The realities of travelling independently in Xinjiang meant that everyday we encountered frustrations or difficulties – far more than I have the space to mention in this post. The natural beauty and fascinating history of this region is unique and the travel experience would be incomplete if unexplored. Karakul Lake is one of such places. Travel in the area would have been easier via a guided tour, where transport and hotels are arranged for you, but for anyone who prefers to travel independently, visiting this lake is anything but “smooth”.