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Old Road Tours offers a variety of tours to fit your traveling needs - from short 1 day trips to 20 day treks into the heart of Xinjiang.  If you can't find what you're looking for, we can modify most listed tours or you are welcome to "Build Your Own Tour"  You decide the places to go and adventures to experience!

Silk Road Classic Tour - 12 Days

Visiting the Great Wall in Beijing, the Grape Valley of Turpan, the Buddhist caves of Kuqa, key sites in Kashgar, and the famous Terracotta Warriors of Xi'an, this is sure to be a trip you'll never forget!
    * Prices vary according to group size and season.

Cities to Visit

Beijing, Turpan, Kuqa, Kashgar, Karakul, Xi'an, Beijing, Xinjiang, China, tour / travel

Sites and Specialties

Ancient Chinese Capitals, Oasis Towns, Buddhist Caves, Ancient Mosques, Minority Culture

Cities to Visit

Beijing, Turpan, Kuqa, Kashgar, Karakul, Xi'an, Beijing, Xinjiang, China, tour / travel

Day 1

Our tour guide will pick you up from Beijing airport and help you transfer to your hotel (the 3 Star Chong Wen Men hotel ) or any other hotel you request. After checking in, your tour guide will give you a city map to help you absorb this ancient capital at your own pace on your first day in China.

Day 2

Today we visit the Forbidden City, Tiananmen Square and the Temple of Heaven. A fantastic Beijing Duck dinner then awaits us at the Quan Ju De Restaurant. After dinner we will take an evening stroll together and then return to the hotel.

Day 3

After an early breakfast, we will drive out together to the Badaling section of the Great Wall until around lunch time. Lunch will be in a popular local Sichuan style Restaurant. In the afternoon, you will fly to Urumqi and drive two hours to Turpan. Once there, you will check into your Hotel where you will have dinner in the hotel restaurant.

Day 4

Today you choose from the following sites which ones you want to visit in Turpan: world famous Karez system, Bezeklik Thousand Buddha Caves, the Ancient cities of Idkut (Gaochang), Yargul (Jiao he) and the Astana Tombs.

Your lunch will be a traditional one with a local family.

For dinner, we will arrange a fantastic meal in the popular Grape valley with a local Uyghur folk dance and songs performance. After dinner we will take a relaxing walk together before catching the overnight evening train to Kucha. The train is a soft sleeper.

Day 5

As a sample of local culture, transport from the train station to your hotel will be by donkey cart. Once you are checked in and settled - to either the 3 Star Kucha Fandian or 3 Star Kucha Hotel - we will have local Uyghur food in a popular Kucha restaurant. In the afternoon, we will visit the Kizil Thousand Buddha caves, Subash ancient city and Kizil Kaga Beacon Tower. Dinner will be in the hotel restaurant.

Day 6

Following breakfast, we will visit Kuqa Grand Mosque and the Kuqa Friday Market. The market is one of the most famous in Xinjiang and has a long history. With its plethora of donkey and horse carts, the market is different to most others in Xinjiang and is especially interesting to visit at noon. Lunch today will be in the hotel restaurant and afterwards, we will visit Kucha Grand Mosque. With satisfied bellies from a popular local Uyghur restaurant, you will take an overnight train to Kashgar in soft sleeper class.

Day 7

From Kashgar train station our tour guide will accompany you to your hotel and help you settle in. Depending on you, this can either be the 3 Star Seman Hotel in a Uyghur style building or the 3 Star Qinibag Hotel International building. Lunch will be in the Consul Flavour restaurant at the old British Consulate building. After lunch, we will pay a visit to Kashgar’s famous Id kah mosque and take a stroll around the mosque and down Handicrafts Street. Here you will learn a lot about Uyghurs handicrafts from the experts who are openly making knives, musical instruments, iron tools, cradles, copper kettles, pots and so on. We then return through the old part of the city back to the hotel.

Day 8

Today is market day in Kashgar and time for the famous Sunday market. Before we reach there however, we will first pay a visit to the tomb of Apak Hoja which is one of the best examples of Uyghur Muslim architecture in Xinjiang. Built in 1640, the tomb contains four buildings. The famous one is a large mausoleum with 58 tombs from five generations buried there. Next we will visit the Sunday Market.

No visit to the Sunday Market is forgettable when up to one hundred thousand people gather to shop, browse and sell. There is a very real reason this market is known as the biggest in Central Asia. The livestock market is especially interesting as the way of business still clings to time long past. In any business transaction, the middleman is the independent adjudicator responsible for fair play in any sale and an equitable agreement between both parties. Sales can often get quite rowdy, yet a rough handshake and beaming smile at the end of each says it all.

Your lunch will be at the popular Intezar fast food restaurant or in the Orda Polohanisi (Palace Palau house in Uyghur). In the afternoon we will visit Kashgar Old Town, which is perhaps the most interesting part in Kashgar with over 2000 years of history. A traditional dinner will be served with a Uyghur family in the Old Town consisting of local delicacies. After dinner we will stroll back to your hotel through the atmosphere and history that make Kashgar so alluring.

Day 9

Kashgar - Karakul Lake (190km/118 miles)

Today, we will drive along the Sino-Pakistan Friendship High Way, part of the world famous Karakorum Highway to Pakistan across the Pamir Mountains. Following the Ghez River we travel until the Kum tagh (Sand Mountain). The scenery along the way is spectacular and continues to get better the further we travel. Snow capped peaks of every hue and color tower above a road dotted with the amazing view spots, Kyrgyz villages, Silk Road inns (Caravan Kunalgu) and the friendly smiles of locals.



Our drive culminates in the awesome vista of Karakul Lake. Karakul is one of the highest lakes in the world at 3600m above sea-level. The lake is dominated by two monster peaks that rule over it at either end: the 7546m Muztagh Ata (Father of the Ice Mountains) and 7719m Kongor peak which each attract many high-profile climbers each year to their slopes. At the lake you can ride horses and camels and dine in friendly local yurts on exquisite Kyrgyz food. After lunch you will have 2-3 hours to hike in the nearby mountains before we drive back to Kashgar. The journey should take three hours.

Day 10

Today is your time to explore Kashgar city at leisure. We will arrange traditional Uyghur dinner for you in the Almilik Bagh or Ridilik bagh with a Uyghur folk dance and song show.

Day 11

After a morning flight to Urumqi and connecting flight to Xi'an our tour guide will pick you up from the airport and accompany you to your hotel. Your lunch will be in a Hui (Chinese Muslim) restaurant on the Hui Min Street. After lunch, we will visit the Great Mosque, Bell Tower, Drum Tower, and City Wall as well as the Wild Goose Pagoda.

Day 12

Today we leave early to visit the Terracotta Warriors. Then you can rest until your flight to Beijing or Shanghai in the late afternoon/evening. We will see you off at the Xi'an airport. Our service will end today at the airport.




Special thanks to Stephen McCutchen for helping to edit this tour.

Tour Destinations

Cities to Visit

Beijing, Turpan, Kuqa, Kashgar, Karakul, Xi'an, Beijing, Xinjiang, China, tour / travel

Sites and Specialties

Ancient Chinese Capitals, Oasis Towns, Buddhist Caves, Ancient Mosques, Minority Culture

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