Xi'an, China

Xi'an Travel Blog

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We woke up early and headed off towards the bus station to find the bus that would take us to the Terracotta Warriors. We had been told the previous night by a really nice guy, that the public bus, number 906, is only 7RMB each and takes you right to the door.

We arrived at the bus station and spent ages wandering around searching for the bus, which we finally found tucked away behind the walls next to the train station. You pay when the bus starts moving so we sat there for about 10 minutes before we left. Fab had bought some noodles from a street vendor and was tucking into them, much to the amusement of the hawker who had hopped aboard and was selling drinks on the bus.

The journey to the warriors took around an hour and along the way we stopped at a museum and a hot spring.

Don’t get off the bus here - wait until you pull into a huge car park - only this is the entrance to the warriors. Many organised tours charge around 180RMB for entrance and transportation (which is a complete rip off), and you end up stopping at these two places en route, which is not what you paid to see and takes away time from your eventual location.

We arrived at the warriors and found our way to the ticket booth. Each ticket costs 90RMB, our most expensive entrance fee so far. There weren’t many people around, so afte we’d entered through the barriers and avoided the millions of staff offering us English language guide around the site, we were faced with the choice of taking a golf cart or a long winding path to the warriors.

Another couple were taking the path, so we decided to follow them. We ambled through a man-made nature reserve type place, which a wide variety of trees, shrubs and bushes (all with their name in Latin and Chinese pinned to them or nearby) along side the white brick road we were following.

Finally we reached the main pit where the warriors were. We entered the building, which looks like an airplane hangar and were faced with hundreds of warrior statues. It was quite amazing to see them all.

As we moved around the pit, we saw the variety of figures, the horses and the weaponry, expertly carved from the rock of Mt Lishan nearby and transported to the tomb of Emperor Qin Shi Huang to protect him in his next life.

There are three pits open to the public, and they are still excavating to this day.

Pit number 1 is the most famous and it has the most to see, but pits 2 and 3 offer other views of the warriors; those that are broken and some which have been completely removed and displayed in perspex boxes for closer inspection.

After spending a good couple of hours wandering around we headed back to the car park to find a bus to take us back to Xi’an. We couldn’t find the 906 bus,but a man was shouting ‘Xi’an, Xi’an’ from his bus, so we hopped on there. It was the same price as the other bus, but we were confused when, with just us on the bus, we pulled away and started heading away. (In China, you will wait until a bus is almost full before going anywhere). Panic mode set in, thinking, “are these guys going to drop us in the middle of nowhere and demand more money to continue on?” and so on. About 10 minutes into the journey, we pulled up alongside a local woman waiting for the bus and she got on too. As the bus started filling up we got more and  more relaxed, thinking “they wouldn’t try that trick with an entire bus load of people”. Paranoid moment over, we reached our destination.

We grabbed a bite for dinner and headed back to our hostel where we relaxed for the rest of the evening.

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photo by: Deats