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Highlights of China Tour

14 Days

This two week tour of China incorporates the “must see” historic sites in the major cities, a Panda sanctuary in the South West, the stunning country side of Guilin, the intimate artistic beauty of Suzhou and the modern metropolis of Shanghai.

    • Temple of Heaven
    • China Tour Hutong
    • China-Tour-Great-Wall-Mutianyu
    • China Tour Leshan Giant Buddha
    • Highlights of China Tour Dragons Backbone
    • Highlights of China Tour Panda Sanctuary
    • Highlights of China Tour Terracotta Army
    • Highlights of China Tour Suzhou Garden
    • Highlights of China Tour Big Goose Pagoda
    • Highlights of China Tour Li River Guilin

    As one of the more popular China tours in our series, this itinerary brings together some of the most famous sights and locations as well as the remote rural beauty of Guilin. From the Imperial grandeur of the Forbidden City and Great Wall, or the magnificent Terracotta Army, to a protected Panda reserve, the lush green farmland of Longsheng or the ancient gardens of Suzhou, this itinerary is an excellent choice for first time visitors to China. Whether you’re relaxing on a cruise on the Li River whilst sailing through the limestone karst peaks to Yangshuo or enjoying the excitement and energy of Shanghai, this tour has something for everybody.

    Price includes
    Return international flights;
    Accommodation as listed on itinerary (twin/double share);
    All domestic flights and land transportation;
    All excursions and sight-seeing entrance fees;
    Meals as listed (B, L, D);
    Taxes and surcharges

    Price excludes
    Single supplement where applicable (from £385)
    Travel Insurance;
    Chinese Visas (we can provide this service for £90)
    Tips and gratuities

    Please follow this link to see our complete range of China Tours and Holidays

    route map


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  • Day 1: UK – Beijing (Meals on board)

    Your tour of China begins with an overnight scheduled flight to Beijing. For those who may experience jet lag, we recommend adding a pre-tour night in Beijing for a refreshing start to your holiday – from £39 per person (including breakfast). We can also offer flight upgrades, please enquire for options and supplement prices.

    Day 2: Beijing (Meals on board, D)

    Upon arrival into Beijing, you will be greeted by our tour manager and transferred to your hotel. Later in the day, there will be a relaxing cyclo-rickshaw ride through the traditional old city alleyways known as the Hutongs.

    This evening there will be a warm welcome dinner of contemporary Chinese cuisine at a stylish restaurant.

    Day 3: Beijing (B, L, D)

    Your day begins with a morning stroll through Tiananmen Square, before passing through Tiananmen Gate and entering the Forbidden City. There will be an opportunity to view the main palace halls as well as some of the smaller, more intimate courtyards where the Imperial Family used to live. The royal theme continues with a stunning lunch of Imperial Cuisine – special dishes that were once only prepared for the Emperor and his family.

    In the afternoon you will move on to the Temple of Heaven, where it was once believed the Emperor would commune directly with the gods. There will also be time in the surrounding park where local Beijingers now gather to play games and music, dance and sing, or just chat about everyday life. This evening’s dinner will feature traditional Beijing cuisine including the famous Peking duck.

    Day 4: Beijing (B, L)

    This morning, you will travel north to a lesser known section of the Great Wall. Avoiding the crowds of tourists, you will have plenty of time to quietly explore this more remote location of the ancient boundary. Lunch will be served in a nearby village before returning to the outskirts of the city and the Summer Palace, where the Emperors once resided to escape the intense heat of the Forbidden City in the summer months.

    On the way back to the hotel, we stop by the site of the 2008 Beijing Olympics, where you will see the famous Birds Nest Stadium and Water Cube. This evening there will be free time to rest and pack for tomorrow’s journey or the option of dinner and a famous Kungfu Show.

    Day 5: Beijing – Xian (B, D)

    Breakfast and check out is followed by a short flight to Xian. This city was the centre of the Chinese Empire for many centuries and the best place to see China’s ancient history. On arrival, we visit the Big Wild Goose Pagoda before checking into our hotel. After some time to relax, we will visit the Bell Tower – which used to tell the time for the whole city. From here, there will be a short walk to one of China’s most famous dumpling restaurants for a magnificent Dumpling Banquet.

    Day 6: Xian (B, L)

    After breakfast, we travel out to the world famous Terracotta Army that guards the eternal resting place of China’s first Emperor. There will be time to view the three main excavation sites as well as the museum before a buffet lunch at the site’s best restaurant. On the way back to the city, we stop by a work shop where craftsmen make replica statues as souvenirs. Once back in Xian, you will visit the traditional Moslem Quarter of the city. The origins of this community date back to the ancient silk traders who migrated from the Middle East and it may feel as if you have wondered into a back street of Cairo! If time permits you will stop by the Chinese Mosque at the heart of this district, which looks more like a Taoist Temple, before returning to your hotel.

    This evening there will be free time to rest and pack for tomorrow’s journey or the option of dinner and a theatre show of traditional Chinese music and dance.

    Day 7: Xian – Chengdu (B, L, D)

    After breakfast and check out, we take a morning flight to Chengdu. On arrival we travel directly to Leshan to view the Grand Buddha. This giant statue is the largest of its kind; carved out of the natural cliff face, it took over a century to complete. After exploring the statue and surrounding area, we return to Chengdu. There will be time to freshen up at the hotel before this evening’s dinner of traditional Sichuan Hot Pot. Sichuan Hot Pots are famous for their fiery spices and a milder alternative will be available for those who prefer.

    Day 8: Chengdu – Guilin (B, L)

    This morning we visit the world famous Panda Breeding Research Institute, a sanctuary dedicated to the preservation of this unique species. We will view both the Giant and Red Panda enclosures, the nursery and the visitors centre. There will also be the opportunity to explore the wider enclosures and gardens on your own.  From here we head to the Wenshu Temple for a delicious vegetarian lunch. Afternoon tea in a local tea house is followed a flight to Guilin. On arrival into Guilin, transfer to your hotel. Free time for the rest of the day.

    Day 9: Guilin (B, L, D)

    After breakfast, we travel to the Longsheng (Dragon’s Backbone) Rice Terraces, a beautiful collection of paddy fields cultivated on the mountain sides and home to a mixture of Zhuang and Miao minority peoples. After exploring the surrounding hillsides, lunch will be served in a local family restaurant, before we return to the city and check in to our hotel. After some time to freshen up, we visit the Reed Flute Caves. Dinner will be followed by an evening demonstration of Cormorant Fishing.


    Day 10: Li River Cruise – Yangshuo (B, L)

    After a leisurely breakfast and check-out we transfer to the ferry wharf and board our cruise down the Li River. We will sail directly through some of the most stunning mountain scenery that Guilin has to offer. A lunch of local produce will be served on board as you meander towards the charming town of Yangshuo. On arrival, we transfer to our hotel conveniently located near the bustling hub of West Street. The rest of the day will be free at leisure for you to explore the local market places and shops.

    In the evening there will be and optional excursion to see the spectacular Impressions Show. This stunning performance of sound, light and music takes place on the river with the mountains as a natural back drop.

    Day 11: Yangshuo – Shanghai (B, L – with cookery class)

    This morning, there will be the option of a cookery class that includes a trip a local food market and lunch. Experience the hustle and bustle of locals bartering for their daily shop before learning more about traditional Chinese cooking methods. For those who prefer something a little more laid back, a bicycle ride (or motor buggy trip) into the local country side will be arranged.

    In the afternoon, we transfer back to Guilin Airport and fly to Shanghai. On arrival, transfer to the hotel where there will be leisure time for the rest of the day.

    Day 12: Shanghai (B, L, D)

    After breakfast, there will be a morning stroll along the Bund, featuring a look the old HSBC building with its beautifully preserved colonial architecture and the Shanghai Gallery of Modern Art to view works by some of China’s most cutting edge contemporary artists. After some free time to explore the waterfront, we move on to the Urban Planning Exhibition Hall where a giant scale model depicts the city in 2020.

    After a lunch of traditional Shanghai Dimsum, we head to the lively Yuyuan Bazaar where there will be free time to hunt for bargains and barter with local street sellers.  After time to freshen up at the hotel, a dinner of Shanghai cuisine is followed by a night time cruise along the Huangpu River, where you’ll have the best view of the glittering lights of Pudong – Shanghai’s stunning modern skyline.

    Day 13: Suzhou/ Shanghai (B, L, D)

    An ancient city built on a system of canals, Suzhou is famous as the home of high culture, beautiful gardens and fine silk. Today we will discover all three. The day begins with a stroll through the traditional buildings of the Pingjiang District before taking a canal boat to the Humble Administrators Garden.

    After lunch, we travel to the NO.1 Silk Factory where we’ll view ancient and modern silk weaving and learn more about the process of transforming the cocoons of humble silkworms into some of the finest materials in the world.

    From here, we return to ultra-modern Shanghai for a farewell dinner. After dinner we head to the vibrant night life of the former French Concession. Following a brief tour of the most popular area of Xintiandi, you will have the option to head back to the hotel or stay and enjoy a drink or two at one of the sophisticated wine bars.

    Day 14: Shanghai – Home (B, meals on board)

    Today, you bid farewell to China with a transfer to the airport for your return flight home.

    Not ready to leave? Extra nights in Shanghai start at £39 per person (including breakfast)or you can choose from our range of exciting extension options….


    Beijing: 5* Chang’an Grand Hotel
    Xian: 5* Days Hotel and Suites
    Chengdu: 4* Eastar Hotel
    Guilin: 4+* Bravo Hotel or 4* Plaza Hotel and 4* New Century Hotel
    Shanghai: 4+* Ambassador



    Please don't hesitate to contact us about this tour
    Make an Enquiry

  • Depart UK Arrive UK Price pp from Book
    23/05/2015 05/06/2015 £2625
    13/06/2015 26/06/2015 £2595
    25/07/2015 07/08/2015 £2795
    01/08/2015 14/08/2015 £2795
    05/09/2015 18/09/2015 £2725
    19/09/2015 02/10/2015 £2725
    10/10/2015 23/10/2015 £2725
    17/10/2015 30/10/2015 £2725
    05/11/2015 18/11/2015 £2389
    19/03/2016 01/04/2016 £2695 *Easter Departure*
    16/04/2016 29/04/2016 £2675
    14/05/2016 27/05/2016 £2675
    11/06/2016 24/06/2016 £2595
    30/07/2016 12/08/2016 £2835
    06/08/2016 05/08/2016 £2835
    10/09/2016 23/09/2016 £2795
    08/10/2016 21/10/2016 £2795
    22/10/2016 04/11/2016 £2755
    10/11/2016 23/11/2016 £2399
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