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6 Days Zhangye Jiayuguan Dunhuang Discovery Tour

Trace the Classic Hexi Corridor

The Hexi Corridor (the corridor at the west of the Yellow River) is the essence of ancient China Silk Road, a glorious path full of stories and natural wonders. Around 1,600 years ago, the Buddhism was brought to China through the Hexi Corridor and expanded there. The armies of ancient China fought against the invasions from nomadic kingdoms in sumless battles at the Hexi Corridor. Merchants from Europe and Middle Asia entered the Hexi Corridor and got to Chang'an (Xian of today) for business. The most magnificent landscape of Wild China is hidden here too.

This 6 Days Zhangye Jiayuguan Dunhuang Discovery Tour takes you to explore this glorious wonder land - Hexi Corridor, from Lanzhou to artistic capital Dunhuang, via incredible “rainbow mountains” in Zhangye and historical Jiayuguan. It is the most classic trip of the region with diverse experiences, enjoyable pace and budget price!

You can also start this tour either from Zhangye directly. Lanzhou has more schedules of domestic flights and trains, while Zhangye only has flights from Xian, Chengdu, Lanzhou, and high speed trains from Lanzhou, Xining, Dunhuang, etc., but can save some money for you. Our travel experts will construct you to plan your itinerary accordingly.

  • Type : Private Tour
  • Tour Code : CD-GZJD-06
  • Price : from $892 ($996)
    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.
  • Theme : History / Culture / Hiking
  • Physical Demands :

HIGHLIGHTS OF THIS TOUR

  • Witness the famous “rainbow mountains” in Zhangye - spectacular Danxia Landform landscape which was formed in the pre-Jurassic Age;
  • Step up to the fortress of Jiayuguan Pass which is the western beginning of the Great Wall of China and learn some interesting history facts;
  • Visit two brilliant Buddhist grottoes in Dunhuang, including the most famous Mogao Grottoes and less-touristy Yulin Grottoes;
  • Marvel at extremely rare desert landscape in Dunhuang – sand dunes that echo and crescent lake that never dries.
  • Enjoy worry-free packaged tour service which including private tour guide, transfer, hotels, meals, tickets, etc.;
  • Many featured optional activities available to enrich your experience during your trip.
Itinerary Day by Day (Can Be Customized)
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Day 1 Lanzhou Arrival

Lanzhou airport/train station pick up

Welcome to Lanzhou - the city of Yellow River. Once your arrival at Lanzhou Zhongchuan Airport or Lanzhou Train Station, you will be picked up by your local guide, then be escorted to your hotel in a private vehicle. The rest of today is yours to relax in this northwestern historical city on your own.

Arrival Plan B - You can also escape the transfer at Lanzhou, directly get to Zhangye instead. Currently, Zhangye can be 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.

Free time ideas:

You can go to take a walking along the Yellow River, even cruise on the river. Or hike up to the top of the White Pagoda Mountain to enjoy the fresh air and beautiful scenery. The panoramic view of Lanzhou City from the mountain is marvelous.

  • The Iron Bridge of Yellow River

Day 2 Lanzhou - High Speed Train - Zhangye (B, L)

Today's highlights: Zhangye Danxia Landform Geographical Park

After breakfast, you will take a morning high speed bullet train to Zhangye city from Lanzhou (about 3.5 hrs). Enjoy the beautiful landscape along the road. After arrival at Zhangye West Railway Station, you will be met by local tour guide. Let's get ready for trip!

In the afternoon, drive about an hour to visit the Zhangye Danxia Landform Geographical Park. The Danxia landform is a spectacular petrographic geomorphology landscape which is formed from red-coloured sandstones and conglomerates. The one in Zhangye 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 four 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.

Tips:

1. Pack with sun creams, sunglasses, 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 Views After Rain
  • Zhangye Danxia Landform Photography Zhangye Danxia Landform Photography

Day 3 Zhangye - Jiayuguan (B, L)

Today's highlights: Giant Buddha Temple, Jiayuguan Pass, Overhanging Wall

After breakfast, you will go to visit the 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 with symmetric buildings situating along both 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.

After visit the Buddha Temple, drive about 220km (2.5hrs) to Jiayuguan City and check in your hotel. Then you will go to visit "the First and Greatest Pass under Heaven", also the westernmost starting point of Great Wall of Ming Dynasty - Jiayuguan Pass. Start your exploration with an education visit to the Great Wall Museum to learn some interesting facts about both the Jiayuguan Fort and Great Wall, including history, old photos, relics, etc. Then enter the gate to explore the grandiose Jiayuguan Fort. It is a complex of towers, city walls and other military buildings covering more than 25,000 square meters. The city wall is nearly 11 meters high, and comprises an outer and inner wall. There are two large gates standing at the east and the west of the inner wall. Walkways lead to the top of the wall, allowing horses to climb up the wall.

If time allows and you are interested, you can take an optional visit to the Xuanbi Great Wall (Overhanging Wall) which is about 18km away from the Fort. The walls were built on lofty cliffs with incredibly large gradient looking like an overhanging cantilever. Climbing up to higher gives you excellent views of the surrounding land and mountains.

  • Jiayuguan Fort Jiayuguan Fort
  • Giant Buddha Temple Giant Buddha Temple
  • Great Wall Museum Great Wall Museum

Day 4 Jiayuguan - Dunhuang (B, L)

Today's highlights: Yulin Grottoes, the "sister caves" of Mogao caves

Today you will travel to Dunhuang from Jiayuguan in the early morning. On route, visit Yulin Grottoes which is known as the "sister caves" of Mogao caves. It is a Buddhist cave temple site located about 160 km east of the oasis town of Dunhuang and the Mogao Caves, and was listed as the UNESCO World Heritage sites as part of the Chinese Section of the Silk Road. There are 43 existing caves in the Yulin Caves, with a total of 5,200 square meters of murals and more than 259 colored sculptures. You can visit up to 6 caves in which you can admire magnificent mural paintings which are believed to be even more beautiful than those in Mogao Caves. There are also 3 “special caves” (No. 2, No. 3 and No. 25) with outstanding art value that you can visit with extra charges.

After arriving at Dunhuang city, check in to your hotel.

Nightlife Idea: go out for a walk in the Shazhou Night Market where you can try some local food, relax in a drinking bar, or buy some interesting handcrafts, etc.

  • Yulin Grottoes (No. 3 Cave) Yulin Grottoes (No. 3 Cave)

Day 5 Dunhuang (B, L)

Today's highlights: Mogao Grottoes, Mogao Grottoes Digital Exhibition Center, Echoing Sand Mountains, Crescent Lake

After breakfast, drive about 10km from the Dunhuang city to visit the newly opened Mogao Grottoes Digital Exhibition Center before go to Mogao Grottoes. You will watch two short but well-produced educational documentary movies that introduce the history, arts, and other facts about Mogao Grottoes. After the movies, take the interzonal bus to Mogao Grottoes.

Mogao Grottoes is famed as the "Louvre of the 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 from which you can trace the development of Chinese art over 1600 years from one dynasty to the next because each dynasty built own caves to record its own features. There are about 40 common caves opened to the public. In the tourist area, you will be divided into groups by different tour guides who will accompany you to visit the caves (usually 7~8 caves during April~November and 12 caves during December~March) with great introduction. After that, if you want to visit more other caves, you can do it by yourselves or follow other tour guides. Besides, there are 10 special caves (with extra fees) available for your extensional visiting.

The following attraction is Mingshashan, the Echoing Sand Mountains. It is said, in the sunny days, the sand mountains echo like Orchestra music even if there is no wind. If you slide from the sand mountains, you can hear the echoing sound clearly. Your last thing to do for today is the Crescent Lake. Surrounded by the Echoing Sand Mountains, Crescent Lake is a beautiful oasis with some well decorated traditional Chinese architecture, some trees and flowers and a lake that has never dried up and shapes like a crescent moon.

Useful Tips:

1) It is necessary to make a reservation in advance for at least 7 days for Mogao Grottoes visit during May ~ October when there are usually a lot of visitors; 2) It is not allowed to take photos inside the grottoes; 3) in the summer, travelers can stay up to late night around 21:30 in Mingshashan Scenic Area to enjoy the cool time and beautiful sky of stars. It's usually very hot during 12:00~15:00. You can enter the park later when it is not that hot.

Free Time Nightlife Ideas: Enjoy the fascinating Silk Road Show - Silk Road Flower Rain which is a relaxing feast of unparalleled visual beauty with impressively elaborate dances performed by professional dancers wearing stunning costumes and an incredible set design.(Notice: the Silk Road Show is not available during November to middle April of next year. The tickets of the show sell out quickly. If you want to watch the show, please let your travel consultant or tour guide know in advance.)

  • Crescent Lake has been a famous attraction for more than 1200 years Crescent Lake has been a famous attraction for more than 1200 years
  • Echoing Sand Mountains Echoing Sand Mountains
  • Mogao Grottoes Mogao Grottoes
  • Mogao Grottoes Giant Buddha in No. 96 Cave Mogao Grottoes Giant Buddha in No. 96 Cave

Day 6 Dunhuang Departure (B)

Dunhuang airport/train station drop off

Today is free for you until your tour guide see you off at the airport/train station.

Tips: remember to pack all your belongings carefully, and check out your hotel before 12:00 or extra cost may occur.

    No documents found.

Recommended Add-on Options

The quotation for this trip is from $892 Per Person

1. This price is for one person, based on a group of 2 adults sharing one standard double-bed room in 4-star hotel and traveling with our private tour in low seasons.
2. This price is subject to change according your traveling season, group size, hotel class, change of activities in your itinerary and possible fluctuation of currency exchange rate. If you want a lower price, you can get more people to join you, or use economy class hotels.
3. This price is only valid to March 31, 2022.
4. Reference exchange rate of USD 1= RMB 6.45. The final quote is based on current exchange rate. It may change according to the currency fluctuation, while the RMB quotation will be remained the same.

What's included?

  • Professional licensed English-speaking guide;
  • Admission tickets for all attractions listed in the itinerary;
  • Accommodation as listed in the itinerary (4-star standard);
  • Necessary vehicle transfers as listed in the itinerary;
  • Domestic flights (economy class) and high-speed trains (second class) as listed in the itinerary;
  • Airport (and train station) pick up and drop off;
  • Luggage Transfers: between airports (railway station) and hotels;
  • All meals as listed(“B” for Chinese and Western breakfast buffet in your hotel; “L” for Chinese Lunch in local restaurant; “D” for Chinese dinner in local restaurant.);
  • Accident insurance;
  • Our service charge, including tour planning, handling, operational and communication charges.

What's excluded?

  • China visa;
  • Personal expenses;
  • Accommodation not listed in the itinerary;
  • Single Room Supplement;
  • Tourist sites which are not listed in the itinerary;
  • Recommended optional activities;
  • Excess Baggage Charges;
  • Optional tips to guides, drivers, etc.

Check What our Customers Say...

Hey Wonder,

Everything was very good, yes. Thank you for that. I am also happy to provide recommendation on TripAdvisor.

Eleni

Eleni - 2021.09.6‚ USA, September 6, 2021

Hey Wonder,

Sorry for the late reply but the trip was awesome for us! I think we both had a good time. The only thing I wish that maybe was different was the grasslands, we thought we’d see more sparse land rather than an organized villa kind of thing. Otherwise the rest of the trip was great, our driver was awesome and timely and Herry was also super sweet and got everything organized perfectly for us! We really got to know him. Thanks!

A friend of mine wants to book Inner Mongolia, so I’d like to share your contact. Can you add me back?

Aleia

Aleia - 2021.08.20‚ Canada, August 20, 2021

Hello Vivien,

Thank you for helping to arrange our trip. We had a great time!

Can you please send through the fapiao?

Kind Regards,

Jonathan

Jonathan - 2021.08.17‚ Australia, August 17, 2021

Hey Zeva,

My trip to Napa Lake today very nice, driver very nice.

Sam

Sam - 2021.08.6‚ USA, August 6, 2021

Hey Zeva,

Everything is fine, we had a good time and saw a lot of new areas.

Claire

Claire - 2021.08.6‚ USA, August 6, 2021
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The hotels we choose are based on star rating, great locations, well-equipped facilities, cozy bed, high quality service and guests’ feedbacks. Choices are a lot ranging from luxury 5 star, comfortable 4 star to budget 3 star. You could decide where to stay to best suit for your budget and likes. Generally, the hotels have both Western and Chinese breakfast with a wide choices.

If you have already got an ideal hotel, please feel free to tell our travel consultants and they'll book the hotel for you.

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We can satisfy all the dietary requirements no matter you want Chinese local food, western food, vegetarian food or muslin food.

The restaurants we will take you for lunch or dinner are all designated tourist restaurants approved by local tourist administration bureau. They have very good sanitary conditions and the food is prepared fresh and clean.

There will be some meals excluded in your itinerary as you like, and your private guide will be delighted to give you some suggestions and take you to the local restaurants to taste like Beijing Roast Duck, Xian Dumpling Dinner, Sichuan Hotpot, etc., if you are interested in local food tasting.

All the dining options will satisfy your stomach!

Photo gallery of this trip

  • The Iron Bridge of Yellow River The Iron Bridge of Yellow River
  • Zhangye Danxia Landform Views After Rain Zhangye Danxia Landform Views After Rain
  • Zhangye Danxia Landform Photography Zhangye Danxia Landform Photography
  • Jiayuguan Fort Jiayuguan Fort
  • Giant Buddha Temple Giant Buddha Temple
  • Great Wall Museum Great Wall Museum
  • Yulin Grottoes (No. 3 Cave) Yulin Grottoes (No. 3 Cave)
  • Crescent Lake has been a famous attraction for more than 1200 years Crescent Lake has been a famous attraction for more than 1200 years
  • Echoing Sand Mountains Echoing Sand Mountains
  • Mogao Grottoes Mogao Grottoes
  • Mogao Grottoes Giant Buddha in No. 96 Cave Mogao Grottoes Giant Buddha in No. 96 Cave
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