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11 Days Yangtze River Golden Route

Destinations: Beijing-Xian-Chongqing-Yangtze River Cruise-Yichang-Shanghai
Duration: 11 days
Tour Code: TBT-CH-Yangtze-02
Tour Type: Independent Private
Price from: US$ 1320
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Tour Map

  • Tour Map

    Tour Map

  • Beijing Badaling Great Wall

    Beijing Badaling Great Wall

  • Beijing Forbidden City

    Beijing Forbidden City

  • Beijing Temple of Heaven

    Beijing Temple of Heaven

  • Beijing Hutong Tour

    Beijing Hutong Tour

  • Xian Big Wild Goose Pagoda

    Xian Big Wild Goose Pagoda

  • Xian City Wall

    Xian City Wall

  • Yangtze Qutang Gorge

    Yangtze Qutang Gorge

  • Yangtze Wu Gorge

    Yangtze Wu Gorge

  • Shanghai Yuyuan Garden

    Shanghai Yuyuan Garden

Summary:

What the first destination will flash into your mind when you are planning to visit China? The mysterious Great Wall in Beijing? The remarkable Qin Terra-cotta Army in Xian? Or the romantic Bund in Shanghai? You will see them all in this 11-day tour. And of course, we will offer you a comfortable 3-night cruise along the mighty Yangtze River on one of the Three Gorges' top-rated floating hotels. You'll definitely be captivated by the sheer spectacle of your trip through the famous Three Gorges, and awe-struck by the modern engineering marvel of the Three Gorges Dam.

Day 1

Arrival Beijing
Arrive in Beijing, the capital city of China, be met at the airport and transferred to your hotel. Free at leisure for the rest of the day.
Meals: No Meals
Accommodation: In Beijing
 

Day 2

Beijing
Depart from your hotel in the morning to visit Tian'anmen Square, the World's largest urban square and the Forbidden City, the largest and most complete ancient imperial palace in the world. Then visit the Temple of Heaven in the afternoon. Peking Opera is available for your optional night entertainment. 
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch
Accommodation: In Beijing
 

Day 3

Beijing
In the morning you will take a driving about 75km to visit the Great Wall (Badaling Section) first, then go to the Summer Palace, the 'most beautiful garden in China', for a leisure stroll. Peking Roasted Duck is available for your optional dinner.
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch
Accommodation: In Beijing
 

Day 4

Beijing    Xian
In the morning, take a half-day Hutong Tour by rickshaw to visit the ancient lanes and alleyways of Beijing. Be transferred to the airport for the flight to Xian in the afternoon.
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch
Accommodation: In Xian
 

Day 5

Xian
Ample time will be provided for visits to the Qin Terracotta Army, one of the world's most important archaeological finds, with troops, horses and carriages in battle formation and then to see the Big Wild Goose Pagoda, and the massive City Wall. Either Jiaozi Banquet or Tang Dynasty Show with Dinner is available for your optional meal.
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch
Accommodation: In Xian
 

Day 6

Xian    Chongqing, Embark
Finish up Xian tour by visiting famous Shaanxi History Museum. Be transferred to the airport to board a short flight to Chongqing, from where, you will start your trip on the Yangtze River.
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch
Accommodation: On Yangtze cruise boat
 

Day 7

Yangtze River Cruise
Enjoy your Yangtze cruise!
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Accommodation: On Yangtze cruise boat
 

Day 8

Yangtze River Cruise
Today pass Three Gorges that namely Qutang Gorge, Wu Gorge and Xiling Gorge, during which take an excursion through Daning River Lesser Three Gorges.
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Accommodation: On Yangtze cruise boat
 

Day 9

Disembark, Yichang    Shanghai
Then it is time to pass through the locks of Three Gorge Dam that is the climax despite of the nature sightseeing. You could really feel the might of the dam. After the visiting, disembark at Yichang and be transferred to the airport for your flight to Shanghai. Arrive in Shanghai and be transferred to the hotel to catch up on some rest.
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch
Accommodation: In Shanghai
 

Day 10

Shanghai
A full day of sightseeing starts with Jade Buddha Temple and Yuyuan Garden, a Chinese classic garden in city downtown. Then visit the nearby old street. Continue the trip to Shanghai's new landmark- Shanghai World Financial Center. In the evening, have a walk along the Bund, Shanghai's famed waterfront promenade and Xintiandi. Traditional Dim-sum Banquet and acrobatics show are available for your optional lunch and night entertainment.
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch
Accommodation: In Shanghai
 

Day 11

Departure Shanghai
The vacation is over all too soon as you're transferred to the airport to board the homebound flight, bidding a fond farewell to China, and we know you'll be back.
Meals: Breakfast
 
Service Ends

Day 1

Arrival Beijing
Arrive in Beijing, the capital city of China, be met at the airport and transferred to your hotel. Free at leisure for the rest of the day.
Meals: No Meals
Accommodation: In Beijing
 
Beijing, China's capital and one of the great travel destinations of the World, offers sights and cultural relics found no where else on Earth. The city has a character all its own; there are quadrangles, small alleys, tricycle, boiled mutton, roasted duck, arts and crafts, Peking Opera, The Great Wall, the 2008 Olympics venue and a vibrancy that is the distinctive flavor of Beijing.
 

Day 2

Beijing
Depart from your hotel in the morning to visit Tian'anmen Square, the World's largest urban square and the Forbidden City, the largest and most complete ancient imperial palace in the world. Then visit the Temple of Heaven in the afternoon. Peking Opera is available for your optional night entertainment. 
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch
Accommodation: In Beijing
 
Tian'anmen SquareAs the biggest city center square in the world, Tian'anmen Square covering 44 hectares in the heart of Beijing. It is the place where history-changing events and ceremonies occurred. A few steps away, come to visit the Forbidden City, which was the Imperial Palace for 24 emperors during the Ming and Qing Dynasties and, it is one of the largest, and certainly the most completely restored, ancient architectural complex in the world. Walk in the footsteps of Emperors; come to the museum and see with your eyes, and feel with your hearts; you'll begin understand what life in this richest of feudal realms was like for the Imperial Rulers, their concubines and their slaves.
 
After enjoying a delicious lunch, continue on to the Temple of Heaven. Departing from the Imperial vermilion and gold hues of the Forbidden City, The Temple of Heaven is decorated in blue, the color of the Heavens. The perfect harmony between the architectural environment and nature can be felt here; you might easily imagine the vivid spectacle of a great sacrifice to the Heavens for a good harvest. The magnificent Hall of Prayer of Good Harvest is one of the most important and impressive building in China.
 
In the evening, we offer you an opportunity to enjoy Peking Opera. Expert performers convey powerful emotions to the audience through song, dance, facial make-up, exquisite masks and costume, skilled use of body language and sympathetically integrated musical accompaniment. 
 

Day 3

Beijing
In the morning you will take a driving about 75km to visit the Great Wall (Badaling Section) first, then go to the Summer Palace, the 'most beautiful garden in China', for a leisure stroll. Peking Roasted Duck is available for your optional dinner.
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch
Accommodation: In Beijing
 
Beijing Summer PalaceJust 75km North-west of Beijing, along a smooth and comfortable highway is the Badaling Section of the Great Wall, which is one of the best-preserved and most accessible sections. The Great Wall is an internationally admired structure, symbolic of the cruelty of the ancient rulers, and the stoicism and determination of the Chinese people. The construction of the Great Wall began in the 5th century BC. The wall has a total length of 6,700 km, for much of its length following extremely rugged and mountainous terrain, clinging to incredibly precipitous mountainsides; it is truly an engineering masterpiece by any standard, ancient or modern. It has been claimed that the Great Wall is the only man-made structure which is visible from the moon.
 
After enjoy your lunch, you will be transferred and took your time to make a visit to the "most beautiful garden in China"- the Summer Palace. Originally known as the "Garden of Clear Ripples", the Summer Palace is a magnificent imperial garden located 15 km north of Beijing City . This is the largest ancient preserved garden in China and a former summer retreat for Emperors and the chosen few! The site includes more than 100 ancient style pavilions, mansions, towers, halls, temples, bridges and an enormous clear water lake. What is most enjoyable about the Summer Palace, it is simply a gorgeous place to relax, escape the smoke and crowds of the city and spend an afternoon walking. It is said one could just as easily spend one week out here as one afternoon. Here is a rare chance in Beijing, to lose the crowds and 'clear away the cobwebs'.
 

Day 4

Beijing    Xian
In the morning, take a half-day Hutong Tour by rickshaw to visit the ancient lanes and alleyways of Beijing. Be transferred to the airport for the flight to Xian in the afternoon.
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch
Accommodation: In Xian
 
Beijing HutongIf exploring the Forbidden City has improved your understanding of the lifestyles of China's ancient Imperial Court , then this leisure Hutong Tour will give you an insight into the lives of ordinary Chinese people and reveal their social culture in today's Beijing City. The narrow streets of old Beijing are known as Hutongs. You'll take a pedicab tour along the Hutongs and see the 100-year-old houses, courtyards and a vanishing way of life in today's Beijing.
 
Xian, steeped in history and still giving up secrets, is your gateway to ancient Chinese civilization. In its 3,100 recorded years of evolution, it has been home to 13 dynasties. Xian was also the end of civilization for those setting out on the famous Silk Road. Today's Xian is a vibrant, modern city, but surrounded by history, even underfoot! So there can be no underground railways due to the obligation to preserve the wealth of ancient treasure still awaiting discovery.
 

Day 5

Xian
Ample time will be provided for visits to the Qin Terracotta Army, one of the world's most important archaeological finds, with troops, horses and carriages in battle formation and then to see the Big Wild Goose Pagoda, and the massive City Wall. Either Jiaozi Banquet or Tang Dynasty Show with Dinner is available for your optional meal.
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch
Accommodation: In Xian
 
Qin Terracotta ArmyAs an ancient capital city to 13 dynasties, Xian has a rich recorded history, frequently enhanced by the evidence of new discoveries, like the 1974 unearthing of the fabulous Qin Terracotta Army, the long forgotten army created to guard Emperor Qin Shihuang's tomb. In accordance with ancient beliefs, this grand project was mounted at enormous cost by the cruel and tyrannical Emperor, only to be attacked, plundered, burnt and buried after his funeral by the peasants who'd labored under the whip to build it. Then, over two thousand years later, this 'Eighth Wonder of the World' was rediscovered by farmers digging a well. The fine troops, horses and carriages in battle formation are a National ancient art treasure. Three excavation pits are now opened to the public and a fourth is nearing completion. You can, like US President Clinton, now gaze in wonder upon this historic site, listed by UNESCO in 1987 as a world cultural heritage.
 
The Big Wild Goose Pagoda was built in 652 during the Tang Dynasty and originally had five stories, although the structure was rebuilt in 704 during the reign of Empress Wu Zetian and its exterior brick facade renovated during the Ming Dynasty. One of the pagoda's many functions was to hold sutras and figurines of the Buddha that were brought to China from India by the Buddhist translator and travelers Xuanzang. Now this well-preserved holy place for Buddhist has been the symbol of Xi'an.
 
Continue the trip to the nearby Xian City Wall, which stretches round the old city. Xi'an was always a walled city, and today's wall represents one of the oldest and best preserved Chinese city walls, as well being one of the largest ancient military defensive systems in the world. The first city wall of Chang'an was begun in 194 BCE. The existing wall was started during the Ming Dynasty in 1370; it is massive, measuring 13.7 km in circumference, 12 m in height, and 15–18 m in thickness at the base. The South Gate and North Gate are the two main entrances to the inner city. The city itself is neatly arranged along the city wall. This impressive structure is just a precursor to the remarkable discoveries awaiting visitors to Xian.
 
This evening you could choose Jiaozi Banquet as a local flavor experience. It includes over 10 kinds of Jiaozi, whose shapes and flavours vary, such as rabbit, duck, shrimp, peanuts and so on.
 
Or if you more interested in dancing show, choose a Tang Dynasty Show with Dinner would be a good idea. You'll enjoy the sumptuous dinner while watching a fabulous dancing and singing performance of the Tang Dynasty. This is not only a performance of Chinese traditional dancing and singing, but a re-enactment of Chinese ancient ceremony and culture.
 

Day 6

Xian    Chongqing, Embark
Finish up Xian tour by visiting famous Shaanxi History Museum. Be transferred to the airport to board a short flight to Chongqing, from where, you will start your trip on the Yangtze River.
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch
Accommodation: On Yangtze cruise boat
 
Shaanxi History MuseumAs the regional capital and doorway to the Silk Road, Xian was one of the richest, most well-protected cities in all of China. The famous Shaanxi History Museum introduces the visitor to area's rich culture, from Emperor Qin Shihuang to the present day in this walled city. The museum is house in a striking Tang Dynasty-style pavilion and features an enormous collection of 113,000 historic and cultural relics. This is where you experience history, with chronological dynasties exhibits that take you through the dynasties.
 
Chongqing, the largest inland city of China, is a booming metropolis located in the southeast of the Sichuan Basin at the confluence of the Yangtze and the Jialing rivers. Surrounded by waters on three sides, and by the mountains on four sides, Chongqing is known as 'mountain city', 'foggy city' and 'furnace city'.
 

Day 7

Yangtze River Cruise
Enjoy your Yangtze cruise!
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Accommodation: On Yangtze cruise boat
 
Fengdu Ghost CityToday you will stop for a visit to Fengdu, is located on the northern bank of the Yangtze 176km downstream from Chongqing. Fengdu received its reputation in the Eastern Han Dynasty. A plethora of demon-decorated temples, buildings and statues in this river town earned it the moniker "Ghost City"-the carved facades are truly fascinating. The temples built on Mt. Mishan display punishing instruments and wild demon images, which vividly depict the Chinese people's imagination of Hell. Another classic site – Shibaozhai may for your optional visiting.
 

Day 8

Yangtze River Cruise
Today pass Three Gorges that namely Qutang Gorge, Wu Gorge and Xiling Gorge, during which take an excursion through Daning River Lesser Three Gorges.
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Accommodation: On Yangtze cruise boat
 
This morning, rise early to see the dawn light the Yangtze River before the boat enters the first gorge- Qutang Gorge, the shortest (8 km), narrowest and the most dramatic one of the three gorges. Two mountains, Chijia (Red Passage) and Baiyan (White Salt), guard the entrance to this gorge like giant castle doors.
 
Mt. WuhanAfter the first gorge you will stop at Mt.Wushan and then change to a smaller boat for the visit of Lesser Three Gorges. Those small gorges are respectively, Dragon-Gate Gorge, Misty Gorge and Emerald Gorge. You can change to a smaller boat to enjoy these marvelous spectacles of nature. You may well find Daning river's waters are pristine, and the river is narrower and the cliffs embracing it are even steeper and higher than those along the major Three Gorges.  
 
A few hours later you see the second gorge - Wu Gorge, the middle gorge which is best known for its quiet beauty, sheer cliffs and twelve unique peaks. Often veiled in swirls of mist, six line the north side of the river and six staggered peaks stand to the south. The most famous, Goddess Peak, resembles a kneeling maiden.
 
The longest of the three, Xiling Gorge (66 kilometers), is also the deepest, with sheer cliffs rising 4000 feet. It is actually comprised of seven smaller gorges, whose varied names are all based upon ancient legends, like Military Books and Precious Sword. Xiling Gorge had a reputation for being an unpleasant section where dangerous reefs and shoals lurked, and ships and boats frequently overturned in this area; however, as the level of the river rises behind the wall of the Three Gorges Dam, this wild part of the river is tamed.
 

Day 9

Disembark, Yichang    Shanghai
Then it is time to pass through the locks of Three Gorge Dam that is the climax despite of the nature sightseeing. You could really feel the might of the dam. After the visiting, disembark at Yichang and be transferred to the airport for your flight to Shanghai. Arrive in Shanghai and be transferred to the hotel to catch up on some rest.
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch
Accommodation: In Shanghai
 
Three Gorges DamToday you will take a visit to the great Three Gorges Dam. It is 2,335-meter long, 185-meter high, 18-meter wide on the top and 130-meter wide at the bottom. The dam will raise the river to a level of 175 meters above sea level, creating a 600km long reservoir with storage capacity of 39.9 billion cubic meters extending from the dam site all the way to Chongqing. It is the largest water conservancy project ever undertaken. 
 
Then, return to your boat and have a nice lunch, it is really the time for you to say goodbye to the crews. You will take a flight from Yichang airport to Shanghai. For Shanghai, you have a lot to expect.
 
Shanghai is a city unlike any other in China. It is the bustling economic heartbeat of China that enjoys all of the comforts and amenities of a fully modern metropolis. Shanghai today looks to regain its former position at the turn of 20th of being one of the largest financial centers in the world behind New York and London. It is a city that seamlessly blends East and West.
 

Day 10

Shanghai
A full day of sightseeing starts with Jade Buddha Temple and Yuyuan Garden, a Chinese classic garden in city downtown. Then visit the nearby old street. Continue the trip to Shanghai's new landmark- World Financial Center. In the evening, have a walk along the Bund, Shanghai's famed waterfront promenade and Xintiandi. Traditional Dim-sum Banquet and acrobatics show are available for your optional lunch and night entertainment.
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch
Accommodation: In Shanghai
 
Yuyuan GardenToday you'll find a Buddhism shrine - Jade Buddha Temple, which is located in a crowd of Shanghai City. It was first built in 1882 in Jiangwan on the southern outskirts of Shanghai. In order to make it convenient for the adherents to visit, it was bodily moved to Shanghai City at the present sire in 1918. It is named for its two bejeweled white jade Buddha. It receives thousands of visitors and worshipers everyday while keeps its sanctity and charming. Carved from a whole piece of white jade, the sitting jade Buddha statue is translucent with a solemn expression, displaying the excellent skill and extraordinary art of Chinese people.
 
Yuyuan Garden has a lot of stories for it was severely damaged in the 19th century and was restored in 1961. This garden was first built in the 16th century by provincial governor, Pan Yunduan, in honor of his father who was the then government minister. It has many scenic courtyards decorated with baroque rockery, pools, and flora that are all connected by corridors and passageways. The delicate design and exquisite layout of the whole garden reveals a strong impression of 'garden in the garden, whole in the part.
 
Shanghai World Financial Center is a super tall skyscraper in Pudong New Area, Shanghai. It is a mixed use skyscraper which consists of offices, hotels, conference rooms, observation decks, and shopping malls on the ground floors. On 14 September 2007 the skyscraper was topped out at 492.0 meters (1,614.2 feet) and became the second tallest building in the world; as well as the tallest structure on mainland China, including Hong Kong. 
 
Then it comes to the Bund, the showcase with the old buildings of colonial-era leftover along Huangpu River. The renowned waterfront district is the city's most famous landmark. The word BUND is of Anglo-India origin meaning embankment on the waterfront. It is also the popular site to enjoy the night view of the city. 
 
Xintiandi is a car-free shopping, eating and entertainment area of Shanghai, China. It is composed of an area of restored traditional shikumen (stone gate) houses on narrow alleys, a modern shopping mall with a cinema complex, and some adjoining houses which now serve as book stores, cafes and restaurants. Most of the cafes and restaurants feature both indoor and outdoor seatings. Xintiandi has an active nightlife on weekdays as well as weekends, though romantic settings are more common than loud music and dance places. Xintiandi means "New Heaven and Earth", and is considered one of the first lifestyle centers in China.
 
Shanghai offers colorful recreations with rich contents and creative form. Your night may be filled with an interactive old form of art known as the Acrobatics. Those professional performers have been trained of as early as age six or seven so that they can play so well and excellent. It definitely will be an unforgettable night in your memory.
 

Day 11

Departure, Shanghai
The vacation is over all too soon as you're transferred to the airport to board the homebound flight, bidding a fond farewell to China, and we know you'll be back.
Meals: Breakfast
 
Service Ends

Full price of this tour (per person in US$):

JAN, FEB, DEC MAR, JUN, JUL, AUG APR, MAY, SEP, OCT, NOV
Group Size Using Standard Hotel
★★★
Using First Class Hotel
★★★★
Using Deluxe Hotel
★★★★★
Double
Occupancy
Sole
Occupancy
Double
Occupancy
Sole
Occupancy
Double
Occupancy
Sole
Occupancy
1 person   2662   2825   3350
2-5 persons 1761 2248 1847 2411 2121 2936
6-9 persons 1503 1990 1589 2153 1863 2678
10 persons & above 1320 1766 1411 1938 1694 2481
Group Size Using Standard Hotel
★★★
Using First Class Hotel
★★★★
Using Deluxe Hotel
★★★★★
Double
Occupancy
Sole
Occupancy
Double
Occupancy
Sole
Occupancy
Double
Occupancy
Sole
Occupancy
1 person   2938   3099   3963
2-5 persons 1925 2524 2009 2685 2468 3549
6-9 persons 1667 2266 1751 2427 2210 3291
10 persons & above 1473 2035 1567 2214 1917 2883
Group Size Using Standard Hotel
★★★
Using First Class Hotel
★★★★
Using Deluxe Hotel
★★★★★
Double
Occupancy
Sole
Occupancy
Double
Occupancy
Sole
Occupancy
Double
Occupancy
Sole
Occupancy
1 person   3010   3226   4208
2-5 persons 1961 2596 2072 2813 2591 3795
6-9 persons 1703 2338 1814 2555 2333 3537
10 persons & above 1562 2160 1683 2395 2185 3342

Remarks:
1.The prices quoted here are only valid from March 1, 2011 to March 1, 2012. TCT reserves the right to adjust the prices of any portion of the tour due to the reasons beyond our control without prior notice.
2.All quotation is in US dollar (per person), and based on the exchange rate between CNY and USD in effect at the time of publishing. It is subject to change.
3.The quotation on our website is also subject to change during some Chinese festivals, national holidays, fairs or events, when hotels may levy higher rates which will be advised on a case by case basis.
4.The availabilities of rooms, flights and etc. are subject to change until the actual booking is been made.
5.Specific requests such as adjacent or connecting rooms, bedding requests, smoking or non-smoking rooms and special dietary needs should be subjected to reconfirm upon your arrival. We would put on your request to the Hotel.
 
Price includes:
1. Airport/railway station welcome and private transfers between airports/railway stations, hotels and sightseeing spots. Separate arrivals and departures will incur extra charges.
2. Domestic airfare of economic class or train ticket(s) as mentioned in the itinerary. Airport construction fee and fuel surcharge are included.
3. Accommodation (if include Yangtze cruiser) based on two adults sharing one standard twin-bed room (cabin); solo travelers or those who want to occupy one twin-bed room/cabin of their own are required to pay additional charge of single supplement rate (S.SUPP in above price table). A single room (cabin) is subject to availability based on prior request at an additional cost; if the recommended hotel is not available, it will be substituted by a similar one.
4. Driver and English-speaking guide service on normal sightseeing activities noted in the itinerary.
5. All entrance fees to scenic spots as shown in the itinerary. The final arrangement will be determined by local tour guides based on the local circumstances which are beyond the control of TopChinaTravel. TCT will adhere to the original itinerary as accurately as possible.
6. Travel insurance.
7. Government taxes.
 
Price excludes:
1.Round way International airfare or train tickets, unless otherwise noted.
2.Visa fee, passport application or renewal fee.
3.Tips for guides, escort, drives, bellman, etc.
4.Personal expenses such as excess luggage fees, laundry, postage, communications and beverages.
5.Optional meals and shows mentioned in the itinerary, which will be added up if the clients desire to take the activities.
6.Any extra cost caused by changes of natural disasters, fires, weather, governmental and local authority orders, political change, strikes, war, riots, quarantine, custom regulations, damages or injury caused by accident beyond the control of TopChinaTravel and that has incurred due to the tourist action violating the laws.
7.Any items not specified in the plan.

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