MARCO POLO’S JOURNEY TO ASIA

6 Days

Trip Facts

  • 5 star executive suite
  • Bus, Taxi
  • Available
  • Suitable throughout the year
  • Breakfast and Dnner
  • English and local language
  • yes
  • 1-15

Marco Polo, an Italian explorer, embarked on a journey to Asia along the Silk Road. He traveled through various Asian countries, including China, and his writings introduced Europeans to the cultures, civilizations, and trade routes of the East.

Overview

Marco Polo’s journey to Asia is a significant historical event that took place in the 13th century. Marco Polo, an Italian merchant and explorer, embarked on a remarkable expedition to Asia, particularly to the Mongol Empire, which spanned a vast area including modern-day China, Mongolia, and other surrounding regions. Here’s an overview of Marco Polo’s journey:

  1. Background and Motivation: Marco Polo was born into a Venetian merchant family in 1254. His father and uncle, Niccolò and Maffeo Polo, were already experienced traders who had established contacts in the East. In 1271, when Marco was around 17 years old, he accompanied his father and uncle on their second journey to Asia, driven by a desire for trade, exploration, and adventure.

  2. Travel Route: The Polos traveled along the Silk Road, a network of trade routes that connected Europe with Asia. They crossed through various regions, including the Middle East, Central Asia, and eventually reached the Mongol Empire.

  3. Time in the Mongol Empire: The Polos arrived at the court of Kublai Khan, the ruler of the Mongol Empire, in 1275. Marco Polo gained favor with Kublai Khan and served in various administrative and diplomatic roles within the empire. He spent about 17 years in Asia, traveling extensively within the empire and even venturing into areas that were largely unknown to Europeans at the time.

  4. Observations and Accounts: During his time in Asia, Marco Polo observed and recorded a wide range of cultural, geographical, and historical details. His writings, collectively known as “The Travels of Marco Polo” or simply “The Travels,” provided Europeans with one of the most comprehensive and detailed accounts of Asia up to that point. His descriptions of the Chinese civilization, the grandeur of the Mongol Empire, and other regions greatly expanded Western knowledge about the East.

  5. Return to Venice and Impact: Marco Polo returned to Venice in 1295 after his long stay in Asia. His accounts of his journey and experiences were met with both skepticism and fascination. He participated in the Venetian-Genoese War and was eventually captured and imprisoned by Genoese forces. While in prison, he dictated his travel experiences to a fellow inmate, Rustichello da Pisa, which resulted in the creation of “The Travels.”

  6. Legacy and Influence: “The Travels of Marco Polo” had a profound impact on European exploration and expansion in subsequent centuries. His descriptions of the riches of the East, including spices, silks, and other valuable goods, fueled the European desire to establish direct trade routes to Asia. His writings contributed to the Age of Discovery and influenced future explorers like Christopher Columbus.

It’s important to note that there has been some debate and skepticism about the accuracy of certain details in Marco Polo’s accounts, but his journey remains a significant milestone in the history of exploration and cultural exchange between East and West.

 

Trip Highlights

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Itinerary

Marco Polo's journey to Asia took him through a complex and varied itinerary, spanning several years and covering a vast geographical area. While the exact route and timeline may have some variations due to historical uncertainties, here's a general overview of his itinerary

Marco Polo and his father and uncle set out from Venice in 1271, traveling eastward along established trade routes. They likely passed through Constantinople (modern-day Istanbul) in the Byzantine Empire before continuing on.

After Constantinople, they traveled through the Black Sea region, possibly visiting ports and trading posts along the coast. They eventually reached the Crimean Peninsula, where they encountered the Mongol-controlled region of the Golden Horde.

From the Crimea, the Polos journeyed eastward through the vast steppes of Central Asia, encountering various Turkic and Mongol tribes along the way. They passed through regions like the Caspian Sea and Persia (modern-day Iran), where they encountered the Ilkhanate, a division of the Mongol Empire.

Continuing east, the Polos followed the Silk Road trade routes through Central Asia, which led them to the heart of the Mongol Empire. They arrived in the Yuan Dynasty-controlled China and eventually reached the capital, Khanbaliq (modern-day Beijing).

Marco Polo and his family spent a considerable amount of time in China, where he became a trusted adviser to Kublai Khan, the Mongol ruler. He undertook various missions and administrative roles in different parts of China, gaining a deep understanding of the culture, society, and governance.

Marco Polo's travels within China extended to various regions, including the southern parts of the empire. He visited cities such as Hangzhou, which was one of the most prosperous and cosmopolitan cities of the time.

After their extensive stay in China, the Polos eventually set out on their return journey. They traveled south through Southeast Asia, possibly visiting places like Sumatra, before embarking on a sea voyage back to Persia.

Upon reaching Persia, the Polos likely followed the same or similar route they had taken on their eastward journey. They journeyed through regions like Mesopotamia and Anatolia, making their way back to Europe.

Cost

The Trip Cost Includes

  • Pick-up or Drop-off service from and to Airport(in our own vehicle)
  • Transportation to and from!!
  • Food all along the trip(Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner and a cup of coffee or tea) and accommodations during the trip in hotels with family environment
  • Transportation, food, accommodation and insurance of Guide during the trip
  • Down jacket, all-season sleeping bag, duffel bag and trekking map(in case if you don’t have your own. Down jacket, sleeping bag and duffel bag must be returned after completion of the trip)
  • First Aid Medical Kit(Your guide will carry the Medical Kit but we also advise to bring yourself for your own use, as far as possible)
  • All the required permits and paperwork

The Trip Cost Excludes

  • International Airfare
  • Visa Charges
  • Hotel Expenses(In Kathmandu, some packages do include hotel expenses)
  • Your travel and medical insurance
  • Personal Expenses such as shopping, bar bills, hot shower, telephone, laundry, titbits etc
  • Food and accommodations in Kathmandu
  • Services not mentioned or not promised by the agent/agency
  • Emergency expenses such as expenses on chartered helicopter.

Frequently asked Questions

Who was Marco Polo and why is his journey to Asia significant?

Marco Polo was an Italian merchant and explorer born in Venice in 1254. His journey to Asia is significant because he traveled extensively through the Mongol Empire, providing one of the most detailed and comprehensive accounts of Asian culture, geography, and societies to Europeans. His writings, collectively known as “The Travels of Marco Polo,” played a crucial role in expanding Western knowledge of the East and influencing subsequent exploration.

 

What motivated Marco Polo to undertake his journey to Asia?

Marco Polo’s journey was motivated by a combination of trade opportunities, curiosity, and a desire for adventure. His family had already established trading connections with the East, and they sought to explore new trade routes and establish diplomatic relationships with the Mongol Empire.

What route did Marco Polo take on his journey to Asia?

Marco Polo and his family traveled along the Silk Road, a network of trade routes connecting Europe to Asia. They journeyed through Constantinople, the Crimean Peninsula, Central Asia, Persia (Iran), and ultimately reached the heart of the Mongol Empire in China. They explored various regions within the empire and likely followed a similar route on their return journey.

How long did Marco Polo stay in Asia?

Marco Polo and his family spent approximately 17 years in Asia, primarily within the Mongol Empire. They arrived in the Mongol court around 1275 and remained there until around 1292, after which they embarked on their return journey.

What role did Marco Polo play in the Mongol Empire?

Marco Polo served in various administrative and diplomatic roles within the Mongol Empire. He gained the trust of Kublai Khan and was involved in missions, trade negotiations, and other official duties. His ability to speak multiple languages and his keen observations made him a valuable asset to the Mongol court.

What did Marco Polo observe and document during his journey

Marco Polo documented a wide range of observations in his writings, “The Travels of Marco Polo.” He described the grandeur of the Mongol Empire, the Chinese civilization, the city of Beijing (Khanbaliq), the people, customs, religions, flora, fauna, and various other aspects of the regions he visited. His detailed accounts provided Europeans with a unique insight into Asian societies.

How did Marco Polo's writings impact European exploration and knowledge?

Marco Polo’s writings had a significant impact on European exploration and knowledge. His descriptions of the riches of the East, including spices, silks, and valuable goods, inspired future explorers and merchants to seek direct trade routes to Asia. His accounts contributed to the Age of Discovery and expanded European understanding of the world.

Were Marco Polo's accounts of his journey accurate?

While there have been debates about the accuracy of some details in Marco Polo’s accounts, his writings are generally considered a valuable historical source. Some discrepancies may arise from language barriers, cultural differences, or changes in names and places over time. Nonetheless, his observations provide valuable insights into the societies he encountered.

How did Marco Polo's journey influence later exploration and trade?

Marco Polo’s journey helped spark European interest in exploring and trading with the East. His descriptions of valuable commodities and rich cultures encouraged subsequent explorers, such as Christopher Columbus, to seek new routes to Asia. His accounts played a role in shaping European perceptions of the East and contributed to the exploration and expansion of the Western world.

What is Marco Polo's legacy today?

Marco Polo’s legacy includes his role as a pioneering explorer and one of the earliest Western authors to provide detailed accounts of Asia. His writings continue to be studied by historians, geographers, and scholars, offering valuable insights into the historical and cultural connections between East and West. He is remembered as a key figure in the Age of Exploration and a bridge between different civilizations.

 

 

 
 

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MARCO POLO’S JOURNEY TO ASIA
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Trip Facts

  • 5 star executive suite
  • Bus, Taxi
  • Available
  • Suitable throughout the year
  • English and local language
  • Breakfast and Dinner
  • yes
  • 1-15