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China - Legendary Yangtze River
Overview Itinerary Dates & Rates Extension Visa
Detail Itinerary
Day 1 Depart USA for Beijing, China.
Day 2 Arrive in Beijing
Your tour of one of the most fascinating countries in the world begins in Beijing, the capital of the People’s Republic of China. An English-speaking guide will meet you at the airport, drive you to your hotel and help you check in
Day 3 Beijing B,L,D,
Your adventure begins in Tiananmen Square, the heart of Beijing and the largest public space on earth. Step back in time as you pass through the Gate of Heavenly Peace and enter the Forbidden City, home to the Imperial Courts of the Ming and Qing Dynasties for more than 500 years. The Forbidden City is an enormous complex of perfectly preserved palaces, temples, magnificent squares and formal gardens. You’ll stroll down cobblestone paths once known only to the Emperor’s most intimate advisors, visit the private chambers of Imperial concubines and see stunning collections of priceless art, furnishings, and jewelry. After lunch you’ll visit the Summer Palace, a fairyland of pagodas, pavilions and stone bridges on the outskirts of the city; and you will cruise on the Kunming Lake. Next, you will visit the Pandas Garden in Beijing Zoo.
Day 4 Beijing B,L,D,
Today you’ll start your day by visiting the iconic “Beijing 2008 Olympic Center”. After taking pictures of the Bird’s Nest and Water Cube, you’ll leave the bustle and traffic of Beijing behind and journey through the countryside to see one of the Wonders of the World – The Great Wall. There will be plenty of time to walk along a portion of this 3700 mile long marvel or to simply sit and contemplate the wonders of China’s past. After lunch you’ll visit the massive tomb complex of the Ming Emperors where you’ll walk along the “Sacred Way” passing between pairs of huge stone sculptures. If time permits, you’ll visit a jade carving factory and observe the skilled artisans at work as they create intricate designs. This evening, you will enjoy Peking Opera after dinner.
Day 5 Beijing B,L,SD
This morning you’ll visit the Temple of Heaven, one of China’s most photographed attractions. This ornate wooden structure was where the “Sons of Heaven”, as the Chinese Emperors were known, worshiped the gods and prayed for good harvests. It is the largest temple complex in China and the lovely park surrounding the ancient tower is a popular spot for morning Tai Chi. Forget about the skyscrapers and construction cranes of modern Beijing as you explore a Hutong neighborhood, where the atmosphere of Old Peking lives on. You’ll bicycle or ride rickshaws down narrow lanes and alleyways, past vegetable markets, traditional medicine shops and tiny, wooden teahouses. If time permits, you’ll visit a pearl workshop. This evening you’ll enjoy the capital’s most famous dining experience - Peking Duck Dinner.
Day 6 Beijing / Xi'an B,L,D,
Take a short, two-hour flight to Xi'an, Imperial Capital of the Tang Dynasty and eastern border of the fabled Silk Road, a city with a long tradition of welcoming foreign visitors. You’ll begin your visit with a tour of the Big Wild Goose Pagoda, built in 652 AD to house Buddhist scriptures from India. You’ll stroll through Xi'an’s bustling markets and visit the Provincial History Museum where you’ll see artifacts from the Paleolithic period, priceless Tang Dynasty bronzes and treasures from the Silk Road caravans.
Day 7 Xi'an B,L,SD
Today you’ll visit the astonishing excavation site of the Terracotta Warriors. More than 6000 soldiers, ministers, and horses, each individually sculpted from a real life model, stand guarding Emperor Qin Shi Huang’s still unopened tomb. You’ll have plenty of time to explore the site, get a good look at the warriors from various vantage points and visit this excellent museum. On the way back to the city, you’ll visit the Ceramics and Pottery Center. Tonight you’ll celebrate Xi'an’s rich history with dinner and entertainment; enjoy the magnificent Tang Dynasty Show while sampling the regional specialty – Xi'an dumplings.
Day 8 Xian / Yichang B,L,D,
Fly to Yichang. After a short city tour, you'll aboard the M.V. Paradise and later set sail at midnight on the Yangtze - the third longest river in the world, bounding for the magnificent, wild scenery of the Three Gorges (Xiling, Wu, and Qutang Gorges) and the New Dam construction site.
Day 9 Yangtze River Cruising B,L,D,
The ship sails into the picturesque Xiling Gorges and passes through the gigantic Three Gorges Dam. You’ll take an excursion to Yangtze River Dam site, the largest hydroelectric dam in the world. Return to the ship and continue sail through miles of stunning gorges.
Day 10 Yangtze River Cruising B,L,D,
Today you will arrive at Badong where you'll disembark for a magical excursion to the fabled Less Three Gorges along the Shennong Stream. Get ready to be pulled in wooden sampans by local trackers through awesome gorges and lush pine forests. Along the way you'll see the remnants of ancient roads and pass cliff-top grottoes that held the coffins of warriors. You'll see translucent pools, aquatic caves, and rainbow fountains. If you're lucky, you'll get a glimpse of rare animals, such as the golden-haired monkey.
Day 11 Fengdu Ghost City B,L,D,
You cruise ship will arrive at Fengu today. Known as the “Abode of Devils”, Fengdu and nearby Pingdu Mountain attracts tourists with its temples and shrines dedicated to the gods of underworld. Within, instruments of torture and wild demon images are displayed. Alternative excursion: Shibaozai Pagoda. Shibaobai Pagoda on the cliff has always been regarded as a pear along the river for praying for good luck since the ancient time.
Day 12 Chongqing - Dazu B,L,D,
You will disembark in the morning in Chongqing, the city with the largest population in China. Then you will be driven to Dazu, where you will marvel at an exceptional series of rock carvings dating from the 9th to the 13th century. These rock carvings are remarkable for their aesthetic quality, their rich diversity of subject matter, both secular and religious, and the light that they shed on everyday life in China during this period. They provide outstanding evidence of the harmonious synthesis of Buddhism, Taoism and Confucianism.
Day 13 Chongqing – Guilin B,L,D,
You'll take a city tour of Chongqing before flying to Guilin, a small city nestled among undulating, green hills in southern China. Guilin’s picturesque, mystical landscape has inspired generations of painters and poets. The gumdrop hills and misty limestone pinnacles have romantic names such as the Peak of Solitary Beauty and the Mountain of Piled Silks. You will first visit the Reed Flute Cave, an underground crystal palace. You will then tour the Piled Silk Hill to discover the old small temples and grottoes and have a panoramic view of the beautiful landscape of Guilin.
Day 14 Guilin B,L,D,
A highlight of any trip to China is the Li River cruise which passes through some of the most dramatic and beautiful scenery on earth. Simply relax and enjoy the views as you slowly wind your way through rain-washed valleys, past bright green rice paddies, through bamboo forests, and beneath towering cliffs. In the afternoon, you will arrive at Yangshuo where you can stroll along the streets and visit the local markets. Transfer back to Guilin and visit an art gallery. Then you may take a walk along the Old Rocky Lake, Banyan Lake, and Cedarn Lake in front of your hotel. There are many historical sites for you to explore, including the garden of Solitary Beauty Peak and Elephant Trunk Hill.
Day 15 Guilin / Shanghai B,
Fly to Shanghai, China’s most cosmopolitan city and the most dynamic city in Asia. An English-speaking tour guide will meet you at the airport and escort you to your hotel. In the afternoon, you will visit the Bund, the city’s lively waterfront, and see the remains of the banks and other colonial institutions of the 19th century. Afterwards, you will visit Xintiandi, a trendy, boutique area where fashion and tradition co-exist. The small pubs, bars and restaurants in western style hidden inside the narrow lanes usually open in the late afternoon or in the evening.
Day 16 Shanghai B,L,D,
Today you’ll revisit Shanghai’s past as you visit the Old Downtown and classical Yu Garden. Old Downtown has many narrow zigzag lanes, small squares, fins ponds and pavilions. There are many local bars, restaurants, tea houses and souvenir shops. Built 400 years ago, Yu Garden is a famous ancient private garden with architectures of Ming and Qing dynasties. Owing to its ingenious design, it became a museum of typical Chinese ancient architecture. You will see vivid brick-carving figures of warlords and warriors, unique animal statues standing on the roofs of ancient buildings and the huge dragons decorated on the walls. In the afternoon, you will visit the fascinating Shanghai Museum to see artifacts from every period of China’s past. Next, you will take a short waling tour at People’s Square, where you can find some of the best collection of modern architecture. If time permits, you’ll tour a carpet factory. After dinner, you’ll attend a thrilling acrobatic show.
Day 17 Shanghai World Expo B,L,
Today’s highlight is a visit to Shanghai World Expo. (May 1 – Oct. 31). Before and after Shanghai Expo (Before May 1 and after Oct. 31), you will take an excursion to Zhujiajao, a well-preserved, traditional river town with lovely water views, ancient arched stone bridges and elegant gardens. After lunch, you’ll return to Shanghai and visit Jade Buddha Temple. The rest of the day is free at leisure.
Day 18 Shanghai B,
Bid farewell to Shanghai. You’ll be transferred to the airport for your flight home