Daily VIP Xi’an Terracotta Warriors and City Discovery Tour

Uncover the amazing history and vivid stories behind the terracotta figures that were buried for over 2,000 years. Step onto the top of Xi’an Ancient City Wall — walk or cycle along it, feeling and touching the invisible soul of this ancient city. Act like a Xi’an local, tasting and experiencing the original local food and culture that you may never encounter as a typical tourist.

There are no fake luxuries and pomposity but true life and experiences. There are no boring, textbook-style history lessons but vivid stories that come to life. There is no tourist shopping, no time-wasting, and no queuing but a smartly-arranged itinerary. There is no spurious boasting and so-called “promises” but real enthusiasm and a detailed plan that we call our “services”.

Tour Highlights

Skip the line at the entrance of Terracotta Warriors Museum.

Use a telescope to get a closer view of the terracotta warriors.

Use an FM headset to keep out external noise disturbances.

Get a panoramic view of the city by walking, cycling, or taking an eco-car on the City Wall.

Taste the local people’s favorite daily food at a local featured restaurant.


Guide, Driver, Vehicle, and Customer Service Support

Guide: better than a normal licensed tour guide; friendly and helpful with fluent English

Driver: reliable licensed local driver with at least 5 years' driving experience

Vehicle: Air-conditioned business car (max: 7 seats) with GPS facilities, big windows, and ample space (at least one vacant seat guaranteed)

China Highlights Xi'an Office: English-speaking backup support — We are very happy to hear your voice

Professional product team analysis on every part of the trip to ensure a smooth and enjoyable travel experience.


Detailed Itinerary

The day before your tour date
You are advised to find more details about your tour guide, driver and pick up time via this site: https://www.trippest.com/track-your-trip.html. All information will be updated only 24 hours ahead of your tour date. If you failed in getting the information, please try to contact your trip advisor.
Collection from Your Hotel

Your guide will be waiting for you in your hotel lobby at the appointed time holding a sign with the China Highlights logo and your name on it.

If, for any reason, you miss your tour guide, please ask the staff at the hotel's front desk to help you make a telephone call to your tour guide or to contact China Highlights' Xi'an office using the 24/7 emergency hotline at +86-18182404759 (24 hours). We will help you solve the problem.

Good to know:

  • The hotel pick-up and drop-off area should be within the third ring road of Xi'an. For further distance there might be an extra cost for the transfer which you'll be notified by your travel advisor.
  • People don't like wasting their time during tours, such as queuing to get tickets to see the Terracotta Army, or being in very noisy, overcrowded, and uncomfortable situations. That's why your trip begins early in the morning so that you will reach the Terracotta Army before the crowds start to arrive.

China Highlights Tour Guide

China Highlights vehicle

Drive to the Terracotta Warrior Museum

The distance from downtown Xi'an to the Terracotta Warrior Museum is about 45 kilometers. Normally, it takes about 50 minutes to drive there.

Tour Map of the Day

You will acquire rich background information about the city from your well-educated, expert guide. Being prepared with a little knowledge about the Terracotta Army beforehand is highly recommended for a perfect trip if you don't just want to see lots of similar-looking stone statues.

We recommend you watch the following video on YouTube about the history of the Terracotta Army and Emperor Qin Shi Huang: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mP5p4QbvPtc (this brief video is about 5 minutes long).

Alternatively, you can watch this video for a more detailed introduction: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=j-1IcaeuGnw (it takes about 45 minutes).

Visit the Terracotta Warriors and the Mausoleum of Qin Shi Huang

Your exploration of the Terracotta Army site begins. Please follow your guide to discover the amazing terracotta warriors that were buried for more than 2,000 years and to hear interesting stories about China's first emperor — Emperor Qin Shi Huang (259–210 BC).

Quick facts of Qin Shi Huang

There are three pits in the museum. Our recommended visiting sequence is Pit 1 – Pit 2 – Pit 3 – Bronze Chariot Pit – the Mausoleum of Qin Shi Huang as you will follow historical clues that lead from general to detailed information.

Pit 1 is the largest of the pits and it is estimated to house around 6,000 figures as well as a great quantity of bronze weaponry. You will be shocked by the large scale of the figures lining up, and will feel as if you have been taken back to the Qin Dynasty when the army of soldiers was waiting to go out to battle.

Pit 1 is the largest one

Figures in Pit 1

Conservation and Restoration Open Workshop

How to make a terra cotta warrior

Pit 2 is not as large as Pit 1. It is estimated that the terracotta warriors and horses in this pit amount to 1,300 figures. However, the great variety makes it top-rated among all three pits.

Pit 3 is the smallest one with only 72 terracotta warriors and horses. It is believed that it served as the headquarters for the army, directing the warriors in Pit 1 and Pit 2.

The Bronze Chariot Pit exhibits two painted bronze chariots in a large scale. As burial objects, the bronze chariots represent Emperor Qin Shi Huang's vehicles. Crowned as "the King of Bronze Ware", the bronze chariots are the earliest, largest, and best-preserved bronze artifacts in the world.

The Bronze Chariot Pit

When you take a closer look at the different clay figures' details, you'll find each figure has its own unique face. Please notice the differences in their hairstyles, headwear, and gestures. These are used to show their military ranks.

Next, around 8-minute driving, you'll be transferred from the museum to the best ViewPoint where you can view the whole area of the Maosoleunm of Qin Shi Huang. Considered that the tomb of Qin Shi Huang has little to see, we will visit the site by viewing at a distance instead of taking a close look at. You'll be shocked by the large size of the mausoleum. As the scale of the excavated terracotta army area only occupies about 5% of the whole mausoleum, 95% of the mausoleum is still buried and its contents remain secret. Your tour guide will tell the story why the Qin Shi Huang choose this site to expect to continue his rule in death as it had in life, and some inference about the structure and distribution of the underground palace.

With the narration from your guide, you will indulge in the splendid civilization of the great Qin Dynasty, and the following mysteries will be gradually unraveled:

Why are there no female warriors? Why are most of the soldiers not wearing helmets? Why are many figures without heads? Why is 95% of the mausoleum still buried rather than excavated? What are the differences between the mausoleum of Emperor Qin Shi Huang and the pyramids of the pharaohs in Egypt? Why were the emperors and pharaohs so interested in building their tombs?

View the Mausoleum of Qin Shi Huang at a distance

Each figure has its own unique face

Good to know:

  • It is very crowded and noisy during the high season. In order to make sure you can hear what your guide is saying, we have prepared an FM headset so that you can hear your guide clearly and do not miss any interesting stories.
  • All three pits are protected from tourists by a certain distance restriction. The 8,000 statues of terracotta soldiers are all individual and it is impossible to find two of them that look exactly like each other. Some look happy with slightly raised cheeks while some look sad with frowning eyebrows. However, as they are all protected from tourists by a distance of 20 meters, how will you see the details? As a privilege for our customers, you will be equipped with a telescope so that there will be no secrets left in front of you.

Equipped with a FM headset

Equipped with a telescope

China Highlights Kiosk

Have Lunch at a Local Restaurant

We have selected a local restaurant near the Terracotta Warriors Museum. There, you can experience the most authentic Xi'an local food.

You'll have the chance to taste the local people's favorite food, such as Rou Jia Mo (肉夹馍, we also call it a Chinese hamburger), Yang Rou Pao Mo (羊肉泡馍, pita bread soaked in lamb soup; your guide will show you how to break the bread into small pieces), noodles, and dumplings.

Please let us know your food preferences, such as a vegetarian diet, Muslim food, gluten-free food, etc. so that we can make preparations in advance.

Break the bread

Chinese hamburger

Drive Back to Xi'an Ancient City Wall (East Gate)

After lunch, you'll be driven back to Xi'an for the next destination, Xi'an Ancient City Wall. It will take about 50 minutes for the journey. A nap might be necessary for you to feel refreshed.

Walking, Biking, or Taking an Eco-Car to Visit Xi'an Ancient City Wall

Xi'an Ancient City Wall was first built in the Ming Dynasty (1370–1378 AD) and is the largest and the best-maintained ancient city wall in China. It is shaped like a rectangle with a total length of 13.74 kilometers. The downtown part of Xi'an City is centered within this ancient city wall. There are four major gates (the north gate, the east gate, the south gate, and the west gate) of this city wall. Your visit will start from East Gate (Chang Le Gate).

You have three options when visiting the city wall. You can choose to walk part of the city wall (we suggest you walk from East Gate to South Gate, which is about 3.5 kilometers, and finally meet your guide and the other tour members at South Gate at 4:30pm).

Or you can cycle along the city wall (your guide will help you to rent a bike and we suggest you cycle from East Gate – North Gate – West Gate – South Gate, which is about 10 kilometers, and finally meet your guide and the other tour members at South Gate at about 4:30pm).

We highly recommend you to take the eco-car running on the city wall (your guide will buy the tickets for you). This runs from East Gate – North Gate – West Gate – South Gate and you will meet your guide and the other tour members at South Gate at about 4:30pm (the Bicycle Service Station). But in summer, it is very hot on the wall, so we suggest you to ride the essential part of the City Wall from East Gate to South Gate only, which is about 3.5 kilometers.

On the city wall, you can wander around, free your mind, and digest the details of the city, the people, and the culture.

Cycle along the city wall

take the eco-car running on the city wall

Your guide will be waiting for you here.

Visit Xi'an's Most Famous Food Street — Muslim Street

After visiting the city wall, you will head to Xi'an's most famous food street, Muslim Street, where you'll see lots of featured foods and snacks. You can try some if you'd like to.

Please take note of the following tips for this food street:

  • This is Muslim Street, where most local people are Muslims. Please try to respect their traditions and follow instructions from your guide.
  • Please be aware of your bag as this street is very crowded and noisy; watch out for pickpockets.
  • Please follow your guide as there are many people and it is very easy to get lost.
  • You can try some food there but it's better to ask your guide for recommendations as some of the food and shops have bad sanitary conditions.

Muslim Street

Drive Back to Your Hotel or Stay in Muslim Street and Explore the City by Yourself

Please make sure to reserve at least 3 hours if you want to catch an onward flight or 2 hours if you want to catch an onward train. Please book the transfer with us in advance and tell us your flight (or train) number and departure time.

Tip notes: Tip your guide and driver is not a compulsory requirement but would be a great affirmation of their services. Therefore, we suggest you to give your guide and driver 60 – 100 yuan per person as this would be a great encouragement for them.

You may follow us on our Facebook page to see the latest updates, photos and posts from your tour guide at: https://www.facebook.com/trippest/


What Makes Us Different

We offer a deeper exploration into the culture and history and a better experience.

We have prepared FM headsets and telescopes for our customers to make sure you can hear and watch clearly in the terracotta warriors while other groups are struggling and get lost in the crowds.

Travel your own way

Experience the real local life and culture of Xi'an people.

You will taste the local food and culture in a local way while other groups have to go to the tourist restaurant and eat the food just for tourists.

Experience the real local life

There are no shop stops, no long lines and waits, and no time-wasting activities.

We never take our customers to the tourist shops while other groups have to waste their time and money on the over-priced souvenirs.

No waiting, no time-wasting.

Tour Price

Season Adult (age > 12) Child (age 2 – 11) Infant (age < 2)
Shoulder Season $105 USD $90 USD free
Peak Season $125 USD $100 USD free

Note: The peak season includes the following dates: China National Day: 01/Oct/2018 - 07/Oct/2018. Chinese Spring Festival: 04/Feb/2019 - 10/Feb/2019. Other dates are indicated as shoulder season.

Price Includes:

  • Admission to Xi'an City Wall and Terra Cotta Warrior Museum and Qin Shi Huang Mausoleum park.
  • Bike or e-bike rental on the City Wall.
  • Transport between attractions, including pickup and return to your hotel (within the third ring road of Xi'an).
  • English-speaking expert local guide.
  • Lunch at a Xi'an local restaurant.

Price Excludes:

  • Personal expenses
  • Hotel
  • Gratuities to the tour guide & driver (usually CNY 60 - 100 per person per day for each of them, please tip them separately.). It is not compulsory but would be a great encouragement for them.
  • Airport transfer.

Additional information:

  • Guaranteed daily departure.
  • You'll be a part of a small group with maximum 6 people.

China Highlights Cancellation Policy for Xi'an Tours

  • If we are not able to implement the contract due to war, flood, typhoon, fire, strikes, storm, earthquake, or any other condition we are not able to foresee and avoid, we will inform customers at the first possible opportunity and offer the best possible solutions, and the final bill shall be settled based on the service we actually provide.
  • Up to 7 days before departure: 100% refund of all money paid, excluding penalties charged by hotels, railways, airlines, and PayPal, if applicable. All penalties will be itemized.
  • From 3 to 7 days before departure: 90% refund, excluding penalties charged by hotels, railways, airlines, and PayPal, if applicable. All penalties will be itemized.
  • Within 3 days before departure: no refund.
  • After the trip has commenced, we are unable to refund any amount for cancelled services due to non-participation, early departure, late arrival, or missed days on tours.
  • For groups of more than 10 people: The terms for cancellation may vary from case to case. Please ask your travel advisor regarding the cancellation policy for your group.

only $105 USD P/P

100% Customers Satisfaction, Money Back Guarantee.
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Contact Our Xi'an Local Office

  • +86-18182404759 (24 hours)
  • niko@chinahighlights.net
  • Room 715, Unit 2,LiJiaChun Wanda Plaza,No.8 Yanta lu beiduan, Beilin District, Xi'an, China
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