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On The Go Tours / China / Tours / Fine China 13 Days

Fine China

13 days  |  Beijing to Hong Kong or Shanghai  |  from USD $3,599  |   Guaranteed Departure 

Climb the Great Wall, enter the Forbidden City, inspect a grotto, challenge the Warriors at Xi’an and cruise the River Li at scenic Yangshuo. We top off your Eastern feast with a choice of sparkling Shanghai or dazzling Hong Kong.

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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.
Overnight: Beijing

Day 2

Today, we embark on a tour of the nation’s capital. The famous portrait of Mao Zedong, China’s communist father still looks out over gargantuan Tiananmen Square from the Gate of Heavenly Peace. On the square you can not miss the mausoleum, an austere behemoth in granite where Mao lies in state in his crystal coffin. We take a stroll on the square all under the watchful eye of the dutiful guards. A vision in grandeur with it’s imperial yellow roofs and vermilion walls, the Forbidden city was forbidden to all those except on imperial business until 1911, when the last emperor, Puyi, was turfed off his throne. We enjoy a guided walk through the city’s many temples, grand halls and courtyards. The Forbidden city boasts 9999 rooms! Afternoon rickshaw ride through the Hutongs of Beijing.

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 travel beyond Beijing to Badaling, where we take a walk along the famed Great Wall. No matter how many pictures you’ve seen, the Great Wall of China is very impressive. Following a ridge of barren hills through northern China, it stretches as far as the eye can see - at least 6,700 kilometres. Continuing, we visit a cloisonne workshop of decorative metal and enamel sculpture.

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!

If travelling in 2013 please see Go Guide for alternative arrangements.
Overnight: Luoyang  |  Breakfast

Day 5

Today we explore the UNESCO world heritage listed 6th Century Longman Caves, etched into the cliffs along the Yi River. The 1300 caves (grottoes) were carved out by hand during the Northern Wei Dynasty and are adorned with more than 100,000 statues and images of Buddha and his disciples. Later we tour the first Buddhist temple in China - White Horse Temple before having a delicious local dinner.
Overnight: Luoyang  |  Breakfast, Dinner

Day 6

Luoyang - Xi’an. Early this morning we visit Peony Square to watch or partake in a little exercise. Many Chinese exercise in the square daily, practising ballroom dancing and tai chi, sword fighting or playing sports like badminton and hacky sack in the wee hours of the morning. The square’s name originates from the long history of peonies in Luoyang. In April the flower comes into full bloom and the city is full of colour and fragrance. 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 rest of the evening is at leisure.
Overnight: Xi'an  |  Breakfast

Day 7

Most famous for the legendary Terracotta Warriors, perhaps the greatest find of the 20th century and only just usurped by the discovery of King Tut’s gold-laden tomb in Egypt. These warriors comprise more than 7,000 life-sized soldiers which stand in military formation in excavated pits under the cover of a modern protective hanger. Made of local clay, no two faces are alike, each is said to be an individual portrait. We visit the Terracotta Warrior archaeological site and a workshop where warrior figurines are made. This evening we can attend a Tang Dynasty dinner and performance with Chang’an music and dance originally performed for the illustrious Tang emperors.
Overnight: Xi'an  |  Breakfast, Lunch

Day 8

Xi’an - Guilin - Yangshou. 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. Later we fly south to Guilin. Onward transfer to Yangshuo (approx 1.5hrs drive). Hot pot lunch, late evening hotel check in.
Overnight: Yangshuo  |  Breakfast, Lunch

Days 9-10

Yangshuo - Guilin. Renowned for the striking scenery of vast areas of karst limestone outcrops that rise up from flat rice paddy fields, Guilin and Yangshuo are often the subject of many Chinese paintings. Today, we take a 2 hour rafting cruise along the calm clean waters of Yu Long River. As our captain punts (propels us forward by pushing against the river bed with a long pole) our flat bottom boat along the shallow waters endless photo opportunities arise. The remainder of our time in Yangshuo is spent at leisure. Choose to hike, hire a bicycle or motorbike and head off on one of the many mountain trails or stop to watch the local fishermen use their trained cormorants to catch fish - a centuries old tradition, though somewhat commercialised these days. Time can also be spent exploring West Street. The ancient alley is laden with quirky shops, tea shops, antiques, calligraphers and art studios. Maybe take a beginners art class with a local painter or enjoy a morning class at the ‘Cloud 9’ cooking school. By nightfall, sit in any of the al fresco cafes, pubs or bars serving cold beer and delicious speciality foods from the region, catch a film at any of the outdoor cinemas or attend the nightly ‘Impression Liu Sanjie’ musical, with a cast of 500 singers and dancers. In the late afternoon of day 10 we return to Guilin.
Overnight: Yangshuo (1), Guilin (1)  |  Breakfast x 2

Day 11
Dragon's backbone

Guilin - Longsheng - Guangzhou. A 90 minute drive leads us to Longsheng, to walk the rice terraces of the Dragon’s Backbone. Beginning at the base of Mt Longji the verdant green rice fields coil up the steep mountain, layer upon layer, climbing to its summit. Taking a walk along the stone paths no more than a metre wide, we’ll pass many of the Yao and Red Yao minority women, baskets on their backs, who are also climbing skyward. Reaching the ‘Seven Stars accompanying Moon’ lookout, soak up the spectacular views. The full panorama offers thousands of ribbon like terraces cascading to the meandering streams and valley floor beneath. Returning to Guilin, we travel onward to Hong Kong OR fly to Shanghai (see ‘Onward to Shanghai’ itinerary below). If heading for Hong Kong, later tonight we board the express sleeper train to Guangzhou.
Overnight: Sleeper Train to Guangzhou  |  Breakfast

Day 12

Guangzhou - Kowloon/Hong Kong. Arrive Guangzhou and transfer by train to Hong Kong and onward to your hotel. The remainder of the day is free for you to explore, maybe head over to Victoria Peak, Stanley Markets or Aberdeen Harbour.

Note: Touring arrangements from here forward exclude the services of a tour guide, although local representatives will be on hand to assist with your arrival into Kowloon.
Overnight: Hong Kong

Day 13

Thursday. Tour ends after breakfast and hotel check out at 12noon. Hong Kong International airport is a quick 24min journey on the Airport Express train running at 12 minute intervals. The train ride is not included as part of your itinerary.
Breakfast

Onward to Shanghai

Day 11 - Dragon's backbone
Yangshuo - Longsheng - Shanghai - breakfast. Evening flight to Shanghai and hotel check in. Overnight - Shanghai

Day 12: Shanghai
Shanghai - breakfast. Focus your eyes on Shanghai! The day is free day for you to explore. Perhaps visit The Bund, Jade Buddha Temple or the Old City where you can shop on Nanjing Road. Head for the Oriental Pearl TV Tower at sunset, Shanghai dazzles at dusk! Overnight - Shanghai

Day 13: Shanghai
Shanghai - breakfast. Hotel check-out and included onward transfer to airport

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.

Yangshuo Tangrenjie Hotel, Yangshuo
Our Category: Superior   |   Regional Category: 4 Star Hotel

The Yangshuo Tangrenjie is a modern hotel with a unique architectural style in beautiful surroundings. The tastefully furnished rooms are well-equipped with modern amenities and the hotel has an excellent range of facilities including a sauna, business centre and a number of restaurants.

Guilin Osmanthus Hotel, Guilin
Our Category: Standard   |   Regional Category: 3 Star Hotel

Featuring lush green gardens and enjoying an enviable position on the scenic riverside of downtown Guilin, this hotel offers comfortable rooms with excellent facilities including restaurants known for delicate and delicious food.

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.

Nathan Hotel, Hong Kong
Our Category: Standard   |   Regional Category: 3 Star Hotel

The Nathan is a stylish hotel with good sized, comfortable rooms fully-equipped with modern amenities. Facilities include a 24hr business centre, a handsome wine cellar, a contemporary restaurant and open-air bar.

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
Guilin/ Yangshuo – karst landscape, riverside villages and lush scenery, cruise along the peaceful River Li
Hong Kong – city and free time to explore Victoria Peak, Stanley Markets, Aberdeen Harbour and more!

OR

Shanghai – city and free time to explore the Jade Buddha Temple, Yuyuan Garden, The Bund and Old Shanghai.
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.
Longsheng – the Dragon’s backbone rice terraces

Included

11 breakfasts, 3 lunches and 2 dinners including a Traditional Chinese meal in Beijing and a local dinner in Xi'an.
2 overnight trains - (soft sleeper cabin) if taking Hong Kong option. 1 overnight train and 1 night 3 star hotel if taking the Shanghai option.
Rickshaw ride through Beijings' Hutongs
Raft/cruise excursion on the Yu Long River
Touring of Beijing, Badaling, Luoyang, Xi'an, Guilin, Yangshuo and Longsheng
English speaking specialist guides at local sights
Airport arrival and departure transfer on day 1 and day 13 (departure transfer Shanghai only not Hong Kong)
11 nights 3-4 star hotels
Chinese acrobatic performance
Xi’an - bike ride on medieval City Wall
Economy class flight - Xi’an – Guilin
Tour leader escorted for groups of 6 or more
All relevant transfers and transportation
High speed trains between Beijing and Luoyang & Luoyang and Xi'an

Not Included

International flights and visa
Entrance Fees: $115-120 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: $80-85 USD

We had a wonderful time. It was great to see the cities and then travel into the country side of Guilin and Yangshou. The hotels were good as were the breakfasts excepr at the hotel in Guilin, breakfast was terrible. We had a flight cancelled and the guide (Louise) worked to remedy this satisfactorly. Everything we saw was what we wanted. The times allowed at each site was realistic. The only place we thought was a waste of time was the Silk Market - but we don't like shopping. When we reached Shanghai we were a little disappointed that nothing was organised for us to do, that said we saw heaps of the city using the subway and the Hop on Hop off bus. We really enjoyed the 3 shows we went to especially the kung Fu show.

Justin, our main guide was fantastic. His English was great. His knowledge and enthusiasm for China was amazing. Justine explained any questions clearly and fully, especially anything related to Chinese culture and customs. He coped well with a couple of difficult people on the tour. Joe in Luoyang was great. Beni in Xian was extremely entertaining and informative. Louise in Yangshou and Guilin went way beyond expectations, she showed us her hometown with love. She explained lots of culture and customs and took us to some amazing local restaurants.

All in all our trip was fantastic.

Tour
5
Guide
Country

The tour was very interesting and pleasant, often due to the organisational talent, the flexibility and the nice personality of our national tour guide Mandy. Her local and English knowledge is very good. The additional local tour guides we had in Xi’an, Chongqing, Yichang, Nanjing, Suzhou and Shanghai were also very good in their local knowledge and in English. The personal stories from all of them gave us a glimpse into Chinese family life.

Tour
5
Guide
Country

Justin is an excellent tour guide, friendly, very calm. I really enjoyed his company.

Tour
4
Guide
Country

We've enjoyed our holiday and appreciate the efforts of the guide.

Friendly and professional, good tour group, great tour guides. Thank you for such a good holiday.

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 $3599
USD $1029
 
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2016
Price/Person
Single Supp.
Easter departure, book early!
USD $3599
USD $1029
 
USD $3599
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USD $3599
USD $1029
 
USD $3599
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USD $3599
USD $1029

Supplementary Prices

 
Twin/Double
Single Supp.
Private Tour Supplement
USD $990
-  
Beijing - Pre-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
Hong Kong or Shanghai
Departs
Saturdays
Hotel Rating
3 - 4 star
Local Payment
None
Tour Guide
Yes - escorted by a tour guide
Meals
Breakfast: 11, Lunch: 3, 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
Suzhou
USD $699 / 3 days
Datong
USD $799 / 4 days

The tour was very interesting and pleasant, often due to the organisational talent, the flexibility and the nice personality of our national tour guide Mandy. Her local and English knowledge is very good. The additional local tour guides we had in Xi’an, Chongqing, Yichang, Nanjing, Suzhou and Shanghai were also very good in their local knowledge and in English. The personal stories from all of them gave us a glimpse into Chinese family life.

Helga Peukert
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This tour is 100% guaranteed to depart with 2 travellers.