5 Days Xinjiang Highlights Tour with Urumqi and Turpan

Looking for a short Xinjiang tour of the essential attractions? This 5-day tour departing from Urumqi, including both cultural relics and natural landscapes like Heavenly Lake, Bezeklik Thousand Buddha Caves, Jiaohe Ruins as well as Xinjiang Bazaar, will take you to deeply trace the brilliant culture in the old Urumqi and Turpan. Of course you would have enough chance to taste the local foods!

Highlights of this tour:
*Immerse yourself in the breathtaking scenery in Heavenly Lake.
*Trace Xinjiang’s history and culture in Xinjiang Regional Museum.
*Learn about the Buddhist culture in Bezeklik Thousand Buddha Caves and Sugong Pagoda.
*Appreciate the amazing and magical tourist sites—Tuyugou Valley and Karez Well.
*With private driver and English guide, as well as our 10+ years experience, you will love your tour and completely feel the magic of this wonderland.

  • Private transfers + Guide + Driver + Accommodation + Lunch + Entrance tickets
  • Yes
5 Days Xinjiang Highlights Tour with Urumqi and Turpan
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  1. Day 1: Urumqi Arrival (No meal)

    Upon your arrival at Urumqi airport/train station, our local driver will pick you up from the exit gate by holding a welcome board with your name and transfer to local hotel for check-in. Free and easy on your own for rest of the day.

    Accommodation: Overnight in Urumqi

  2. Day 2: Urumqi Classic Tour (B, L)
    Heavenly Lake, Xinjiang Regional Museum, Xinjiang International Bazaar

    After hotel breakfast, meet your guide at hotel lobby and your exploration begins! The first site will be Heavenly Lake of Tianshan Mountain. Heavenly Lake, read Tianchi Lake in Chinese, is an alpine lake nestled against the slope of the snow-covered Bodga Mountain. Heat, the special feature coming with summer is seldom there due to its geographical conditions. Looking out over the scenic area, the white snowy mountains mirroring in the green lake and colorful flowers spotted on the green grassland along the lake, plus the tour guide’s commentary to the tale of Queen Mother of the West bringing it some color of mystery, both your eyes and souls will be fully pleased by the pure beauty here.

    Afterwards, move on to Xinjiang Regional Museum.As the only autonomous region class museum in Xinjiang, Xinjiang Regional Museum houses over 40,000 collections including all kinds of relics and specimens, exhibited in five separate halls. You can find many treasures ever glittering on the famous Silk Road. The No.1 star exhibition in the museum is the unprecedented ancient corpse with even tiny fingernails well preserved.

    Then, come to Xinjiang International Bazaar for further sightseeing. It’s one of the bazaars with largest scale in the world with strong Islam flavor in its buildings. You should not miss this site during your tour to Urumqi, even if you are not going for shopping, you would favor the experience for the strong ethnic flavor here. Eyes are dazzled by an overwhelming of goods in the stalls while ears are excited by the hawking, bewildering you if you are travel through space and time to the ancient silk road to glimpse the prosperous trades between different nations.

    Accommodation: Overnight in Urumqi

    Heavenly Lake

  3. Day 3: Urumqi-Turpan Tour (B, L)
    Tuyugou Valley, Bezeklik Thousand Buddha Caves, Flaming Mountains

    Today you will head to Turpan. The driving lasts around 3 hours, you can enjoy the scenery on the way, and talk with your guide for more background information and stories about Turpan, the amazing city.

    After an early lunch in a local restaurant, your exploration begins with Tuyugou Valley. Tuyugou Valley Scenic Area locates at 55km away from southeast Turpan, composed by three major parts: Tuyugou Valley, Tuyugou Thousand Buddha Caves and Mazha Village. It’s a melting pot of different religions, history and culture since the remote old days. As you know, mysterious tales always comes with “ancient”, the old folk village and the Buddha grottoes with rich stories sublimates the surface natural beauty of the valley beyond doubt.

    Later, continue your visit to Bezeklik Thousand Buddha Caves, nestled on the Flaming Mountainside, had been the most beautiful and important grottoes along the Silk Road. As the imperial temple and grottoes of Gaochang Kingdom, the incredible value of Bezeklik Thousand Buddha Caves incurred the terrible loot and destruction from foreign explorers. Although the existed caves here are broken in some degree, how gorgeous the original paintings were still could be imagined from the only remaining parts. You will read the meaningful culture exchange emerging together with Silk Trade Route on some preserved caves.

    Afterwards, move on to the Flaming Mountains. You agree that Flaming Mountains completely deserves the name when you behold that the mountain body is in fire-baked red like a rising flame. People start to marvel at this place from the huge thermometer standing in its entrance gate and showing the real-time temperature there. “Hot” is the only theme. An interesting phenomenon here is that you bury an egg into the sands here, a few minutes later, you can eat it! Amazing, right?

    A warm notice especially for the tour there: Please take hats, umbrellas, sun glass, sun creams and things like that are recommended as you will be exposed directly under the heat for hours without shelter.

    Accommodation: Overnight in Turpan

    Bezeklik Thousand Buddha Caves

  4. Day 4: Turpan-Urumqi Tour (B, L)
    Karez Well, Sugong Pagoda, Jiaohe Ruins

    Today you will further explore the cultural Turpan with your guide! The first stop will be Karez Well, which is a special Irrigation System distributed in Turpan area, sharing the same fame with Great Wall as “Great Human Engineering”. With a little rainfall volume yearly, it’s almost impossible for Turpan to use water in the surface to irrigate farmland. However, Turpan locates in a basin embraced by the snowy mountains around, so, fortunately, it is rich in water resources underground. Local people brought into full play the tilted terrain of the basin, dug many Karez and connected them together into a subterranean irrigation system.

    Moving on to Sugong Pagoda, you will witness this typical Islam architecture with the largest scale among all pagodas in Xinjiang. It was built by the local governor to show appreciation for Qing Government, today symbolizing national unity. The conical body of the Pagoda was engraved with beautiful paintings of strong ethnic flavor, vividly telling its old stories for the visitors. Behind the Pagoda stands the biggest Mosque in Turpan, consisting a harmonious picture in the scenic area.

    Then, you will head to Jiaohe Ruins. If you ever watched the aerial photo of Jiaohe Ruins, you will find it roves in the vast Turpan basin just like a giant aircraft carrier. Located at a ship-like loessal mesas eroded by rivers for thousands of years, the ancient city later emerged with the coming of Cheshi people whose great wisdom could be deduced easily on their masterpieces: the dwellings, streets and city layout that they built on a clever use of the local geographic conditions, thus we could have opportunity to have a look to the relics of the largest city made of natural soil in the world with long history, about 1700 years.

    Finishing the sightseeing, drive back to Urumqi.

    Accommodation: Overnight in Turpan

    Sugong Pagoda

  5. Day 5: Urumqi Departure (B)

    Free and easy on your own until the pickup time for departure. Our driver will meet you at the hotel lobby and transfer to Urumqi airport / train station to see you off.

    Accommodation: N/A

Price Includes

  • 4 nights’ accommodation in centrally located hotels with daily breakfast
  • 3 Chinese style lunches
  • Entrance tickets as listed in itinerary
  • Excellent English-speaking tour guide
  • Private transfers in air-conditioned vehicle with licensed driver
  • Travel Agency Liability Insurance during the tour
  • Government taxes

Price Excludes

  • China Visas/flights/trains
  • Any dinner
  • Any optional activity/battery car/shuttle bus/horse rides inside the attractions
  • Our package does not include travel insurance. Please purchase commercial travel insurance before your trip for any unforeseen circumstance.
  • Any item beyond "Price Includes"
  • Gratuities to guide and driver (recommended if you are satisfied with their services)

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