- Visit the Chengdu panda research station and see China's popular bear close-up
- Relax in Yangshuo's serene countryside and peaceful Li River
- Hike the 7th-century Great Wall of China, one of the 7 Wonders of the World
- See the 7,000+ figures of the Qin Terracotta Warriors in Xi'an
|Day 1||Arrival / Beijing||Beijing|
|Day 4||Beijing / Xi'an||Xi'an|
|Day 6||Xi'an / Chengdu||Chengdu|
|Day 7||Chengdu / Guilin||Chengdu|
|Day 9||Guilin / Yangshuo||Yangshuo|
|Day 13||Shanghai / Departure|
Day 1: Arrival / Beijing
Welcome to Beijing! A tour representative will meet you at the airport and transfer you to the hotel. Settle in, then in the evening visit Wangfujing Street for dinner and drinks.
Day 2: Beijing
Your first stop today is the Temple of Heaven, which was used in rituals heald for the Winter Solstice Festival by emperors of the Ming and Qing dynasties. From here continue to historic Tiananmen Square, site of the famous 1989 protest and the central location for most current-day national ceremonies. From the square, you can walk to the adjacent Forbidden City for a full-day tour.
The largest imperial palace is most notable for its high red walls and the vast complex of golden-roofed buildings. For a fully immersive experience, join a famous Rickshaw Hutong Tour & Local Family Visit to see the hutongs—traditional alleyways—that characterize Beijing's old city. The rickshaw ride is a unique opportunity to see an old way of life and experience traditional Beijing culture, as well as to see the dramatic changes to the city's architecture through the centuries.
Day 3: Beijing
Today you will visit one of China's most famous sites—the Great Wall. The Mutianyu section of the wall is easily accessible from the Beijing city center and is popular with tourists. Built in the 7th century and repaired many times to protect the Chinese empire from invaders, the wall is an iconic part of China's history. Take the cable car up to the wall to tower 14, then walk down as you enjoy views of the surrounding hills.
In the afternoon take a Hutong tour near Houhai Lake to see Beijing from a local's perspective.
Day 4: Beijing / Xi'an
Transfer to the train station to catch a high-speed train to Xian, then transfer to your hotel. Visit Moslem Street in the Muslim Quarter of the city, located next to the Drum Tower, where a vibrant local market offers a wide selection of Chinese and Muslim food, goods, and gifts.
Day 5: Xian
Today you will visit the legendary Qin Terracotta Warriors, an army of more than 7,000 figures which guard the tomb of Qin Shi Huang, the first emperor of China. The incredible testament to Chinese military power was buried along with the emperor in 210-209 BCE and discovered by local farmers in 1974.
Afterward, drive back to the city and visit the Wild Goose Pagoda, which was built during the Tang Dynasty to store Buddhist scriptures from India. Tour the Bell Tower and Drum Tower, both symbols of Xian's history, then head out for dinner downtown.
Day 6: Xi'an / Chengdu
In the morning visit the South Gate Old City Wall to see the most complete city wall system left in China. Learn about the history and battles fought along the wall, which was used in one of the largest ancient military defense systems in the world. Continue to the Shanxi Historical Museum to see local and national treasures and history. In the afternoon head to the train station to catch a high-speed train to Chengdu.
Day 7: Chengdu / Guilin
After breakfast visit the Leshan Giant Buddha, which at 233 feet (71 meters) is the world's largest. The Buddha was built in 713 C.E. during the Tang Dynasty and is a top destination for tourists. On your way back stop and see the Huanglongxi Ancient Town to learn about local culture and history.
Day 8: Chengdu
Spend the morning visiting the Chengdu Panda Breeding Research Base, which is home to nearly 50 pandas. Tour the facility to learn about the breeding program and see the delivery room, then enjoy watching the pandas frolic and play with each other.
Afterward, head to the People's Square, where local parents come to pray for luck for their children to find partners and have families. Continue the city tour to a unique street paved with green stones, located to the east of the Temple of Wuhou to see old mansions, halls, inns, and shops. Enjoy a Sichuan lunch, tea, and explore the rich local culture.
Transfer to the airport and fly to Guilin.
Day 9: Guilin / Yangshuo
In the morning head out for a leisurely cruise of the beautiful Li River. Bamboo groves, teeth-like sharp hills that rise steeply from the water, calm water, and peaceful farms on the banks give the river a fairytale-like feeling. Disembark in the small town of Yangshuo and spend the afternoon exploring the tourist town. In the evening head to West Street to experience the mixed-culture nightlife.
Day 10: Yangshuo
Rent a bike and explore the Yangshuo countryside to enjoy the peaceful landscapes and see rural farms and rice paddies. Later head out onto the river on a traditional bamboo raft before returning to town for lunch. The afternoon is free for sightseeing, shopping, and simply relaxing.
Day 11: Yangshuo/Shanghai
Head to the Guilin airport for a local flight to Shanghai, where you will be met by a driver and guide. Head to the hotel to settle in and rest, then in the afternoon head out for some sightseeing and shopping. Grab dinner and drinks at a downtown restaurant and enjoy the nightlight in Shanghai.
Day 12: Shanghai
Start your city tour at the Oriental Pearl TV Tower, the best place for a panoramic view of the city, then continue to the 400-year-old Yu Garden and explore the pavilions, halls, ponds, and cloisters of this serene city oasis.
Later take a walk on Nanjing Road and The Bund to enjoy modern day life in Shanghai. End your day with an elevator ride up to the TV Tower for a panoramic view of the metropolitan city.
In the evening visit the French Concession, a pedestrian street with a traditional Shanghai Shikumen architectural style to enjoy shopping and dinner.
Day 13: Shanghai / Departure
Spend some free time in the morning finishing up last-minute shopping or sightseeing before transferring to the airport for your departing flight home. Safe travels!