For two millennia, the Great Silk Road was the key trade route linking the pinnacles
of eastern and western civilization. Caravans, laden with people and goods, crossed
mountains, deserts, rivers and continents, spreading ideas, technologies, religions,
and wealth to peoples and cultures along their path.
A primary artery of the Great Silk Road passes through the Land of the Kyrgyz, whose
hospitality and mountain springs offered respite from the desert lands of neighboring
peoples. The dales and valleys of the Tien-Shan provided shelter for the merchants,
workers, clergy and soldiers who journeyed the 6,500 kilometers between east and west.
At the height of the Silk Road’s significance, three trade routes traversed Kyrgyzstan,
prompting UNESCO to name the Chang’an-Tianshan Corridor a World Heritage Site in
2014. The well-preserved Tash Rabat Caravanserai, at 3,200 meters in Kyrgyzstan’s Naryn
Province, is a classic example of 15th century lodging for Silk Road travelers. Tourists can
revisit these historical routes and World Heritage Sites by horseback, off-road vehicle,
bicycle or motorbike, some of which are served by yurt camps.

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