- Itinerary Details
- Service Included
- Trip Notes
8 Days Northern Xinjiang Tour
- Itinerary Details
- Service Included
- Trip Notes
Xinjiang has always been regarded as the heart of the Silk Road; and as its center point it holds countless relics left by the ancient civilizations that used it. Spending 9 days traveling across this ancient region is a great opportunity to explore the exotic cultures and mysterious history of the old Silk Road. The first destination city of the tour is Urumqi, the capital city of Xinjiang. Your local guide and driver will pick you up at the airport or railway station upon your arrival to escort you to your hotel and help you check in. You will have the rest of the day to rest and relax from your long trip to Xinjiang. We will begin your amazing Silk Road adventure first thing tomorrow morning.
Your tour will begin with the wonderful natural scenery of Tianchi Lake. After breakfast, we will drive to the lake, located about 110 kilometers (68 miles) east of the city of Urumqi. The lake is formed from the melted snow of the Tianshan Mountain and lies in the shape of a crystal crescent in the valley below the mountain. We’ll spend half a day walking along the shore or boating on the lake, with fantastic views of the mountains, grasslands and the riotous colors of the countless wildflowers against the backdrop of an incredibly blue sky. Once we have had enough sightseeing at Tianchi Lake, we will drive on to Fuyun to enjoy the natural landscapes there.
After breakfast, we will drive to visit the Keketuo Sea. Keketuo, which means “green jungle” in Kazakh and “blue bay” in Mongolian, refers to the blue and green combined color of the sea. We’ll arrive in Burqin in the late afternoon so that you will have time to enjoy the local nightlife with time to sample the locally brewed Burqin beer.
Burqin is a small county located in on the Chinese borders with Russia, Kazakhstan and Mongolia. Burqin is the last stop before you get to the Kanas Lake. After breakfast, we’ll make the 3-hour drive to Jiadengyu, the entrance gate to Kanas Lake. From there we will take the local shuttle bus to reach Kanas Lake. After arriving at the lake, we will transfer to a boat to further explore this fantastically beautiful lake as you take in the sights of Laying Dragon Bay, Immortal Bay and Moon Bay.
After breakfast, we will make the drive to the Hemu Village to visit some local Tuwa families. This small place has been ranked by China National Geography as one of the six most beautiful villages in all of China. In the afternoon, we will continue the tour by driving on to visit Five Colored Bay, which is a wonderful place for photography. We will drive back to Burqin to spend the night.
This morning we will drive back to Urumqi with some fun sightseeing stops along the way. As we pass through the western edge of the Dzungarian Basin, we will stop at Karamay to explore the ancient and unique Yardang landforms there. One highlight of the area is knows as “Ghost City”, named for the ghostly sound of the wind blowing through the wind-eroded rock formations rather than for its appearance. We will also visit the Hundred Miles Oil Zone before driving on to Urumqi for the night.
Today we will have the opportunity to explore the ancient city of Urumqi. We’ll start off by learning the long history and diverse ethnic groups of the Xinjiang Province at the Xinjiang Museum. This museum will give you an understanding of its past glory and important position on the ancient Silk Road from the historical artifacts on display. At night, you may want to check out some traditional local Xinjiang dancing or sample the local cuisine to get a better idea of how the locals live their lives in this fascinating city.
Today you will have free time until your tour guide escorts you to the Urumqi train station or airport for your departing train or flight.
Price Includes :
Transportation as listed in the itinerary
Local experienced Xinjiang guide
Lodging and meals for the driver and guide
Travel agency service charges and taxes
Accommodations as listed in the itinerary
Urumqi airport pick up and drop off
Meals as listed in the itinerary
Entrance tickets to the sightseeing places listed in the itinerary
Tips for the guide and driver
Price Excludes :
China visa, transportation into or out of Urumqi
Personal expenses such as laundry, drinks, faxes, telephone call, optional activities, etc.
Excess baggage charges
Costs not specifically listed as included above
Cultural Taboos and Notes of Interest
Xinjiang's major ethnic minorities are the Uighur, Kazakh and Hui ethnicities. These ethnicities are all followers of the Sunni sect of Islam. Because of historic reasons, Uighur and Kazakh began to gradually adopt Islam since the 8th century AD, so compared with the Hui ethnicity, who adopted Islam from its beginning, they are quite different.
Taboos in Islamic Culture
Food and Drink
Eating pork, dog meat, cat meat or meat from any other animal found dead is considered taboo. Livestock that has not been properly slaughtered by a Muslim cannot be eaten. Not only are these not to be eaten, but utensils that have touched these forbidden foods cannot be used. That includes, kitchenware, bowls, chopsticks, etc. So in order to avoid making contact with these foods, people usually bring their own meals with them and they seldom eat out. It is also taboo to even mention any words relating to "pig". Rice and potatoes are considered the main staple food, and eating beef, mutton, poultry, seafood and other halal foods are considered an expression of wholeheartedness to Allah. When holding important religious ceremonies or large festivals, most people, especially the elderly, are accustomed to keep left-over food.
When it comes to dress, it is considered taboo to wear clothes too short and upper garments are typically worn past the knees. Pants reach down to their footwear and wearing shorts is strongly forbidden. Women are required to cover their heads and their hair must not show.
Muslims are forbidden from drinking alcohol or anything with alcohol content. Lying, issuing high-interest loans, slandering, gambling and worshipping idols is also forbidden.