China is vast. Off-the-scale large. A gripping mixture of wildly varying dialects and climatic and topographical climaxes, it’s like various different nations wrapped into one. Whether you’re an city traveller, hiker, cyclist, backpacker, explorer, irrepressible museum-goer or faddish foodie, China’s multifariousness is inferior to none.
On arrival in Xian Airport, you will be met and escorted by our representative to your hotel (check in after 1400 hours). Enjoy a viewing of the Tang Dynasty Show, for a performance of Changan music and dance, which originated in China’s Tang dynasty over 1,000 years ago. Also, walk through a display of various ancient Chinese musical instruments.
This morning visits the archaeological site of the amazing Terracotta Warriors – a collection of
8,099 larger-than-life Chinese terracotta figures of warriors, horses and other figures, each celebrating
Chinese unification. The figures vary in height, according to their role, the tallest being the Generals. In
1974, near Xi’an in central China, villagers chanced upon what has become one of the world’s most
astonishing archaeological findings – an 8,000-man army in battle-ready formation, each warrior a lifesize figure in pottery made over 2,200 years ago. Later, visit to Xian Museum.
Proceed for orientation tour of Xi’an, including a visit to the Ancient City Wall built in 1374 AD on the lines of the city of Changan in the Tang Dynasty. They are 11.9 km in girth, with a top width of 12 to 14 meters, built of grey bricks and are still standing from the Middle Ages. The gate towers built over each of the four city gates, painted a dark green, look lofty and magnificent and forms a tight defence engineering system. Then proceed to visit the Big Wild Goose Pagoda, which houses sutras collected by a wandering Chinese monk in India, celebrating the onset of Buddhism in China. Later, transfer to the train station for your overnight train to Beijing.
On arrival in Beijing, transfer to enjoy a fast breakfast at KFC / Mc Donald’s on arrival. Then transfer to your hotel for a short refreshment (check in after 1400 hours). The grand finale is a visit to the Summer Palace, a magnificent imperial garden located 12 km west of Beijing City. A summer retreat for emperors and a chosen few in the past, it is now the largest and most ancient preserved garden in China, and includes over a 100 ancient pavilions, mansions, towers, halls, temples, bridges and an enormous clear water lake. Later, proceed to the Olympic Park, including the outside view of National Aquatics Centre, better known as the Water Cube, and the National Stadium, better known as the Bird’s Nest. The rest of the evening is free to explore this city of marvels on your own. Come evening and enjoy a wonderful Kung Fu Show. ‘The Legend of Kung Fu’ is a unique theatrical production, which celebrates the philosophy and skill of the martial art of Kung Fu through a compelling storyline, dramatic design, spectacular choreography and breath-taking music. A poignant and touching piece, the show blends the best of Kung Fu with exquisite ballet, music and wonderful theatre.
Today, proceed on a visit to the Jade Factory. Later, visit the only man-made structure visible from the moon, the Great Wall of China-Badaling by cable car (weather permitting), one of the oldest historic monuments in the world and a symbol of China’s ancient civilization. Just like a gigantic dragon, it winds up and down across deserts, grasslands, mountains and plateaus from east to west of China. Traditionally known as the “Wall of Ten thousand Li”, it leaves you spellbound by its sheer magnitude and architectural splendour. Continue on an interesting drive along the Spirit Way guarded by stone animals and human figures, and arrive at the Imperial Tombs at Changling Tombs, the only existing burial chambers of the Ming Emperors. Time permitting; take an outside view of the 2008 Olympic Park.
Today, your day unfolds with a guided city tour of Beijing, viewing historic landmarks like Tian’anmen Square. It’s the largest open public square in the world, flanked by the imposing Tian’anmen Gate and crowned by a tower with a typical tiled roof and the Museums of History and Revolution. Tian’anmen (‘Gate of Heavenly Peace’) is the original gate of the Imperial Palace. Your city tour continues to the palace, better known as the Forbidden City. Admire this architectural masterpiece with exotic pavilions, serene courtyards, rich halls and flourishing gardens. Later, we visit the famed Silk Alley Markets boasting of more than 1000 stores.
Today, proceed to the train station to board your High-Speed Train to Shanghai. On arrival in Shanghai, transfer to your hotel for check in. Later, enjoy a Cruise on the Huangpu River, gazing at the mighty kyscrapers, the Monument Tower to the People’s Heroes, the famous Waibaidu Bridge and Huangpu Park on one bank, and the Orient Pearl TV Tower, International Convention Center, Jin Mao Building and the newly rising Pudong New Area on the other. The Yangpu and Nanpu bridges span the river. From the river, one can also view the ruins of ancient cannon emplacements and fortifications at Wusong and the magnificent view of the Yangtze River as it empties into the sea.
Today after breakfast, depart on a full day sightseeing tour of Shanghai. Experience a ride onboard by the world’s fastest train the Maglev Train one way. Later, see the alluring, centuries old Yu Yuan Gardens located in the Old Town of Shanghai, which recreates a beautiful landscape of pagodas, pavilions, rockeries, fountains, ancient trees and precious flowers, the Town God’s Temple, built in the 15 centuries, a well-known temple in Shanghai City.
Combined together, the Yu Yuan Gardens and Town God’s Temple makes the Shanghai Yu yuan Tourist Mart, which features streets and shops of Chinese jade and traditional handicrafts, as well as those of local snacks. Proceed towards The Bund and the Old City, where the great trading houses and banks had their headquarters in the early twentieth century, about a mile long, it is the city’s fulcrum. In the afternoon, head to Nanjing Road, the main street of the French Concession for some great value-for-money shopping. Visit the visually striking Oriental Pearl TV Tower-middle level. Evening, enjoy an astounding Acrobatic Show tonight. One of the oldest performing arts in the world, Chinese Acrobatics borrows elements from the opera, dance and Chinese Kung Fu merging them into a wholly distinctive style.
This morning, proceed to the airport for your flight to Kunming. On arrival, transfer to the hotel.
This morning, proceed for an orientation tour of Kunming. Later, proceed for the Stone Forest tour. Evening proceed to Kunming Airport for your flight back.