14 Days Silk Road Culture Exploration
Destinations:Beijing, Datong, Pingyao, Xian, Jiayuguan, Dunhuang, Turpan, Urumqi Tour
Tour Code: CITIC-SR03
International flight on your own arrangement. Once arrive in Beijing,be met and transferred to your hotel. Feel free at leisure for the rest of the day.
- Tiananmen Square
After breakfast starts with a visit to the Temple of Heaven .You will see local people practicing Tai Chi,as well as singing and calligraphy in the neighboring park,and take a leisurely walk through Tiananmen Square to the Forbidden City, enjoy the panoramic view of Forbidden City form Jing-shan Hill .Sample Peking Duck Dinner before a fantastic Kongfu Show .
The Tian'anmen Square : The largest city square in the world.
The Forbidden City : The largest imperial palace in China during the Ming and Qing dynasties with a history of around 600 years.Located in the middle of Beijing, Forbidden City was the Chinese royal palace from the Ming Dynasty to the end of the Qing Dynasty. Also called Palace Museum, the Forbidden City is recognized as the most magnificent and splendid palace complex in China and one of the five world-famous palaces with the Palace of Versailles in France, Buckingham Palace in England, the White House in United States and the Kremlin in Russia.
The Temple of Heaven : Temple of Heaven ( Tiantan ) is located in the southern part of Beijing, and has been one of the most holy places for the whole country for more than five centuries. It used as a complex of sacrificial buildings for the Ming and Qing emperors, and is the largest one in Beijing among several royal altars to Heaven, Earth, the Sun, the Moon and other deities or symbolic forces of Nature.
- The Great Wall
Morning head to visit the Great Wall, Ming Tomb .Then explore the alleyway -"Hutong" by riding on a traditional rickshaw to catch close-up glimpses of local life.
The Great Wall : One of the seven wonders in the world and the symbol of China.Badaling Great Wall is the most impressive and the most visited section of the Great Wall of China. Constructed in 1502 during the Ming Dynasty, the Badaling Great Wall once served as an important military fortification. Many leaders from China and around the world, like Richard Nixon, Margaret Thatcher…all visited this section of the wall.
The Ming Tomb : The only underground tomb of the thirteen tombs of the emperors in the Ming Dynasty.Some 50 kilometers northwest of the downtown Beijing, the Ming Tombs are generally combined with a visit to the Great Wall. Otherwise known as the “13 Tombs”, this is the burial site of 13 out of 17 emperors of the Ming Dynasty. However, the only one you can get a good look at is the tomb of Emperor Wanli, who reigned from 1537 to 1620. This tomb was unearthed in 1956. There are two others that have been uncovered, but the rest remain illusive.
- Bird's Nest National Stadium
Take a photo stop at the 200 Olympic Site to see the Bird's Nest National Stadium and Water Cube Aquatic Centre .Then explore the Summer Place-a former imperial summer resort.
Bird's Nest National Stadium:The National Stadium, affectionately known as Bird's Nest, is situated in Olympic Green Village, Chaoyang District, Beijing. It was designed as the main stadium of 2008 Beijing Olympic Games. The Olympic events of track and field, football, gavelock, weight throw and discus were held there.
Water Cube Aquatic Centre:Located on the west side of Landscape Avenue in the Olympic Green and to the west of Beijing National Stadium(Bird's Nest), the National Aquatics Center contains the official 2008 Olympics swimming facility. It measures 177 meters (194 yards) long, 177meters wide, and 30 meters (98 feet) high and covers an area of 62,950 sq meters (75,287 sq yard). It has four floors: one at street level, two above, and one below. Its floor space reaches 79,532 sq meters (95,119 sq yard), while the below street level area is no less than 15,000 sq meters (17,939 sq yard).
Summer Place:Situated in the Haidian District northwest of Beijing City, the Summer Palace is 15 kilometers (9.3 miles) from central Beijing. Being the largest and most well-preserved royal park in China, it greatly influences Chinese horticulture and landscape with its famous natural views and cultural interests, which also has long since been recognized as 'The Museum of Royal Gardens' .
Day 5Beijing Datong
- Yungang Caves
Take the morning train ride to the ancient city of Datong.Visit Yungang Caves,where to see amazing Buddhist carving craftsmanship from thumb-sized figurines to a 12m Buddhist statues,and then visit the 1500 year old Hanging Monastery with its halls and pavilions built along the natural contours of the cliff.
Yungang Caves:one of the three major cave clusters in China, punctuate the north cliff of Wuzhou Mountain, Datong. The area was excavated along the mountain, extending 1 km (0.62 miles) from east to west, revealing 53 caves and over 51,000 stone statues.The Caves are divided into east, middle, and west parts. Pagodas dominate the eastern parts; west caves are small and mid-sized with niches.
Hanging Monastery :Hanging Monastery stands at the foot of Mt. Hengshan, 5 kilometers (3 miles) south of Hunyuan County, and 65 kilometers (40 miles) from downtown Datong City. Since it hangs on the west cliff of Jinxia Gorge more than 50 meters above the ground, it is called Hanging Monastery.Hanging Monastery, built in 491, has survived more than 1400 years.
Day 6Datong Pingyao Xi'an
- Qiao Family Courtyard House
After breakfast head to the World Heritage listed ancient town of Pingyao-where to see the city surrounded by Ming City Walls .Pingyao was China's banking centra and has many mansions,courtyard house,temples,museums and historic shops.Stroll from Ming Qing street to Town Tower,Armed Escort Company Museum and the Temple of the City God.Visit Qiao Family Courtyard House,where the movies "Raise the Red Lantern" was filmed.Take an overnight soft sleeper train to Xi'an.
City Wall:Being one of the four wholly-protected ancient cities in China, Pingyao Ancient City is thought of as the 'treasure house' of ancient Chinese architectures. (The other three are Langzhong Ancient City, Shexian County and the Old Town of Lijiang .
Temple of the City God:As one of the best preserved temples in China, the Temple of the City God is located in the southeast of Pingyao City. The whole construction is of a grand scale, and covers an area of 7,302 square meters (approx. 8,733 square yards). The temple has a long history and has been renovated several times.Built facing the south, the temple looks very magnificent.
Qiao Family Courtyard House:The prosperity of the Qiao Family originated with Qiao Guifa who was an orphan and made a living as a servant during the reign of Emperor Qianlong (1711 - 1799) in the Qing Dynasty (1644 - 1911). He first started a business when he met his business partner, Qin. Initially, they sold fodder, bean sprout and bean curd. Several years later, they had become very wealthy.
- Xi'an Old Mosque-Prayer
Morning arrive Xi'an,you will be met and transferred to your hotel.This afternoon stroll on the original City Wall,Which you have opportunity to cycle on this ancient wall,and then explore the Old Muslim Quarter and Old Mosque.
The Ancient City Wall : An extension of the old Tang Dynasty structure boasting the most complete city wall that survives through Chinese long history.The City Wall has corner towers, ramparts, sentry towers, gate towers, battlements and a a number of city defensive fortifications with very strong defense capability.
Old Muslim Quarter and Old Mosque:The Great Mosque is a Chinese traditional Alhambresque architecture with a long history and grant scale, which is the great combination of Islamic and Chinese culture. It was recorded that it was established in the first year of the Tian Bao reign by Li Lung Ji, after renovations and expansions on several occasions in the Song, Yuan and especially the Ming and Qing Dynasties, it gradually takes on the current performance. The Great Mosque and the Muslim Quarter now is the important relic preservation of Shanxi Province and the national important relic preservation of third period.
- The Terracotta Warriors
After breakfast visit the Terra-cotta Warriors and Horses -where7000 individually crafted clay soldiers stand on guard.Then continue to the Bid Wild Goose Pagoda built to house Buddhist scriptures collected by a Chinese Monk,where you can see variety of buddha statues .
The Terra-cotta Warriors and Horses : The greatest archaeological findings of the century: the army of terra-cotta warriors and the bronze chariots entombed in vast underground vaults at emperor Qin's tomb.
The Wild Goose Pagoda: The pagoda where widely renowned Master Xuanzang (Monk Tripitaka) stored his classics brought from India. Big Goose Pagoda is one of the oldest structures in China. Originally Big Goose Pagoda consisted of a brick structure of five storeys and was about 60 meters high. First built in 589A.D.in the Sui Dynasty. Between AD 701 and AD 704 during the reign of the Empress Wu Zetian five more storeys were added to the pagoda making ten in all.
Day 9Xi'an Jiayuguan
- The Jiayuguan Pass
After breakfast take the flight to Jiayuguan,visit The Jiayuguan Pass, The Great Wall on the Cliff, Great Walls Museum upon arrival.
The Jiayuguan Pass : Jiayuguan Pass stands in the southwest part of Jiayuguan City, about 6 km away from downtown. The castle was begun in 1372 in the Ming Dynasty and located in the Jiayu Highland, hence its name Jiayuguan Pass. It is situated between the Wenshu and Heishan Mountains at the foot of Jiayuguan Hill of Qilian Mountain.
The Great Wall on the Cliff : The Suspended Wall is a part of the Great Wall. The wall here was built on the ridge with the gradient of 45 degrees. It is high in the air and it looks as if it fell down from the top of the hill.
Great Walls Museum:The Great Wall museum opened to visitor in October 1989 and it is the first one to exhibit the Great Wall culture in a comprehensive and systematic way.The Museum covers an area of 12,312 square meters with an exhibition area of about 1,766 square meters. Its main building takes a shape of a typical signal fire tower on the Great Wall.
Day 10Jiayuguan Dunhuang
- Yulin Grottoes
After breakfast head to Dunhuang,visit the Yulin Grottoes en route.
Yulin Grottoes :lie 70 kilometers to the south of Anxi County, Gansu Province.Yunlin Grottoes are chiseled in the cliffs on both the east and west sides of the Yulin River. The east cliff has 30 grottoes and the west has 11, with a distance of more than 100 meters between them. It used to be called Ten-Thousand Buddha Gorge. The grottoes began to be chiseled and sculpted during the Northern Wei Dynasty (386-534), and was enlarged in the later dynasties such as the Tang (618-907), Five Dynasties (907-960), Song (960-1279), the Western Xia (1038-1227), Yuan (1271-1368) and so on. There are more than 1,000 square meters of frescoes, and more than 100 colored sculptures extant there
Day 11Dunhuang Turpan
- Echoing-Sand Mountain and Crescent Lake
After breakfast visit the Mogao Grottoes , Echoing-Sand Mountain and Crescent Lake.then be transferred to the railway station to catch the train to Turpan.
Mogao Grottoes:The traveler finds the Mogao Caves, a shrine of Buddhist art treasures, 25 km (15.5miles) from downtown Dunhuang on the eastern slope of Mingsha Shan (Mount Echoing Sand). A network of plank reinforced roads plying north to south 1600 meters (5, 249 feet) long lead to the cave openings, which are stacked five stories high some reaching up to 50 meters (164 feet). By the way, Mogao means high up in the desert.According to Tang Dynasty records, a monk had witnessed onside a vision of thousand Buddhas under showers of golden rays. Thus inspired, he started the caves construction work that spanned ten dynasties.
Echoing-Sand Mountain and Crescent Lake:Located 5 km (about three miles) south of Dunhuang City, the Echoing-Sand Mountain, for many Chinese well known as Mingsha Mountain, is celebrated for the sound of the moving sand. In 1994 it was acclaimed as the national key scenic spot. Together with the Crescent Springand the Mogao Caves, the Echoing-Sand Mountain is most popular sitein Dunhuang travel.You may wonder why the sand makes these different sounds. There is a legend that says how, in ancient times, a general with many soldiers came here to fight in a war with their enemies.
- Jiaohe Ruins
After check in hotel Visit Jiaohe Ancient City, Bezklik Grottoes, Tuyoq Village and The Flaming Mountain.
Jiaohe Ruins is located on a mesa in willow leaf shape between the Yarnaz River valleys 10 kilometers to the west of Turpan City. running from northwest to southeast, 1760 meters long and 300 meters across at the widest part.
Bezklik Grottoes:“Bezklik”means “a place with beautiful decoration”. These caves are first excavated in Qu`s Gaochang period. The excising caves were reconstructed by Uighur people.
Tuyoq Valley,constructed in eastern and western cliffs in Tuyoq valley . more than 40 caves, there are 10 preserving murals. They are considered to be the earliest caves in Turpan, Murals are mostly damaged, but unique in style.
The Flaming Mountain:The Flaming Mountain is a legendary mountain, running from Shanshan County on west, 98 kilometers in length and 9 kilometers across, with a relative height of 500 meters and the highest peak 831.7 meters. The mountain is a branch range of the Bogda Mountain , formed in the orogenic movements of the Himalayas .
Day 13Turpan Urumqi
- Karez Irrigation System,
After breakfast visit Karez Well, Astana Tombs,Sugong Minaret,then back to Urumqi .visit the Xinjiang international Bazaar.
Karez Irrigation System,The Karez System is a unique irrigation system in Turpan, which, taking advantage of the slopes, draws the underground water to flow by itself to irrigate farmland. It consists of four parts: vertical wells, underground channels, ground canals and small reservoirs
Astana Tombs are the graveyard of the residents lived in the Gaochang City in the Jin-Tang times.. Between 1959 and 1975, a great number of cultural relics have been unearthed, including Chinese documents, textiles, epitaphs, coins, clay sculptures, pottery, wooden wares,etc Known as “the Underground Museum.
Sugong Minaret was built in the 41st year of the Qianlong period of the Qing Dynasty,It is an embodiment of the ancient architectural arts of the Uygur nationality. The tower is 37 meters high and 10 meters in diameter at the base. The body of the tower is cylindroid in shape, built with bricks arranged in various symmetrical patterns.
Day 14Urumqi Your destination
- Xinjiang Museum
After breakfast visit Xinjiang Museum,and then transfer to the airport and take the flight to your destination.
Xinjiang Museum,the museum is the main institution to collect and investigate the unearthed cultural relics and specimens in Xinjiang. There are more than 50 thousand pieces of various kinds of cultural relics stored in the museum, among them, the ancient mummies represented by ‘the Loulan Beauty', manuscripts in Chinese, Kharosthi, Qiuci, Yanji, Tibetan, Uigurian and other characters prevailed in ancient Western Regions, etc., are unusual tidbits in the world.
|Travel in party of||
|2-5 persons||$ 2816||$ 2541||$ 2266|
|6-9 persons||$ 2376||$ 2101||$ 1826|
|10 persons & above||$ 2190||$ 1906||$ 1690|
|Single room Supplement||$ 833||$ 640||$ 366|
2 Breakfast in the hotel
3 Personal Guide & Driver + Private car / van for Private Transfers & sightseeing
4 Hotels (twin share bases) as listed in the itinerary .
5 Domestic flights or trains as listed in the itinerary
Train (soft sleeper): Beijing to Datong. Pingyao to Xi'an, Dunhuang to Turpan
Flights with tax:: Xi'an to Jianyuguan
6 Service Charge & Government Taxes .
7 Luggage Transfers between airports and hotels
8 Government letter for visa support
2 Personal expenses. such as laudentry and tips to the guide and driver
3 other activities such as boating, camel riding ect
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