Travel to Turpan Xinjiang with this Travel ebook | Xinjiang: Far West China

Travel to Turpan Xinjiang with this Travel ebook

April 26, 2010 | 27 Comments

FarWestChina's Turpan Travel Guide

All of the major China travel books provide an ocean of information about Beijing, Shanghai, and Hong Kong while only gently dipping their toes into the enormous province of Xinjiang.  After years of fielding questions from FarWestChina readers who are seeking advice about traveling in the province I finally decided that it was time to do my part to fix this void of information.  So I wrote my own travel guide.

…a must-read for anyone considering a visit to China’s northwest… – Asian Ramblings

I’m a perfectionist, however, which means that such an undertaking would not be easy.   From July to October, a period during which I had plenty of free time with no access to the internet, I spent countless hours researching, traveling and writing about the province I love most: Xinjiang.  A guide on the entire province would be far-too difficult I realized, so I shifted my focus to the three most-traveled cities in the region: Turpan, Urumqi, and Kashgar.

I’m finally ready to unveil the first ebook in this series of three entitled Turpan: Exploring Xinjiang’s Ancient Ruins, and for those of you who will be traveling to Xinjiang this summer I’m happy to announce that it’s going to be the most affordable guide you’ve ever downloaded at on $4.99!

This 38 page booklet includes:

  • Example pages from the Turpan Travel GuideA detailed map of Turpan as well as diagrams of the ancient cities you can visit there – all hand-drawn by yours truly!
  • In-depth historical background on the region that you won’t find in any major travel book
  • Plenty of colorful pictures to help you decide which places you want to visit
  • Tips on where to go, how to save money, and how to stay safe
  • A language guide to teach you basic phrases in both Mandarin AND Uyghur
  • Find a Turpan hotel that caters to foreign tourist

It’s the most comprehensive English-language guide to Turpan out there, written by somebody who has lived and traveled in the Xinjiang province for almost 6 years.

Download the Turpan eGuide

It’s Worth it…Don’t Take my Word for It

This guide has been downloaded hundreds of times over and has been updated every year for the past 3 years. I’ve asked those who have downloaded the guide for their thoughts, and here’s what they wrote:

“Josh was unstinting in his advice to me on where to go in Xinjiang.  He said Tuyuq, a village off the beaten path, was the place to see.  He was right.  It was like I had stepped in a time machine and gone back a thousand years!” – Marc Mooney

“When we were planning our “Silk Road” tour (the trip of a lifetime), FarWestChina was invaluable in pointing us to useful people, places, and information.” – Peter Stern

“2 years ago, when I had to switch from Tibet to Xinjiang on a dime, Josh’s book on Turpan helped me have a wonderful in-depth adventure which I will never forget!” – Ida Leung

“When we went to Turpan last year, your ebook guide was indispensible. I had a great time there, besides getting caught in quicksand in Tuyoq” – Robert Warnerford-Thompson

“I used FarWestChina’s Turpan eBook and had one of the best (and easiest) trips of all my jaunts throughout Xinjiang!” – Ashley Thompson

“To put it simply, FarWestChina’s Turpan e-book made things easy there. Sure, I could have managed without, like I managed in plenty of other places in China, but there, I knew in advance, with the right amount of detail, which places I wanted to visit and which I did not (but others might want to).” – Laurent Lugand

Download the Turpan eGuide

About Josh Summers

Josh is a writer, musician and entrepreneur who currently resides in Urumqi, capital of China's western province of Xinjiang. He has been traveling and writing about this region since 2006 and has no plans to stop in the near future.

Leave a Comment

  1. Good stuff, good stuff. Have you ever written anything about the six-month period you spent without the Internet? We’re so wired at all times now, spending such a long chunk of time offline like that must be pretty liberating and/or frustrating.


    Josh on May 5th, 2010 at 9:00 am

    I have written a few things on the matter. You can read all my articles related to the communications blackout including my personal feelings and a better idea of what internet is like in the province.

    Thanks for the comment!


  2. AMAZING! I wish we had had this book while we were in Turpan. Instead we wondered around under the hottest sun imaginable trying to figure things out via guesswork. Really, an amazing concept and great addition to the sadly lacking literature on Xinjiang. Always a fan!


  3. Thanks, Josh. Loved the guide – very informative, very helpful. Our friend from Urumqi went to Turpan with us, and was impressed to see such a guide in English. Suggestion for the future guides: if not hiring a driver for the whole day, how much should you expect to pay from one site to another? We did okay, but the drivers waiting at the bus station (especially that one guy with the good English) see an American and quote you ridiculous prices! And I imagine someone has paid that.


    Josh on May 31st, 2010 at 11:49 pm

    Thanks Art! I’m excited to hear that it worked well “in the field”.

    When you talk about “one site to another”, do you mean like going from Jiaohe to Emin? Or just a round trip to one location? I like your suggestion, I just want to clarify.


  4. Hey josh, quick question: are you still working on the other guides, to Urumqi and Kashgar? I’m thinking of moving out west (living in Beijing now) this Spring, and have found the local, non-touristy information on both of these cities sorely lacking, so would be really interested to see these guides (particularly Urumqi, since I have a feeling thats where I’ll wind up). Thanks!


    Josh on September 27th, 2011 at 8:24 am

    Thanks for asking, Matt. Yes, I have finished up the Urumqi guide but the Kashgar guide has taken me a while due to lack of motivation. Shoot me an email if you’re interested and I’ll be happy to send over what I have for Urumqi as long as you realize that it’s not a final proof. josh {at} farwestchina {dot} com.


  5. I really enjoyed your guide and just got back from an 11-day trip to Turpan and Kashgar. Here’s some things I discovered that might be useful in your new guides/revisions:

    The Jiaotong Hotel in Turpan has a new phone number. It is listed nowhere on the internet, not even on Chinese-language websites. It’s a mystery why they don’t care to advertise their new telephone number, but anyway here it is: 0995-6258666, 0995-6258688. I know that recently a lot of travelers, Chinese and non-Chinese, have been wondering if the Jiaotong Hotel is closed. It is not; they just have a new number.

    In Kashgar, all foreigners are required to secure a permit to travel on the Karakorum Highway now, without exceptions. There are military checkpoints on the highway (complete with armed soldiers), the first one being well before Lake Karakul. Anyone without a permit and a passport is turned back. As a result, any foreigner who wants to arrange their own transportation, hitchhike, or take a public bus — i.e., not go through a Kashgar travel agency — must arrange their own permit at least one day before their trip. I don’t know how to do that, and I don’t know anyone else who knows how to do that, so it is highly recommended that travelers at least use a travel agency to secure the permit the day before travel. I’m not sure if they’ll help you with that if you’re not going to use their services, though.

    There is a public bus that goes to/from the airport in Kashgar to the center of town. It is the line 2 and the trip only costs 2 RMB. This is much cheaper than a taxi (appr. 30 RMB) or the airport shuttle (15 RMB). You have to go through the main front entrance of the airport, past the front gate, and turn left on the road. About 20 meters down, you’ll see the line 2 buses.

    If I think of anything else I learned on my trip, I’ll let you know. Thanks for giving us this great guide! I used it a lot in Turpan.


  6. Thank you very much for your ebook. It is very detailed and will help me to prepare my trip in Turpan.


    Josh on July 31st, 2013 at 3:18 pm

    You’re welcome, Thibaut! Glad it was helpful for you and I’d love to see any of the pictures you took there.


  7. Hello –
    I am from Indonesia, and planning to visit Xinjiang in the near future. It is very glad for me to have this website where I find a lot of information about the place.
    I would like to have a copy of Turpan: Exploring Xinjiang’s Ancient Ruins and guidebook for Kashgar and its surrounding area.

    Warm regard from Indonesia


The 2015 Xinjiang travel guide is here!