Saturday. Huan ying, welcome to China and the start of your holiday! Airport arrival transfer and hotel check in.
This morning, we tour the centre of Beijing, China's magnificent capital, including the massive Tiananmen Square and the sprawling Forbidden City. Boasting some 9999 rooms, the city within a city was once the sole preserve of the Chinese emperors. This afternoon we take a rickshaw ride through the Hutongs of Beijing and 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
Today, we drive beyond Beijing to Badaling, to walk a section of the famous Great Wall. Built in the Ming Dynasty, a 6m wide pathway makes a formidable defence, following the highest contours of a steep range of hills. 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
Beijing - Xiâ€™an. Free morning, opt for a walk in the local street market located near our hotel. There are a few unusual breakfast delicacies on offer! Later we visit the Emperor's Summer Palace, set on Kunming Lake and the Silk Alley Markets. After we drive past the 2008 Olympic Stadium commonly referred to as the â€˜Bird's Nestâ€™ and Aquatic Centre before boarding our overnight sleeper train (4 berth soft sleeper cabins) to Xi'an
Overnight: Sleeper Train | Breakfast
Arrive Xiâ€™an and hotel check in. Later we tour the Terracotta Warrior archaeological site where some 7,000 warriors stand in battle ready position and a factory demonstrating how the warriors are crafted. Tonight, optional Tang Dynasty Bolt-on, with dinner and performance.
Overnight: Xi'an | Breakfast, Lunch
Xiâ€™an - Shanghai. Spend the morning at leisure or opt for our early morning excursion to see Pandas at the Shaanxi Rare Wildlife Rescue and Breeding Centre. After we visit the Big Wild Goose Pagoda and take a bicycle ride along Xiâ€™an medieval City Wall. Dinner is served early this evening prior to boarding the overnight express train bound for Shanghai.
Overnight: Sleeper Train | Breakfast, Dinner
Focus your eyes on spectacular Shanghai. Perhaps, Chinaâ€™s most modern city, its amazing Pudong skyline is stunning. After breakfast at our hotel, we take a tour of the many city sights including Yuyuan Garden and The Bund, with a cruise on the Huangpu River.
Overnight: Shanghai | Breakfast
Shanghai - Suzhou - Shanghai. Today we take a high speed train journey to ancient Suzhou. A sort of oriental Venice, ancient Suzhou is interwoven by a series of canals and pretty waterways which feed a series of classical gardens, laid out here since the Song dynasty, a thousand years ago. They are justly famous across China. Suzhou sits very close to the Grand Canal. We enjoy a cruise on the Grand Canal, tour the Humble Administratorâ€™s Garden and visit a silk workshop
Overnight: Shanghai | Breakfast, Lunch
Sunday. Shanghai. Our tour ends after breakfast and onward departure transfer to airport.
If travelling with us on our Great Wall and Warriors tour departing 13 June 2015, we offer the exciting opportunity to witness Dragon Boat racing in Suzhou.
The annual Dragon Boat Festival held on Jinji Lake (Golden Rooster Lake) is host to more than 100 teams of budding young athletes competing for championship titles. In brightly decorated dragon themed boats, teams of 12 or so oarsmen race to the rhythm of the drum and the helmsman's chant. The festival also offers live entertainment, dancing and cultural performances, a craft market, food fair and a number of other sporting events that seem to have been inspired by the game show 'It's a Knockout'!
If travelling on our 13 June 2015 tour, arrangements of day 8 has been altered to allow us to spend a morning at the festival. A small tour supplement applies. Please see our to Go Guide for more info.
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.
Basic hotels and simple accommodation is a no frills option with an adventurous authentic feel.
Standard accommodation equates to a Western 3-star standard, always featuring en-suite rooms and usually a restaurant.
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 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 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!
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.
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.
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.
Tipping is not a natural part of many Western cultures and many of us feel uncomfortable, or unsure, about when, or how much, to tip. However, in China, tipping makes up a significant part of many people's wages so it's important that we get it right. For this reason we've developed a very simple system to take all the hassle out of tipping. With our 'tipping made easy' policy, a nominal pre-determined amount is collected from all group tour participants to cover tips en route. This then saves you the hassle of when and how much to tip bellhops, luggage handlers, local guides and other support staff through the tour. Our 'tipping made easy' doesn't include a tip to your group tour leader. Naturally, though, the amount is up to you as tipping is an entirely personal gesture.
Exceptional, well organised, not a single fault ”
Great introduction to china. In 9 days. All major sights included, plenty of free time too . Nice group number of 9. Really enjoyable
Stephanie our tour guide was great.her friendly face at the airport on arrival was really welcomed! We were fully informed of the itinerary and she was really informative and fun.
Local guide benny in x'ain was equally great-we were fully escorted and looked after .
Tony the local guide in Shanghai was punctual and reliable.
Beijing hotel : good points: excellent location
Bad points: filthy room, hard beds, terrible breakfast, staff spoke no English.
X'ain : great hotel, nice staff soft beds!!!
Shanghai: even better hotel, close to underground, lovely breakfast, great room softer beds nice hotel staff - great hotel.
Sleeper trains great fun although two journeys within few day quite tough going.
Food- the restaurants we went to during the day, the food was horrid- often cold. Although appreciated the difficulties to cater at tourist spots
Transport: great and reliable
Itinerary: brilliant ”
Feng was an excellent tour guide she was friendly, informative and very helpful. The tour was very well organised and we had an amazing holiday,. We would highly recommend 'On The Go Tours' to anyone wanting to travel on a tour and we would not hesitate to book any future tours with 'On The Go'”
Justin went above and beyond to ensure all members of the group had a great time. He dealt with everything in a great way and made the whole trip stress-free and gave us an amazing experience in China.”
This tour was fantastic value for money. Justin and our other guides Benni and Jackie were phenomenal.”
Exceptional, well organised, not a single fault ”