This 3 days China Silk Road tour perfectly covers the essence of Dunhuang including Mogao Caves and Crescent Spring-Echo Sand Mountain, with an in-depth exploration to local history, culture and landscapes. As we know, Mogao Grottoes is always the first impression of Dunhuang for the most tourists. In fact, there are also many other interesting sights worth-to-visit in this amazing city, like the splendid Yulin Grottoes, the ancient Suoyangcheng, the bustling Shazhou Night Market… In this tour, you will learn more about Dunhuang after the visit to both the famed and less-famed attractions.
- Day 1: Dunhuang Arrival & Dunhuang Tour (L)Crescent Spring and Echo Sand Mountain
Upon your arrival at Dunhuang airport/train station, the English speaking tour guide and driver will pick you up from the exit gate by holding a welcome board with your name.
After short rest, your exploration begins with the Crescent Spring and Echo Sand Mountain. Echo Sand Mountain and Crescent Spring are harmonious mates of miracle created by natural, glittering like a pearl along the Silk Road for thousands of years. The incredible co-existence between spring water and sand mountains always amazes visitors at their first sight here: the sand mountains meanders like a huge dragon and roars when wings blowing while the Crescent Spring, like a gentle maiden, is embraced in arms of mountains without being smudging. A life-time experience provided here as optional activity is camel ride at Echo Sand Mountain.
Friendly tip: There is camel ride available in the Echo Sand Mountain, if you would like to try it, please pay in cash on your own (around CNY100 /pax ). Of course yout tour guide will help to purchase tickets.
Accommodation: Overnight in Dunhuang
- Day 2: Dunhuang Tour (L)Yulin Grottoes, Suoyangcheng, Shazhou Night Market
Today the fist site will be Yulin Grottoes which locates in Jiuquan City, about 100km east away from Dunhuang city. Although not being as famous as Mogao Grottoes and Longmen Grottoes, Yulin Grottoes is rated highly and commented as a surprise by former visitors. It is the lower fame that makes the grottoes less visited and better protected. Engraved in North Wei Dynasty on the cliff of the Yulin River Valley, Yulin Grottoes looks extremely spectacular. The colorful wall paintings here will take you into another world with strong flavor of history and religion.
Afterwards, move on to Suoyangcheng. In the lengthy past, about 1380 years, Suoyangcheng had been a stage where the ethnic minorities of generations played the historic comedies and tragedies. The scenic area is a complex of historic relics and natural views, including ancient city relics, ancient temples, ancient tomb groups, ancient riverways and so on, gaining great fame with its diversified historic looks and rich content underneath.
Last, come to Shazhou Night Market. Though you might have visited many night markets or food streets during your weeks of vacation, Shazhou Night Market still brings something different for you. Mogao Caves visited in daytime put the most outstanding highlight of Dunhuang before you, Shazhou Night Market just takes you into the down-to-earth life of the local. Do you feel a pull from the strong perfume emitting from the stalls bathed in the dim lights and speed up towards the hawkers and carefully avoid the busy crowds? For sure, you will find the special vitality of this northwest city remoting from the country center during your leisure strolling.
Accommodation: Overnight in Dunhuang
- Day 3: Dunhuang Tour & Dunhuang Departure (L)Mogao Grottoes
Today you will head to the amazing Mogao Grottoes. As the existing anthology of Buddhist art with biggest scale and the best preservation in the world, Mogao Caves wins a fame of “the pearls of oriental art”. It keeps 735verns, about45,000 square kilometers frescoes, 2,415 painted sculpture, more than 4,000 flying Apsaras (the beautiful Bodhisattva in the Buddhism who has fair scent and does well in dancing and music), and 5 wooden constructions of Tang and Song Dynasty as well as thousands of Stone pillars and flagstones with lotus carving on them.
In the afternoon, you will be dropped off at Dunhuang airport / train station for departure.