China and Kyrgyzstan: The Silk Road High School Summer Program

COVID-19 Program Updates

Due to global health & safety concerns and travel restrictions related to the coronavirus, Where There Be Dragons has decided to offer flexible booking options for some of their upcoming programs. Learn more about COVID-19 updates to stay tuned regarding program information.

Video and Photos

Silk Road - Views of the Pamir Valley
Silk Road - Views of the Pamir Valley
Mustag Ata
Mustag Ata
China and Kyrgyzstan: The Silk Road High School Summer Program
China and Kyrgyzstan: The Silk Road High School Summer Program
China and Kyrgyzstan: The Silk Road High School Summer Program
China and Kyrgyzstan: The Silk Road High School Summer Program
China and Kyrgyzstan: The Silk Road High School Summer Program
China and Kyrgyzstan: The Silk Road High School Summer Program
China and Kyrgyzstan: The Silk Road High School Summer Program
China and Kyrgyzstan: The Silk Road High School Summer Program
China and Kyrgyzstan: The Silk Road High School Summer Program
China and Kyrgyzstan: The Silk Road High School Summer Program
China and Kyrgyzstan: The Silk Road High School Summer Program
China and Kyrgyzstan: The Silk Road High School Summer Program

About

Explore the diversity of China and Kyrgyzstan’s peoples and cultural traditions: live with Tibetan families in Qinghai Province, witness the dizzying pace of change, politics, and development in western China’s booming cities, visit a 2000 year-old bazaar in Kyrgyzstan and live with families on the shores of an alpine lake.
Silk Road…the words alone conjure up all kinds of images: camel caravans bringing the treasures of ancient China across the heart of Asia; empires old and new vying for power; knowledge and ideas traveling between cultures. Traveling from China into Kyrgyzstan and back, our Silk Road program explores this region’s history of exchange with all of Eurasia, and examines the connections between people living here today, including Han Chinese, Uyghur, Kyrgyz, Kazakh, Tajik, Mongol, Tibetan, and Hui communities.

We offer comprehensive, personal home visits so that we can answer your questions in person. One of our expert staff members will present on our program options and share stories from their own formative Where There Be Dragons program. To request a home visit in less than 2 minutes, fill out this form.

Highlights
  • Explore China and Central Asia’s ethnic, religious and cultural diversity
  • Learn about the ways that politics and development are reshaping daily life for local people
  • Travel through spectacular mountains and deserts, remote villages and booming cities
  • Engage in simple Mandarin, Uyghur, and Tibetan language study.

Questions & Answers

Reviews

9.5 Rating
based on 2 reviews
  • Growth 9
  • Support 9.5
  • Fun 9.5
  • Housing 7.5
  • Safety 8.5
Showing 1 - 2 of 2
Default avatar
Piers
10/10
Yes, I recommend this program

Silk Road Summer '17

This trip opened my eyes not only to parts of the world I couldn't have dreamed of, but also to myself. I learned a lot about my personality through interacting with new people for extended periods of time. I had to be a lot more self conscious about what I was saying due to the fact that I was with people I didn't know. Beyond experiencing a unique part of the world, this was the single greatest skill that I learned on this trip.

Due to the nature of Xinjiang, a traveller on this course must learn to appreciate spontaneity and changing plans. They must also be comfortable dealing with many unknowns. We were unexpectedly stuck in our hostel for an extra day due to an unexpected government meeting in the area, for instance. There were many times on the trip where plans couldn't be confirmed due to the unpredictable political situation in the area. We were going to visit a livestock market, but the road to the market happened to be shut down on that day. For me, THIS WAS NOT A BAD THING. I enjoyed not knowing what was around the corner and it created a heightened sense of adventure and travel.

Be prepared to physically exert yourself on multi-day treks, hot weather, and long bus rides. Learn to deal with fatigue - you learn the most when you are the most challenged. Use this state as a learning tool for self-growth. As Luke, one of the instructors told me, "your character is most revealed when you are challenged." Learn to be a good person to others when you are not feeling your best, and your peers will greatly appreciate you.

Overall, I would recommend this trip if you are up for personal and physical challenges, and if you want to see parts of the world you'd never think existed.

Default avatar
Max
9/10
Yes, I recommend this program

Silk Road

Traveling through Western China, to me, was a truly transformative experience. The trip really widened my cultural horizons and allowed to meet people different from my myself, including the Uyghurs of Xinjiang and the Tibetans of Qinghai province. I especially enjoyed my week-long homestay in a farming village, where I became fully immersed in the local way of life. The trip was certainly challenging due to constant and exhausting travel. Still, I would fully recommend this trip to someone wishing for a unique experience while fully willing to take on any challenge.