Jacek Pałkiewicz

Honorary President

Jacek Pałkiewicz is an Italian-Polish journalist, traveler, explorer and fellow of the Royal Geographical Society, the Russian Geographic Society and the Società Geografica Italiana. He is best known for his discovery of the sources of the Amazon River. Other expeditions were his crossing of the Atlantic alone in a lifeboat (44 days without a radio or sextant) and an expedition under the patronage of the government of Peru to search the semi-mythical city of El Dorado.
Pałkiewicz wrote for newspapers such as the Corriere della Sera and National Geographic, authored more than 30 books and became an internationally recognized expert on survival skills in extreme conditions. He has been a consultant to the Russian astronauts in the survival program, and he trains top counter-terrorist troops in extreme conditions in various climatic zones.

Since my early days I have explored all geographical zones and inaccessible small corners of our planet. Thanks to the Royal Geographical Society in London, I also crossed the Taklamakan Desert – the most difficult obstacle along the Silk Road – on the back of a Bactrian camel. In the native language, Taklamakan means “enter, and you won’t leave”. Crossing it resembled playing with death.

Meanwhile, the old caravan paths of the most famous ancient trade route were replaced with asphalt roads and railway tracks, and the Bactrian camels – with heavy trucks bearing GPS devices. The ancient ruins that have survived to this day still have their charm and are testimony to the magnitude of the old cultures. Like in the old days, great civilizations shared their technical achievements and knowledge, met, and their cultural influences mixed came together and wove together their cultural experiences. That is why, today its cultural heritage might serve as the grounds for building extensive cooperation. In the global context, the old route is becoming a symbol of high trading and the cultural potential of the entire region.

EUROPE GOES SILK ROAD follows this vision.

Driven by intellectual curiosity and fostering international understanding among the cultures of Europe and Asia the initiators take into account that it is vital for a prosperous common future to leave the comfort zone behind, discover the unknown, connect people and ideas, and exchange with partners all over the globe by breaking fresh ground.


Honorary President