Welcome to Kashagr, the historical city on the ancient Silk Road. Upon arrival, you will be met and transferred to hotel. Enjoy your free time if you arrive early.
Today is a busy day to explore Kashagr with a local guide. You will take the city tour by the the first stop to visit the Apa Hoja Mausoleum which was built in 1640 by local Imam for his father, and later it became a family graveyard to bury 72 people for 5 generations. The mausoleum is impressive for its delicate Uyghur architectural style including the blue tiles, the dome and the minaret.
Next, you will visit Kashgar old town to explore the intersting area where there are old houses for shops, workshops, restaurants, bakery, and tea houses etc. It displays the long history and vivid lifestyle in Kashgar from ancient Silk Road period to today. Handicraft Street is a must-see section in the old town, where the huge music instruments and bronze vessels are very impressive. You might taste some local snacks here, such as Nang Bread, grilled eggs, dried fruits etc. before visiting the old Id Ghar Mosque, the biggest mosque in Xinjiang. Enter the mosque at non-praying time to appreciate its architecture and decor, please wear long pants and cover the shoulders for ladies while visiting this mosque.
Lunch is arranged at a local Uyghur's house for you to taste the authentic and traditional Uyghur food including nang bread, hand-stretched noodles, and pilau...etc.
In the afternoon, you will wander around the Grand Bazaar in Kashgar, which is well known in Central Asia for its colorful and lively market. As a Uyghur saying goes that you can buy everything except for your parents. There are more people in the afternoon, because the farmers will drive to here from different area in the morning and buy things in the afternoon at the market. Actually the bazaar opens every day, and more people on Sunday. The animal bazaar is relocated near Kashgar Airport and opens only on Sundays. If it is Sunday, you will also visit the Animal Bazaar.
When your tour is finished, you will be transferred back to Kashgar airport to catch flight to Urumqi. Upon arrival, transferred to hotel.
This morning you will take 1-hour ride to Heavenly Lake, or Tianchi in Chinese, which is a high mountain lake with stunning scenery in the Tianshan Mountains. After lunch, you will visit the renown Xinjiang Museum that is famous for the well-preserved mummies, particularly Loulan Beauty and Xiaohe Princess.
Afterwards you will take 3-hour car ride to Turpan via the desert, grassland, and Tianshan highway.
Turpan is a hub on the ancient Silk Road, and there are lots of historical sites that are renowned for its well-preserved conditions. Today you will visit Bezklik Grottos, Astana Ancient Tombs, the Ancient City of Jiaohe and Gaochang, Karez Irrigation System, and Emin Minaret with a local guide. You will taste some dried fruits and eat Uyghur food.
Take 3.5-hour bullet train from Turpan to Liuyuan, where you will take 2-hour car ride to Dunhuang. Wander around the Minsha Shan or Singing Sand Dunes this afternoon, and view the crescent spring in the dunes.
It is nice to eat or wander around the Dunhuang night market this evening. Or you can watch the performance copied from Mogao Caves.
In the morning, you will visit Mogao Caves, the gem of the ancient Silk Road. The early history of Mogao can be tracked back to the 4th century, and built many times in the histoty. The colorful fresco, statues in Mogao Caves display various stories about Buddhism.
After lunch, you will take 5-hour car ride to Jiayuguan via the western Hexi Corridor. Enjoy the sceney on the way for Gobi Desert, oasis towns, and snow-capped Qilian Mountains.
Visit Jiayuguan Fort in the morning. Then you will be transferred to Jiayuguan airport to catch your flight back to your destination.
Note: Please book the flight departing after 1 pm from Jiayuguan.
Group Size: 1--15 pax
Travel Season: Year around
Accommodation: 5-star hotel (4-star in Turpan)
Transport: Chartered car or bus
Train: High speed train (First Class)
Flight: Kashgar/Urumqi (Economy)
Meals: Listed in the itinerary
Entrance fees: Sites listed
Guide: English-speaking local guides
You must apply China Visa before your tour.