Arriving in Kashgar

Arriving in the Kashgar airport was a little unnerving.  I had left the cocoon of Beijing with all signage in English and arrived in the Kashgar airport with almost all Chinese and Uyghur signage.

When travelling alone, my rule is to arrive in daylight hours, and it was daylight.  I feel much safer lost in daylight than lost in the dark at night.  I managed to catch the airport bus which dropped me off directly in front of my hotel, the Qinibagh.  At this time of year, there are hardly any other tourists.

It is a monster of an old-fashioned hotel – enormous.  The rooms are all toasty but the hallways are dark (saving energy) and everyone wears their coats in the hallway and lobby.  The location was excellent as it is right next to the northwest remaining section of old town.  Construction of the new 5* hotel is continuing apace and with luck, I will see it someday.

The breakfasts in Xinjiang hotels are healthy but unrecognizable to me.  As a Chinese-American woman, I would recognize congee or a western breakfast.  My Uyghur guide, said that they generally have some tea and nan.  This breakfast has congee (but the consistency is different) pickled and fresh vegetables, hard boiled eggs and a variety of breads.  In addition to the congee, there was something like chickpea powder broth.

If anyone can shed any light on the origin of this breakfast composition, I would be very appreciative.

I would have preferred to stay at the Old Town Hostel, but it was closed for February.  The pictures of the hostel courtyard are quite enticing.  I did the next best thing, which is to photograph it.

The first afternoon, after settling in, I roamed old town to my heart’s content.

The attached pictures are views of Old Town Hostel and from my hotel room.  The tape in the window is for weatherproofing in addition to the heavy curtains.

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