Istanbul to Xian Overview

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‡ As our kitty is flexible the indicated amount is indicative only - please click here to view the kitty amount for your departure date.

Explore the vast lands of Turkey, Iran, Turkmenistan, Uzbekistan, Kyrgyzstan and China.

Get ready for a massive Overland adventure from the bustling streets of Istanbul to the metropolitan core of Beijing. Travel through some of the planet's most remote, wild and unique wildernesses along the legendary Silk Road into China. Pass through the mountainscapes of Iran, pitch a tent beneath the stars in the Karakum Desert and arrive at secluded sections of the snaking Great Wall. From Turkey to Turkmenistan and beyond, this unique tour will introduce you to the friendly and hospitable locals who call these rugged lands home. If you're longing for an epic Overland odyssey, away from the tourist crowds and through some of the world's last wild terrains, then this momentous journey is just for you.

  • Admire the turquoise tiles in Khiva's Old City
  • Be amazed by the size of Istanbul's Grand Bazaar
  • Explore the ancient ruins of Persepolis
  • Hike through the Kyrgyzstan mountains
  • Marvel at the fairy chimneys of Cappadocia
  • Marvel at the fairy chimneys of Cappadocia
  • Stay with a Tajik family in a yurt
  • Visit the imposing Terracotta Warriors

What's included in this trip

  • Start:

    Istanbul, Turkey
  • Finish:

    Xi'an, China
  • Group size:

    Min 4 , Max 21
  • Ages:

    Min 18
  • Meals:

    All meals when camping
  • Accommodation:

    Bush camp (no facilities) (15 nts), Camping (with facilities) (7 nts), Guesthouse (4 nts), Homestay (2 nts), Hostel (2 nts), Hotel (40 nts), Yurt (5 nts)
  • Transport:

    Overland vehicle
  • Included activities:

    Ali Qapu Palace, Animal market, Ashgabat - Sunday Market, Bukhara - Guided walking tour, Entrance Jiayuguan fort, Esfahan walking tour, Goreme - Guided Goreme Valley tour, Guided tour of ancient ruins of Persepolis, Guided walking tour, Iman Mosque entrance and guided tour, Ishak Pasha Palace, Jameh Mosque, Jeti-Oghuz - Hiking, Khiva - Guided city tour, Kochkor - Regional Museum, Kochkor - Women's Felt Co-op, Konye-Urgench - Ancient City ruins, Samarkand - Guided city tour, Tehran walking tour, Visit to Lake Tuz, Xi'an - Terracotta Warriors guided tour

  • Notes:

    1. Please note that this trip requires minimum numbers to depart, and may be cancelled up until 56 days prior to departure. The places showing on the dates and availability page are an indication only so please contact Intrepid to check if your preferred date will depart before making any final arrangements, such as booking non-changeable flights. 2. Due to a British government travel warning, from September 2012 this itinerary will no longer be able to visit Iran. It will instead travel from Turkey to Georgia and then through Azerbaijan to Turkmenistan. Passengers already booked to travel in 2012 have been notified. The new itinerary for 2013 will be published by November.

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About China , Kazakhstan , Kyrgyzstan , Turkey , Turkmenistan , Uzbekistan , Iran

Istanbul to Xian Summary

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Days 50-51 Song-Kol Lake

Spend the night in a yurt near Song-Kol Lake and join in a game of ulak-tartysh.

Day 52 Bush Camp

Make tracks back to Bishkek, stopping to camp in the wilderness overnight.

Days 53-54 Bishkek

Take time out in Bishek. Why not stroll through the city's markets and haggle for bargains. Alternatively, relaxing in an Oak Park cafe and reflecting on the adventure is another good option!

Day 55 Kochkor

Make Kyrgyz friends on an authentic homestay experience in Kochkor.

Day 56 Bush Camp

Take a good book as today's lengthy border crossing meanders through the Torugart pass and into Kyrgyzstan, past rugged mountains and wild terrain.

Day 57 Kashgar

The striking atmosphere of Kashgar provides a refreshing contrast to the past two days' travel. Soak up the exotic sights, sounds and smells of this unique destination.

Day 58 Karakol

Set off early to get to stunning Lake Karakol. Spend the day wallowing in the surrounds of this magnificent setting before spending the night in traditional yurts.

Days 59-61 Kashgar

Travel to the westernmost end of China and visit Kashgar, an exotic fusion of Chinese, Uzbek and Kyrgyz. Wander the streets that weave through the old town and discover the markets and bazaars of this diverse city.

Days 62-63 Bush Camp

Leave Kashgar and head to the outskirts of the enormous Taklamakan Desert. Travelling into seemingly unchartered terrain, spend two days on an overland adventure.

Days 64-65 Heavenly Lake

Travel towards the Tian Shan mountain range, and arrive at the pristine Heavenly Lake. Located at the top of a mountain - and in the middle of a desert - this is a remote spot, perfect for relaxation.

Days 66-67 Turpan

Escape the desert sands in the laidback town of Turpan. Explore the famous Jiahe ruins, visit the night market or perhaps soak up the lively energy among locals in the town square.

Day 68 Bush Camp

Continue the Overland adventure towards the ancient Silk Road town of Dunhuang. Spend the night wild camping beneath the desert stars.

Days 69-70 Dunhuang

Arrive in Dunhuang and relax in this Gansu oasis trading town. Visit the nearby Mogao Caves and discover their breathtaking Buddhist art.

Days 71-72 Bush Camp/Great Wall

Drive to Jiayuguan and discover deserted sections of the Great Wall.

Days 73-74 Liujiaxia

At the crossroads of Qinghai and Gangsu, arrive at Liujiaxia. Visit the Bingling Si Buddhist grottoes to see intricate cliff-side carvings.

Days 75-76 Xiahe

Travel to the Tibetan monastery town of Xiahe, often described as one of the most enchanting places to visit in China.

Day 77 Lanzhou

Make tracks to Lanzhou and relax beside the rushing waters of the Yellow River.

Day 78 Pingliang

Overland to lovely Pingliang, located at the base of the verdant Kongtong Mountain. If feeling energetic, climb through five lush terraces to the scared site of Mount Kongtong, passing temples and shrines along the way.

Days 79-80 Xi'an

Admire the 2,000-year-old army of Terracotta Warriors at the end of this journey from Kashgar to Xi'an.
    • 80
    • KDODC
    • Kitty tool tip
      USD $2,410
    • Contact us Discontinued trips tool tip
    •  
       
       
       
       
    •  
       
       
       
       
    • Overland
    • Basix
Contact us
‡ As our kitty is flexible the indicated amount is indicative only - please click here to view the kitty amount for your departure date.