Ulaanbaatar to Xi'an

Trip Validity

  • 2012-01-01 - 2013-12-31

See Angkor Wat, explore China and visit Thailand on a huge tour of Asia.

  • Cross Mongolia’s Gobi Desert
  • Discover remote sections of the Great Wall of China

Ulaanbaatar to Xi'an Summary

Add to Shortlist

Days 1-2 Ulaanbaatar

Arrive in Mongolia’s bubbling capital, a great place to begin your overland adventure. Visit Ulaanbaatar’s many museums and learn about the most famous Mongolian - Genghis Khan.

Day 3 Baga Gazryn Chuluu

Head into the Gobi Desert, Mongolia’s heartland and of the largest deserts in the world. Camp beneath the Baga Gazryn Chuluu rock formations.

Day 4 South Gobi

Continue south through the Gobi Desert, admiring the rocky expanses and camping under the stars.

Day 5 Yolin Am (Vulture Canyon)

Visit Yolyn Am in the Great Gobi National Park. Take a nature walk to the glacier valley and try to spot some local wildlife before spending the night in a ger camp.

Day 6 Bayan Zag

Bask in the orange glow of Bayan Zag, better known as the 'flaming cliffs'. This area gained international attention when a number of dinosaur eggs and fossils were found within the spectacular rock walls.

Days 7-8 Khongorin Els

Head for the spectacular Khongoryn Els, a breathtaking collection of sand dunes that can reach heights of up to 300 metres.

Day 9 South Gobi

Continue the Overland journey through the heart of the Gobi Desert.

Day 10 Arvaikheer/Bush camp

Arrive in Arvaikheer and visit the ancient ruins of the Ongii Monastery.

Days 11-12 The Orkhon Valley

Spend time in stunning Orkhon Valley and visit nearby waterfalls. Hike to the 17th-century Tuvkhon Monastery for a spectacular view of this verdant valley.

Days 13-14 Tsenkher Hot Springs

Cross the Khangai Nuruu mountains and be greeted by lush grasses and open valleys. Visit a nomadic family or bathe in the sensual hot springs.

Day 15 Karakorum

Visit Karakorum, Mongolia’s ancient capital. Wander the ruins of the old city and drop in on Mongolia’s first Buddhist monastery.

Day 16 Ugii Lake

Spot birdlife over the waters of Ugii Lake.

Day 17 Khustain National Park

Search for wild horses in the Khustain National Park and spend the night in a ger camp.

Days 18-19 Terelj National Park

Enjoy an action-packed stay in this alpine park. Take a scenic hike or get the blood pumping with a rafting trip.

Days 20-21 Ulaanbaatar

Visit the Chinggis Khan Monument en route to colourful Ulaanbaatar. Spend a free day exploring the sights, temples, monasteries and museums, or sit back in a restaurant and let the electrifying atmosphere of Mongolia's capital capture you.

Days 22-23 Choir/Sainshand

Say goodbye to Ulaanbaatar and make the long journey across Mongolia's diverse plains towards China. Spend nights camping under a blanket of stars.

Day 24 Erlian

Cross the border from Mongolia to China at Erlian.

Days 25-26 Beijing

Join the buzzing hive that is Beijing - a place where discovery and intrigue lie around every corner. Visit the Forbidden City to admire imperial architecture or the sprawling Summer Palace on the banks of Kunming Lake.

Days 27-28 Chengde

Stroll through the lush Shanzhuang gardens in the footsteps of past Emperors who holidayed here. Take in the rich heritage of Chengde by bicycle or admire the Mongolian and Tibetan influences in local temples and monasteries.

Day 29 Jinshanling

Take a walk along the monumental Great Wall as it snakes its way through rolling hills as far as the eye can see. Imagine the exhaustive effort of farmers and labourers who toiled for many generations to construct the Wall.

Days 30-31 Datong

Marvel at the Hanging Monastery, delicately perched on a steep cliff face in Golden Dragon Gorge, and explore the World Heritage listed Yungang Grottoes, home to a staggering collection of over 50,000 statues and fascinating ancient rock art.

Days 32-33 Wutai Shan

A famous pilgrimage site, Wutai Shan is believed to be the earthly abode of the Bodhisattva of Wisdom, Manjushri. Visit sacred temples, go hiking or simply soak up the serene atmosphere in a local cafe.

Days 34-35 Pingyao

Stroll the ancient, and well preserved streets on Pingyao. This Han Chinese walled city is designed in the traditional bagua (octagonal) layout with architecture dating back centuries.

Day 36 Lijiashan

Visit the incredible cave houses of Lijiashan - built over 500 years ago - and spend the night in a cave room.

Days 37-38 Yan'an

Get an insight into China's communist beginnings with a visit to Yan'an, once the Chinese Communist Party's headquarters during the 1930s and 40s

Days 39-41 Xi'an

Admire the 2,000-year-old army of Terracotta Warriors and explore significant cultural sites and museums both in and around Xi'an. Enjoy a plate of hand-pulled noodles as you watch the locals dance, eat and practice martial arts in South Park.