silk road turpan picture Tuyuq Valley

Urumqi,turpan Hami And Dunhuang Adventure
     Duration: 7 days
The cities of Xinjiang are filled with mystery and excitement. Combine this with the Heavenly Lake in Urumqi, Karez Well, Hami Islamic King Tombs and Mogao Grottoes for the trip of a lifetime.
Day by Day Itinerary
Day 1
Place & Transport: Arrive in Urumqi, Flight.
Today's Activities: Airport to Hotel Transfer (Urumqi),
Day 2
Place & Transport: Urumqi
Today's Activities: Heavenly Lake, Erdaoqiao Market, , Boat for Cruise on the Heavenly Lake
Meals: Breakfast, Chinese Lunch at Jiamu Restaurant
- Heavenly Lake (1 hour): The Heavenly Lake is a very beautiful mountain lake formed more than million years ago in the 4th glacial epoch, so the water in it is pure and icy. The altitude of the lake is up to 2150 meters above the sea level and got its fame as the "jewel in the crown". To the east of the lake stands the Bogda Peak-the highest peak in the east part of Tian Shan Mountain, which is capped by glacier and snow glistening in the sun, finely contrasted with blue lake water, forming fabulous scenery,steep forested hills and high meadows with snow peaks behind.

A 3-hour drive from Urumqi along a good road passes a giant windfarm, wide rivers and pastures and up into the mountains. Tented camps line the river valley before a chair lift takes you up to the lake, which is also a favourite hiking and camping area. There you can walk or take electric carts, and a short boat ride (average 80m deep, 180m at its deepest point). Wear comfortable shoes and take sunburn cream and a light jacket.
- Erdaoqiao Market (1 hour): The Erdaoqiao Bazaar is the largest in Urumqi. You'll find a bustling market filled with fruit, clothing, crafts, knives, carpets and almost anything that you can imagine. On Sunday, there are more stalls and more goods to buy than any other day. The old streets around the bazaar are really worth seeing.
- Boat for Cruise on the Heavenly Lake,: It is a different way to visit Heavenly Lake by boat.
- Jiamu Restaurant : Jiamu is a nationalistic style restaurant, mainly providing Uygur cuisine but no wine allowed while dining. The restroom is in good decoration and there is a short time for live performance during lunch time. Due to some problem for communication as the working staff are Uygur and the higher expense there is few chances to cater to groupsĄŁ
Day 3
Place & Transport: Urumqi to Turpan
Today's Activities: Tuyoq Village and Tuyugou Canyon, Karez Well, Suleiman Minaret
Meals: Breakfast, Chinese Lunch
- Tuyoq Village and Tuyugou Canyon (1.5 hours): The Tuyugou Great Canyon is 46 kilometers away from Shanshan county in the east, 47 kilometers from Turpan city in the west and 13 kilometers from the Gaochang Ancient City in the southwest.Among the canyons in the Flame Mountain which extends nearly one hundred kilometers, the Tuyugou Great Canyon is the canyon with the longest culture and the most mighty and majestic natural landscapes.

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Tuyoq is a traditional village of vineyards, orchards, narrow streets and irrigation channels tumbling between ancient mudbrick houses and shady trees against the backdrop of the bare, red Flaming Mountains. An easy and pretty walk takes you to a group of very ancient caves carved into the mountainside. You can stop and enjoy the surroundings, or climb the steep stairways to view some of the caves, parts of their frescoes still visible, with both Buddhist and Nestorian connections.Karez Well (40 minutes): The Karez Water System Folkways Paradise is located at the Ya'er country in Turpan city, 3 kilometers away from the city Turban, and 2 kilometers away from the 312 national highway in the south. This irrigation system of wells connected by underground channels is considered to be one of the three great ancient projects in China.
The famous fruit and vineyards of these hot, dry desert communities owe their existence to the karez, ancient underground irrigation channels fed by wells that tap into the snowmelt from surrounding mountains. These systems are still maintained and functioning today. A small museum provides an insight into their intriguing history and construction, and takes you below ground for a first-hand view.
- Suleiman Minaret (40 minutes): The Sugong Tower is the biggest ancient pagoda existing in Xinjiang and the only Islamic ancient pagoda in the country. It is located at the Munage village, 2 kilometers away from the Turpan city in the east.
Day 4
Place & Transport: Turpan to Kumul
Today's Activities: Jiaohe Ruin, Pass through the Flaming Mountain, Visit a local Hami Family, Hami Islamic King Tombs
Meals: Breakfast, Chinese Lunch
- Jiaohe Ruin (2 hours): Located in the Yarnaz Valley, 13 kilometers away from the Turpan city in the west, Jiaohe Ruin was built by the old Cheshi people in Qin dynasty and Han dynasty. It was almost dig from natural ground and the tallest building reached three stories high, which is the biggest, oldest and best preserved construction city in the world. The present preservation was descended from Tang dynasty during which period it had its Gold Age.
As you walk the streets of this incredible ruined city lying between two rivers, you can look across to distant vineyards and orchards. Clear streets and roads lead you through different sections and high viewpoints for perspective. Many of the buildings remain, and as the desert wind swirls through in the evenings, it's easy to imagine the hustle and bustle of a once busy city, now deserted. Wear comfortable walking shoes, and take water and sunscreen.
- Pass through the Flaming Mountain (10 minutes): The Flaming Mountain is located on the northern verge of Turpan Basin, more than 10 kilometers away from Turpan city.It is the cradle of the Turpan ancient civilization and oasis agriculture. Eighty percent of the total natural landscapes and human landscapes in Turpan are located here.
- Visit a local Hami Family (20 minutes): Take advantage of this rare opportunity to experience the life, customs and food of a local Hami people family in their ancestral city. Have tea and snacks with the family as they welcome you to Hami.
- Hami Islamic King Tombs (30 minutes): The Hami Islamic King's Tombs were built in 1840s as burial sites for Islamic Kings and their wives. The mausoleum architectural complex covers an area of about 1.3 hectares, surrounded by a wall. It is divided into three parts: Islamic King's Tombs, The Small Arch and Big Aitika mosque. Some of the buildings are elaborately decorated with Islamic art.
Day 5
Place & Transport: Kumul to Dunhuang
Today's Activities: Balikun Grassland, White Stone Scenic Spots
Meals: Breakfast, Chinese Lunch
- Balikun Grassland (2 hours): Located in north eastern of Xinjiang, The Balikun grasslands have abundant water and green grass all year round. The Kazak nomads herd their animals on the rich grass. With an elevation of 1650 meters, surrounded by snow-capped mountains and dotted with verdant pine trees, the scenery in the Balikun grasslands will fascinate you.
- White Stone Scenic Spots (40 minutes): It's located at the north foot of Ka'erkeli Snow Mountain, the main peak of Tianshan in the east. The grassland on high mountains show its unique natural landscape to the people.
Day 6
Place & Transport: Dunhuang
Today's Activities: Desert Discovery at Yadan Landform Park, Yumenguan Pass, The Great Wall of the Han Dynasty
Meals: Breakfast, Chinese Lunch
- Desert Discovery at Yadan Landform Park (2.5 hours): The Evil City:It locates the south to the Wubao town in Hami and 20kms far from Wubao while 100kms far from Hami city. The Evil city is famous for its night sound and vivid rocks in various shapes those look like animals or other world famous attractions in the world.
- Yumenguan Pass (30 minutes): Once as one of the west gates out of the country of the Han Dynasty (206 B. C. -220 A. D.), it is quite ruined by the shifting sands but still shows the ever splendor.
Yumeng Town: The site of China's first oil field
- The Great Wall of the Han Dynasty (30 minutes): Great wall of the Han dynasty was build for defending the nomadic Xiongnu during the Han Dynasty (206 BC--220 AD).
Day 7
Place & Transport: Depart Dunhuang, Flight not included
Today's Activities: Hotel to airport Transfer (Dunhuang), The Crescent Lake and Echoing-Sand Mountain, Mogao Grottoes
Meals: Breakfast, Chinese Lunch
- The Crescent Lake and Echoing-Sand Mountain (2 hours): Crescent Moon Spring is 6km south of Dunhuang in the Singing Sands Mountains and is quite literally an oasis in the desert. The spring's name derives from the crescent moon shape taken by the small pool of spring water between two large sand dunes. Although the area is very dry, the pool doesn't dry up as one might expect
- Mogao Grottoes (3.5 hours): Constructed over a millennium, from the 4th to the 14th centuries, the caves hold the world's richest treasure house of Buddhist sutras, murals and sculptures. It is not allowed to take photos.