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We looked at two old cities in ruins, Subash, a Buddhist city near Kuqa and Jiaohe/Yar near Turpan. They were quite different even if the houses were very eroded.
Subash was at a river and along that river a branch of the Silk Road went through the Tian Shan-mountains. The city was on both side of the river but we only looked at the part on the west side. I didn’t find it particular interesting, but it is typical for this area, there must be at least ten cities like that in and around Taklamakan. Subash was built in the period 220-420AD. Most of the building were rubble but a few were better preserved. A A view over to the east side. The buildings can barely be seen.
Jiaohe or Yar was an important city in the Turpan depression. It was a capital for different and changing authorities from 108 to 840 AD. I is on a plateau between two rivers with 30 meter steep banks.
The plateau seen from the air.
What is special with Jiaohe is that many of the houses are not built on top of the plateau but dug down into the ground. These pictures hopefully show this. I was not too excited by these two cities, but I guess it is such an important part of the history of this part of Central Asia. But it like when you have seen five houses as rubble, you have seen all.