Day 1: New Zealand – – Chengdu
Your China holiday will begin with an international flight to Chengdu. Upon arrival at Chengdu Airport, you will be met by your tour guide and escorted to your hotel. The city of Chengdu is famed for its cuisine, particularly for its spicy Sichuan peppercorns. Take some time to relax and prepare for your full day tour tomorrow.
Day 2: Chengdu (B,L)
Today you will begin with a visit to the Chengdu Research Base of Giant Panda Breeding. The Panda Breeding Centre first opened in 1987 and is a semi-wild area where the pandas are able to roam freely. You will then visit the Jinli Old Street, which was originally built as a commercial street during the Shu Kingdom (221 A.D.263 A.D.) and then adopted the traditional architectural style of Sichuan Province during the Qing Dynasty (1644-1911). Jinli Old Street combines the essence of stepping back in time.
Optional Tour (additional cost applies): Sichuan Opera – Enjoy an evening of Sichuan Opera, which is an important part of Chengdu culture. In addition to singing and martial arts, Sichuan Opera has many unique features that set it apart such as fire breathing, changing faces and juggling pottery.
Day 3: Chengdu – Yichang (B,D)
Today you will be transferred from Chengdu to Yichang by high-speed train. Upon arrival, you will board the Yangtze River Cruise ship and begin your memorable 4-night cruise down the Yangtze River.
Day 4: Yangtze River Cruise (B,L,D)
Today’s activities include; a morning Tai Chi lesson and a shore excursion to the Three Gorges Dam Site. The Three Gorges Dam Site is one of the largest construction projects undertaken by mankind and is the biggest hydropower project in the world. You may also want to visit the Tribe of the Three Gorges, the only large scenic spot that has not been influenced by the Three Gorged Dam project, which showcase the abundant Ba Culture and Shu Culture. This evening you will return to the ship and attend the Captain’s Welcome Banquet and enjoy the evening entertainment with a Chinese dancing ball.
Optional Tour (at own expense): the Tribe of the Three Gorges.
Day 5: Yangtze River Cruise (B,L,D)
Today will join a shore excursion to Lesser Three Gorges ( Gold Cruises) or Shennong Stream ( President Cruises) – a shining pearl hidden in remote mountains. You will leave your cruise ship and board smaller vessels to sail through the narrower and breathtaking region, lined by sheer cliffs and mountains. Along the Yangtze River you will appreciate the beauty of the Qutang Gorge and Wu Gorge and visit the ancient plank road, Mengliang Stairway and the Hanging Coffins. You may also want to visit the White Emperor City, an ancient temple that is located atop Baidi Mountain on the northern bank of the Yangtze River in Fengjie County. You will then return to the ship and continue sailing into the western section of Xiling Gorge.
Optional Tour (at own expense): White Emperor City
Day 6: Yangtze River Cruise (B,L,D)
Today will visit the Fengdu Ghost City ( Gold Cruises) or Shibaozhai pogoda ( President Cruises) . Return to the ship and continue to pass through the mountains of Eastern Sichuan. Tonight, enjoy the farewell dinner and pack your bags in preparation for disembarking tomorrow.
Optional Tour (at own expense): Shibaozhai pogoda (Gold Cruises) or Fengdu Ghost City (President Cruises)
Day 7: Disembark cruise – Chongqing – – Xian (B)
Today you will be transferred from Chongqing to Xian by high-speed train. Upon arrival in Xian, you will be met by your tour guide and transferred to your hotel. The remainder of the evening is at leisure.
Day 8: Xian – Terra Cotta Warriors, Moslem street (B,L)
Today you will explore the ancient wonders of Xi’an. For a period of more than 1,000 years, Xi’an served as China’s capital city and remains home to a great number of precious relics and historical sites. Your tour today will include a visit to the Terracotta Warriors and the lively Moslem Street. The Terracotta Warriors Site is considered the eighth wonder of the world and was discovered by accident in 1974. You will see the army of over 7,000 soldiers, archers, horses and chariots that has guarded Emperor Qin’s tomb since 210BC. Each figure is unique, and the painstaking repair and evacuation continues to this day. After lunch, you will walk through the famous Moslem Street, where many souvenirs and delicious local snacks can be sampled. In the evening, you may choose to join the optional evening entertainment at the Tang Dynasty Dance Performance.
Day 9: Xian –– Beijing (B)
Today you will board a high-speed train to the capital city of Beijing. Upon arrival you will be met by your tour guide and transferred to your hotel. Take some time to relax and prepare for your full day tour tomorrow.
Day 10: Beijing – Tiananmen Square, Forbidden City (B,L)
After breakfast, set out with your trip leader to discover Beijing’s imperial treasures. Stand in Tiananmen Square, one of the largest and grandest public plazas in the world. Enter the imposing walls of the Forbidden City, once the exclusive domain of the Ming Dynasty, for an extensive tour through this vast complex. Afterwards, visit the Silk Factory Outlet to learn about silk, the very trade item which started the famous Silk Road, and its delicate manufacturing process.
Day 11: Beijing – The great Wall of China – 2008 Olympic games sites (B,L)
Today, you will travel into the rugged mountain landscapes north of the city to the magnificent Great Wall of China. Once on top of this ancient defensive structure, you’ll find that some sections are quite steep, but the views are magnificent, and the experience is truly unforgettable. You will then learn about Jade, China’s most precious and celebrated stone, and its manufacturing process at the largest Jade factory in Beijing. Furthermore, you will visit the 2008 Olympic Games Sites including the Bird’s Nest and Water Cube. Afterwards you will head back to the city to enjoy an oriental foot massage before returning to the hotel
Day 12: Beijing –– Shanghai (B)
In the morning, you could join an optional tour practice Tai Chi in the Temple of Heaven. Tai Chi is an internal martial art system which places emphasis on the development and control of Chi (consciousness) energy within the body. The Temple of Heaven a sprawling complex of religious buildings located in the south-eastern section of central Beijing. The site was constructed by the emperors of the Ming and Qing dynasties who would host annual ceremonies of prayer for good harvest here. In this afternoon you will be transferred to Shanghai by High Speed Train. Upon arrival at Shanghai you will be met by your tour guide and transferred to your hotel. Take some time to relax and prepare for your tour tomorrow.
Day 13: Shanghai – Nanjing walking district, The Bund (B,L)
Today you will discover China’s largest financial and commercial centre, visit the Shanghai Nanjing walking district and explore the Shanghai Museum to learn more of the local culture and history. Visit the Bund by the Huangpu River and experience the city where the old meets the new.
Optional Tour (additional cost applies): Huangpu River Cruise – Cruise along the Huangpu River, past many of Shanghai’s famous sites such as the People’s Hero Monuments, the Bund, the Oriental Pearl Tower, the bustling International Passenger Station of Shanghai Harbour, the docks, the Wu Song ancient gun fort relics and the impressive skyline of the Pu Dong business district.
Day 14: Shanghai –– Guilin (B,D)
Today we make our way to Guilin, one of the most beautiful destinations in China known for its dramatic landscape of limestone karst. Upon arrival at Guilin airport, you will be met by your guided and transferred to your hotel. Take some time to relax and prepare for your full day tomorrow in the Guilin province. Guilin, one of the most beautiful destinations in China known for its dramatic landscape of limestone karst.
Day 15: Guilin – Longji (B,L)
The terraces here resemble ribbons winding from the foot to the top of the mountain. The terraces were constructed using a unique design that requires no nails and is ideal in areas with limited arable land and water resources. At the top of the mountain you will be able to admire the Zhuang and Yao minority villages that dot the landscape below
Please note: The walk takes approximately 45 minutes over uneven terrain, uphill. It is very achievable for most fitness levels. If you prefer not to walk, alternative transport is available (payable locally).
Day 16: Guilin – Yangshuo (B,L)
An early start to today for the drive to Yangshuo – famous natural scenery and laid-back air. Travelling to Yangshuo can be a great escape from the pollution of China’s big cities. Enjoy a leisure afternoon or join our optional tour (additional cost applies): Enjoy araft boat experience to enjoy the most beautiful part of Li River and stop by a local fruit and vegetable market and glimpse the Chinese way of life as townspeople do their daily shopping. Visit a charming local farmer’s home, where many have lived for 12 generations. Then travel along the river, passing through several small villages on your way.
Optional Evening Entertainment (additional cost applies): Impression Sanjie Liu – is a performance that expresses the beautiful scenery of the Li River, the colourful culture of the ethnic groups in Guangxi and the brave imagination of the excellent artists in China. This large-scale performance consists of 600 plus actors and lasts for 70mins.
Day 17: Yangshuo –– Guangzhou (B)
After breakfast, transfer to Guilin train station for your scheduled high-speed train to Guangzhou. It’s known also as Canton, Guangzhou is the capital of Guangdong province and one of the most prosperous cities in China. The city is located at the north of the Pearl River delta, covering an area of over 16,000 square kilometres. It has a history of more than 2,800 years, with the longest history among the international trade port cities in the world.
Day 18: Guangzhou – Macau – Hong Kong (B)
After breakfast, we make our way to the glitz of Macau! Macau was a Portuguese overseas territory until 1999 and it reflects a mix of Portuguese and Chinese influences. Its giant casinos and extravagant malls have earned it the nickname, the “Las Vegas of Asia”. It is home to the world’s biggest casino, extravagant shopping malls and many delicious foods. Here you will have time to wander between the towering Casino’s or if you’re feeling lucky, try luck at the Casino tables. In the evening, you will be transferred to Hong Kong by ferry. Once here, you will have time to explore the beautiful island of Hong Kong at your own pace.
Day 19: Hong Kong (B)
Today is a free day to explore Hong Kong at your own pace. Famed for its tower-studded skyline. It’s also known for its lively food scene – from Cantonese dim sum to extravagant high tea – and its shopping, with options spanning chaotic Temple Street Night Market to the city’s innumerable bespoke tailors. Hong Kong really does have something for everyone!
Day 20: Hong Kong –– New Zealand (B)
Today you will be transferred to the airport by shuttle bus for your flight home. We hope you have enjoyed and unforgettable journey!
Day 21: New Zealand
Arrive home today.