producing 490 tonnes of each year.

I travelled along the Chinese part of the Silk Road back in 2010, visiting Beijing, Xian, Lanzhou, Xiahe, Jiayuguan, Dunhuang,Daheyan, Turpan, Urumqi, Lake Karakol and finally Kashgar. Once you go off the main road, down a side street or away from the main towns, you can surround yourself with a more ancient experience of China and imagine the life and times of the silk traders as you are passed as a tourist from one spot to another. These are some of my favourite photographs I took during this visit.