Travellers can discover the gems of China during this 16-night tour visiting Xi’an, Suzhou, Shanghai, and Beijing, the country’s capital city and heartland. Holidaymakers will have the opportunity to admire the great Terracotta Army, walk along The Great Wall of China and see how the tea is picked at the local tea plantations. The tour will lead participants through ancient sites, modern streets and natural landscapes alike. In the lakeside town of Suzhou, travellers will be able to soak in a slower-paced atmosphere than that of the bustling cities of Shanghai and Beijing. Travellers are also invited to board a cruise to sail along the iconic River Yangtze, visit Three Gorges Dam Site, and indulge in the scenic views of the river banks.
- Day 1: Xi’an Arrival
Upon arrival at Xi’an airport, be met by the tour guide and escorted to the hotel for an overnight stay. Xi’an, one of the oldest cities in China, is known for a significant amount of ancient relics and it is recognised as the starting point of the famous Silk Road and where the towering Terracotta Army can be found.
- Day 2 (breakfast and lunch): Wild Goose Pagoda, Ancient City Walls
While in Xi’an, visit the Wild Goose Pagoda, explore the Ancient City Wall (one of the oldest and best-preserved city walls in all of China) and choose to enjoy some leisure time or join the optional Tang Dynasty Show Performance and Dumpling Banquet.
- Day 3 (breakfast): Terracotta Warriors, Moslem Street
Enjoy the full day at leisure or join the optional Terracotta Warriors tour to explore the historic army of over 7,000 soldiers, archers, horses and chariots that has guarded Emperor Qin’s tomb since 210BC. Participants of the tour will be also able to walk through the well-known Moslem Street, famous for food and souvenirs.
- Day 4 (breakfast): Xi’an to Beijing
Be transferred from Xi’an to Beijing, the capital city of China. On arrival, be escorted to the hotel for an overnight stay.
- Day 5 (breakfast): Beijing - Leisure Day
Enjoy a leisure day in Beijing or participate in an optional visit to the Summer Palace, the largest royal park in China and a UNESCO world heritage site.
- Day 6 (breakfast): Beijing –Tiananmen Square and Forbidden City and Hutong Tour
Choose to explore Beijing on your own or join a selection of optional tours with the experienced local guide. The tours include: Tiananmen Square and Forbidden City that allows discovering Beijing’s imperial treasures, and Hutong Tour that takes guests to the traditional Hutong areas, famous for the old-style buildings and old workshops.
- Day 7 (breakfast, lunch and dinner): The Great Wall and Olympic Games Sites
Travel north of the city to discover the famous Great Wall of China and enjoy the panoramic views of the mountain landscapes. Later that day learn about jade, China’s most precious stone, and its manufacturing process at the largest jade factory in Beijing, and head to visit the 2008 Olympic Games Sites including the Bird’s Nest and Water Cube. After the day of exploring, indulge in a complementary oriental foot massage at a traditional Chinese medical centre.
- Day 8 (breakfast): Beijing, Temple of Heaven, Beijing
In the morning, enjoy some leisure time or participate in a tour of the Temple of Heaven and practice the martial art of Tai Chi. Later this afternoon be transferred to Hangzhou via bullet train.
- Day 9 (breakfast and lunch): West Lake, Tea Village
Embark on a tour of Hangzhou city, renowned for its beauty and abundance of cultural heritage. Then visit the West Lake area in Hangzhou. While in the West Lake area, visit the tea plantation and learn about tea picking and processing. In the evening, choose to attend the optional Romance of Song Dynasty Show featuring colourful costumes dancing, acting and acrobatics.
- Day 10 (breakfast and lunch): Master of Nets Garden
Be transferred from Hangzhou to Suzhou via bus. Upon arrival, explore the Master of the Nets Garden, one of the finest gardens in China. After lunch, take an optional boat trip along the longest canal in the world, Suzhou’s Grand Canal.
- Day 11 (breakfast, lunch and dinner): Suzhou to Shanghai - Nanjing walking district, The Bund
Before being transferred to Shanghai via bus, spend the morning exploring the most famous silk factory in China to understand the manufacturing processes of silk and its rich history in the country. Upon arrival in Shanghai, visit the Nanjing walking district and discover the history and culture of the city. Then continue to the Bund by the Huangpu River. Enjoy an optional evening on the Huangpu River Cruise.
- Day 12 (breakfast): Shanghai – Leisure Day
Spend the day exploring Shanghai and relaxing, alternatively embark on an optional city tour.
- Day 13 (breakfast and dinner): Shanghai to Yichang
Be transferred from Shanghai to Yichang by high-speed train. Upon arrival, board the Yangtze River Cruise ship and settle in before departure the next day.
- Day 14 (breakfast, lunch and dinner): Yangtze River Cruise, Three Gorges Dam
Enjoy a breakfast buffet before setting out on the first optional shore excursion to the Three Gorges Project. The Three Gorges Dam is one of the largest construction projects undertaken by mankind and is the biggest hydropower project in the world. In the evening attend the Captain’s Welcome Banquet and enjoy some dancing.
- Day 15 (breakfast, lunch and dinner): Yangtze River Cruise, Shennong Stream
Choose to enjoy an optional shore excursion to the Shennong Stream that flows through three gorges including the Mianzhu Gorge, Parrot Gorge and Longcangdong Gorge. Another excursion choice for today is a visit to the White Emperor City, the ancient temple that is located atop Baidi Mountain. After returning to the ship, enjoy lunch and the crew’s performance in the evening.
- Day 16 (breakfast, lunch and dinner): Yangtze River Cruise, Shibaozhai
Embark on an optional shore excursion to the legendary Shibaozhai, the pagoda built into the side of a 200-meter-tall hill. Alternatively, join an excursion of the Fengdu Ghost City which is also known as the “City of Ghosts”. In the evening, enjoy the farewell dinner and prepare to disembark the cruise the next day.
- Days 17 and 18 (breakfast): Chongqing Departure
Disembark the cruise ship and be transferred to Chongqing International Airport for the scheduled flight home.