Planning the Trip to Silk Road
When to Go
|Modern Camel Team, Dunhuang, Gansu|
The months of May and October are the best time to travel the Silk Road. The summer can be searingly hot. The winter is freezing. During May, the average temperature along the route is around 15C. The scenery is most beautiful during this month. The accumulated winter snow on the tableland is melting. The grass is turning green. Visitors can enjoy this enchanting scenery without suffering extreme temperatures.
In addition, visitor can travel to Silk Road during festivals. There are about 20 nationalities (ethnic groups) living along the Silk Road. If lucky, visitors may have the chance to witness or attend some of the colorful festivals and holidays of these various nationalities.
With the exception of the Han nationality, (which has the same festivals and holidays of China), each nationality celebrates their own festivals and holidays according to their different historical, religious and cultural background.
|Tourist Riding on A Camel|
Manchu has the same festivals with the Hans, although there are still some differences in respective celebrating styles.
Different nationalities may enjoy the same festivals as they might be influenced by the same religion. People from Bao'an, Kazak, Hui, Kergez, Tatar, Uigur, Ozbek, Dongxiang and Salar nationalities all believe in Islam. All Muslims celebrate Kaizhai Festival and Guerbang Festival.
Other major celebrations are the Mongolian Nadam Festival, the Kazak Nawurezi Festival, the Tibetan Dafozhanyang Festival (Festival to Worship the Buddha statues) and the Tatar Saban Festival.
What to Take
|Tourists at Nalati Grassland, Yili, Xinjiang|
However, do not burden your trip with more baggage than you can easily carry. It is best to travel fairly light but well prepared.
Xi'an: The average temperature in October is 10 ~ 19C and 3~ 12C in November.
Dunhuang: The average temperature in October is 1~19C and -6 ~ 8C in November.
Had better take your warm clothes, including the hats, gloves, sweater...
Anyway, it is still suggested you take trains or planes to get to cities along the route, which may save you a lot of time and energy.