Sunday Livestock Market
Sunday Livestock Market information
Lonely Planet review
No visit to Kashgar is complete without a trip to the Livestock Bazaar. Since it only occurs once a week you’ll need to plan accordingly. The day begins with Uighur farmers and herders trekking into the city from nearby villages. By lunchtime just about every sellable sheep, camel, horse, cow and donkey within 50km has been squeezed through the bazaar gates. Trading is swift and boisterous between the old traders; animals are carefully inspected and haggling is done with finger motions. Happy buyers then stuff the sheep in the back of a taxi or truck and lurch away. It’s dusty, smelly, crowded and totally wonderful. Keep an ear out for the phrase ‘Bosh-bosh!’ (‘Coming through!’) or you risk being ploughed over by a cartload of fat-tailed sheep.
In 2012 the market relocated to the northwestern suburbs. A taxi here costs ¥15; it’s a good idea to pay it to wait for your return. Alternatively take bus No 8 to People’s Hospital and then jump on a motorised pedicab (¥2). Tour buses usually arrive in the morning so consider an early afternoon visit. A few simple stalls offer hot samsas if you get peckish.
If you miss the Sunday Market, don’t despair: there are plenty of other markets in Xīnjiāng to visit. Try the Sunday market in Hotan or Kuqa, the Monday market in Upal or the Tuesday market in Charbagh.