FROM: USD $1,945

Harbin Ice Festival - 11 days

Discover China this Christmas to see the Great Wall, Beijing's Forbidden City and the Terracotta Warriors of Xi'an. Flying to Harbin, New Year's is a 5 star event as we discover the extraordinary, inspiring, enchanting and often incredibly beautiful ice installations of the 34th Harbin International Ice & Snow Festival.

Inclusions
Itinerary
Prices & Dates
Hotels
Reviews

Trip Highlights

HARBIN INTERNATIONAL ICE & SNOW FESTIVAL including Sun Island International Snow Sculpture Art Expo, Harbin Ice and Snow World and Harbin Ice Lantern Show at Zhaolin Park
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
BEIJING - Tiananmen Square, Forbidden City, UNESCO listed Emperor's Summer Palace, Silk Alley markets, Jade Carving Factory, Hutong area of Beijing, Chinese Acrobatic Show
LUOYANG – UNESCO listed Longman Caves and stone carvings, White Horse Buddhist Temple, Peony Square activities

Included

10 breakfasts, 2 lunches and 4 dinners including a traditional Peking Duck dinner
Flight from Xi’an – Harbin
Touring of Beijing, Great Wall area, Luoyang, Xi'an and Harbin Ice Festival
Rickshaw ride through Beijing's Hutongs
Escorted by an experienced English speaking Chinese Tour guide
All relevant transfers and transportation in private heated vehicles
2 nights 5 star hotel in Harbin, 7 nights 3-4 star hotels and 1 overnight train Harbin - Beijing (soft sleeper cabin)
High speed train journeys between Beijing and Luoyang and Luoyang and Xi'an
Chinese acrobatic performance in Beijing
Xi’an - bike ride on medieval City Wall
English speaking specialist guides at some sites
Airport arrival and departure transfer on day 1 and day 11

Not Included

International flights and visa
Entrance Fees: USD$200-220, paid in local currency
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: USD$75-85, paid in local currency

Itinerary

Day 1

Beijing

Sunday 23 December 2018. Welcome to China and the start of your holiday! Arrive Beijing Airport and included transfer to our hotel. The remainder of the day offers free time.
Overnight: Beijing

Day 2

The Forbidden City

This morning, we explore the centre of Beijing, including 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 rickshaws to the Hutongs areas of Beijing. As our trusty rickshaw driver peddles us through the network of alleys, old back lanes, traditional courtyards and compact houses, we gain a fascinating snapshot into the city’s traditional way of life. There is time to meet a local family and take a peek inside their home, before returning to our hotel. It's Christmas Eve and to get you in the festive mood we'll enjoy a tasty Christmas banquet tonight.
Overnight: Beijing  |  Breakfast, Dinner

Day 3

Xmas at the Great Wall

Merry Christmas! Today we drive beyond Beijing to Badaling, where we can walk a section of the famous Great Wall. Climbing the Great Wall on Xmas day, now that’s something special. The wall is a little steep in sections, but the photo opportunities are worth a million dollars! Afterwards, we visit a Jade Carving Centre, where we learn about its importance in Chinese culture. We celebrate our Christmas in China with a traditional Peking Duck dinner this evening, followed by an astounding acrobatic show.
Overnight: Beijing  |  Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 4

Summer Palace & Silk Alley

Beijing - Luoyang. Today we start with a sightseeing tour of the Summer Palace, set on Kunming Lake. The lake may be frozen solid. This afternoon we visit the famed Silk Alley markets, boasting more than 1000 stores and every souvenir imaginable. Later today we 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! We arrive to Luoyang late this evening.
Overnight: Luoyang  |  Breakfast

Day 5

Longman Grottoes

Today we explore the UNESCO World Heritage listed Longman Caves. Carved into the cliffs along the Yi River, the 1300 caves (grottoes) were hollowed out during the Northern Wei Dynasty. Creating temples within the caves they then sculpted and decorated the interior with 100,000 statues and images of Buddha and his disciples. Experts consider the Longman Caves to be the artistic triumph of all Buddhist stone carvings. Later this afternoon we tour the stunning White Horse Temple, the first Buddhist temple in China before having a delicious local dinner.
Overnight: Luoyang  |  Breakfast, Dinner

Day 6

Luoyang - Xi'an

Early this morning we walk to Peony Square to witness and maybe even partake in a little local exercise. Hundreds of local people enjoy their daily exercise by practising ballroom dancing, performing tai chi, sword fighting and play sports like badminton and hacky sack in the early hours of the morning. It's a marvel to watch! After some free time we board a high speed express trains to Xi'an, evening at leisure.
Overnight: Xi'an  |  Breakfast

Day 7

Terracotta Warriors

Today, we visit the Terracotta Warrior archaeological site where some 7,000 warriors stand in battle ready position and a factory that shows how the terracotta figurines were crafted. Tonight, optional Tang Dynasty Add-on, with dinner and performance.
Overnight: Xi'an  |  Breakfast, Lunch

Day 8

Xi'an

Xi’an - Harbin. This morning we bike ride (solo or tandem) on top of the amazing old City Wall, offering unique views of the city and residents going about their daily lives. Visit the Big Wild Goose Pagoda, the Muslim Quarter and Great Mosque, with time to explore. Evening flight to Beijing and onward connecting flight to Harbin.
Overnight: Harbin  |  Breakfast

Day 9

Snow Sculpture Festival & Ice World

Today, we hit Sun Island Park for the Harbin International Snow Sculpture Art Expo. The festival is open to visitors from 20 Dec, (though the official festival opening occurs on 05 Jan). This is a wonderful time to visit as sculptors will still be adding final touches to their somewhat massive icy masterpieces.

Later we visit Harbin Snow and Ice World an otherworldly theme park where the incredibly large displays change from year to year. what will be on offer this year is anyone's guess. Imagine sliding down a 100m ice luge resembling the Great Wall of China. You can pick up some serious speed if wearing a slick winter coat. Climbing to the top of a replica of the Emperor’s Summer Palace in Beijing, complete with towers, guard house, moat and seven arched bridge or sail away on Empress Dowager Cixi’s ice marble boat. Living up to its name the ‘Ice World’ is totally beyond imagination, unusual, enchanting, inspiring and a little peculiar.

This evening we include dinner at hotpot restaurant before returning to our hotel to take a position our hotel bar to ring in the new year. With plenty of lights, ice and ‘Maitai firewater', (the local alcoholic spirit) we welcome in the coming year.
Overnight: Harbin  |  Breakfast, Dinner

Day 10

Happy New Year!

Harbin - Beijing. Happy New Year! This morning offers free time before an afternoon visit to Zhaolin Park to see the Ice Lantern Show, also known as the Ice Lantern Art Fair. In previous years we've seen ice blocks standing some 8 metres tall, resembling giant ice lollies are sculpted into the most unusual designs; a rooster, a dragon boat, a pair of cupids fluttering in the heavens and a cavalry about to do battle. Each is lit up with hundreds of Traditional Chinese lanterns and a multitude of neon creating the most spectacular photo opportunities. Later this evening we bid farewell to Harbin boarding our overnight sleeper train to Beijing.
Overnight: Soft Sleeper Train to Beijing  |  Breakfast

Day 11

Beijing departure

Wednesday 02 January 2019. Upon arrival to Beijing we transfer to local hotel for a hot breakfast. Today offers free time for you to further explore Beijing before included departure transfer to the airport. We hope you have had a wonderful Christmas and New Year tour in China! Note: Onward flights should be booked for departure after 2pm.
Breakfast

Visit the caves of Datong

Datong is an ancient cultural city dating back more than 2,000 years, the region’s biggest attraction is the UNESCO-listed Yungang Caves. Built more than 1,500 years ago, the 53 caves are a treasure trove of ancient Buddhist art comprising a fine collection of carved-sandstone Buddhist figures. See our Datong bolt on for more info. Take a look at our other great bolt-ons.

Prices & Dates

Departure dates noted with a 'G' are guaranteed to operate. All other departure dates are guaranteed with a minimum of 2 persons. 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.

Read More
Guaranteed Departure
Available
Contact us to book
Sold out
2018
Price /
Person
Single
Supp.
USD $1,945
USD $990
2019
Price /
Person
Single
Supp.
USD $1,945
USD $990

Extra Prices

Price /
Person
Single
Supp.
Pre-Tour Accommodation - Beijing
USD $100
USD $100
Post-Tour Accommodation - Beijing
USD $100
USD $100

Hotels

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.

Holiday Inn Temple of Heaven, Beijing

Our Category: Superior   |   Regional Category: 4 Star Hotel

The Beijing Holiday Inn Temple of Heaven is an elegant and comfortable hotel with well-furnished and spacious rooms. Practical in design, the guestrooms feature internet access and the hotel also boasts a range of restaurants and bars, as well as an indoor swimming pool. Located just a 10 minute walk from the Temple of Heaven, the hotel is the perfect base from which to explore this fascinating city.

Holiday Inn Express Beijing Minzuyuan, Beijing

Our Category: Superior   |   Regional Category: 4 Star Hotel

Located just a stones throw from the Beitucheng Subway station, with access to Line 10 & Line 8, the Holiday Inn Express Beijing Minzuyuan is a perfect base to explore the many amazing highlights of Beijing. Within walking distance of the hotel you'll find the famous Birds Nest Olympic Stadium. The hotel boasts a stylish restaurant offering breakfast, lunch and dinner.

Peony Plaza, Luoyang

Our Category: Superior   |   Regional Category: 4 Star Hotel

The Peony Plaza Hotel is ideally located in Luoyang city centre, making it easily accessible from all parts of the city. The hotel benefits from a stylish, contemporary design and the guest rooms are tastefully furnished. All rooms feature minibars, free WiFi and LCD TVs with cable channels. The hotel also boasts a sauna and massage centre as well as a rotating restaurant for excellent views of the city.

Wan Nian Grand Hotel, Xi'an

Our Category: Superior   |   Regional Category: 4 Star Hotel

The Wan Nian Grand is a comfortable, friendly hotel with light and spacious guest 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. The hotel is located 4 kilometres from the railway station and 30 kilometres from the airport.

Songbei Shangri-la Hotel, Harbin

Our Category: Superior   |   Regional Category: 5 Star Hotel

Ideally situated on the banks of the Songhua River, is the Songbei Shangri-la Hotel. The five-star property offers ample fine dining options as well as gourmet pub cuisine. Each guest room is fully equipped with LED TV, WiFi, mini bar, iron and ironing board and much more. Guests can enjoy a relaxing massage or dip in the indoor pool before sipping on a cocktail in the onsite bar.

Reviews

Travellers have rated this tour as 4.5 out of 5 based on 12 recent reviews

1  |  2

We both loved the tour. Well organised, good hotels, good amount of time at all the sites and Feng was an amazing tour guide. She made it all so easy and fun. Feng was the best tour guide we've had with On the Go so far and we have been on a few tours. The Great Wall was our highlight, but we enjoyed the cultural activities and other sites immensely.

• Submitted 20 Jan 2018
Tour
Guide
Country

The tour was fantastic - our group were all like minded and we got along very well! For the majority of us, it was a first time visit to China, so was great to experience everything together for the first time! All the hotels were in very good locations, were clean & comfortable, and the included breakfasts always had a wide variety of both western & Asian meal options. The coaches used in each city were clean and comfortable and offered plenty of space for our group of 20.Our guide Stefanie was truly amazing and she really made the trip all the more memorable!! She explained everything clearly and concisely, was always available to offer assistance and guidance on anything that was needed. This was a thoroughly enjoyable trip and one that I will remember for a long time! Thank you for an amazing experience!

• Submitted 09 Jan 2017
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Guide
Country

I was delighted with both my tour and our guides. The entire trip exceeded my expectations. One of the many winning features of an On The Go trip is the easy, relaxed and reassuring manner with which the guides dealt with any unexpected occurrences. I particularly enjoyed the schedule as there was a superb balance throughout the trip which allowed us as a group to see everything whilst also giving us free time to enjoy places on our own but always with the safe knowledge that Feng was never far away. I cannot recommend this tour enough for anyone who wants to travel with the very best tour operator available today.

• Submitted 12 Jan 2016
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Guide
Country

We had an fantastic trip. The accommodations were very nice and the transportation was comfortable. The information we received from On The Go Tours before the trip was very helpful and prepared us for what we needed.

Our Tour Guide (Feng) was the very best part of the trip. Our luggage was delayed for 5 days due to the Air Carrier. However, it would have been so much worse had not Feng intervened. She went way above any normal help. She personally made the arrangements so that when our luggage arrived in Beijing it was immediately put aboard another aircraft and sent to the city we were in. Then she arranged to have it sent to our hotel. She also was a wealth of information about China. All the guides spoke excellent English, friendly and eager to answer questions. We will definitely be using On The Go Tours again.

• Submitted 09 Jan 2016
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Guide
Country

Stephanie was very good, everything was organised well. She was always accessible.

• Submitted 05 Feb 2015
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Guide
Country

We had a fantastic time and would highly recommend On The Go Tours. Our guide Feng was amazing, a credit to the company and really made the trip special. Feng was knowledgeable , calm and organised and although we were quite a mixed group, she ensured that we were all happy (not just ma ma hu hu!) all of the time. The local guides Joe in Luoyang and Benny in Xi'an were also great and Stephanie who was in charge of the other group was lovely.

The tour itself ensured that we had a real taste of China with a good balance of culture and fun. It is quite a packed itinerary, so not a relaxing trip, but you certainly make the most of your time there. The only comments we have would be that it was a shame that the hotels in Luoyang and Xi'an did not have a proper bar area for the group to meet up and relax in the evenings. Also the hotel in Harbin was so lovely it would have been much better to have had our new Year's Eve meal there.

Many thanks to all involved!

• Submitted 15 Jan 2015
Tour
Guide
Country

Our tour guide was great however I did feel that time at some of the attractions could have been less and therefore we could have fitted in other things. ie To long at the grottos and teracotta warriors however when have loved to have seen the light show in xian.

• Submitted 08 Jan 2015
Tour
Guide
Country

This tour is such a cultural shock with people spitting everywhere , even on the floor of restaurants. The pollution is overwhelming, but traveling to foreign countries these all add to the experience. Like it or not this is the way of the local people.

Our tour guide Fung was fabulous. enough cannot be said to praise her enough. she went out of her way as most of the tour group was ill at some stage and she escorted them to a chemist for medicine and even a tour member to hospital.

As a train buff I was excited about the high speed trains and was not disappointed. they were fantastic. I would go back just to travel on them again.

Benny in Xian was a particular highlight as he was animated and made that part of our trip so enjoyable i would have been happy to stay in Xian longer. Whatever is done don't remove the bike ride on the wall in Xian as this was a favourite of most of our group.

I must say the tour was very enjoyable but did not follow the itinerary as represented in the brochure. This was not the same as our Vietnam tour where the problems were weather related, but the we felt the tour was misrepresented in regard to some or the activities .

Beijing - Luoyang. Opt for and early morning walk

through the local, market before we set off to see

the Summer Palace, set on Kunming Lake "Didn't happen, wasn't offered. My wife was looking forward to this excursion

New Years Eve was a major disappointment as the only celebrations were drinks in the hotel lobby bar.

"Before the stroke of midnight

we will take a prized position our hotel bar. Ring

in the new year with plenty of lights, ice and ‘local

Maitai firewater spirit’.

Apart from the hotel bar there were no lights, the only ice was in the 'ice bar 'outside.

there was a drinks/nibbles package on offer that was so poorly explained no one in our group took advantage of it. it was only when speaking to the other group "Stephanie" that we realized we missed out on a fairly good deal.. I understand that this tour is a once a year trip but surely the content and the ability of the guide , who has done the trip before should be suitable. .

Our local guide in Harbin "Suzie" was hopeless. A very poor grasp of English and had no interaction with the passengers and spoke as if she was reading from a set script.

Apart from my complaint i wouldn't hesitate to recommend this trip as it was a once in a lifetime experience. If the brochure was suitably amended to show the true tour, guides vetted to ensure they have at least some personality and grasp of English and costs explained instead of hidden extras then it would be wonderful experience without complaint.

• Submitted 07 Jan 2015
Tour
Guide
Country

Fung was an amazing tour guide. She was extremly knowledgable, always had a smile on her face, and nothing was too much trouble if we asked. She definately made the tour

• Submitted 06 Jan 2015
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Guide
Country

Stephanie was truly amazing - without her, the holiday would definitely not be the superb trip that it was. Not only was she intelligent, supremely fluent in English and extraordinarily helpful and informative, she was funny, kind, caring, knowing, discreet and a true ambassador for China and On the Go tours.

• Submitted 06 Jan 2015
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In Brief

Range
Trip Type
Starts
Beijing
Ends
Beijing
Departs
23 Dec 2018
Hotel Rating
3 - 5 star
Local Payment
None
Tour Guide
Yes - escorted by a tour guide
Meals
Breakfast: 10, Lunch: 2, Dinner: 4
Visiting
Countries

Tour Add-ons

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USD $525 / 3 days
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We both loved the tour. Well organised, good hotels, good amount of time at all the sites and Feng was an amazing tour guide. She made it all so easy and fun. Feng was the best tour guide we've had with On the Go so far and we have been on a few tours. The Great Wall was our highlight, but we enjoyed the cultural activities and other sites immensely.

Rachel Westgarth
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