Bangkok to Xi'an Itinerary

Travel through the highlights of Asia on this epic journey from Bangkok to Xi'an. Visit Thailand, Cambodia, Laos and China and see some of the best this region has to offer.

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Local children, Cambodia

Panda, Chengdu

Terracotta Warriors, Xian

Angkor Wat

Rice fields, Phnom Penh

Local children, Thailand

Rice farmer, Thailand

Artist, Xian

Thai food

Day 1 Bangkok

Jump straight into the action in flamboyant Bangkok.
ACCOM: Hotel - 1

Day 2 Aranyaprathet

Travel to the entertaining border city of Aranyaprathet.
ACCOM: Hotel - 1

Days 3-4 Battambang

Battambang is a real rural gem full of well-preserved villas and shop houses clustered around a lazy riverbank. Enjoy the slow pace of life here, and check out a nearby floating village before venturing onward to the capital.
ACCOM: Hotel - 2

Days 5-6 Phnom Penh

Reflect on Cambodia's years of war at the Tuol Sleng Museum and head out to the notorious Killing Fields.
ACCOM: Guesthouse - 2

Days 7-9 Siem Reap/Angkor Wat

Travel from Phnom Penh to Siem Reap where a visit to the city’s old market is a must. Wander through the stalls and surrounding shops and haggle for bargains in the form of silks, sarongs, silver and statues. Marvel at the magnificent temples of Angkor Wat and Angkor Thom, one of the most visited sights in South-East Asia. Be blown away by the sheer magnitude of these grand ruins, outlined against a bright orange sunset.
ACCOM: Hotel - 3

Day 10 Aranyaprathet

Head back across the border into Thailand.
ACCOM: Hotel - 1

Day 11 Phi Mai

Get a glimpse of the Thailand of old, a country where rice fields run on as far as the eye can see and discover that Thailand's classic hospitality and enthralling culture is very much alive and well here. Explore Phi Mai, one of the country's best surviving Khmer temples.
ACCOM: Bush camp (no facilities) - 1

Days 12-13 Vientiane

Farewell Thailand and travel into Laos. Come face-to-face with the fusion of Asia and Europe in Vientiane, a relaxed city with friendly inhabitants and plenty to see and do.
ACCOM: Hotel - 2

Days 14-15 Vang Vieng

Chill out in Vang Vieng, enjoying the dramatic limestone surrounds. Mountain biking and cave exploring are two popular optional activities here; however, tubing in Vang Vieng has become somewhat of a pilgrimage for backpackers - and it's certainly a fun way to spend an afternoon.
ACCOM: Guesthouse - 2

Days 16-18 Luang Prabang

Head north and absorb the air of quiet romance in Luang Prabang. This delightful city has plenty of well-preserved wats (temples) that are worth visiting, and climbing to the top of Phu Si at sunset is also well worth the effort.
ACCOM: Guesthouse - 3

Days 19-20 Luang Nam Tha

Make tracks to Luang Nam Tha on the banks of Nam Tha River. While here, why not enjoy some optional outdoor pursuits including kayaking, rafting and trekking.
ACCOM: Guesthouse - 2

Days 21-23 Xishuangbanna

Make the jump into China and travel through remote villages and vast, dramatic landscapes. Spend a few nights bushcamping amid this rarely visited part of Asia.
ACCOM: Bush camp (no facilities) - 2, Guesthouse - 1

Day 24 Shilinzhen

Pay a visit to Shilin, known as China's 'Stone Forest', and discover an intriguing maze of towering limestone pillars.
ACCOM: Bush camp (no facilities) - 1

Day 25 Kunming

Back in civilisation, explore the markets of Kunming and perhaps swing by the ancient Yuantong temple.
ACCOM: Hotel - 1

Days 26-27 Dali

Head to the lakeside town of Dali and choose to explore this fascinating region by bike, boat or cable car.
ACCOM: Hotel - 2

Days 28-30 Lijiang

Wander through the cobbled streets of picturesque Lijiang and learn about the Naxi people, who are descendants of Tibetan nomads. If feeling energetic, take an overnight trek to the spectacular Tiger Leaping Gorge.
ACCOM: Hotel - 3

Day 31 Overnight Train

Mingle with friendly locals on an overnight sleeper train to Emei Shan.
ACCOM: Overnight sleeper train - 1

Days 32-33 Emei Shan

Make the pilgrimage to Emei Shan and perhaps take the opportunity to hike up China’s holiest of mountains.
ACCOM: Guesthouse - 2

Days 34-35 Leshan/Chengdu

Stop to gaze up at the 71 m Buddha ‘Da Fo’ en route to Chengdu. Home to spicy hot pot cuisine, this bustling Sichuan city has plenty of food and culture on offer. While here, get up close and personal to giant pandas at the research base and breeding centre.
ACCOM: Hotel - 2

Day 36 Dazu

Travel onwards to Dazu. Admire the sleeping Buddha in the Bei Shan caves.
ACCOM: Hotel - 1

Day 37 Chongqing

Head east from Dazu to Chongqing.
ACCOM: Hotel - 1

Days 38-39 Yangtze River Cruise

Get an insight into rural life along the Yangtze River. Be lulled to sleep at night by the gentle rocking of the boat.
ACCOM: Overnight boat - 2

Days 40-41 Yichang

With feet back on solid ground, set off to explore the picturesque town of Yichang. In free time, why not treat the feet to a traditional reflexology massage.
ACCOM: Guesthouse - 1, Hotel - 1

Days 42-43 Xiang Fan/Wudang Shan

Explore the mountain reserve of Wudang Shan, the backdrop to the epic film Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon.
ACCOM: Hotel - 2

Days 44-46 Xi'an

Arrive in Xi'an and visit the ancient Terracotta Warriors. End the adventure by soaking up the city's garden culture and many temples.
ACCOM: Hotel - 2