|An all day border crossing from Pakistan to China via the Khunjerab
Pass (4700 meters). From the immigration desk at Sost, Pakistan, we drove
an hour to the border crossing, where we saw instant and dramatic changes.
Once in China, ethnicity, landscape (rocks instead of greenery), time
(all of China runs on Beijing time, so the clock moved forward three hours
at the border), even the driver's side of the road (right instead of left).
We stopped at Tashkurgan, a town that isn't much to the eyes, but the
incredible ethnic diversity makes this place a people watcher's heaven.
Chinese, Tajiks, and Kyrgyz people, all dressed differently, roam the
streets. These local people aren't afraid to wear bold, colorful
clothes. Looking back, Pakistan has surprised us by being such a
great place to visit. The mountain scenery is fantastic and the
people are extremely friendly to strangers. The Silk Road has been an
ethnic kaleidescope. We've met many different races: Pakistanis,
Afghans, Kyrgyz, Tajiks, Uyghurs, and Chinese. All of these people
have their own languages, dress, and culture, so it is an amazing
experience to drive through their lands and experience the diversity.