Grand Tour of China
A dizzying mix of ancient cultures, tumultuous history, breathtaking natural beauty and dynamic urban landscapes, China is a feast for all of the senses.
Magnificent Beijing, the legendary Terracotta Warriors, captivating pandas and a cruise through the Three Gorges combine to offer an unforgettable experience.
Highlights and Inclusions
- Scheduled flights from London to Beijing and Shanghai to London and internal flights as described
- First Class, high-speed rail travel throughout
- 10 nights' hotel accommodation with breakfast each day
- 3 nights on board a 5-star cruise ship on the Yangtze River
- 32 meals, including 13 breakfasts, 10 lunches and 9 dinners.
- Tour of Beijing, Xi'an, Suzhou and Shanghai
- Excursion to the Terracotta Warriors and the Great Wall of China
- Visit to the Giant Buddha Statue in Leshan & the Chengdu Giant Panda Breeding Research Institute
- Excursion to Wuhan's Yellow Crane Tower
- The services of a professional UK Tour Manager from start to finish
Days 1 & 2 - To Beijing
We depart London for our overnight flight to Beijing, via Hong Kong, arriving on Day 2. After transferring to the Novotel Peace Hotel, the rest of your day is free to settle in. (Day 2 - D)
Day 3 - Exploring Beijing
Today we discover the sights and sounds of China's vibrant capital. This morning, we visit the infamous Tiananmen Square, which, at over 4 million square feet, is the largest city square in the world. Stretched out across this space are several vivid reminders of China's political history, including an imposing portrait of Chairman Mao. We also take in the neighbouring Forbidden City, which is now a UNESCO World Heritage site. Boasting almost 1,000 buildings, this magnificently restored complex - with its historic pagodas and traditional Chinese palace buildings - makes a dynamic contrast with the contemporary square. Our final visit of the day is to the breathtaking Summer Palace. (B, L)
Day 4 - The Great Wall of China
We begin our day with a visit to the Temple of Heaven, a beautiful edifi ce in central Beijing. After some time here we visit the world-famous Great Wall of China. Listed as one of the modern Seven Wonders of the World, this masterpiece of Chinese workmanship stretches thousands of miles from the Gobi Desert to the Korean border - and is truly an awesome sight to behold. We visit the Mutianyu section, a beautifully preserved stretch which offers incredible views over the seemingly endless mountain scenery. After ascending by chair lift, we have the opportunity to walk along the wall before returning to Beijing. Here we see the 'Water Cube' and the 'Bird's Nest', the main arenas used in the 2008 Olympic Games. Tonight we enjoy a traditional Peking duck dinner together. (B, L, D)
Days 5 & 6 - Xi'an & the Terracotta Warriors
Leaving Beijing behind, we join the rail service to Xi'an. Our journey on the high-speed service takes us through the beautiful landscapes of rural China. In Xi'an we transfer to the Grand Mercure Hotel for two nights. On Day 6 we discover the famous Terracotta Warriors - one of the world's greatest archaeological finds. The 6,000 figures - some with horses or chariots, but all with unique features - were buried in 210 BC, yet only discovered 40 years ago. The life-sized statues were built as part of an elaborate tomb of the Qin Emperor, believed to protect him in death just as his real army had in life. Built on an incredible scale, the soldiers - all grouped in rank order - are a breathtaking sight. Later we discover more of the walled city of Xi'an, taking in the Great Mosque, the city's lively bazaar and the Small Wild Goose Pagoda. Dating back to the 8th century, the towering structure is a leading example of Tang Dynasty architecture. (Day 5 - B, Day 6 - B, L, D)
Days 7 & 8 - Chengdu, Leshan & the Giant Buddha
Today, we travel on the new high-speed rail service from Xi'an to Chengdu, where we spend two nights at the Tibet Hotel. On Day 8 we travel into rural China to Leshan, and visit the ancient Giant Buddha Statue. Carved into a towering mountain range, it is the world's largest stone statue at 233ft tall. We have time to admire this immense structure before returning to Chengdu. Here we see the Wenshu Monastery, one of China's finest Buddhist structures, as well as the historic teak buildings on Jinli Street. (Day 7 - B, L, D, Day 8 - B, L)
Day 9 - Chengdu & the Yangtze River
Today we visit the Giant Panda Breeding Research Institute, which is spread out over 200 acres and is now home to more than 100 of these magnificent creatures. The project allows us to see the Giant Panda, an incredibly enchanting and rare creature, at close quarters with almost uninterrupted views. Later we transfer to the station for the high-speed bullet train service to Chongqing, situated in the upper reaches of the Yangtze River. Here we board the luxury 5-star Century river ship for our three night cruise along the Yangtze River, through the dramatic scenery of the Three Gorges. (B, L, D)
Days 10 & 11 - The Yangtze & the Three Gorges
This morning there is an optional excursion to Fengdu Ghost City. This afternoon we visit the stunning Shibaozhai Pagoda, rising 12 stories up a sheer cliff face. Our cruise continues on Day 11 with a shore excursion to Shennong Stream, a stunning natural beauty where the cliff sides soar steeply away from the nearly emerald waters of this beautiful stream. This evening, enjoy the Captain's Banquet on board. (Day 10 - B, L, D, Day 11 - B, L, D)
Days 12 & 13 - Wuhan & Suzhou
We disembark at Yichang today, before we visit the colossal Three Gorges Dam, which is now the world's largest hydro power project. After, we travel by highspeed train to Wuhan, for a night at the Marco Polo Hotel. On Day 13 we visit Wuhan's distinctive Yellow Crane Tower, a stunning example of traditional Chinese architecture and the subject of many local legends, before transferring to the railway station for our eastward journey to Shanghai. We spend two nights at the Pullman Jing'an Hotel. (Day 12 - B, L, D, Day 13 - B, L)
Days 14 & 15 - To Shanghai & London
Today, we begin our explorations of Shanghai. We see the Yu Garden in Shanghai's historic core, where we enjoy a traditional tea ceremony, as well as the bazaar and the Jade Buddha Temple, ahead of visiting the beautiful French Concession and the Bund in the afternoon. This evening, we enjoy a farewell dinner at Xianqiangfang Restaurant, a restaurant renowned for its traditional cuisine. On Day 15, we transfer to Shanghai airport by coach and high speed Maglev train for our return flight back to London, via Hong Kong, where our tour ends on arrival. (Day 14 - B, D, Day 15 - B)
Rail Your Way
Own your holiday, make it bespoke, especially designed for you. This could be as simple as a variation to one of our existing tours by choosing where and when you want to begin and end your journey. Or something totally unique with your chosen destinations and hotels for the time you want. Rail Your Way allows you to tailor make your holiday so you can have the experience you want.
Ask your rail specialist for details.
Train and Hotel Accommodations
Century River Cruise Ship
We enjoy our cruise on the Yangtze River on one of Century's fleet of river cruise ships. The ship used varies by departure date, but all are modern comfortable vessels, with state-of-the-art amenities and spacious public areas. Along with the rest of the ship, the air-conditioned cabins are equipped with facilities to rival a 5-Star hotel. Each ship also boasts a restaurant serving fantastic cuisine - both traditional Chinese dishes and other international flavours. As each ship carries a large crew (approximately one crew member to every two passengers), you can be assured of attentive service throughout your time on board.
Dates & Prices
Select from the packages below to view prices for this tour.
|4th April 2019||Sold Out|
|18th April 2019||Sold Out|
|9th May 2019||Sold Out|
|16th May 2019||Sold Out|
|22nd August 2019||£3,145||Book Now|
|5th September 2019||£3,245||Book Now|
|10th October 2019||Sold Out|
|24th October 2019||£3,245||Book Now|
|31st October 2019||£3,145||Book Now|
|7th November 2019||£2,995||Book Now|
|26th March 2020||£3,195||Book Now|
|2nd April 2020||£3,295||Book Now|
|9th April 2020||£3,395||Book Now|
|16th April 2020||£3,495||Book Now|
|23rd April 2020||£3,495||Book Now|
|7th May 2020||£3,495||Book Now|
|14th May 2020||£3,495||Book Now|
|21st May 2020||£3,395||Book Now|
|28th May 2020||£3,295||Book Now|
|4th June 2020||£3,195||Book Now|
|11th June 2020||£3,195||Book Now|
|3rd September 2020||£3,295||Book Now|
|10th September 2020||£3,295||Book Now|
|17th September 2020||£3,295||Book Now|
|8th October 2020||£3,395||Book Now|
|15th October 2020||£3,395||Book Now|
|22nd October 2020||£3,295||Book Now|
|29th October 2020||£3,195||Book Now|
|5th November 2020||£3,095||Book Now|
|12th November 2020||£2,995||Book Now|
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: Departs 4th April 2019 (Sold Out) 18th April 2019 (Sold Out) 9th May 2019 (Sold Out) 16th May 2019 (Sold Out) 22nd August 2019 (£3,145), 5th September 2019 (£3,245), 10th October 2019 (Sold Out) 24th October 2019 (£3,245), 31st October 2019 (£3,145), 7th November 2019 (£2,995), 26th March 2020 (£3,195), 2nd April 2020 (£3,295), 9th April 2020 (£3,395), 16th April 2020 (£3,495), 23rd April 2020 (£3,495), 7th May 2020 (£3,495), 14th May 2020 (£3,495), 21st May 2020 (£3,395), 28th May 2020 (£3,295), 4th June 2020 (£3,195), 11th June 2020 (£3,195), 3rd September 2020 (£3,295), 10th September 2020 (£3,295), 17th September 2020 (£3,295), 8th October 2020 (£3,395), 15th October 2020 (£3,395), 22nd October 2020 (£3,295), 29th October 2020 (£3,195), 5th November 2020 (£3,095), 12th November 2020 (£2,995)
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Prices per person based on double occupancy. Prices are correct at the time of this web page going live; however are subject to confirmation at time of booking.
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