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Essential China

(5 Reviews)
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From$3,724
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16 Days
Availability : April 2019 thru October 2020
Beijing
Hong Kong
Min Age : 12
Max People : 16
Tour Details

This 16 days’ tour covers the most well-known places of China, including Beijing, Shanghai, Xi’an, Chengdu, Leshan, Emeishan, Chongqing, Yichang, Liuzhou Yangshuo and Hong Kong.

Price Includes

  • Accommodation: Hotels, Sleeper train, Cruise
  • Transport: Private Bus, Train, Cruise
  • Meals: 13 Breakfasts, 7 Lunches, 11 Dinners
  • Arrival Transfer Rates
Itinerary

Day 1Beijing Nihao! Welcome to China!(D)

Day 1 Beijing Nihao! Welcome to China!(D)
Nihao! Welcome to Beijing, the Capital of China. Upon arrival at the airport, private transfer to your hotel located in the city center.Our local guide will go over details about your trip, followed by an orientation walk around the city near your hotel. At the end of the day, you’ll enjoy a delicious dinner at a local restaurant.
Rest up and get prepared for an exciting trip ahead!

Accommodation:
• Hotel (1 night)
Included activities:
• Private airport transfer on group basis
• Group meeting
Meals Included:
• Dinner

Day 2Beijing See the Summer Palace and the Great Wall of China(B,D)

This morning, we’ll first head to the Summer Palace, an immense park, with Chinese traditional architecture and arts. It was built during the Qing Dynasty and served as a royal garden. You’ll stroll across the grounds and admire the quintessence of the Chinese classical landscape gardening.
Then, take a private bus to visit the Great Wall’s Mutianyu Section, one of the best-preserved parts of the Great Wall with 22 towers winding along the mountain ridges.Spend quality time exploring and learning the history of the Great Wall of China as well as enjoy a view at Huairou county, a suburban area of Beijing. A great idea is to bring a picnic lunch which you can enjoy on top of the wall during a break.We will then drive back to downtown Beijing in the late afternoon. End your exciting first day with a delicious meal!
Accommodation:
• Hotel (1 night)
Included activities:
• Great wall Mutianyu section
• Summer Palace
Meals Included:
•Breakfast, Dinner

Day 3Beijing Visit Tiananmen Square and the Forbidden City(B,D)

Today, we’ll explore the famous sights of Beijing. There will be a lot of walking today, as well as using the subway to get around. Your local guide will take care of you all along the way.
After breakfast, we will take the metro to Tiananmen Square, one of the world’s largest public squares, home to the Monument of the People’s Heroes and the Great Hall of the People.
Then enter the Forbidden City, a ceremonial and political center of the Chinese government for more than 500 years. It is listed by UNESCO as the most extensive collection of preserved ancient wooden structures in the world.After the Forbidden City, we will stroll in the alleys formed by lines of traditional courtyards known as Hutong and experience the local lifestyle of Old Beijing.
Tonight we will enjoy the famous Beijing Duck dinner.

Accommodation:
• Hotel (1 night)
Included activities:
• Tian’an men Square
• Forbidden City
• Hutong walking
Meals Included:
• Breakfast, Dinner

Day 4Shanghai Explore Cosmopolitan Shanghai(B,D)

Today we will travel to Shanghai, an about five-hour journey by high-speed train. Upon arrival, enjoy a private transfer to your lovely hotel. Later, you’ll join your tour for a historical Shanghai walking tour. We will explore the narrow streets (Langtang) of Shanghai and experience the local’s daily life. At the Bund, you can get a taste of 1920s Shanghai. Later, you’ll walk along Huangpu River and you will get a feeling of this city with a long history.

Accommodation:
• Hotel (1 night)
Included activities:
• Walking along the Bund
Meals Included:
• Breakfast, Dinner

Day 5Shanghai Discover the City God's Temple(B)

Today, we will visit the City God’s Temple area, a folk temple neighboring Yuyuan Garden. The City God Temple in Shanghai originated as the Jinshan God Temple, dedicated to the spirit of Jinshan, or “Gold Mountain,” an island off the coast of Shanghai. It was converted into a City God Temple in
1403, during the Yongle era of the Ming dynasty.Its popularity turns the surrounding area into a large pedestrian area that hosts an array of shops, restaurants, tea houses, as well as annual temple fair events. The time spent here will be mostly leisure and you are free to explore on your own.
Later on, we’ll board an evening overnight soft sleeper train to Xi’an.

Accommodation:
• Over night soft sleeper train (1 night)
Included activities:
• Yuyuan Garden
• City God’s Temple
Meals Included:
• Breakfast

Day 6 Xi'an Marvel at the Terracotta Warriors in Xi'an(L)

Upon arrival in Xi’an, you’ll take a private bus to your hotel before we head out to see the Terracotta Warriors. This morning, you’ll learn all about this incredible archaeological find, discovered in 1976 by farmers digging a well, after being buried for 2,000 years.
Three main pits are open for you to view, where just under 2,000 of the 6,000 warriors – each individually sculpted from clay, each wearing a different costume, height, and even facial expressions – stand in battle formation. The scale is incredibly impressive.
Afterwards, we will enjoy lunch in a local village. In the afternoon, we will take a walk around the
Muslim quarter, lively markets, and the Bell & Drum Towers.

Accommodation:
• Hotel (1 night)
Included activities:
• Terracotta Warriors
• Muslim quarter
Meals Included:
• Lunch

Day 7Chengdu Journey to Chengdu and Visiting Jinli Street(B,D)

After breakfast, take a private transfer to Xi’an North Station to take a fast train to Chengdu. Chengdu is the capital city of the Sichuan province and one of the three most populous cities in western China.Upon arrival, take a city walking tour around Chengdu and get a real insider’s experience of local people’s life and city culture.We will also visit Kuanzhai Alley, which is famous for its historic atmosphere, bustling businesses and most of all, its local snacks.Our last stop is at the People’s Park where you will relax with a cup of green tea in an old tea house.

Accommodation:
• Hotel
Included activities:
• Kuanzhai Alley
• People’s Park
Meals Included:
• Breakfast, Dinner

Day 8 Chengdu Giant Pandas and a Giant Buddha(B,L,D)

After breakfast, visit the Giant Panda Breeding Research Base, where you’re able to witness the conservation efforts being made to save this endearing endangered species. There are only around
1,000 pandas left in the world, and 80 % of them are found in the mountains in Sichuan.
The pandas have over 600 acres of parkland to live in, and you can get up close and learn more about these majestic creatures. Watch them playing, napping, and munching bamboo.
Later, you’ll take a private transfer to Leshan, and visit the Giant Buddha. The stone sculpture faces Mount Emei, with rivers flowing below its feet. It is the largest and tallest stone Buddha statue in the world, and it is by far the tallest pre-modern statue in the world.
After the Buddha, head to Mount Emei by private van. The mountain is beautiful and you’ll enjoy an overnight at a peaceful monastery there.

Accommodation:
• Hotel (1 night)
Included activities:
• Giant Panda Breeding Research Base
• Leshan Giant Buddha
Meals Included:
• Breakfast, Lunch,Dinner

Day 9 Emeishan Venture to the Golden Summit and Huazang Temple(B, D)

Take the tour bus to the top of Leidongping Station at 2400 meters elevation. Keep on climbing along a mountain track, while you’ll hopefully luck to watch some wild monkeys. If the hike is not interesting for you, you can also take an optional cable car ride to the top.
You’ll reach the Golden Summit with 3077 meters. Enjoy sightseeing at the Golden Summit, visit the Huazang Temple, enjoy the magnificent view of clouds, mountains, and forests. The views from up there will surely astound you! After the tour, the sightseeing bus will take you all the way down to the foot of the mountain.

Accommodation:
• Hotel (1 night)
Included activities:
• Entrance fee of Emei Mountain
• Round trip for the public tour bus
Meals Included:
• Breakfast, Dinner

Day 10 Chongqing Peaceful Cruise on the Yangtze River(B,L,D)

After breakfast, take a short walk around in Emeishan. In the late morning, trek up to Fuhu Temple, another ancient Buddhist establishment. Your expert guide will provide you with interesting details. Afterward, you will head to Hongchunping. From there, you’ll enjoy a private transfer to Mt. Emei train station for the bullet train to Chongqing via Chengdu.
Upon arrival, you’ll take a private bus to the pier and board a deluxe Yangtze River Cruise. This cruise will be an amazing way to see the beautiful scenery nearby as well as keep a lookout for wildlife. The cruise will also be an amazing way to spend the golden hour and sunset. Tonight you’ll be sleeping on board.

Accommodation:
• Yangtze River Cruise
Included activities:
• Emei Mountain
• Boarding on the Yangtze River Cruise
Meals Included:
• Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 11 Yangtze River Be Spooked As You Discover Chinese Ghost Culture(B,L,D)

Wake up on the boat and look out of your window to see wonderful China passing by. You’ll pass through the Three Gorges, an incredible natural wonder to see. Take a short excursion to Fengdu which received its reputation as the “Ghost City” during the Eastern Han Dynasty. Today we could take a walk around Fengdu, visit temples and get a taste of Chinese Ghost Culture. Don’t be afraid!In the evening, enjoy a dynasties culture show by Chinese minorities. This performance will entertain you as well as teach you a lot about some of the lesser-known ethnic groups within the country.Return back to the ship for another peaceful night on board.

Accommodation:
• Hotel (1 night)
Included activities:
• Yangtze River cruise
• One short excursion included
Meals Included:
• Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 12 (B, L, D)Yangtze River Sail Through the Qutang and Wu Gorges(B,L,D)

Today the cruise will sail through the Qutang and the Wu Gorge, two of the Three Gorges of the Yangtze River, which are well-known for their scenery classified the highest level by Chinese National Tourism Administration.Take an excursion to the Shennv Valley (the Goddess Stream) where you will have a breathtaking view of thousands of cliffs hanging in the sky. You’ll witness hundreds of meters blue peaks and a slight line opened among groups of rocks blocking the sky. You will understand why it is named like this. In the evening, enjoy the captain’s farewell banquet. Say a toast to the wonderful crew and take in the river views for one last time.

Accommodation:
• Hotel (1 night)
Included activities:
• Yangtze River
• One short excursion included
Meals Included:
• Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 13 Yichang Marvel at the Three Gorges Dam(B,L)

Early in the morning, arrive at Huang Ling Miao and visit the Three Gorges Dam, the most significant hydro-electric project in the world, completed in 2009. The Three Gorges Project brings benefits in all aspects of flood control, power generation, tourism, ecological protection, South-North water transfer, and irrigation. It also had a world record in 2014 for its enormous amount of power generated.
Our Yangtze river journey will end at the Yichang Pier where we will be picked up and transferred to the Yichang train station and take an overnight train to Liuzhou.

Accommodation:
• Overnight soft sleeper train
Included activities:
• Three Gorges Dam
Meals Included:
• Breakfast, Lunch

Day 14 Yangshuo Explore the Resort Town of Yangshuo(D)

You’ll arrive in Liuzhou in the morning and take a private bus transfer to Yangshuo, a rural resort town in southern China’s Guangxi region.Yangshuo is known for its dramatic karst mountain landscape, and outdoor recreation. Your hotel chec- in will be followed by an orientation walk around West Street. Your guide will be happy to show you his or her favorite parts of the city.Later on, you’ll enjoy a delicious local meal at one of the best restaurants in town where you can taste some of the most famous regional delicacies.

Accommodation:
• Hotel (1 night)
Included activities:
• Orientation walk around West Street
Meals Included:
• Dinner

Day 15 Yangshuo Cycling Tour of Magical Yangshuo(B,L)

Today we will head out of town on bikes to cycle through the surrounding countryside, and gain an insight into Chinese rural life on a ride, where each turn in the road takes you to another picture-postcard location.
We will reach Moon Hill, famous for its impressive semicircular arch formation and the remains of what was once a large cave. Paved steps lead to the arch and those who feel more adventurous, you can ascend to the summit via a steep and rough path for which you will be rewarded with spectacular vistas.
Stop for lunch at the house of our local friends and savor a tasty meal made from locally grown produce. Then, ride back to town and enjoy an evening at your leisure.

Accommodation:
• Hotel (1 night)
Included activities:
• Cycling around the countryside
• Moon Hill
Meals Included:
• Breakfast, Lunch

Day 16 (B)Hong Kong We Hope You Had a Wonderful Trip!(B)

This morning you will join your guide on a bamboo rafting tour around the countryside. Be ready to feel some adrenaline! Then we will transfer to Guilin North Station to board the fast train to West Kowloon Station in Hong Kong, from where you can easily connect with the train to Hong Kong Airport.Have a safe trip home! We hope you enjoyed your trip to incredible China and have made memories to last you a lifetime!

Included activities:
• Bamboo rafting
Meals Included:
• Breakfast

Map
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5 Reviews
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Lucinda

Couple Traveller

I loved it! Despite the tour lasting only three weeks I felt like I got a real taste of China – each new place we visited was so different from the last. I felt that we did a lot and saw a lot whilst having the time to take it all in. The tour, in my opinion, also had the perfect balance of organised group activities and free time. The specific group of people I travelled with greatly contributed to my enjoyment- I’ve made some great friends as a result of this trip, something that I didn’t necessarily expect beforehand! All in all this trip was an incredibly rich and unforgettable experience!

July 25, 2018

Sophie

Family Traveller

I had a FANTASTIC tour around China which was mainly due to our lovely tour guide Leah who was fun, kind, professional and enthusiastic at all times. Leah surpassed all of my needs and wants when visiting the China. We saw fantastic sights in China and Leah was always extremely enthusiastic about each one despite having probably seen them 100 times before our tour! She also made it possible to do other things we wanted to do, for example, some of the group tried dog, snake and bamboo rat at a local restaurant in Guilin as they really wanted to and organised the whole thing for them! The whole tour was brilliant and after telling my mum and sister and showing them my pictures they are planning on coming back to China with me and hopefully we will be able to have her as our tour guide again!

February 20, 2018

Benjamin

Group Traveller

The tour is very well-organised and we saw a lot of things that most people who visit China would not see.

The itinerary was very busy with a lot of activities scheduled which I enjoyed as I like to see and do a lot when I go travelling. Jeannette, our guide was great in informing us about what activities we would be doing on each day, as well as little things such as answering questions for us, helping to order food for us, recommending places for us to eat and visit and also helping us to carry our luggage. The trip would not have been half as good without her.

September 16, 2017

Caroline

Solo Traveller

Essential China was an excellent tour as a great gateway to see the highlights of China, to experience the variety of the regions, and see differences of the countryside and the cities. The itinerary worked well, and despite the lengthy travel times I found we had enough time to rest and yet see each new place. The monastery stay was a highlight. It is a wonderful experience to stay in a relaxing place, especially after the back to back stays in cities. The time in the cities was excellent and interesting but equally so was the time in the countryside, an additional countryside stay with fresh air and views of rural life between Shanghai and Xian would have been welcome as a nice to have.

August 16, 2017

Ivy

Solo Traveller

Great trip! I like the fact that everything is organised for you. You turn up on day 1 and then simply follow the itinerary. Our guide Leah was an excellent tour guide. She was the most organized tour guide I have ever had. She went above and beyond and helped people go to hospitals, post offices, stores, etc. She even helped serve us our meals if the restaurants were busy so we didn’t have to spend so much time waiting.

May 18, 2017