Top ChoiceMarket in Kuqa

Uchar Darvaza Bazaar

The best place in Kuga for Uyghur food is this street at the junction of Tianshan Zhonglu and Youyi Lu. Kebabs, noodles and samsas (baked mutton pies) are all served hot and fresh, though our favourites are the...

Cave in Kuqa

Kizil Thousand Buddha Caves

This is the largest cave-art site in Xinjiang and the earliest major Buddhist cave complex in all of China. In its day, the site would have been comparable to the Mogao Grottoes, although sadly only a handful of...

Ruins in Kuqa

Subashi

Subashi was a Buddhist complex that thrived from the 3rd to 13th centuries. It's less visited than other ancient cities in Xinjiang, but with its starkly beautiful desert setting it's worth the 23km trip...

Mosque in Kuqa

Great Mosque

Kuqa's Great Mosque, rebuilt in 1932 on the site of a 16th-century original, is the second largest in Xīnjiāng. (The largest is the Id Kah Mosque in Kashgar.) It's a wonderfully quiet and meditative space, with a...

Barbecue in Kuqa

Yàlì Náng Kēngròu

It's all about meat at this Han Chinese place in Kuqa's new city, where nevertheless a very Uyghur style of cooking is served up (complete with beer!). Choose your meat platter from the photo menu, or simply...

Hotpot in Kuqa

Xiǎohǎi

Xiǎohǎi makes for a welcome change to the rigours of eating lamb kebab day in, day out, though as no English is spoken you may struggle here without a Chinese speaker. If you're unfamiliar with hot pot, the...

Market in Kuqa

Sunday Bazaar

Every Sunday, a large bazaar is held next to the bridge over the Kuqa River on Renmin Lu, which leads into the Uyghur Old Town – about 2.5km west of the modern town. The market is no rival to Kashgar’s, but you...

Bakery in Kuqa

Xīntián Cafe

This bakery is a great breakfast option, and offers a range of pastries, cakes and sandwiches, as well as good coffee. Upstairs there's a cosy seating area where there are even waffles pizza, chicken wings and...

Mosque in Kuqa

Rasta Mosque

The charmingly painted Rasta Mosque, about 2.5km west of the modern town, draws a throng of worshippers at Friday lunchtime. The rest of the time it's quietly neglected and you're welcome to wander into its...

Noodles in Kuqa

Chóngqìng Lǎotàipó Tāntān Miàn

This cheap and cheerful noodle bar serves up a range of simple dishes in the Chóngqìng style (read: very spicy). It has a pictorial menu, friendly staff and cheap, cold beer, a rarity in these parts.

Museum in Kuqa

Kuche Royal Palace

Located in the old town, 3.5km west of the centre, is the rebuilt Kuche Palace, the residence of the kings of Kuche until the early 20th century. The exhibits tend towards the mundane and are slightly bizarre,...

Tomb in Kuqa

Maulana Ashiddin Mazar

This timeless green-tiled mosque and tomb of a 13th-century Arabian missionary is surrounded by a sea of graves and overflows with worshippers at Friday lunchtime prayers. It’s a 10-minute walk from central Kuga,...