The Ancient Silk Road was a trade route that began in China in the 2nd century BC and, for more than 1700 years, linked Europe and Asia. As well as goods, it facilitated a cultural exchange between the continents, knowledge, religion, art, philosophy and tradition all passed back and forth between distant nations. Modern China now has the strongest economy in Asia and is a major world power. This series examines the enduring influence of the Silk Road in making the nation what it is today and how its legacy still thrives in China.