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Welcome to Shanghai! Arrival transfer from the airport to our hotel. Perhaps China’s most modern city, Shanghai's amazing Pudong skyline is breathtaking.
Today, we explore the sights of Shanghai. We visit the Oriental Pearl TV tower, the Jade Buddha Temple, French Quarter or the Old City including the Yuyuan Garded, Shanghai’s famous Bund, Shanghai Museum and enjoy a cruise on the Huangpu River.
Day at leisure in Shanghai.
En route to ancient Suzhou in Jiangsu Province stop off at lovely Zhouzhuang - an ancient town featuring traditional buildings, small bridges and tree-lined waterways astride the Jinghang Canal.
One of China’s most charming cities, Suzhou’s fame rests on it’s waterways, and canals that are dotted with traditional bridges, houses and UNESCO-listed gardens. Cruise on the Grand Canal exposes Suzhou’s beauty. Also visit a silk workshop and the Humble Administrator’s Garden.
Today, we transfer you to Tunxi.
Visit Huangshan by cable car. Considered the most beautiful mountain in China, Yellow Mountain or Huangshan is one of a range of 72 peaks in the south of Anhui Province. Set amidst rural landscapes and with its slopes clad in pine, the ethereal scenery is nothing short of breathtaking. Some 9,000 steps have been carved into the mountain, for those that want to walk up the most stunning stairwell on earth, though our excursion does include a return cable-car journey to the scenic area, where you’ll stay for two nights in a hotel at the top. Including: beginning-to-believe Peak, Lion Peak, Cooling,Terrace, the Flower from Dreaming Pen, Monkey-gazzing at the Sea.
Enjoy the sunrise, Cloud-dispelling Pavilionthe Grand Canyon, Flying-rock and the Summit Peak.
Today, we travel to Hangzhou. Hangzhou is unusual for a Chinese city, in that it encompasses large tracts of greenery which might normally be classified as countryside. This is thanks to Xi Hu, the large lake that Hangzhou straddles. The lake is dotted with various islands and causeways, whilst the shoreline offers wonderful vistas of green trees, hills, flowers, pavillions, pagodas and boats. Zangzhou is also the southern terminus of the Grand Canal and an important centre for silk, tea and paper-making. This afternoon, we enjoy visit to the Six Harmonies Pagoda and Chinese Tea Museum.
Today, we explore the West Lake, Lingyin Temple and take a bicycle ride.
Today, we fly to Guilin to enjoy an afternoon at leisure.
Renown for it’s striking, if bizarre scenery, vast areas of karst limestone outcrops that rise up from flat rice paddy fields, Guilin is often the subject of Chinese painting. We undertake a relaxing cruise down the River Li to Yangshuo passing an endless procession of peaks and simple villages. The local fishermen use trained cormorants to catch fish and local village boys paddle out to the river boats with all manner of souvenirs. We spend some time in charming Yangshuo, with its little shops and cafes. Back in Guilin, we visit the enormous Reed Flute Caves.
Today, we fly to Xi’an, perhaps most famous for the discovery of Emperor Qin’s Terracotta Warriors. Discovered in 1974 by local farmers digging a well, the 2,200 year old Terracotta Warriors comprise more than 7,000 life-sized soldiers standing battle-ready in excavated pits under the cover of a modern protective hanger. No two faces are alike – each is said to be an individual portrait. Today, we visit the archaeological site of the Terracotta Warriors, Huanqing Hot Springs, a scenic spot in the shadow of Li Mountain and a workshop where crafts people make clay warrior replicas.
Today, we visit the city symbol, the Big Wild Goose Pagoda, before enjoying a leisurely bike ride on Xi’an’s medieval City Wall, which dates from the Ming dynasty. We then visit the local Muslim Quarter and Great Mosque before taking an overnight sleeper train to Beijing.
This morning, we tour the centre of Beijing 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. Peking Duck dinner this evening.
Today, travel beyond Beijing to Badaling, where you can walk (almost climb on some sections) on the Great Wall. Following a ridge of barren hills through northern China, it stretches as far as the eye can see - at least 6,700 kms! Continuing on, a visit is made to the tombs of the Ming emperors, where some 13 emperors were interred. The tombs are approached via a sacred gateway and gate houses. Also visit a cloisonne workshop, where you’ll see firsthand the production of decorative items utilising the techniques of this practised and ancient craft.
Visit Silk Alley markets and the Summer Palace with its UNESCO-listed imperial gardens, located on Kunming Lake.
Departure transfer to the airport.
Neatly dividing China into north and south, the 6340km-long Yangtze River is the third longest river in the world, winding ...