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5 Days Danxia Badain Jaran Desert Tour from Zhangye

Geography Miracles Exploration

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Why explore Badain Jaran Desert with Zhangye? Because they perfectly match each other! Located only about 160km from Danxia Badain Jaran Desert, and served by frequent flights and bullet trains, Zhangye is the best gateway to Danxia Badain Jaran Desert with comfortable private cars available. Furthermore, traveling Zhangye with Badain Jaran Desert is a miracle tour of geography. The “Rainbow Mountains” of Zhangye Danxia Landform Geo-park presents you the extraordinary talent of our Mother Nature’s usage of colors, while Badain Jaran Desert is the masterpiece of Mother Nature’s skill of carving. The undulating sand dunes are the best proof.

Our 5 Days Zhangye Danxia Badain Jaran Desert Private Tour takes you to explore three unique geographic miracles – Zhangye Danxia, Badain Jaran Desert and isolated Pingshan Lake Grand Canyon which is located on the way from Zhangye to Badain Jaran. They are well organized in a leisure-paced itinerary. Enjoy a worry-free adventure which includes hotel, tour guide, transfer, meals, attraction sightseeing, etc.

Highlights of this tour

  • A full day exploration of unparalleled Danxia Landforms, including “Rainbow Mountains” in Zhangye Danxia Landform Geographical Park, unique Binggou Danxia Landform Scenery Area and amazing sunset over Danxia Landform;
  • 2 full-day adventure in Badain Jaran Desert with many authentic experiences, including riding desert Jeep, walking, sunset, sunrise, Mongol yurt camping, etc.;
  • Discover “unique Mars scenery” in Pingshan Lake Grand Canyon which is full of off-the-beaten-track experiences.

Basic Trip Information

Price:
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:
Zhangye - Badain Jaran Town - Badain Jaran Desert
Travel Length:
Tour Code:
CD-BDJLDT-05
Group Size:
You, your family, friends or group
Experience:
CampingCultureHikingPhotograph
Departure:
Any day you want

Full Itinerary Day by day

Day 1 Zhangye Arrival

Welcome to Zhangye, a key town of the Silk Road, the major thoroughfare of New Eurasian Land Bridge and national historical and cultural city! Your tour guide will meet you at Zhangye Ganzhou Airport (or railway station), then escort you to your hotel in a private vehicle. The rest of today is on your own to relax in this historical city.

Arrival Ideas: Zhangye is not a very popular transportation hub like Lanzhou and Xining. Currently, it is usually reached by flights from Xian, Lanzhou, Chengdu, Beijing and Guangzhou. You can also get there by high speed trains from Lanzhou (4 hrs), Xining (2hrs), Xian (7.5hrs), Dunhuang (4hrs), Jiayuguan (1.5hrs), Urumqi (8hrs), and so on.

Welcome to Zhangye (Drum Tower)
Day 2 Zhangye Danxia Sightseeing (B, L)

Zhangye is famous for its unparalleled Danxia Landforms which is a spectacular petrographic geomorphology landscape formed from red-colored sand stones and conglomerates. Among all the Danxia places in Zhangye, Binggou Danxia Landform Scenery Area and Zhangye Danxia Landform Geographical Park (Linze Danxia) have most significant Danxia landscapes. Today you will go to explore both of them.

After breakfast, you will go to visit Binggou Danxia Landform first which is about 1 hour's driving from Zhangye downtown. Even though just being visited by fewer travelers, Binggou Danxia Landform Scenery Area has its own featured charms. If the Linze Danxia Scenery is a visual feast of colors, then the Binggou Danxia is a great joy to find how the Mother Nature became a sculptor who sculptured the mountains to amazing different shapes, like grand palaces, long corridors, giant pillars, etc. You will hike leisurely about 2 hours to look the spectacular landform closely.

In the afternoon, drive about 30mins to visit the Zhangye Danxia Landform Geographical Park which was formed in the pre-Jurassic Age. Thousands of mountains and stiffs stretch like the colorful sunset glow. The barren mountains are covered by a red grit rock stratum. At the same time, some surfaces of mountains appear other colors, such as white, yellow, etc, and form many irregular lines and blocks looking like some abstract oil paintings. There are five viewing decks for you to watch and shoot. You will visit one by one, and will be transferred by park buses from one deck to another.

You won't miss the precious opportunity to enjoy the amazing sunset. Viewing Deck No. 4 is the best location to take sunset of the Danxia Landform. It's better to get there earlier to occupy a good location. After sunset, drive back to Zhangye downtown for accommodation.

Useful Tips:  1) Pack with sun creams, sun glasses, protective clothing and hat to protect from strong sunlight in summer; 2) sunset is the best time for taking photos which happen around 19:00~20:00 in summer and 18:00~19:00 in winter.

Zhangye Danxia Landform Views After Rain Zhangye Danxia Landform Photography Binggou Danxia Landform
Day 3 Zhangye - Badain Jaran Town (B, L)

After breakfast, you will go to visit the famous Giant Buddha Temple which is famous for having the largest indoor sleeping Buddha in Asia. This temple is a large complex with regal arrangements built in Xixia Dynasty(1098), and keeps many precious Buddhist scriptures and wall paintings. Its famous treasure is the Sleeping Buddha which is the centrally seated, symmetric buildings situate along the sides. The Buddha statue was carved by woods with a length of 34.5 meters, telling the story of Buddha’s Nirvana. His ears are as big as the space in which 4 adults can sit side by side.

Finishing the Giant Buddha Temple visit, drive about 160 kilometers(2hrs) to Badain Jaran Town, the largest town near Badain Jaran Desert. On route, you will take an excursion trip to Pingshan Lake Grand Canyon Scenic Area where the rock is peculiar in shape. You can find “human, bird, animal, and pagoda”. It has been praised as "comparable to the Grand Canyon of Colorado" by well-known geological experts and tourists at home and abroad, and it is the new discovery of the Silk Road!

Stay overnight in Badain Jaran Town.

Giant Buddha Temple Pingshan Lake Grand Canyon Scenic Area
Day 4 Badain Jaran Desert Jeep Safari & Exploration (B, L)

Visiting Route: Geo-park Museum - Badain Lake - Dagetu - Fairy Peak - Yinderitu Spring - Bilutu - Badain Jaran Temple (The final route is subject to change according to weather and time condition)

After breakfast, drive about 1 hour from your hotel to the entrance area of the desert park to visit Badain Jaran Geo-park Museum first to learn some useful geography and cultural information about this China’s most beautiful desert. UNESCO experts claim that Badain Jaran Desert includes “unique desert aeolian features of the most concentrated distribution area of mega-dunes and inter-dunal lake basins, constituting irreplaceable natural heritage values”.

Start your thrilling and exciting Badain Jaran off-road adventure now! Hop on a desert Jeep, and drive head to the heartland of the desert. As a vast desert covering over 45,000 square kilometers, Badain Jaran Desert’s highlighting lakes and sand dunes can only be reached by SUV unless you will have to trek several days through the desert. The driving goes to Badain Jaran Temple in the deep desert where a Mongol yurts camp sets up on the side of a lake for travelers to stay over the night.

There are a lot of stops at the most beautiful points, such as Badain Lake, desert oasis, Genghis Khan Sand Carving, Dagetu Lake, Yinderitu Spring, Temple Lake, etc. You will also go up to Bilutu which is the highest sand dune in the world with an altitude of 1611 meters. You will reach at Badain Jaran Temple, known as the Forbidden City in the Desert, after about 4~5 hours driving. The rest time is free to explore the beauty of the desert till the sunset time.

Tonight you will accommodate in a Mongol yurt in the middle of the desert which is comfortable (for a yurt) with shower available, but the toilet is basic and placed outside the camp.

Pack and Wear Right – Very Important? - bring only necessary things to the desert, such as water, sunglasses, sunblocking cream, camera, dramamine (for possible carsickness during desert driving), etc. Take a towel, shower gel, shampoo if you want to take a shower. Your luggage can be remained in our car or hotel in Badain Jaran Town.

Exciting Jeep Safari in deep land of Badain Jaran Desert Dadetu Lake - magic red lake in Badain Jaran Desert Badain Jaran Temple, a Tibetan monastery in deep Badain Jaran Desert
Day 5 Badain Jaran Desert Half-day Tour & Departure (B, L)

Visiting Route: Badain Jaran Temple - Barun Jaran - Barunyikeri - Heavenly Lake - Entrance(The final route is subject to change according to weather and time condition)

Get up at about 5:30~6.00 A.M in the morning, find a good sunrise location on the sand mountain to wait for the first ray of golden sunlight to shine on the stretches of desert. The sunrise at Badain Jaran Desert is a true feast to eyes. It’s a striking combination of light and shadow. At the daybreaking time, the sun seems to be playing the hide-and-seek with people. It then rises gradually like a dancing sparrows from the horizon, and project her golden light upon the sea of sand. Soak yourself in this sun-drenched otherworldly scene, and let the golden light and cool desert air wash over you. After the sunrise, return to the camp site.

After breakfast, keep on Jeep Safari adventure. You will make a stop at Barun Jaran (Barunjilin), a stunning lake which is a great place to take photo of sand dunes’ reflection. You will also go to visit Barunyikeri where two lakes are divided by an edge of sand dunes, and Heavenly Lake (Tianchi), a lovely lake suitable for photography.

You will exit the desert park around the noon time. 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.)

Magnificent sunrise in Badain Jaran Desert A stunning lake in Badain Jaran Desert in October

Recommended Add-on Options

+2 more days to explore cultural and natural miracles in Dunhuang

Located in the northwest of Gansu and the westernmost of Hexi Corridor, Dunhuang is the most brilliant pearl along the ancient Silk Road. The city has sealed huge art treasury and created oasis in the desert. You can closely see the fantastic Buddhist sculptures, murals in World Cultural Heritage - Mogao Caves, visit Crescent Lake surrounded by Mingsha Mountain, view unique Yardang landform, ancient passes and more impressive scenery here.

You can take a 2-day brief trip to Dunhuang covering top highlights. On the day 1, you can go to Echoing Sand Mountain and Crescent LakeE together, witness the wonder of nature, try some exciting activities, like desert camel riding, sand sliding, motorcycling, etc., later return to Dunhuang city to hunt for local flavors at Shazhou Night Market. Day 2 is fully for your Mogao Caves tour. First watch introduction movies about the caves in the Digital Exhibition Center, and then visit specific caves in Mogao Grottoes one by one, learning Buddhist story, Chinese culture and history, which you can’t help admiring this precious land of art.

the Mogao Grottoes in Dunhuang
+2 more days to Jiayuguan with an excursion to Yulin Caves

Jiayuguan Pass is about 370 km away from Dunhuang. It used to be the starting point of the ancient Great Wall built during Ming Dynasty (1368 – 1644), also the most important military defensive project guarding the far northwestern area of China because of its strategic location at the narrowest point of the western section of the Hexi Corridor which had been the vital defensive frontier since Han Dynasty (BC 202—220). 

You can travel from Dunhuang to Zhangye by car. Most classic itinerary is to leave Dunhuang in the morning, then drive about 4~5 hours to Jiayuguan with an excursion visit to Yunlin Caves, which is the "little sister" of Mogao Caves. In Jiayuguan, you can spend either a half day tour or a full day visiting Jiayuguan Fortress, Hanging Great Wall and other sites in the region.

Jiayuguan Fort

Recommended or Similar Tour Packages You May Also Like

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6 Days Hexi Corridor Discovery Tour(Zhangye/Jiayuguan/Dunhuang)

Lanzhou - Zhangye - Jiayuguan - Dunhuang

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3 Days Badain Jaran Desert Real Essence Tour with Jeep Safari

Badain Jaran Town - Badain Jaran Desert

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    +2 more days to Jiayuguan with an excursion to Yulin Caves

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