18 DAYS ●
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With thousands of years of fascinatingly diverse history, China is one of the world’s oldest and most monumental civilisations. Encounter millennia-old culture and religion with visits to some of China’s greatest and most intriguing ancient sights.
Visit the beautiful Shaolin Temple, a 5th century building, home to Buddhist teachings, as seen on BBC One's Sacred Wonders.
Take a rickshaw ride through the intricate network of Hutongs in China's capital city
Explore one of China's four sacred Buddhist mountains
Explore the Hanging Temples and Yungang Caves in historic Datong
Admire the 1920s shikumen architecture of Xintiandi
Arrive in Beijing, China's fascinating capital. Depending on your time of arrival, the rest of the day is yours to start soaking up the local culture.
This morning, head to Beijing’s symbolic heart, Tiananmen Square and stroll into the sprawling magnificence of the Forbidden City where you will find a complex full of imperial treasures. Take a rickshaw ride through the narrow alleys of the warren-like hutongs and learn more about living in this traditional area. In the evening, sit down to enjoy the local delicacy, Peking duck.
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 sheer magnificence of the wall itself and the dramatic scenery that surrounds it. Visit a jade factory, where you will be able to buy a small handcrafted piece. Jade is revered throughout China and is said to bring fortune and prosperity to those who wear it. Spend the afternoon at the idyllic Summer Palace, wandering through traditional Chinese gardens and seeing the exquisite architecture.
Soak up the harmonious ambience of the Temple of Heaven, an orderly oasis in a bustling urban landscape and mingle with the locals as they practice Tai Chi, dance or play cards. Later, browse your way through Panjiayuan, Beijing’s most extensive arts, crafts and antiques market.
Travel by train to Datong, watching the rural splendour of China pass by your window. Datong is known for its abundant historical relics and natural beauty. Arrive in time for a local dinner in this fascinating city.
Today, you will explore some of China’s UNESCO World Heritage sites. Grottoes carved from sandstone cliffs in the 5th and 6th centuries, Yungang Caves are replete with intricate Buddhist imagery. Also visit the 1,400 year old, gravity-defying Hanging Temple that seemingly floats 50 metres up the face of Jinxia Gorge. Travel on to Wutaishan.
One of China’s four sacred Buddhist mountains, Wutaishan (Five Terraced Mountain) is a place of scenic magnificence. In Wutaishan’s shadow, an alpine valley shelters many important monasteries, temples and sculptures, some dating back over 1,000 years. Here, visit the Bodhisattva Summit Temple and Xiantong Buddhist Temple. Continue to Taiyuan, the capital and largest city in Shanxi Province and visit the Twin Pagoda Temple, constructed during the Ming Dynasty.
Enjoy the beauty and tranquillity of Jinci Temple before travelling to the old town of Pingyao. Pingyao is a living museum and home to China’s best preserved ancient city walls. Here, take part in a traditional Chinese paper cutting experience, an art dating back to the 6th century.
Explore the characterful old town of Pingyao, strolling along the cobbled streets to view the old city walls and the Rishengchang Financial House Museum. There will also be time to see the Yamen, a government building during the Qing Dynasty, before taking the bullet train to the former imperial capital of Xian.
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 these life-size warriors and visit the Xian Art Ceramics and Lacquer Workshop. Later, take a stroll on the beautifully preserved ancient city walls that enclose Xian’s old town. This evening, enjoy a delicious feast of Shui Jiao dumplings and a performance of Tang Dynasty dancing.
Admire the relics at the Xian Museum before visiting the Little Wild Goose Pagoda and watching a calligraphy demonstration. There will also be time to explore the atmospheric alleys of the Muslim Quarter.
Board a bullet train from Xian to Luoyang, a city that was the capital for more than 13 dynasties. This afternoon, visit the Longmen Grottoes which houses tens of thousands of age-old statues and sculptures depicting Buddha and his disciples carved from the limestone cliffs of Xiangshan and Longmenshan.
Travel to Dengfeng and visit the famous Shaolin Temple, best known for its association with martial arts, and walk through the Pagoda Forest, a collection of 228 pagodas of various styles built from the Tang through to the Qing dynasties. Later, witness a kung fu demonstration by the famous Shaolin Monks. Continue to Zhengzhou.
Fly to the exuberant and cosmopolitan city of Shanghai, also known as the ‘Paris of the East’. In the evening, view the city from the Huangpu River on a scenic cruise.
Shanghai is China’s great metropolis, east and west colliding on streets lined with skyscrapers and old temples. Visit the classical Yu Garden and stop in the old town before admiring the colonial architecture on the Bund. This evening, take your seats to see the fascinating ERA acrobatic show.
Wander through the Xintiandi area to admire the 1920s architectural style, view the artefacts at the Shanghai Museum and explore the Silk Factory. Taste delicious, traditional Shanghainese cuisine for dinner.
Fly to the UK, arriving home the same or following day.
All of our tour departures include international flights and taxes in the price. If the dates we have available for this tour don't suit your needs, or you are not sure travelling as part of a group is for you, maybe a Private Tour would be more ideal. If your tour departs in less than 30 days, please call our travel experts to book.
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Everyone needs a visa to travel to China, and this visa should be arranged before you travel. Your visa is included in the price of your holiday, and when it comes to organising it, our visa team will be on hand to help you with any questions or queries. Our step-by-step guide on completing your visa form is available on our website and we will comprehensively check your visa application form to make sure it meets the embassy guidelines. For those passengers travelling to the London visa centre, you will be met and assisted by a member of the Wendy Wu Tours team.
To call the UK the international access code is 0044. Out of hours is 0044 1888 288 288. Mobile phones are quite popular in China and you will find high quality coverage. SMS and call rates can be expensive: we recommend that you contact your mobile supplier for more details. Some of our hotels have WIFI in the rooms and some will only have it in the lobby. There may be additional charges. Many websites, including Google, Facebook and Twitter are banned and inaccessible in China. If you need to access your email via Gmail whilst in China, please use an alternative email account whilst in the country.
Tipping while on holiday is common in most parts of the world and China is no exception. In order to avoid any inconvenience Wendy Wu Tours operates a tipping policy where a stated amount is given to your national escort at the beginning of your tour and tips are distributed to local guides and drivers throughout your tour. Yangtze cruise companies operate a service charge policy and this is paid separately when boarding the vessel. We indicate tipping amounts in your final documents for guidance.
Shopping can be a fun and entertaining component to any travel adventure, and China has a vast array of shopping opportunities for those who love to seek out a bargain. In keeping with most people’s interests whilst on holiday, your tour will include a reasonable number of opportunities to shop for local goods and souvenirs. We have included visits to establishments that not only provide an opportunity to purchase a locally produced, great-value souvenir; but you’ll witness first-hand how these local products are made, their history and how they support the local economy.
The cost of meals is included in your group tour cost. Breakfast is served in the hotel and includes western dishes. As is traditional in China, lunch and dinner consist of small dishes of local cuisine which are placed on a ‘Lazy Susan’ for everyone to share. If you would like to drink beer, soft drink or bottled water with your meals, payment is to be made directly to the restaurant staff. If you have booked a tour that does not include all meals, your local guides will be able to recommend where to eat. Any food/diet requests MUST be specified at the time of booking.
Wendy Wu Tours inspect all of our hotels to ensure they meet the high levels of service which we require for our guests. We pick the right hotel for the specific destination, meaning your accommodation can range from a smart business hotel in one city to a family run guesthouse in a smaller town. Hotels in China are bound by Government laws which mean that air conditioning is switched on nationally in May and the central heating in November (this may vary slightly depending on the region).
We draw from a wide range of hotels on our holidays, each one is chosen to suit the tour you are travelling on meaning your accommodation can range from a smart business hotel in one city to a family run guesthouse in a smaller town. Here are some examples of the type of hotel you can expect to find on this tour.
The 4 star Super House International Hotel combines traditional Chinese culture with contemporary comforts. All of the rooms feature air conditioning, satellite television, a minibar and a safety deposit box. Facilities include a restaurant serving authentic Chinese cuisine, a coffee shop, lobby bar and tea room. There is also a fitness centre with sauna and a small boutique....Read more
Featuring 221 spacious rooms, the Datong Hotel is situated in a lively area of the city centre. All of its chic and spacious air conditioned rooms come with flat screen satellite television, and en-suite and a safety deposit box. The onsite restaurant offers Sichuan and Cantonese cuisine. The hotel also has an indoor swimming pool and a fitness centre. ...Read more
Wutaishan Friendship Hotel features modern accommodation in the Wutaishan Scenic Area. Rooms are elegantly furnished and include satellite television, tea making facilities, free Wifi and an en-suite bathroom. The hotel also has an onsite fitness centre, supermarket and restaurant, which serves local Chinese dishes. ...Read more
The centrally located Shanxi Grand Hotel in Taiyuan has modern en-suite rooms which include satellite television, free Wifi, air conditioning, tea making facilities and a safety deposit box. The hotel’s onsite restaurant serves local and international cuisine. There is also a fitness centre and an indoor swimming pool for your use. ...Read more
Located 5 kilometers from the city downtown, Yulong International Hotel ,combines elegance and sophistication with first-class service. Facilities include three restaurants, a lobby bar, games room, beauty salon, fitness room and business centre. The 258 beautifully decorated and well-equipped rooms have air-conditioning, satellite LCD flatscreen TV, tea/coffee making facilities, telephone, mini-bar, hairdryer and a safe deposit box.
Right in the heart of Luoyang, the Peony Hotel has well-appointed en-suite rooms with modern amenities, including a flat-screen TV, electric kettle and a minibar. The hotel also features a restaurant serving Cantonese, Sichuan, and Western flavours, a massage parlour and a fitness centre.
Xinhuajianguo Hotel is located in downtown Zhengzhou and offers guests comfortably furnished en-suite rooms. Facilities include satellite TV, free internet access, a mini bar and other amenities. The onsite restaurant boasts superb Chinese cuisine. Other services and facilities include a sauna, beauty salon, fitness room and laundry service....Read more
Providing spacious, comfortable, air conditioned rooms the Crowne Plaza is in a great location for exploring the city. The hotel has a fitness centre, two swimming pools, a spa and a variety of dining options serving Chinese and international dishes....Read more
At Wendy Wu Tours we are all avid adventurers, constantly seeking out the best ways for you to experience the world. That's why we are touring experts - our customer reviews and numerous awards say it all. This website is all about showcasing top sights magnificent hidden gems; about the plethora of different types of authentic and exciting experiences that we can offer you; and about giving you the very best holiday, whether it's your first visit or your 10th. Wendy Wu and the team look forward to welcoming you soon!
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The Foreign & Commonwealth Office and National Travel Health Network and Centre have up-to-date advice on staying safe and healthy abroad. For the latest travel advice from the Foreign & Commonwealth Office including security and local laws, plus passport and visa information check https://www.gov.uk/foreign-travel-advice
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