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Welcome to China! On arrival into Beijing International Airport (from your flight BA39 departed Heathrow on 1st May 2014) you will be met by and On The Go Representative and transferred to your hotel. The rest of the day is at leisure, so you can start exploring Beijing independently or relax and rest up for the evening at the hotel.
Today you will set out to sightsee the nation's capital, starting with Tiananmen Square and the Forbidden City. Tiananmen Square - home to the Monument of the People's Heroes and many important events in Chinese history - most notably the 1989 Student Protests. The Forbidden CIty - so called as it was only visited by people on Imperial business up until 1911 - is a vision in grandeur with yellow roofs, vermilion walls and the innermost sanctum of Beijing. This afternoon you will walk through the city's many temples, grand halls and courtyards before visiting the Temple of Heaven later today.
Today you take a journey outside of the city to the most famous wall in the world - the Great Wall of China. Take a walk or maybe even a climb on some of the lesser visited parts of the wall at the Jinshanling section - a much more fulfilling and intimate experience of the wall!
This morning we take an exciting rickshaw ride through the Hutongs of Beijing, weaving through old back lanes, traditional courtyards and compact houses, gaining a fascinating snapshot of the city’s traditional way of life. This afternoon you head over to the Summer Palace with its UNESCO listed imperial gardens on Kunming Lake.
Today you will be transferred to the train station for the bullet train to Luoyang. Upon arrival 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. Overnight Mudu Lihao International Hotel.
This morning we visit the Shaolin Temple. Situated on Song Shan mountain in the Henan province, the Shaolin Temple is said to be the “Number One Temple under Heaven”. The temple symbolizes the beginning of the Chinese Zen Buddhism and the Shaolin Martial Arts. Surrounded by mountains and lush vegetation, the temple is in a picturesque spot. This afternoon we will transfer you to the train station for the bullet train to Xi'an. Upon arrival we will be there to pick you up and transfer you to your Mudu Lihao International Hotel for the evening.
Xi’an is 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 and this afternoon we visit the city symbol, the Big Wild Goose Pagoda!
Today you will be transferred to the airport for your flight to Wuhan. Upon arrival you will be transferred to the train station for your train to Yichang where we will be there to transfer you to your Victoria cruise boat.
Good morning from the River Yangtze! At 6340km in length, the Yangtze is the 3rd longest river in the world, neatly dividing China into north and south and wending its way through eight very different provinces. The Gorges are a breathtaking sight! The next few days we spend cruising through the gorges towards Chongqing.
Disembark from the cruise in Chongqing and we will be there to pick you up and transfer you to the train station for the bullet train to Chengdu. Upon arrival we will be there to pick you up and transfer you to your hotel for the evening.
Driving to Leshan your morning is spent exploring the UNESCO World Heritage Listed Dafo (Great Buddha), which is carved into the red sandstone face of Lingyun Hill overlooking the treacherous confluence of the Min, Qingyi and Dadu rivers below it. It is standing at Dafo's huge 8m feet that you can really appreciate the scale of one of the world's largest Buddhas. Talking numbers, his ears droop 7m, his shoulders span 28m and his nose measures a whopping 5.6m! Travelling back to Chengdu we visit Huanglongxi enroute.
A short drive out of town takes you to the Chengdu Research Base of Giant Panda Breeding. China’s Giant Pandas are considered the most endangered mammal on the planet. Later we will transfer you to the airport for your flight to Guilin. Upon arrival we will be there to pick you up and transfer you to your hotel.
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. This evening you can enjoy the Impression Light Show.
After spending some time in charming Yangshuo, with its little shops and cafes, we journey back to Guilin and enroute visit the enormous Reed Flute Caves. This evening you can opt to see the traditional Cormorant Fishing.
This morning we drive to Longsheng. Here, we explore the rice terraces of the Dragon’s Backbone! Beginning at the base of Mt Longji the verdant green rice fields coil the steep mountain layer upon layer climbing to its summit. Where there is soil a terrace has been made! Taking a walk along the stone paths no more than a metre wide, we climb skyward to enjoy panoramic views of the ribbon like terraces with picturesque valleys and meandering streams below. This evening you will be transferred for your shared overnight 4 berth train to Guangzhou.
In Guangzhou you will need to change to your express seater train to Hong Kong. Upon arrival into Hong Kong shared shuttle transfer to your hotel for the evening. Overnight Park Hotel.
The next two days are free for you to relax or explore independently. Perhaps head up Victoria Peak to look down over the islands and the new territories, or why not end your Chinese adventures with a sampan (junk) boat ride around Aberdeen’s harbour and a seafood dish in one of the famed restaurants by the water front. Overnight Park Hotel.
Sadly your last day with us with your departure airport shared shuttle transfer for your flight BA26 to Heathrow.
About 100km northwest of Lijiang in Yunnan province is where the Yangtze River’s upper reaches, the Jingsha Jiang, channel with ...