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Silk Road in Xinjiang

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The Silk Road in Xinjiang is a classic route covering top tourist highlights in Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region in China.

Understand[edit]

Here are something good to know for tourists when they are on the road to Xinjiang, such as climate[2], food, drink, accommodation, transportation and customs of the kazakhs, the khalkhas, the tajiks, the uyghurs and more ethnic minorities in that area.

Prepare[edit]

Before travelers go, please learn about the guide information as much as possible or just contact with a Local Xinjiang travel consultant (The Silk Road China), Xinjiang, (), [1].  edit who operates this tour route and tell travelers what to pack, what to see and more.

Get in[edit]

By plane: Fly to Dunhuang from anywhere in China. More than 10 cities such as Xian, Urumqi, Lanzhou, Jiayuguan, Hangzhou, Shanghai, Chengdu, Beijing in China have domestic direct flights to Dunhuang, the into Xinjiang.


By train: Xinjiang is connected with the rest of China by Lanxin railway. All trains go through Dunhuang Liuyuan Station into Xinjiang. Direct train runs from Beijing, Shanghai, Guangzhou, as well as most other cities. A trip from Beijing to Urumqi is scheduled to take slightly over 33 hours. There are also two international trains weekly to Kazakhstan.

Go/Walk/Drive/...[edit]

Sites Visited: Shazhou Night Market Our nice guide will meet you at the airport and be transferred to the Hotel. Shazhou Night Market, It is not only famous for its tasty snacks and local specialties but also for its well-regulated management. The whole night market is 1000 meters long in total. There are shops selling handworks and souvenirs, food stalls and fruit stands. When the fruit season comes, visitors can buy juicy fruits at reasonable prices.guide will meet you at the airport, check in the hotel upon arrival. And visit the Shazhou night market.


Sites Visited: Mogao Caves, Echoing-Sand Mountain and the Crescent Lake, Camel Riding Mogao Grottoes, Constructed over a millennium, from the 4th to the 14th centuries, the caves hold the world's richest treasure house of Buddhist sutras, murals and sculptures.Cameras are not permitted.

Echoing-Sand Mountain, Crescent Moon Spring is 6km south of Dunhuang in the Singing Sands Mountains and is quite literally an oasis in the desert. The spring's name derives from the crescent moon shape taken by the small pool of spring water between two large sand dunes. Although the area is very dry, the pool doesn't dry up as one might expect.

Train infos (overnight soft sleeper with good aircondition, 4 berths in one compartment)


  • Day 3 Turpan

Sites Visited: Bezklik Grottoes, Astana Tombs, Meet guide at train station, drive to Turpan (40mins).check in the hotel.,Visit Astana Tombs, the Flaming Mountain, Bezklik Grottoes and Local Uyger family in the Vineyard.

Astana Tombs: covering an area of 10 square kilometers, the Astana Tombs are the graveyard of the residents lived in the Gaochang City in the Jin-Tang times, including large sized family graveyard. had been excavated 13 times, a great number of cultural relics have been unearthed, Known as “the Underground Museum.

Bezklik Grotto: "Bezeklik"means "a place with beautiful decoration". There are 83 numbered caves; among them 40 preserved murals totaling 1200 square meters. In some caves one can find that Buddhish murals are painted on Manichean murals.


  • Day 4 Turpan to Urumqi (190kms 2.5hrs driving)

Sites Visited: Jiaohe Ruined city, Karez Irrigation system, Sugong Minerat AM visit Jiaohe Ruined city, Karez Irrigation system, Sugong Minerat; Back to Urumqi after lunch in Turpan Check in the hotel, visit Erdaoqiao & International Bazaar, Jiaohe Ruins, running from northwest to southeast, 1760 meters long and 300 meters across at the widest part. The city includes city gates, streets and lanes, government office, temples, domestic houses, cave houses, wells, and an underground temple.

Karez Irrigation System,which, taking advantage of the slopes, draws the underground water to flow by itself to irrigate farmland. It consists of four parts: vertical wells, underground channels, ground canals and small reservois.

Sugong Minerat, theTower was built in the 41st year of the Qianlong period of the Qing Dynasty,It is an embodiment of the ancient architectural arts of the Uygur nationality. The body of the tower is cylindroid in shape, built with bricks arranged in various symmetrical patterns on the outer wall. Erdaoqiao Market & International Bazaar.. You'll find a bustling market filled with fruit, clothing, crafts, knives, carpets and almost anything that you can imagine.Here is the most welcomed place by tourist especialy by ladies where they can buy some traditional yugur make up cosmetic.


Sites Visited: Xinjiang Museum, Heavenly Lake Visit Xinjiang Museum, Heavenly Lake & boat cruise on the lake. PM around 17:00 take the flight to Kashgar and check in the hotel upon arrival. Xinjiang Museum the museum is the main institution to collect and investigate the unearthed cultural relics and specimens in Xinjiang. There are more than 50 thousand pieces of various kinds of cultural relics stored in the museum, among them, the ancient mummies represented by ‘the Loulan Beauty', manuscripts in Chinese, Kharosthi, Qiuci, Yanji, Tibetan, Uigurian and other characters prevailed in ancient Westen Regions, the silk ,wool, cotton and hemp fabrics and folk rainment, etc., are unusual tidbits in the world.

Heavenly Lake covering an area of about 5.9 square kilometers. There are eight beautiful scenic spots in the lake scenic area, they are "A Ray of Stone Gate", "Dragon's Pool and Green Moon", "Magic Needle for Guarding the See", "Three Stones Bearing the Sky".


  • Day 6 Kashgar

Sites Visited: Karakul Lake (200kms 3 hrs driving) After breakfast take the drive on the China and Pakistan highway to visit the Karakul Lake and enjoy the Pamir landscape. Karakul Lake At an altitude of 3,600 m. it is the highest lake of the Pamir plateau, near the junction of the Pamir, Tianshan and Kunlun Mountain ranges. Surrounded by mountains which remain snow-covered throughout the year, the three highest peaks visible from the lake are the Muztag Ata (7546m), Kongur Tagh (7,649m) and Kongur Tiube (7,530 m).


  • Day 7 Kashgar

Sites Visited: Sunday Bazaar, Id Kah Mosque, Old Town, Apak Hoja Tomb, Handicraft Street Sunday Bazaar (livestock Market)Streets near this big market are choked on Sundays with farmers and buyers arriving by donkey cart, truck, bicycle, horseback, ute, motorbike or on foot, with their animals. It's loud, lively and cheerful as they arrive, eat breakfast, set up their animals and check out the action. Cattle, sheep (they definitely look different), goats, donkeys, horses have their own sections; sellers show their animals are "good eaters"(most go as livestock not meat) and the entire experience is fascinating and fun.

Id Kah Mosque It is the large Mosque in China and most famous one in Xinjiang. The Mosque started to build in the mid of fifteenth century, and has gradually developed to the present size..The buildings of Id Kah Mosque look magnificent and solemn , and display the artistic styles of Islamic mosque architectures. Apak Hoja Tomb This Mazar is the holiest place in Xinjiang and an architectural treasure . Built in 1640 , it is reminiscent of the Central Asian artistic style of Samarkand or Isfahan.It most complete Islamic tomb of the Qing Dynasty up-to-now in China.

Old town Kashgar is an ancient city, and in walking the streets of its Old Town, will provide a sense of what this legendary Central Asian hub was like in the days when the Silk Road was at its zenith. 500-year old remnants of the city wall, narrow lanes and colorful multi-ethnic crowds combine to make Kashgar's historic district a highlight of any visit to the city.

Handicraft street Streets near this big market are choked on Sundays with farmers and buyers arriving by donkey cart, truck, bicycle, horseback, Ute, motorbike or on foot, with their animals. It's loud, lively and cheerful as they arrive, eat breakfast, set up their animals and check out the action. Cattle, sheep (they definitely look different), goats, donkeys, horses have their own sections; sellers show their animals are "good eaters"(most go as livestock not meat) and the entire experience is fascinating and fun.


  • Day 8 Kashgar

After breakfast you will be transferred to the airport and take the flight back to your destination.

Stay safe[edit]

Theft: Xinjiang is home to a lively bazaar culture where anything and everything is traded. But hordes of people crammed into confined spaces also present a prime opportunity for pickpockets, who often operate in teams and can be very efficient at what they do. Be very careful with your valuables when you are out and about. As a foreign traveller you are a prime target.

Counterfeit notes: Be careful when paying with 100 yuan notes in smaller restaurants or shops. The owner may switch the note with a counterfeit one and claim that you gave him/her a fake note. You should also check your notes when you are returned your hotel deposit.

Get out[edit]

Fly from Kashgar to Beijing. Xinjiang borders eight countries, making it ideal for exploring the surrounding countries. Korgas and Alashankou lead to Kazakhstan, the Torugart and Irkeshtam passes lead to Kyrgyzstan, the Kulma pass leads to Tajikistan, and the Karakorum Highway leads south to Pakistan . You can get visas for Kazakstan and Kyrgystan in Urumqi.

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