FLAVOURS OF CHINA & THE YANGTZE
From 22/04/2023 to 27/10/2023
Breakfasts Included: 13.
Lunches Included: 9.
Dinners Included: 6.
Itinerary / more information
Day 1 - ARRIVE IN BEIJING, CHINA Ni Hao China Welcome to Beijing, China's capital city. Hotel check-in available mid-afternoon.
Day 2 - BEIJING Square Root of an Empire Your full-day sightseeing starts with a visit to Tian'anmen Square, the largest public square in the world. Next, explore the Forbidden City, a UNESCO World Heritage Site and the world's largest palace complex. Once the home of China's great emperors, today it showcases ancient Chinese architecture, landscaped gardens, and displays of rare art and artifacts. Enjoy lunch in a local restaurant, followed by free time to explore on your own. This evening, enjoy a special welcome dinner featuring [LF] Peking duck, Beijing's most famous dish. (B,L,D) LOCAL FAVOURITE DUCK DYNASTY Venture out to a popular local restaurant for a traditional dinner featuring Peking duck. Taking up to three days to prepare, this is as much an art as it is a meal. Ducks are usually roasted over fruitwood until the skin is crisp, before being sliced and served with steamed pancakes, sweet bean sauce, cucumber, and scallions. To enjoy it in the traditional way, take a pancake in one hand, then using chopsticks (or a fork if desired) coat a piece of duck with the sweet bean sauce and spread it over the pancake. Then, fill the pancake with more duck and condiments of your choice. Finally, roll it up with your hands and enjoy!
Day 3 - BEIJING. GREAT WALL EXCURSION Walling Out Today, drive out of the city to visit the Great Wall of China, a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Return to Beijing for some leisure time this evening. (B,L) TOUR HIGHLIGHT STONE DRAGON The Great Wall of China once stretched 4,000 miles across China's barren northern terrain from the Bohai Sea to the Gobi Desert. Although the wall can't be easily seen from space as you may have heard. its curvy shape is reminiscent of a dragon when seen from above. Head north to a village where the Great Wall is well preserved and walk along the wall to enjoy sweeping vistas of this mammoth fortress. FREE TIME TIPS SHOWTIME Tonight, you may choose to attend a performance of the Peking Opera, a traditional form of Chinese theater, or attend the Legend of Kung Fu Show, with a fusion of kung fu, dance, and acrobatics. This and many more options throughout your tour are available for purchase with My Account.
Day 4 - BEIJING-XI'AN From Ancient Alleys to a Walled City This morning, visit the Temple of Heaven and enjoy a [LF] rickshaw ride through one of Beijing's hutongs. Later, a flight brings you to Xi'an, where the massive city wall reflects the city's wealth and status dating back to when China dominated the silk trade. (B) LOCAL FAVOURITE LASTING TRADITIONS Explore a hutong, one of the city's ancient alleys, which are quickly disappearing. Experience life in this historic neighborhood as your travel by rickshaw and visit the courtyard of a family's home to learn more about their life.
Day 5 - XI'AN Timeless Treasures This morning is dedicated to the impressive Terracotta Army complex, one of the world's greatest archaeological discoveries. During lunch, enjoy a noodle-making demonstration by a master chef and learn how Chinese noodles are made by hand. Next, visit the Dayan Pagoda, built in 652 AD. This evening, attend the "Tang Dynasty" dinner show, featuring a dazzling assemblage of classical performances. (B,L,D) TOUR HIGHLIGHT AN ARMY FOR THE AGES Xi'an is an archaeological treasure trove and home to the enormous tomb of China's first emperor, Qin Shi Huangdi, complete with a legion of Terracotta Warriors that have been guarding the burial site for 2,000 years. Accidentally discovered by local farmers in 1974, some 8,000 life-sized figures are visible, each individually unique, with an astounding level of detail including weapons, horses, and chariots. Considering the site is largely unexcavated the full scale is unimaginable.
Day 6 - XI'AN-CHENGDU Lessons Learned & Rapid Rail This morning, visit the Xi'an city wall and participate in a traditional Chinese calligraphy class. You may see locals practicing morning tai chi. Next, travel by high-speed train to Chengdu, capital of Sichuan province and known for its delicious food. (B) TOUR HIGHLIGHT EPIC RIDE Your high-speed train from Xi'An to Chengdu travels through the central Shaanxi Plain, Qinling Mountain, and into the Sichuan Basin, offering changing landscapes and scenery with a feast for the eyes. Gaze out your window across the vast and fertile plains dotted with farms and farmhouses, and whiz through tunnels and across bridges for a memorable train trip to Chengdu - also called "Heavenly State."
Day 7 - CHENGDU-CHONGQING (EMBARKATION)-YANGTZE RIVER CRUISE Pandas & Piers This morning, visit the [LF] Giant Panda Research base. After lunch, board your high-speed train to Chongqing, China's capital during World War II. Upon arrival, transfer to the pier and board your ship for a 3-night cruise through the breathtaking Three Gorges of the Yangtze. (B,L,D) LOCAL FAVOURITE PANDA PARADISE Marvel at these beautiful animals as you explore the park, which is focused on educating visitors on giant panda and wildlife conservation. Here, the panda's natural environment has been recreated with streams, caves, and bamboo forests. Combined with a variety of climbing apparatuses and other enrichment programs, the pandas enjoy the space needed to thrive both mentally and physically.
Day 8 - CRUISING: FENGDU AREA Tao-wering Scenery This morning's shore excursion brings you to the Jade Emperor Scenic Area near Fengdu. Here, see the 100-foot-tall statue depicting the Jade Emperor, an important deity in Chinese Taoism. Return to your ship where the afternoon is at your leisure. This evening, the Captain hosts a welcome party, followed by dinner and a performance by the ship's crew. (B,L,D) FREE TIME TIPS ON SHIP & SHORE Enjoy a variety of onboard activities or you may choose to take an optional shore excursion to Fengdu, known by many Chinese as the "Ghost City," to visit the mountaintop shrines.
Day 9 - CRUISING: THREE GORGES Gorges & Goddesses Early this morning, you may choose to start your day with a tai chi session on the Sun Deck or simply relax and enjoy the scenery. Sail through two gorges-Qutang and Wu prior to lunch. This afternoon, join a boat excursion down Goddess Stream. Along the way, see picturesque scenery and the mysterious hanging wooden coffins. Before returning to your ship, you will also board a wooden boat on a smaller section of the stream, where the crew will sing songs as you glide across the stunning deep emerald-green waters surrounded by densely forested hills. (B,L,D) TOUR HIGHLIGHT GORGE-OUS VIEWS As you sail today, you'll experience the famed Three Gorges, one of nature's extraordinary sculptures. In the morning, sail through the first and second gorges-Qutang Gorge, the shortest but most dramatic gorge, and Wu, known for its quiet beauty and forest-covered mountains. You can nearly touch the perpendicular walls rising from the riverbanks as your Captain negotiates this narrow gap. Later, enter Xiling Gorge, the longest and deepest of the gorges.
Day 10 - CRUISING: (DISEMBARKATION) THREE GORGES DAM-YICHANG-HANGZHOU MORE POWER This morning, visit the Three Gorges Dam Site, the largest hydroelectric dam in the world. After lunch in Yichang, board your flight to Hangzhou, one of China's seven ancient capitals. (B,L)
Day 11 - HANGZHOU Paradise on Earth Enjoy a full-day tour of Hangzhou starting with a visit to Lingyin Temple followed by Fei Lai Feng, a unique mountain famous for its cluster of caves with hundreds of stone Buddha statues. After lunch, be transported back in time during a walking tour along Hefang Street. End the day with a cruise on West Lake, a UNESCO World Heritage Site. (B,L) TOUR HIGHLIGHT PICTURE PERFECT A wondrous collection of ancient bridges, causeways, temples, and palaces was visited by Marco Polo in 1290, where the explorer was so struck by the beauty of the lake, leading locals to call Hangzhou "Paradise on Earth."
Day 12 - HANGZHOU-SHANGHAI Shanghai Surprise Transfer to Shanghai, China's centre of trade and industry. Start your sightseeing with a stroll along the Bund, the city's riverfront boulevard lined with historic buildings, housing, banks, and trade houses. Then, visit Yu Yuan Gardens, dating back to the Ming Dynasty, and a silk factory to learn about the silk-making process. Lunch features [LF] xiaolongbao, Shanghai's most famous dish. The remainder of the day is at your leisure. (B,L) LOCAL FAVOURITE DUMPLING DELIGHT For lunch stop at a local restaurant to sample xiaolongbao. These tasty soup dumplings are handmade with at least 18 intricate folds to close the top. The broth is the star so, to avoid wasting a single drop, gently pick up the dumpling, dip in sauce, and transfer to a Chinese soup spoon. FREE TIME TIPS ABSURD AERIALS You may consider joining an optional tour to see a performance by the spectacular Shanghai acrobats. This and many more options throughout your tour are available for purchase with My Account.
Day 13 - SHANGHAI Museum & Mosey This morning, visit the Shanghai Museum, featuring stunning displays of ancient bronze, jade, and ceramics. Then, take a walking tour of the former French Concession, once Shanghai's leading residential and retail area. The afternoon is at your leisure. This evening, your Tour Director hosts a special farewell dinner. (B,D) TOUR HIGHLIGHT CULTURE & HERITAGE Today, the qualities that made the former French Concession area so popular endure-from quaint, tree-lined streets and exquisite architecture to charming shops and fashionable restaurants and bars. Along the way, see the famous Art Deco Cathay Theatre, explore the narrow lanes of Xintiandi, and visit Fuxing Park, where locals play chess, dance, practice tai chi, and more.
Day 14 - SHANGHAI Until we meet again Your tour ends with breakfast this morning. (B)
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