Explore the glories of Xi'an including the ancient Terra gotta army, City Wall, Provincial Museum, and Big Goose Pagoda. Have a Li River cruise through misty limestone cliffs, bamboo fringed riverbanks, and green hillsides. Crown your journey with Hong Kong and travel to Victoria Peak to enjoy its city views.
Day 1: Beijing. You are welcomed on arrival and transferred to your luxury hotel.
Day 2: Beijing. Walk in the footsteps of the emperors on a tour of the Forbidden City, Temple of Heaven, and lovely Summer Palace of the Empress Dowager. Lunch with a view at a renowned revolving restaurant. Includes: (B), (L).
Day 3: Beijing. Take in the dramatic sight of the Great Wall, ascending to the horizon over the rugged hills of China's north frontier. Continue to the Ming Tombs and dine tonight on delicious Peking Duck. Includes: (B), (L), (D).
Day 4: Beijing - Shanghai. Your Beijing exploration continues with a pedicab tour of the pre-Revolutionary hutong neighborhoods and an ascent of the 15th-century Drum Tower, before flying to cosmopolitan Shanghai. Includes: (B), (L).
Day 5: Shanghai. Your tour of this city of contrasts features the Yuyuan Gardens, dating to the 15th century, the bustling riverfront Bund, Shanghai Museum, and charming Children's Palace. A thrilling evening at the Shanghai Acrobatics Show completes an exciting day. Includes: (B), (L).
Day 6: Shanghai - Yangtze River Cruise. Your Yangtze adventure begins this evening under the glittering lights of the Shanghai riverfront, as you depart on your cruise amidst a lively scene of freighters and sampans. Settle into your spacious, outside cabin aboard ship before a fine dinner. Includes: (B), (D).
Day 7: Yangtze River Cruise. Your first full day on the Yangtze begins with a breakfast buffet of Western and Chinese foods. Then cruise mid-day to China's scenic southern capital, Nanjing, and visit the tombs of the Ming Emperor, and national hero Sun Yat-sen. Includes: (B), (L), (D).
Day 8: Yangtze River Cruise. Rise early for a spectacular day at Huangshan also called "Yellow Mountains", a wild, rugged range of granite peaks distinguished by their unusual rock formations, twisted trees, and the surreal appearance of the mountains "floating" in a golden sea of clouds at daybreak. Return to ship through verdant scenes of orchards and hot springs. Includes: (B), (L), (D).
Day 9: Yangtze River Cruise. A full day tour features the alpine style resort of Mt. Lushan, nestled among 90 peaks and famous for its beautiful vistas, waterfalls, and Buddhist temples. Return aboard ship for dinner. Includes: (B), (L), (D).
Day 10: Yangtze River Cruise. Enjoy a day of scenic cruising with an excursion to Wuhan, for visits to the Yellow Crane Tower, Guiyuan Temple and East Lake. Back on ship, your American cruise director and guides share insights on local culture with a variety of activities. Includes: (B), (L), (D).
Day 11: Yangtze River Cruise. Cruise to the confluence of the Yangtze and vast Dongting Lake, where small boats carry us to Junshan Island, a fairytale setting of rare flowers and foliage. Also tour the golden roofed Yueyang Tower, the 8th century Cishi Pagoda, and Quzi and Wen Temples. Includes: (B), (L), (D).
Day 12: Yangtze River Cruise. Awaken to hazy sunbeams lighting our approach to the famed Three Gorges. Tour the massive dam project before cruising through the locks of Gezhouba Dam to Xiling Gorge, a 47 mile canyon of boulder strewn rapids flanked by cliffs, rock formations, and temples as old as 1500 years. The enchantment continues as we enter Wu Gorge, embraced by lush walls rising 2000 feet. Includes: (B), (L), (D).
Day 13: Yangtze River Cruise. Dock today at Wushan for a longboat voyage through the Daning River rapids to the Three Small Gorges, hugged by towering cliffs scattered with ancient relics. Watch for golden-haired monkeys and rare bird life in the wilderness. The day is crowned by our brief, but dramatic, sail through the narrow Qutang Gorge. Includes: (B), (L), (D).
Day 14: Yangtze River Cruise. Sail today through fragrant peach and citrus orchards and enjoy a tour of either the "ghost city" of Fengdu or mountainous Wanxian, an old river city prized for its silk industry and markets. Includes: (B), (L), (D).
Day 15: Chongqing - Xian. Disembark in Chongqing, and fly to Xian, gateway to the Silk Road. Includes: (B), (L).
Day 16: Xi'an. Explore the glories of Xian including the ancient Terra gotta army, City Wall, Provincial Museum, and Big Goose Pagoda. Crown the day with a banquet and stage gala at Tang Dynasty Theater. Includes: (B), (L), (D).
Day 17: Xian - Guiling. Fly south to the watercolor landscapes of Guiling on the Li River, whose ethereal beauty has been immortalized by centuries of painters and poets. This afternoon, tour the city and Reed Flute Cave, filled with grottoes, pillars, and Tang dynasty inscriptions. Includes: (B), (L), (D).
Day 18: Guiling. A full day Li River cruise through misty limestone cliffs, bamboo fringed riverbanks, and green hillsides will be a highlight of your tour. Tonight dine, and enjoy a folkloric show. Includes: (B), (L), (D).
Day 19: Guiling - Guangzhou - Hong Kong. Your exploration of southern China continues with a short flight to Guangzhou, the famous old seaport of Canton. If time permits, enjoy an overview of the city's elegant temples, old European estates, and boulevards teeming with shops and famous restaurants. Then board a hydrofoil and sail from the Pearl River Delta to nearby Hong Kong. Now rejoined with China, this former British colony remains as vibrant and forward looking as ever. Includes: (B), (L).
Day 20: Hong Kong. Travel by coach to Victoria Peak to enjoy its city views, then continue to the beaches of Repulse Bay, the Stanley shopping mecca, and the floating sampan village of Aberdeen. Includes: (B).
Day 21: Hong Kong. Enjoy a final day at leisure to shop or perhaps venture out by ferry to Kowloon or the traditional villages of the outer islands. Includes: (B).
Day 22: Hong Kong - Home. Depart for home with unforgettable memories of this ancient land. Includes: (B).
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