Imagine departing Xian in a camel caravan laden with silk, spices, incense and gems for the far-away Mediterranean. Your path will not take you all the way to Italy, but only to the border with the Stans. You can see the famous terra cotta soldiers of Xian, drive across the menacing Taklimakan Desert, explore the oasis towns of Turfan, Kuqa, and Hotan, spend a day with the nomads near the Heavenly Lake, shop the famous Sunday Market in exotic Hotan (far better than Kashgar today), and mingle with the people of Xinjiang - Uighurs, Kazaks, Tajiks and others.

Dates and Land Cost

Starting at $7225.00 per person (based on 4-6 people)

Dates: Friday, May 8, 2015 - Sunday, May 24, 2015 and Friday, September 11, 2015 - Sunday, September 27, 2015

Please note: Custom dates and prices available

Trip Concepts

  • Cultures and Crafts
  • Environment and Natural History

Customized Travel

This is not just a slogan - it's the way we do business.

If this trip itinerary isn't exactly what you want or if the group departure dates don't quite fit your timeframe, we would be thrilled to create a personalized trip that matches exactly what you, your friends or your family wish to do. Since its inception in 1988, Myths and Mountains has been a pioneer in the field of customized and solo travel. We know that there's no such thing as "one itinerary fits all," and we're committed to matching your particular trip to your dreams.

So, go back and look at the itinerary carefully. Check what you like and don't like and give us a call. We'll ask you lots of questions designed to help us understand your travel style, budget, interests, and wishes, and then we'll channel all our global connections, in-depth destination knowledge, and decades of travel planning experience into creating an extraordinary adventure filled with unforgettable experiences. Our custom trips are not just standard "packages" adjusted to fit your travel dates - they're individually tailored itineraries, as unique as you are.

Here's how we will collaborate with you:

1. Read through the itineraries that interest you and think about what you like and don't like, the dates, other places you might want to visit or other activities.

2. E-mail us at or call us at 800-670-6984 to let us know your thoughts.

3. Talk with us about what worked and did not work in the programs you were considering, where you want to go, your timeframe, travel companions, budget, special interests and travel style.

4. We will send a brief sketch and approximate land cost based on our discussion, for you to review that includes the suggested changes we discussed.

5. Based on your feedback of the sketch, we will rework your itinerary according to your guidelines. Should you wish to talk with previous travelers who have asked us for customized itineraries, we are happy to give you references.

6. Review the new program. If it works, we will usually ask for a deposit: 25% of the cost, 50% if you are 120 days out. At that point, we will confirm all of the reservations and guides, send you a full packet of preliminary information and prepare your formal, personalized, detailed daily itinerary.

After all, it's your unique vacation. Invite your family. Bring your friends. Dream big. Then call us and let us make your dream a reality.

Itinerary At A Glance

Day 1 Arrive in Beijing
Day 2 Fly to Xian; Visit the Terracotta Soldier and Horse Museum; Explore the Muslim Quarter
Day 3 Tour Xian including Little Goose Pagoda, Big White Goose Pagoda, Shaanxi Museum
Day 4 Fly to Dunhuang; Drive out to Crescent Lake and the Gobi Desert
Day 5 Visit the Dunhuang Grotto Art and Mogao Grottos; Board an overnight sleeper train to Turpan
Day 6 Explore the ruins of Gaochang, Huoyan Shan and Bazelik Thousand Buddha Caves
Day 7 Wander the market, visit the Emin Minaret, the Jiaohe Ruins and a few grape farms
Day 8 Head west to Urumqi and visit the Xinjiang Autonomous Region Museum; Fly to Hotan
Day 9 Hike in the desert out to the Rawak Pagoda or explore the town
Day 10 Head to Mingfeng; Stop in Yu Tien for the market and visit the mosque
Day 11 Drive to Kuqa
Day 12 Explore Kizil Caves and the Kezikalahan War Signaling Station
Day 13 Explore Kuqa
Day 14 Fly back to Urumqi and drive out to Heavenly Lake
Day 15 Morning at leisure and then drive back to Urumqi
Day 16 Fly to Beijing
Day 17 Transfer to the airport for your fight home

Contact Us

Adventure. Experience. Transform. Let the culture embrace you.

Myths and Mountains is THE adventure travel company for the discerning and inquisitive globe-trotter seeking a hand-crafted, life-changing experience. With more than 25 years of expertise in designing award-winning trips focusing on cultures and crafts, religion and pilgrimage sites, environment and natural history and natural healing and traditional medicine, we promise adventures beyond the guidebooks, excellence beyond expectations, and guaranteed departures.

Want a custom-designed trip just for you and your friends? It's our specialty! Welcome to a remarkable experience - Myths and Mountains style!