Backroads to Beijing - 8 days
Take the road less travelled from Shanghai to Beijing. Explore the scintillating city of Shanghai and cultural Qufu, birthplace of Confucius. Cruise the picturesque waterways of Suzhou and admire the views from the summit of holy Mt Tai Shan. Visit a local village, meet the children of a kindergarten school, have lunch with a local family and more on this fascinating 8 day tour.
Saturday. Arrive into Shanghai airport where you will be met and transferred to your hotel. Spend the rest of the day at leisure.
Today we explore the cosmopolitan city of Shanghai. On our guided tour of the city we'll visit the iconic Oriental Pearl TV tower, Shanghai’s Bund, where on and around the waterfront promenade are a vast series of grandiose pre-1949 buildings, the picturesque Yuyuan Gardens and the Old City. This evening enjoy a cruise on the Huangpu River and admire Shanghai's incredible illuminated skyline.
Overnight: Shanghai | Breakfast
Shanghai - Suzhou - Shanghai - Qufu. Today we visit the picturesque and ancient city of Suzhou, which is reminiscent of Venice with its series of canals and pretty waterways. Here we enjoy a cruise on the Grand Canal and visit a silk workshop.
There’s plenty to see and do in Shanghai and day 4 is free for you to venture to the Old City, French Quarter or opt to shop along the famous Nanjing road. This evening we bunk down in our soft sleeper train cabins en route to Qufu.
Overnight: Shanghai (1) Sleeper Train to Qufu (1) | Breakfast x 2, Lunch x 1
This morning we arrive into Qufu, birthplace of Confucius and home to the remarkable Confucius Temple. With 466 rooms and over a kilometre long, the complex was built and dedicated to the Kong clan, descendants of the great sage, who lived here continuously for more than 2,500 years, spanning 77 generations. Today we explore the mansion and temple before taking a rickshaw ride around the city wall with a visit to the eerie Confucius forest. The forest is studded with tombs and graves of Kong family members dating back some centuries. This evening we take a stroll through the colourful night market.
Overnight: Qufu | Breakfast
Qufu – Bu Yang village - Mt Tai Shan – Jinan. This morning we take a short drive to Bu Yang Village. In this traditional village the principles of Communism, communal work and land ownership are somewhat still in place. Here's we'll enjoy a light lunch at Mr Peng’s (one of the party officials) home. Seated around the family’s low to the ground lazy Susan, Mrs Peng serves up local dishes and copious bottles of beer. This is a real taste of village life! A short stroll leads us to the village prep-school (our Change 4 Children project), where we'll visit the classroom to meet the children who will all be vying for our attention.
After our visit to the school we travel on to Mt Tai Shan, perhaps the holiest of the five Chinese holy mountains devoted to Taoism. Whilst flocks of pilgrims climb the 6000 or more steps to the summit, we will take the cable car. With stunning scenery and many ancient temples dotting the slopes we will visit Heaven Street, Cloud Bridge and the Jade Emperor’s temple. A short drive takes us to Jinan where we spend the night.
Overnight: Jinan | Breakfast, Lunch
Prices & Dates
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!
Ramada Wujiaochang Shanghai , Shanghai
Located within the Wujiaochang business district, this modern high-rise hotel boasts comfortable living. Guests can grab a drink at the lobby bar and dine in the on-site restaurant, or alternatively venture out into the city to find somewhere to local to eat. Guest rooms benefit from high-speed internet access and LCD TVs. There's also a gym, sauna, spa, shop and concierge for additional convenience. The Bund and People's Square, in the heart of Shanghai are less than 10km away as is the shopping haven of Nanjing Road.
Queli Hotel, Qufu
The Queli a sublime hotel that combines excellent service with a great location to ensure each guest a fantastic stay. Designed in traditional Shandong style, the beautiful complex blends with the ancient town of Qufu and boasts modern amenities including a business centre and a bar. Rooms are spacious and comfortable and have been decorated with a neutral colour scheme. The hotel is in the city centre, adjacent to the Confucius Temple and 16 km from the railway station.
Shungeng Hillview Hotel, Jinan
Situated at the foot of a mountain, this modern hotel sits amongst wonderful landscapes and offers splendidly decorated rooms with an array of mod-cons. The hotel has several restaurants, a bar, a health club featuring a sauna and fitness centre, and a number of other recreational facilities including bowling, tennis and billiards. Upon entering guests can marvel at the magnificent lobby before making their way to their spacious room. The hotel is 3km from the city centre, 6km from the railway station and 38km from the airport.
Yong An Hotel, Beijing
Just a 5 minute walk from the Agricultural Exhibition Centre, the Yong An hotel is a modern hotel with great amenities. Guest rooms are classically decorated with large windows allowing lots of natural light. The hotel has a restaurant that serves up both Chinese and western dishes. Complimentary wi-fi is available and the popular buzzing bar street is just a 15 minute taxi ride away.
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.
On The Go's Signature group tours place local interaction and authenticity at the heart of your cultural travel experience. Upping the comfort stakes, this range is a clear cut above our OTG Adventure range.
Appealing to a wide age demographic from the 20s to 60+, we maximize your days with excitement and awe and then bring you home to a comfortable 4* hotel with western amenities, air-conditioning, WiFi and, where appropriate, a swimming pool. Hotels can sometimes be of 3 or 5 star standard too, ensuring you get the best value for your holiday.
Visiting all the main attractions you’ll be accompanied throughout by our highly qualified English-speaking local guides too. Group size is typically 18 with a maximum for 28, apart from festival tours, where group sizes can be larger due to the one-off nature of these events.