Stepping back into Imperial China! The northern China cities Beijing, Xian, Pingyao and Luoyang keep the essence of ancient China culture and history. You will take the modern and fast high speed trains to circle around these legendary cities. Start your trip from Beijing, the city of 7 World Heritage Sites. After visiting the world-famous Great Wall, Forbidden City and other highlights, take a bullet train to Pingyao, the best-preserved walled ancient city which used to be a financial center for ancient China and has been called “The Wall Street of the East”. After that, you will get to Xian, the greatest ancient capital of China where you will spend one and a half day exploring the magnificent Terracotta Warriors and other famous sites. After Xian is Luoyang, another ancient capital of China. The city is famous for Longmen Grottoes, known as one of the finest examples of Chinese Buddhist art. Driving not so far from Luoyang, you will get to Shaolin Temple, the holy shrine of Chinese Buddhism as well as the place where Chinese Kung Fu originated. Lastly, take a flight to Shanghai to finish your exciting trip.
Day 1 Beijing ArrivalAirport or railway station pick up and check in hotel
Welcome to Beijing, the capital of China, rich in history and culture.
Your lifetime China tour begins with welcome from your local guide at the Beijing airport. Then be escorted to your hotel in a private vehicle. The rest of today is yours to acclimatize or explore the vast metropolis on your own.
- Modern Face of Beijing
Day 2 Beijing (B, L)Today's highlights: Tian'anmen Square, Forbidden City, Hutong Rickshaw, Summer Palace
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.
- Magnificent Tiananmen Square in Beijing
- Summer Palace
Day 3 Beijing (B, L)Today's highlights: Mutianyu Great Wall, Temple of Heaven, Bird’s Nest and Water Cube
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.
- Temple of Heaven
- The Great Wall Family
Day 4 Beijing - High Speed Train to Pingyao (B, L)Today's highlights: Pingyao Ancient City Wall, Rishengchang Former Bank, Shuanglin Monastery
This morning, you will go to take the earliest high speed train (around 8am) to Pingyao, the best preserved ancient city in China. You will arrive at Pingyao after about 4 hours bullet train ride, then be picked up by local tour guide and start to explore Pingyao Ancient City. With a history over 2700 years, Pingyao still keeps its intact charm: ancient city walls, elegant courtyards, scattered temples, all marked the splendid period during Ming and Qing dynasties. AS one of the bestl-preserved ancient cities in China, it is also a UNESCO World Cultural Heritage Site listed in 1997.
Your Pingyao Ancient City 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. After that, stroll on the traditional Ming and Qing Street, a cobbled road with old buildings on either side. You may like tracing back to the former bustle bazaar in the old days. The last travel destination today is Shuanglin Monastery, where contents a large amount of clay figures and wooden sculptures of various gods, goddesses and saints. You will be impressed by the traditional Chinese art forms.
Accommodate at Pingyao City.
- Old Streets of Pingyao Ancient City
- Pingyao Ancient City Wall
- Shuanglin Temple
Day 5 Pingyao - Xian by High Speed Train (B, L)Today's highlights: Wang’s Family Compound, Zhangbi Ancient Castle
Today, you will firstly head to Wang’s Family Compound, the complex for another rich family in Shanxi Province, near Pingyao. You will see the traditional layout and wooden construction and explore how the rich family lived in the ancient times. Then go to visit the Zhangbi Ancient Castle, a series of tunnels dug to hide out in times of war in over 1380 years ago, to explore how the architecture mixed with engineering in ancient time.
After visiting, transfer to Pingyao Ancient Train Station for your high speed train to Xian (less than 3 hours). Upon arrival in Xian, the local guide and driver will meet you at the train station and take you to your hotel. Have a good rest today.
- Zhangbi Ancient Castle
- Wang's Family Compound
Day 6 Xian (B, L)Today's highlights: Terracotta Warriors and Horses, Ancient City Wall, Muslim Community
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.
- Amazing Terracotta Warriors with 2000 Years History
- Tradtional architecture on the Ancient City Wall
- Visit Muslim Quarter to Enjoy Some Snacks
Day 7 Xian & High Speed Train to Luoyang (B, L)Today's highlights: Big Wild Goose Pagoda, Shaanxi History Museum
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). (Note: Shaanxi History Museum may be replaced with other activity or attraction because of crowding tourists during July ~ early September and China’s National Day during Oct.1-Oct.7. You may check details with your travel consultant.)
After the tour, be escorted to Xian North Train Station and take a high speed train to Luoyang (about1.5 hours).
- Big Wood Goose Pagoda
- Shaanxi History Museum
Day 8 Luoyang (B, L)Today's highlights: Longmen Grottoes, Luoyang Museum, Tianzi Jialiu Museum
After breakfast, your guide will take you to visit Longmen Grottoes, which contains the largest and most impressive collection of Chinese art of the late Northern Wei and Tang Dynasties (316-907). The UNESCO World Heritage site is densely scattered on the cliffs of Mount Longmen (West Hill) and Mount Xiangshan (East Mountain) – on two banks of Yi River. West Hill houses the major caves with notable displays of Buddhist sculptures and calligraphic inscriptions. You won’t miss Bingyang Cave which tells a wealth of history and artistic value, including Guyang Vave with over 1,000 Buddha statues and 800 calligraphy inscriptions, and Fengxian Temple – the largest cave with a 17.14-meter-tall sculpture of Vairocana Buddha.
After the great sightseeing in Longmen Grottoes, drive to Luoyang Museum which shows ancient Luoyang from all perspectives. There are more than 1,000 exhibits dating back to the Tang Dynasty (A.D. 618 ~ 907) and even to the earliest prehistoric times (before the 21st century B.C.) in the informative display halls, such as exquisite tri-colored glazed potteries, various bronzeware, ancient clay sculpture, treasured calligraphy and paintings, etc.
Then head to the center of Luoyang to visit Tianzi Jialiu Museum. The burial of the royal horses and chariots that were sacrificed during Eastern Zhou Dynasty is earlier than that of Terracotta Warriors in Xian. Lastly, go to take a leisure walk on the ancient streets of Luoyang Old City. It is a lively place with many old residential buildings, food streets, and delicate shops. Just freely appreciate the splendor of old Luoyang, taste some local snacks or purchase some interesting souvenirs freely.
After the trip, drive back to your hotel.
- Our customer from Italy visit Longmen Grottoes
- Longmen Grottoes Scenery from Opposite Riverside
- Exquisite tri-colored glazed potteries in Luoyang Museum
Day 9 Luoyang - Shaolin Temple - Shanghai (B, L)Today's highlights: Shaolin Temple, Shaolin Kung Fu Show
After breakfast, start today's trip the dream land for Kung Fu fans and Buddhist pilgrims - Shaolin Temple which is only about 55km/1.5hrs' drive from Luoyang downtown. Shaolin Temple is known as the birthplace of Zen Buddhism and the cradle of Kung Fu. You will visit the grandiose temples and halls, admire stone carving art, learn about Buddhism culture, observe the daily living and meditation of monks in the temple. Don't miss the famous Pagoda Forest, the existing largest pagoda forest in China. When an important monk passed away, their cremains or skeleton would be put into the underground palace, and a pagoda will be built on it. The pagoda's height, size and number of layers will be decided according to the monk's Buddhism knowledge, reputation and merits and virtues when during his lifetime. The pagodas here were built in different dynasties, including 2 Tang Dynasty pagodas, 2 Song Dynasty Pagodas, 10 Jin Dynasty pagodas, 46 Yuan Dynasty pagodas, 148 Ming Dynasty pagodas, etc.
Then continue your visit to enjoy a magnificent free Kung Fu Performance performed by Shaolin Warriors Monks in the Shaolin Wushu Hall, lasting for half hour each day. Shaolin Kungfu was first created by Bodhidharma to exercise his body when he faced the wall and meditated. After that, in Tang Dynasty, most monks in Shaolin Temple would practice Shaolin Kungfu, and this phenomenon reached to its peak in Ming Dynasty, and the Shaolin Kungfu was spread to the outer world after that.
After that, drive about 88km to Zhengzhou to catch your flight to Shanghai (about 2hrs), the most flourishing metropolis in China. Upon arrival, you will be welcomed by local tour guide, then transferred to your hotel in Shanghai downtown.
- Archway gate of Shaolin Temple
- Our dear guest Roger visited Pagoda Forest of Shaolin Temple
- Shaolin Kung Fu Show in Shaolin Temple
Day 10 Shanghai (B, L)Today's highlights: Shanghai Museum, Yu Garden, Shanghai World Financial Center, the Bund
You will take a full day of sightseeing to explore both the past and present of Shanghai. Your first stop is Shanghai Museum, one of the Best Four Museums in China. This modern museum, with a round top and a square base which symbolizing the ancient Chinese perception of the world as "round sky, square earth", has collected many international-standard exhibits of bronzes, paintings, calligraphy, sculpture, ceramics, jade from more than 5,000 years ago to the Qing dynasty. To help you learn about the history and facts about the relics in the museum easily, an Audio Explanation Device will be prepared for you. Then you will take an interesting visit to Yu Garden, a shining star among all the ancient Chinese gardens in Jiangnan. This garden fully embodies the traditional design of Chinese architecture with jagged pavilions with elegant decorations, glittering pools with roving fish, and pine trees sprouting to the sky, all designed to refresh your mood and spirit. Adjacent to the garden is the Yuyuan Bazaar where you can savor tasteful local snacks and explore elaborate traditional Chinese handicrafts and art works. Next, you will drive several kilometers to enjoy a panoramic view of the modern face of Shanghai from the 100th floor (474m) of “the Eye of Shanghai” Shanghai World Financial Center.
You will then be transferred to another popular landmark of Shanghai, Nanjing Road, a shopping paradise as well as a great place to take a wonderful walk to experience the modern atmosphere of the City. Lastly, you will stop at the Bund, originally a simple towpath for transporting goods but now transformed into a feverish trading district. You will stroll along the Bund, seeing and feeling the perfect fusion of Chinese and Western cultures while at the same time taking in the stunning Shanghai skyline with your own eyes!
Optional activities: 1) Attend an entertaining Acrobatic Show, including breathtaking “balls of death” acts, chair balancing, hula hoops, juggling of benches, walking in the air, and other breathtaking performances (usually performed during 19:30~21:00); 2) Take a relaxing Huangpu River night cruise to see the city’s most significant edifices and streets sparkling under the atmospheric cover of darkness (about 50 minutes).
- Tourists Took Photo at The Bund with Backdrop of Lujiazui
- Ancient Architectures in Shanghai Yu Garden
- 474 M High Glass Walkway in World Financial Center
Day 11 Shanghai Departure (B)Today's highlights: Zhujiajiao Water Town
After breakfast, about 1 hour's drive will take you away from the city's hustle and bustle to visit Zhujiajiao Ancient Town which is known as the Venice of Shanghai
Zhujiajiao has a history of 1,700 years and is a well-preserved waterside ancient town. You will stroll along Hundred-year-old North Street, take some awesome pictures on the Fangsheng Bridge, have a panoramic view of Zhujiajiao by climbing up to Yuanjin Buddhist Temple, enjoy some leisure time on the traditionally decorated boat, cruise along the canals and see the old residences, shops and bridges which are filled with classic architectural style in Ming and Qing Dynasties (1368 AD - 1911 AD).
After the water town tour, your guide and driver will escort you to the airport, railway station or port to catch your flight/train/ship to your next destination or home. Tour ends.
- Take a Boat Trip in Zhujiajiao Water Town
Suzhou of over 2,500 years old is abundant with ancient culture and history of Wu State in ancient times.
City like Suzhou which gathers its best highlighting attractions together in the historical old city area is ideal for taking a day trip. This tour brings you the best features of Suzhou in a brief day tour - Appreciate the beautiful Lingering Garden, one of the four most famous classic gardens of China; Spend some leisure time on the Shantang Street to experience the very history and local life of Suzhou; Explore the most historical site in Suzhou – Tiger Hill; Have fun to see see how the exquisite silk garment is produced at No.1 Silk Factory.
Guilin, the darling of tourists!
Guilin is famous for having the best landscape under Heaven which can be seen in three most popular places - Guilin, Yangshuo and Longsheng. Only 3 days are needed to get them all in a single trip. You will visit the essential sites in the city, enjoy a relaxing cruise along Li River, and have a pleasant time of countryside exploration in Yangshuo Town. Another highlight is the unique trip to Longji Terrace which is an ideal place for experiencing ethnic culture, hiking and photography.
1. This price is for one person, based on a group of 2 adults sharing one standard double-bed room in a 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, 2022.
4. Reference exchange rate of USD 1= RMB 6.65. 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.
Sorry for the slow reply. The cruise was really good; considering how few foreign passengers were on board the staff really went out of their way to look after us.
Thanks Leo for organising this trip. We had good time;
Huangshan: we loved the place but felt sad that this was not the right season for it.. So while booking you can just inform us on the same.. I had checked the weather before going, I knew it was raining but I thought it like shenyang rain.. Light.. Not that heavy.. So if possible just give an info on that to people..
Driver and vehicle: good
Guide: very good
Hangzhou: good place.
Driver: very rude. Not even accommodating a small requirement of stopping at a supermarket.
Shanghai and around: good
Driver: Kind and helpful.
Guide: very friendly, helpful and good.. Appreciate that she helped us for booking food online..
Guides were supportive at all places.. Thank you!! But again a feedback for your company: Try being little flexible when you are doing a customized trip. Customized trip is not just booking hotels or car. Clients need more flexibility in terms of everything when we know we are paying more than just for the trip expense
The tour was wonderful and Shirley a great guide. We enjoyed it a lot.
Thanks a lot for the organization.
Hi Wonder, back to Shanghai, it was an amazing trip, and the driver is just a great guy who really help us from the beginning to the end. Thank you for everything.
Here is my review about the trip to Guilin, it’s just our point of view so there is nothing bad about what I will say.
At first we had an amazing driver, friendly and always helping us for everything, and very good and safe drive.
Day one was great, not really a lot of things to see or do in Huangluo Yao village, but it’s ok, by the way the restaurant the driver bring us there was very great, best Chinese food we had in China. Ping’an Village is just wonderful, walking in the middle of the rice terrace with an amazing view was perfect. The hotel was nice too (sorry to disturb you this day, but after I realize the woman playing with a kid on the terrace was working for the hotel, at the beginning I thought she was a client), by the way, it was great, she really took care of us, and again excellent food, the view from the room is great too.
Day two was great too, thousand layer terraces is a place to see, and the cable car is very useful, Ping An is better cause we really are in the middle of the rice terrace with all the farmer around, it’s really local, 1000 terrace is more for the view and we really enjoyed it.
Visit of the Tea farmer was interesting.
Then back in Guilin, we went to the city to the pedestrian street near a lake with two beautiful towers, and also went to a park near a hill. Guilin is a nice city but it stays a city, the hotel was great too, but all was a little bit too much “metropole”. I think it should be better to stay in a more local place like small village close from Mopanshan. Nothing bad about this Wonder, but we come from Shanghai who is a big city, and when we go out from a city it’s nice to be in the country side. The hotel was perfect too, but it’s the kind of hotel I go during some business trips, by the way we know Guilin now.
Day 3 was very very very great, the cruise is amazing, the bamboo boat very great too and the country side of Yangshuo is just wow, so beautiful, we have rented a motorbike from the hotel and wend around in the afternoon, just beautiful, we really enjoyed. The hotel was perfect too, all the staff speak English and are very friendly. In the restaurant, Chinese and Western food was nice too, in the evening we went to see a show in Yangshuo, they knew we should come back late and they manage everything so serve us after 10pm. Very great hotel with a so beautiful view. This is the point, at the hotel at Ping An village or Yangshuo, in the evening we can enjoy the view from outside on the balcony of the room, drinking a glass and smoke a cigarette, it’s just empty out mind and we really enjoy this moment, thing we cannot do in Guilin for example.
Day 4, back to Guilin and go to Elephant Hill, it’s just a park like the 100 parks we have in Shanghai, nothing special to see, especially after seeing the rice terraces around Ping An and the beautiful landscape from Li River and Yangshuo. Reed Flute cave was just wow too, so so beautiful, that was the first time in my life I saw a so beautiful cave, really love it.
This trip was the best one we did in China, we both love it, just wish to have one more day in Yangshuo. If I need to give a note I will give 9/10, Thank for your great work.
Thanks for all your help Jack, we really enjoyed our trip! Would definitely recommend to friends in the future, our driver was excellent.
"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!
Below are some important things to know regarding of train travel tips, traveling documents, hotels and food, weather, booking guide. Traveling with China Discovery, you only need to focus on enjoying your holiday time. We will take care of all the details. Our travel consultants are always ready to help you if you have any questions about the trip.
Datong / Wutaishan / Taiyuan / Pingyao
Beijing / Datong / Wutaishan / Pingyao
Beijing / Datong / Pingyao / Xian / Shanghai
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