12 days Silk Road sightseeing tour starting from Xining, a city on Xining-Tibet plateau with some Tibetan taste. Join in this tour you will visit Xining, Zhangye, Alex Youqi, Jiayuguan, Dunhuang, Turpan, Urumqi. These cities have either some well known cultural relics or unique natural scenery.
Day 1Xining arrival: Ta’er Monastery
Day 2Xining: Qinghai Lake
Day 3Xining – Zhangye by Train: Matisi Grottoes
Day 4Zhangye – Alax Youqi by Car: Bardain Jaran Desert
Day 5Alax Youqi – Zhangye by Car: Giant Buddha Temple
Day 6Zhangye: Danxia Mountain
Day 7Zhangye – Jiayuguan by Car: Jiayuguan Pass, Wejin Art Gallery
Day 8Jiayuguan – Dunhuang: Yulin Grottoes
Day 9Dunhuang – Turpan by Train: Mogao Grottoes, Echoing-Sand Mountain, Crescent Lake
Day 10Turpan: Jiaohe Ruins, Karea Well
Day 11Turpan – Urumqi by Car: Heavenly Lake
Day 12Urumqi departure
Air condition car+ English speaking guide + Entrance fee + Lunch + Hotel + Flight & Train tickets
Upon your arrival in Xining airport/train station, our local guide will wait you by holding a welcome board with your name and transfer to your hotel in Xining.
If the flight arrives in morning, we will arrange the visit to Ta’er Monastery, one of the famous Tibetan Buddhist temples in Qinghai Province. If you happen to travel to the temple in first month, fourth month, six month or ninth month of Chinese calendar, you will have chance to experience the royal temple fair in the temple. Accommodation: Xining
Day 2 Xining (Breakfast + Lunch)
After hotel breakfast, pick up from hotel lobby and then drive for about 2.5 hours to visit Qinghai Lake, the largest inland salt water lake in China. Tourist will meet the most beautiful Qinghai Lake in July and August when rape flower in their full bloom. Qinghai Lake is one of the best residential place for various kinds of birds. Each summer thousands of birds fly to Qinghai Lake to escape from hot summer and the ground of grove will be covered with birds’ stool. We will arrange a lake cruise for you to visit Bird Island in the lake. After the visiting here back to hotel in Xining, Accommodation: Xining.
Day 3 Xining to Zhangye by Fast Train (Breakfast + Lunch)
In the morning take the fast train to Zhangye. On the way you will appreciate Qilian Mountain Ranges in the train. Arriving in Zhangye you will visit Matisi Grottoes (Horse’s Hoof Temple). Highlight of the over 70 grottoes are Buddhist grottoes culture and Yugu Minor Ethnic culture. Accommodation: Zhangye
Day 4 Zhangye to Alax Youqi by Car (Breakfast + Lunch + Dinner)
After breakfast meet the guide and driver and drive to Alax Youqi. After lunch you will head for the Bardain Jaran Desert, one of the most beautiful desert in China. Walking at desert entrance to appreciate the lake and sand dune scenery. Today you will stay overnight at Mongolian yurt and enjoy local dinner. Accommodation: Bardain Jaran Desert
Day 5 Alax Youqi to Zhangye by Car (Breakfast + Lunch)
In the morning please continue your time in desert scenic area and then drive back to Zhangye. After arrival pay a visit to Giant Buddha Temple which is considered the largest architectural relics in Gansu Province. The Buddha Figure is so large that only the ear could keep 4 adults at one time. And the highlight of the temple is a Sleeping Buddha. Accommodation: Zhangye
Day 6 Zhangye (Breakfast + Lunch)
After breakfast we will head for the Danxia Mountain where you will see a truly picturesque world makes up of red, white, yellow and other color’s rock. Finishing the tour in Danxia Mountain we will drive back to hotel. Accommodation: Zhangye
Day 7 Zhangye to Jiayuguan by Car (Breakfast + Lunch)
In the morning we will check out Zhangye hotel and drive for about 2.5 hours to arrive at Jiayuguan. In Jiayuguan City we will firstly visit Jiayuguan Pass, the very west starting point of the Chinese Great Wall. Then move to visit Weijin Art Gallery which is actually the shared burial area of all ethnic group. The brick painting in tombs reflect some basic facts of local life in ancient time. Accommodation: Jiayuguan
Day 8 Jiayuguan to Dunhuang (Breakfast + Lunch)
In the early morning pick up from hotel and transfer to Dunhuang. On the way we will stop to visit Yulin Grottoes, the sister-caves of Mogao Grottoes. From the existed murals we could find Buddhist and Bodhisattva figures of various sizes and paintings telling Buddhist stories. The must visit cave is the Cave No 25 which was made in Golden Tang Dynasty. Then continue driving to Dunhuang City and check in hotel. Accommodation: Dunhuang
Day 9 Dunhuang to Turpan by Overnight Train (Breakfast + Lunch)
In the morning pick up by driver and guide and transfer directly to Mogao Grottoes, one of the four most famous caves in China and the real must see attraction along ancient Silk Road. In the afternoon, continue to visit the Echoing-Sand Mountain. When you slide down the slope, you can hear the roaring echo of sands, hence the name. A short Camel Ride will leave you a unforgettable memory. Riding along the mountain to reach the Crescent Lake, your eyes will be feasted on the crescent-shaped spring surrounded by the endless Gobi desert. After the happy time in Crescent Lake we will take the overnight train to Turpan. Accommodation: on the train
Day 10 Turpan (Lunch)
Upon arrival in Turpan, met by local guide and driver at the railway station and transfer to the hotel. After a short rest, start to visit the Jiaohe Ruins, one of the most important towns along the ancient Silk Road and the largest, oldest and best-preserved earth construction in the world. Followed by the Karez Well — an amazing irrigation system which made Turpan a rich oasis. Accommodation: Turpan
Day 11 Turpan to Urumqi by Car (Breakfast + Lunch)
In the morning board the train and drive to Heavenly Lake and cruise on the lake. 100 kilometers away from city of Urumqi, Heavenly Lake gives the impression of nobleness, elegance and beauty. Clear lake, snow mountains and soaring trees compose the charming scenery of the Heavenly Lake. Come to Heavenly Lake, and you will find words are so weak for the surrounding. It will make you totally relaxed no matter you are sitting in a boat, walking in the mountains, or just standing by the lake. Then back to hotel in Urumqi. Accommodation: Urumqi
Day 12 Urumqi Departure (Breakfast)
Pick up from hotel and transfer to airport for your flight departing Urumqi.
* Hotel accommodation with breakfasts
* Private English-speaking guides
* Private drivers & air-conditioned vehicles
* Entrance fees to tourist sites
* Soft sleeper train of Dunhuang/Turpan
*2nd class fast train of Xining/Zhangye Exclusions
* Personal expenses
* Gratuities for guides and drivers
Please use our online booking or send your travel request via e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org to us. You are also welcome to call us at 0086-15129005119 from Mon to Sun 24 hours.
Our real trip advisors will have your booking confirmed no more than 1 working day. We even take last minute booking if time is pressing. When your booking is confirmed, you will get a confirmation email from us, which includes the confirmed detailed itinerary with prices.
Deposit USD 50 will be charged in advance via Paypal for tour booking. The balance can be paid to our tour guide when you are on the tour, or the credit card balance payment via Paypal latest 3 days ahead of the tour date. Both RMB and hard currency are acceptable.