Discover China with the Telegraph

Departing 11th/12th Sep 2017, 15 days from £3,490pp fully inclusive

Tour Highlights

  • Stroll through Tiananmen Square
  • Walk on the iconic Great Wall
  • Come face to face with the Terracotta Army of Qin Shi Huang
  • Admire magical karst scenery on a Li River Cruise
  • Marvel at the imposing majesty of the Three Gorges

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15 Days from £3,490pp

Day 1: Fly to Beijing
Fly to Beijing Capital International Airport where you will be met in the arrival hall by your National Escort from Wendy Wu Tours. After transferring approximately 1 hour to the hotel, the rest of your day is at leisure. A welcome briefing will be held at the hotel once all members of the group have arrived.
Day 1: Fly to Beijing
Day 2: Forbidden City & Temple of Heaven
Spend the day with our correspondent Neil Connor as he shares his experiences of living and working in Beijing. Stroll through Tiananmen Square, past Chairman Mao’s Mausoleum and into the imperial magnificence of the Forbidden City. Here you will explore the largest and best preserved collection of ancient buildings in China. Continue to the Temple of Heaven, a tranquil space in the heart of the city that perfectly illustrates the harmony of Confucian design. Admire the symmetrical beauty of the Hall of Prayer for Good Harvests and discover more about the ritual worship performed here. In the evening join Neil for a welcome dinner at Yushuiyao Restaurant, one of his favourites, where he will talk further about his experiences in Beijing and provide commentary on the current political and economic climate in China.
Day 2: Forbidden City & Temple of Heaven
Day 3: Great Wall of China at Mutianyu
Drive 2 hours to China's most iconic attraction, The Great Wall, a structure that stretches over 4,000 miles from the Yellow Sea on the east coast to the Gobi Desert in the west. Walking on it is the very best way to appreciate this 2,000 year-old feat of engineering whilst admiring the landscapes that it crosses. You will visit Mutianyu, one of the best preserved sections of the wall, providing a glimpse of how the structure would have looked when it was first built to keep out the Mongol hordes. Reached by a short cable car ride, the views from the top over the surrounding mountains are awe-inspiring. Later, visit the Jade Museum and return to Beijing where this evening’s meal includes the delicious local delicacy, Peking Duck.
Day 3: Great Wall of China at Mutianyu
Day 4: Fly to Xian
Transfer to the airport for a 2 hour flight to Xian. Imperial capital for 11 dynasties and the eastern terminus of the Silk Road, Xian is a city with an illustrious past. Begin your explorations with a stroll on the ancient city wall, the oldest and best preserved city wall in China.
Day 4: Fly to Xian
Day 5: Terracotta Warriors with an Archaeologist
The warriors of Qin Shi Huang’s Terracotta Army are one of the greatest archaeological discoveries of the 20th century. Your visit will begin with an introduction by an archaeologist, who will put the warriors into context and help you gain a deeper understanding of the on-going work at the site. Within the museum area the warriors can be seen in 3 different ‘pits’,which are active archaeological digs, the site is large and will take about 2 and a half hours to explore. Later visit the Xian Art Ceramics and Lacquer Exhibition centre to see smaller models of the warriors being made. Returning to Xian, stop to explore the colourful Muslim Quarter, a warren of busy streets lined with Muslim influenced market stalls and food vendors. This evening, enjoy the grandeur of the past with a colourful Tang Dynasty dance performance accompanied by a traditional dumpling dinner.
Day 5: Terracotta Warriors with an Archaeologist
Day 6: Hanyangling Mausoleum and fly to Guilin
This morning, visit the Hanyangling Mausoleum, the burial place of Emperor Jing of the Western Han Dynasty. The artefacts discovered here, viewable from glass walkways, give a fascinating insight into daily life in the 1st century BC. Transfer to the airport and fly approximately 2 hours and 15 minutes to Guilin, a city at the heart of spectacular karst formations of the Li River valley. On arrival transfer 1 hour to your hotel and visit the intriguing South China Pearl Museum.
Day 6: Hanyangling Mausoleum and fly to Guilin
Day 7: Li River Cruise
Embark on a leisurely 4 hour cruise through the poetic landscapes of the Li River, winding between towering limestone karst peaks and sleepy countryside. Look out for weathered farmers tending their fields, fishermen angling for their daily catch and water buffalo wallowing in the shallows, all watched over by the dramatic geology for which Yangshuo is famed. On arrival in Yangshuo, take some time to explore before driving through the countryside back to Guilin.
Day 7: Li River Cruise
Day 8: Embark your Yangtze River Cruise
Transfer to Guilin airport for your 1 hour flight to Chongqing. On arrival explore the vibrant streets of the Old Town of Ciqikou before enjoying dinner. Board your Yangtze River Cruise Ship this evening.
Day 8: Embark your Yangtze River Cruise
Day 9: Shibaozhai and Captain’s Reception
Cruising downstream you will be able to soak up the stunning views from on deck. Today’s shore excursion will be to Shibaozhai Temple. This small 18th century temple was built at the top of a nine-storey pavilion clinging to the sheer south bank near Qutang Gorge. Depending on local conditions of the river you may visit the Ghost City of Fengdu which boasts a rich history combining the cultures of Taoism, Buddhism and Confucianism Please note only one of these shore excursions will be included today, you will be off the ship for approximately 2 hours on either excursion. In the afternoon enjoy a reception with the captain and the cruise director and learn about life on the river.
Day 9: Shibaozhai and Captain’s Reception
Day 10: Three Gorges and Goddess Stream
Enter the dramatic Three Gorges, passing through Qutang, Wu and Xiling Gorges. Switching to smaller vessels take a relaxing trip on the Goddess Stream cruising through the beautiful and narrow gorges. Depending on local conditions you may travel along the Shennong Stream instead of the Goddess Stream. Many protected species make the stunning peaks that tower over these streams their home, including monkeys, mountain goats, deer and wild boar. In the evening, sail through the Three Gorges Dam ship locks.
Day 10: Three Gorges and Goddess Stream
Day 11: Three Gorges Dam
Visit the Three Gorges Dam, the largest hydroelectric dam in the world. Disembarking the ship drive approximately 20 minutes (the coach is not permitted to stop for photos) to the viewing area above the ship locks where you will be able to truly appreciate the scale of this hydroelectric project. There is also a small museum here and a lookout point. Continue downstream to Yichang where your Yangtze River cruise ends and transfer 4 hours by road to Wuhan airport. Your flight to Shanghai will take 1 and half hours, on arrival transfer approximately 1 hour to your hotel.
Day 11: Three Gorges Dam
Day 13: Street of Eternal Happiness & French Concession
Spend the morning wandering through the tree-lined streets of Shanghai’s French Concession, where you will be joined by long-standing Shanghai correspondent Rob Schmitz. Experience first-hand the unique street which inspired Rob to write his book “Street of Eternal Happiness”, and listen as he re-lives the moments which tell this extraordinary tale. Later today, enjoy the collections of the Shanghai Museum.
Day 13: Street of Eternal Happiness & French Concession
Day 14: Explore Shanghai
Visit the Yu Garden, a classical example of Chinese horticulture, before walking through Shanghai’s old town. Rob will join you for a walk along the Bund, learning about the fascinating history of the area and admiring the Art Deco buildings. You will also learn how silk is made at Shanghai’s Silk Museum. Rob will join you for a sumptuous farewell dinner at Meiyuancun, where he will regale you with more tales about his time in Shanghai, before boarding a Huangpu River cruise together to see the bright lights of Pudong at night.
Day 14: Explore Shanghai
Day 15: Depart Shanghai
Today transfer from your hotel to the airport according to the departure time of your international flight. Any time before the flight is at leisure.
Day 15: Depart Shanghai

Reviews

Personal highlights are too numerous to mention. This was a fantastic tour and it was evident that much care and consideration had gone into planning it. Well done and thank you Wendy Wu. This was tremendous value for money and the links to the Telegraph correspondents added an interesting dimension. The tour in all its aspects exceeded our expectations and was a wonderful and memorable experience.

Mr and Mrs Tremlett

Our national guide was excellent. Nothing was too much trouble for him. He was polite, helpful, resourceful and most attentive, even down to the smallest details. I rate him as the very best.

Mrs Atkinson

We have just returned and wanted to say how much we enjoyed our holiday. Special thanks goes to Tony, our national guide whose sense of humour, patience and professional attitude were exemplary. We packed so much into the 12 days but everything was very well organised and ran like clockwork. All the guides worked incredibly hard and are a credit to Wendy Wu Tours. It is hard to think of one single highlight as there were so many.

Mr and Mrs Davis

We have recently returned from the above tour, having had a very enjoyable time. The meetings with the Telegraph correspondents added interesting insights into Chinese life. The section of great wall we were taken to was well chosen, being that little bit further out than the busy tourist areas. The personalised introduction to the Terracotta Army by the museum director and was much appreciated.

Mr and Mrs Holford

Wendy Wu Tours inspect all of our hotels to ensure they meet the high levels of service which we require for our guests. If the hotels details below for your tour are not available, hotels of a similar standard will be used.

Mercure Beijing Downtown
Mercure Beijing Downtown - Beijing (3 Nights)
star rating

Located in Beijing’s central business district, the Mercure makes for a comfortable overnight stay after a busy day of sightseeing in China’s capital city. Rooms are bright and modern, featuring a safety deposit box, in-room wifi, a minibar, satellite TV, and an ensuite bathroom with a bathtub and shower, helping you have a good nights’ sleep. The hotel also features a heated indoor swimming pool and plenty of breakfast choices.


Grand New Century Hotel
Grand New Century Hotel - Xian (2 Nights)
star rating

The recently renovated Grand New Century Hotel is located near Xian’s Small Wild Goose Pagoda and South Gate of the Ancient City Wall. The modern hotel rooms have free wifi, a safety deposit box, a mini bar, and comfortable beds. The hotel features an indoor pool, health centre, four restaurants, two bars, a business centre, and an impressive reception area crowned with an opulent chandelier.


Lijiang Waterfall Hotel
Lijiang Waterfall Hotel - Guilin (2 Nights)
star rating

Located in Guilin’s city center and opposite the attractive Sun and Moon pagodas, the Lijiang Waterfall Hotel offers luxury rooms equipped with a flat screen satellite television, a minibar, a safety deposit box and a stunning en-suite bathroom with complimentary toiletries. The hotel also boasts an outdoor swimming pool and a fitness centre. Guests can enjoy Chinese, Japanese, Korean and Western cuisines in the onsite restaurant.


Jin Jiang Hua Ting Hotel
Jin Jiang Hua Ting Hotel - Shanghai (3 Nights)
star rating

The gleaming, sail-like building of Jin Jiang Hua Ting Hotel is located in one of Shanghai’s bustling business districts. Rooms are modern and elegantly decorated, featuring oversized windows, a minibar, free wifi and flat screen TVs. There is an indoor pool and jacuzzi, table tennis, billiards and a fitness centre so you can wind down at the end of the day.


September is an ideal time to visit China. As a northern hemisphere country, China experiences seasons similar to the UK although temperatures can be more extreme. September is early autumn with pleasantly warm days and delightfully cool evenings. Rainfall is relatively low. It is a comfortable and temperate month sitting perfectly between the searing heat of summer and the chill of winter.

Arriving in northerly Beijing, average daytime temperatures are around 20°C and about 10°C at night. The weather in Xian is likely to be similar. Along the Yangtze River, which winds its way through central China, expect 20-25°C but be aware that cooling breezes on the water may make the temperature feel significantly lower. Ending in Shanghai, now in the second half of the month, we will return to average temperatures of about 20°C during the day and 10°C at night.

We are aware that air quality in China can sometimes be poor especially in the industrialised cities of the north. On our trip the greatest risk is in Beijing where smog can sometimes mix with sand particles blown in from the Gobi Desert, reducing visibility. This is most prevalent in early spring but can happen at any time of year. Temporary exposure is unlikely to cause any adverse health reactions however it is best to seek advice if you suffer from any respiratory conditions.

By way of example, the clothing we suggest you take with you on your tour includes

  • Comfortable trousers (or long skirts for women)
  • Shirts or long-sleeved tops of light cotton material
  • Light jumpers which can be easily worn or removed to keep comfortable as temperatures change
  • A waterproof and windproof jacket in case of adverse weather when sightseeing
  • Sturdy and comfortable shoes for sightseeing as we will spend a lot of time on our feet
  • Sun protection such as a hat, sunscreen and lip balm

Exclusive Experiences

Treasure Hall at the Forbidden City

Treasure Hall at the Forbidden City

The hidden gem of the Forbidden City, the Treasure Hall contains a magnificent collection of imperial artefacts in a series of intimate, glittering galleries. Admire elaborate jewellery, robes, tea services and jade ornaments in this lesser-known area.

Meet the discoverers of the Terracotta Warriors

Meet the discoverers of the Terracotta Warriors

Imagine innocently digging and stumbling upon the greatest archaeological discovery of the 20th century. You’ll have an opportunity to learn about this momentous moment by talking to one of the farmers who uncovered the warriors by accident in 1974.

Tai Chi Lesson in Yangshuo

Tai Chi Lesson in Yangshuo

Join a Tai Chi master to learn about the traditional philosophies of Tai Chi. You’ll be guided through the basic positions and breathing techniques of this ancient martial art, getting to grips with the graceful, flowing movements practiced throughout China.

Take the Maglev train in Shanghai

Take the Maglev train in Shanghai

Experience a train trip like no other and travel at speeds of up to 268mph,all in absolute comfort and peace to enter one of the fastest-moving cities on the planet.

Price Includes

Departing 11th/12th Sep 2017, 15 days from £3,490pp fully inclusive
 

  • International flights
  • All domestic travel
  • All accommodation
  • All meals
  • Touring with local guides
  • Visa fees for UK & EU passport holders
  • National Escort for groups over 10
  • Local Guides
  • Two Telegraph correspondents (one in Beijing and one in Shanghai - no other cities)
  • One exclusive experience as outlined above

Call us now on 0800 1445 282 
 

Experience

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