Turkestan Solo: A Journey Through Central Asia (Paperback)Ella Maillart
Paperback Published: 04/10/2005
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In 1932, long before travelling in Central Asia became fashionable, Ella Maillart travelled to Russian Turkestan, bordered by China, Tibet, Pakistan, and Afghanistan. Her dream was to see the mountains that lay on the fringes of China and the Takla Makan desert. She travelled like a nomad - slowly, by camel and on foot. Setting out from Moscow, she crossed Kyrgyzstan as far as the Tien Shan range (the Celestial Mountains). She climbed the 5,000 metre-high Sari Tor on makeshift skis, explored the legendary cities of Tashkent, Samarkand, Khiva and Bukhara, travelled down the Amu Daria river and crossed, solo, the freezing and hostile wastes of the Kizil Kum, the Desert of Red Sands. Her companions are drawn from both past and present - Mongolian princesses rub shoulders with Trotskyist exiles, whilst pilgrims and dervishes ride alongside emperors and kings. Even today, a trip like this would be considered daring. That Ella Maillart did it, largely alone and more than 70 years ago, makes her journey all the more remarkable.
Publisher: I.B.Tauris & Co Ltd