Oct 16, 2017: Leave the US for China.
Oct 17: Arrive Beijing (D): Arrive Beijing, meet and transfer to the Penta Hotel (4 star, centrally located) or similar.
Oct 18: Beijing (B, L, D) Full day tour including visit to the Tian'anmen Square, Forbidden City and Summer Palace. Enjoy a full day exploring Beijing and the surrounding area. Walk into Tian'anmen Square and imagine the great historic events of the 20th century that took place here. The memory of Mao Tse-Tung dominates the square as his portrait hangs above the "Gate of Heavenly Peace". Behind the walls, the Forbidden City Looms. Step inside and tour the palace where China's 24 emperors ruled the country for more than 600 years. The Forbidden City is an architectural masterpiece, the largest existing ancient architectural group in the world that houses an enormous collection of precious cultural relics and art objects including jewels, antiques and paintings. This afternoon, drive outside the city to the fabled Summer Palace, resort of the Empress Dowager, and the largest imperial garden in the world. It is a veritable museum of classical Chinese garden architecture. In the evening, enjoy a welcome dinner of famous Beijing Roast Duck.
Oct 19: Beijing (B, L) Full day excursion to the Great Wall and Changling Tomb. A thrilling day! Visit the extraordinary 2000 year old Great Wall of China, one of the most spectacular structures ever built by man. The Great Wall snakes its way from east to west for nearly 4000 miles. The Great Wall was built and rebuilt by a succession of Chinese emperors to keep out the marauding hordes of nomads from the north. This afternoon, you will continue to visit the Changling Tomb, one of the 13 Tombs of the Ming Dynasty.
Oct 20: Beijing (B, L) Continue to explore Beijing with the Temple of Heaven and Hu Tong tour with lunch. Built in the Ming and Qing dynasties, the Temple of Heaven was the center of prayer, traditional ceremonies and sacrificial rites. Also, we will have lunch with a local family in their home setting for a unique, cultural experience. This evening, enjoys a fantastic performance of Kung Fu, also called Legend of Kungfu, is about the traditional martial art of China. The Legend of Kung Fu follows the story of a young boy found wandering outside an ancient temple. Like every boy in China, he dreams of becoming a Kung Fu master. On the road to enlightenment the young monk encounters many difficulties and temptations. The show has English subtitles shown above the stage to keep you informed of the story line. The actors do not speak, the show is all Kung Fu, dance and acrobatics. It is the fusion of modern dance with Chinese traditional arts, which make this performance unique and spectacular.
Oct 21: Beijing/Shanghai (B, D). Transfer to airport for flight Beijing/Shanghai, upon arrival, meet and transfer to the Crown Plaza Hotel (4 star, centrally located) or similar. The rest of the day at leisure on your own.
OPTIONAL DAY TOUR TO XIAN ($375) Beijing/Xi'an/Shanghai (B). Transfer to Beijing Capital Airport for early morning flight Beijing/Xi'an, upon arrival, meet and transfer to the city, tour of Terra Cotta Warriors Museum, lunch at local restaurant. After completion of tour, transfer to airport for flight Xi'an/Shanghai, upon arrival, meet and transfer to your hotel in Shanghai to join the main group. Terra Cotta Warriors Museum: One of the most incredible sights in the world, the 'Teracotta Warriors'. In 1974, while digging a well, a farmer stumbled upon the third century B.C. burial grounds of Emperor Qin Shi Huangdi. An archaeological dig has uncovered an army of more than 8,000 life-sized terracotta statues, each with distinctive physical features. These soldiers have been guarding their emperor's tomb, under-ground for over 2,000 years!
Oct 22: Shanghai (B, L) Full day tour including visit to the Bund, Yu Garden, Shanghai Museum and Xintiandi area. Explore the Shanghai Bund, which has dozens of historical buildings from the 1920s and 1930s. The Bund is adjacent to the Huangpu River. The buildings once housed numerous banks and trading houses from all over the world. The Bund lies north of the old, walled city and was initially a British settlement. Continue to the Yu Yuan Gardens, which typify the traditional Chinese sense of beauty and symbolism. The gardens were created in the 16th century by a young Ming official in an attempt to please his father. Only five acres in size, it is a miniature wild landscape of unusual rocks, still pools, streams, pavilions, and winding footpaths. Visit the Shanghai Museum, famous for its ancient Chinese art as well as collections of bronze, ceramics, painting and calligraphy. The Museum's collection is displayed over five floors, covering a total area of over 420,000 sq. ft. The building itself is designed in the shape of an ancient bronze cooking vessel called a ding. The building has a round top and a square base, symbolizing the ancient Chinese perception of the world as "round sky, square earth". At last, visit the Xintiandi district. As a car-free shopping, eating and entertainment area of Shanghai, Xintiandi is composed of an area of restored traditional shikumen ("stone gate") houses on narrow alleys, a modern shopping mall with a cinema complex, and some adjoining houses which now serve as book stores, cafes and restaurants.
Oct 23: Shanghai (B, D) Day free at leisure on your own to further explore the city or do last minute shopping, or join our optional tour to Suzhou. Optional Full day excursion to Suzhou, a water town, also called the Venice of the East. It is famous for its gardens of traditional Chinese design, and is a living museum for Chinese gardens. Travel via the Shanghai- Suzhou express way to the tranquil garden city of Suzhou. Founded over 2,500 years ago, Suzhou's charms are embodied in its formal gardens, each exquisitely designed and constructed by great artists of late Imperial China. There are more than 150 exquisite gardens in Suzhou, each combining the traditional elements of pavilions, temples and rock sculptures with distinctive arrangements of flowers and trees. Visit the Humble Administration Garden, Master of Fishnet Garden, enjoy a short cruise on the canal. Enjoy lunch at a local restaurant. This afternoon visit a silk factory where you can learn about the process of producing silk (from cocoon to spinning the silk to the final product). Cost: $145pp (operate minimum 6 pax). This evening, enjoy a Shanghai local flavor cuisine and dinner at a local restaurant.
Oct 24: Depart Shanghai (B) Departure transfer to airport for your return flight home or extension to Hong Kong.
3 NIGHTS HONG KONG EXTENTION at the Marriott Courtyard Shatin 4* Hotel or similar. COST $645 per person. Single Supplement $345.
Oct 24: Depart Shanghai/arrive Hong Kong (B) Meet with your guide and transfer on a private bus from the airport to Hong Kong Island. We will pass through the 'Lion Rock' Tunnel, which connects New Territories to the Kowloon Peninsula. We'll continue through the city and go through another 'Cross-Harbour Tunnel' under water to arrive Hong Kong Island. This is the busiest tunnel in Hong Kong. With the help of a guide, we will reach Victoria Peak for a fantastic panoramic view of the harbor and city. We'll then travel to the Island to Repulse Bay, a popular beach for the popular beach overlooking South China Sea. Nearby is the Aberdeen Fishing Village, which is home for boat people living on water. A stop at Stanley Market is a wonderful opportunity to purchase some souvenirs, sportswear, Chinese artworks, and accessories. At the end of the tour, we'll stop at Ocean Terminal & Harbor City, located at the heart of the shopping center in Tsimshatsui. Enjoy some leisure time for dining and shopping before you head to the bus and go to the hotel for Check-in. (Breakfast)
Oct 25 (B): Enjoy a full day at leisure. Use this opportunity to make your own discoveries of this extraordinary city, or take an optional tour to Cheung Chau Island. Coach transfer to the Public Ferry pier in Sheung Wan, Hog Kong. Here, we will board a ferry that will transport us to Cheung Chau Island. This fishing village and beach resort is an escape from the busy city streets. In fact, there are no cars or other motor vehicles in Cheung Chau! Also, in the 18th century, it was a hiding place for pirates. We will take some time to visit the Pek Tai Temple, small souvenir shops, and a small café in Tung Wan Beach. If you'd prefer, bicycles will be available for rent on the island. Enjoy a lunch at one of the local seafood restaurants. In the afternoon, we will return to the hotel. (Breakfast, Lunch). COST $195 p.p.
Oct 26: (B, D) We will depart the hotel and head through the Lion Rock Tunnel to arrive at Wong Tai Sin Temple, which is the most worshiped Taoiust shrine dedicated to the Great Immortal Wong since the 18th century. Kowloon is a marvelous industrial district. We will visit the Jade (meaning "long life and good" in Chinese) Market, where you can get a good bargain on jade items and other small souvenirs. We'll travel through Bird and Flower Street, and visit the Bird Garden, which is home to exotic and singing birds, beautiful and unique bird cages, and other bird care paraphernalia. Also, the Flower Market is full of beautiful flowers to see. In the evening, a farewell dinner at the famous Chinese floating Restaurant. (Breakfast, dinner)
Oct 27: Depart your hotel after breakfast and transfer to airport for your return flight home. (Breakfast)
This itinerary is approximate. The exact times, days and destinations may vary due to unforeseen circumstances.