Muslim District Tour

Muslim District Tour


Brilliant cooks, rousing preachers, fearsome warriors, and tireless traders – Muslims have lived here in Xi’an for a thousand and three hundred years. First coming when Xi’an was the ancient capital, and a melting pot of cultures at the end of the Silk Road, they’ve been here ever since. They’ve lived through the rise and falls of empires, imperial favour and dazzling success, bloody rebellions and gruesome repression, but are still here to cook, preach, and trade today.

Now the Muslim District is a hive of activity, buzzing with Hui and Uyghurs hammering peanut toffee, hawking colourful costumes, shadow puppets, and skewered meat, and selling the local delicacies of noodles as thick as belts, the original Chinese burger, and delicious freshly baked breads. It’s a taste of the hustling, bustling Silk Road capital that’s lived on through the ages.

Our unique tour takes in a local mosque, the local park, and homes and streets of the real people of Xi’an’s Muslim population – not just the bits that tourists normally see. You’ll understand the history, and the real lives and culture of the Muslim District’s residents. You’ll also get to appreciate the hustle and bustle of the main street, its throbbing commerce, and its delicious snacks. Not only this, but you’ll get to see a traditional Chinese mansion, watch a traditional puppet performance with the Monkey King and a beautiful girl who’s not what she seems, and learn why for almost a year this mansion became the centre of the Chinese world…

Call us on (0086) 138 1777 0229 or email us on info@newmantours to book your Muslim District Tour today.

Watching shadow puppet performance in Muslim District
Find out how the death of a concubine lead to the birth of modern shadow puppetry. 


  • Meet your guide outside exit B of Bei Da Jie Metro Station (在北大街地铁站B口外面见面).
  • Visit a traditional Chinese pharmacy, learn what goods criss-crossed the Silk Road, the links between Chinese and Muslim medicine, and what on earth a ‘wolf berry’ is, why it’s a Muslim specialty, and why it’s maybe a good idea to start eating more of it…
  • Learn about Chinese Muslim martial arts at the local exercise park with your guide’s iPad, which famous Chinese leaders had Muslim bodyguards, and why one of the most feared Muslim warlords of the last century combined ferocious martial arts and modern warfare, as well as an addiction to ice cream.
  • Cross a traditional zig-zagging Chinese bridge and learn why doing so might have saved us from evil spirits, learn about the symbolism of ancient Chinese rockeries and then check out the local rollerbladers showing off their skills.
  • Learn about China’s most famous Muslim – the original globe-trotter who brought all sorts of wonders back to China. Learn how he completed his ballsy adventures despite an unfortunate handicap, and learn the clever way the Emperor’s Public Relations advisers dealt with his seasick giraffe…
  • Visit the site of a local mosque, where Muslim men come to pray. See the mosque where Chinese Muslim women also go to pray, learn why the position of women in Chinese Muslim society is relatively good. Learn how to say ‘hello’ like a local Hui and why other Muslims might find it rather strange…
  • See if you can write the most complicated character in Chinese, and learn why it was a marketing stroke of genius.
  • See the house where Dowager-Empress Cixi stayed in Xi’an during the Boxer Rebellion. Hear what she did when her cooks treated her to local food, see where she slept and learn why her bed would have been so comfortable, and why the mansion’s well might have brought back some bad memories for her…
  • See the room where the most important members of the family lived, spot all the symbols which they hoped would give them wealth and long life, and learn what fate the gods have in store for you…
  • Guests on the Select Muslim District Tour will also get to sample a range of Chinese teas free of charge and will also hear the legend that explains how they can enhance your meditation skills.
  • See a famous story from the adventure novel ‘Journey To The West’ (also known as the ‘Monkey King’) featuring a devious skeleton, the cunning Monkey King, a dimwitted pig-man, Xi’an’s most famous monk, and a pretty young girl who isn’t what seems performed in a traditional shadow puppet play.
  • Guests on the Select Muslim District will also be introduced to further street food specialties including Pitta Bread Soaked In Lamb Soup, Juicy Beef Sandwich, and Steamed Sticky Rice With A Rose Jam.

Getting there

The Standard Meeting Point for Public, Private & Select Muslim District Tours is outside exit B of Bei Da Jie Metro Station (在北大街地铁站B口外面见面).


(All prices in Chinese Renminbi per guest)

(2 hours)
(2.5 hours)
1 guest 980 1320
2 guests 520 700
3 guests 360 490
4 or more guests 290 390

Tour Types

Private Tours can be scheduled for your group at any time you like.
VIP Tours are led by Newman Tours’ most experienced guides, and guarantee the provision of an iPad to enhance the content of your tour. They can start at any time you want, and feature exclusive content described in red italics under the Tour Schedule section of this page.
Terms & Conditions can be viewed here.

Find out why the “trouser-belt noodle” is a local favorite.

TripAdvisor Reviews

Media Reviews

“Newman Tours’ guides are not only highly knowledgeable about the city and its past, but also have the charisma to bring the incredible stories of the area to life.”
Alice Shaman, Shanghai Talk

“Plenty of fascinating historical information”
John Sunyer, Time Out

Journey to the West shadow puppets
Can you spot the monkey king shadow puppet?

Muslim District Follow Up

Guests on the Muslim District Tour will receive a follow up email featuring informative and entertaining links including the following:

  • Muslim District history links that further explore the way in which the Muslim Quarter evolved.
  • Chinese Muslim martial arts links that will enable you to understand how the tradition developed.

Included Ticket Information

Dates  1st March to 30thNovember  1st December to February 28th
Entry Fee for mosque (RMB) 25 15
Opening Hours 08:00 – 19:00 08:00 – 19:00