China Silk Road tour

“Two week small group tour from Xi'an to Kashgar on the border with Tibet. Travel by train and plane to some of the key cultural sites on China's fabled Silk Road.”


Xi'an | Qin Terra-Cotta Army | Shanxi History Museum | Bingling Temple Grottoes | Yellow River | Giant Buddha Temple | Zhangye | Qilian Mountains | Great Gobi Desert | Singing Sand Mountains | Dunhuang City | Yadan National Geologic Park | Caves of the Thousand Buddha | Gaochang Ancient City | Turpan | Wood Valley of the Flame Mountain | Kashgar | Tashkurgan | Karakuri Lake | Muztagh Mountain | Heavenly Lake Heavenly Lake | Bogda Peak of Tian Shan |

Description of China Silk Road tour

This two week China Silk Road tour unveils the mysteries and historic sites of this legendary trading trail between Asia and Europe starting in the ancient city of Xi'an famed for its historic bell tower, city walls and, of course, the Terracotta Army of Qin Shi Huang.

An efficient domestic flight eastwards takes this China Silk Road tour to Lanzhou whereupon sites such as the grottoes of Bingling Temple as well as Wuwei and Zhangye provide an incredibly authentic glimpse at life off the beaten track prior to reaching the city of Dunhuang.

Dunhuang, especially, will resonate with cultural travellers with the Buddhist artwork contained within the Magao Caves offering insight into how religion has long played a part in the ancient and modern history of China as experienced throughout this two week Silk Road tour.

A visit to China's last remaining ancient minaret in Turpan takes this Silk Road tour into new territory as you begin to explore the Gobi Desert where the Flaming Mountains and the city of Kashgar offer further insight into the part that Islam has played within China's history.

Kashgar's market places allow travellers on a China Silk Road tour to glimpse an authentic slice of local life where arts, crafts and food are sold against a backdrop of domed mosques and Muslim traditions.

As this two week China Silk Road tour comes to a close you'll fly back to Umqui and the Heavenly Mountains and Lake of Tian Chi before finally waving farewell to China with a head full of memories and a camera full of photographs.

Travel Team

If you would like some help or advice, or just want to discuss your ideas for your next trip, do give us a call.


Check dates, prices & availability

27 Aug 2019
US $3984
including domestic flights only
Click here to enquire about or book the 27 Aug 2019 departure
17 Sep 2019
US $3984
including domestic flights only
Departure Guaranteed
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08 Oct 2019
US $3984
including domestic flights only
Click here to enquire about or book the 08 Oct 2019 departure
12 May 2020
US $3735
including domestic flights only
Click here to enquire about or book the 12 May 2020 departure
09 Jun 2020
US $3875
including domestic flights only
Click here to enquire about or book the 09 Jun 2020 departure
15 Sep 2020
US $3984
including domestic flights only
Click here to enquire about or book the 15 Sep 2020 departure
13 Oct 2020
US $3984
including domestic flights only
Click here to enquire about or book the 13 Oct 2020 departure
Top tip:
Take a blow up pillow for the drives, a headscarf for the desert and sensible walking shoes. Also, keep a diary that you can update on flights and train rides - remember to leave space on the pages so you can add photos when you return home.
Trip type:
Small group.
Activity level:
Active. Overland drives, camel rides, hiking and leisurely walks.
Twin bed accomm in good standard hotels. Soft sleeper train and night flight.
14 breakfasts and 14 lunches.
Accomm, domestic flights, transfers, sleeper train, entrance fees, English speaking guide, and camel ride in Gobi Desert.
About this holiday company:
This company specialise in tailor made active holidays across China for people who prefer independent travel away from tourist hot spots. They work closely with local businesses and communities to offer an authentic experience that benefits both travellers and local people alike.

Responsible tourism

Responsible tourism: China Silk Road tour


This tour will transport you to an eclectic and culturally significant range of heritage sites that date back to ancient times and it will also take you to unique places of natural beauty, including lakes, deserts and mountain ranges of spectacular beauty. It therefore exceptionally important that we fully understand and appreciate the importance of developing tours that are sustainable and reduce the impacts of tourism on the human and natural environment wherever possible. Indeed, all of our tours maintain a great respect for the cultural and natural surroundings in which we visit and travel, and we have opted to use only essential methods of public or private transport for this itinerary.

To help us protect and preserve what remains of both China’s wonderful cultural and natural heritage, we ask that all of our travel participants help care for the environments they visit by being respectfully aware of the unique locations we take them to. The importance of sustainable travel, particularly in sensitive natural environments and ecosystems, is something we also value highly. As a bonus of our unique approach, you will also discover that our tour groups are small in size so that are impacts are minimised, and of course, so that we can afford you the attention you deserve!


Our itinerary has been designed to fully incorporate the local communities of the regions we visit. We value their unique insights, knowledge, and hospitality, and believe that they too should benefit from tourism too. We respect their traditions and beliefs, and are acutely aware of the need to respect indigenous people and religious sites in particular.

Wherever possible, we use locally-owned guesthouses, hotels, restaurants, and services to ensure that local communities and business prosper in a highly competitive market. An added bonus of using locally-owned services and people is that they will often be highly enthusiastic, generous and proud to welcome you into the places where many have been born and raised.

We are also exceptionally aware of the need to use local ‘green’ tourism services and businesses to ensure that the natural and social environments that host tourism are protected and well-managed. This includes the use of locally-sourced produce such as food and crafts, for example. However, perhaps one of the greatest reasons for using locally-owned accommodation is that you will see the ‘real’ China in its various guises. You will sample traditional villages, entertainment shows, cuisines and ways of life that can be significantly different to anything you may have experienced before. We will also take you to incredible places away from the tourist crowds to ensure that your experiences are genuinely unique. We fully believe that this is a wonderful way to learn about this spectacular country and have no doubt that you will agree!

1 Reviews of China Silk Road tour

5 out of 5 stars

Reviewed on 28 Aug 2018 by

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your holiday?

The people we met, the range of places we visited, the quality of our guides. The drive through the Karakoram Mountain range from Kashgar to Tashkurgen

2. What tips would you give other travellers booking this holiday?

Don't go with any fixed ideas about what it might be like. Be open to everything you see.

3. Did you feel that your holiday benefited local people, reduced environmental impacts or supported conservation?


4. Finally, how would you rate your holiday overall?

The holiday was excellent and I would recommend it to others.
If I was redesigning the itinerary I would not include the Yadan National Geologic Park - too much driving in one day.
Include a visit to Yar ancient city
Have the extra day by not visiting the national geological park in Urumqi

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