Famous for being the home of the Terracotta Warriors, Xi’an is a growing city which was once the terminus of the Silk Road. This is a great place to experience Chinese culture and food at cheap prices.
A trip to see the Terracotta Warriors is a must whilst in Xi’an, as is the Tomb of Emperor Jingdi and the Muslim quarter. Find some time to visit the Pagodas and museums of the city and taste the delicious street food.
Hostel/Budget rates – ¥30 – ¥60 for dorm beds, ¥70 – ¥100 for private rooms
Midrange Hotel rates – ¥100 – ¥250 for private rooms in a nice hotel.
Luxury Hotel rates – ¥750 + for luxury and spacious rooms that go the extra mile.
Transport – trains cost ¥2 – ¥4 depending on distance, whilst taxis start at ¥6 and air-conditioned buses charge ¥2.
Average cost of food – A lunchtime menu in the business district will set you back ¥40 whilst a basic dinner out for two in a pub will cost around ¥85. Nicer restaurants with wine and dessert will cost around ¥250+ whilst street food snacks start around ¥2.
Where to stay
Hostel/Budget – HanTang Inn Hostel can be found in a great location with a warm friendly atmosphere, we really enjoyed staying here whilst in Xi’an. Dorms start at ¥52 and double private rooms at ¥94. Another top rated hostel is the Ancient City with dorms starting at ¥46 and private rooms at ¥90. This hostel is close to a subway and offers traditional Chinese decor.
Midrange – Offering Deluxe apartments at ¥230, Mr Vinegar Service Apartment is a great choice for those wishing for the extra comfort and space. Some prefer the modern and colourful decor of the Atour Hotel Datang Furong Garden Branch, with rooms starting at ¥250.
Top End – Those looking for luxury and a hot tub in their room should check out the Wyndham Grand Xian South with rooms starting at ¥1000. Created on the grandest of scales, The Sofitel Legend People’S Grand Hotel is a great choice for those wanting to splash the cash. You may forget you are even in China with this resort and I may have to spend a night here on my next visit. Rooms start at ¥1900.
How to get there
Fly – Flights from all major airports fly into Xi’an Xianyang Airport, with most including a stop-over in Shanghai, Hong Kong or Beijing. Domestic flights are available and regular, with cheap flights available from China Southern airline. From the airport, you can catch a shuttle bus which runs between 6am to 8pm from the airport to Melody hotel, taking an hour to get to this central location. From here you can either walk or get a taxi to your hotel. Taxi’s into the city centre will cost upwards of ¥100 on the meter.
Bus – The long distance bus station can be found opposite the Xi’an Train station, with buses travelling to and from; Luoyang, Pingyao, Zhengzhou, Hancheng, Hua Shan and Yan’an.
Train – From Xi’ans north train station you can find a high-speed bullet train to Beijing West take just 5 and half hours, as well as other destinations including Luoyang and Wuhan. Normal speed trains can also take you to other popular destinations around China whilst offering hard and soft sleeper tickets.
Public buses will take you to all major sights but be careful of your possessions on busy buses. Taxis can be flagged and start at ¥6 whilst the Xi’an metro system currently has 3 lines and costs between ¥2 – ¥4 depending on distance.