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16 Days Southern Xinjiang Exploration

16 Days Southern Xinjiang Exploration

Urumqi - Turpan - Korla - Kuqa - Alar - Hotan - Kashgar- Urumqi
Duration: 16 Days Departure: All year around
Highlights:
Jiaohe Ruins, Karez, Sugong Tower, Ancient City of Gaochang, Bezeklik Thousand Buddha Cave, Tuyugou, Tiemen Pass, Subashi Ancient City, Kuqa Mosque, Kizil Thousand Buddha Caves, Kizil Grand Canyon, The Royal Palace of Kuqa, Visit Hetian, enjoying the Taklimakan Desert en route, The tomb of the Kings of Shache, Id Kah Mosque, Abakh Hoja Tomb, Bazaar, Karakul Lake, Alar Golden Grassland, Stone Castle, Xinjiang Museum, International Bazaar, the Heaven Lake
This 16 days tour is absolutely for the Silk Road culture enthusiast or those who born with an adventure mind. The cool sites and places in the middle of nowhere defines what kind of person you are!
DAY BY DAY
D1: Urumqi Arrival
D2-4: Urumqi - Turpan
D5-7: Turpan - Korla - Kuqa
D7-8: Kuqa - Alar - Hotan
D9-10: Hotan - Kashgar
D11-14: Kashgar - Urumqi
D15-16: Urumqi
$ per person

Day 1 Urumqi Arrival

Schedule Today: Your guide and driver will pick you up at airport, and drop you at your hotel. Check in at hotel and feel free to explore the city on your own.

Day 2 Urumqi - Turpan

Highlights: Jiaohe Ruins, Karez, Sugong Tower

Schedule Today:  Transfer to Turpan in the morning, visiting Jiaohe Ruins. With the history of 2500 years, Jiaohe Ruins is one of the world' s architectural wonders. Then go to visit Karez. It is a unique irrigation system of wells connected by underground channel used in Xinjiang. At last, you will visit Sugong Tower (Emin Minaret), the largest extant ancient Islamic tower in Xinjiang.

Jiaohe Ruins Sugong Tower
Jiaohe Ruins Sugong Tower

Day 3 Turpan

Highlights: Ancient City of Gaochang, Bezeklik Thousand Buddha Cave, Tuyugou

Schedule Today: After breakfast, your guide and driver will Ancient City of Gaochang (Iduqut Shahri). It is an important trading post on the Silk Road. You can choose to take a donkey cart to visit. Then go to visit Bezeklik Thousand Buddha Cave, the most representative Buddhism Relic in Xinjiang. Visit Tuyugou(Toyukmazar) in the end. As the holy place for Buddhism and Islam, it attract plenty of people come here to visit.

Ancient City of Gaochang Bezeklik Thousand Buddha Cave
Ancient City of Gaochang Bezeklik Thousand Buddha Cave

Day 4 Turpan - Korla

Highlights: Tiemen Pass

Schedule Today: Today, you will be transferred to Korla after breakfast. It may take about 5.5 hrs en route. Enjoy the beautiful sceneries along the way. When you arrive, visit Tiemen Pass (Iron Gate Pass). It was the traffic hub of Southern and Northern Xinjiang, the throat of ancient "Silk Road".

Tiemen Pass Timen Pass
Tiemen Pass Timen Pass

Day 5 Korla - Kuqa

Highlights: Subashi Ancient City, Kuqa Mosque

Schedule Today: Visit Subashi Ancient City.  With the name of "Zhaolinli Temple", the temple was built in Wei - Jin Period. And the famous Monk Xuanzang in Tang Dynasty has been here for two months on his way to acquire scriptures. Then go to visit Kuqa Mosque. Kuqa Mosque is the second largest mosque in Xinjiang, right after Id Kah Mosque in Kashgar. It is the only mosque that preserves the Shariya System in China.

Subashi Ancient City Kuqa Mosque
Subashi Ancient City Kuqa Mosque

Day 6 Kuqa

Highlights: Kizil Thousand Buddha Caves, Kizil Grand Canyon

Schedule Today: After breakfast, your guide and driver will transfer you to Kuqa. You will visit Kizil Thousand Buddha Caves. It located on the commercial hub of the Silk Road. It is the earliest Buddhist cave complex in China. And it is also the largest of the ancient Buddhist cave sites in Xinjiang. Then go to visit Kizil Grand Canyon. Its name means red canyon. And it is also known as Tianshan Great Canyon.

Kizil Thousand Buddha Caves Kizil Grand Canyon
Kizil Thousand Buddha Caves Kizil Grand Canyon

Day 7 Kuqa - Alar

Highlights: The Royal Palace of Kuqa

Schedule Today: In the morning, go to visit The Royal Palace of Kuqa. In order to appreciate the owner of the palace who have contribute greatly to protect the unity of the state. Emperor Qianlong of the Qing Dynasty send labours to build this Palace. Then transfer to Alar, enjoying the Taklimakan Desert en route.

The Royal Palace of Kuqa Taklimakan Desert
The Royal Palace of Kuqa Taklimakan Desert

Day 8 Alar - Hetian

Schedule Today: Visit Hetian on you own in the morning. Then transfer to Hetian, enjoying the Taklimakan Desert en route.

Day 9 Hotan

Highlights: Ruins of Rewake Buddhist Temple, Silk Market, Jade Bazaar in Hotan

Schedule Today: In the morning, visit Ruins of Rewake Buddhist Temple. It is the Buddha Temple complex with a tower as the center. Then go to visit Silk Market in Hotan to see beautiful silk on the market. Then go to visit Jade Bazaar in Hotan. The Jade in Hotan is very famous since ancient time. Plenty of merchant came to Hotan to trade, that make Hotan became a prosperous town.

Ruins of Rewake Buddhist Temple Jade Bazaar
Ruins of Rewake Buddhist Temple Jade Bazaar

Day 10 Hotan - Kashgar

Highlights: The tomb of the Kings of Shache

Schedule Today: Drive to Kashgar in the morning. We will pass Shache County, and stop to visit The tomb of the Kings of Shache. It was first built in Qing Dynasty. And the lots of royal members in Shache were buried here. It was decorated delicately, and most parts of the building were well - preserved. When you arrived at Kashgar, take a rest.

The Tonb of the Kings of Shache The Tonb of the Kings of Shache
The Tonb of the Kings of Shache The Tonb of the Kings of Shache

Day 11 Kashgar

Highlights: Id Kah Mosque, Abakh Hoja Tomb, Bazaar

Schedule Today: In the morning, go to visit Id Kah Mosque in the morning. Id Kah Mosque is the largest mosque in China, and it has great influence on the world. Then go to visit Abakh Hoja Tomb. This is a typical ancient Islam style building group. It' s also the mausoleum of saints of Islam. After that, we will go to visit Bazaar to experience local life. If today is Sunday, we will go to alert to see the most representative and unique bazaar here - the animal bazaar. If time allows, we will go to visit Kashgar ancient town, appreciating the most traditional local house.

Id Kah Mosque Bazaar
Id Kah Mosque Bazaar

Day 12 Kashgar - Taxkorgan

Highlights: Karakul Lake

Schedule Today: In the morning, transfer to Toxkorgan. You will pass a large area of Gobi Desert. Just enjoy the special scenery en route. After driving about 4 hours, you will reach Karakul Lake. Its name means "Black sea". Actually, the water is dark blue. And it was surrounded by the mountains. And the sand on the beach is white, which fit the lake fine and makes this lake looks holy. After visit, transfer to Taxkorgan.

Karakul Lake The Tajik Couple
Karakul Lake The Tajik Couple

Day 13 Taxkorgan - Kashgar

Highlights: Alar Golden Grassland, Stone Castle

Schedule Today: In the morning, go to visit Alar Golden Grassland. It is located on the west end of the small border town. The vast expanse of grassland at waterside looks golden under sunshine. Then go to visit Stone Castle besides the grassland. After visit, go back to Kashgar.

Alar Golden Grassland Stone Castle
Alar Golden Grassland Stone Castle

Day 14 Kashgar - Urumqi

Highlights: Xinjiang Museum, International Bazaar

Schedule Today: In the morning, you guide and driver will send you at airport, and you will fly to Urumqi. When you arrived, your guide and driver will pick you up and send you to visit Xinjiang Museum. Here you can have a better understanding about this place. Then go to visit the International Bazaar in Urumqi, which is the largest bazaar in the world.

Xinjiang Museum International Bazaar
Xinjiang Museum International Bazaar

Day 15 the Heaven Lake

Highlights: the Heaven Lake

Schedule Today: Today you will spend whole day to visit the Heaven Lake. Surrounded by Snow Mountains and coniferous forest, the Heaven Lake has crystal water. On the mountains beside the lake are habitat lots of precious flower and animal. Stunning scenic spot attract tourists all over the world.

The Heaven Lake The Heaven Lake
The Heaven Lake The Heaven Lake

Day 16 Urumqi Departure

Schedule Today: Today your guide and driver will transfer to airport, and you trip will end up with sweet memories.

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