Xining Sky Mirror Family Tour

2 Days Xining

Have you ever wondered what it would be like in western China? Located in Xining, Qinghai Province, Qinghai Lake is the largest inland lake in China and it is famous for its pure water. Compared with other lakes, Qinghai Lake is over 3,000 meters above the sea, which is even higher than the average altitude of the Alps. In addition, Qinghai Lake is crystal clear and can reflect the sky, which is also called the “Sky Mirror”. Besides, China family tour to Xining is popular in China. Every year, millions of families will come to Xining for catching a glimpse of the “Sky Mirror”. If you are longing for a China family tour package to Xining for enjoying the happiness of being with your families while exploring the mysterious west world of China, Xining family tour is the option you won’t want to miss!

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Day by Day Itinerary
Day 1 Xining/Qinghai Lake
Arrival in Xining. Drive you to Qinghai Lake, Erlangjian Scenic Area

In the morning, your tour guide holding your name sigh will pick you up in the airport. Then your tour guide will drive you directly to the Qinghai Lake. Qinghai Lake is to the west of Xining, 156 kilometers away from the city, and it will take you more than 2 hours to get there. You can take a rest or enjoy the view on either side of the road along the way. Trust me, the landscape of the plateau will amaze you.

After arriving, you can enjoy the natural beauty! Qinghai Lake got its name from the Tibetan word “TSO WAN PO”, which means the cyan lake. In Chinese, the word “qing” means cyan, and the word “hai” means the sea. However, given that the local people live far from seas and never see the real seas, they usually regard the lake as the sea. Besides, there also are many mysterious stories about the lake. Legend says that this place used to be the dwelling places where the Queen Mother of the West in Chinese mythology lived. In the Qing Dynasty (1636-1912), a book named Records of the Xining recorded that the local people once saw an unidentified creature in the lake. It had the head of the cattle and the body of the leopard, which swam as fast as a frightened fish. Upon noticing people, it swiftly dived into the water. Until now, people still have no idea about whether the creature exists or not, which makes the lake even more mysterious. Standing beside the lake, you can see the marshmallow-like clouds and the mirror-like lake. It is a good chance for you to immerse yourself in this splendid scene and create some unforgettable memories for your China family tour.

After lunch, we will go to the Erlangjian Scenic Area. You might have heard the Monkey King in Journey to the West, one of China’s four great classic novels. The legend goes that when the Monkey King fought with Erlang (another god in Chinese myth), Erlang’s sword fell into the lake and thus formed this place. After walking into the area, you will see many cruise ships on the lake with seagulls hovering overhead, as if you are standing by the sea. Besides, there are plenty of Tibetan-style buildings with characteristic decorations, which make this area a wonderful place to take pictures. After enjoying a day of beautiful views of Qinghai Lake, our guide will take you back to your hotel. Have a good rest in the hotel and get ready for a more exciting trip tomorrow!

Qinghai Lake
Qinghai Lake
Erlangjian Scenic Area
Erlangjian Scenic Area
Day 2 Xining Departure
Kumbum Monastery, Qinghai Tibetan Medicine Culture Museum, Dongguan Mosque. Escort you to the hotel, train station, or airport

The first attraction we will visit today is Kumbum Monastery. It is 29 kilometers southwest of downtown Xining, about a 40-minute drive. Established in 1379, Kumbum Monastery is the center of Tibetan Buddhism in northwest China. In this monastery, there are yak butter sculptures, imaginative barbola, and exquisite murals, among which the yak butter sculptures are the most distinctive. Yak butter is a kind of butter refined from yak’s milk. When making the yak butter sculpture, people need to soak their hands in the water below 0 degrees Celsius(32 degrees Fahrenheit) to decrease the hands’ temperature as yak butter will melt when encountering high temperature. Yak butter sculpture includes the patterns of figures, animals, flowers, and so on. Besides, the monastery houses many Buddhist classics and academic monographs about history, literature, philosophy, medicine, legislation, etc. It is a great chance to know of Tibetan Buddhism.

After touring Kumbum Monastery, we will visit the Qinghai Tibetan Medicine Culture Museum, which is the only museum in the world that reflects Tibetan culture and also listed in the Guinness World Records. The most precious treasure of the museum is the painting gallery, which you can not miss. This painting gallery is 618 meters long and 2.5 meters wide, displaying over 700 Thangka paintings with countless Barbola patterns. More than 400 top craft artists from Tibetan, Mongolian, Han, and Tu nationalities took four years to complete it. Besides, there are lots of surgical instruments, ancient medical books, etc. related to Chinese medicine on display. I believe you will have a new understanding of Chinese medicine after visiting the museum. Moreover, it is also a good place for your children to acquire Chinese medicine knowledge.

After lunch, we will visit the last attraction of our 2-day Xining family tour, the Dongguan Mosque. Established in the same period when the Kumbum Monastery was built, Dongguan Mosque covers 13,602 square meters, equivalent to the size of two Notre Dame de Paris. This majestic buildings in this mosque features ancient Chinese architecture and Islamic-style architecture. On weekends or Muslim religious holidays, tens of thousands of Muslims gather to hold grand ceremonies in Dongguan Mosque.  

After visiting the mosque, our family tour to Xining will come to an end. Your tour guide will escort you to the hotel, train station, or airport, and you can prepare for following tours. If you post the photos that you took in Xining on your social media, I believe your friends will envy you!

Kumbum Monastery
Kumbum Monastery
Dongguan Mosque
Dongguan Mosque


Author: Ziyang Zhang

Proofreader: Yan Liu

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