Take an international flight from the US to Beijing, China. Meals and snacks will be served on the plane. Movies will also be available during the flight.
Upon arrival in Beijing, you will be met and transferred to your hotel by our tour guide. For those arriving in Beijing earlier today, you may spend the rest of the day for leisure or join in the optional tours (at an extra expense) in Beijing.
Today you will visit Tiananmen Square and the Forbidden City, the largest and most intact conglomeration of ancient structures of the imperial palace. This was the palace for 24 Ming and Qing Dynasty emperors who ruled China for over 500 years. Take a photo stop at the National Center for the Performing Arts, also known as the National Grand Theatre, designed by the French architect Paul Andreu. You will also tour the Summer Palace, the famous resort of Empress Dowager Ci Xi. Feast your eyes on the Long Corridor, Longevity Hill, and Kunming Lake. If time permits, you may also have the opportunity to see pandas at Beijing Zoo located nearby the Summer Palace. Attend a welcome Peking Duck Dinner tonight.
The highlight today is a trip to the astonishing Great Wall of China at Juyongguan Pass, one of the most remarkable feats of mankind. After lunch, you will stroll along the Sacred Way guarding the Ming Tombs, lined with different statutes of animals such as lions, elephants, camels and etc. Later in the day, you will make a photo stopover at the Olympic Park where you will view the exterior of the Bird Nest-China National Stadium and Water Cube-China National Aquatic Center. Upon return to the city proper of Beijing, enjoy the foot massage for your relaxation and spend the rest of the evening for leisure.
This morning you will visit the UNESCO Cultural Heritage Site - the Temple of Heaven where emperors used to pray for good harvest. You will also attend a morning lesson of Taiji (also referred to as Taichi by the Westerners) exercise on the site of the Temple of Heaven given by a professional. Taichi is a type of internal Chinese martial art practiced for both its defense training and its health benefits. T'ai chi theory and practice evolved in agreement with many Chinese philosophical principles, including those of Taoism and Confucianism. After lunch, you enjoy your free afternoon for leisure or shopping. You may also take an optional tour of Hutong (Chinese alleyways) by riding aboard a rickshaw pedicab through the narrow lanes of the old residential quarters in the afternoon ($45 per person).
Hutongs are a type of narrow streets or alleys in Beijing, formed by lines of siheyuan, traditional courtyard residences. Many neighborhoods were formed by joining one siheyuan to another to form a hutong, and then joining one hutong to another. Hutongs represent an important cultural element of the city of Beijing. Thanks to Beijing's long history and status as capital for six dynasties, almost every hutong has its anecdotes, and some are even associated with historic events. In contrast to the court life and elite culture represented by the Forbidden City, Summer Palace, and the Temple of Heaven, the hutongs reflect the culture of grassroots Beijingers. The hutongs are residential neighborhoods which still form the heart of Old Beijing. Taking a Hutong tour is a great way to enjoy the local cultures, giving you a unique opportunity to glimpse into the local resident's daily life.
After breakfast, you will take a flight to Xian, the ancient capital city for 11 dynasties in Chinese history. Upon arrival at the airport in Xian, you will be met and taken to tour the well preserved Ancient City Wall of Xian. After hotel check-in, enjoy some free time for leisure, before attending a dumpling dinner banquet, followed by an on-stage show of Tang Dynasty dance and music.
The excursion today takes you to visit the Tomb of Emperor Qin Shi Huang and see the awesome Terra-Cotta Warriors and Horses, widely regarded as the eighth wonder of the world. After lunch, you may enjoy the rest of the day for leisure or join the optional night walking tour of Muslim Street, known for the local yummy snacks and a variety of local artifacts.
Today you will take a flight for Wuhan, where you will be met and transferred for a high speed train ride (or bus ride) to Yichang. If time permits, you may take a brief side trip in the city of Wuhan. Upon arrival in Yichang, you will be met and transferred to the pier in Sandouping to embark on the Five Star MV. President Cruise Ship No. 7. Spend the night on the cruise ship. Ship departs late at mid night and enters Xiling Gorge.
Enjoy this morning for leisure or attend the onboard cultural programs. You may also take an optional shore excursion of the Tribes of the Three Gorges to take a glimpse into the local life of Xiling Gorge. After lunch you will take a shore excursion of the Three Gorges Dam. Return to the ship in the afternoon, while the cruise ship will pass through the five level ship locks of the well-known Three Gorges Dam, giving you a unique opportunity to experience the grandeur of the world's biggest dam project. Attend Captain's Welcome Party while ship continues sailing through the Xiling Gorge.
Upon arrival in Badong this morning, you will be transferred to a pea- boat for Shennong Stream drifting to experience the breathtaking scenery. Return to the cruise ship for lunch on board while ship sails though Wu Gorge and Qutang Gorge. Later in the afternoon, you may take optional shore excursion of the White Emperor City.
This morning you will take an included shore excursion of Shibaozhai Pagoda, which literally means the Stone Treasure Fortress. In the afternoon, the ship is scheduled to arrive in Fengdu, the legendary home of the King of Hades-often referred to as the "ghost city: Go ashore to take an optional shore excursion of this "ghost city" and visit Mingshan Hill's Temples. Continue sailing for Chongqing. Attend Captain's Farewell Dinner Banquet, followed by the talent show performed by the crew tonight.
Upon disembarking from the Yangtze cruise this morning, you will be met and taken for a brief city tour of Chongqing before taking a flight to Shanghai. Upon arrival at the airport in Shanghai, you will be met by our representative and transferred to your hotel for check-in. Enjoy the rest of the day for leisure, or take an optional tour of Zhujiajiao Water Town in the afternoon ($45 per person).
Located on the outskirts of Shanghai, Zhujiajiao Water Town enjoys a history of more than 1700 years, has been well known for the well preserved cultures and ancient architectural style buildings including the unique old stone bridges.
Shanghai, China's largest city (home to 16 million people), is also China's principal port on a deep estuary of the Yangtze River. Often regarded as "the Paris of the East," Shanghai has retained the flavor of its past European influences.
The excursion today takes you to the Bund - a waterfront area that showcases many landmark buildings of western style built in the early 20th century, the bustling Nanjing Road, Chenghuangmiao Old Town, and Tianzifang, an old neighborhood with hidden alleyways full of boutiques and art galleries. You will also visit the well-known Shanghai Museum of Art and History, which ranks among the great museums of the world. Attend a farewell dinner celebration of Shanghai cuisine in the evening, followed by an optional cruise on Huangpu River ($45 per person) to enjoy a fascinating night view of Shanghai.
Today you could enjoy your free day for leisure, or take an optional excursion to Suzhou with lunch included ($119 per person).
Today you will take a bus or bullet train ride to Suzhou, noted for landscaped classic gardens. You will cruise on the world famous ancient Grand Canal of more than 2400 years history to experience the unique cultures and glimpse the daily life of the local residents. You will also visit the silk embroidery factory, the Master of Fishing Nets Garden and the ancient Panmen Gate, the only existing water & land gate. Take a stroll along the famous Shan Tang Street with a history of more than 1100 years, where you can still experience the past prosperity of Suzhou and its traditional cultures well preserved. Return to Shanghai in late afternoon.
Today you could enjoy your free day for leisure, or take an optional excursion to Hangzhou with lunch included ($119 per person).
Proclaimed by Marco Polo as "the most beautiful and splendid city in the world", Hangzhou has been well known for its stunning natural and cultural beauty. This morning you will take a bus or bullet train ride to Hangzhou for a full day sightseeing. You will cruise the scenic West Lake, the UNESCO World Cultural Heritage Site, while enjoying the fascinating sceneries around the lake. View the goldfish at Flower Harbour at the West Lake, which is considered one of the top ten scenic attractions of the West Lake. Visit the Pagoda of Six Harmonies, originally built in the year 970 AD. You will also enjoy some time learning the Chinese tea culture at a tea orchard for the famous Longjin tea, which was once granted the status of imperial tea by the emperor in Qing Dynasty. The pan-rasted green tea is produced mostly by hand and renowned for high quality. Return to Shanghai by bus or bullet train in the afternoon.Today you could enjoy your free day for leisure, or take an optional excursion to Suzhou with lunch included.
Enjoy the free morning for leisure, before being picked up and transferred to the airport for your afternoon flight to Guilin, famous for its picturesque limestone peaks and rivers. Upon arrival at the airport in Guilin, you will be met and transferred to your hotel.
After breakfast, you will take a day excursion by motor vehicle ride to Longsheng County known for the ethnic minority cultures and the amazing Longji Terraced Rice Fields. You will take a walking tour of the famous Longji Terraced Rice Fields which are built along the slope winding from the riverside up to the mountain top, giving spectacular scenery. Longji (Dragon's Backbone) Terraced Rice Fields received their name because the rice terraces resemble a dragon's scales, while the summit of the mountain range looks like the backbone of the dragon. After lunch at the restaurant run by the local villagers, you will tour Ping An Village and a local market to experience the local culture of Zhuang ethnic group. Drive back to Guilin in late afternoon.
This morning you will take a motor vehicle ride to Yangshuo, an incredibly beautiful town with its landscape dotted with karst peaks and the Li River winding around it. Upon arrival in Yangshuo, you will take a walking tour and stroll on the Xi Jie (West Street) which has attracted so many foreign tourists that it has been even called the "Global Village". You will also take a relaxing cruise on the Li River while enjoying the haunting beauty of the mist-wrapped monolithic peaks along the riverbanks. Later in the afternoon, you may take optional hiking or biking tours if time permits. After dinner, attend the Folk Dance and Music Show given by the ethnic minority performers. Stay overnight in Yangshuo.
After breakfast, you will take a departure transfer to the train Station to board high speed bullet train to Shenzhen, a neighboring city across Hong Kong. Upon arrival at the airport in Shenzhen, you will be picked up and transferred directly to your hotel in Hong Kong, "The Pearl of the Orient". You may stroll around for leisure or shopping for the rest of the day.
Today's half-day seat-in-coach tour of Hong Kong Island takes you to the Stanley Market, the Aberdeen Fishing Village, Repulse Bay and Victoria Peak for a breathtaking view of the city and its harbor. The rest of the day will be free for you to experience the vibrancy and vitality of urban Hong Kong on your own.
After breakfast, you will take a departure transfer to the airport for your flight back home.
AB: American Breakfast | L: Lunch | D: Dinner | SD: Special Dinner