Best of China
From cosmopolitan cities to ancient capitals and surreal rural scenery, China’s stunning diversity offers adventurous visitors to the Middle Kingdom a chance to explore both its modern allure and ancient past. A rapidly changing country, now is the time to discover its cultural and historical diversity—and do it with a bit of style! Our experienced CEO will lead the way and eliminate the hassle so you’re free to explore China’s urban and rural highlights.
Arrival transfer. Visit Tiananmen Square, Forbidden City and the Temple of Heaven. Visit Beijing’s traditional hutongs. Excursion to the Great Wall. Xian Muslim quarter orientation walk. Cycle along the Xi’an city walls. Terracotta Warriors tour and a lunch at the local village where they were uncovered. Li River boat ride. Bicycle ride trough the countryside with village visits. Cooking class and dinner in Yangshuo. Explore Yue Luo Wan rural village. Shanghai orientation walk.
All transport between destinations and to/from included activities.
Walk the Great Wall and cycle along the Xi’an city walls, explore the back-alley streets in Beijing’s traditional hutongs, face the Terracotta Warriors and visit the farming community where they were discovered, cycle the countryside and visit quaint villages, Learn to cook local specialities at a rural cooking school
The information in this trip details document has been compiled with care and is provided in good faith. However it is subject to change, and does not form part of the contract between the client and the operator. The itinerary featured is correct at time of printing. It may differ slightly to the one in the brochure. Occasionally our itineraries change as we make improvements that stem from past travellers, comments and our own research. Sometimes it can be a small change like adding an extra meal along the itinerary. Sometimes the change may result in us altering the tour for the coming year. Ultimately, our goal is to provide you with the most rewarding experience. Please note that our brochure is usually released in November each year. If you have booked from the previous brochure you may find there have been some changes to the itinerary.
VERY IMPORTANT: Please ensure that you print a final copy of your Trip Details to review a couple of days prior to travel, in case there have been changes that affect your plans.
While it is our intention to adhere to the route described below, there is a certain amount of flexibility built into the itinerary and on occasion it may be necessary, or desirable to make alterations. The itinerary is brief, as we never know exactly where our journey will take us. Due to our style of travel and the regions we visit, travel can be unpredictable. The Trip Details document is a general guide to the tour and region and any mention of specific destinations or wildlife is by no means a guarantee that they will be visited or encountered. Aboard expedition trips visits to research stations depend on final permission.
Additionally, any travel times listed are approximations only and subject to vary due to local circumstances.
As we use (sometimes crowded) local transport please note backpacks or duffles are much more suitable than hard suitcases for this style of trip.
2) LUGGAGE WEIGHT RESTRICTIONS
There may be a weight restriction for the internal flight on this tour. Each passenger is allowed to carry one checked bag with a maximum weight of 20 kg (33lbs). Additional bags or excess weight charges may apply. These charges are the responsibility of the passengers.
Group Leader Description
Your G Adventures group trip is accompanied by a G Adventures Chief Experience Officer (CEO) in China. The aim of your CEO is to take the hassle out of your travels and to help you have the best trip possible. They will provide information on the places you are travelling through, offer suggestions for things to do and see, recommend great local eating venues and introduce you to our local friends. G Adventures CEOs are experts in their region with a broad, general knowledge of the countries visited on the trip, including historical, cultural, religious and social aspects. We also use local expert guides where we think more specific knowledge will add to the enjoyment of the places we are visiting- we think it’s the best of both worlds.
Group Size Notes
Max 15, Avg 10.
Eating is a big part of traveling. Travelling with G Adventures you experience the vast array of wonderful food that is available out in the world.
Our groups tend to eat together to enable you to taste a larger variety of dishes and enjoy each others company. Your CEO will be able to suggest favourite restaurants during your trip. Vegetarians will be able to find a range of different foods, although in some areas the choice maybe limited.
For all trips please refer to the meals included and budget information for included meals and meal budgets.
Private bus, plane, boat, train.
All local flights are included in the cost of your tour unless otherwise noted. It is important that we have your passport information at the time of booking in order to process these tickets. Internal flight tickets are issued locally and will be given to you prior to the flight departure.
We believe single travellers should not have to pay more to travel so our group trips are designed for shared accommodation and do not involve a single supplement. Single travellers joining group trips are paired in twin or multi-share accommodation with someone of the same sex for the duration of the trip. Some of our Independent trips are designed differently and single travellers on these itineraries must pay the single trip price.
Comfort hotels (9 nts), guesthouse (1 nt), soft-sleeper train (1 nt).
My Own Room Exceptions
Day 4; overnight train
Please note that we do have an overnight train on this trip. Accommodation will be in Soft-sleeper train cars which have 8-9 compartments in one cabin, 4 beds (two upper beds and two down ones) and a sliding door which can be locked in one compartment.
On day 9 we stay in a simple guesthouse – while lacking in amenities, it more than makes up for it in charm and cultural immersion.
Dong Fang Hotel ( 北京东方饭店 ）
- Wanming Road 宣武区万明路11号
TEL : +86-10-63014466
We recommend printing out this address with Chinese characters to simplify the arrival process; as English is not widely spoken or understood in China.
An arrival transfer is included with all Comfort tours when you arrive on Day 1, or if you arrive up to three days prior to the tour, and provided that you have booked your pre-accommodation through G Adventures in our joining hotel. Due to customer experience and quality considerations, all services related to the tour must be continuous.
Please note that Day 1 is an arrival day and no activities have been planned, so you may arrive at any time. Similarly the last day is a departure day in which no activities are planned.
Your CEO will contact you at the hotel on Day 1 and make sure you are settled comfortably. If you arrive late, they will leave you a message detailing what time and where you should meet the next morning. Your CEO will organize a short meeting soon after arrival, during which you will meet other tour participants and receive information about general and specific aspects of the trip.
When arriving to Beijing International Airport, you have a few choices on how to get to your starting point hotel.
A. Taxi: Follow the signs to the taxi ranks once you have come out of the baggage hall. The ranks are clearly defined, and traffic guards will systematically put you into a taxi. Print out the name of your hotel in Chinese. A taxi ride will take between 34-45 minutes depending on traffic, and should cost between 95-120 Yuan (plus an extra 10 for the tollway).
DO NOT GO WITH ANYONE WHO APPROACHES YOU OFFERING A METERED TAXI WHICH IS PARKED IN THE LOT. THEY WILL RIP YOU OFF.
B. Airport Express Train: Once you have come out of the luggage hall, follow the signs to the underground Airport Express Line. This line takes you to the center of Beijing, to DONGZHIMEN, where you can transfer to Subway line 2, or take a taxi from here to your hotel. The Airport Express ticket costs 25 yuan. It takes about 16 minutes from Terminal 3 of the Airport to Dongzhimen. Train hours are from 6:30am to 10:30pm.
C. If you have paid for an arrival transfer when you booked your trip, our driver will be waiting for you with a G Adventures sign with your name on it. He/She will be waiting for you outside the luggage hall. There most likely will be many signs, so please check carefully for your name.
We don’t expect any problems, and nor should you, but if for any reason you are unable to commence your trip as scheduled, as soon as possible please contact your starting point hotel, requesting that you speak to or leave a message for your CEO (if you are not on a group tour please refer to the emergency contact details provided in this dossier). If you are unable to get in touch with your leader, please refer to our emergency contact details.
If you have not made contact with our transfer representative within 30 minutes of clearing customs and immigration, please contact the Beijing transfer complications number below. As a last resort we recommend that you make your own way to the Starting Point hotel, following the Joining Instructions. Please apply to your travel agent on your return for a refund of the transfer cost if this occurs.
Should you need to contact us during a situation of dire need, it is best to first call either the G Adventures Local Operator (if one is listed below) or our G Adventures Local Office. If for any reason you do not receive an immediate answer, please leave a detailed message and contact information, so they may return your call and assist you as soon as possible.
EMERGENCY CONTACT NUMBERS
G Adventures Local Representative (China) – John Jiang
During Office hours (Weekdays, 9am-5pm Local Time): +86 10 6512-8789
Email address: firstname.lastname@example.org
G Adventures Asia Manager: Julie Fitzgerald
G Adventures Office Bangkok, Thailand
During Office hours (Weekdays, 9am-5pm Local Time)
From outside Thailand: +66 2 381 5574
From within Thailand: 02 381 5574
After hours emergency number
From outside Thailand: +66 87 049 6074
From within Thailand: 087 049 6074
If you are unable for any reason to contact our local office, please call the numbers listed below, which will connect you directly with our 24 hour Sales team, who will happily assist you.
Toll-free, North America only: 1 888 800 4100
Calls from UK: 0344 272 0000
Calls from Germany: 0800 365 1000
Calls from Australia: 1 300 796 618
Calls from New Zealand: 0800 333 307
Outside North America, Australia, New Zealand, Germany and the UK: +1 416 260 0999
What to Take
What you need to bring depends on the trip you have chosen and the countries or regions you are planning to visit. We suggest that you pack as lightly as possible as your are expected to carry your own luggage. As a rule we try not to have to walk more than 15-20 mintues with your bags which is why we recommend keeping the weight of your bags between 10-15kg/22-30lb. Suitcases are not recommended for G Adventures trips! Most travellers carry a backpack or rolling bag of small to medium size (no XXL ones please!) as they need to fit under the beds when travelling on sleeper trains. You will also need a day pack/bag to carry water, cameras and other electronics like ipods and mobile phones.
Do not bring any knives or swords into China (gifts or otherwise). If they do make it into the country, they will not be permitted on trains. If you purchase a knife or sword while travelling elsewhere before arriving in China your best option is to post/mail it home before entering the country as no post/mail companies in China will accept it as a parcel.
-Any required prescription medication
-Camera with extra memory cards and batteries
-Cash, credit and debit cards
-Comfortable walking shoes
-Reusable water bottle
-Feminine hygiene products
-Fleece jacket or warm layer
-Fleece top or long sleeves
-Hiking boots/Sturdy walking shoes
-Reusable water bottle
-Small travel towel and swim wear
-Travel cutlery and mug
-Watch and alarm clock
-Waterproof backpack cover
-Windproof rain gear
-Windproof rain jacket
Laundry facilities are offered by some of our hotels for a charge. There will be times when you may want to or have to do your own laundry so we suggest you bring non-polluting/biodegradable soap.
Please note that visas are the responsibility of the individual traveller. The visa requirements for your trip vary depending on where you are from and where you are going. We keep the following information up to date as much as possible, but rules do change. It is important that you check for yourself with the embassy of each country. Your travel agent can assist. Please, keep in mind that all countries require passports valid for at least 6 months from the moment of departure from the country.
CHINA: all nationalities require a visa to visit China
Most nationalities also need an official Letter Of Invitation (LOI) before they can apply for their Chinese visa.
You can obtain the LOI through our visa support agent in China. The visa support link you need to complete will be sent to you or your travel agent by email when you confirm your booking. You must read the instructions carefully and fill out all the details.
When filling out your Chinese Visa Application form, Please ensure that you list the same details as appear on your LOI when filling out your Chinese Visa Application form.
Passengers traveling to Tibet:
As Tibet continues to be a sensitive area for travel to the Chinese government you must refrain from listing Tibet as one of the places you are going to visit as your application form or your Visa will be denied. We will provide you with the necessary documents to obtain your Chinese Visa, please use the details provided when filling out your Chinese Visa application form.
HOW TO FILL IN CHINA LOI FORM ONLINE:
As Chinese visas are dated specifically for entry and exit, please ensure you enter the correct dates. We also recommend you add on an extra day to both the start/end of your trip so your visa length will cover any unexpected delays. Please, remember to put exactly the same dates when you fill out the application at the Chinese embassy.
Please do not submit the below application until 3 months prior to your entry into China. The details will be forwarded to our local agent in China and you will be emailed your Chinese Invitation Letter (With day by day Itinerary) only once we are within 60 days of the trip start date.
Once you have received your LOI you can apply for your visa by going to the nearest Chinese embassy.Please, remember that it is your responsibility to check whether passport details, name spelling and dates on the LOI are correct.
Detailed Trip Notes
China has emerged as a great tourist destination in the last ten years and is an intriguing and rewarding destination to visit. Developing at a fast rate, travel is becoming easier for foreigners but please be aware that English is still not widely spoken outside the large cities and that accommodation, toilet facilities and some transportation is not yet at the same level as you would expect in developed countries. If you are able to bring with you a lot of patience, a great sense of humour and a willingness to try and interact with the local people, your travel experience wil be greatly enhanced.
Due to Internet restrictions, some popular websites and applications – including social media sites like Facebook and email services like Gmail – may not work in China. If you think these restrictions may affect you, we suggest you do research before your departure in order to be prepared. Bear in mind the availability of websites and apps can change without notice at any time.
Every traveller is different and therefore spending money requirements will vary. Some travellers may drink more than others while other travellers like to purchase more souvenirs than most. Please consider your own spending habits when it comes to allowing for drinks, shopping and tipping. Please also remember the following specific recommendations when planning your trip.
As currency exchange rates in Asia fluctuate often we ask that you refer to the following website for daily exchange rates: www.xe.com.
As of Mar 2014 the exchange rate for China was 1 USD = 6 CNY (Chinese Yuan).
Cash (Chinese Yuan) is the best method of money in China. There are some ATM machines at international airports and major cities that accept Visa and debit cards but these should not be relied on as a source of funds. We recommend the use of cash and traveller’s cheques in major currencies (USD, CAD, GBP, EUR, AUD, HKD) as a backup. Major credit cards are accepted in a few shops (except for AMEX and Diner’s) but they may charge a 2-4% transaction fee.
Departure Tax is included in all International and Domestic tickets in China.
Traditionally in China tipping is not expected and thus there is no need to tip in restaurants and your general interaction with locals; however, tipping is customary – though not compulsory – in the tourism industry and not only shows an expression of satisfaction it may also be of considerable significance to the people who will take care of you during your travels. There are times during the trip where there is opportunity to tip the local guides or drivers we use. You may do this individually, or your CEO may offer to collect the money and tip as a group.
Recommendations for tipping drivers and local guides would range from 1 to 3 USD per person per day depending on the quality and length of the service; ask your CEO for specific recommendations based on the circumstances and culture. A suggestion would be for each group member to contribute anonymously by putting their tip into an envelope. This often works the best and the group as a whole should gather to present the gift to the recipient(s), offering their thanks and showing their appreciation. This method brings the action out into the open, allowing for a friendly and appreciative interaction between the group and the recipient(s).
Also at the end of each trip if you felt your G Adventures CEO did an outstanding job tipping is appreciated. The amount is entirely a personal preference, however as a guideline $5 USD per person per day can be used.
All prices listed are in Chinese Yuan (CNY), per person (unless stated otherwise), and are subject to change as services are provided by third party operators.
▪ Cable car at Great Wall - CNY 60.00
▪ Toboggan at Great Wall - CNY 60.00
▪ Forbidden City - CNY 60.00
▪ Temple of Heaven - CNY 35.00 (Taxi 12 CNY per taxi from your hotel)
▪ Summer Palace – transfer - CNY2 PP by subway (Taxi or Subway)
▪ Summer Palace - CNY 50.00 (30main entry; 10 Cixi Museum; 10 Dragon boat)
▪ Lama Temple - CNY 25.00 (Subway 2 CNY PP)
▪ Legend of Gongfu Beijing - CNY200-680
▪ Acrobatic Performance Beijing - CNY180-880
▪ Beijing Opera Performance - CNY180-680
▪ Hutong Trishaw Cycle Tour - CNY100-150
▪ Bike tour Drum Tower & Houhai - CNY 25.00 (Bike Rental)
▪ Factory 798 Art & Galleries - Free
▪ Tiananmen Square - Free
▪ Beijing Duck - CNY100-150
▪ Hutong Cycle tour - 100-150
▪ Bell & Drum Towers - 35CNY – one way; 50 CNY – round trip
▪ Great Mosque - 25CNY
▪ City Wall Xi’an South Gate - 54CNY (20 CNY/ hr to bike the wall)
▪ Big Wild Goose Pagoda - 50CNY PP (15CNY per taxi – one way)
▪ Shanxi History Museum - Free (20CNY for non-reserved visitors)
▪ Dumpling Banquet Defachang Restaurant - 108CNY
▪ Calligraphy Yangshuo - 60-80CNY (depends on groups size) (40 mins)
▪ Chinese Language lesson - 60-80CNY (depends on groups size)
▪ Gongfu Lesson Yangshuo - 60-80CNY (depends on groups size) (per hour)
▪ Moon Hill - 15CNY
▪ Cooking School & market Tour - 150-180CNY (depending on the meal)
▪ Bike-riding - 25-50CNY (bike rental – depends on the bike)
▪ Kayaking Yangshuo - 220CNY
▪ Li River Cruise Yangshuo - 108-370CNY (transfer not included)
▪ Disney Land Hong Kong - 450HKD
▪ Victoria Peak Peak Tram Hong Kong - 40HKD (round trip)
▪ Light Show HongKong Victoria Harbour - Free
▪ Ngong Ping (360 Cable Car) - 94HKD (one way)
▪ Ocean Park Hong Kong - 185HKD
▪ Star Ferry Hong Kong - 2.8 HKD (one way)
Please note these are examples of the entrance fees charged, this does not include hiring transport to/from the destination (unless stated otherwise)
Please note inoculations may be required for the country visited. It is your responsibility to consult with your travel doctor for up to date medical travel information well before departure.
You should consult your doctor for up-to-date medical travel information well before departure. We recommend that you carry a First Aid kit and hand sanitizers / antibacterial wipes as well as any personal medical requirements. Please be aware that sometimes we are in remote areas and away from medical facilities, and for legal reasons our CEOs are prohibited from administering any type of drug including headache tablets, antibiotics, etc. In Asia pharmacies tend to stock the same western drugs as you get at home but they are usually produced locally so please bring the full drug name with you when trying to purchase a prescription drug. When selecting your trip please carefully read the brochure and itinerary and assess your ability to cope with our style of travel. Please refer to the Physical and Culture Shock ratings for trip specific information. G Adventures reserves the right to exclude any traveller from all or part of a trip without refund if in the reasonable opinion of our CEO they are unable to complete the itinerary without undue risk to themselves and/or the rest of the group.
Safety and Security
Many national governments provide a regularly updated advice service on safety issues involved with international travel. We recommend that you check your government’s advice for their latest travel information before departure. We strongly recommend the use of a neck wallet or money belt while travelling, for the safe keeping of your passport, air tickets, travellers’ cheques, cash and other valuable items. Leave your valuable jewellery at home – you won’t need it while travelling. Many of the hotels we use have safety deposit boxes, which is the most secure way of storing your valuables. A lock is recommended for securing your luggage. When travelling on a group trip, please note that your CEO has the authority to amend or cancel any part of the trip itinerary if it is deemed necessary due to safety concerns. Your CEO will accompany you on all included activities. During your trip you will have some free time to pursue your own interests, relax and take it easy or explore at your leisure. While your CEO will assist you with options available in a given location please note that any optional activities you undertake are not part of your itinerary, and we offer no representations about the safety of the activity or the standard of the operators running them. Please use your own good judgment when selecting an activity in your free time. Although the cities visited on tour are generally safe during the day, there can be risks to wandering throughout any major city at night. It is our recommendation to stay in small groups and to take taxis to and from restaurants, or during night time excursions.
Protests and Demonstrations- Protests and demonstrations, even those that are well intended, have the potential to turn violent with no warning. Counter protests can also turn violent. Action by security forces to disperse demonstrators and protesters may occur at any time. If you are in an area where demonstrators or protesters are gathering, avoid the temptation of staying for a good photo opportunity and leave the area immediately.
Water based activities have an element of danger and excitement built into them. We recommend only participating in water based activities when accompanied by a guide(s). We make every reasonable effort to ensure the fun and adventurous element of any water based activities (in countries with varying degrees of operating standards) have a balanced approach to safety. It is our policy not to allow our CEOs to make arrangements on your behalf for water based activities that are not accompanied by guide(s).
Swimming, including snorkeling, is always at your own risk.
We take all prudent measures in relation to your safety. For ways to further enhance your personal safety while traveling, please visit:
Trip Specific Safety
We strongly recommend the use of a neck wallet or money belt while travelling, for the safe keeping of your passport, air tickets, travellers’ cheques, cash and other valuable items. Leave your valuable jewellery at home – you won’t need it while travelling. Many of the hotels we use have safety deposit boxes which is the most secure way of storing your valuables. A lock is recommended for securing your luggage.
Our small group adventures bring together people of all ages. It is very important you are aware that, as a minimum, an average level of fitness and mobility’ is required to undertake our easiest programs. Travellers must be able to walk without the aid of another person, climb 3-4 flights of stairs, step on and off small boats, and carry their own luggage at a minimum. Travellers with a pre-existing medical condition are required to complete a short medical questionnaire, which must be signed by their physician. This is to ensure that travellers have the necessary fitness and mobility to comfortably complete their chosen trip. While our CEOs work hard to ensure that all our travellers are catered for equally, it is not their responsibility to help individuals who cannot complete the day’s activities unaided. Please refer to the physical ratings in this Trip Details document for more information.
The medical questionnaire can be found online at:
A Couple of Rules
Illegal drugs will not be tolerated on any trips. Possessing or using drugs not only contravenes the laws of the land but also puts the rest of the group at risk. Smoking marijuana and opium is a part of local culture in some parts of the world but is not acceptable for our travellers. Our philosophy of travel is one of respect towards everyone we encounter, and in particular the local people who make the world the special place it is. The exploitation of prostitutes is completely contrary to this philosophy. Our CEOs have the right to expel any member of the group if drugs are found in their possession or if they use prostitutes.
Travel Insurance: Travel insurance is compulsory in order to participate on any of our trips. When travelling on a group trip, you will not be permitted to join the group until evidence of travel insurance has been sighted by your CEO, who will take note of your insurance details. When selecting a travel insurance policy please bear in mind that all clients must have medical coverage and that we require a minimum coverage of USD 200,000 for repatriation and emergency rescue. We strongly recommend that the policy also covers personal liability, cancellation, curtailment and loss of luggage and personal effects. If you have credit card insurance we require proof of purchase of the trip (a receipt of credit card statement) with a credit card in your name. Contact your bank for details of their participating insurer, the level of coverage and emergency contact telephone number.
Planeterra-The G Adventures Foundation
Through our commitment to responsible tourism we have developed the Planeterra Foundation, a non-profit organization dedicated to making a positive difference in the lives of people and communities around the world through support of international charities, local organizations and community projects in the places that we visit on our tours. G Adventures matches all individual donations and pays all administration costs, which means that 100% of each donation is doubled and goes directly to support our projects. For more information about Planeterra and the projects we support, or to make a donation, please visit www.planeterra.org
Planeterra Dollar-A-Day Program
Our Dollar-A-Day Program provides travellers with the opportunity to help us give back to the people and places visited on our tours by donating one dollar per day for the duration of their tour. 100% of these proceeds will go directly to support our G Adventures for Good projects.
To participate in this program please indicate at the time of booking that you would like to participate in G Adventures’ Dollar-A-Day program, either by clicking the check box online, or by advising your G Adventures specialist or travel agent. (Note: Donation will be charged in the currency of your booking)
In Asia the dress standard is more conservative than it is back home. When packing try to pick loose, lightweight, long clothing that will keep you cool in the usually hot and humid climate of Asian summers. In predominately Buddhist, Hindu and Muslim countries we ask that you dress respectfully and avoid very short shorts/skirts and singlets/tanktops when visiting temples or mosques or other holy sites.
Travel Forum - The Watering Hole
Be sure to stop by The Watering Hole, our adventure travel forum. If you’re interested in meeting others booked on your upcoming trip, check out the Departure Lounge section of our forum and introduce yourself. Otherwise, just drop in at anytime to share some travel tips, ask questions, meet other travellers and quench your thirst for travel. Our forum is located at wateringhole.gadventures.com.
English-speaking Chief Experience Officer (CEO) throughout, local guides.
Allow USD325-425 for meals not included.
11 breakfasts, 1 lunch, 3 dinners
PRODUCT_LINE: ACBC, ID: 22999
Terms, conditions and restrictions apply; pricing, availability, and other details subject to change and/ or apply to US or Canadian residents. Please confirm details and booking information with your travel advisor.
Day 1 Beijing (1D)
Arrive at any time, arrival transfer included. Enjoy a first taste of Chinese cuisine with a Beijing duck welcome dinner.
Arrival Day and Welcome Meeting
Day 2 Beijing (1B)
One of the greatest structures ever built, the Great Wall was constructed in stages over 2,000 years. This massive structure stretches 6,000km (3,728 mi) westwards from the sea to western China. The section we visit is called Mutianyu and is one of the best preserved Ming Dynasty sections reachable from Beijing. Arriving at the wall, we’ll be able to walk up and explore a stretch by foot while taking in the stunning views as it winds along the mountain ridges.
Great Wall Mutianyu visit
Private Vehicle (2.00-4.00 hours)
Day 3 Beijing (1B)
Today we delve into the history of Beijing, visiting the dramatic Forbidden City and the immense Tiananmen Square. Hear the tales of the emperors and their concubines, a long crafted culture and rich tradition. Witness how ancient Chinese customs are still valued today, yet are blended with the modern technology and western influences. Visit the Temple of Heaven and its surrounding grounds, which offer a chance to see locals whiling the hours away, practicing water calligraphy and Tai Chi, playing cards, and walking pet crickets, with the colorful Temple of Heaven in the background. Also, take a walking tour featuring some of Beijing’s traditional alleyways and backstreets known as hutongs.
Please note that the timing of included activities can change and will be spread out over the course of days 2-4.
Tiananmen Square Guided Tour
Temple of Heaven Visit
Day 4 Beijing/Xi’an (1B)
Later, we travel by overnight train to Xi’an in soft sleeper compartments.
Overnight train (beds) (12.00-14.00 hours)
Day 5 Xi’an (1B)
Arrive in the ancient Chinese capital and traditional silk road terminus, Xi’an, in the morning; we will be met and transferred to our hotel. After settling in, gather for an a bike ride along the ancient city walls (the inner city is surrounded by 14km (9 mi) of ancient city walls).
In the evening, explore the Muslim Quarter, with its multicultural feel, shopping lanes, and street-side food stalls selling nan, kebabs, and a fine array of sweets. Opt to try some of the best street food in China – the spicy beef and lamb kebabs are always a favourite.
Cycling Xi’an City Walls
Muslim Quarter Orientation Walk
Day 6 Xi’an (1B, 1L)
Visit the famous archaeological wonder of the Terracotta Warriors, built over 2,000 years ago to protect the tomb of Emperor Qin Shi Huang. Opt to enjoy a Tang Dynasty dinner banquet in the evening.
Terracotta Warriors Visit
Village visit and lunch
Day 7 Xi’an/Yueluowan Village (1B, 1D)
Fly to Guilin and continue on to a traditional Chinese village and immerse yourself in the local culture with an overnight stay in a small guesthouse.
Our accommodation tonight is simple but the hospitality, stunning setting and cultural immersion more than make up for a lack of amenities.
Plane (1.75-2.00 hours)
Private Vehicle (1.75-2.00 hours, 75km)
Day 8 Yueluowan Village/Yangshuo (1B)
Travel to China’s lush southwest to experience the rural culture and unique limestone karst scenery of the Yangshuo area.
Arriving into Yangshuo town, there will be opportunity to wander the shop and cafe lined streets or relax with a drink before enjoying an evening sunset cruise on the world famous Li River.
Li River Cruise
Walking (4.00-5.00 hours)
Day 9 Yangshuo (1B, 1D)
Embark on a day of easy cycling and rural discovery, venturing from Yangshuo out into the Dragon River area to take in the montage of rural scenes. Later, try preparing local cuisine at a cooking school and enjoy the results for dinner.
Return to Yangshuo; with an evening free, you may choose to relax or experience some of Yangshuo’s vibrant nightlife.
Day 10 Yangshuo/Shanghai (1B)
In a great day of contrasts, awake overlooking the rural countryside and finish the day in the heart of China’s bustling metropolis, Shanghai.
Cosmopolitan Shanghai is a mesmerizing array of old and new, from the 19th century Asian infused Victorian and early 20th century Art Deco architecture, to the bold 21st century futuristic skyline additions.
Orientation Walk of the Bund
Private van transfer to airport and private bus from airport to hotel.
Plane (2.00 hour(s))
Day 11 Shanghai (1B)
Enjoy free time to explore on your own. Opt to visit Yuyuan Gardens or the Shanghai Museum.
Day 12 Shanghai (1B)
Depart at any time.