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Top 10 Attractions on the Silk Road

China Silk Road is the most important section of Silk Road. Along this over 4,000 km road, you can experience colorful culture, precious historical relics, beautiful northern and western landscape and authentic ethnic customs. Silk Road covers vast regions of northwestern China, including Henan, Ningxia, Shanxi, Gansu, Qinghai and Xinjiang. Historically the Northwestern region was the birthplace of China civilization. And the Silk Road played an important role during the development of Chinese civilization. You can figure out the reason by exploring many ancient sites. Besides the historical sites, there are also many places for you to enjoy stunning scenery, such as the Yellow River, Danxia Landform, Flaming Mountains, Tianchi Lake, etc.

 Attractions on the Silk Road

Terra-Cotta Warriors

No.1: Terra-Cotta Warriors

Type: History Museums, Ancient Ruins, Historic Sites

Recommended Length of Visit: 3 hours

As one of the most popular traveling destination cities, Xian can offer a variety of choices of accommodation from economy class to luxury class hotels. We have selected some of mostly recommended hotels which have a good travelers ratings, and ensures functional amenities and warm and friendly service. Besides, we have built up good co-operation with these hotels, so they can offer a reasonable price, and can be fully trusted by you.

Big Wild Goose Pagoda

No.2: Big Wild Goose Pagoda

Type: Culture & History, Ancient Building, Buddhism

Recommended Length of Visit: 2 hours

"You have never visited Xian without a visit to the Big Wild Goose Pagoda". That's how a local saying goes. For hundreds years, this great pagoda has always been the symbol of Xian. Big Wild Goose Pagoda(Dayanta in Chinese) is famous for the great traveler Xuanzang of Tang Dynasty who traveled from China to India to learn the Buddhism and got back China with many precious Buddhist scriptures. To place these scriptures, Xuan built the Big Wild Goose Pagoda, and then translated and taught Buddhism here. By the north side of pagoda, it is the largest music fountain in Asia.

Mogao Grottoes

No.3: Mogao Grottoes

Type: Ancient Ruins, Historic Sites

Recommended Length of Visit: 3 hours

Mogao Grottoes, also named “Thousands Buddha Caves”, is regarded as the most valuable discovery in 20th century. It is famed as the “Louvre of East”, which is outstanding for its exquisite mural paintings and statues. There are now 492 grottoes in which about 45000 square meters mural paintings and 2100 colorfully painted statues have been preserved very well. The history of Mogao Grottoes can be traced back to the “Five Hu-16 Kingdoms” period (CD304-439). Mogao Grottoes was constructed by the Prior Qin, and the subsequent dynasties rebuilt and enlarged the scope year by year. In the splendid caves, you will learn much about the evolution of China’s history.

Famen Temple

No.4: Famen Temple

Type: Architectural Buildings, Religious Sites, Museums

Recommended Length of Visit: 2 hours

Famen Temple, renowned as “the Ninth World Wonder” by UNESCO in 2004, is located in Famen Town, Baoji City, Shanxi Province. It was built during late East Han Dynasty with a history more than 1700 years. During Tang and Song Dynasties, Famen Temple was worshiped as Royal Temple. Today Famen Temple is a world famous Buddhist place of pilgrimage because it keeps a finger bone of the Shakyamuni Buddha. The finger bone, together with other many Buddhist treasure relics, is displayed in a fully protected underground palace which is said to be built in Tang Dynasty.

Longmen Grottoes

No.5: Longmen Grottoes

Type: Historic Sites; Caverns/ Caves; Geologic Formations

Recommended Length of Visit: 3 hours

Longmen Grottoes, or Longmen Caves, are located on both banks of Yihe River, 6 km south of Luoyang. Being a UNESCO World Heritage Site, it is known for the large numbers, massive scales, variety of subjects, delicate carving and profound meaning. No matter how little you know about Buddhism or sculpture, you will be impressed by the scale and complexity of the ancient work here. The recommended sightseeing route is West Hill Grottoes – East Hill Grottoes – Xiangshan Temple - Baiyuan Garden. Here, you’ll not only experience the rich culture of grottoes, but also enjoy the beautiful landscape.

Maijishan Grottoes

No.6: Maijishan Grottoes

Type: Historic Sites; Caverns/ Caves

Recommended Length of Visit: 2 hours

The Maijishan Grottoes, together with Longmen Grottoes, Yungang Grottoes and Dunhuang Groggoes, are known as the "Four Greatest Grottoes in China." Caves were chiseled on a hill shaped like a stack of wheat. The ancient artisans carved more than 7800 Buddhist statues with different colors and size. The largest statue, Dongyan Giant Buddha, has a height of 15.8 meters.

 Qinghai Lake

No.7: Qinghai Lake

Type: Lake

Recommended Length of Visit: 5 hours

Qinghai Lake, also known as Kokonor Lake, is the most visited and famous attraction in Qinghai Province. Qinghai, in Mongolian, means “a cyan sea”. It is the largest inland lake, as well as the largest salt water lake in China. Qinghai Lake is surround by high mountains from outside. And on the foot of mountains there is endless beautiful grassland. So you can enjoy the great views by walking, riding or biking. Qinghai Lake is the paradise for birds, which can amount to more than 10 thousand in the summer. While Qinghai Lake covers such a very large area that you can see all highlights in at least a day. Here, you enjoy not only the marvelous natural beauty, but also experience spectacular culture here.

Bezeklik Thousand Buddha Caves

No.8: Bezeklik Thousand Buddha Caves

Type: Caverns/ Caves, Landmarks/ Points of Interest

Recommended Length of Visit: 2 hours

Bezeklik Thousand Buddha Caves is situated on a cliff at the foot of Flaming Mountains, 45km away from Turpan city. There used to be 83 grottoes, and now 57 grottoes have survived. Its highlight is about 40 large wall paintings covering more than 1,200 square meters which have different themes. Among all grottoes, the No. 17 and 18 are the oldest ones built during later Northern and Southern Dynasties (420-589). The No.20 painted portrait of King and Queen of Gaochang Kingdom. The No.33 grotto painted the lord Buddha and his disciples. The No. 38 displays the living scene of the ancient Manichean.

Tianchi Lake

No.9: Tianchi Lake

Type: Lake

Recommended Length of Visit: 4 hours

Tianchi Lake is located on the Tianshan Mountain. In ancient fairytale, it was the fairyland where the Heavenly Queen lived. It is the best summer resort in Xinjiang. Tianchi Lake comes down to a depth of nearly 100m. Ices on the Tianshan Mountain thaw and flow into the Tianchi Lake. Summer is the best time to visit Tianchi Lake. Cruising on a boat, enjoying the breathtaking picturesque views of inverted reflection of snow mountains, flourishing plants and blooming flowers around the lake. Tianchi Lake is about 110km away from Urumqi. There are scheduled bus from Urumqi to the Tianchi Lake every day.

Id Kah Mosque

No.10: Id Kah Mosque

Type: Religious Sites

Recommended Length of Visit: 2 hours

Id Kah Mosque is the largest mosque in China, and one of three largest in middle Asia. It is located on the west of Id Kah Square in Kashgar. Getting close to Id Kah Mosque, you will be impressed by the elegant blue gate of mosque. Id Kah Mosque is the holy land for the Muslims. Every day, there are thousands of Muslims worshipping here. In the history, Id Kah Mosque used to be a school where taught Islam culture. Many scholars and honored clergies graduated from here.

Recommend Silk Road Discovery Tours

Interested in exploring the ancient Silk Road? Following tours are most popular Silk Road deals. All can be customized to meet your need.

6 Days Zhangye Jiayuguan Dunhuang(Silk Road Glory)
(Lanzhou / Zhangye / Jiayuguan / Dunhuang)
10 Days Classic Silk Road Tour
(Xian / Dunhuang / Turpan / Urumqi / Kashgar)
8 Days Xinjiang Silk Road Exploring Tour
(Urumqi / Turpan / Kashgar)
4 Days Silk Road Short Break
( Jiayuguan / Dunhuang)
5 Days Luoyang Xian Tour by Train
(Luoyang / Dengfeng / Luoyang / Xian)
9 Days Ancient Silk Road Treasure Tour
(Tianshui - Lanzhou - Zhangye - Jiayuguan - Dunhuang)
9 Days In-Depth Northwestern China Tour
(Dunhuang - Jiayuguan - Zhangye - Xining)
12 Days Silk Road Tour from Beijing
(Beijing / Xian / Dunhuang / Turpan / Urumqi)

Start planning your tailor-made holiday to China by contacting one of our specialists. Once enquired, you’ll get a response within 0.5~23.5 hours.

Customize a Trip

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