This 6 days China Silk Road tour links 2 pearl-like cities of ancient Silk Route: Xining and Zhangye for a deep exploration to the famous Rainbow Mountain, Matisi Grottoes, Qinghai Lake, Chaka Lake, and Ta’er Monastery. Benefitting from the only 2-hour high speed train ride between Xining and Zhangye, the tour itinerary better focuses on the travel itself and provides a life-time experience to discover the beauty of northwestern China!
Ta’er Monastery, Qinghai Lake, Chaka Lake, Giant Buddhist Temple, Matisi Grottoes, The Rainbow Mountain
Upon your arrival at Xining airport / train station, our local 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 Ta’er Monastery. As one of the “Six Great Monasteries of Tibetan Buddhism Gelug Sect”, Ta’er Monastery is another site in Xining, Qinghai Province, sharing the same popularity with Qinghai Lake. Ta’er Monastery has profound historical origin that it’s the birthplace of famous Tsongkhapa, the founder of Tibetan Buddhism Gelug Sect. Not only bearing the divine position in religious followers, the monastery is a Tibetan Buddhist institution of higher education. Beneath the glorious decorations on surface fascinating your eyes, the rich accumulations in history, culture, religion and arts of Ta’er Monastery excites your souls deeply especially when meeting those devout followers trudged for pilgrimage here.
In the morning, drive around 3 hours to Qinghai Lake.
You must have heard the fame of Qinghai Lake before you go. It is indeed hot for tour to Qinghai and the whole Silk Road. Why? The co-existence of different views collected at the meantime at Qinghai Lake push its fame higher and higher: massive sea-like lake, vast desert, lush meadow-grass and yellow sea of rape flower. A single one of the four elements would attract people as a “wonderful place”, however, the mix of the four at Qinghai Lake makes it a “must-go” place. Each summer (June and July), it ushers in the annual peak when the blossom of rape flowers and round-the-lake cycle track here.
Today, the main scenic area as you will be visiting is the Erlangjian Scenic Area where is reputed as the most beautiful place in Qinghai Lake. There is boat cruises, horse rides and bike rides available around the lake, you can optionally try it according to your interests (optional).
After the relaxing sightseeing, you will head to Chaka Salt Lake which takes around 2.5 hours driving on road. You can have some rest on the van.
Today just relax yourself in the amazing Chaka Lake!
Chaka Lake with title of “Mirror of the Sky in China” rose to fame nationwide rapidly in the recent years, attracting increasing travelers. “Chaka” means “Salt Lake” in Tibetan. As the name, Chaka Lake is a famous natural crystal salt lake in Qaidam Basin, able to meet all Chinese’s need to salt for 75 years. The pure white congealing in the water makes the lake a huge mirror to reflect the shadows of white clouds, blue sky, hovering birds and beautiful girls in bright- colored dress. Yes, a must thing to do at Chaka Lake is taking beautiful pictures for sky and people. Do remember to wear cloth with bright color.
Finishing the visit, drive around 4 hours back to Xining city.
Taking morning high-speed train from Xining to Zhangye. Upon arrival at Zhangye train station, our local English speaking tour guide and driver will be waiting for you at the exit gate by holding a welcome board with your name and your visit begins!
The first site will be Zhangye Giant Buddhist 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, it 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.
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 visitThe 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 toThe 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.
The core of our service is excellent travel guides. Over 20 years, we have built up a considerable professional guide team that is knowledgeable, attentive and flexible. The most experienced and reliable guides will be arranged for your unique China tour. Our passionate guide team is full of contagious enthusiasm and keen interest to share culture and history in a pleasant manner. We are always glad at your service to lead you to explore a real China and experience authentic local life in China.
Our Driver and Vehicle
The first mission of our service is to ensure you feel safe and comfortable during your travel. The vehicles we use are air-conditioned, clean and well-maintained. Our drivers are all licensed drivers with many years of driving experience. Moreover, we offer free baby seats for families with little kids.
Food is a very important part of Chinese culture. You won’t want to miss the opportunity to taste the real local Chinese food!
Buffet breakfast will be included in the hotel if you would like accommodation to be arranged by us. Having lunch at local restaurants close and convenient to the attractions you will visit, you would enjoy the local dishes in each city. Chinese style, Vegetarian or Muslim meals are all available. If you have any other diet requirements or allergies, please feel free to let us know, we will try our best to organize it.
For daily dinner, you are suggested to have it on your own when you are exploring each city in your own time, this way would be more flexible for you to choose food as per your interest and preference.