This journey has all of China's top destinations covered, with time to soak up the sights. Whether you are looking for history, character and culture or the modern and marvellous, this itinerary has it all.
Our Grand Tour of China tour will see you exploring the most iconic sites, delving into deep-rooted culture and dining on delicious cuisine.
Take a 4-night voyage on China's most famous river and see the magnificent Three Gorges
Spend time with these furry creatures at the world famous Panda Conservation Centre in Chengdu
Meander amongst the eerie Stone Forest in Kunming
Visit Dali's sentinel Three Pagodas, standing guard at the bottom of the mountain
Our Grand Tour of China Tour has been thoughtfully designed and thoroughly researched to bring you a range of once-in-a-lifetime experiences, many of which are entirely exclusive to us.
Cruise on the waters of Huangpu, the river that bisects Shanghai, the perfect way to appreciate the contrast of the west bank, where you'll find the colonial architecture of The Bund, and the east bank, home to the ultramodern skyscrapers of Pudong.
Long practised in China, many people start their day with a session of Tai Chi - do the same with a morning class with an instructor and continue your day feeling invigorated.
Venture into Beijing's atmospheric old neighbourhoods, the hutongs, exploring the narrow alleyways and visiting the traditional courtyard house of a family, who will give you a glimpse into their daily life.
This tour is suited for customers who have an extensive amount of time to explore China and wish to take in the most famous and iconic sights in depth. This tour also incorporates a Yangtze River cruise and an overnight train journey in China.
Fly to Beijing, China's historical capital. Depending on your time of arrival, the rest of the day is yours to start soaking up the local culture.
Visit Tiananmen Square and discover the sprawling magnificence of the Forbidden City before exploring Beijing's old hutongs where you can meet a local family and visit their home. This evening, eat traditional Peking duck. The next day, spend the morning taking a walk on the Great Wall and in the afternoon, enjoy a stroll through the idyllic gardens of the Summer Palace.
In the morning, soak up the harmonious ambience of the Temple of Heaven, an orderly oasis in a bustling urban landscape and wander through the park, where you can mingle with the locals and watch or participate in tai chi or play cards. Later, take a bullet train to Xian.
Visit the Little Wild Goose Pagoda before wandering around the narrow alleys of the Muslim Quarter. Tonight, feast on traditional Shui Jiao dumplings before a performance of Tang Dynasty dancing. The next day, view the enigmatic ranks of warriors that make up the Terracotta Army of Emperor Qin Shi Huang. Later, stroll on Xian’s beautifully preserved 14th-century city walls.
Fly to Yichang where you will board your Yangtze River cruise vessel.
The Three Gorges Dam may be an impressive feat of engineering but as you cruise upstream nature takes over, revealing some of the world's most dramatic scenery including the Three Gorges themselves. Over the next three days prepare for one breathtaking panorama after another. Take a side trip to the attractive Goddess or Shennong Stream and enjoy various shore excursions.
Disembark in Chongqing then explore old Ciqikou, whose narrow streets are perfect for a stroll to admire the traditional architecture. Transfer to Chengdu where tonight you will be served a traditional Sichuanese dinner with the option to watch a Sichuan Opera performance.
Visit Chengdu’s famous Panda Conservation Centre to see and learn about these celebrated bears up close in surroundings that mirror their natural habitat. Later, fly to the charming city of Dali.
Dali offers a peek of the China of times-gone-by. Over the next two days, travel to Xizhou village to browse around the local market, see the Yan Family House, cruise on Erhai Lake, explore Dali's ancient quarter and visit the Three Pagodas. Transfer to Kunming.
Explore the fascinating limestone formations of the picturesque Stone Forest and tuck in to local delicacy, Across the Bridge Noodles, for dinner tonight.
Fly to the beautiful city of Guilin.
Take a relaxed cruise along the Li River to charming Yangshuo. Around every river bend is a view to take your breath away as jagged karst peaks loom over rural scenes of lush greenery and grazing buffalo.
Begin with a relaxing and invigorating session of tai chi, taking a class with a master to learn this ancient martial art. Explore the countryside and stop on the banks of the Li River for a photo opportunity with a cormorant fisherman. Enjoy time at leisure or choose one of the many optional activities available.
Return to Guilin and visit a pearl factory and Reed Flute Cave. Also stroll around Ronghu Lake and admire the Sun and Moon pagodas – two towering examples of traditional Chinese-Buddhist architecture.
Fly to Hangzhou and visit the Temple of Inspired Seclusion and the tea plantations of Meijiawu. The next day, enjoy a cruise on West Lake and visit Xihu Tiandi before continuing to Suzhou.
Suzhou's centre has managed to retain a sense of quaint charm. Renowned for its elegant gardens, visit one of the finest, the Humble Administrator's Garden – typical of the Chinese appreciation of balance and harmony. Also cruise on the Grand Canal.
Travel to the exuberant and cosmopolitan city of Shanghai, also known as the 'Paris of the East'. Visit Matchmaker's Corner, where parents search for worthy suitors for their children, the Shanghai Museum and People's Square. Later, enjoy a view of the glittering city from the Huangpu River on a panoramic cruise. This evening, dine on a delicious meal of Shanghainese cuisine.
Today’s explorations include the peaceful Yu Garden and a visit to the old town. Admire the magnificent colonial architecture with a stroll along the Bund, before visiting the Silk Factory. End the evening with the fascinating ERA acrobatic show.
Fly to Australia, arriving home the same or following day.
We draw from a wide range of hotels on our holidays, each one is chosen to suit the tour you are travelling on meaning your accommodation can range from a smart business hotel in one city to a family run guesthouse in a smaller town. Here are some examples of the type of hotel you can expect to find on this tour.
The 4-star Mercure Beijing Downtown is very well connected across the city, with easy access to the city centre and multiple transport links. The elegant and spacious guests rooms offer free internet access and satelite TV.
A short distance from Xian's historic old town, the 4-star Lanxi International hotel features a terrace for you to enjoy, as well as an indoor pool and hot tub. The modern guest rooms offer a private bathroom, desk and flat screen TV.
The 4-star Xinliang Hotel is located in the heart of Chengdu, just a short distance from some of the cities key attractions. The hotel's interior was inspired by Bashu culture and blended with a modern charm. Enjoy the recreational facilities available to you, including a sauna and steamroom designed for escapism and relaxation.
JinJiang Hotel is located close to Kunming's main attractions. Each of its air conditioned, modern en-suite rooms include satellite television, a minibar, complimentary toiletries and tea making facilities. The hotel is home to one revolving restaurant as well as 6 dining options and a bar. The onsite fitness centre and spa is a highlight.
Backed by the snow-capped Cangshan Mountain range and facing Erhai Lake, the four-star Asian Star Hotel offers a unique opportunity to appreciate the natural scenery of this area. The hotel offers an onsite restaurant, fitness room and currency exchange facilities. All of the rooms feature air conditioning, a telephone and a view of the mountain or lake.
Located in Guilin’s city center and opposite the attractive Sun and Moon pagodas, the Lijiang Waterfall Hotel offers luxury rooms equipped with a flat screen satellite television, a minibar, a safety deposit box and a stunning en-suite bathroom with complimentary toiletries. The hotel also boasts an outdoor swimming pool and a fitness centre. Guests can enjoy Chinese, Japanese, Korean and Western cuisines in the onsite restaurant.
In the centre of Yangshuo, the 4-star Elite Garden Hotel offers spacious guest rooms designed and decorated to make you feel at home, all equipped with free internet access, complimentary bottled water and a coffee machine. The private bathrooms include both bath and shower facilities.
A short distance from Hangzhou's famous West Lake, Wen Hua Gin Lan Jia Hotel offers beautiful guest rooms with a minibar, tea and coffee making facilities and spacious bathrooms. Some rooms even offer guests stunning views over the river.
In the heart of stunning Suzhou, Wyndham Garden is just steps away from the city's highlights. The spacious guest rooms are modern and fully air conditioned, providing an in-room safe and tea/ coffee making facilities. The hotel also offers a restaurant, outdoor pool and fitness centre.
A short distance from Shanghai's major tourist attractions, the 5-star Jinjiang Huating hotel offers elegant guest rooms with large windows providing views of Shanghai. This beautiful hotel is home to the rooftop Moon View Restaurant, offering breathtaking city views and exquisite Chinese dishes.
Places Visited: Beijing (3N) - Xian (3N) - Yichang - Yangtze River cruise (4N) - Chongqing -Chengdu (1N) - Dali (2N) - Kunming (2N) - Guilin (1N+1N) - Yangshuo (2N) - Suzhou (2N) - Hangzhou (1N) - Shanghai (2N)
All of our tour departures (Excluding Antarctica and Australia tours) include international flights and taxes in the price. If the dates we have available for this tour don't suit your needs, or you are not sure travelling as part of a group is for you, maybe a Private Tour would be more ideal. If your tour departs in less than 30 days, please call our travel experts to book.
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There are no dedicated Solo departures for this year. You can enjoy any of our tours with no Single Supplement on our Happy to Share option or explore the solo departures in other years.