Our spectacular journey begins in Beijing, the capital of China. The resplendent golden roofs of the Forbidden City, the historic Tiananmen Square, the poetic Summer Palace and the Great Wall reflect the imperial splendor of this amazing city. A way stop at Chengdu in the Sichuan Mountains gives us the opportunity to acclimate ourselves to the higher altitudes while we visit the God of Wisdom Monastery.
Chengdu is the capital of Sichuan Province, the home of the Giant Panda, and is one of the famous historical and cultural cities in China with a temperate climate and rich produce, known as "heaven". We will tour the Panda center, Dujiangyan Irrigation System, Dufu Cottage and the ancient Han Dynasty Tomb. We continue our ascent to Lhasa, capital of Xizang Autonomous Region (Tibet), an area cut off for centuries from the outside world.
Visit the imposing Potala Palace, the former seat of spiritual and secular power in Tibet, that houses the holy script, shrines and prayer halls lit by yak-butter lamps. You can still hear the melodic chanting of the palace monks there. As we leave for Southwest China, the landscape changes from Himalayan highlands to Xi'an, the ancient capital that holds the greatest appeal for those most interested in the history of the Middle Kingdom.
Incredible outings take us to one of the most important archaeological discoveries of the century; the Tomb Complex of Emperor Qin's army of over 6,000 Terra Cotta Warriors. Visit the Ancient City Walls and Big Wild Goose Pagoda which houses sacred Buddhist script brought from India at a time when religions were born. Our fantastic journey ends in the old "treaty port" of Shanghai, where we'll tour a city full of stately European buildings.
Twisting streets, lined with teahouses, shops and reataurants carry us along to some of the city's best sightseeing highlights such as the Bund, Yuyuan Gardens, and the Temple of the Jade Buddha. One of the advantages of traveling with China Professional Tours is that local staff will handle all the practical details of your stay thus freeing your time for the enjoyment of your personal journey. The Above the Clouds journey plan takes you to some of the most beautiful areas of China.
However, no matter when you visit, the 12,000 foot altitude of Lhasa valley is a factor to consider. We also travel to untamed and agrarian regions of China where tourism is relatively new and conditions can be challenging. Cultural enthusiasts, eco-tourists and seasoned travelers looking for adventure will all find the Above the Clouds itinerary immensely rewarding.
Day 1: Departure. Depart the United States on your international flight to Beijing.
Day 2: Arrive in Beijing, meet the guide and transfer to 4* Hotel.
Day 3: Full day tour to Tiananmen Square, Forbidden City, Summer Palace. Includes: (B), (L), (D).
Day 4: Full day tour to Great Wall, Ming Tombs. Enjoy Peking Duck Dinner at Quanjude Restaurant. Includes: (B), (L), (D).
Day 5: Transfer to airport for flight to Xi’an. Arrive in Xi’an, meet the guide and transfer to 4* hotel. Afternoon visit Ancient City Wall, Wild Goose Pagoda. Includes: (B), (L), (D).
Day 6: Full day excursion to Terra Cotta Warriors, Provincial History Museum. Enjoy Dumpling dinner and Tang Dynasty show at Shange. Includes: (B), (L), (D).
Day 7: Transfer to airport for flight to Chengdu. Arrive in Chengdu, meet the guide and transfer to 4* hotel. Afternoon visit Panda Breeding Center. Includes: (B), (L), (D).
Day 8: Transfer to airport for flight to Lhasa. Arrive in Lhasa, meet the guide and transfer to 4* Hotel; Rest of the day free at leisure to adjust to altitude. Includes: (B), (L), (D).
Day 9: Full day tour of the Potala Palace, Sera Monastery, Norbulinka. Includes: (B), (L), (D).
Day 10: Full day tour of the Drepung Monastery, Jokhang Temple, Barkor Street, and visit a Traditional Tibetan Hospital. Includes: (B), (L), (D).
Day 11: Transfer to airport for flight to Shanghai. Arrive in Shanghai, meet the guide and transfer to 4* hotel. Afternoon visit the Bund. Includes: (B), (L), (D).
Day 12: Full day visit Yu Garden, Chenghuangmiao – Old Quarter of Shanghai, Shanghai Museum. Includes: (B), (L), (D).
Day 13: Transfer to airport for exit flight to the United States. Includes: (B).
Also see tour packages in:
Asia China Local Culture Cultural Journey Pilgrimage/Spirituality