15 Days Classic China Tour with Minority Exploration

  • Tour Code:CCT11
  • Tour Duration: 15 Days
  • Destination:Beijing, Dali, Guilin, Kunming, Lijiang, Shanghai, Xi'an, Yangshuo
  • Tour overview:This classic China tour allows visitors to witness the colorful traditions of China’s Ethnic Minority Groups. In the ancient towns of Yunnan Province’s Dali and Lijiang, you can see how the Bai and Naxi Ethnic Minority Groups have lived for centuries. These ancient towns have remained virtually unchanged for hundreds of years. The Naxi writing is the only hieroglyphic text still being used on Earth. This tour will also take you to the incredible cities of Beijing and Shanghai and through the famous scenery of Guilin and Yangshuo. This tour is truly unforgettable.
  • Tour Price:2-5 pax (Tourist Class) : USD2476 per person

Day by Day Itinerary

Day 1 Arrival Beijing

Transfer via: Flight on your own arrangement

Upon your arrival you will be greeted by our local guide and then transferred to your hotel by a private air-conditioned car. For the rest of the day you will enjoy some leisure time.

Day 2 Beijing ( B, L )

Sightseeing: Temple of Heaven, Tiananmen Square, Forbidden City

This morning our tour will begin with a visit of the Temple of Heaven, which was completed in 1420, and expanded over the years by two Qing Dynasty Emperors. It was the place where the Emperor came every winter solstice to worship heaven and to solemnly pray for a good harvest. With the three blue-tiled cone-shaped roofs, a unique wooden and blue-tiled structure built without a nail, it has become a worldwide symbol of Beijing.

After lunch, we will go on our city tour to visit Tiananmen Square, the symbolical heart of China and gathering place for the masses. It is the biggest public square in the world, which can hold one million people.

From here we will walk across the Golden River Bridge to visit the Forbidden City and experience the ancient Emperor's daily life. For 5 centuries Chinese emperors carried out their administration here. With almost 10,000 rooms, it was the centre of the Ming and Qing dynasties, a massive complex of palaces, pavilions, courtyards and gardens where 24 emperors used to live. Forbidden City was the largest palace in the world, and in the past it was indeed a forbidden place for commoners. Your tour here will include private access to the Emperor's palace.

Day 3 Beijing ( B, L )

Sightseeing: Badaling Great Wall, Ming Tombs, Sacred Way, 2008 Beijing Olympic venues

After experiencing the royal lifestyle, today we will be transferred to the surrounding countryside of Beijing and visit the Badaling Great Wall, the pride of China and one of the Seven Wonders of the World. Whereas Genghis Khan contemplated it as a military obstacle, Richard Nixon described it as one of humankind's greatest achievements. You will be able to climb and walk one of the best preserved sections of the 2,000 years old ancient wall, admiring the splendid mountain views. Bring a jacket and layer- although it is breezy, the climbing is tough. So be in a good shape!

In the afternoon we will visit the legendary Ming Tombs, which are situated at the foot of Heavenly Longevity Mountain, Changping, northwest of Beijing. Since there are 13 Ming emperors buried there, this place was called the 13 Ming Tombs. You will walk along the Sacred Way, a road guarded by stone statues on both sides, as the ancient emperors did to hold a memorial ceremony for their ancestors. In addition, you will encounter the marble tombs of the Ming Dynasty emperors.

On the way back to hotel, you will be driven to visit the main 2008 Beijing Olympic venues, take an exterior visit of both the, Beijing National Stadium (Bird's Nest/Olympic Stadium), National Swimming Centre('The Water Cube'),feel free to take some photos of the stadiums.

Day 4 Beijing/ Xian ( B, L )

Transfer via: Flight arranged by us
Sightseeing: Hutongs, Summer Palace

We will experience a unique Hutong tour by taking a rickshaw this morning. Hutongs are a kind of ancient city alley or lane and are very typical for Beijing. Most of them can be found close to the Forbidden City, and many were built during the three dynasties of Yuan, Ming and Qing. Today, the Hutong is a living museum of Beijing history showing the traditional lifestyle of Beijing people.

We will continue by visiting the Summer Palace. Equally famous as the Forbidden City, the Summer Palace is called 'Yiheyuan' (Garden of Nurtured Harmony) in Chinese. Until nowadays, it is the best preserved and the largest imperial garden in China. You will regret it if you leave Beijing without having visited this grand imperial garden.

Later that day you will take the flight to Xi'an. After your arrival there, you will be met and transferred to your hotel by our local guide.

Day 5 Xi'an (B, L)

Sightseeing: Terra-cotta Warriors and Horses, Big Wild Goose Pagoda, Bell Tower

Today you will experience the highlights of Xi'an. After breakfast, you will depart you're your hotel. You will visit the amazing 2000-year-old Terra-cotta Warriors and Horses. Regarded as the 8th Wonder of the World, the Terra-cotta Warriors and Horses are the most significant archeological excavations of the 20th century. Over 2,200 years ago, the first emperor of China, Qin Shi Huang, ordered the construction of a vast army of Terra-cotta warriors in search of immortality. After his early death they were buried with him to protect his empire.

Another highlight today is the Big Wild Goose Pagoda. Situated in the south of Xian city, it is one of the main constructions in the famous Buddhist temple-Da-Ci-En Temple. There, the well-known Buddhist Master Xuanzang (Monk Tripitaka) stored his collection of classic Buddhist artifacts brought from India in Tang Dynasty. Now it is the Landmark of Xian.

Then we will go on to visit the Bell Tower, which is the best-preserved and best-known one among many. The Bell Tower was built in 1384. In early mornings of ancient times it had the mission of ringing the bell and giving the correct time to the whole city, hence called "The Bell Tower". With magnificent carved beams and painted rafters, this classical building is truly elegant.

Day 6 Xi'an / Guilin (B, L)

Transfer via: Flight arranged by us
Sightseeing: Ancient City Wall, Reed Flute Cave, Fubo (wave-subduing) Hill

In the morning we will visit the Ancient City Wall. You will experience a half-hour's hike along the Ancient City Wall. You will experience a half-hour's hike along the Ancient City Wall. It is the largest and best preserved present city wall in ancient China and is probably the best military battlement in the world. If you want to, you can rent a bicycle for a ride on top of the spectacular city wall.

Then you will take the flight to Guilin. After you arrived in Guilin, you will be met and transferred to your hotel by our local guide.

In the afternoon we will visit Reed Flute Cave, which is a vast and very impressive cave system, and one of the most important sights of Guilin. Known as "the Palace of Natural Arts", you can see beautiful stalactites & stalagmites and learn how they formed.

We will continue to visit the Fubo (wave-subduing) Hill. Located at the conjunction of the Li River & the Peach Blossom River, the whole hill looks very much like a giant elephant with a long trunk drinking out of the river; it is the symbol of Guilin city.

Day 7 Guilin / Yangshuo / Guilin (B, L)

Sightseeing: Li River Cruise, West Street

Guilin is famous for its picturesque scenery, and the best way to see it is from the deck of Li River Cruise ships. In the morning you will depart from your hotel and be transferred to the Zhujiang Pier (about 1 hour drive) for a 4.5 hours wonderful cruise. You will enjoy the unique mountains, peaceful green fields, farms and villages with water buffalos, cows wondering around on both sides of the river bank.

In the afternoon you will disembark at the old town Yangshuo. Having a history of more than 1,400 years, West Street is the oldest street in Yangshuo. You will have some time to explore the old town’s lovely attractions and will be transferred back to Guilin city in the evening.

Day 8 Guilin / Kunming (B, L)

Transfer via: Flight arranged by us
Sightseeing: Elephant Trunk Hill, Seven Star Park

This morning we will begin with visiting the Elephant Trunk Hill. Located at the conjunction of the Li River & the Peach Blossom River, the whole hill looks very much like a giant elephant with a long trunk drinking out of the river; it is the symbol of Guilin city.

Afterwards we will make a walk through Seven Star Park. It is one of the best urban parks in China. The park is in the east bank of Lijiang, the largest park in Guilin with the theme of rock caves.

Then you will take the flight to Kunming. Arriving in Kunming, you will be met and transferred to your hotel by our local guide.

Day 9 Kunming (B, L)

Sightseeing: Stone Forest, Golden Temple

Today we will go on a full day trip to Stone forest. Due to a process of weathering and erosion, nature has created an art gallery of stone sculpture here. This typical karst physiognomy seems like a forest of stone pillars and boulders. You will see fascination natural creations like Lion Arbor, Sword Peak Pond, Lotus Peak, Moon Lake, Jade Lake, and Dadie Waterfall.

Then we will head to Golden Temple, located on top of Mingfeng (Singing Phoenix) Hill. It is the largest copper temple in China and is also known as the Tongwa Temple (Bronze Tile Temple).

Day 10 Kunming / Dali (B, L)

Transfer via: Flight arranged by us
Sightseeing:
Erhai Lake, Ancient City of Dali, Three Pagodas of Chongsheng Temple

In the morning your local guide will transfer you to te airport where you take the flight to Dali.Upon your arrival there, you will be greeted by your local guide and then visit Erhai Lake. Erhai Lake is the largest highland lake next to Dianchi and one of the seven biggest fresh water lakes in China. It means, 'sea shaped like an ear', in Chinese. Implying that the lake is ear shaped and as large as a sea, hence it was so named. The lake covers an area of 250 square kilometers and is located about two kilometers east of Dali.

The next stop will be the Ancient City of Dali, which is a magnificent ancient city with a perimeter of 6 kilometers. Its former city walll is 7.5 meters high and 6 meters thick. There used to be four city gates, each on one side. On the gates were the gate towers. While Xiaguan, the capital of the Autonomous Region of Dali, depicts you an scene of prosperity and bloom, the Ancient City of Dali will give you a simple, unsophisticated and quiet impression.

Finally you will see the Three Pagodas of Chongsheng Temple. It is a symbol of the history of Dali City, and a record of the development of Buddhism in the area. As its name implies, Three Pagodas are made of three ancient independent pagodas forming a symmetrical triangle. This is unique in China.

Day 11 Dali / Lijiang (B, L)

Transfer via: Private Car on our arrangement
Sightseeing:
House of Bai people in Xizhou, Tie-Dyeing Zoucheng, Lijiang Ancient Town

In the morning you will take a private car into the dicrection of Lijiang. On the way, you will make a first stop at a house of Bai people in Xizhou. The town of Xizhou is next to Erhai Lake and the Wanhua Brook. Historically, it was a military fortress of Nanzhao Kingdom and a temporary palace of the King of Nanzhao. Because of its favorable geographical situation, the town used to be a commercial centre before 1949 and where more than 140 national capitalist families used to live. Their houses are of the typical Bai design known as "Sanfang Yizhaobi" (a courtyard rooms on three sides and a screen wall on the remaining side) and "Sihe Wutianjing" (one big courtyard with four smaller ones at the four corners of the main one).

Our next stop will be Tie-Dyeing Zhoucheng, the largest and the farthest northern village of Dali City. The village has 7,571 inhabitants of 1,470 families. The entire village is in a square shape with row upon row of houses.

Arriving in Lijiang, you will be met by your local guide and then visit Lijiang Ancient Town. It is also known as Dayan Town in Lijiangba and was included in the UNESCO world heritage list in 1997.  It was first built in the Southern Song Dynasty and in 1253 and became larger during Ming and Qing dynasties.

Day 12 Lijiang (B, L)

Sightseeing: Yulong Snow Mountain, Dongba Village, Naxi Ancient Music

Today we will depart to Yulong Snow Mountain. It is the southernmost marine glacier in the temperate zone of the northern hemisphere. Altogether there are 13 peaks along the range, stretching for over 35km from south to north. The summit, Shanzidou, is 5596 meters above sea level. Viewed from afar, the snow-capped range resembles a silver dragon with snow curling up its middle. Rich forest, herb and animal resources thrive on the mountain.

On our way we will stop at Dongba Village in Yushui Stockade, which is built completely according to the traditional life style of Naxi Minority. You can feel the traditional atmosphere of national culture from the layout of its yard, building facilities, tools and details of life. Generations of national musicians devote themselves to Naxi Ancient Music and make it a part of Naxi culture. You can take the opportunity to hear Naxi Ancient Music today; it is guaranteed to be an unforgettable life experience.

Day 13 Lijiang / Shanghai (B, L )

Transfer via: Flight arranged by us
Sightseeing: Nanjing Road and the Bund

You will enjoy some free time at your own leisure today, Then you will take the flight to Shanghai. Arriving in Shanghai, you will be met and transferred to your hotel by our local guide. Together, you will take a walk to the famous Nanjing Road and the Bund. They are among the most recognizable architectural symbols of Shanghai and therefore a must-see when visiting Shanghai.

Day 14 Shanghai (B, L)

Sightseeing: Shanghai Museum, Jade Buddha Temple, Oriental Pearl Tower, Yuyuan Garden

Today we will start the day with a visit of Shanghai Museum which is the biggest museum of China. It incorporates a collection of over 120,000 pieces of Chinese art & cultural relics and is especially famous for its treasures of bronzes, ceramics, paintings and calligraphy.

Then we head to the Jade Buddha Temple. The old-time and classical architectural style makes the temple unique and inimitable in this modern city. Both, the Sitting Buddha and the Recumbent Buddha are carved with whole white jade. If you're lucky, you can watch the monks serving a ceremony in a side room.

After lunch, we will visit the Oriental Pearl Tower, the highest TV Tower in Asia, which creates a picture of 'twin dragons playing with pearls'. The entire scene is a photographic jewel that excites the imagination and attracts thousands of visitors all year-round.

Then we will take a relaxing walk to the lovely Yuyuan Garden, a beautiful garden in the south of the Yangtze River. Wandering through it, you will find pavilions, corridors, streams, courtyards as well as many other natural features.

Day 15 Departure Shanghai (B)

Transfer via: Flight on your own arrangement

Today will be free for your own purposes, until our guide will escort you to the airport for your next destination.

Tour Price

Season Tour Class Group Size Single Room
Supplement
1pax 2-5pax 6-9pax
Peak Season 3*(Tourist Class) $4006 $2833 $2476 $440
4*(Deluxe Class) $4470 $3065 $2708 $672
5*(First Class) $5142 $3401 $3044 $1008

1. Normally hotels allow a maximum of 3 adults per room with an extra bed, at extra charge. Some hotels will allow three adults and a small child.
2. Tour price is indicative only, please enquire for a detailed quotation.
3. More people more discounts. Please enquire for more details.