9 Days Lop Nur Desert and Loulan Kingdom Adventure from Urumqi to Dunhuang

The world-famous ancient city of Loulan, situated in the west of the Lop Nor, was the hub of communications in the Western Regions and occupied a very important position on the ancient Silk Road. The Loulan Kingdom was founded in 176 B.C. and vanished in 630, existing for over 800 years. A great number of historical remains have been found along the banks of the Lake until toady. Among them is the well known Loulan ancient city, which is situated on the western bank of Lop Nor. This tour will take you to experience adventure in-depth. Most areas of this tour are desolated areas and there are no regular roads for this tour. The group members have to sleep in tents in a way to feel the silence of the desert and you are going to experience a really challenging trip.


  • Explore the mysterious Loulan Kingdom.
  • Experience a western China adventure.
  • Visit famous scenic spots of Urumqi and Dunhuang.

Brief Itinerary

  • Day 1: Urumqi Arrival
  • Day 2: Turpan
  • Day 3: Turpan – Kumtag Desert
  • Day 4: Kumtag Desert – Lop Nur Lake
  • Day 5: Lop Nur Lake – Loulan
  • Day 6: Loulan – Kumtag Desert
  • Day 7: Kumtag Desert – Dunhuang
  • Day 8: Dunhuang
  • Day 9: Dunhuang Departure

Google Map

Detailed Itinerary

Day 1 Urumqi Arrival

Sightseeing and Activities:
Accommodation: Urumqi

Arrive at Urumqi, meet and transfer to the hotel. Overnight in Urumqi

Day 2 Turpan

Sightseeing and Activities:  Jiaohe ruin city,  Flaming Mountain, Bezikilik thousand buddha caves,  Grape Valley, Karez irrigation system, Gaochang ruin city
Accommodation: Turpan
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

We drive to Turpan, where we visit Jiaohe ruin city, the Flaming Mountain and Bezikilik thousand buddha caves. In the afternoon we visit Grape Valley, Karez irrigation system and Gaochang ruin city. Overnight in Turpan.

Day 3 Turpan – Kumtag Desert

Sightseeing and Activities
Accommodation: No 1 Campsite
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

After breakfast we start the Loulan trip after a meeting to give related information to members, and then we drive to Kumtag Desert via Dikan’er by cross-county car. On the way we will have panoramic desert views. Overnight in No 1 Campsite.

Day 4  Kumtag Desert – Lop Nur Lake

Sightseeing and Activities: Dragon City, Lop Nur Lake
Accommodation: No 2. Campsite
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Start out from Dikan’er to Dragon City. Dragon City is one of three Yardang Groups in Lop Nur Lake and located on the north bank of Lop Nur Lake. All the earth pads arrange in the east-west direction and look like dragons seen from distance, thus it was called Dragon City. We pass the site where Mr.Yu Chunshun died, the famous Chinese adventurer before we arrive at the Lake center. Once a vast lake in ancient times, today Lop Nur has entirely dried up. It is now a lake only in name. Overnight in No 2. Campsite.

Day 5 Lop Nur Lake – Loulan

Sightseeing and Activities: Loulan Ancient City
Accommodation: No.3 Campsite
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

All members take a group photo in the dried center of Lop Nur Lake where the tourists often leave memorials; Then we drive on to enter Loulan Ancient City. This ancient city once served as the capital of Loulan Kingdom and it was a very prosperous city on the Silk Road. The rest of the day is to visit this important ancient city and there is the best-preserved ancient castle. Overnight in No.3 Campsite

Day 6 Loulan – Kumtag Desert

Sightseeing and Activities:  
Accommodation: No.4 Campsite
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

After breakfast we will drive to Kumtag Desert, on the way we need to hike 5 KM, then we get to Sanlong sand dune. The Kumtag Desert covers a total area of 2,500 square kilometers. And the converging winds have brought about clusters of sand hills in the shape of pyramids. We will see the magnificent expanse of the yellow sands, which has been neighbor to the oasis for thousands of years. Overnight in No.4 Campsite

Day 7 Kumtag Desert – Dunhuang

Sightseeing and Activities: Yumen Pass, Great Wall of Han Dynasty, Ancient Beacon Tower, Yardang Natural Landform Geopark
Accommodation: Dunhuang
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

After breakfast we drive to Dunhuang, while passing Yumen Pass, Great Wall of Han Dynasty, Ancient Beacon Tower and Yardang Natural Landform Geopark. Overnight in Dunhuang.

Day 8 Dunhuang

Sightseeing and Activities: Mogao Grottoes, Crescent Lake
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

We visit the Mogao Grottoes and experience a short camel-ride along the Echoing-Sand Dune to reach the Crescent Lake for a visit. Overnight in Dunhuang

Day 9 Dunhuang Departure

Sightseeing and Activities
Meals: Breakfast

We finish our wonderful Lop Nur adventure trip and transfer you to the airport for your flight home.

Service Included:

  • Admission fees for all of the sightseeing spots listed in the itinerary;
  • Meals as listed in the itinerary;
  • Hotels as listed in the itinerary;
  • Private English-speaking tour guide;
  • Private vehicle for transfers & sightseeing with skilled driver;
  • Service charge & government taxes;
  • Luggage transfers between airports and hotels;

Service Excluded:

  • Any arrival and departure international airfares or train tickets;
  • Chinese visa fees;
  • Excess baggage charged by Airlines;
  • Single room supplement;
  • Tips to guides and drivers;
  • Personal expenses and gratuities to service staff;
  • Personal travel accident insurance;
  • All optional programs.