Picking up in the Chinese capital, you’ll visit the Uyghur province of Xinjiang, learning about the food, culture and history of this minority group. Then, we’ll leave China behind and venture into Kyrgyzstan and Uzbekistan to retrace part of the route that helped build empires: The Silk Road. From stunning snow-capped mountains to arid deserts, experience a side of Asia in a way that you’ll barely believe is real.



Day 1 Beijing
Arrive at any time.

Days 2-3 Beijing
Visit the Great Wall of China. Opt to take in a kung fu show or Chinese acrobats show. Day 3 take a guided tour to Tiananmen Square and the Forbidden City. Free afternoon for sightseeing before an overnight train to Xi'an.

Days 4-5 Xi'an
Orientation walk. Opt to cycle around the city walls, visit the Muslim Quarter or the Big Goose Pagoda. On Day 5, take a guided tour to see the Terracotta Warriors with an included lunch at a local farmer's house. Overnight train to Dunhuang.

Days 6-8 Dunhuang
Guided visit to the famous Mogao Grottoes. Free afternoon to wander the town centre or visit sights further afield. On Day 7, opt to visit the unique Mingsha Sand Dunes for sunrise, where you can climb the massive dunes and enjoy a camel ride. Enjoy a free day on Day 8 before the train to Turpan.

Day 9 Turpan
City tour with a local guide. Learn about the city and the ancient Karez water system. Other sights in Turpan include the Emin minaret, the city mosque and the Turpan museum; outside the city centre offers Jiaohe ruins, Tuyoq, a traditional village, and the Flaming Mountains.

Days 10-11 Kashgar
Drive to Urumqi. Fly to Kashgar. On Day 11, visit the Sunday bazaar and animal bazaar.

Day 12 Torugart Pass/Tash Rabat
Drive to the border via the Torugart Pass. Continue to Tash Rabat, a small community of Kyrgyz nomads high in the Tian Shan mountain range. Overnight in a yurt.

Days 13 Kochkor
Enjoy the scenic mountains in the morning then drive to Kochkor to visit women at a carpet-making workshop. Homestay in the community-based tourism (CBT) houses.

Day 14 Karakol
Visit the Prejevalskiy Museum. Free time to visit the Dunhan Mosque, the local market and an Orthodox church.

Day 15 Cholpon Ata (Lake Issyk-Kul)
Stay in Cholpon Ata for the night. Free afternoon to hang out on the beach, visit the petroglyphs or take a boat tour on the lake.

Days 16-17 Bishkek
Travel to the capital city– Bishkek. Stop en route at the Burana Tower. Free time to shop, visit the city and enjoy the nightlife. On Day 17, opt to go further afield for a hike in Ala Archa National Park (about 40km away).

Days 18-19 Tashkent
Fly to Tashkent, Uzbekistan. Orientation walk on arrival. On Day 19, take an included sightseeing tour of the city with a local guide. Free time to explore.

Day 20 Khiva
Fly to Urgench and drive to Khiva. Enjoy a half-day tour of this ancient city.

Days 21-22 Bukhara
Travel day through the desert to Bukhara, one of the most charming cities in the country. On Day 22 take an included city tour with a local guide. Use some free time to visit a local hammam (bathhouse) or pick up some souvenirs.

Days 23-24 Samarkand
Orientation walk. Opt to visit the Amir Timur Mausoleum. On Day 24, enjoy a guided tour of the city with a local guide. In the evening, enjoy a plov-cooking demonstration and dinner with a local family.

Day 25 Tashkent
Travel back to Tashkent for a final evening together.

Day 26 Tashkent
Depart at any time.


Trip Specifics

  • Price: From £2699 (available to book in other currencies)
  • Duration: 26 days
  • Code: ACKU