Understanding “Xinjiang Time” and China’s Two Time Zones

November 26 | 8 Comments

Does Xinjiang have two time zones? While traveling around Xinjiang, at some point you’ll likely here the terms “Xinjiang time” and “Beijing time” thrown around. I’d like to take a few minutes to help you understand China’s time zones and which time zone is used in Xinjiang specifically. Imagine a traffic jam in China’s capital […]

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How to Rent a Car in China | Traveler’s Guide

October 22 | 20 Comments

No tourist buses. No blazing hot sun beating down on me. No need to pay an entrance fee.

Just the pure joy of independent travel in my favorite province in China.

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Learn to Speak Uyghur – in Xinjiang

September 1 | 35 Comments

If you have the chance to study Uyghur while living in Xinjiang…consider yourself lucky! There is no better way to pick up a language than through immersion, so take advantage of your time in the province. But…what are the best places to study Uyghur in Xinjiang?

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How I Got a China Driver’s License in Xinjiang

August 20 | 59 Comments

Are you looking to get a Chinese driver’s license? The truth is that China is one of those places where a “definitive guide” is impossible – your experience is always going to be slightly different than mine. That said, perhaps hearing about how I obtained a Chinese driver’s license will help you understand what to expect […]

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10 Crazy, Little-Known Facts about Xinjiang

August 14 | 2 Comments

For most people around the world – including Chinese people in China – Xinjiang is a mysterious and generally misunderstood region. What makes Xinjiang so special? And how can one place cause fear for some people and inspiration from another? As a foreigner who has lived in the Xinjiang region since 2006, I’ve learned that […]

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Living in Xinjiang | One Foreigner’s Perspective

February 16 | 17 Comments

For most people who want to study in China, moving and living in Xinjiang is not one of the first things that comes to mind. Why is that? For one, it’s a place that is associated with a number of stereotypes, including stereotypes people have about China as well as prejudice directed toward Xinjiang, which can even […]

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10 Years in Xinjiang | CCTV Documentary

October 27 | 2 Comments

In July of 2016, I was connected to Han Bin, a senior producer who was planning to film a CCTV documentary series on the Xinjiang region. He was going to create 18 mini-documentaries on various stories and characters to help paint a picture of Xinjiang that he felt was missing from the state-run broadcaster. For some reason he […]

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Prehistoric Porn in Xinjiang, China (Historic Petroglyphs)

September 29 | 12 Comments

Kangjiashimenzi (康家石门子) is a collection of ancient petroglyphs that were carved into the side of a massive red-basalt rock in China’s remote region of Xinjiang. These carvings have been dated to about 2000 B.C. and they are believed to be the world’s earliest recordings of an ancient fertility ritual. Some call it an archeological wonder. […]

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Xinjiang Road Trip | Stunning Highway 216

May 17 | 40 Comments

[sam id=”1″ codes=”true”]It all started with a single WeChat message, a kind of Chinese social media, from a friend that lived in Korla. I was planning to drive out his way from the capital of Urumqi and he insisted that my Xinjiang road trip include Highway 216. He told me it was an extremely bumpy ride […]

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Self-Publishing a Travel Guide: My Experience

June 3 | 24 Comments

What does it take to self-publish a travel guide? I take a look back at my publishing experience to review what it cost me and how successful the book has been so far.

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