11 Days Tour of Desert Highway in Xinjiang

Urumqi, Turpan, Korla, Minfeng, Hotan, Kashgar

Traveler Reviews


Tour Code: TCT-Xinjiang-03

Tour Type: Private Tour

Tour Highlights:

A great tour to visit Xinjiang Province, the biggest province in the Northwest of China.

Explore the mysterious and fantastic landscapes in Xinjiang.

Be stunned by the unique folk customs and inspiring sightseeing.
 

Best Travel Time: Suitable for the whole year, best from May to October.

Price from $ 1747

Free Inquiry

Day 1Arrival Urumqi

Meals: No meal
Accommodation: In Urumqi

Arrival at Urumqi in Xinjiang, an area of the unparalleled scenery and cultural diversity, you will be greeted by your tour guide and transferred to hotel. Free at leisure for the rest of the day.

Urumqi City View
Urumqi City View

Day 2Urumqi
Heavenly Lake, Erdaoqiao Grand Bazaar


Meals: Breakfast, Lunch
Accommodation:In Urumqi

Take a driving for 120km northeast to visit the holy Heavenly Lake (Tianchi). The beautiful lake is flanked by rugged pines and cypresses, with clear melting waters reflecting the surrounding of snow capped mount Bogeda. After the tour, be transferred back to downtown, you can then take a short visit to Erdaoqiao Grand Bazaar, which is believed to be the largest outdoor market in town.

Heavenly Lake
Heavenly Lake (Tianchi)

Day 3Urumqi - Turpan
Drive to Turpan(200km, 3 hours), Jiaohe Ancient City, Emin Minaret, Karez Well

Meals: Breakfast, Lunch
Accommodation:In Turpan

Today, you will take about 3hours driving to Turpan, on the way, you will pass Urumqi Wind Power Mill, which was built for producing electrical power in the area. After cross the valley of Tianshan we will arrive in the lowest depression of China-Turpan City. Upon arrival, visit the mysterious death city, the Ruins of Jiaohe Ancient City, which reveals traces of a prosperous ancient trading center and military stronghold 1,600 years ago. And then visit Emin Minaret (Sugong Pagoda) - the biggest ancient pagoda existing in Xinjiang and the only Islamic ancient pagoda in the country and ancient Karez Well, the underground water supply and irrigation system.

Jiaohe Ancient City
Jiaohe Ancient City

Day 4Turpan
Gaohang Ancient City, Grape Valley, Flaming Mountain, Bezeklik Caves

Meals: Breakfast, Lunch
Accommodation:In Turpan

Have another day excursion in Turpan that including the visit to Gaochang Ancient City, which was an important garrison town on the Silk Road, Grape Valley - famous for the cultivation of the sweetest, tastiest grapes in China, Flaming Mountain - so named because in the evenings the red clay mountains reflect the heat and glow of the desert and seem to burn and Bezeklik Caves, where more than 100 caves were hewn out of this cliff face between the 6th and 9th centuries by Buddhist monks who farmed the valley below.

Grape Valley
Grape Valley

Day 5Turpan - Korla
Drive to Korla (400km, 6 hours), Iron Gate Pass, Bosten Lake

Meals: Breakfast, Lunch
Accommodation:In Korla

In the morning, take a long drive (8hours) to Korla, an oasis town on Peacock River, at the northern edge on the Taklamakan Desert. During the way, you will have chance to visit the Iron Gate Pass which is of strategically historical significance because it formed a vulnerable bottle-neck on the Silk Road. Upon arrival take a boat trip on Bosten Lake which is the largest fresh water lake in China (CNY600 per boat per time on your own expense).

Taklamakan Desert Highway
Taklamakan Desert Highway

Day 6Korla - Minfeng
Drive to Minfeng(780km, 7 hours)

Meals: Breakfast
Accommodation: In Minfeng

Today, get up early and continue your long driving journey to Minfeng (780km, about 7hours). On the way, you will cross the 2nd largest shifting desert in the world - Taklamakan Desert, which means "once inside never out". Enjoy the magnificent vista of countless sand dunes at the height of mountains on the way.
Bayibuluke Grassland
Bayibuluke Grassland

Day 7Minfeng - Hotan
Drive to Hotan (320km, 6 hours)

Meals: Breakfast, Lunch
Accommodation: In Hotan

Take another driving to Hotan (320km), home to some very well known archaeological sites in China. In the late 18th century many explorers from England, Germany, France, Russia, Japan, came to Hotan where some of them almost lost their lives in the desert. On the way we will pass Keriya, an oasis town on the old Southern Silk Road.

Taklamakan Desert
Taklamakan Desert

Day 8Hotan
Ruins of Mallikurwatur, family workshop of paper making in Hotan

Meals: Breakfast, Lunch
Accommodation: In Hotan

In the morning, you will take a visit to the Ruins of Mallikurwatur which is believed to be the ancient city of Yutian Kingdom. After the tour, be transferred back to the city and visit local family workshop of paper making.

Day 9Hotan - Kashgar
Drive to Kashgar (520km, 9 hours)

Meals: Breakfast, Lunch
Accommodation:In Kashgar

In the moring take a driving to Kashgar (520km), you will pass some oasis towns like Yarkent, which was the capital of the ancient Uyghur Karahanid Kingdom of 15 th century. Visit a notable knife factory in Yengisar which is famous for knives making. Late in afternoon we will arrive at Kashgar, a main hub of the ancient Silk Road of China.

Kashgar
Kashgar

Day 10Kashgar
Zhiren Street, Id Kah Mosque, Apak Hoja Tomb, Local Bazaar

Meals: Breakfast, Lunch
Accommodation:In Kashgar

Today, take a visit to Zhiren Street, an old street with an amazing hand-made stuff from strictly utilitarian cookware to exotic musical instruments. Then continue your trip to Id Kah Mosque, which is one of the largest and busiest in China. Then, you can take a short visit to Apak Hoja Tomb. If it is Sunday, the local Bazaar will be a good place for you to have a visit. This ancient market attracts locals and merchants from all over Xinjiang and nearby countries such as Pakistan and Kirghizstan.

Apak Hoja Tomb
Apak Hoja Tomb

Day 11Kashgar - Urumqi, Departure
Fly to Urumqi for departure

Meals: Breakfast

Free at leisure then you will be transferred to the airport for your flight back to Urumqi. Then help yourselves change the connecting flight to next destination.

Service Ends

Tour Price (US$ per person)

Hotel Class Group Size Dec. ~ Feb. Mar. ~ Nov.
Economy Hotel
★★★
2 ~ 5 pax $2635 $2743
6 ~ 9 pax $1747 $1855
Comfortable Hotel
★★★★
2 ~ 5 pax $2875 $3013
6 ~ 9 pax $1916 $2054
Deluxe Hotel
★★★★★
2 ~ 5 pax $2979 $3156
6 ~ 9 pax $1992 $2169
Price includes:

♦ Domestic flight or high-speed train as specified
♦ Private transfer between the airport or railway station, attractions, and hotels
♦ Private licensed English-speaking guide and driver service
♦ Hotel accommodation with daily breakfast on sharing basis
♦ All attraction entrance fees as specified
♦ Meals mentioned in the itinerary, Chinese local food
China Life Tourist Accident/Casualty Insurance

Price excludes:

* International Air tickets or Train Tickets to enter or leave China
* Tips to your tour guide and driver on your own discretion
* China Entry Visa Fees
* Personal expenses
* Optional tours, meals, activities and services


Remarks:

※ Prices are valid from Mar 1, 2020 to Feb 28, 2021, except Chinese public holidays, local fairs or events.
※ TCT reserves the right to adjust the price caused by exchange rate
※ No guide on the flight and Yangtze River cruise. 
※ Recommended hotels are subject to change in actual booking
※ Special requirements should be advised to TCT in advance.
※ TCT reserves the right of final explanation for any change due to the reasons beyond our control.

Traveler Reviews Feedbacks & Photos >>

5.0

Piotr F

5.0

I have co-operated with Mrs Janet Chan several times during my visits to China. Need to be said that all of the services are at the very high standard. High level of dedication cannot be forgotten. All to all I find TCT and personally Mrs Janet Chan as a extremely competent and trustable business partner.
glennkim11

5.0

we looked around and could not find anyone else that would tailor a trip how we wanted it But Janet from Top China Travel was so helpful we emailed at first then talked on skype Janet Chan of the Guilin office went that extra mile Janet helped us plan our 4 week tour of China starting in Shanghi then to Yellow Mountain were Misha met us took us to some old villages then spent 3 days in the mountains with Misha showing us her wonderful part of the world (a Must do) then took the Public Bus to Hangzhou this was a great choice then onto Beijing, Xian by High Speed train (spoil your self go 1st class was great) we did the Great wall at Mutianyu we had 4 hr wish we had more time there Herbet our guid took us to The Sacred road & the Chang Tomb in the afternoon well worth the very long day Xian Terracotta Warriors Met the guy that found them and a great day Guili,Yangshou & Longsheng Annie or guid was great took us to some real out of the way places we met up with Janet in Guilin and she gave us a very personalised gift something very special to my wife & I Janet made sure we did not miss a thing. All of our tour guides and drivers were waiting for us at the train stations/airports as pre-arranged which took a lot of stress away. Everything ran so smoothly. A big Thank You to TCT Janet and the team for making our experience so enjoyable. WE will be Back The Food was Great go to the little cafes in the back streets well worth it and cheap
Geonannie

5.0

Top China Travel is the the tops! I booked an 21 day tour of China for my husband and I and from the very first contact with Lily Lui I was totally impressed. We communicated via e-mail and Lily was very quick and helpful with her responses. Because this was not our first trip to China, I wanted an itinerary that was different from the norm. Lily's recommendations were top notch. The hotels she used were top shelf as we requested. Our guides and drivers were fantastic. What impressed me the most was that when we were in China, Lily called to speak to me and make sure everything was going well. When I ran into some issues due to altitude sickness, I contacted her and she had the itinerary changes done and finalized within an hour. This was a private tour with guide and driver and I honestly can say there was not one thing I wished we had done differently. Thanks to Top China Travel and Lily our trip to China was perfect. I will definitely be contacting Lily when we return to China for yet another visit.
Greg M

5.0

My father & I chose Top China Tours for our 8 day trip which we enjoyed thoroughly. Janet was our vacation planner. She was very professional and helped us through each step of the process. Not only did we see the usual tourist locations (Great Wall, Terra Cotta Soldiers, etc.), she was very flexible to our other visit desires. The tour guides in each city were personable, knowledgeable and spoke very good English. Rather than visit the tourist location of the Great Wall, we drove to a very rural location. The wall was in it's original state. I suggest this location only for those able to hike rugged terrain. The scenery was breathtaking. Xi'an while being the oldest city was bubbling with university students. This was our favorite stop. Our hotels were excellent. Make sure you stay in the downtown areas to explore after your tours. Air quality is bad in the cities so asthma suffers beware. If you plan to use ATMs make sure you have your card PIN. Starbucks, McDonalds & KFC are located everywhere should you need some variety.
Miriam F

5.0

Arrived in Beijing, took high speed train to Xian and then plane to Shanghai. Beautiful weather, good food and great sites. Would have liked an extra day in Beijing and Shanghai.

Hotels and local tour guides were fantastic. Bus drivers got us around each city with amazing skill and precision.
brenda1lee2000

5.0

I found Top China Travel in the internet, and started a conversation via email with one of the travel agents, her name is Joyce Tang, needless to say, she was excellent and understood exactly what we wanted to do and visit as a family. Joyce created a semi-private itinerary for my family. Everything went perfectly as planned and as described in the itinerary that I received from Joyce. We visited Shanghai, Xian, and Beijing, a 6 Day itinerary. We are extremely happy with the service we received!
bennystein

5.0

We finished our trip to China (2.5 weeks) before one week, and from then we have not stopped thinking and talking about it. Undoubtly was one of the best trips we have ever had. The trip was organized for 2 couples by TCT's agent Janet Chan who did a PERFECT planning and organization. Everything worked so well, starting with the scheduled plan, the outstanding guides, the proffesional drivers, the vans we had, the excellent hotels we stayed on. Everything was well planned and perfect delivered. We will not forget our guides, Alice in Shanghai, Linda in Beijing, Sue in Xian and Juli in Guilin and Yangshou, everything supervised and controled by Janet Chan. Thanks to all the team for enabling us to know China and its great People. Benny Stein.
doronbron

5.0

We just came back from an eight days trip with Janet at TCT during March 2017. The trip was tailored to our needs as we were in Shanghai for 5 days before starting our trip. We visited Shanghai Xian and Beijing. The help and service received from Janet and TCT were outstanding. Our guides in Shanghai (Sarah) Xian (Cherry) and Beijing (Cathy) were excellent, they all knew the history and were very flexible. The guides were always on time and we had excellent drivers. We would highly recommend TCT and Janet on your next trip to China.
bp1234_12

5.0

Very satisfied with my recent Beijing>XIAN> Shanghai tour with Top China Travel. I wanted to have the services of a tour to navigate China given the language and short visit. From the inception Joyce my tour coordinator was very helpful and responded promptly to my many questions and clarifications. All aspects of the tour and options were very well explained and communicated. Guides were very knowledgeable and communicated with no issues in English. They were prompt, informative, helpful and Jolly which made the experience more pleasant. All aspects of the trips including internal train and flights were well planned and orchestrated so there was never any concerns and confusion at the sites and going on to the next destination. Guides were also helpful in suggesting venues for Dinner and currency exchanges, souvenir shops etc. Special call out to Ocean in Beijing who really goes all out to ensure you have an enjoyable and positive experience. Being an avid traveller, I can certainly recommend Top China Travel.
andyanne2017

5.0

We recently returned from a 16 day tour of China. Our holiday was organised by Rebecca Wei who was a pleasure to deal with. We arrived in Beijing and departed from Shanghai. There was lots to organise as we had two internal flights and three train journeys as well as three nights on a boat cruising the Yangtze river. All the arrangments fell into place like clockwork, our guides were excellent, spoke very good english and had a good knowledge of the places we visited. We saw some fantastic sights but some of the highlights for us were The Great Wall, The Yungang Grottoes, The Hanging Temple Datong, The terrracotta warriors and the muslim quarter in Xiang and the cruise on the Yangtze. We travelled in September so the temperatures were around 28C [ fine for us as we live in Durban] it is also a good time as the lines to get enterance to some places were very short. There was a lot of walking involved so comfortable walking shoes are a must as well as a sun hat. We stayed in a couple of "traditional" hotels which we loved and then some very upmarket hotels. The exception was the hotel in Xiang which scored 100% on location but had some very unfriendly staff a poor restaurant as well as putting us in an unrenovated room for the first night. We moved to the renovated floors for the other night which was much better. I should add here that this was a mistake by the hotel not TCT] My one regret is that we should have stayed a night in Wuzhen Water Town but that really was not practical as we had to leave our hotel in Shanghai at 4 in the morning to catch the flight home. We have some wondefull memories so thank you Rebecca and TCT for organizing a really interesting holiday Andrew and Anne B, DurbanSouth Africa
Kevsrevs

5.0

In April and May, 2017, my wife and I went to China. We booked our trip online from Australia. The girl we dealt with was called Rebecca. She was absolutely fantastic. We changed our minds, about our destinations, many times, in the planning process but Rebecca was always there to give us advice and make suggestions. At one stage, we hadn't heard from her, for about two days. She apologised for the delay because she got married!
We went to Shanghai, Guilin,Kunming, Dali, Lijiang, Chengdu, Lhasa, Xian and Wuhan. We had the good fortune to meet Rebecca when we were in Guilin. It was great to meet the person, who had made our trip so absolutely successful.
We found out about Top China Travel, via Trip Adviser. We can only say, from our experience, if you are going to China, book through them and ask for Rebecca. Rebecca was a pleasure to deal with and she is an absolute asset to this company.
Marfutta

5.0

We took the private 21 day Panorama tour for two, and it was above an beyond any expectations. We've got absolutely impeccable service - the guides / drivers were never late, even for a second - they were expecting us at the airports, train stations, hotel lobbies, always ready to take care of us. All the hotels were great, with very ample buffet breakfast included. Cars were nice and comfortable, equipped with A/C, and bottled water was always there for us. Great itineraries too, with Tibet included - a lot of incredible sightseeing - never were disappointed. Couple tips: 1.Tibet was a bit tough due to high altitude - if we knew, we'd ask for the room with oxygen - they are about $40-50 more per night, but totally worth it. 2.There is optional ERA show in Shanghai, but if you want to see it, you need to book it at least 2 months in advance. We didn't know, so we had to miss it. 3.I'd recommend you take some toilet paper with you, when you head for excursions.
lucian1939

5.0

Wonderful time in Beijing Cian and Shanghai for a ten day period. Covered the Great Wall in Beijing, Terracotta Warriors in Cian and the Bund in Shanghai. Also visited the Silk Factory, Muslim Street, French area and a Cultural Show (which was great and should not be missed) and also a Private Garden. The Tour Guides and Drivers went to great lengths to make us visit as memorable as possible and attending to us round the clock.
murukankl

5.0

I went to China with my family( wife & two children) for sightseeing on 16th June 2017 for a seven days itinerary in China, three days in Hongkong & three days in Singapore . We booked our flight, hotel rooms and train tickets by our self from UAE. Hotel booking we made through Booking.com . After evaluating the charges of various tour operators in China through internet ,we engaged TCT ( Top China Travel ) for our sightseeing arrangement in China – Beijing , Xian and Shanghai. We requested for one private vehicle and English speaking guide. One Miss. Joyce was our contact person in TCT. Thanks for Joyce, she arranged everything perfectly . We reached Beijing at 2300hrs and our guide Mr. Jack receive us at Beijing airport and adrop us in the Shangri-la hotel. They provided a six setter Toyota van exclusively for us . Jack stayed with us till we completed check in to the room. Jack speak good English and sound knowledge about all the monuments, shopping area, good restaurants in Beijing area. We spent three days in Beijing- Great wall in cable car, Summer palace, Lama Temple, Beijing Zoo to see Panda and went to Xian by fast train. Train tickets we purchased online and they deliver to our hotel one day prior to our arrival in Beijing. Fast train is very neat and tidy. Seat arrangements are similar to flight- two seat on each side. There is a shelf for storing large size baggage neat the entrance. Hand baggage could be stored in the overhead storage area .Train was moving at a speed of 280-315 Km per hour, but we don’t feel any vibration inside the train. Clean toilets are provided in each compartments. It is advisable to take fast train instead of domestic flights in China. Xian our Guide was waiting for us at railway station –Miss. Christina . She also was very professional ,sound knowledge of xian sightseeing places. She use to give us a perfect description /history of each monuments to us in the vehicle on the way to each location. Terracotta warriors, Xian museum , Art museum are main highlights of Xian. We went Xian to Shanghai in flight . our Guide Christina accompany us to air port till we receive our boarding pass. In china an English speaking guide is essential to support us everywhere , since local people cannot communicate in English- even at KFC very difficult to purchase food. But in Xian Air port ,our 1700 Hrs flight cancelled at 2300hrs and send us to a local hotel by airline. Next day morning they arranged flight Xian to Shanghai . As per our fellow passengers flight cancellation is quite normal in China. Hence Fast train is always better for domestic trip . Due to flight cancellation our sightseeing time was very limited in Shanghai. TCT Guide Mr.Mark tried his best to show us maximum locations. Miss.Joyce was in touch with us in Whatsup and extended her full support to make our trip comfortable. In Beijing and Shanghai we cancelled few prearranged sightseeing due to bad weather and lack of time. But TCT refund the charges for such cancelled sightseeing . It is really appreciated, normally tour operators will not refund . We paid 30% of TCT charges to them by TT from Dubai and remaining amount by Cash US$ at Beijing . Our hotel Shangri-la at HaiDian -Beijing was very good and Sheraton at Xian & Shanghai was also comfortable . Most of the hotels in China serve pork items ,was the only thing not comfortable for my family. It is worth visiting China and I can recommend TCT since they are very cooperative , professional and reasonable price . Best time to visit China is during spring –ie April- May
Til R

5.0

We were met at the airport by Christina Xiena from TCT at Xi'an train station. She was curtious and extremely knowledgeable. She started telling us the history of our scheduled itinerary in the car on the way to the hotel. That inspired and excited us for our upcoming visit to Xi'an. She was enthusiastic, energetic and protective. The hotel was great too. She took us to the Terracotta Army excavations, the Huashan Mountain, Thai Chi demonstration on the Wall of the City, calligraphy at the TangBo Museum, arranged our massages at her local salon (amazing!), Muslem area trip, pearl factory, lots of food and shopping. She was so willing to accommodate our every whim. She put me and my friend on the plane to Shanghai and helped us get our extra luggage on the plane using contacts from her travel company. In Shanghai we were met by Vicky. Another great guide. She knew how to get us around the city and most certainly spoke very good English. She took us to the Silk factory, Bottle opener building (Shanghai financial center) , Water city (unexpected add-on to the tour), Buddhist temple, plenty shopping and food. The hotel was great again. We recommend this travel company. You will never be disappointed. You can trust them from all angles.
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