Arrive at any time. Arrival transfer is included. Enjoy Beijings famed Peking duck at our welcome dinner tonight.
Today, we discover one of the most iconic wonders of the worldthe Great Wall of China. This impressive series of fortifications was built between the 3rd century BC and the 17th century AD along Chinas northern border, and spans more than 20,000 kilometers. Well explore the less-visited Mutianyu section, taking in sweeping views of the countryside from the ancient watchtowers. Opt to ascend a section of the wall by cable car; then hike up to Mutianyus highest point and choose to slide back down to the entrance in a toboggan.
Delve into the fascinating history of Beijing on a full-day tour. Visit the palaces and elegant galleries of the Forbidden Cityseat of the Ming and Qing dynasties for more than five centuriesand walk across vast Tiananmen Square, where some of Chinas most significant political events have taken place. Venture to the elegant Temple of Heaven, where the emperor would come to pray and perform sacrificial rites, and watch locals practice tai chi in the surrounding gardens. Later, well take a walk through the hutongs or hidden alleyways of Beijings old neighbourhoods.
Continue to explore Beijing today and enjoy some free time on your own. In the evening, catch an overnight train to Xi’an, one of Chinas four ancient capitals and the eastern terminus of the Silk Road.
Explore Xi’an like a local this morning, hopping on a bike to ride along the citys well-preserved 14th-century walls. Later, hit the streets of the vibrant Muslim Quarter, known for its mouthwatering street food, and enjoy a visit to Gaos Grand Courtyard. This beautifully restored mansion belonged to a Ming-era official, and offers an insight into traditional Chinese family life. Round off your visit with a performance of shadow puppetry, an ancient Chinese folk art.
Visit the famed terra-cotta army, fashioned more than 2,000 years ago to protect the tomb of Qin Shi Huang, Chinas first emperor. Well spend half a day learning about this archaeological treasure and admiring the artistic detail of the thousands of life-size sculptures. Afterward, enjoy lunch in a nearby village, where local farmers first discovered the terra-cotta warriors in 1974. Opt for a dumpling banquet this evening, getting a chance to taste traditional northern Chinese cuisine.
Fly to Yangshuo in China’s lush southwestern region, situated at the meeting point of the Li and Yulong Rivers and ringed by dramatic limestone peaks. Float down the Li River on a traditional vessel, winding around karst towers and gliding past terraced rice fields and local fishermen on bamboo boats. Tonight, well enjoy dinner at a G Adventuressupported restaurant, which provides rural women with opportunities to become self-reliant.
Venture further into the scenic countryside this morning, trekking through peaceful rural villages, fruit orchards, and rice paddies. Later, delve into the regions cuisine on a visit to a Yangshuo market, where well learn about the ingredients used to prepare typical dishes. Then try your hand at whipping up some of these local specialities at a cooking class, and enjoy your creations for dinner.
Rise early for a private tai chi class with a local expert and learn about the health benefits of this ancient Chinese exercise, practiced by millions around the world. Later, travel to the town of Yangshuo and wander through its quaint, caf-lined streets. Spend the afternoon at leisure, and opt to enjoy a stunning theatrical performance over the Li River.
Fly to Shanghai, one of Chinas most bustling metropolises. Set off on a stroll of the Bund, the downtown riverfront district, and take in Shanghais colonial architecture and futuristic skylinea mesmerizing mix of old and new. Explore the city on your own time this evening.
Spend the day soaking up vibrant Shanghai on your own. Opt to visit the Shanghai Museum, home to a world-class collection of ancient Chinese art; roam the beautiful Yuyuan Garden, a classical Chinese garden dating to the Ming era; enjoy a spectacular acrobatic show; ascend to the top of the iconic Oriental Pearl, one of the tallest TV towers in the world; and much more.
Depart at any time.