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6 Days Beijing Datong Essence Tour

Grand Word Heritage Sites Trip

1

Beijing and Datong are two famed historic cities featuring in lots of past glories. This 6 Days tour takes you to visit the essence of these two cities, especially the grand UNESOCO-recognized World Heritage sites, such as eminent Forbidden City, featured Temple of Heaven, elegant Summer Palace, Great Wall and sublime Yungang Grottoes, by visiting which you will get the best highlights of ancient imperial culture in Beijing and brilliant Buddhist arts created thousand years ago. Why still hesitate? The rich seams of breathtaking antiquity awaits.

Highlights of this tour

  • Not only visit unmissable collection of imperial architectures of Forbidden City, but also appreciate a bird's-eye vista of the whole palace from Jingshan Park;
  • Hike along the man-made wonder – Mutianyu Great Wall which is renowned for its Ming Dynasty watchtowers and stirring views;
  • Appreciate over 50,000 various shapes of Buddhist statues in Yungang Grottoes that is a highlighting masterpiece of Chinese Buddhist history and art.

Basic Trip Information

Price:
from
  1. 1. This price is for one person, based on a group of 2 adults sharing one double-bed room in a 4-star hotel and traveling in low seasons;
  2. 2. This price is subject to change according to your traveling season, group size, hotel class, change of activities and possible fluctuation of currency exchange rate.
Travel Route:
Beijing / Datong
Travel Length:
6 Days and 5 Nights
Tour Code:
CD-BDET-06
Group Size:
You, your family, friends or group
Experience:
ArchitectureCulturePhotographReligious
Departure:
Any day you want

Full Itinerary Day by day

Day 1 Beijing Arrival

Ni Hao, welcome to Beijing, the iconic city as well as the capital of China!

You will be met by your local tour guide at the arrival hall of Beijing Capital Airport, or railway station, then be 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.

Arrival Ideas: At present, there are many international and domestic flights to Beijing. Besides, you can take a high speed train to this capital city from Shanghai (5-6 hrs), Xian (5.5 hrs), Guangzhou (8-9.5 hrs), etc.

Modern Face of Beijing
Day 2 Beijing (B, L)

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 - 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. After Forbidden City exploration, take a short visit to Jingshan Park where you can get a nice shot of one watchtower of Forbidden City and take a panoramic view of Forbidden City.

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.

Optional activities: 1) You can watch a wonderful Kungfu Show in the Red Theater (Hong Ju Chang) which usually starts at 19:30; 2) Enjoy the classic Chinese art performance of Beijing Opera at Liyuan Theater during 19:30-21:00.

Beijing Fobidden City from Jingshan Park Summer Palace
Day 3 Beijing (B, L)

After breakfast, drive about 70km to witness one of the Seven Wonders of the World - the Great Wall. 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 will 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.)

Continue your trip to Sacred Way, a 7-kilometer-long passage leading to the Imperial Tombs of 13 Emperors of Ming Dynasty. The Emperor, known as the Son of the Heaven, who came from Heaven to his country through the Sacred Way, also would return to Heaven through this road. Take a walk through the largest archway in China and Great Palace Gate and you’ll see the magnificent stone guard of 12 sets of mythical animals and 12 officials. Then drive back to Beijing city and take a short stop at the Beijing Olympic Village to view its famous Bird’s Nest and Water Cube from the outside.

Optional activity: 1) Enjoy an exciting and safe toboggan ride (about 2~3mins) down Mutianyu Great Wall; 2) After the whole day's tour, treat yourself a great dinner to taste the famous Peking Roasted Duck.

Misty Mutianyu Great Wall Bird's Nest Sacred Way
Day 4 Beijing - High Speed Train to Datong (B, L)

After breakfast, drive to the imperial site of the Temple of Heaven. Originally a site used to pay homage to Heaven and pray for good harvests, it is now a bustling place where locals take part in traditional activities such as Tai Chi, dancing, kite flying, water calligraphy, and others.

Then get back to the central city to hop on a rickshaw to experience the Beijing Hutongs - small alleys made by neighboring quadrangle dwellings. Shuttle among different Hutongs to get a feel of the old Beijing lifestyle, visit various antique shops and small boutiques, truly feel the historical changes of Beijing, and also pay a visit to a local family's home in the traditional Hutongs.

Tour ends. Your tour guide will transfer you to the train station to take a high speed bullet to Datong (about 2-2.5 hours). After arrival, be picked by tour guide and then go to check in hotel in downtown.

Local Life in Hutong Fantastic View in Temple of Heaven
Day 5 Datong (B, L)

After breakfast, you will drive about 50 minutes (23 kilometers) to Yungang Grottoes, a World Heritage site dating back to 5th century. Containing 254 Buddhist caves, Yungang Grottoes stretches about 1 km long. It is filled with about 5,100 precious sculptures - the height of the largest Buddha statue reaches 17 meters and the smallest is only 2 centimeters tall. Most of the sculptures are Buddhas, from which you can be awestruck at their life-like features and blissful smiles. You won't miss Cave No.5 and Cave No. 6 - the highlights of Yungang Grottoes with the entire interiors carved and colored. Facing these jaw-dropping celestial beings in different shapes, you can imagine the painstaking effort taken to produce them.

In the afternoon, drive back to Datong city to visit Nine Dragon Screen Wall, made of colorful glazed tiles and depicting nine dragons. It once served as a temple's spirit wall placed in an entrance to inhibit the evil spirit's coming. Now it is the biggest and oldest glazed dragon wall in China. Next, you will visit Huayan Temple - the largest and best preserved monastery built by Khitan during Liao Dynasty. Unlike most traditional Chinese buildings, it interestingly faces east not south, because the Khitan were also sun worshipers. Indulge yourself in the palatial buildings, exquisite frescoes, valued inscriptions in the temple.

Next, drive about 40 minutes (30 kilometers) to Datong Earth Forest to see the unique landscape made by hundreds of earth columns and earth walls. When the sun sets down, the glow will color the earth into golden and Earth Forest will present its most beautiful appearance.

Turn back to Datong for accommodation.

Our Clients at Yungang Grottoes Nine Dragon Screen Wall
Day 6 Datong Departure (B, L)

After breakfast, you will move to Hanging Temple, after 1.5 hours' driving (80 km). Built in 491 during Northern Wei Dynasty, it enjoys a history of over 1,500 years. Miraculously carved into the sheer cliff of Hengshan Mountain, Hanging Temple is one of the most incredible sights in China. Its 40 perilous halls and pavilions lean straight over the canyon. Seeing it from the ground, travelers can't help admiring at the ancient people's wisdom. Moreover, Hanging Temple is featured as the only existing temple with the combination of Buddhism, Taoism and Confucianism. So various sculptures are enshrined in the temple. You have enough time to unlock the mystery of why this unusual temple could stand in the precarious position and explore China's religious culture.

After the exciting experience in Hanging Temple, drive 1 hour to Fogong Temple. The highlight of Fogong Temple is Yingxian Wooden Pagoda - the oldest and tallest wooden multi-storey structure in the world. Built in 1056 during Liao Dynasty (907 ~ 1125) and standing at 67.31 meters high, it shocks travelers most that the whole structure was made without any nails, screws, or bolts. There are lots of elegant Buddha statues and Bodhisattva statues to worship. Among them, an 11m high Sakyamuni statue is sitting solemnly in the pagoda on the first floor, it is the grandest one, and fortunately, it is accessible to the visitors. (The others are on the other floors, which are not open to public for a better preservation of the pagoda.)

After the sightseeing, you will be transferred to the airport or train station to catch your flight or train to your next destination. Service ends.

Optional Activity: Apart from the amazing building techniques, Fogong Temple is of great importance to Buddhists as there preserves two tooth relics of Sakyamuni, which is very rare and valuable. If you are interested, it is available to pay extra CNY100 for a respectful glance at them.

Great View of Hanging Temple Yingxian Wooden Pagoda -  Tallest Wooden Multi-storey Structure

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