16 Days China Ancient Silk Road Adventure

  • Tour Code:SK02
  • Tour Duration: 16 Days
  • Destination:Dunhuang, Jiayuguan, Lanzhou, Turpan, Urumqi, Wuwei, Xiahe, Xi'an, Zhangye
  • Tour overview:This journey follows the ancient Silk Route from its source in Xian, China, through an ever changing landscape. Along the China Silk Road we will visit Xiahe and the enormous Tibetan monastery at Labrang, the Buddhist frescos in the Mogao Caves and the serene 'Heaven Lake' deep in the Tian Shan mountains.

Day by Day Itinerary

Day 1 Arrive Xi‘an

Transfer via: Flight -on our arrangement            

Upon Arrival in Xi'an, you will be met and transferred to your hotel. Free for rest of the day.


Day 2 Xian (B,L)

Sightseeing: The Terra Cotta Warriors and Horses, Big Wild Goose Pagoda , Ancient City Wall       

Today you will experience the highlights of Xi’an. After breakfast, you will depart you’re your hotel. You will visit the amazing 2000-year-old Terra-cotta Warriors and Horses. Regarded as the 8th Wonder of the World, the Terra-cotta Warriors and Horses are the most significant archeological excavations of the 20th century. Over 2,200 years ago, the first emperor of China, Qin Shi Huang, ordered the construction of a vast army of Terra-cotta warriors in search of immortality. After his early death they were buried with him to protect his empire.

Another highlight today is the Big Wild Goose Pagoda. Situated in the south of Xian city, it is one of the main constructions in the famous Buddhist temple-Da-Ci-En Temple. There, the well-known Buddhist Master Xuanzang (Monk Tripitaka) stored his collection of classic Buddhist artifacts brought from India in Tang Dynasty. Now it is the Landmark of Xian.

Then, you will visit Ancient City Wall. You will experience a half-hour's hike along the Ancient City Wall. You will experience a half-hour's hike along the Ancient City Wall. It is the largest and best preserved present city wall in ancient China and is probably the best military battlement in the world. If you want to, you can rent a bicycle for a ride on top of the spectacular city wall. The wall was built in the Tang dynasty (618 -907) and enlarged in the Ming dynasty (1368-1644).

Day 3 Xian/Lanzhou (B,L)

Transfer via: Flight-on our arrangement 
Sightseeing: Shaanxi Provincial Historical Museum. Yellow River Bank Park.

This morning, you will visit the Shaanxi History Museum. It is a magnificent architectural complex in the Tang Dynasty style. The Museum possesses a treasure of 113,000 historic and cultural artifacts unearthed in Shaanxi, and it covers an area of 1,100 square meters for exhibition

Then, you will be transferred to airport to take flight to Lanzhou. Arrive in Lanzhou, be met and transferred to your hotel.

Day 4 Lanzhou/Xiahe (B,L)

Transfer via: Car-on our arrangement
Sightseeing: Liujia Gorge, Bingling Temple

This morning you will have the tour to Liujia Gorge. Located in Yongjing county is the Liujia Gorge on the Yellow River. Steep cliffs and towering mountains rise on either side of the river, and manifest their spectacular grandeur. It was there that a key water conservancy project was completed in 1974, for the purposes of irrigation, navigation, flood control, electric energy production, and aquatic resources utilization.

Then you will head to see Bingling Temple. Bingling Thousand Buddha Caves is located on the Small Jishi Hill, about 35 kilometers (about 22 miles) west of Yongjing County in Lanzhou City. Being one of the very noted four caves in China, it is the second to Mogao Caves in respect of artistic value.

After the visit, you will be drive to Xiahe by private car (around 5 hours).

Day 5 Xiahe/Lanzhou (B,L)

Transfer via: Car-on our arrangement
Sightseeing: Labrang Temple

Morning tour of the Labrang Temple. Labuleng Lamasery (or Labrang Monastery) of Xiahe is in the county town, built in 1710. It's one of the six most important leading lamaseries of the Yellow Hat Buddhist Sect in China, largest around Gansu, Qinghai and Sichuan. It is the greatest Lamasery institute with the richest collection of Buddhism scriptures

In the afternoon, you will be transferred back to Lanzhou.    

Day 6 Lanzhou/Wuwei (B,L)

Transfer via: Car-on our arrangement
Sightseeing: Han Tomb of Leitai, Confucius Temple,Haizang Temple

Today you will be driven to Wuwei (around 4 hours).

After a rest in your hotel, start the tour to Han Tomb of Leitai, which is located in the old Leitai Park of Wuwei. The tomb consists of 19.34 m long passage, 3 coffin chambers and 3 side chambers. There were 231 gold, silver, bronze, iron, jade, bone and pottery articles, and 99 bronze warriors and horses excavated from here, among which the Bronze Flying Horse is the most valuable.

Then, move on to the Confucius Temple, Confucious Temple, lies in the southeast of the city proper of Wuwei, was built in 1439, in the Ming Dynasty. It's a large-scale magnificent complex of palatial architecture. The temple has once been an institute for studying, the largest and best preserved one in Gansu.

Finally, you will visit the Haizang Temple, located 2km northwest of Wuwie city, is the largest complex of ancient buildings in Wuwei. The temple was opened as a park. The well preserved gateways, archways, pavilions and temples of Ming and Qing Dynasties are surrounded by river, lake and age-old trees, which make the park a quiet spot with its spectacular scenery.

Day 7 Wuwei/Zhangye (B,L)

Transfer via: Car-on our arrangement
Sightseeing: The Giant Buddha Temple, The Bell Tower and the Drum Tower

After breakfast, drive to Zhangye by private car (3.5 hours).

Arriv in Zhangye, visit to The Giant Buddha Temple, located in the southwest part of downtown of Zhangye, which is well known for the remains of  China's biggest indoor sculpture of Nirvana Buddha.

And then, you will see the Bell Tower and the Drum Tower, the biggest drum tower in the Hexi Corridor of the silk road district, was built in 1507 during the Ming Dynasty. In 1648 during the Qing Dynasty, it was destroyed by war. In 1668, Zhang Yong, the superintendent of Gansu, rebuilt the bell and drum tower.The tower consists of the foundation and a three-storey pavilion.

Day 8 Zhangye/Jiayuguan (B,L)

Transfer via: Car-on our arrangement
Sightseeing: Jiayuguan Pass,Wei-jin Mural Tombs,Suspension Great Wall

This morning, you will be drive from Zhangye to Jiayuguan (around 3.5 hours) .

And then visit Jiayuguan Pass, Located in the western end of Hexi Corridor in Gansu Province, Jiayuguan Pass is the main part of the western end of the Great Wall built in the Ming Dynasty. It has been the first pass of Hexi region since ancient times.

Wei-jin Mural Tombs
,Located about 15 kilometers northeast of Jiayuguan, Wei-Jin Mural Brick Tomb is a big tomb group with over 1,400 tombs built between the 3rd Century and 5th Century during the Wei and Jin dynasties. Renowned as the largest subterranean art gallery in the world, housing a great deal of colorful murals, the gallery has attracted tourists from both home and abroad since 1972 when it was excavated. Most tombs are of families, housing bodies of three or four generations, and now only Grave 6 and Grave 7 are open for tourism.

Suspension Great Wall,
was built during the Ming Dynasty (1368-1644). Work began on it in 1539, and was completed in the following year. It was built using layer upon layer of stone and yellow earth. In subsequent years, the wall has dwindled from its original length of 1.5 kilometers (0.93 miles) to its current 750 meters (2, 460 feet).The Overhanging Wall gets its name because there is a 231 meter long section, with an obliquity of 45 degrees, built onto a 150m high ridge. From a distance, it is said to resemble a dragon about to extend its body towards the ground.                                                   

Day 9 Jiayuguan/Dunhuang (B,L)

Tranfer via: Car-on our arrangement       

Morning travel on a scenic ride to the 2,000-year-old oasis town of Dunhuang (around 5 hours). After check in the hotel, free at leisure the rest of the day.

Day 10 Dunhuang (B,L)

Sightseeing: Mogao Grottoes, Crescent Lake, Echoing-Sand Dune                                   

You will have tours to the Mogao Caves, the caves hold the world's richest treasure house of Buddhist sutras, murals and sculptures. And, you will experience a short camel-riding along the Echoing-Sand Dune to the Crescent Lake, who is a nature miracle coexist with the desert for thousand of years. The lake and the Echoing-Sand Dune which can make sounds when the wind passes are located in the place where the sand and the oasis meet.


Day 11 Dunhuang/Turpan (B,L)

Transfer via: Overnight train-on our arrangement
Sightseeing: Dunhuang City Museum

Morning visit to Dunhuang City Museum and Dunhuang city tour. The Dunhuang Museum is located in the downtown area of Dunhuang City. It is situated in a three storey building which covers an area of 2,400 square meters (about 25,834 square feet). In front of the museum stand a group of carved figures depicting people leading their camels as they travel along the Silk Road.

After the tours, be transferred to the Liu Yuan railway station for the overnight train from Dunhuang to Turpan by soft sleeper.


Day 12 Turpan ( L)

Sightseeing: Jiaohe Ruins,Karez Well, Grape Valley

Early morning arrive in Turpan, be met and transferred to your hotel in Turpan. After a short rest, start the city tour to s explore the Jiaohe Ruins, the remains of an ancient walled capital of the Uighur with its large monastery and palace. It is probably the same size as Gaochang but better preserved. UNESCO has contributed to its preservation. The dry weather has helped city preserve its cityscape. It is a life-sized model of a Tang Dynasty city.

Move on to visit Ancient Karez system.The entire Turpan region has for 2000 years relied upon the Karez underground irrigation system for sustenance; There is currently one karez well site open for exhibition. It is complete with a museum of displays and pictures. It is a good way to get an understanding of how the tunnels were dug.

Then we will proceed to visit Grape Valley. Lying at the base of the western end of Flaming Mountains, Grape Valley is a unique world of vineyards and fruit trees. you can sit in the shades and sip the local wines to kill a brutally hot afternoon.

Day 13 Turpan (B,L)

Sightseeing: Astana Tomb,Passing by Flaming Mountain to Visit the Bezkelik Thousand Buddha Caves,Sugong Pagoda  

Today you will visit to The Astana Tomb, which is located in the Gobi Desert and 6km from the Gaochang Ancient City. Astana means capital in Uygur. Covering an area of 10 square kilometers, the tombs were the public cemetery of the ancient Gaochang residents, both aristocrats and commoners.

Passing by Flaming Mountain to Visit the Bezkelik Thousand Buddha Caves, Once an important Buddhist site with many caves covered with brightly painted murals, Bezeklik means "place of paintings" in Uighur. The caves were hewn into the cliffside, and large murals, Monks used to live inside the caves and the frescoes here clearly represent the life work of generations of devotees. Unfortunately, this place was damaged by the locals who converted to Islam in the 10th century and looted by the western archaeologists in the early 20th century.

Move on to visit Emin Minaret. The Emin Minaret also called Sugong Pagoda is located 2km east of Turpan city. The whole place is composed of the pagoda and a mosque. The Emin minaret tower was built in 1778 by the local Muslim ruler, Emin Hoja. The minaret was built in a simple Islamic style, 44 meters in height, and 10 meters in diameter at the base. Be transferred to the railway station to take overnight train to Dunhuang.

Day 14 Turpan/Urumqi (B,L)

Transfer via:Car-on our arrangement
Sightseeing: Heavenly Lake, boat cruising

This morning, you will take three hours' ride from Turpan to Urumchi. After lunch, you will head to visit the Heavenly Mountain (Tianchi); it is surrounded by green pastures and pristine conifer forests. Snowy Alp-like peaks soar to great heights and enclose the lake. Take a boat ride on Heavenly Lake and escape into a peaceful, dream-like world.  

Transferred back to the city of Urumqi.

Day 15 Urumqi (B,L)

Sightseeing: Nanshan Pasture, Terai Camp                             

Today you will explore the Nanshan Pasture. The Nanshan Pasture is located in Kelawucheng Mountain, a branch of north Heavenly Mountain. Moreover, there are numerous valleys in the pasture. It is cool here in the summer, and is a good place to get away from the heat. You can ride a horse or a camel running through the valleys, walk across the woods picking mushrooms and enjoying the magical wild flowers, you also can climb up the mountain to overlook.

Then continue to visit the Terai Camp to experience the Kazak nomadic life and taste delicious Xinjiang Cruise – milk tea and mutton.  

Day 16 Urumqi (B)

Transfer via: Flight-on our arrangement             

Free at leisure until be met and transferred to the airport for the flight to your destination.

Tour Price

1. Normally hotels allow a maximum of 3 adults per room with an extra bed, at extra charge. Some hotels will allow three adults and a small child.
2. Tour price is indicative only, please enquire for a detailed quotation.
3. More people more discounts. Please enquire for more details.