Worth watching out for.
 — John Cleare

The Silk Roads

The Silk Roads

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Contents list


Contents list | Introduction | Planning your trip | The Middle East - practical information for the visitor | The Silk Road route maps | Sample city guide: Samarkand


 

INTRODUCTION

PART 1: PLANNING YOUR TRIP

    Routes, costs and making a booking
  
 Route options 8 – Costs 11 – When to go 12 – Making a booking 13
    Visas 15

    Before you leave
  
 Who to go with 20 – What to take 20 – Vaccinations and health safe-
    guards 25 – Travel insurance 27 – Background reading 27 – Internet
    resources 35 – Other useful points of contact 36

PART 2: THE SILK ROAD

    History
  
 The route 37 – Alexander the Great 45 – Zhang Qian 47 – The Parthian
    Shot 49 – The Royal Purple 51 – No more secrets 53 – A New Golden
    Age 54 – The Mongols 56 – Pax Mongolica 61 – The end 62

PART 3: THE MIDDLE EAST

    Facts about the region
  
 Geographical background 64 – History 65 – The people and their
    religion 80

    Practical information for the visitor
  
 The route 83 – Documents 85 – Climate 86 – Safety 86 – Accommodation 86
    Transport 88 – Travel agencies and tourist information 90
    Electricity 90 – Time 90 – Money 90 – Communications 92
    National holidays 93 – Customs and attitudes 93 – Food 94 – Drink 96

    Istanbul 97 – Cappadocia (Göreme) 112 – Antakya (Hatay) 117
    Aleppo 121 – Hama 126 – Krak des Chevaliers 129 – Palmyra 132
    Damascus 136 – Malatya and Kahta 145 – Erzurum 147
    Do?ubeyazit 153 – Tabriz 155 – Ghazvin (Qazvin) 157 – Tehran 160
    Esfahan 169 – Shiraz 176 – Persepolis 180 – Mashad 183

PART 4: CENTRAL ASIA

    Facts about the region
  
 Geographical background 187 – History 188 (Turkmenistan 197,
    Uzbekistan 199, Kyrgyzstan 201) – The people 202 

Practical information for the visitor
   
The route 205 – Documents and formalities 205 – Climate 207 – Safety 209
    Accommodation 211 – Travel agencies and tourist information 212
    Transport 212 – Electricity 214 – Time 214 – Money 214
    Communications 215 – National holidays 216 – Customs and attitudes 217
    Food 217 – Drink 218

   
Mary & Merv 219 – Ashgabat 224 – Konye-Urgench 229 – Nukus 233
    Khiva 235 – Bukhara 241 – Samarkand 252 – Tashkent 261 – The
    Ferghana Valley 269 – Osh 271 – Bishkek 274 – Issyk Kul (Lake
    Issyk) 278 – Song Kul (Lake Song) 281

PART 5: PAKISTAN AND THE KARAKORUM HIGHWAY

    Facts about the region
   
Geographical background 284 – History 284 – The people 294
    The economy 295 – Religion 295

    Practical information for the visitor
 
   The route 296 – Documents 299 – Climate 299 – Accommodation 300
    Travel agencies and tourist information 300 – Transport 301
    Electricity 302 – Time 302 – Money 302 – Communications 302
    National holidays 303 – Customs and attitudes 303 – Food 304 – Drink 305

   
Sost 306 – Passu 307 (Hiking around Passu 308) – The Hunza and
    Nagar valleys 311 (Karimabad 312) – Gilgit 315 – Rawalpindi and
    Islamabad 319

PART 6: CHINA

    Facts about the country
   
Geographical background 324 – History 324 – The people 336
    Religion 338

    Practical information for the visitor
 
   The route 339 – Documents 341 – Climate 341 – Accommodation 342
    Travel agencies and tourist information 344 – Transport 344
    Electricity 348 – Time 349 – Money 349 – Communications 349
    National holidays 350 – Customs and attitudes 350 – Food 352 – Drink 354

    Xinjiang 355 – Kashgar 359 – Kuqa (Kuche) 364 – Turfan (Tulufan) 367
    Southern Taklamakan route 376 – Khotan (Hetian) 377 – Charklik
    (Ruoqiang) 380 – Dunhuang 382 – Jiayuguan 389 – Lanzhou 394
    Xi’an 401 – Luoyang 411 – Pingyao 412 – Datong 416 – Beijing 420

APPENDIX  Useful words and phrases
(Arabic 441, Russian 442, Chinese 442)

INDEX  445

The Silk Roads

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