Flight: China Southern Airlines CZ6886
Depart Urumqi 14:45, Arrive Kashgar 16:30 (1h 45m).
Distance: 1470km, Fares: 550 RMB/person.
Taxi from Kempinski Hotel to Aiport: 40 RMB. If you manage your time earlier, you can catch shuttle bus from here to Airport for 10 RMB. And I also think I have read somewhere that it’s free if you’re flying Southern China Airlines. Bus frequency is however only every 30minutes.
Continuing the run again, but we’re done with two long trains and now we’re so relieved that we’re taking flight finally, and we’re reaching our destination soon! :D Although we feel a little upset for missing shuttle bus in Kempinski Hotel (which otherwise would save us 20 RMB instead of paying 40 RMB for greedy taxi driver). Anyways. The Urumqi airport is actually rather far from the city, I guess 30 minutes. And the airport has 3 separate terminal buildings, and China Southern Airlines serve in Terminal 3.
The luggage check-in went smoothly, but when it comes to getting into the boarding gate, the security screening is pretty tight. We are told to take off our shoes, and they scan the whole body until the foot palm! And Az happened to have forgotten putting his Swiss Card in the hand luggage, which the officers need to dig into his backpack several times taking out things after things to re-scan in the screening conveyor (for I guess, 5 times!). Finally after we help them find the Swiss Card of out the backpack, they told Az to check-in the backpack as cargo luggage, which he went alone leaving me wait in the boarding area alone. It was our fault for not checking in the first place, oh well.
Many years ago, I used to whine over USM Engineering Campus being so remote from things and places I can call a habitat. I would always refer Nibong Tebal as a deserted place. I know that was only me being so emotionally unadventurous. Until I really came to stay for an isolated place you can’t even see people around. Like, VERY isolated. And I’ve know got a new picture to define that.
Karakul Lake, located 5 hours south of Kashgar by bus. In reality, it can hardly be recognized as a place mentioned in Lonely Planet for its inhabitant, empty look. Not even any signboard saying the name. When we got down from the bus (only Az and I!) in the middle of the mountains, the first in my mind was, “OMG, this. Place. Is. So. EMPTY!” Although, I had never expected a busy supermarket here either. But, we had never imagined that only two of us would come to this place at this time.
Maybe it was not yet the season. Middle of April. And yes, it’s cold. But the amazing thing was, you have all the lake and mountains for yourself. This is the view we had in our left.
Nobody, really. I had thought that Kyrgyz locals would set up their yurts around the lake, but that’s in summer. They actually live in a village 10 minutes by bike from here (so does our yurt owner). The Muztagh Ata mountain, sitting peacefully at our right.
And at the back, the one and only yurt at this point of time. Where we spent a freezing night with a traditional burner that failed around 3am >.< and far at the corner.. yes, you spot it right.. is the outdoor toilet. A literally open toilet, the only toilet I have used where you can see the most beautiful views (the first 2 pictures) while doing the business.