He appears to have ascended from Kabul to the plateau of the Pamir, and thence onwards by Yarkand, Khotan and Aksu.
From it the Oxus, or Amu, flows off to the west, and the Jaxartes, or Syr, to the north, through the Turki state of Khokand, while to the east the waters run down past Kashgar to the central desert of the Gobi, uniting with the streams from the northern slope of the Tibetan plateau that traverse the principalities of Yarkand and Khotan, which are also Turki.
From Khotan he followed the Tarim to Aksu.
Kanishka and other monarchs were zealous but probably by no means exclusive Buddhists, and the conquest of Khotan and Kashgar must have facilitated the spread of Buddhist ideas to China.
The names given to them are the Kilian or Kiliang, the Khotan and the Keriya Mountains in the more northerly range and the Raskem or Raskan, the Sughet and the Ullugh-tagh Mountains in the more southerly range.
The latter range is separated from the Karakorum Mountains by the deeply trenched gorge of the Raskem or Yarkand-darya, while the deep glen of the Kara-kash or Khotan-darya intervenes between the upper (Sughet Mountains) and the lower (Kilian Mountains) border-ranges.
Situated at the junction of routes from the valley of the Oxus, from Khokand and Samarkand, Almati, Aksu, and Khotan, the last two leading from China and India, Kashgar has been noted from very early times as a political and commercial centre.
Silk culture and carpet manufacture have flourished for ages at Khotan, and the products always find a ready sale at Kashgar.
The earliest authentic mention of Kashgar is during the second period of ascendancy of the Han dynasty, when the Chinese conquered the Hiungnu, Yutien (Khotan), Sulei (Kashgar), and a group of states in the Tarim basin almost up to the foot of the Tian Shan mountains.
From the Ganges valley the silkworm was slowly carried westward and spread in Khotan, Persia and the states of Central Asia.
Aurel Stein in Khotan seem to include very early, if not the earliest known, Tibetan documents.
Dalgleish in1885-1887made a protracted journey from Ladak, in the course of which they crossed the Aksai Chin, reached Khotan, entered the A, D.
Mr Littledale, an Englishman, accompanied by his wife, left Khotan in the early part of 1895, and travelling thence to St George R.Cherchen, he turned southwards, and following up Littledale, the course of the Cherchen darya to a point near its 1895.
How far to the east the distinctive influence of Greece went is shown by the seal-impressions with Athena and Eros types found by Dr Stein in the buried cities of Khotan (Sand-buried Ruins of Khotan, p. 396), and according to Mr E.
In the Chinese annals of Khotan in Cashgar, when a certain stream dried up, a female dragon declared that her husband had died; one of the royal grandees sacrificed himself to meet the want, the water flowed once more, and the " husband " of the being became the guardian of the kingdom's prosperity.
The relationship between the Pahlavi and the Aramaic is clearest in the records written in the " Chaldaeo-Pahlavi " characters; the a conclusion which is not invalidated by the fact that some important modifications are found beyond this area, nor by Dr Stein's discovery of a great mass of documents in this alphabet at Khotan in Turkestan, for, according to tradition, the ancient inhabitants of Khotan were emigrants banished in the time of King Agoka from the area to which Buhler assigns this alphabet (see Stein's Preliminary Report, 1901, p. 51).
The oasis of Kashgar limits it in the N., and a tract of desert separates it from the oasis of Khotan in the S.E.
Yarkand is surrounded by a number of smaller towns, the chief of which are - Yanghi-hissar, which has about 600 houses, Tashkurgan on the Pamirs, Posgam (1600 houses), Kargalyk, at the junction of the routes leading to Ladakh and Khotan (2000 houses), Sanju (2000), Tagarchi, Kartchum, Besh-taryk (1800) and Guma (3000).
This time, however, he crosses Pamir, of which he gives a remarkable account, and passes by Kashgar, Khotan (Kustana), and the vicinity of Lop-nor across the desert to Kwa-chow, whence he had made his venturous and lonely plunge into the waste fifteen years before.
In Nepal, Bashahr and Rampur, and at Doda Kashtwar in the Jammu territory, opium is produced and exported to Yarkand, Khotan and Aksu.