Explore the Heart of Ancient China
Two full days and a half day sightseeing covering the grand Tiananmen Square, historical Forbidden City, spectacular Temple of Heaven, manmade wonder Great Wall of China, royal park Summer Palace, traditional Hutong, etc.
Start to trave from Datong to visit Yungang Grottoes and Hanging Temple, then transfer to Pingyao via Taiyuan city. Spend two days to visit Pingya highlights, including Pingyao Ancient City and Qiao's Family Compound, etc. Then take a high speed train to Xian.
One full day to visit the incredible Terracotta Warriors, leisurely walk on the Ancient City Wall and Muslim Quarter. Before leaving for Shanghai, explore the Big Wild Goose Pagoda and Shaan’xi History Museum.
Ni Hao, welcome to Beijing, the iconic city as well as the capital of China! You will be met by local tour guide at the arrival hall of Beijing Airport and escorted to check in your hotel in downtown by a private comfortable vehicle. The rest of today is on your own to relax. If you want to explore nearby, feel free to get some practical suggestions from your tour guide.
After breakfast, start to explore the historical face of Beijing with a brief visit to Tiananmen Square, now the largest city plaza in the world. Tiananmen Gate on the northern side of the square was the site where Chairman Mao announced the establishment of the People's Republic of China. Stepping into the Tiananmen, you will see one of the world’s five most important palaces – the Forbidden City, a huge palace complex of more than 9,000 rooms where 24 emperors of the Ming and Qing Dynasties lived. Pass through various doorways in this magnificent structure to admire the beautiful and well preserved buildings decorated with yellow-glazed tile roofs, white marble bases and splendid colorful paintings.
Next activity is to hop on a rickshaw to experience Beijing Hutongs – small alleys made of neighboring quadrangle dwellings. Shuttle among different Hutongs to feel the old Beijing life style, meet various antique shops and small boutiques, feel the historical changes of Beijing, also pay a visit to a local family’s home in the traditional Hutongs.
After lunch, drive to the outskirts of Beijing to spend an enjoyable time in the Summer Palace, the largest and best-preserved royal garden in China. Stroll around ancient pavilions, mansions, temples, bridges and corridors while feasting your eyes on the vast lotus in Kunming Lake and the colorful paintings in the Long Corridor.
After breakfast, drive from your hotel to visit the imperial site – Temple of Heaven. It was originally used to pay homage to Heaven and pray for harvest, now becomes a bustling place for locals to take part in traditional activities, such as Tai Chi, dancing, kite flying, water calligraphy, etc.
The rest of today is to drive about 70km to witness one of the Seven Wonders of the World - the Great Wall. You will visit the Mutianyu, a less crowded yet well-preserved segment of the Great Wall built in the Ming Dynasty. It will more than live up to all of your expectations! This great wall, linking Gubeikou in the east and Juyongguan in the west, was served as the vital military strategic point in the ancient time. Moreover, Mutianyu section is the “longest great wall in China” so far and since protection work is well done here, tourists can now see its original appearance and enjoy the real ancient culture of great wall. Also, spectacular natural scenery in Mutianyu Great Wall always impresses visitors here for its abundant vegetation. You’ll take a cable car to ascend the Great Wall, then hike the most beautiful and interesting part of Mutianyu. It's a wonderful experience to climb up its rising towers to enjoy scenic views and take brag-worthy photos of the wall wriggling along mountain ridges. After the exciting time, descend Mutianyu Great Wall by cable car. (Note: If energy permits, you can hike up or down which takes about 40 minutes to climb steps. Please tell your likes to your travel consultant.)
After the Great Wall visit, drive back to Beijing city and take a short stop at the Beijing Olympic Village to see its famous Bird’s Nest and Water Cube from the outside.
Optional activity: After the whole day’s tour, treat yourself a great dinner to taste the famous Peking Roasted Duck at Quanjude.
Get up early, you will be escorted to the train station and take a high speed bullet train to Datong from Beijing (about 2-2.5 hours). Upon arrival, be met by your local tour guide, and start to explore Datong highlights.
First site to visit is the famous Yungang Grottoes. Listed as World Heritage Site by UNESCO in 2001, Yungang Grottoes was built in Northern Wei Dynasty (368 - 534). Its Buddhist culture and art involve in architecture, history, music and other aspects of Chinese culture, representing the highest achievement in Buddhist art in 5th to 6th century as the essence of oriental sculpture art. Yungang Grottoes is one of the top three grottoes in China, along with Mogao Grottoes in Dunhuang and Longmen Grottoes in Luoyang. There are 45 major grottoes in total and 209 secondary caves, with about 1100 niches and 51000 statues. The biggest statue is 17 meters high and the smallest one is only 2 centimeters high.
After lunch, move on to Huayan Temple, the largest and best preserved monastery of the Liao dynasty, consisting of upper and lower parts. Later, continue to have a look at Nine Dragon Screen, the oldest and largest glazed screen in China. The dragons on the wall appear so vivid and marvelous that you cannot imagine they were built over 600 years ago.
After breakfast, drive to visit the Hanging Temple, built on the cliffs of Mt. Hengshan, one of the five most sacred mountains in China. It is the only existing temple which combines Buddhism, Taoism and Confucianism together in China. The temple was constructed in the late Northern Wei Dynasty (491AD), protruding from the cliff of Cuiping Peak and is 50 meters above the ground. The Times magazine selected the Hanging Temple as one of the Top 10 Unique and Precipitous Architectures in 2010.
Then, moving on to the Yingxian Wooden Pagoda, the oldest preserving wooden Buddhist pagoda in China, which is only 50 km away from the Hanging Temple.
After the tour, drive to train station to catch your high speed train to Pingyao (about 2.5~3 hrs).
After breakfast, your guide will pick you up to start Pingyao Ancient City exploration. As one of the best-preserved ancient cities in China, Pingyao Ancient City is listed as a UNESCO World Cultural Heritage Site because of its brilliant cultural magnificence. With a history over 2700 years, Pingyao Ancient City still keeps its intact charm: ancient city walls, elegant courtyards, scattered temples, all reflecting the urban planning style between 1368 and 1911 during the Ming and Qing Dynasties. Your tour starts from the Ancient City Wall of Pingyao, where you can have a panorama view of the layout of this town. Then you will move on to the Rishengchang Former Bank, which shows you the original bank system in the past. Next, stroll on the traditional Ming and Qing Street, a cobbled road with old buildings on either side. It's much like tracing back to the former bustle bazaar in the old days. Later, visit the Temple of City God to appreciate the wonderful wood carvings, paintings and sculptures in the old temple.
After Pingyao Ancient City exploration, drive about 15 minutes to visit Shuanglin Temple, where you will be impressed by its large number of clay figures and wooden sculptures of various gods, goddesses and saints.
Return to your hotel after Shuanglin Temple visit.
Optional activity: Enjoy the excellent drama show of Another Glance at Pingyao (19:00~20:30) which presents local life, prosperity and recession of Pingyao during Qing dynasty vividly.
After breakfast, drive about 1 hour to Zhangbi Ancient Castle, which is a series of tunnels dug to hide out in times of war in over 1380 years ago. You will be amazed by the fabulous feat of architecture and engineering in ancient time.
Later, move to Wang's Family Compound which is reputed as an art museum of traditional Chinese architecture and “Forbidden City in Folk”. It is a building complex of multi-generation endeavor of Jingsheng Wang family through the Ming and Qing dynasties for more than 300 years, including five lanes and 6 forts and 231 courtyards, 2,078 rooms and a street with a total area of 250,000 square meters. Within the courtyards are rooms, kitchens, schools, and prayer pavilions. The architectural layout of the Wang Family Compound inherits the courtyard style formed in the Western Zhou Dynasty (1046 BC~771 BC) – halls in front and bedroom at back which not only provides enough space for social activities, but also satisfies the requirements of the family privacy. Young and orderly, men and women, hosts and workers are accommodated in different areas, which fully reflects the majesty of the official family and the regularity of the patriarchal etiquette in ancient China.
After the tour, transfer to the train station to take a high speed train to Xian. Upon arrival at Xian, be transferred to check in to your hotel. The rest time is free for you to relax.
After breakfast, drive about 40km to discover one of the greatest man-made wonders in the world – Terracotta Warriors and Horses, built by the first emperor Qin Shihuang to protect his afterlife. Over 8, 000 life-size warriors, horses and chariots, buried in 3 pits more than 2000 years until uncovered by local farmer in 1974, forms an ancient military army with complete battle unites, such as infantry, cavalry, etc. Standing in front of these figures, one can’t help being amazed not only by the ambition of Qin Shihuang but also the fabulous artistic skills of ancient Chinese artisans.
After lunch, return back to Xian to take a wonderful stroll on the Ancient City Wall, the largest and best-preserved ancient city wall in China. Enjoy panoramic views of modern Xian and walk leisurely on the well-maintained city wall which is 12 meters high and 18 meters wide with a total circle of nearly 14 kilometers. It is followed by a relaxing wandering around bustling and lively Muslim Community, where you can taste the most delicious Xian food and various snacks, as well as experience local culture.
Optional activities: 1). Take a relaxing cycling on the Ancient City Wall; 2). Enjoy a wonderful Tang Palace Dance Show after a hearty dumpling dinner.
After breakfast, head to Da Cien Temple, a famous Buddhist sutra translation place in Tang Dynasty. Big Wild Goose Pagoda is the most famous building in the temple. With a height of 64.5 meters, the pagoda was built by the famous Buddhist master Xuanzang to reserve classic scriptures he bought from India in early Tang Dynasty. (Xuanzang, the prototype character of Tang Seng in the novel of Journey to the West). (Note: It charges extra 30 RMB to climb up the Big Wild Goose Pagoda)
Following is an educational visiting to Shaanxi History Museum. Ramble in the modern exhibition halls to appreciate relics, such as porcelains, paintings, currencies from Zhou to the Tang periods (1100BC to 907 AD).
The rest of today is free for you until get escorted to catch your flight/train to next destination. Tour ends.
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1. This price is for one person, based on a group of 2 adults sharing one standard double-bed room in 4-star hotel and traveling with our private tour in low seasons.
2. This price is subject to change according your traveling season, group size, hotel class, change of activities in your itinerary and possible fluctuation of currency exchange rate. If you want a lower price, you can get more people to join you, or use economy class hotels.
3. This price is only valid to March 31, 2023.
4. Reference exchange rate of USD 1=RMB 6.85. The final quote is based on current exchange rate. It may change according to the currency fluctuation, while the RMB quotation will be remained the same.
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I have tried to leave the following review with tripadvisor several times now but somehow it is not accepted, I do not know why.
"Just back from our 9-day trip to Yunnan, long planned and waited for. It was our second time with China Discovery Tours. Once again they tailored the tour according to our ideas and interests - and succeeded in surprising us! Thanks to the local guides we learned a lot about history, traditions and customs, and, of course, food. We always felt in safe hands and the organization was just perfect with enough on spot flexibility. Big thanks to Jack who figured it all out so well and to the next time with China Discovery! Johannes (GER) & Elizabeth (GRC)"
Thanks again for an excellent trip, best regards, Johannes&Elizabeth
It's was great, we loved it! Our tour guide Frank was very kind, informative, and funny :) We loved how easy it was and how much we got to see in a day, I will definitely recommend to our friends!
we will be happy to when we get back to Shanghai It was a great trip and Kevin was a wonderful guide!
Absolutely fantastic trip. We enjoyed every moment and the guides were all really good.
I might only have one more year in China and I would like to see more. I believe that the best way for me is smaller trips leaving Thursday evening and returning Sunday.
Thank for our trip. Well organised. Driver & guide were super ! We have been lucky to have a sunny weather and the lantern festival! And not toooooo cold, only if you compare to the week before !
To make your life more colorful and interesting, you could take our best-selected optional activities in the most popular destinations like Beijing, Xian, and Shanghai.
You have the final say whether you want it or not. It would be better to decide when you are in the destinations. On one hand, the shows and performances may change according to season and weather. On the other hand, you can check your physical condition, time and discuss with your experienced local guide who may give you useful suggestions. If you are interested, your patient guide will accompany you there and escort you back to your hotel. Please pay attention that extra fee is charged for the optional shows and activities.
Place: Beijing Red Theater
Show Time: Daily 17:15 - 18:30 and 19:30 - 20:45
Nearby Attractions: Temple of Heaven
Useful Advice: You’d better watch it after visiting Temple of Heaven on the second day in Beijing.
Beijing Kung Fu Show is a mix of traditional martial arts and modern dance which has become the most loved Kung Fu show in China. The Kung Fu show not only shows about the performance of Chinese Kung Fu, but also tells about the story of Chinese young boy who dreams to become a Kung Fu master. The whole story includes seven scenes from “Initiation”, “Learning”, “Casting”, “Illusion”, “Remorse”, “Passing through the Gate”, to “Enlightenment”. It will be a memorable experience to watch the Legend of Kung Fu when traveling in Beijing.
Place: Several restaurants are offered. You may use the one close to tourist sites and your hotel.
Nearby Attractions: Forbidden City, Tiananmen Square, Temple of Heaven
Useful Advice: Enjoy Beijing Roast Duck after visiting Great Wall on the third day in Beijing.
To enjoy the local flavor of Beijing, you should not miss Beijing Roast Duck. The roast duck is with thin, crisp skin and tempting color and its meat is fresh, tender, rich and fat but not greasy. Getting into the roast duck restaurants, you could catch the chance to know more about how a Beijing Roast Duck is made and watch the cook slice the duck into pieces with both skin and meat for each. When taste the duck, you could wrap duck, scallion, cucumber in a pancake or a sesame bun. Also, you could choose some other spices and sauce when tasting the delicious duck.
Place: Yiyuan Theater
Show Time: 19:30 - 20:50
Nearby Attractions: Temple of Heaven
Useful Advice: A good optional activity for you who have more free evenings in Beijing
Beijing Opera is the quintessence of Chinese culture which combines literature, music, dance, vocal performance, fine arts, acrobatics and many other arts. Travelers could enjoy charming Beijing Opera in Liyuan Theater in the evening. The repertoire of Liyuan is an interesting combination of delightful humor and old Beijing culture. You could enjoy the four parts Beijing Opera repertoires - “Farewell My Concubine”, “The Crossroads”, “A Bird in Cage” and “Drunken Beauty”. By enjoying the repertoires, you could have better understanding about the four main types of performers, Chinese literature, music and art.
Dinner Time: around 18:30 -19:50
Show Time: around 20:00 – 21:00
There are three options for you: enjoy Dumpling Dinner and Tang Palace Dance Show together, only Dumpling Dinner, only Tang Palace Dance Show. If you want to do both, you’ll enjoy the Chinese traditional dumpling banquet first and then the fabulous Tang Palace dance and music. During the dinner, travelers could taste many combinations of dumplings, all shapes, sizes and flavors. While, the Tang Palace Dance Show take you to a magical journey through the ancient and prosperous Tang Dynasty (618-907). Enjoy the story told through impressive acting, dance and singing, traditional orchestra. It will be an amazing evening for your life in Xian.
Time: about 2 hours
Length: 13.7 km
Bike Rent: You can rent a bike near South Gate City Wall
Useful Advice: You could choose to ride part of the wall instead of whole circle.
Xian Ancient City Wall stands 12 meters tall and 12-14 meters wide at the top. It is quiet suitable for riding a bike on the wall which covers a length of 13.7 km. Start from South Gate City Wall and ride and pass East Gate, North Gate and West Gate and 98 ramparts and more. Moreover, along the riding, you’ll experience the local customs of the street market, see the historical relics and have a look at the modern side of Xian.
Place: Several world class theaters are offered. You could use the one based on your likes.
Show Time: 19:30 - 21:00
Watching acrobatic in Shanghai is a magic experience for an exciting out in Shanghai. It is performed by the main troupes - Shanghai Acrobatic Troupe or Shanghai Circus World. Travelers could watch world famous Shanghai Acrobatic Troupe performs programs like Hula Hoops, Squeezing through the Barrel, Juggling Benches, Balancing on the Chair, Pagoda of Benches, Bicycle Skill, Play Diabolo, Kicking Bowls on the Bicycle, etc. Also, enjoy the famous “Ball of Death” with fast action and fun. If you like, you could choose to watch “Era - Intersection of Time” with many highlights presented.
Route: Shanghai Pudong International Airport - Shanghai Longyang Road Station
Operation Time: Longyang Road Station: First Train: 06:45; Last Train: 21:40. Pudong Internation Airport Station: First Train: 07:02; Last Train: 21:42.
Useful Advice: Make sure you’ll arrive at Pudong Airport and arrival time is able to take it.
If you arrive in Shanghai at Pudong International Airport, taking a high-tech maglev train to Pudong New Area will be awesome experience for your first stop in Shanghai. Also, you could transfer from downtown to the airport. It is available from 06:45 to 21:42, with services every 15 to 20 minutes. The 30 km journey just takes 7 minutes and 20 seconds. You could imagine how fast it is.
Available Cruising: in the daytime & at night
Duration: about 45 minutes
Useful Advice: Cruise ships vary in size, decoration and amenities. Choose the one which best suits for your time.
Huangpu River is a silent eyewitness to Shanghai’s history and development. Taking a cruise on Huangpu River will let you witness modern side of Shanghai and feel the old Shanghai culture. The cruise ships usually depart from the wharf close to the Bund. After board on the ship, you’ll view many spectacular sights both on the west and east bank along Huangpu River. Along west bank, see The Bund, Monument to the People’s Heroes, Waibaidu Bridge, etc. Along the east bank, view Shanghai Oriental Pearl TV Tower, Jinmao Tower, Lujiazui Financial Zone, etc.
You need to pack some personal gears, such as light and comfortable walking shoes, outdoor coat and pants. You'd better also pack sun cream, sun glasses.
1. A valid passport, a valid China visa and Tibet Permits are necessary documents for traveling in Tibet.
2. In Tibet, we suggest you avoid strong activity; do not take shower at the first day; drink more water and avoid of alcohol; better not to take oxygen if your AMS symptoms are mild. Always remember that if you have any problems or feel uncomfortable, please tell your guide immediately or contact our travel consultant.
3. A windbreaker, a pair of durable and comfortable shoes, a down jacket (better with hat), sunscreen cream, sun block, skin cream and lip balm, sunglasses, medicine for urgent use.
Chengdu Research Base of Panda Breeding is only available to see giant pandas. If you are interested in giant panda volunteer experience, please extend to Dujiangyan Panda Base, Wolong Shenshuping Panda Base or Ya'an Bifengxia Panda Base instead.
Taking high speed train to travel around China will be unique and special experience for you. Instead of taking flight, you can take high speed train from Beijing to Xian/Xian to Beijing, Chengdu to Chongqing, Yichang to Shanghai/Shanghai to Yichang, etc. All are within comfortable traveling time to reach the destinations. If you are interested, please feel free to ask our travel consultants to arrange high speed train for you.
Vegetarian food in Chinese cuisine culture is usually divided into 3 categories: the Monastery Vegetarian Food, the Court Vegetarian Food and the Folk Vegetarian Food. And the main ingredients are: soybean, taro powder, mushrooms, fresh vegetables and tofu (bean curd). It will be easier to find the vegetarian restaurants in big cities of china, such as: Beijing, Shanghai, Xian, HK, etc.
We suggest you to list any food or ingredients that you are allergic to and let our travel consultant know. Then your travel consultant will mark them in the guide’s itinerary, so that our guides in different cities can make some preparations and arrangements in advance.
The tour guides and driver will be at the same restaurants with you, but they will only join the meal when you invite. Sometimes the drivers are shy to join as they usually eat fast and could not understand English talk around the table, so the guide will be with you more often.
Yes, you will. There will be some meals excluded in your itinerary as you like, and your private guide will be delighted to give you some suggestions and take you to the local restaurants, if you are interested in local food tasting. But remember, some local snacks may not match your stomach, so ask your guided for more information before eating.
In China, there are myriads of souvenirs for visitors, and each city has its own specialty.
Some of the best buys are:
Bargains are not acceptable in big supermarkets and department stores. But in some night markets or tourist shops, you can bargain for a lower price, since the vendors always ask for very high price for a certain item. You’d better ask the opinion of the guide first, and then the guide will tell you the real value and quality of the item. Please note that when the bargain is processing, the guide will be hesitate to help as it may annoy the bosses. Just try to let the guides know you will bargain in advance.
If you do not need something from them, just do not ask for price. Some of the venders are very persisted, and if they keep selling things to you, you can simply say “No, thanks.” (Chinese pronunciation: ”Bu, XieXie”). If they do not give up, you just keep silence. Silence is sometimes useful to handle this situation.
Call your guide, or if you can’t find your guide, call your travel consultant or our office immediately. All the phone numbers include in our confirmation letter. Keep the letter with your during your trip.
Note: As our Beijing office is using the different guide arranging system, so we will not be able to provide the Beijing guide information until the day before you arrival, but once we have it, we will email you immediately.
"Highest Standards of Quality and Honesty" is the core value of each specialized team at China Discovery.
Eveyone in our company is working hard for only one goal, which is to ensure the highest level of service, luxury, and attention to detail from the minute you begin planning your trip, to the day you return home.
Our travel consultants are professional, experienced and responsible, helping you from the very beginning to the end of your China trip!
After sending us an inquiry, one of our travel consultants will get back to you within 0.5~23.5 hrs. In the next few days, he/she will be working closely with you to formulate a customized tour plan, as well as providing professional suggestions based on your travel interests, time, and budget.
Beside, he/she will keep in contact with you during your entire tour in China, continually checking if everything is going well as planned.
We're working at Chengdu Bamboo International Tours, local based in Chengdu.
Our local guide in every destination is not only very friendly, enthusiastic but also very informative and knowledgeable.
Once you arrive in the destination, the patient and punctual guides will pick you up and take you to get under skin of the city at your own pace. By in-depth discovery and explanation, they’ll show you more about the history, culture, customs and authentic local life. Throughout the journey, they're not only expert guides who take care of all the details but also fellow travelers who are dedicated to help you explore in comfort and style.
Our guides are passionate about what they do, and it shows all the way!
Using our private transfer service makes you comfortable, relaxed and worry free all the way!
Our private service includes licensed drivers with many years’ driving experience and air-conditioned, non-smoking, clean and well-maintained cars/vans. Drivers are local, polite, friendly and helpful, taking you to your tourist sites, hotels, airport/train stations in safety. All kinds of vehicle are offered, and yours depends on the size of your group. Usually, we offer sedan cars, SUVs, business vans (MPV) and different types of buses, all with extra space for your luggage.
Our private transfer service guarantees you the highest comfort!
In each destination, you’ll enjoy a comfortable stay in a great location!
The hotels we choose are based on star rating, great locations, well-equipped facilities, cozy bed, high quality service and guests’ feedbacks. Choices are a lot ranging from luxury 5 star, comfortable 4 star to budget 3 star. You could decide where to stay to best suit for your budget and likes. Generally, the hotels have both Western and Chinese breakfast with a wide choices.
If you have already got an ideal hotel, please feel free to tell our travel consultants and they'll book the hotel for you.
Have good sleep in our well-selected hotels in all the destinations of China.
We can satisfy all the dietary requirements no matter you want Chinese local food, western food, vegetarian food or muslin food.
The restaurants we will take you for lunch or dinner are all designated tourist restaurants approved by local tourist administration bureau. They have very good sanitary conditions and the food is prepared fresh and clean.
There will be some meals excluded in your itinerary as you like, and your private guide will be delighted to give you some suggestions and take you to the local restaurants to taste like Beijing Roast Duck, Xian Dumpling Dinner, Sichuan Hotpot, etc., if you are interested in local food tasting.
All the dining options will satisfy your stomach!
Beijing / Xian / Guilin / Shanghai
Shanghai / Kunming / Lijiang / Shangri la / Xian / Beijing
Beijing / Guilin / Shanghai / Huangshan / Shanghai