14-Day from Xi’an to Kashgar

  • Duration: 14 days
  • Destinations:Xian, Dunhuang, Turpan, Korla, Kucha, Aksu, Taklamakan Desert, Hotan, Yarkand, Kashgar, Karakul Lake

  • Highlights:Exploring the Most Ancient historical cities along the Silk Road, stay with locals for better understanding their lifestyle.

Day 1
Arrive in Xi’an
Activities: Welcome you at the airport and transfer to your Hotel

Our professional, friendly local guide will meet you with experienced driver at the airport and transfer to your hotel. It takes about one hour from airport to your hotel . Rest of the day is your own time to explore this ancient city by yourself.
It is said that if you want to see 800 years of China’s history, visit Beijing; if you want to see 3000 years of China’s history go to Xi’an. The root of Chinese history and culture remains there. It used to be the ancient capital of many dynasties and the starting point of the Silk Road in China.
Day 2
Explore Xi’an for whole day
Activities: Visit Terra-Cotta Warriors; Bell Tower; Wild Goose Pagoda and Hui Mosque

After breakfast, we start our wonderful day tour by visiting Terra-Cotta Warriors which is one of the greatest archaeological discoveries of the 20th century. This site is about an hour drive from Xi’an city.
After lunch Visit Bell tower which is located in downtown area and is a Chinese traditional building and geographical center of the ancient capital, best preserved and largest wooden tower in China.
After spend an hour here then we move on to wild goose Pagoda which is a well preserved ancient holy building for Buddhism.
Finally visit Hui grand mosque located in Hui minority area, construction of the mosque has rich Chinese features combined with Arabic style. It is one of the oldest and largest mosque in China.
Day 3
Xi’an to Dunhuang
Activities: visit Xi’an City Wall and fly to Dunhuang after lunch

Our guide and driver will Wait for you at the hotel lobby and take you to Xian City Wall which is the symbol of Xi’an and the most ancient existing city wall in China until today. We spend a few hours to enjoy by walking around or riding bicycles as your like.
After lunch drive to Xi’an airport for your flight to Dunhuang. The airport is about 40km from the city and it takes about an hour by car. Our local guide and driver see you at Dunhaung airport and transfer to your Hotel.
Day 4
Dunhuang to Turpan
Activities: After breakfast visit the World heritage Mogao Grottoes, the echoing-sand dunes of the Ming Shan Mountains, Crescent Lake and Dunhuang Museum , then take overnight train to Turpan

After breakfast, we spend the whole morning at World heritage famous Mogao Grottoes which were constructed over a millennium ago, from the 4th to 14th centuries. The caves are also known as the Thousand Buddha Caves with two distinctions of being one of the most notable grottoes in China as well as the best-preserved treasure house of Buddhist art, sutras, murals and sculptures in the world.
After lunch we head to Dunhuang Museum which exhibits relics excavated from the local area, including paper and coins. The museum is also home to an excellent reconstruction of the Great Wall during the Han Dynasty.
Later Riding Camels, Sliding High Sand Dunes or simply walking around the mysterious Crescent Lake which no-one can explain the formation of such a geological wonder this would be a great experience. If you like you can stay till sunset and back to the hotel later.
at the end, Take overnight soft sleeper train to Turpan
Day 5
Turpan for whole day
Activities: visit Idikut (Gaochang) ancient city, Toyuq village, Bizeklik Thousand Buddha caves and Flaming Mountain

We start our exciting day in Turpan with a visit to the ancient city of Idikut (Gaochang). The city was first built in the first Century BC and later became capital of the Idikut (Gaochang) Uighur Kingdom in the 8th Century. We’ll enjoy seeing the ancient city for about one hour and then Move on to Toyuq village, an old, beautiful and timeless village with a friendly Uighur community. Here we visit several local families and have lunch with a local family at their home. This could be the highlight of your tour of the day.
After lunch we visit Bizeklik Thousand Buddha caves which used to be an important center for Buddhist worshipers under the Xizhou Huigu government of the Idikut (Gaochang) Kingdom.
On the way back to the hotel we will stop at the Flaming Mountain which people claimed to be hottest and driest along the silk road that “flying birds even a thousand miles away dare not to come”
Day 6
Turpan to korla
Activities: visit Yargul (Jiaohe) Ancient city, Karez underground Irrigation system and Emin Minaret. Drive to Korla after lunch

Following the breakfast at the Hotel we start our another wonderful day in Turpan. Our special itinerary today includes sightseeing in Turpan and drive to Korla after Lunch.
First we visit Yargul (Jiaohe) Ancient city which is one of the best preserved ancient cities in China. The ruins of the buildings are divided into temples, civilian dwellings and government offices. Workshops and residential houses are still visible and time there is a time spent in a long lost world.
After an hour of visiting around the ancient city, we’ll head to see the world famous Karez irrigation system, unique to this part of the world. The system is considered as one of the three great projects in China with the other two being the Great Wall and the Grand Canal.
Then visit Emin Suliman minaret which is a magnificent combination of ancient Uighur and Islamic architecture. It is the tallest ancient tower in Xinjiang and the only Islamic ancient minaret in the country. Locals call it “pure tower.”
After lunch we’ll leave from Turpan to korla. it is about 400km to Korla and it takes about 6 hours by car. Arrive in Korla in the evening and stay overnight
Day 7
Korla to Kucha (Kuqa)
Activities: Drive to Kucha (Kuqa) and visit Kucha old city , Grand Mosque, Bazar , Subash ancient city and Kizil Kagha Beacon tower

Leave for Kucha after breakfast and arrive by lunch time. After lunch we’ll spend time at Kucha old city area which is a lovely community of friendly Uighur people. The Kucha’s grand mosque is located in old city area and the mosque was built in the 17th Century and roof of the mosque was constructed with 300,000 eggs, cement and bricks.
Then we’ll visit the Ancient City of Subash dating from the 2nd -3rd Centuries as well as the ancient Kizil Kagha Beacon Tower which was once an ancient military outpost.
Day 8
Kucha (Kuqa) to Aksu
Activities: visit Tianshan Grand Canyon and Kizil Thousand Buddha caves, then drive to Aksu

After breakfast, Drive to Tianshan mysterious Grand Canyon which is about a little more than an hour drive from the Hotel. The canyon is attractive not only for its colors but also the shape of the mountains there. Today, Tianshan Great Canyon is regarded as one of the ten most beautiful Cayons in China.
Spend about two hours for hiking in the Canyon and then drive to Kizil Thousand Buddha caves which sit high on the cliffs over the Northern bank of the Muzat River, 75km (46miles) from Kucha city. It is one of the earliest treasure troves of Buddhist art as well as one of the four largest cave systems in China. In fact the caves were in use one century before the famous Mogao Grottoes of Dunhuang。
Then keep driving to Aksu and arrive by dinner time.
Day 9
Aksu to Hotan
Activities: Drive through second largest shifting desert Taklimakan

An early start today as we set out for Hotan after breakfast and drive into the desert highway. This desert highway was built from 2005 to 2007 and opened in 2008. Today we drive about 170km through local villages and 420kms on desert highway.
You’ll love this cross driving with the outstanding scenery of Sand dunes,we can stop whenever you like for photos, to walk around or whatever you like.
The word ‘Taklimakan’ means” Sea of Death “once you come in you can never go back”, This will certainly be an unforgettable part of your trip. We arrive in Hotan in the evening and check into the Hotel.
Day 10
Hotan for the whole day
Activities: Grand Market, Silk Fabric, Jade River, the old mosque and Shrine.

After breakfast, enjoy around Hotan grand Bazaar for a few hours; Then drive to Traditional Silk Fabric where you can see how to get the silk and weave into as textile in traditional way.
Then the day ends up with a visit to a 16th Century mosque in the Taklimakan desert around 30km away from Hotan city. There are several holy tombs around the mosque and everyday people from across the length and breadth of Xinjiang come here to pay a visit and pray. It is said the tomb belongs to a Muslim missionary who was a military officer in the 11th century AD. The tomb is very well known among the local Muslims and every May more than 10,000 people visit and do their congregational worship at the mosque there.
Optional tours for rest of the day : Carpet weaving workshop, Jade product workshop, Hotan Museum as you like.
Day 11
Hotan to Kashgar
Activities: Drive to Kashgar along the Jade Road and stop at Kaghilik and Yarkant towns for sight-seeing

Leave for Kashgar early in the morning. Stop at Kaghilik for lunch and see the Grand Mosque built in 17th Century. Then spend a few hours to enjoy the local culture and do some sightseeing in Yarkand. visit Golden Mosque (built in 1533) and its royal graveyard including several hundred years old tombs.
Yarkand became the capital of many Uighur Kingdoms in ancient times and was an important station on the old Silk Road. with a history of more than 2000 years.
Arrive in Kashgar in the evening and check into the Hotel
Day 12
Day trip to Karakul Lake
Activities: Drive along the KKH, Stop at Opal Village, Oytagh Kunlunshan Colorful mountain range, Gaz Valley and check point, Bulungkol Valley (white sand mountain), Karakul lake and local Kyrgyz family visit.

We set out along the Sino – Pakistan Karakorum Highway, on the Pamir plateau (the roof of the world)visit Karakul Lake (3600m above sea level). The lake sits at the foot of the notorious, Muztagh Ata (7546m) and Gongur (7719m) mountains. ‘Muztagh Ata’ means Father of the Ice Mountains and is one of the most beautiful and mysterious mountain in the world. Return late afternoon to Kashgar.
Day 13
Explore Kashgar city
Activities: Visit Grand mosque, Apak Hoja tomb (which is also called Fragrant Concubine Tomb), Old city walking tours, livestock market, Sunday market and dinner at a local Uighur family

Explore the rich, endless culture of the Uighurs in Kashgar. First enjoy the famous livestock market which happens only on every Sunday and people bring their horses, sheep, goats, camels,cows, bulls and other livestocks to the market from all the directions for sale. It provides a great opportunity to take photos of the faces of local people, enjoy the traditional local market culture, test-drive a donkey or a horse or even make its shoes. Like opening a window, today is a real glimpse into a time lost in the annals of the Silk Road’s past and an opportunity not to be missed.
Later move on to Sunday market main Bazaar which is considered one of the largest market in Central Asia. From fluffy sheepskin hats to rugged camel-hide boots, not to mention beads, buttons and buckets of locals. Everything – including plenty of kitchen sinks – is for sale at this fairytale bazaar. It is the best to chance to practice your bargaining skills.
After lunch, visit the Grand Id Kah mosque, the largest mosque in China and marvel at the intricate architecture of Kashgar’s historic Apak Hoja Tomb which is also known as Fragrant concubine tomb).
We’ll enjoy the Old Town of Kashgar by walk. walking is the best way to see and understand the ancient historical parts,streets,handicraft workshops and many more; enjoy a century-old Kashgar tea house atmoshpere for a short break. sitting by the locals and try various medicinal teas such as those containing rose, saffron, honey and many other ingredients.
Finally, we wrap up one day tour with a dinner at a local family which offers a great opportunity to deeply understand real local life, culture and traditions of Uighurs.
Day 14
Kashgar to your next destination
Activities: see you off at Kashgar airport

Today is the last day of your tour with us, so we hope this tour shouldn’t be the last. We strive to make every day of your time with us the one that you’ll always remember and if you’d like to book some other tours please Contact us for more information