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On The Go Tours / China / Tours / Chinese Checkers 11 Days

Chinese Checkers

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11 days  |  Beijing to Shanghai  |  from USD $2,529  |   Guaranteed Departure 

A complete checker board of history, culture, sights & experiences. Jump from old Beijing and the expansive Great Wall to the mammoth carved statues at Longman's Caves, Suzhou - known as little Venice and 21st century Shanghai

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Prices & Dates
Hotels
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Day 1

Saturday. Huan ying, welcome to China and the start of your holiday! Airport arrival transfer and hotel check in. The remainder of the day offers free time.
Overnight: Beijing

Day 2

Today, we embark on a guided tour of the nation’s capital. Tiananmen Square, a patriotic vision of grandeur and the Forbidden city, the walled city of the former Chinese emperors boasting stunning temples, courtyards and reception halls. We take an afternoon rickshaw ride navigating the old back lanes and courtyards of Beijing’s Hutongs. This evening, we enjoy an eye boggling Chinese acrobatic performance. Swinging ropes, juggling hoops, spinning plates and human pyramids are just a few tricks these show stoppers pull out followed by a Welcome Dinner of Peking Duck at a city restaurant.
Overnight: Beijing  |  Breakfast, Dinner

Day 3

Today we walk the famous Great Wall of China. Said to be seen from space, the enduring symbol of Chinese civilisation and genius is a prize national treasure. The UNESCO protected Great Wall of China was built as a defensive structure to protect China against marauding invaders from the north. Although the present wall dates mainly from the Ming dynasty, some 20 states and dynasties were involved in its immense construction over a period of 2,000 years and followed different routes and building extensions as required. At one time perhaps nearly 9700km long, the wall was garrisoned by nearly 1 million soldiers and featured over 1,000 fortified passes and 10,000 beacon towers. Today, the now partially ruinous Great Wall stretches some 6700 kms across barren hills, deserts, mountains and plateaus. Today’s visit offers a healthy, if steep and vertiginous walk with breathtaking views of the Chinese countryside.

After taking time to catch our breath we tour a nearby cloisonne workshop demonstrating the ancient Chinese art of combining copper and enamel to make decorative pieces. This evening take an optional Beijing by Night city tour and see some of the capital's monuments illuminated against the night sky (payable locally).
Overnight: Beijing  |  Breakfast, Lunch

Day 4

Beijing - Luoyang. Spend the morning touring the famous Summer Palace on Kunming Lake. This vast complex is replete with lavishly decorated temples, halls and courts, reconstructed in 1902 at the whim of the extravagant Dowager Empress Cixi. We visit the famed Silk Alley markets and drive past the Beijing 2008 Olympic Stadium en route to the train station where we take the late afternoon bullet train to Luoyang. Reaching speeds of up to 305km per hour the journey is an experience in itself!
Overnight: Luoyang  |  Breakfast

Days 5-6

Luoyang - Longman Caves - Xi’an. Today we explore the UNESCO - listed 6th Century Longman Caves etched into the cliffs of the Yi River. The 1300 caves (grottoes) are adorned with 100,000 statues and images of Buddha and his disciples, carved during the Northern Wei Dynasty. Later on we tour the White Horse Temple, the first Buddhist temple in China before having a delicious local dinner. On day 6, we visit the Peony Square to watch ballroom dancing, tai chi and sword fighting. Afterwards we board the new high speed train to Xi'an (journey time approximately 3 hours). Once in Xi'an we visit the Wild Goose Pagoda, Grand Mosque and Muslim quarter. The evening is at leisure.
Overnight: Luoyang (1), Xi'an (1)  |  Breakfast x 2, Dinner x 1

Day 7

Emperor Qin’s Terracotta Warriors are reputed to be the greatest discovery of the 20th century - 7,000 life-sized clay soldiers stand ready for battle. We visit the archaeological site and the workshop where the replica warriors are crafted. Tonight, optional Tang Dynasty Bolt-on, with dinner and performance.
Overnight: Xi'an  |  Breakfast, Lunch

Day 8

Xi’an - Shanghai. Early this morning opt for our panda excursion to the Shaanxi Rare Wildlife Rescue and Breeding Centre a 2 hour drive from Xi’an. Later, we tour take a casual bicycle ride on top of the 9 mile Xi’an City Wall (no need to go the entire way around) perimeter peeking down upon the lively city beneath us. Afterwards we enjoy some free time in the city centre and a delicious hot pot lunch before boarding our train destined for sizzling Shanghai.
Overnight: Sleeper Train  |  Breakfast, Lunch

Day 9

Good morning Shanghai! Just the mere mention of ‘Shanghai’ conjures up mystery, romance and general decadence. Pre – 1949, cosmopolitan Shanghai was a magnet for seekers of wealth, idle colonialists, explorers and the dispossessed. Everything went belly up in 1949, when Mao and the communists took to power and swept the good times and rock and roll away. A legacy of these heady times is Shanghai’s Bund where on and around this waterfront promenade are a vast series of grandiose pre-1949 buildings. Just across the Huangpu River is the new Shanghai, a high-tech development of gravity defying skyscrapers.

Today we tour many of the city’s top spots - Yu Gardens and Bazaar- Shanghai’s finest traditional garden, the Bund, Pudong and the Oriental Pearl TV Tower and take a cruise along the Huangpu River.
Overnight: Shanghai  |  Breakfast

Day 10

Shanghai - Suzhou - Shanghai. Today, we journey to an oriental Venice via high speed train - ancient Suzhou interwoven by a series of canals and pretty waterways. We cruise on the Grand Canal at 1800km in length it's the longest canal on earth and ranks alongside the Great Wall as China’s greatest engineering achievement, and visit a silk workshop
Overnight: Shanghai  |  Breakfast, Lunch

Day 11

Tuesday. Our tour ends after breakfast and onward departure transfer to airport.
Breakfast

The hotels listed below are ones which we frequently use on this tour. We reserve the right to substitute these hotels to ones of a similar standard when necessary.

Accommodation on Tour

For all our tours and tailor-made holidays we provide you with a clear categorisation of all hotels we use. The REGIONAL CATEGORY indicates the local rating of each hotel in each respective country. We have also rated each hotel using OUR CATEGORY, which will be in line with generally accepted western hotel grading standards.

Simple
Basic hotels and simple accommodation is a no frills option with an adventurous authentic feel.

Standard
Standard accommodation equates to a Western 3-star standard, always featuring en-suite rooms and usually a restaurant.

Superior
Superior accommodation equates to a Western 4-star standard, featuring en-suite rooms and usually a restaurant and often a swimming pool and/or a fitness centre.

Deluxe
Deluxe accommodation equates to a Western 5-star standard, usually featuring spacious, en-suite rooms, a restaurant, swimming pool and fitness centre and an array of amenities, excellent service and customer care.

Lavish
Lavish accommodation equates to a Western 5-star plus standard - the creme de la creme. Featuring spacious, en-suite rooms, a restaurant, swimming pool and fitness centre and an array of amenities, this accommodation is a cut above the rest. Sheer opulence!

Rainbow Hotel, Beijing
Our Category: Standard   |   Regional Category: 3 Star Hotel

The Rainbow is a contemporary hotel accented by the colours of traditional Chinese folk art culture. The spacious guestrooms display character of the Ming and Qing dynasties with beautiful wooden furniture whilst providing modern amenities fit for international travellers. The hotel also has a restaurant, cafe and bar.

Peony Hotel, Luoyang
Our Category: Superior   |   Regional Category: 4 Star Hotel

The Peony Hotel is an impressive, modern sky-scraper with stylishly decorated rooms. The functional rooms are well facilitated with modern amenities and the hotel also has a restaurant and business centre.

Wan Nian Grand Hotel, Xi'an
Our Category: Standard   |   Regional Category: 3 Star Hotel

The Wan Nian Grand is a comfortable, friendly hotel with light, good sized rooms. Elegantly decorated, the rooms also boast modern amenities and the hotel has a wealth of facilities including an indoor pool and sauna house, a cafe and bar, and well-equipped business centre.

Train - 4 berth soft sleeper cabin, Beijing
Our Category: Simple   |   Regional Category: Train

Soft sleeper cabins are private compartments which have four bunks - two upper and two lower. A door separates the compartment from the aisle and bedding and pillows are provided. Each bunk is equipped with a small reading lamp. Temperature controls are installed alongside the door. Generally, the facilities include a clothes rack, slippers, clothes brush, stainless steel thermos, fine porcelain teacup, a waste bin and wall socket.

Shanghai Paradise Hotel, Shanghai
Our Category: Superior   |   Regional Category: 4 Star Hotel

The Paradise is a smart, modern hotel with comfortable and good-sized rooms with internet access. Facilities include elegant restaurants serving Shanghai cuisine and French food, a well-equipped business centre and fitness centre.

Trip Highlights

Beijing - Tiananmen Square, Forbidden City, UNESCO listed Emperor's Summer Palace, Silk Alley markets, Cloisonne Factory, Hutong area of Beijing, Chinese Acrobatic Show
Luoyang – UNESCO listed Longman Caves and stone carvings, White Horse Buddhist Temple, Peony Square activities
Shanghai - Oriental Pearl TV Tower, The Bund and Old Shanghai, Yuyuan Garden, Huang River skyline of Pudong City
Badaling - UNESCO listed Great Wall of China
Xi'an - UNESCO listed Terracotta Warriors, Clay warrior workshop, Big Wild Goose Pagoda, City Wall and bike ride, Muslim Quarter, Great Mosque and market.
Suzhou - UNESCO listed gardens, Grand Canal and waterways, Silk factory, Humble Administrator’s Garden

Included

10 breakfasts, 4 lunches and 2 dinners including a traditional Chinese meal in Beijing and a local dinner in Xi'an
1 overnight train Xi'an - Shanghai (sleeper cabin)
Rickshaw ride through Beijings Hutongs
Shanghai - Huangpu River Cruise
Touring of Beijing, Luoyang, Xi'an, Shanghai and Suzhou
English speaking specialist guides at local sights
Airport arrival and departure transfer on day 1 and day 11
9 nights 3-4 star hotels
Chinese acrobatic performance
Xi’an - bike ride on medieval City Wall
Suzhou - historic Grand Canal cruise
Tour leader escorted for groups of 6 or more
All relevant transfers and transportation
High speed train journeys between Beijing and Luoyang and Luoyang and Xi'an

Not Included

International flights and visa
Entrance Fees: $155-160 USD
Tip for your tour guide. We recommend you allow USD$3 - 5 per day, per traveller. Tipping your guide is an entirely personal gesture
Tipping Kitty: $70-75 USD

We have done quite a few tours, and I must say that Chinese Checkers rates among the best. Justin our tour guide was such a good support, very caring, very knowledgeable and he went out of his way to be helpful and to make sure we saw and did all that we wanted to do.

I filled in the survey at the end of the tour, and I don't think I mentioned Justin by name so I thought I would just let you know.

Tour
5
Guide
Country

The tour was great! We had lovely tourmates and guide. The weather was good, thanks to the APAC meeting held in Beijing, thus the air pollution was limited. Our guide, Stephanie was like a "mother" to us. She explains very well and will always inform us of the good food near the hotel. She will also ask if we are comfortable in the different hotels. She is a really good guide and takes good care of us. I will recommend friends to request for her should they go on this tour to Beijing. Unfortunately, our time spent together ended when we board the overnight train to Shanghai.

Over at Shanghai, we had another lovely guide, Billy. He brought us to places we wish to go and explained the history of diff places we visited. He did a good job in meeting our wishes to wish different places and buying things before we all return home.

Tour
5
Guide
Country

Extremely pleased with the tour. Stephanie, the tour guide was exceptional in every way and made the trip very special for my daughter and I. Nothing was too much trouble for her. She was efficient and extremely well organised,everything was done with a smile. She is real asset to your company in every way. She attended to the finer details of the trip with diligence and professionalism.

The content of the tour was well balnced and certainly lived up to the lable on the tin:'On the Go'!

My only recommendation would be to take a bullet train from Xi'an to Shanghai and have an extra night at the hotel rather than the sleeper train even this was refelcted in a slight increase in price.

The transfers too and from the airports were excellent,especially the guide in Shanghai who escorted us to the airport.

Ray, the guide in Shanghai was the least efficient of the guides, not giving clear time frames and showed a lack of interst int he people on the tour. readying the newspaper rather than attending to queries.

Overall I would recommend this tour or take anothet tour with this comp[any but most of all I would congrate Stephanie on all aspects of the tour guides role. Well Done !

Tour
5
Guide
Country

Stephanie was an excellent guide, very personable with a wealth of knowledge and very easy going. She went out of her way to make sure everyone was well looked after and happy.

Tour
4
Guide
Country

Stephanie, our guide throughout, was excellent in every way. She helped and supported the group in every way, nothing was too much trouble for her. She helped us make our holiday so special. She is a true asset to your company.

Prices shown are per person travelling. 'Twin/Double' prices per person apply when there are 2 people travelling, sharing a room. The 'Single supplement' applies for single travellers who require their own room and needs to be added to the 'Twin/Double' price. If you are happy to be paired up with another single traveller of the same sex on your tour, this can be arranged provided there is another single traveller booked on the tour date of your choosing.

Easter departure, book early!
Easter Departure
2015
Price/Person
Single Supp.
 
USD $2529
USD $799
15% off
USD $2529
USD $799
 
USD $2529
USD $799
 
USD $2529
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USD $2529
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USD $2529
USD $799
10% off
USD $2529
USD $799
 
USD $2529
USD $799
 
USD $2529
USD $799
 
USD $2529
USD $799
 
USD $2529
USD $799
2016
Price/Person
Single Supp.
Easter departure, book early!
USD $2529
USD $799
 
USD $2529
USD $799
 
USD $2529
USD $799
 
USD $2529
USD $799
 
USD $2529
USD $799
 
USD $2529
USD $799
 
USD $2529
USD $799
 
USD $2529
USD $799
 
USD $2529
USD $799
 
USD $2529
USD $799
 
USD $2529
USD $799
 
USD $2529
USD $799
 
USD $2529
USD $799
 
USD $2529
USD $799
 
USD $2529
USD $799
 
USD $2529
USD $799
 
USD $2529
USD $799
 
USD $2529
USD $799
 
USD $2529
USD $799

Supplementary Prices

 
Twin/Double
Single Supp.
Private Tour Supplement
USD $850
-  
Beijing - Pre-tour accom.
USD $80
USD $70
Shanghai - Post-tour accom.
USD $80
USD $70

This tour is also available on a private basis - for details please see the Supplementary Prices at the bottom of this page.

Tour Details
Starts
Beijing
Ends
Shanghai
Departs
Saturdays
Hotel Rating
3 - 4 star
Local Payment
None
Tour Guide
Yes - escorted by a tour guide
Meals
Breakfast: 10, Lunch: 4, Dinner: 2
Tour Bolt-ons
Enhance your trip with these amazing added extras and bolt-ons
Giant Pandas
USD $145
Uncover North Korea
USD $3,899 / 5 days
Hong Kong Express
USD $479 / 1 day
Kunming
USD $529 / 3 days
Guilin & Yangshuo
USD $799 / 3 days
Datong
USD $799 / 4 days

We have done quite a few tours, and I must say that Chinese Checkers rates among the best. Justin our tour guide was such a good support, very caring, very knowledgeable and he went out of his way to be helpful and to make sure we saw and did all that we wanted to do.

I filled in the survey at the end of the tour, and I don't think I mentioned Justin by name so I thought I would just let you know.

Barbara Collier
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On The Go Tours Great group size
With an average of 18 and a maximum of 28, our group size really works well on tour, so you're bound to meet like-minded travellers and make lasting friendships.
Group travel is a great way to make new friends
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Guaranteed Departures
This tour is 100% guaranteed to depart with 2 travellers.