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We spent the last four days in Hing Kong, so just got home last night.
Here are the answers to you questions:
1- We LOVED our tour arrangements! Here are some specific comments:
- Emily was absolutely amazing - a real gem! Not only was she prompt, professional, and on time each day, but she was so friendly to Grant, myself and our kids. She took the time to teach the kids Mandarin phrases and even showed them how to write Chinese characters. By the end of our tour with her we felt like she had been a friend for years. We wish we could have taken her with us on the rest of our trip.
-Our lunch with Emily was also outstanding - she took us to a local restaurant and ordered us several delicious dishes. It was a very memorable experience.
-Surise on the Bund was a beautiful hotel with a delicious breakfast and outstanding amenities (the pool, health club and spa area was top notch). Our only complaint about this hotel was that it was not very close to restaurants. Also, this was the only hotel that did not have hotel rooms on the same floor for us. We spent the first night on separate floors and they promised to move us for night two. However, after our tour day, they tried to tell us that they still did not have two rooms on the same floor for us. After several conversations with the manager, we finally got it sorted and got two rooms on the same floor.
-Overall, we loved our time in Shanghai, mostly because of our great experience with Emily (she really was amazing!!) . We wish we had have had at least one more tour day there.
-Lisa was also prompt, professional and very friendly. She even brought gifts for all of us - so sweet! She was very knowledgeable about the sites we visited.
-The sites we visited in Beijing were amazing and our lunches there were also very good (the one in the Hutong was a great experience!)
-The hotel in Beijing was in a great location. We had no problem finding many good restaurants to eat at within walking distance (and Lisa recommended a very good Beijing Duck restaurant that we loved). Our only complaint about the hotel was that it was a bit old and tired. The pool and health club area could use an upgrade. The breakfast was good, but not as good as the other two hotels.
-Eric was on time and dependable. He was there to meet us off of the train, despite us being delayed by 4 hours! He was knowledgeable and kind, but not quite as friendly with the children as Lisa or Emily. He preferred to talk mostly to my husband.
-Our lunch at the Shangri-la in Shenzhen was amazing!
-The hotel in Shenzhen was also amazing - not only was it in a great location, but the rooms were huge! The facilities were new and the breakfast was very good. This was probably our favorite hotel.
-The transfer from Shenzhen to Hong Kong was smooth and the driver was very professional.
If we come to China again, we will definitely use your company again. And we will recommend China Discovery to others. We also appreciated the prompt and professional communication that we received from you before the trip. It made us feel prepared and ready for our trip. Thank you!
I have attached some pictures here: The first is of my daughter with the ladies doing tai chi in Lychee park (Shenzhen), one of the great wall, one of my husband and daughter at tianamen square, one of the kids at the temple of heaven, and one at the water village in shanghai. Thank you Wing Zeng!
The following pictures were shared by Amy.
My family had a trip to the Great Wall
The Tianmen Square - Largest Square in China
The architecture of the Temple of Heaven is great
Just a small note to thank you and your organisation for a fabulous few days in China.
The two guides you allocated to us were excellent, with special mention on behalf of Kimi, who went out of his way to make sure we were well looked after. He recommended a fabulous restaurant which was a highlight of our holiday, and wrote messages in Chinese so we could safely get a taxi to and from our destination, and his knowledge of the subjects was fabulous, you are lucky to have an employee of his calibre. The hotel in Xian was brilliant, and we made good friends with some of the bar staff there. Thanks again Catherine.
Good morning! Leo,
Happy New Year !
Generally on our whole trip we were blessed with fine weather except on our river cruise to Yangshuo as on that particular morning it was a bit foggy nevertheless it helped us to enjoy the misty landscape and scenery of Guilin.
Our tour guide Alice was super, friendly and knowledgeable.
The van driver was punctual, careful while driving on the road and helpful.
Our only complaint is the New Century Hotel at Yangshou, not new and badly maintained, not recommended for your other guests.
Thanks for making our trip memorable and fun.
Thank you for the greetings. We are slowly getting back to our routines. The followings are some feedbacks on the tours, with positive and negative comments. The followings are some feedbacks on the tours, with positive and negative comments.
First of all, I would like to commend on the tour guides. Nancy was our guide in Chengdu who we had spent 5 days together. She had shown herself with lots of enthusiasm and would work her best to ensure my family was happy with the scheduled activities. She would try to negotiate with the driver for a closer drop off/pick up spot for us, and would remind us to bring enough and suitable clothing for a particular day. She had also made the tour a lot more interesting by telling us many stories and background of China and the sightseeing places.
The tour guide Waldner in Xian was also exceptional. He could speak excellent English, had a sense of humour and also very knowledgeable. He kept us entertained and was able to engage my boys into conversation and hence made the touring a fun, relaxed and pleasant one.
On a negative note, the first impression on the pick-up vehicle upon arrival in Chengdu was very below expectation, with the upholstery very old in particular. We did not expect a privately hired vehicle to be in that condition. However, after reflecting our concern to Nancy, the tour agent arranged another vehicle on the following morning. We appreciated the effort for Nancy and travel agent for attending our concerns on a very timely manner.
On the other hand, the drivers and vehicles in Xian were both excellent, with the vehicle on the last two days the best - it was clean, new and modern. Both the drivers in Xian would get off their seat to greet us and make sure we got in and off of the car safely. Little gesture showed caring, appreciated.
The day at Dujiangyan Panda Base was my children's most looking forward part of the trip. However, upon arrival at the registration office, my husband and I were shocked to hear the staff said they did not have our advance booking. We could understand some Chinese and heard them complaining that it was not the first time "this travel agent does that (no booking)". My husband and I felt very worried at that moment, thinking we might be unable to participate in the volunteering. They allowed us in at last, but China Discovery, please ensure you do pre-book everything for your clients according to the itinerary to avoid disappointment especially during peak seasons!
The day at Dujiangyan Panda Base was a highlight. First time paying to do cleaning work but it was a very fun and memorable day. Never seen my children doing chores so happily! It was interesting to see the quantity of bamboo a panda could munch on and, pooping it could do in a day (but don't worry, they weren't smelly at all!). We were able to hear stories and get up close to three pandas around our volunteering work area and one of the pandas was surprisingly very active on the morning we went. My boys' photo shooting session with a young panda was a lifetime experience. They said it was their most precious 20 seconds of their life! It was indeed a very special day!
The tour in Chengdu had took us to Dujiangyan Irrigation System, Qingcheng Mountain, Leshan Buddha, Mount Emei and Chengdu Panda Base. Mount Emei was another most worth visit place in our trip. Most people came for the temples but we came for the scenery. The place was covered with snow and it was picturesque! Some steps were icy and slippery so we had to walk cautiously but as it was a private tour, we could enjoy at our own pace and it was a very pleasant day!
We visited Terracotta Warriors, Mount Hushan, Bell Tower, Ancient City Wall and Giant Wild Goose Pagoda, etc. during our Xian leg of the trip. We were spellbound by Emperor Qin's Terracotta army, but the most enjoyable day among all sightseeing places in Xian was the excursion to Mount Hushan. The place was just breathtaking with steep cliffs and endless up and down winding paths to different peaks. The cable car journey was an amazing experience too. We were glad to have a tour guide coming along, so we could hike around and see the best of the mountain at ease.
Overall, we were very happy with the tour arrangement and we had a lovely trip. From the first time that I contacted China Discovery, the consultant Wing was very responsive and always attended to my endless questions promptly. Wing worked back to forth with me on many emails until I was happy with all the schedules and hotels, etc.. The tours ran smoothly and they delivered everything detailed in the itinerary. The only drawback was we were not very used to the cuisines both in Sichuan and Shaanxi provinces - they were either spicy or in a strong favour and very oily to our liking. The tour guides had nevertheless expressed our concerns to the restaurant chefs, though it was not easy to change their way of cooking (which we understand). With door-to-door vehicle pick up and a local tour guide there with us, we felt safe touring around in a foreign country. If my family ever visit China in the future, we would definitely book through China Discovery again and would recommend others too.
Apart from touring, my family would like to express our gratitude to China Discovery for their prompt assistance to locate my son's lost mobile phone. My son realised that he might have left his phone behind in the pick-up vehicle after going through custom at Chengdu airport enroute to Xian. I frantically called Wing at China Discovery, telling her the situation. I made another call to Wing half an hour later, and to our relief, she had already located the phone and would arrange it to be mailed to our hotel in Xian. We were happy to see the parcel arrived safely 2 days later. The service of China Discovery and Wing's willingness to attend to customers' problems when in need impressed us and had exceeded our expectation! Thank you!
Wing, sorry that I don't feel comfortable to share photos of my family on your public website. However, since I posted some travel photos in my facebook (social media account with people I know), I was already asked by a few friends regarding my itinerary and your travel agent details. I would be more than happy to recommend your company to my friends when asked.
Once again we would like to thank you and and the whole team: our tour guides - Kevin, Jenny, Johnny, Celina and Candy - and all the drivers for arranging such a wonderful trip to China. Everything went very well and we had a great time. We felt very well cared for by all of your staff. The tour was very interesting and unforgettable. We wish we could stay longer.
We wish everybody good luck and all the best,
Elmira and Nick
Please see the below:
Communication was excellent from the very start of planning the itinerary to the end of the tour. Email communication was very quick and easy to get an accurate response to my questions.
All guides and drivers were excellent. All guides met were waiting for us at the airport and train stations, to pick us up to go back to the hotel, or straight to see the sites. Tour guides were flexible and understanding.
I would definitely recommend this company to family and friends looking for a pampered relaxing holiday whilst still being able to see, learn and experience the local culture.
It was awesome experience with you and your team. We were helped by your team all through so nicely. It really made our journey very enjoyable. I would be happy to rate you and your company on trip adviser. You certainly can send me the link. However, I will do that once I return to USA almost 3 weeks later. I hope that will be fine with you.
Happy New Year to you as well.
Our entire trip to Chengdu, Chongqing and the 4-day cruise through the 3-Gorges was very well planned and coordinated. Your tour guides were all very knowledgeable and tentative, and I greatly appreciate the fact that I was always able to reach you whenever there was a problem. even your tour guide in Yichang was very patient and pleasant, and was a big help when we were checking in at the Yichang airport, and there was a problem with our identity card at the airline counter. Please thank both Sophia and the Yichang tour guide for us.
The 3-Gorges cruise was enjoyable. The food was mediocre (and could definitely use some improvement). the highlight was the boat ride through the canyons on the 3rd day, which seemed like to ride back to a timeless nature.
I am very impressed with the service of your agency, and will definitely recommend you to TripAdviser and to my frineds.
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