Cities of the Orient
Cities of the Orient
Embark on a comprehensive journey through the great cities of China – Shanghai, Beijing, Xian and Hong Kong, interspersed with unmissable sights that encompass ancient treasures, natural wonders and tranquil landscapes.
- Return flights.
- Domestic transportation
- All meals
- Touring with guides and entrance fees
- Visa fees for UK passport holders
Day 1 - 2: London - Beijing
Fly overnight to the exuberant city of Beijing. Depending on your time of arrival the rest of the day is yours to start soaking up the local culture.
Day 3: Beijing
This morning, head to Beijing’s symbolic heart, Tiananmen Square, and stroll into the sprawling magnificence of the Forbidden City. Entering through the Gate of Supreme Harmony, you will find a complex full of imperial riches. Explore Beijing’s old hutongs by rickshaw and visit the home of a local family. Eat traditional Peking duck for dinner and enjoy a Chinese acrobatic show.
Day 4: The Great Wall
This morning is dedicated to China’s most iconic sight – the Great Wall. Taking a walk on this incredible structure is the best way to appreciate both the wall itself and the dramatic scenery that it crosses. Visit the Jade Museum then spend the afternoon in the idyllic gardens of the Summer Palace as you wander through traditional Chinese landscapes and see the exquisite architecture.
Day 5: Temple of Heaven
Soak up the harmonious ambience of the Temple of Heaven, an orderly oasis in a bustling urban landscape, and wander in the park to watch or participate in a dance class. Transfer to the airport and fly to the ancient city of Xian. This evening, enjoy a delicious feast of traditional Shui Jiao dumplings before a performance of Tang Dynasty dancing.
Day 6: Terracotta Warriors
After their fortuitous discovery in the 1970s, the Terracotta Army of China’s first Emperor, Qin Shi Huang, has intrigued visitors ever since. Spend the morning viewing the enigmatic ranks of life-sized warriors and visit the workshop where the warriors are intricately recreated. Later, stroll along the beautifully preserved 14th-century city walls that enclose Xian’s old town.
Day 7: Bullet Train to Chengdu
Enjoy a relaxed morning with time to walk through the atmospheric alleys of the Muslim Quarter, which are lined with food stalls. Later, take a bullet train to Chengdu, home of the Giant Panda.
Day 8: The Great Pandas
A visit to Chengdu’s famous Panda Conservation Centre allows you to see and learn about China’s celebrated bears up close in surroundings that mirror their natural habitat. Visit the Shu Brocade Museum and take a stroll through People's Park to see Matchmaker’s Corner, where parents search for suitors for their children. Also, enjoy the lively atmosphere of the Wide and Narrow Alleys.
Day 9: Old Ciqikou
Drive from Chengdu to Chongqing and spend some time wandering the picturesque old alleyways of Ciqikou. Later, board your Yangtze cruise vessel and set sail.
Day 10 - 12: Yangtze River Cruise
A man-made marvel, the Three Gorges Dam showcases this massive feat of engineering. But as we cruise upstream nature takes over, revealing some of the world’s most dramatic scenery including the Three Gorges themselves. Over the next three days prepare for one breathtaking panorama after another. Take a side trip to the attractive Goddess or Shennong Stream and enjoy shore excursions to the Ghost City of Fengdu or Shibaozhai.
Day 13: Shanghai
Shanghai is China’s great metropolis, where east and west collide on streets lined with futuristic skyscrapers and 10th-century temples. Visit Yu Garden and the old town before admiring the magnificent colonial architecture with a stroll along the Bund. Learn about the age-old silk production process at the Silk Museum and take an optional trip on the super-fast Maglev train. This evening, view the city from the Huangpu River on a panoramic cruise and enjoy a delicious meal of traditional Shanghainese cuisine.
Day 14: Fly to Hong Kong
Fly from Shanghai to Hong Kong and embark on a Hong Kong Island tour, which includes Stanley Market and Aberdeen Harbour, where you take to the water on a traditional junk boat.
Day 15: Lantau Island
Take a ferry through Victoria Harbour to spend the day on the lovely island of Lantau. Explore Hong Kong's natural beauty at Cheung Sha Beach, Tai O fishing village and the Giant Buddha. A ride in the Ngong Ping 360° cable-car gives panoramic views over the island’s coastline. Enjoy a farewell dinner atop Victoria Peak.
Day 16: Fly to UK
Today is at leisure until your flight home. Depending on your time of departure, there is an option to tour the New Territories, paying visits to Yuen Yuen Institute, Tai Mo Shan lookout, Fanling Walled Village, Luk Kong Road lookout, Bride's Pool Falls and Sam Mun Tsai fish farming zone. Transfer to the airport for your flight to the UK, arriving home the same or following day.
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