Lands from the Mongol Empire

A compilation of visual stories that connect the land, culture and people of Eurasia that were linked by the former Mongol Empire under Genghis Khan, the ruler who united the nomadic tribes of northeast Asia.

Afghanistan: White pigeons surround Mazar-e-sharif. Mazar-e-sharif means ‘noble shrine’, and it is home to the shrine of Hazrat Ali, the fourth caliph and son-in-law of the Prophet Muhammad. Genghis Khan sacked Balkh in 1220, and the siege of Balkh in 1370 was key to the rise of Tamerlane. The shrine was rebuilt in the 15th century. © Kim Lau


China: West of the Yellow River is the Hexi Corridor, the passage into China from Central Asia. This is a renowned section of the Silk Road that encompasses the Gobi Desert. At the centre of the corridor is Zhangye, which is in an area of rainbow-coloured rock formations. Marco Polo, together with his father and uncle, spent a year here at Campichu in the state of Tangut, which has been identified today as Zhangye. Marco Polo would have seen this rainbow-hued passage. © Kim Lau


Kyrgyzstan: A young Kyrgyz boy in the golden hours of the afternoon beside the shores of Song-kol. Song-kol is a picturesque jailoo (high-land pasture) in Kyrgyzstan where herders fatten their stocks in the summer, and return to their home in the winter. © Kim Lau


China: One of the many sandstone cliff Buddhist grottoes along the Hexi Corridor, Mati Si translates as 'horse hoof monastery.' The name arises from the legend that a sacred horse left its hoof prints inside the grotto. © Kim Lau


Syria: The Mongol Empire had little success in conquering Syria. In Aleppo before the war, a hospitable carpet shop owner beams from his souq shop. © Kim Lau

Mongolia: Horse Breeding in Eastern Mongolia. The Mongol Empire was established on horseback. The rise and fall of the empire was dramatic. The Mongols are back to where they began and their horse breeding traditions continue. © Kim Lau

Check out the whole compilation of stunning photos and stories in Asian Geographic Passport 'Travel Through History' Collectors' Edition 2016-2017.


Text and Photos by Kim Lau



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