City of Kashgar

Despite the dusty, aging ancient buildings we have seen in the old part of Kashgar, the other side of the city is surprisingly very modern. We take a walk towards the Southern Bus Station to get a hand of tickets for Karakul Lake tomorrow. We need to check the bus station whereabouts and plan accordingly on how to get there first thing in the morning next day.

Walking down Jiefang Road in front of Id Kah mosque towards South, we start seeing high rise buildings and alot of cars. Kashgar city map comes in handy to give us direction to the bus station.

At the big junction we’re expected to use the subway to cross the huge road. It’s amazing that they have many subways every some hundred meters and how I wish KL has this facilities too.

We pass by an area which I guess the People Park asĀ referredĀ in map. Although a little confusing as we cant still see any sight of bus terminal after walking this far. After checking with some Uyghur women we encounter, it’s understood that the bus station should be after 2 more junctions. How come it looks very near in the map!

After a day being overwhelmed by Uyghur exotic culture here in Kashgar, we only realized that we’re still in China once we see the Mao statute! :) Wasn’t it a Mao statute also that we saw in Chengdu? Does this man practically have his statute in every single city in China??

So you can see more Chinese people in the city part here. We stop by a watch repair stall to let the guy fix my cheap watch, for 8 yuan, which is horribly done, but I have no choice. The bus station is a few steps away, it’s a huge building with a universal Chinese logo for bus station/stop/terminal which resembles the Mercedes logo. We manage a pair of tickets for Karakul Lake at 38 yuan per person, departing at 10 am Beijing time (8am local time). I’m rather surprised that the ticket people do not say anything about us having to get permit for Karakul Lake, but soon we’re planning to check with the police station itself.

Way back, we spare the walk and take a bus for 1 yuan instead. The bus service is very frequent! And it’s very systematic, for example, it only stops at the designated bus stop (unlike bus in KL stops just wherever and whenever people pressing the bell!), which I guess helps to smooth the traffic.

Pineapple being sold in cart. Wondering how they taste, yet we refrain from taking any uncooked food when traveling (and what’s with the water?).

We return to the police station to check regarding permit for Karakul Lake. Been here earlier before going to bus station but the officers were on lunch break. 4 police officers come to hear us, but sadly none of them understand English. I make a call to Nazar (in Urumqi!) to have him talk to one of the officers, while another officer is trying to call some other officer who can speak to us, and after repeatedly asking the same questions, she confirms us that we dont need any permit for Karakul Lake, rather all we need is to bring our passport (of course!). Having said that, we jump with joy that we didnt get trapped by tour agents and manage to save 1000 yuan by going there by bus ourselves! Can’t wait for tomorrow!

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