As two of the main cities of the old Hexi Corridor on Silk Road, Lanzhou and Zhangye are the not-to-miss places for anyone to Gansu Province boasting thousand-year histories as well as rich landscapes. This 4-day tour connected by a 4.5-hour high-speed train will definitely bring you a life-time experience of the marvelous Huanghe River Custom Tourist Line, Binglingsi Grottoes, The Rainbow Mountain, Zhangye Giant Buddha Temple, Matisi Grottoes. You would have chance to see the great Mother River of China, Huanghe River!
- Day 1: Lanzhou Arrival & Lanzhou Tour (L)Huanghe River Custom Tourist Line
Upon your arrival at Lanzhou 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, follow your guide to visit Huanghe River Custom Tourist Line, which is considered as “the Bund of Lanzhou City”, taking Zhongshan Bridge as the axis to stretch out along the Yellow River. The sites to visit of the Tourist Line are distributed on the Road River, including Yellow River Mother Sculpture, Zhongshan Iron Bridge, White Pagoda Hill Park, Waterwheel Park and so on. A leisure strolling bathed in rosy light of dusk on the River Road is a top thing to do in Lanzhou.
After that, transfer to downtown hotel for check in.
Accommodation: Overnight in Lanzhou
- Day 2: Lanzhou-Binglingsi Grottoes-Zhangye (B, L)Binglingsi Grottoes
After breakfast, drive around 1.5 hours to visit Binglingsi Grottoes which is a series of grotto complex featured in Buddhist elements and engraved on the mountain cliffs. Considering Binglingsi Grottoes stands on the cliff along Liujiaxia reservoir, people need to take a speedboat to approach the grottoes to have a better visit. The boat thrilling travels through the breath-taking landscape offering a delicious appetizer for travelers, later on, the climax is coming when you walking closely to those giant statues with vivid shapes and walling paintings in bright color, deeply dazzling each visitor.
After the visit, you will head to Lanzhou train station for high-speed train to Zhangye. The train rides around 4.5 hours, you can take this chance to rest on the train or enjoy the scenery on the way. Arrival at Zhangye train station, you will find the local driver waiting for you at the exit gate by holding a board with your name. Later, check into local hotel.
Accommodation: Overnight in Zhangye
- Day 3: Zhangye Danxia National Geological Park Tour (B, L)The Rainbow Mountain Scenic Area,The Ice Valley Mountain Scenic Area
Today you will fully enjoy the highlight of Zhangye Danxia National Geological Park. The Danxia landform earns the most spotlight for Zhangye City. Rated as one of “10 Wonders of Nature in the World” in 2011 by National Geographic News, it does deserve the reputation. There are two main scenic area of the Zhangye Danxia with different features.
Firstly, come to visit The Rainbow Mountain Scenic Area which locates in Linze County, features in its bright color and is better to enjoy sunset which chosen by most travelers. Seen from the high platform, the rising layers of mountains in beautiful red with different saturation is bathed in rosy sunlight, depicting a gorgeous picture for the visitors who trudged a lot to here.
In the afternoon, move on to The Ice Valley Mountain Scenic Area, read Binggou Mountain in Chinese, earns its fame mainly with its graceful shapes. Usually, people come here for sunrise scenery. Although the color of hills here are not as bright as Rainbow Mountain, the unique form here easily excites people’s imagination to enjoy the natural masterpiece in another way.
Accommodation: Overnight in Zhangye
- Day 4: Zhangye Tour & Zhangye Departure (B, L)Zhangye Giant Buddha Temple, Matisi Grottoes
In the morning, you will further explore Zhangye by visiting Zhangye Giant Buddha Temple. Built in Western Xia Dynasty, the Giant Buddhist Temple had survived from the vicissitudes and stands on Silk Road for 900 years. There is a gigantic sleeping Buddha statue of Sakyamuni with the largest scale in Asia inside the temple, hence the name. The beautiful woodcarving, paintings and statues as well as the underneath culture and history impresses travelers a lot.
After that, continue your visit to Matisi Grottoes. Joined with Mogao Caves and Yulin Grottoes in Dunhuang, is famed as “Three Artistic Grottoes of Hexi Corridor”. You will amaze at the incredible combination of Buddhist temple and mountain grottoes here: the large elegant temple stands against the hill where plenty of grottoes were engraved. Another luminous point of Mati Temple is that it embraces both Han Buddhism and Tibetan Buddhism at meantime which you will discover in the visit here.
Finishing the sightseeing, you will head to Zhangye airport / train station for departure.