So we are in Turfan. The past 72 hours have been a whirl wind. This time three days ago, we were in Xian. Then the next day we boarded a plane to Dunhuang. The flight was a brief two hours and then we arrived. Looking out of the windows of the plane, it looked like there was only one road. It was quite the sight.

If you ever want to know what it is like to be a president, you should fly to Dunhuang.
So we are in Turfan. The past 72 hours have been a whirl wind. This time three days ago, we were in Xian. Then the next day we boarded a plane to Dunhuang. The flight was a brief two hours and then we arrived. Looking out of the windows of the plane, it looked like there was only one road. It was quite the sight.

If you ever want to know what it is like to be a president, you should fly to Dunhuang.
After we grabbed our luggage it was off to meet our guide, Jenny, and to our first stop the Mogao Caves. The caves are a key location to studying Buddhism, due to the discovery of the Library Cave in the early 1900s.

The Mogao Caves were built as acts of devotion dating back to the early Han Dynasty until the Tang Dynasty. After the Tan Dynasty, the caves were sealed to prevent damage due to instability in the region.

In order to preserve the caves, pictures are not allowed in the cave. You should google them. The only way to describe it is: indescribable. We are also really lucky because there are serious discussions about actually closing down the caves, in order to preserve them.

Afterwards, we had a delicious dinner. Then we went to the Sing Sands and the Crescent Lake. There we got to ride camels. It was amazing. The sights from the top of the Dunes (or the middle of them) it was breathtaking. Absolutely breathtaking!
After we returned our camels, we went to the Crescent Lake, which is an oasis. Also, it started to rain. On average it rains about five times a year in Dunhuang. The total annual rainfall is 40mm. It rained twice while we were there.

When we got to our hotel, Jenny surprised Kelsey with a birthday cake because Kelsey turned 20!
Next, some of us students ventured to the Night Market down the street from our hotel.

The next morning we went to the see the rements of the Han Dynasty Great Wall. It was amazing. Situated thousands of kilometers from the seat of imperial power, were these military outposts. One of the really cool parts about these walls and forts are that they were built out of mud and straw.
After a delicious lunch, we went to a museum that opened in 2003. It was amazing. They a lot of Han and Tang Dynasty pieces. This time it was more daily life pieces for the solider. We also got to see one of the most impressive views ever.
 


Tyler's Mom
05/19/2013 3:21am

How awesome to ride a camel in the desert and a bike on the great wall.....it's like you guys are on the amazing race. Lol. Tyler I hope you have a picture on a camel to go with the dolphin. I have to really thank whomever it was that had the idea to put the map on the website. Back home we received news that 55 people where killed and 14 were missing from the rains in southern China. It was a great relief to go to the map and see that you are nowhere near there. So thank you. I believe you should be leaving today so have a safe flight and we'll see you all tomorrow oh wait today....I'm confused. Lol

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