This journey will explore one of the smallest province of China - Ningxia. With Inner Mongolia in the north and Gansu in the South, Ningxia is the large Muslim community along Yellow River. We will visit the famous pyramid-like Western XiXia tombs at the foot of the Helan Mountainsand, then cross the border from Ningxia into Inner Mongolia desert dunes. You will camp in desert for one night (barbecue and bonfire) and another night stay in wooden villas by the oasis in the heart of desert, climb aboard a military truck and drive up and over the shifting sand dunes - an experience of a lifetime!. And ride camel climbing up and over the steep sand dunes to appreciate dramatic desert landscape.
Situated in the eastern part of the inland northwest, Ningxia is at the Great Bend of the Yellow River (Huanghe). The northern Ningxia is surrounded by Inner Mongolia while the southern part is bounded by Gansu Province and on the east by Shanxi Province. It was once an important stop along the north Silk Road, connecting the central Asia, north desert and inland plains.
Yellow River & Tengger Desert
Yellow River winds through Ningxia for about 400 kilometers and becomes the main source of irrigation here. It makes an abrupt turn at Zhongwei county upon entering Ningxia from the west, forming the Shapotou scenic zone. Tengger Desert in inner Mongolia from the north is stopped at Shapoutou by the Yellow river, resulting in a huge sand dune. From here driving deep into the heart of the desert, you can camp, ride camel or surf the sand dune by jeep.
You can appreciate dramatic desert landscape by climbing aboard a military truck or jeep and drive up and over the shifting sand dunes - an experience of a lifetime! Camel ride climbing up and over the steep sand dunes to view the Sun Lake is another great experience.
The Famous Western Xixia Tombs
The Western Xia tombs are spectacular pyramid-shaped structures set on a gentle slope along the east base of the Helan Mountains about 30km from Yinchuan. The remnants of nine Western Xia emperors' tombs and two hundred other tombs lie within a 50-km area. Other famous sites in Ningxia include Mount Helan Shan and its frescos and the twin pagodas of Baisikou.
Water Cave Gully & The Ming Great Wall
Donkey cart ride along the plants in the desert to the gully and the boat ride on the water to view the rammed earth Great Wall are special experience.
The below are popular tourist sites for local tourists, which are not included in the CCC itinerary.
Yellow River Muslims and Goatskin Rafting
The Han Chinese muslims live near Zhongwei for centuries. Muslim architecture, villages and schools and traditonal life are well kept. You will try goat-skin rafting on the river, which used to be the major vehicle to take people across the Yellow river 40, 50 years ago in this area. Now the raft is floating upon 14 pieces of goat skin pumped with air.
Shapotou Sand Dunes and Amusement Area
Shapotou near Zhongwei now has already become an amusement park in the desert and touristy, where tourists ride ostriches or camels, and slide on the sand.
* Climbing aboard a jeep and drive up and over the shifting sand dunes - an experience of a lifetime!.
* Camp in the heart of desert with barbecue and bonfire
* Camel ride climbing up and over the steep sand dunes to appreciate dramatic desert landscape
* Visit the Famous Western XiXia tombs at the foot of the Helan Mountains.
Spring and fall
Day 1: Fly into Yinchuan / Alashan / Tengger Desert hiking, jeep surfing and camping
- Take the early morning flight to Yinchuan
Other locales: we welcome those to join us from other locales and meet us in Yinchuan
- Transfer from Airport to air-conditioned bus, head to Alashan Zuoqi (near Tengger Desert) (2 hours) for a lunch break.
- We start to get on the jeep for exciting sand-dune surfing in the desert and passing a few oasis while our luggage and food being carried by the jeep.
- Have a break at the Swan Lake.
- In the late afternoon when it is cool and has beautiful views of the desert, we begin to have a 6 km hike in the desert till the sunset. Alternatively ride jeep again if you are not interested in hiking.
- Continue with an 25 km jeep ride until we arrive at the camp site, another oasis of the day.
- Set up tents and then enjoy barbeque dinner, bonfire or count the stars.
Day 2: Inner Mongolia Tengger Desert: Hiking, jeep surfing & camel riding
- Wake up for the sunrise.(optional)
- Again, we start the day with a 5 km jeep ride, then hike another 4 km to the Moon lake- Moon lake, another salty spring-fed lake in the middle of the desert, and check into the two-story villa style hotel in the resort at one corner of the lake.
- Fresh up, lunch at the resort.
- Go for camel ride in the late afternoon.
- Activities by the lake include swimming in the clear lake, sliding sand and carting.(optional & seasonal)
- Stay overnight in the resort.
Day 3: Inner Mongolia Tengger Desert / Ningxia: Xixia Tomb/ Yinchuan / Fly out
- Enjoy the peaceful morning in the middle of the desert, and then leave the desert via our last jeep ride.(30-40 minuts)
- Return to Yinchuan, on the way, take photo of the Han dynasty Great Wall.
- Visit one of the main heritage sites in the region, the famous Xixia Tombs site (nicknamed Oriental Pyramid) located 30 km west of Yinchuan. The remnants of nine Western Xia emperors' tombs and two hundred other tombs lie within a 50-km² area.
- Have lunch and then transfer to the Yinchuan airport to fly out.
- Please note that you will board in the military truck or jeep driving up and over the shifting sand dunes for 30-40 minutes. It is challenging and exhilarating; you need strong arms to hold on, and it is not for the faint-hearted. Also, it is not recommended for people with any medical or physical impediment. The hotel/ camp site is isolated and we do not return to civilization and medical facilities until the next day. However, if you are fit and adventurous, gather your courage and prepare for an experience of a lifetime.
Beijing price: RMB 6600 Single Supplement: RMB 1100
Shanghai price: RMB 6900 Single Supplement: RMB 1100
Children ages 2-4 pay 50% of total tour price. (Single supplement would be applied if there is a need of extra bed)
Children ages 5-7 pay 60% of total tour price.
Children ages 8-11 pay 80% of total tour price.
Children ages under 2 pay nothing for the tour but may incur the transport costs listed below:
Train tickets cost:
If they require their own berthat on the train they will have to purchase an adult ticket
10% of adult ticket if the child does not require his/her own seat
50% of adult ticket if the child requires his/her own seat
CCC calculates its trip prices and books its trip accommodations based on dual-occupancy rooms. Therefore, single travelers who is booking this trip as a lone passenger, and for whom CCC cannot find a room-mate when booking or paying for the trip, will have to pay the “Single supplement”. Should a room-mate be found, the Single Supplement paid shall be refunded.
CCC services include:
--round flights Beijing/Shanghai-Yinchuan(Economy Class tickets. Business and First Class are available upon request and at an additional cost.)
--1 night camping and one night Moon Lake resort hotel (two-storey wooden villas)
--transfers in customary air conditioned coaches + jeep or military truck + camel rides between lakes.
--entrance fee for all sights mentioned in the program
--all sightseeing and transfers with CCC guides & local English-speaking tour guides
--All meals during the trip
--Gratuities to the guide and driver
--Local travel insurance
Payment Terms and Conditions
Payment must be received before published deadline to receive corresponding price. Please refer to the following terms and conditions associated with each method of payment:
Payment at office: CCC must receive the amount (Cash or from credit card) before the published deadline to receive corresponding price.
Credit card: If paying by international credit card authorization form (moto form), CCC must receive your form 2 days before the published deadline in order to have time to process it, and for funds to be received on/by the published deadline.(click to view details)
Bank Transfer: CCC now requires that your payment must be transferred into Chinese RMB before you wire your bank transfer. We must receive a copy of the bank transfer receipt before the published deadline in order to guarantee your price.
Last minute booking: CCC cannot guarantee that we will be able to reserve tickets and rooms at this late stage but we will try our best. Thank you for your understanding.
CCC will respond to every email concerning payment immediately. If you do not hear from us this may indicate that we may not have received your email and we would advise you to call us to confirm. We cannot guarantee that we receive every email so the onus is on you to ensure we receive the payment information before the published deadlines. Thank you for your understanding.