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8 Days Badain Jaran Desert Panorama Trekking Tour

Memorable Desert Expedition


Trekking in the Badain Jaran Desert is one-of-a-kind experience, and the mysterious desert truly makes for an off-the-beaten-track adventure. You are provided with intriguing landscapes that bring a sense of wildness, space and remoteness all the time, especially when you trek to the summit of the world’s highest sand peak and overlook the vast desert stretching to the horizon. Desert trekking is also a good way to liberate you from the stress, exhaustion and boredom in the fast-paced modern world. Don’t get frightened by the heatwave in most deserts in the world. But in Badain Jaran Desert, heat is never a problem. With rich underground water and more than 144 dotted lakes, Badain Jaran Desert is a temperate desert, which makes the trekking more enjoyable.

Our indicative trekking private tour takes you to explore the remote routes, look for the lovely lakes and hike the dancing sand dunes in Badain Jaran Desert. Camp under the shining stars or stay in local nomads’ house. A camel team will be arranged to support your trekking. Pack and come now!

When is the best time to trek Badain Jaran Desert?
- May, June, September, October

When are the altitudes of Badain Jaran Desert?
- 1200m~1600m; sand dunes heights: 1m~500m

Is it safe to trek Badain Jaran Desert?
- Yes. You will be led by a professional desert trekking team usually made of guides, porters, camel, chef, etc. There are Mongol villages to get supply. Dangerous area is forbidden.

Basic Trip Information

from Request
  1. 1. This price is for one person, based on a group of 2 adults sharing one double-bed room in a 4-star hotel and traveling in low seasons;
  2. 2. This price is subject to change according to your traveling season, group size, hotel class, change of activities and possible fluctuation of currency exchange rate.
Travel Route:
Badain Jaran Town - Badain Jaran Desert - Badain Jaran Town
Travel Length:
Tour Code:
Group Size:
You, your family, friends or group
Any day you want
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Full Itinerary Day by day

Day 1 Badain Jaran Town Arrival

Today is free for you to get to Badain Jaran Town which is about 65km from Badain Jaran Desert National Park.

Badain Jaran Town is the headquarter of Alxa Right Banner of Inner Mongolia. The nearest airports are located in Zhangye and Jinchang which are about 2~3 hours’ drive away from Badain Jaran Town. Currently, you can take flights to Zhangye(张掖)/Jinchang(金昌) from Beijing, Xian, Chengdu, Lanzhou, etc. Our tour guide and driver will pick up you from nearby airport/train station, then transfer to Badain Jaran Town.

Accommodate in Badain Jaran Town.

Badain Jaran Town

Day 2 Park Entrance - Baoritaolegai (B, D) / Trekking distance: about 20km

Drive about 1 hour from your hotel to the entrance of Badain Jaran Desert. Meet the camel team, and then trek about 20km in the desert to Baoritaolegai. The sand dunes in Baoritaolegai are more than 200 meters high. Sliding down from the ridge of the sand dunes and rubbing the sand with your fingers, you can hear the sand roaring like airplanes or thunder, which can be heard clearly from a few kilometers away.

Camp for overnight. Freshwater provided at the camp site.

Day 3 Baoritaolegai – Wuheertu - Nuoertu (B, D) / Trekking distance: about 20km

After breakfast, clean the camp site, then start hiking. Take a middle rest at Wuheertu, then keep hiking to Nuoertu - the biggest lake in the desert. On a sunny day, the sandy dunes are reflected in the lake, and the reeds cast shadows on the sandy hills, forming a gorgeous view.

Camp for overnight. Freshwater provided at the camp site.

Day 4 Nuoertu – Bilutu - Yinderitu Spring (B, D) / Trekking distance: about 17km

After breakfast, trek to Bilutu which is the highest sand dune in the world with an altitude of 1611 meters. The final destination of today is Yinderitu Spring. It is the largest salt lake in the desert. There are 108 tiny springs gushing out from the small isle in the central lake. It is said that the water quality is excellent and contains many elements needed by the human body. Standing by the lake, you can overlook mount Bilutu, which is known as "Mount Everest of the desert".

Camp for overnight. Freshwater provided at the camp site.

A stunning lake in Badain Jaran Desert, Picture Shared by Chiu from Canada in September 2023 Echoing sand dunes at Baoritaolegai Brave hikers in Badain Jaran Desert

Day 5 Yinderitu Spring – Bagejilin – Fairy Peak - Badain Jaran Temple (B, D) / Trekking distance: about 15km

After breakfast, trek about 15km to today’s destination – Badain Jaran Temple. Make middle stop at Bagejilin (lake) and trek to the top sand dune of Fairy Peak. Badain Jaran Temple is a restored Tibetan monastery, built in 1755 A.D. The temple sits at the lakeside of charming Badain Jaran Lake. This area is the most populated place in Badain Jaran Desert, the activity center of local herdsmen of Badain Jaran Village.

Accommodation can be camping, staying in local Mongol yurt, or local guest house. Tell your preference to your travel consultant in advance. Shower is available here.

Day 6 Badain Jaran Temple – Dabusutu (B, D) / Trekking distance: about 21km

Start trekking in the morning. You will arrive at Dabusutu Lake in the afternoon.

Camp for overnight. Freshwater provided at the camp site.

Day 7 Dabusutu - Badain Lake (B, D) / Trekking distance: about 21km

Today, you will trek to Badain Lake. Badain Lake is one of the few freshwater lakes in the Badain Jaran Desert. It's the nearest lake to the entrance of the desert scenic area. Not far from Badain Lake, there stands a sand sculpture of Genghis Khan. One or two hundred meters away is a cold and lonely Salt Lake.

Accommodation can be camping, staying in local Mongol yurt, or local guest house. Tell your preference to your travel consultant in advance. Shower is available.

Badain Jaran Temple, Picture Shared by Chiu from Canada in September 2023 Camel Riding Experience in Badain Jaran Desert, Picture Shared by Chiu from Canada in September 2023 Family camping in Badain Jaran Desert
Day 8 Departure (B, L)

Today you will exist Badain Jaran Desert. The trekking starts after breakfast, and finish around noon time when you reach the park entrance. Take some time to visit Badain Jaran Geo-park Museum to learn some useful geography and cultural information about this China’s most beautiful desert.

Have lunch before leaving for next destination. (Departure tips: the nearest airport is Jinchang Airport where you can take flights to Xian, Lanzhou, Chengdu, Beijing, etc. If you want to transfer to Zhangye or other places in the region with our private car services, please contact your travel consultant in advance.)

Badain Lake is equipped with many tourist facilities

Badain Jaran Desert Trekking Tips

Physical demands & age advice

Desert trekking demands strong physical energy and willpower. One usually needs to trek about 15~20km, approximately 5~8 hours each day. If you are interested in desert hiking, you should be fitted enough, keep exercising before your trek, or attend some training if you haven’t had any desert camping experience. Desert camping is not recommended for travelers who have hypertension, heart disease, cerebral hemorrhage, coronary heart disease, etc., and who are aged over 60 years old.

What services/costs are included in your tour?

Our desert tour including services of tour planning and organizing, trekking guide, accommodation (camping/guesthouse), porters, camels for porting and riding (based on your group size), meals (usually breakfast+dinner, or breakfast+lunch, based on actual itinerary), national park ticket, environment protection fee, etc.

What gears are provided?

Tent, moisture-proof pad, sleeping bag (you can bring your own), luggage bags,

Shared gears

Cooking gears, tables, light, interphone, first-aid packet, etc.

What is Badain Jaran Desert weather like?

The Badain Jaran Desert has a temperate continental desert climate, with extremely arid climate and scarce precipitation. The annual average temperature is 7-8℃ (absolute maximum temperature is 37-41℃ / absolute minimum temperature is -37~-30℃). The highest temperature can reach 38-43℃ in July and August. The temperature of the sand surface is 70~80℃. Sunlight and UV is strong. The annual average wind speed is 4 meters per second.

Clothing advice

Bring outdoor windproof, sandproof, and quick-drying clothes; bring sunblock items like sunglasses (goggles),

sunhat, sunscreen, headscarves, masks, to reduce skin exposure, and remember to cover your neck. In the morning and evening, wear a light warm coat, or down jacket and take off at noon.

Shoes advice

Wear high-top climbing shoes or desert boots when crossing the desert on foot and bring a sandproof shoe cover.

Recommended packing list

Large backpack 60L, small backpack 20-30L, rain cover, jacket, 3 quick-drying clothes, 2 quick-drying pants, 2 T-shirts, fleece pants, 2 sets of sweat-wicking underwear, high-top mountaineering shoes or desert boots, slippers or beach shoes, snow cover, 3 pairs of coolmax socks, headband, gloves, hat, sunglasses, goggles, camera, camera battery 2-4, memory card, knife, toilet paper, trekking pole, towel, soap, toothbrush, razor, water container, lifeguard whistle, notebook, pen, headlight, flashlight, mobile phone, watch, money, bank card, food bag, chopsticks, spoon, water cup, charger (mobile phone, camera battery), transparent glue, rubber rope, lipstick, personal medicine.

What to eat and drink during your trek?

During your desert trek, you usually have breakfast and dinner at the camping site, and bring some snacks to eat during your trek. Our chef or tour guide will cook breakfast and dinner for you. Breakfasts are usually bread, instant noodles, with hot water. Dinners are provided with vegetable, rice, meats, and fruits. You can tell us your food requirement beforehand so that our support team can prepare accordingly.

You should pack some snacks with you for everyday trek, such as trail mix, nuts, seeds, nut-based bars, dried or freeze-dried fruits and veggies, energy bars, chews or gels, shelf-stable, dried jerky, such as poultry, salmon or meat jerky, etc. All these snacks should be easy-to-carry and ready-to-eat.

It’s essential to stay hydrated. The camp site will provide boiled water. You can bring 1 big or two small water bottles to collect them. Before hiking, you are suggested to drink 3~4 cups of water, so you have less to carry.

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