OVERVIEW

It is an amazing province, Xinjiang! It is well-known for its spectacular history and landscape attracting travelers to explore. This is a 8-day budge tour to travel from Kashgar to Karakul Lake, Taxkorgan, Turpan, Urumqi, and Tianchi by overnight train and car. You will enjoy the adventure on the amazing land on a budget way.

ITINERARY

Day 1Arrival Kashgar

Welcome to Kashgar, an old city on the ancient Silk Road. Today is arrival day. You can check in the hotel in Kashgar with your ID. Please contact us if you need airport or railway station transfer.

Transport: N/A
Accommodation: Overnight in Kashgar

Day 2Kashgar to Karakul & Taxkorgan by car(320KM 6H)

Today you will take a car ride to the Pamir Plateau. Firstly, the red mountains on the China-Pakistan Friendshp Highway is amazing. Then the White Sand Lake beside the snow-capped mountains is impressively pretty. At lunch time, you will arrive at the Karakul Lake, which is situated by the renowned Muztag Ata, the father of Ice. Karakul Lake is a beautiful mountain lake with altitude nearly 3600 meters. It is a stunning scenery to view the lake and the snow-capped mountains at the same time.

The Kirgiz are local people living in the houses and yurts near the lake.

Later, you will continue the driving to Taxkorgan that is situated at the border between China and Pakistan, where there are Tajik people living here. Tonight you will stay in a hotel with the altitude around 3300 meters. 

You could taste the yak hot pot for your dinner.

Transport: Private vehicle
Accommodation: Overnight in Tashkurgan
Meals: Breakfast

Day 3Taxkorgan back to Kashagr by car (320KM 6H)

Enjoy the small town scenery in Taxkorgan this morning, then you will visit the Stone City that was built 2000 years ago, and the ruin still can trace back its original style. It said the stone city used to be the small state in the history in the ancient Silk Road.

Moreover, you will also view the grassland on the Paimr Plateau, where there are yaks, sheep and horses etc.

Later, you will take a car ride back to Kashgar.

Transport: Private vehicle
Accommodation: Overnight in Kashgar
Meals: Breakfast

Day 4Kashgar City Tour, then overnight train to Turpan

It is a busy day today to explore Kashgar with a local guide. You will visit Apa Hoja Mausoleum this morning, which is a family cemetery with stunning blue tiles shining in the sun. Then you will visit the Grand Bazaar that is the biggest market in central Asia to sell all sorts of things. Later, you will visit the Kashgar old town where you will view the traditional houses and shops, workshop etc. 

Afterwards you will wander along the handicraft street in the Kashgar old town where there are music instruments, utensils and caps etc. Visit the Id Ghar Mosque, which is the biggest mosque in Xinjiang. 

If it is Sunday, you will visit Animal Bazaar that opens only on Sundays.

Later, you will be transferred to Kashgar railway station to catch 13-hour overnight train to Turpan.

Transport: Car/Taxi + Train
Accommodation: Overnight on the hard sleeper train
Meals: Breakfast

Day 5Sightseeing in Turpan: Kumtag Desert, Bezklik Grottoes, Flaming Mountain, Jiaohe

Turpan is a wonderful place to learn the history about the Silk Road by visiting the historical attractions. Turpan used to be the hub of the business on the ancient Silk Road. Due to its dry climate, there are many ruins and relics that are preserved very well.

Today you will visit Kumtag Desert in Shanshan, to enjoy the fun to walk on the sand.

Then you will visit Bezklik Grottos that is situated in the Flaming Mountain, which still can see the colorful frescos in the caves.

Later, you will view the Jiaohe City Ruin that is a clay city and abandoned about 700 years ago, but you still can see the well-preserved houses and lanes.

Time permiting, you can visit either Karez or Emin Minaret before check in the hotel.

Transport: Private vehicle
Accommodation: Overnight in Turpan

Day 6Turpan to Urumqi by car or bullet train

Today is free day in Turpan. You can explore Turpan Bazaar, or Turpan Museum, or enjoy your free time in the hotel. Then you will catch 3-hour car ride or 1-hour bullet train ride from Turpan to Urumqi.

Upon arrival, you will be transferred to Urumqi hotel.

Transport: Vehicle or Bullet Train
Accommodation: Overnight in Urumqi
Meals: Breakfast

Day 7Urumqi to Heavenly Lake, then back to Urumqi

Today you will take one-hour car ride to Heavenly Lake, or Tianchi in Chinese, which is a high-mountain lake located in the valley of Tianshan Mountains. Inscribed on the list of natural heritage by UNESCO, Tianchi is a well-known attraction near Urumqi. You will take the sightseeing bus to the hill, then view the impressive lake with the snow-capped mountains. There are some kazak yurts on the hills, these white tents make a stunning picture with the green lake and mountains.

Later, you will be transferred back Urumqi after sightseeing.

Transport: Vehicle
Accommodation: Overnight in Urumqi
Meals: Breakfast

Day 8Departing from Urumqi

Today is departure day, you can depart as per your flight time, but check out by 2pm from your hotel. Please contact us if you need airport transfer.

Transport: N/A
Accommodation: N/A
Meals: Breakfast

INCLUDED

- Local guide

- 3-star hotel 6 nights (Half room per person)

- Overnight hard sleeper train Kashgar/Turpan

- Public bus or private car 

- Entrance fees 

- 6 Chinese breakfasts

EXCLUDED

- Dinners and lunches

- Arrival/Departure transfer

- China Visa 

- Gratuity

TRIP NOTES

Tour duraton: 8 days

Difficulty: Easy

Group size: Min 2 - Max 15

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The tour can be tailored.