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Arrive in Beijing, the capital city of China. We will be warmly greeted at the airport by our tour guide and transferred to our hotel. Our welcome banquet includes the local delicacy, “Peking Roast Duck”.
Beijing has served as the capital of five dynasties over a period of 800 years. Today we start our city tour with a visit to Tiananmen Square, the second largest public square in the world, followed by a visit to the Forbidden City, the Chinese imperial palace from the Ming to Qing dynasty. In the afternoon, we continue to the Temple of Heaven, which was used by emperors in ancient times to offer sacrifices to heaven and pray for good harvest.
Our highlight today is an excursion to the majestic Great Wall, the most famous image of China. After lunch, see skilled artisans at work at a Cloisonné Factory. Later, visit the Changling Exhibition Hall of the Ming Tombs where thirteen out of the sixteen Ming dynasty emperors are buried. We top off the day by attending a superb and thrilling Chinese Acrobatic show in the evening.
This morning we tour the exquisite Summer Palace (Imperial Garden), the largest preserved ancient garden in China and a former summer resort for Emperors, followed by an outside view of the beautiful Bird’s Nest (National Stadium) and Water Cube (National Aquatics Centre), both purposely built for the 2008 Olympics. In the afternoon, we explore Beijing’s ancient alleyways (“Hutong”) by pedicab, followed by a stroll in Wangfujing, one of Beijing’s most famous shopping streets.
This morning we fly to Xi’an, the first Chinese city to open its doors to the world during the Tang dynasty and capital for eleven dynasties over a period of more than 2,000 year. Our highlight today is a visit to the Terracotta Warriors and Horses Museum to see the life-sized defending army to the first emperor of China, Qin Shi Huang. This site is among the most significant archaeological excavations of the 20th century. Later, we visit a Ceramics Art Factory, followed by a special Dumpling Banquet, while enjoying a performance of music and dance from the Tang Dynasty. Overnight - Ramada Hotel 4 star
This morning we visit the fascinating Shaanxi Provincial Museum, followed by a local noodle lunch featuring a noodle making demonstration. After lunch we visit the Ancient City Wall, the most complete ancient city wall that has survived in China. Then we visit the Big Wild Goose Pagoda, the symbol of the city. Overnight - Ramada Hotel 4 star
This morning we fly to Wuhan and transfer (approx 4-5 hours) to Yichang, the starting point of our Yangtze River cruise for the next four nights. We board our cruiser, remainder of today at leisure.
Enjoy a tour to the Three Gorges Dam, the world’s largest dam, before cruising on the Yangtze River. Over the next few days, relax and enjoy the beautiful scenery as we cross through the Yangtze Three Gorges: Xiling Gorge, Wu Gorge and Qutang Gorge.
We disembark from our cruise in the port city of Chongqing this morning and visit the Panda House at Chongqing Zoo before we fly to Guilin.
With its name translating to “Forest of Sweet Osmanthus”, Guilin has long been renowned for its unique scenery, amazing karst landscapes and rich ethnic cultures. This morning we tour Elephant Trunk Hill and the Reed Flute Caves and be amazed by the extraordinary karst limestone formations, followed by an Ethnic Minority Dancing and Singing Show this evening.
Today we enjoy a relaxing cruise along the Li River. The journey offers 30 miles of breathtaking scenery. We may have an opportunity to catch the fascinating sights of fisherman with cormorant birds while enjoying our lunch on board. We arrive in Yangshuo Village in the afternoon and walk along the 1,400 year old West Street and explore the beautiful Yangshuo local village.
This morning we return to Guilin and fly to Shanghai, the modern metropolis and commercial centre of China. Upon arrival, we travel to Tongli Town, a quiet and beautiful ancient water town with more than 1,000 years history. Then proceed to Suzhou which has been praised as “Paradise on Earth” since ancient times. Overnight - Holiday Inn Youlian Suzhou 4 star
As a large area of the city is covered by water, including a vast number of ponds and streams, Suzhou is known as “Venice of the East”. Suzhou is also known as the “Garden City”, due to its many classical gardens known for their charming natural beauty and harmonious construction. This morning we take a cruise on the Grand Canal and visit the Liu Garden, one of the four greatest Chinese gardens and a UNESCO world heritage site. We then visit a Silk Spinning Mill and learn how silk is created from mulberry-munching silkworms to produce the finest thread and cloth. Overnight - Holiday Inn Youlian Suzhou 4 star
This morning we travel to Wuxi, a unique water village situated in the centre of China’s Yangtze Delta and one of the oldest cities in China with more than 3,000 years history. Upon arrival, we visit Lake Tai and enjoy the beautiful view of Wuxi, followed by a visit to the Lingshan Grand Buddha and one of the largest Fresh Water Pearl Exhibitions in the country. Overnight - Wuxi Jinlun 4 star
This morning we travel to Hangzhou, described by Marco Polo as “the most beautiful and magnificent city in the world”. Upon arrival, we take a boat ride on the magnificent West Lake, undoubtedly the most renowned feature of Hangzhou, noted for the scenic beauty that blends naturally with many famous historical and cultural sites. Later on we experience oriental tea-tasting at the Dragon Well Tea Plantation. Overnight - Hangzhou Honglou 4 star
This morning we travel back to Shanghai and walk along the famous Bund, a mile-long stretch along the Huangpu River. Lined by the colonial architectures of European design, this area is the best place to capture the western influences of the old days. We then continue on to the Ming Dynasty Yu Garden which is considered to be one of four greatest Chinese gardens. Overnight - Shanghai Ocean 4 star
This morning we visit the Shanghai Museum to see ancient Chinese art, furniture and jade. Then we explore the Xintiandi area, an affluent and fashionable pedestrian street composed of unique Shikumen ("stone ate") and modern architecture style. Our farewell dinner this evening will be a banquet of delicious Shanghai cuisine. Overnight - Shanghai Ocean 4 star
Enjoy the morning at leisure before we transfer to Shanghai airport to board our onward flight.
Neatly dividing China into north and south, the 6340km-long Yangtze River is the third longest river in the world, winding ...