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Xi'an
Travel Guide

Drum Tower which includes heritage architecture and a city

Explore museums full of precious artefacts, cycle along one of the country’s most complete city walls and visit hot springs at this major city in central west China.

Home to many of China’s most significant historical and cultural sites, including the famous terra cotta warriors, it’s easy to see why Xi’an is regarded as the country's living “natural history museum”.

Xi’an was the capital for many influential Chinese dynasties over thousands of years and the city still retains many buildings and structures from those times. Among these is the City Wall, which is 12 metres (39 feet) high, 39-46 feet (12-14 meters) wide and 8.7 miles (14 kilometers) long. Rent a bicycle at the South Gate and make your way along the wall at sunset to enjoy beautiful views of the city.

Near the City Wall’s South Gate is the Forest of Stone Steles Museum where you can examine intricate calligraphy carved into stone tablets. While in the area, visit the Great Mosque and the Bell Tower and the Drum Tower.

See other artefacts from China’s dynasties at the Shaanxi History Museum. Its collections include stone tools and weapons, jade wine glasses and belts, chinaware and coins. Note that very little information is in English, so it’s worth getting an audio guide. Combine your museum visit with a trip to the Da Ci’en Temple site, home to the ancient Big Wild Goose Pagoda. Stroll through the north square and admire its gardens, sculptures and fountains.

The treasure Xi’an is probably most famous for, however, is actually located 25 miles (40 kilometers) east of the city at the Emperor Qin Shi Huang's Mausoleum Site Park. Take a bus to the park from Xi’an to see one of the most important archaeological finds of the 20th century: the army of life-size terra cotta warriors and horses. On your way back, stop by the Huaqing Palace and Hot Springs to see what was once a retreat for emperors.

Back in the city, enjoy a meal of dumplings or try the local dish of yangrou paomo, which consists of crumbled unleavened bread in mutton stew.

Reach Xi’an by plane into the international airport located about 19 miles (30 kilometers) northwest of downtown, or by train or long-distance bus from many other major cities in China.

Where to stay in Xi'an

Hilton Xian
Hilton Xian
5 out of 5
199 Dongxin Road, Xi'an, Shaanxi
Free cancellationReserve now, pay when you stay
The price is £74 per night from 1 Jun to 1 Jun
Located in Xi’an City Center, this luxury hotel is within 2 mi (3 km) of Daming Palace National Heritage Park, Xi'an City Walls, and Xi'an Bell Tower. Xijing ...
4.4/5Wonderful! (360 reviews)
Friendly staffs, good location
"Staffs were very friendly, especially Jones Zhao, concierge manager was very professional and kind. Location is good, though neighborhood is a bit oldish and not clean. Overall I was satisfied with this hotel."

Reviewed on 9 Sep 2020

Hilton Xian
Jinmao Hotel Xi’an Drum Tower(Former Citadines Center Xi’an)
Jinmao Hotel Xi’an Drum Tower(Former Citadines Center Xi’an)
4 out of 5
No. 36, Zhuba City, Beilin District, Xi'an, Shaanxi
The price is £56 per night from 25 May to 25 May
Located in Xi’an City Center, this hotel is within a 15-minute walk of Xi'an Bell Tower and Xi'an Bell Tower and Drum Tower. Xi'an City Walls and Drum Tower ...
4.6/5Wonderful! (14 reviews)
Great value and location
"This hotel was quite a nice find. First of all, it’s right in the center of the walled city, which is an excellent place to be located. It’s a short 5 minute walk to the Muslim Quarter, the bar street and the Drum and Bell Towers. I found the decor to be pleasing; they had large lounge areas. The ..."

Reviewed on 5 May 2020

Jinmao Hotel Xi’an Drum Tower(Former Citadines Center Xi’an)
Sheraton Xi'an North City Hotel
Sheraton Xi'an North City Hotel
4.5 out of 5
No. 32 Wei Yang Road, Xi'an, Shaanxi
The price is £55 per night from 16 May to 16 May
Located in Lianhu, this luxury hotel is 0.9 mi (1.5 km) from Daming Palace National Heritage Park and within 3 miles (5 km) of Xi'an City Walls and Xi'an Bell ...
4.4/5Wonderful! (210 reviews)
"Convenient, friendly staff. clean and good breakfast."

Reviewed on 10 Jan 2020

Sheraton Xi'an North City Hotel
Lowest nightly price found within the past 24 hours based on a 1 night stay for 2 adults. Prices and availability subject to change. Additional terms may apply.
Xi'an kivi apartment
Xi'an kivi apartment
3 out of 5
yongning road dahuananmen, Xi'an
Located in Weiyang, this aparthotel is 1.9 mi (3.1 km) from Xi'an Public Library and within 6 miles (10 km) of Xi'an City Walls and Daming Palace National Heritage ...
Xi'an kivi apartment
Bliss Guesthouse
Bliss Guesthouse
2.5 out of 5
#1601,Unit 2,Building 17,Cuihua Rd, Yanta District, Xi'an, Shaanxi
The price is £36 per night from 24 May to 24 May
Located in Qujiang New District, this apartment building is within 1 mile (2 km) of Tang City Wall Ruins Park, Da Ci'en Temple and Giant Wild Goose Pagoda. Tang ...
5/5Exceptional! (1 review)
"1. The owner welcomed me when i reached. 2. She oriented me to the accommodation and the facilities. 3. The unit was well prepared and clean during my check-in. 4. She helped me by transferring funds to my wechat account and refunded me when the transaction failed. 5. The owner came to pass me an ..."

Reviewed on 3 Nov 2018

Bliss Guesthouse
Xi'an Jintang Apartment
Xi'an Jintang Apartment
3.5 out of 5
Fenxiang, South Avenue, Xi'an, Shaanxi
The price is £66 per night from 12 May to 12 May
Located in Xi’an City Center, this apartment building is within a 15-minute walk of Beilin Museum (Stele Forest) and Xi'an Bell Tower. Xi'an City Walls is 2.2 ...
3.7/5Good! (6 reviews)
"Very good trip"

Reviewed on 24 Jul 2019

Xi'an Jintang Apartment
Lowest nightly price found within the past 24 hours based on a 1 night stay for 2 adults. Prices and availability subject to change. Additional terms may apply.

Popular places to visit in Xi'an

Top things to do in Xi'an

Reviews of Xi'an

4.3

Top Destination

5 - Excellent
6
5 - Excellent 33.333333333333336%
4 - Good
11
4 - Good 61.111111111111114%
3 - Okay
1
3 - Okay 5.555555555555555%
2 - Disappointing
0
2 - Disappointing 0%
1 - Terrible
0
1 - Terrible 0%

5/5 - Excellent

Verified traveller

20 Jan 2020

Great place to visit

4/5 - Good

Verified traveller

5 Dec 2019

Easy to reach city by fast train from Beijing.

4/5 - Good

Unanimous

24 Sep 2019

Language is still a problem in Xian. Ordering food and asking the way are still hard time there. Most important is the public transport information which is still not fully affordable. We had a great time with terracotta and the unique places anyway.

5/5 - Excellent

Jmenon

20 Aug 2019

All the tourist attractions are excellence

5/5 - Excellent

CK

13 Jul 2019

Xi’an is a lovely city, especially to walk around at night. Lots of interesting sites to see.

5/5 - Excellent

Verified traveller

12 Jul 2019

A night time walk through the Muslim market is a must!

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