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Night scene of the ancient Xian city wall

Historic Xi'an

Example 4 Day Tour
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Explore the historic Xi'an city, one of the oldest cities and a capital for 13 dynasties in China's history. The start of the historic Silk Road, this city is believed to have been one of the four largest cities in the entire world from the 7th to 10th centuries. Add 3 days to any China tour to explore Xi'an's architecture, artifacts, and archeological marvels such as the Terracotta Warriors. Try your hand at calligraphy and bike along the ancient wall as you get to know the story of this city's ancient past.

Day-by-Day Summary

Day 1 : Explore Xi'an City
Day 2 : Terracotta Warriors & Huaging Hot Springs
Day 3 : Shaanxi Museum & Giant Wild Goose Pagoda

Places Visited

  • Asia
  • China
  • Shaanxi Museum
  • Shaanxi Province
  • Terracotta Warriors
  • Xi'an

Activities

Trip Type

  • Independent

Activity Level

Relaxed

Trip Snapshots

Night scene of the ancient Xian city wall Take a Chinese calligraphy lesson Terracotta Warriors of Xi'an Popular Xian soup dumplings Street scene of ancient city, Xian Giant Wild Goose Pagoda in Xian Fountains at night in Xian Ancient city wall in Xian

Day 1 Explore Xi'an City

Arrive to Xi'an today via internal flight or bullet train. Meet with your guide and set out for your first day of exploring. Xi'an was once the capital city for 13 dynasties in ancient times, including the Western Zhou (11th century to 771 BC) and Tang Dynasties (AD 618-907). Xi'an was also the starting city of the Silk Road and is believed to have been one of the four largest cities in the world from the 7th to 10th century.

Explore first the downtown area, including the Bell Tower. Originally built in 1384, it sits in the center of Xi'an ancient city and is one of the best preserved of its age. Bike for a while along the the Xi'an ancient city wall originally built during the Tang Dynasty. Stop for impressive views of the old city contained within its walls on one side and the modern city that lies without to the other side.

Next visit the Forest of Stone Tablets Museum. This museum of carvings and calligraphy engraved in stone holds the largest collection of stone steles from the past 1000 years of China's history. At the site of the former Confucian Temple of Xi'an, the oldest collection dates from the Han period (206 BC to AD 220). It is an amazing collection of ancient Chinese calligraphy. Conclude your day by trying your own hand at Chinese calligraphy with ink and paper.

Day 2 Terracotta Warriors & Huaging Hot Springs

After breakfast this morning, drive 1.5 hours to the site of the Terracotta Warriors, which are considered one of the most significant archaeological excavations of the 20th century. First discovered in 1974 by farmers digging a well, the discovery eventually attracted archaeologists which led to the largest pottery figurine find in China's history. China's first emperor, Qin Shi Huang, began the work on the figurines in 246 BC at the age of 13. In the museum, see a short movie on how the warriors were made and how they survived being buried for so long.

Drive twenty minutes to nearby Huaqing Hot Springs at the northern foot of Mt. Lishanin. Huaqing Hot Spring (also called Huaqing Pool) is famed for both its spring scenery and a legendary romantic love story of Emperor Xuanzong in the Tang Dynasty. Learn its long history and enjoy the landscape here.

Return to Xi'an city and if the time permits, visit the Grand Mosque. This large mosque is one of the most important Islamic places of worship in China. After dinner, you might opt to walk around the Muslim Quarter to experience the nightlife in that area.

Day 3 Shaanxi Museum & Giant Wild Goose Pagoda

  • 1 Breakfast
Today you first visit the Shaanxi Museum, one of the largest state museum collections in China. Built in the architectural style of the Tang Dynasty, the museum houses over 300,000 items including coins, metal objects, and other pieces of artwork. See also Giant Wild Goose Pagoda. Built during the Tang Dynasty in honor of a famous Buddhist monk, the pagoda is about 1,300 years old and offers an amazing view of Xi'an. Explore the surrounding courtyards, including the North Square which holds the largest musical fountain in China and performs at set times of day.

After lunch, drive to Hanyang Tomb near the airport. This tomb is the best preserved and one of the largest among the Han king tombs. The buildings here are delicately decorated and carved with intricate pictures showing the grandeur of the royal family. Transfer next to the airport for your flight on to your next destination.

Xi'an - Hotels

Per person starting at
$610

Notes

Select a Date
Rates based on current exchange rate CNY/US dollars. Please contact us for exact quote in US dollars.

Included

  • 2 Breakfasts, 1 Dinner
  • 2 Nights Accommodations
    • 2 Nights Hotel
  • 3 Days Private Guide Service

Excluded

  • International Flights
  • China Visa Fee
    • US citizens must obtain visa prior to arrival

Recommended Budgeting

  • $50 Meals not Included
    • Alcohol is not included.
  • $40 Optional Excursions
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When to Go

Jan
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Mar
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May
Jun
Jul
Aug
Sep
Oct
Nov
Dec
Good to ideal period to travel, and many people choose to visit at this time.
Chance for unpredictable weather but with fewer visitors.

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