This early morning after breakfast, meet our tour guide and driver in your hotel, then drive about 325km (about 4.5) hours to Yucha Grand Canyon which is praised as the “natural crack wonder of the Loess Plateau”.
You will arrive at Yucha Grand Canyon after noon time. The rest about 3~4 hours after lunch is to admire the geographical wonders in the canyon. Yucha Grand Canyon is the China version of Antelope Canyon in the United States. It has four smaller canyons, including Longbagou Canyon, Huabaogou Canyon, Nanhegou Canyon (also known as Mudangou) and Huashugou Canyon. Each canyon has its own characteristics. What you can find here is a wonderful world carved by wind, water and time for millions of years. The walls of the gorge are uneven, beautiful and smooth. Everything looks so simple, harmonious and natural. How was the Grand Canyon formed? According to scientific research, about ten million years ago, there was a strong earthquake occurred on the Loess Plateau. After the earthquake, a gigantic crack appeared. The surface of the crack then got eroded by water, wind and sunlight, and formed various textures and shapes. Walking in the canyon is feeling like the waves of the sea passing by you. Occasionally, some sunlight falls into the canyon, forming a dreamy world of light and shadow.
Visiting tips: 1. In the wide canyons, several people can walk side by side, while in the narrow canyons, you can only pass by one person. To walk safely through the narrow and dark spaces, you can carry a tripod and ultra-wide-angle lens. 2) Please note it is not safe to visit the canyon during rainy days because there may be rapid water flow. The rainy season in the northwest is June, July, and August, so pay attention to the weather forecast before you go.
Leaving the Grand Canyon, you will keep drive about 70 km (about 1.5 hours) to Yan’an city for accommodation.
Nightlife suggestions: 1. hunt for local snacks at Erdaojie Night Market; 2) enjoy night view of the city from Baotashan (Baota Mountain).
Today, you are going to explore another natural wonder in the region – the Wavy Valley (officially Longzhou Danxia Landform Scenic Area) in Longzhou Town, Jingbian County, about 150 km (2 hours’ drive) from Yan’an city. The Danxia landform here, which can compete with the Arizona’s the Wave, was formed between the Paleozoic Permian, Mesozoic Triassic, Jurassic, and Cretaceous when the earth activity was the most active, and creatures were the most prosperous in the history of our planet. Due to constant erosion of wind and rain, the red sandstones here present strange postures and colors, and look different at different angles and times. When it is sunny after the rain, the color of red sandstone will be more vivid.
You will first visit the Flaming Danxia and Geocentric Danxia Scenic Area. Against the backdrop of the Loess Plateau, the Danxia landscape here is more beautiful. Looking from afar, the Danxia hills and canyons are like a rushing red sea, and viewing closely, they are like the “rings of time”. This spectacular Danxia landform stretches for several kilometers! When you walk through the Danxia mountains, the red cliffs appears to be cut by an axe, sitting in a canyon which is about 50 meters wide and deep. Later, we will come to Water Danxia Scenic Area. The Danxia landform here is colorful and amazing, with the clear water as natural background.
Lastly, drive the same way back to Yan’an city for accommodation.
Today，you will go to discover a spectacle on the Yellow River - Yellow River Shequ National Park. It is only about 150km (2.5 hours’ drive) from Yan’an City. The mighty Yellow River flows through the winding canyons on the plateau junction between Shanxi Province and Shaanxi Province like a giant yellow snake (hence the name – Shequ (Winding Snake).
There are so many things to do in the Shequ National Park that you can stay up to a half day there. The most impressive sight is the Qiankunwan (Taichi Bay) which was selected as one of the “10 Most Beautiful Canyons in China”. The Yellow River here is stopped by an “S” band with a radian over 320° which looks naturally like a Chinese Taichi. Walking on the plank road along the Yellow River is another featured experience. You can get closer to feel the majesty of this China’s “Mother River” and feast on the magnificent Losses Plateau landscape. You will also make a stop at Qingshuiwan (Pure Water Bay) which is a small tributary of Yellow River, and used to serve as an ancient port. Taking a cable car from Qingshuiwan, you will get to Huifengzhai (Peaks-gathering Village), the last attraction in the park. Sitting on the higher cliffs, Huifengzhai was an important military defensive base. For tourists, it offers open view of Yellow River and nearby mountains, gorges and plantations.
After the Geopark exploration, drive to nearby Yichuan county for accommodation.
Today after breakfast, you will drive about 160km (about 3.5 hours) to Hukou Waterfall, one of the most beautiful waterfalls in China.
You will get to Hukou Waterfall around noon time. Take your time to explore this largest yellowish waterfall in the world and the second largest waterfall in China. When Yellow River cleaves Shanxi province and Shaanxi province at the point where riverbed abruptly narrows down, the thunderous water splashes on the rock form spectacular Hukou Waterfall naturally. Hukou Waterfall gets its name of Hukou (meaning kettle spout literally) because the it seems pouring down from a huge kettle. As the water stirs up a mass of smoke and clouds, the scene of Hukou Waterfall is extremely overwhelming. In the sunny days, the mist is refracted by sunlight to create a rainbow like a beautiful bridge spanning river. You will have enough time enjoy the magnificent waterfall and take nice photos.
Notes: 1. May to October is the best time to see the powerful waterfall but you can see calm glacier fall in cold winter; 2. you can pay an optional visit to the Dragon Cave (CNY 20) beneath Hukou Waterfall to get a different view.
After the waterfall tour, drive about 300km (about 4 hours) back to Xian.
The quotation for this trip is from Request P/P
1. This price is for one person, based on a group of 2 adults sharing one standard double-bed room in 4-star hotel and traveling with our private tour in low seasons.
2. This price is subject to change according your traveling season, group size, hotel class, change of activities in your itinerary and possible fluctuation of currency exchange rate. If you want a lower price, you can get more people to join you, or use economy class hotels.
Professional licensed English-speaking guide;
Admission tickets for all attractions listed in the itinerary;
Accommodation as listed in the itinerary (4-star standard);
Necessary vehicle transfers as listed in the itinerary;
Domestic flights (economy class) and high-speed trains (second class) as listed in the itinerary;
Airport (and train station) pick up and drop off;
Luggage Transfers: between airports (railway station) and hotels;
All meals as listed( “B” for Chinese and Western breakfast buffet in your hotel; “L” for Chinese Lunch in local restaurant; “D” for Chinese dinner in local restaurant.);
Our service charge, including tour planning, handling, operational and communication charges.
Accommodation not listed in the itinerary;
Single Room Supplement;
Tourist sites which are not listed in the itinerary;
Recommended optional activities;
Flights or trains not listed in the itinerary;
Excess Baggage Charges;
Optional tips to guides, drivers, etc.
Xian Travel Notes
Our private Xian tour packages let you decide where to go, when to go, where to stay and touring paces on your own. The itinerary, hotels, food, cultural programs are customized to match your requirements. Before the tour, our knowledgeable Xian experts will give reliable suggestions and propose ideal tour package for you. During the tour, our private tour guide will help you learn deep about the history and culture of Xian, and make sure everything work well throughout the tour at the same time.
1. What are the features of China Discovery’s private Xian tour packages?
Xian applies to the 72-Hour Transit Visa Exemption. Visitor from 53 foreign countries who hold valid travel document & connecting flights to a third country/region can enter Xian from Xian Xianyang Airport, and stay in Xian up to 72 hours without a Chinese Visa. But since Xi’an has not many international flights, and the city is usually a middle stop of a China tour, we advise you to apply for a China Tourist Visa (L Visa) before coming to China so that you can travel in a more secure and flexible way. China Discovery can provide you the invitation letter so that you can obtain the visa with bigger chance while least time.
2. Do you need a visa for Xian?
Xi'an has a warm temperate semi-humid continental monsoon climate with distinct four seasons – warm spring, hot and rainy summer, cool and comfortable autumn, cold and dry winter. The average annual temperature of Xi'an is around 13°C / 55°F. Generally speaking, you can visit Xian all year around, as most of the attractions are located in and near city area. But the best two periods of time to visit is March to June and mid-September to early November. During this period, the weather there is neither too hot nor too cold, and the number of tourists is relatively smaller than the summer time’s.
What to wear in summer? - light, quick-dry and easy to wear clothes, hat, sunscreen, rain jacket and comfortable shoes. What to wear in winter? - double layer jacket, long underwear pants and tops, sweaters, long sleeve shirts, wool blend socks, boots, winter jacket, winter hat, winter gloves, winter scarf. What to wear in spring? - long underwear, fleece outer layer, face mask, light hat, scarf, and gloves. What to wear in autumn? - thermal warmer jacket, light hat, gloves, scarf, wool socks, fleece pants.
3. Xian Weather, best time to visit and wearing ideas
Xian is only about 2~3 hours flying from majority of big cities in China, such as Beijing, Xian, Chengdu, Guangzhou, Shanghai, etc. You can also take international flights to Xian from more than 50 countries and regions, such as Hong Kong, Macau, Taipei, Los Angeles, London, Paris, Sydney, Kuala, Bangkok, etc. Xian is connected by high-speed rails widely. You can get from Beijing, Chengdu, Chongqing, Luoyang, Zhengzhou, Pingyao, etc. to Xian by bullet trains within 6 hours. Recommended gateways to Xian include: Beijing, Shanghai, Chongqing, Chengdu, Hangzhou, Hong Kong.
4. How to Get to Xian
Bell & Drum Towers Area - strongly recommended for first-timers, easy access to Ancient City Wall, Muslim Quarter, Bell Tower, Drum Tower and popular restaurants. Hotel rates are higher than other areas, but you have a lot of choices of different standards. Xincheng District - not very far from the city center as well as Xian’s main attractions, recommended for families as there are shopping center and parks to enjoy a stroll. Yanta Distict – Yanta District is on the south of the city center, also near main attractions, including Giant Wild Goose Pagoda, History Museum, etc. It has many hotels of budget class.
China Discovery only uses those hotels with convenient amenities, fine services and great reputations. Most of them are 5-star and 4-star hotels located near the Muslim Quarter (food street), Bell Tower, Ancient City Wall, where you can also get easy accesses to subway, shopping malls, banks, etc.
5. Where to Stay in Xian
The city area of Xian can be explored in brief two days, while the surrounding regions also have a lot of places to explore, such as Mount Hua, Longmen Grottoes in Luoyang, Shaolin Temple in Dengfeng. If time allows, you can extend your trip from Xian to above places. Each place only needs about 1 day to visit.
6. Extend Xian trip to Mount Huashan, Luoyang and Shaolin Temple is strongly recommended
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