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A collection of carefully selected itineraries


About our Trips Trip Runs on Private Basis with Minimum Two to Go!

Unique Experiences

Do not worry about last minute cancellations due to poor response from group tours. Indulge in the luxury of your own guide and transport on our trips that run on a private basis with a minimum of two persons to go.

Indulge in the best of each destination, be it a visit to the weekend markets, participation in festivals or encounters with the locals. It’s the unexpected unique experiences that make an extraordinary journey.

Expert’s Advice

Great Flexibility

Being on a private tour, you can now choose your own departure dates and enjoy great flexibility during your tour, without having to follow strictly to a prefixed schedule.

Our Tour Consultants travel extensively to the destinations we specialize in. Armed with firsthand knowledge, we are able to plan and offer good recommendations to make your trip a successful and an enjoyable one.

Tailor-making

Our Guides Make the Difference

Choose only the destinations, dates and sights you long to experience. Contact us to tailormake your ideal vacation, one that meets your requirements.

We take pride in our carefully selected local guides. With a good command of the English language and in-depth knowledge of their homeland, they bring out the best in a place.

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Contents

Beijing and Xian

Yunnan

Sichuan and the Yangtze River

Shanghai and Eastern China

PAGE 02

PAGE 10

PAGE 15

PAGE 20

Guilin and Guizhou

Shanxi, Henan and Shandong

Hunan, Fujian and Guangzhou

Tibet and Qinghai

PAGE 26

PAGE 31

PAGE 34

PAGE 38

Xinjiang and the Silk Road

Northeast China

Inner Mongolia

PAGE 45

PAGE 50

PAGE 52


Beijing and Xian Beijing and

Xian PAGE 02

3000 years of glorious imperial history leaving behind splendid palaces, awesome royal mausoleum, majestic temples and of course the Great Wall. These are best experienced in Beijing and Xian, capitals of the most dynasties. And many of these are now UNESCO World Heritage sites and wonders of the world! In Beijing, the Great Wall, the Forbidden Palace, the Temple of Heaven and the Summer Palace are all sights to behold. But one should also take time to explore the Hutong and experience life of Old Beijing as well as take in aspects of its modernity – the Olympic Bird Nest and Water Cube, the chic Sanlitun area and the 798 Arts district. Xian was the capital of China for the most dynasties including its Golden age in Han and Tang. The Terracotta Soldiers is without doubt the most stunning sights but one should also not miss the excellent Provincial Museum, the Old City wall, Islamic Quarter and the Bell and Drum Tower.

UNESCO sites

• Mausoleum of the First Qin Emperor • Peking Man Site at Zhoukoudian • The Great Wall • Mountain Resort and its Outlying Temples, Chengde • Summer Palace, an Imperial Garden in Beijing • Temple of Heaven: an Imperial Sacrificial Altar in Beijing • Imperial Tombs of the Ming and Qing Dynasties

Top 5 Experiences

< Spending a night in a

unique and charming accommodation at the foot of the Great Wall and then watch sunrise the next morning on it.

< Be awed by the Terracotta soldiers.

< Learn the unique

traditional culture among the lanes of the Hutong, right in the heart of bustling Beijing.

< A splurge in Aman Resort

and have priority access to the Summer Palace before the crowd arrives.

< Let the imperial grandeur unfold before you in the Forbidden Palace.


Our Recommended Hotels Beijing

By the Great Wall

Aman at Summer Palace: adjacent to the East Gate of the Summer Palace grounds, it is housed in a series of dwellings, most of which date back over one hundred years. Simple and redolent of the past, the rooms and suites feature traditional wooden screens and bamboo blinds, creating a mysterious sense of peeking through the veil of time to the romance of another era.

Commune by the Great Wall: boasts of a private collection of contemporary architecture designed by 12 Asian architects, currently comprising of 42 villas with 190 suites. There is a private path accessing the Great Wall at the Commune by the Great Wall.

www.amanresorts.com

The Peninsula: a deluxe 5 star hotel of the prestigious Peninsula chain, situated right by Wangfujing – the main shopping mall of Beijing. With chic outdoor café and boutiques, it is the perfect place to feel the pulse of China. The hotel is within walking distance from Tiananmen Square and Forbidden City. www.peninsula.com

Raffles Beijing: a deluxe boutique 5 star hotel, built in the 1900s, it has long stood as an icon of Beijing’s historical heritage. Ideally situated at the crossroads of famous Chang’an Avenue and Beijing main shopping mall of Wangfujing, the hotel is also within easy walking distance from Tiananmen Square and Forbidden City. www.beijing.raffles.com

The Opposite House: a luxury boutique hotel situated in the heart of Beijing at the Sanlitun Village. Created by renowned Japanese architect Kengo Kuma, this intriguing urban hotel stuns with it’s Zen design. www.theoppositehouse.com

Cote Cour S.L: a boutique hotel with 14 guest rooms, located in the Hutong area of “Old Beijing”. The lounge and courtyard captures the spirit of “East meets the West” fusing contemporary amenities with traditional Chinese designs and architecture. www.hotelcotecoursl.com

www.communebythegreatwall.com

The Schoolhouse Rental Homes at Mutianyu: is an eco retreat created by China Countryside Hotels that has earned a 3 Green Star rating. The houses are located right in the village and are original peasant dwellings that have been transformed into luxurious getaway homes with spectacular closeup views of the Great Wall. Every house comes with modern amenities including Wi-Fi access. All the houses have private gardens but once guests step out of their gate, they are immersed in a living village community. Choose from Grandma’s Place, the Pavilion, or Hillside Haven. www.chinacountrysidehotels.com

Xian Sofitel on Renmin Square Xian: a luxury 5 star hotel located in the grounds of Renmin Square and easily accessible to all the major sights. The rooms are furnished with elegant furniture and chic décor and all the modern amenities befitting a luxury hotel. www.sofitel.com

Hyatt Regency Hotel: a 5-star hotel within Xian’s ancient city walls and close to the shopping districts of the city. www.hyatt.com

Howard Johnson Ginwa Plaza Hotel: conveniently located in the central and outside the famous South Gate of Xian. It is within walking distance to the City Wall and the shopping district. www.ginwaplaza.com

Park Plaza Hotel: a 4-star hotel, the Park Plaza is a modern oasis right in the heart of Beijing’s bustling cultural, commercial, business and entertainment center. www.parkplaza.com

Beijing and

Xian PAGE 03


3 Days Beijing – aman indulge

Beijing and

Xian PAGE 04

DAY 01 ARRIVE BEIJING Fly to Beijing. Drive to Aman Resort adjacent to the East Gate of the Summer Palace grounds. In the afternoon, enter the Forbidden City where China’s imperial history unfolds before you.

collections of contemporary architectures. Your afternoon is at leisure to indulge in the amenities of Aman Resort.

(Evening option: Acrobatic show / Peking Opera / Chinese Kung Fu show) (Lunch included)

DAY 03 DEPART BEIJING Enjoy a tranquil morning walk in the Summer Palace exclusively for Aman guests. Stroll through the lovely gardens and long corridor to the Marble Boat. For a panorama view of this UNESCO listed Imperial Garden, take a boat trip on Kunming Lake. In the afternoon, transfer to the airport for your flight home. (Breakfast included)

DAY 02 BEIJING An hour drive brings you to the Great Wall at Juyongguan. Listed a World Heritage site in 1987, the Pass has long served as a military stronghold with a natural barrier to the capital of the Yuan and Ming Dynasties. Lunch at the Commune by the Great Wall, a restaurant comprising of private

(Breakfast, lunch included)

3 Days Beijing – active weekend DAY 01 ARRIVE BEIJING Fly to Beijing and transfer to your hotel. Cycle along Chang’an Avenue, pass the ancient observatory, the old Beijing Railway Station and the new egg shaped National Theatre via Tiananmen Square. Stop at the entrance of the Forbidden City to start your walking tour and learn China’s imperial history. (Evening option: Acrobatic show / Peking Opera / Chinese Kung Fu show) (Lunch included)

DAY 02 BEIJING Take on a full day of hiking through one of the most spectacular stretches of the Great Wall. A cable car ride from Jinshanling brings you to the start of your hike. Appreciate the wall that snakes through the mountainous landscape, experiencing the beauty of the wall in ruins as well as those renovated to its former glory. The trek ends at Simatai (approximately 11km, takes 4 to 4 ½ hours)

from where you take a leisurely drive through the forested valley to your countryside hotel offering a spectacular view of the wall. (Breakfast, packed lunch included)

DAY 03 DEPART BEIJING Your morning is at leisure. Take a walk around the Mutianyu farming village, admiring homes that have been passed through generations. Option for the Great Wall lovers: A cable car ride from Mutianyu Great Wall takes you to the watch towers for an hour visit along the well constructed wall from the Ming dynasty. For a different experience, take an exciting and speedy toboggan sled down the wall! Transfer to the airport for your flight home. (Breakfast, lunch included)

5 Days Beijing – where tradition meets modern DAY 01 ARRIVE BEIJING Fly to Beijing and transfer to your hotel. Be welcomed into the heart of Chinese imperial history and leading cultural and artistic renaissance centre. DAY 02 BEIJING Begin your tour of Beijing to Tiantan, the Heavenly Temple and catch the locals on their morning exercise. Continue to the old Qianmen pedestrian street to Tiananmen Square and the Forbidden City where China’s imperial history unfolds before you.

Proceed north for a unique tour of the Hutong (traditional neighbourhood) by way of rickshaw. For a prelude of modern Beijing, end your day with a walk on Yandaixie Jie to the lake area, lined with bars and restaurants. (Evening option: Acrobatic show / Peking Opera / Chinese Kung Fu show) (Breakfast, lunch included)


DAY 03 BEIJING Visit the Summer Palace with the lovely garden and lakes - Renshoudian Palace, Deheyuan Theatre Museum, Long Corridor and Marble Boat. Afternoon, explore the modern metropolis of Beijing! Visit the Beijing Olympic venues (with the option to cycle around the venues) before moving to the 798 Art Zone, a fashionable art area with many art organizations, artistsâ&#x20AC;&#x2122; studios, galleries, cafĂŠ and restaurants. After sunset, enjoy a drive to view the bustling metropolis and its glittering neon lights. (Breakfast, lunch included)

Option 2: To Mutianyu A cable car ride from Mutianyu Great Wall takes you to the watch towers where you can start a one hour walk to visit the reconstructed wall from the Ming dynasty. Finish your visit with a speedy toboggan ride down the wall for fun! Beijing

Great Wall hike option: For the adventurous, both options allow 3-4 hours hike on a less visited section of the Great Wall. At the end of the hike, spend the night at Commune by the Great Wall or a countryside hotel offering a spectacular view of the Wall. (Breakfast, lunch included)

DAY 04 BEIJING No trip to Beijing is complete without a visit to the Great Wall. You have two options today: Option 1: To Juyongguan Pass Listed a World Heritage site in 1987, Juyongguan Pass at the Great Wall has long served as a military stronghold with a natural barrier to the capital of the Yuan and Ming Dynasties. Be awed by the intricate carvings of statues of the heavenly gods and sutra scriptures.

DAY 05 DEPART BEIJING Your morning is at leisure. For those staying by the Great Wall, stroll around the Mutianyu farming village, a microcosm of the Chinese countryside. You would be transferred to the airport in the afternoon for your flight home. (Breakfast included)

Note: The program can be condensed to 4 days program.

and

Xian PAGE 05


5 Days Beijing for Family – faces of the chinese capital DAY 01 ARRIVE BEIJING Fly to Beijing and transfer to your hotel. Late afternoon, stroll the grounds of Tiananmen Square and catch the national flag lowering ceremony. DAY 02 BEIJING Tour the Forbidden City and allow history to unfold in this imperial city and take an appreciation course in Chinese traditional instruments at the Imperial Ancestral Temple and you can even learn how to play them! Walk along the old Qianmen pedestrian street with a history of 600 years. (Evening option: Acrobatic show / Peking Opera / Kung Fu show) (Breakfast, lunch included)

DAY 03 BEIJING This morning, you have a choice of one of the following experiences: A. Museum Tour: Visit Beijing Planning Exhibition Hall and enjoy a 3D film of the history of Beijing. Then we visit the large and modern Capital Museum, with full ranges of objects and embody the “famous historical and cultural city”, the “cultural center” and the “international metropolis” of Beijing.

D. Royal Garden Tour: Visit the Summer Palace with the lovely garden and lakes - Renshoudian Palace, Deheyuan Theatre Museum, Long Corridor and Marble Boat. Take a leisurely boat trip on the Kunming Lake to enjoy the picturesque beauty of this royal garden of the Qing dynasty. The guide and car will be at your disposal for the rest of the day till dinner. You may shop at the famous Silk Market, Toy Market or the trendy Nan Luo Gu Xiang lane. (Breakfast included)

DAY 04 BEIJING No visit to Beijing is complete without the Great Wall! A cable car ride from Mutianyu Great Wall takes you to the watch towers where you can start an hour walk to visit the reconstructed wall from the Ming dynasty. For a different experience, take an exciting and speedy toboggan sled down the wall! On your way back, visit the new Beijing Olympic venues (with the option to enjoy an hour cycling tour). Option to stay by the Great Wall: At the end of the day, spend the night in a countryside hotel with spectacular views of the Great Wall. (Breakfast, lunch included)

B. Hutong Tour: Go on a unique Hutong (traditional neighborhood) tour – take a traditional rickshaw ride, visit a local family and climb the Bell Tower for a bird’s eye view of the old residential area. C. Cycling Tour: One of the best ways to explore Beijing is to ride a bicycle in this bicycle kingdom! Cycle along Chang’an Avenue, pass the ancient observatory, the intercity wall ruins and the old Beijing Railway Station. Also ride via the Tiananmen Square to the new egg-shape National Theatre.

DAY 05 DEPART BEIJING You have the morning at leisure. For those staying by the Great Wall, stroll around the Mutianyu farming village, a microcosm of the Chinese countryside. Transfer to the airport for your flight home. (Breakfast included) Note: The program can be condensed to 4 Days program.

Beijing and

Xian PAGE 07


7 Days Xian and Beijing – pages of chinese imperial history DAY 01 ARRIVE XIAN Fly to Xian and transfer to your hotel. Beijing and

Xian PAGE 08

DAY 02 XIAN Today, visit one of the greatest sights of China the Terracotta Warriors. After lunch, drop by the Provincial History Museum and later in the evening; be treated to the spectacular Tang dynasty show with dinner. (Breakfast, lunch, dinner included)

DAY 03 XIAN / BEIJING Spend the morning on the old City Wall (biking along the wall if you like) then visit the Big Wild Goose Pagoda. After lunch, explore the winding alleys of the Muslim Quarter and shopping at the bazaar. Late afternoon, transfer to the airport for your flight to Beijing.

DAY 06 BEIJING No trip to Beijing is complete without a visit to the Great Wall. You have two options today: Option 1: To Juyongguan Pass Listed a World Heritage site in 1987, Juyongguan Pass at the Great Wall has long served as a military stronghold with a natural barrier to the capital of the Yuan and Ming Dynasties. Be awed by the intricate carvings of statues of the heavenly gods and sutra scriptures. Option 2: To Mutianyu A cable car ride from Mutianyu Great Wall takes you to the watch towers where you can start a one hour walk to visit the reconstructed wall from the Ming dynasty. Finish your visit with a speedy toboggan ride down the wall for fun!

(Breakfast, lunch included)

DAY 04 BEIJING Begin your tour of Beijing to Tiantan, the Heavenly Temple and catch the locals on their morning exercise. Continue to the old Qianmen pedestrian street to Tiananmen Square and the Forbidden City where China’s imperial history unfolds before you. Proceed north for a unique tour of the Hutong (traditional neighbourhood) by way of rickshaw. For a prelude of modern Beijing, end your day with a walk on Yandaixie Jie to the lake area, lined with bars and restaurants. (Evening option: Acrobatic show / Peking Opera / Chinese Kung Fu show) (Breakfast, lunch included)

Great Wall hike option: For the adventurous, both options allow 3-4 hours hike on a less visited section of the Great Wall. At the end of the hike, spend the night at Commune by the Great Wall or a countryside hotel offering a spectacular view of the Wall. (Breakfast, lunch included)

DAY 07 DEPART BEIJING Enjoy your morning at leisure. For those staying by the Great Wall, stroll around the Mutianyu farming village, a microcosm of the Chinese countryside. Transfer to the airport for your flight home. (Breakfast included)

DAY 05 BEIJING Visit the Summer Palace with the lovely garden and lakes - Renshoudian Palace, Deheyuan Theatre Museum, Long Corridor and Marble Boat. Afternoon, explore the modern metropolis of Beijing! Visit the Beijing Olympic venues (with the option to cycle around the venues) before moving to the 798 Art Zone, a fashionable art area with many art organizations, artists’ studios, galleries, café and restaurants. After sunset, enjoy a drive to view the bustling metropolis and its glittering neon lights. (Breakfast, lunch included)

Our Suggested Extensions: 3 Days Great Wall Hike – Adventure on the Pride of China Begin your adventure along the backbone of China’s history, arts and culture starting from along the west wall of Gubeikou where the wall is irregular and the view is true rugged beauty. Trek through village paths and camp on the wall at night, its grandeur stands out against the starlit skies. Continue eastward to Simatai, known for its steepness, ingenuity and uniqueness. Away from the frequented sections of the wall, you can truly experience the pride of this majestic wall.


7 Days Xian and Beijing for Family – fun and insight into imperial china DAY 01 ARRIVE XIAN Fly to Xian and transfer to your hotel. DAY 02 XIAN Today, visit one of the greatest sights of China the Terracotta Warriors. After lunch, drop by the Provincial History Museum and in the evening, be treated to the spectacular Tang dynasty show with dinner. (Breakfast, lunch, dinner included)

2. Kite making class. Tie two sticks at right angles, cover them with paper or cloth, and add a tail! Sound simple? The result could be a beautiful piece of art soaring hundreds of feet into the air. 3. Calligraphy class. One of the basic skill and discipline of the Chinese literati, “Shu Fa” (calligraphy) is one of the most abstract and sublime form of art in Chinese culture often thought to be most revealing of one’s personality. (Breakfast, lunch included)

DAY 03 XIAN / BEIJING Get into the action of cow milking and feeding at a working Chinese cattle farm. In the afternoon, visit a cave dwelling and farm painting gallery for a painting lesson. Transfer to the airport in the late afternoon for your flight to Beijing. (Breakfast, lunch included)

DAY 04 BEIJING Tour the Forbidden City and allow history to unfold in this imperial city and take an appreciation course in Chinese traditional instruments at the Imperial Ancestral Temple and you can even learn how to play them! Walk along the old Qianmen pedestrian street with a history of 600 years. (Evening option: Acrobatic show / Peking Opera / Kung Fu show) (Breakfast, lunch included)

DAY 05 BEIJING China is a bicycle kingdom! You can practically go anywhere by bike. This morning, explore the Hutong (traditional neighborhood) like the locals do - by bicycle and try a typical Chinese dumpling (Jiaozi) lunch.

DAY 06 BEIJING No visit to Beijing is complete without the Great Wall! A cable car ride from Mutianyu Great Wall takes you to the watch towers where you can start a one hour walk to visit the reconstructed wall from the Ming dynasty and for a different experience, take an exciting and speedy toboggan sled down the wall! On your way back, visit the new Beijing Olympic venues (with the option to enjoy an hour cycling tour). Great Wall hike option: For the adventurous, both options allow 3-4 hours hike on a less visited section of the Great Wall. At the end of the hike, spend the night at a countryside hotel offering a spectacular view of the Wall. (Breakfast, lunch included)

DAY 07 DEPART BEIJING Enjoy your morning at leisure. For those staying by the Great Wall, stroll around the Mutianyu farming village, a microcosm of the Chinese countryside. Transfer to the airport in the afternoon for your flight home. (Breakfast included)

In the afternoon, select from the following 3 experiences. 1. Chinese paper-cutting in the Hutong area. Master one of the most popular traditional folk art in China. With just a pair of scissors and paper, create magical pieces of handicraft.

Beijing and

Xian PAGE 09


Yunnan Yunnan PAGE 10

Yunnan – “Land South of the Cloud” is one of the most beautiful areas in China. The landscape is extremely diverse, from luxuriant fertile plain to snow capped ranges of the Himalayas, from stunning rice terraces to barren rugged Tibetan plateau. It is also the land of China’s colorful ethnic minorities each with their own lovely villages, unique way of life and interesting folklore.

Top 5 Experiences

< Getting lost in

Lijiang Old Town.

< Hiking the Tiger Leaping Gorge.

Lijiang is the highlight of any trip to Yunnan. It is the heart of the Naxi minority and its old town is now an UNESCO World heritage sites. Ancient canals criss-crossed the old town filled with unique well-preserved house.

< Catch the

Shangri-La - renamed recently after sufficient proof that this is where Hilton described Shangri-la to be. The rugged Tibetan landscape and local Tibetan cultures indeed make it a highlight of any trip to Yunnan and China!

< Sharing the cultural

In Dali, you have the opportunity to experience Linden Gallery, a perfect place to experience the intimate beauty and culture of China. It is dedicated to preserving and sharing the cultural heritage of Asia’s timeless villages.

Impression of Lijiang show by Zhang Yi Mou.

heritage of the local community in Linden Gallery.

< Photograph

For the energetic, the 2 day Tiger Leaping Gorge hike takes you through lovely cultivated terraces along precipitous gorges with the snow-capped Jade Dragon Mountain in constant view. Or make your way to Yuanyang for some of the most gorgeous rice terraces.

UNESCO sites

• Old Town of Lijiang • Three Parallel Rivers of Yunnan Protected Areas

the dramatic rice terraces at Yuanyang when it is filled with water.


Our Recommended Hotels Kunming Green Lake Hotel: located opposite to the Green Lake, this is a big, modern 5-star hotel with well furnished rooms.

Zen Garden-Lion Hill: a boutique hotel located at Lion Hill in the old town of Lijiang. The building reflects a strong Naxi architecture and most of the rooms have marvelous panoramic view over the old town and the surrounding mountains.

www.greenlakehotel.com.cn

www.zengardenhotel.com

Grand Park Hotel: set at the backdrop of the Green Lake, the rooms are elegantly designed in warm hues, exuding a sense of coziness, with some rooms offering view of the lake.

Wangfu Hotel: a 4-star hotel located in the old town, once the site of Prince Mu’s palace, it retains a strong traditional Naxi minority culture in each corner of the hotel.

www.parkhotelgroup.com

www.ljhotel.cn

Dali

Shangri la

Linden Centre: the Linden Centre is an extraordinary combination of comfort, culture and stimulation. This courtyard home is located in Xizhou, a pristine village in Yunnan. The facility is a national protected heritage site that has been restored to its former dynastic elegance.

Ringha Tibetan Village: this resort is a destination in its own right. It is a deluxe boutique hotel with old Tibetan houses brought into a stunning location by the Ringha River. It is part of the prestigious Banyan Tree chain and offers some of the highest international service standard.

www.lindens.cn

www.banyantree.com

Regent Hotel: a modern 5-star hotel located inside Dali Old Town and close to the Changshan Mountain and Erhai Lake.

Songtsam Retreat: a Tibetan style hotel with rustic features, rich wood paneling, beautiful carvings and private fireplaces in every guest room, the style embraces Tibet’s vivid culture.

www.regenthotel.cn

Gurong Hotel: a 4-star hotel, located in Dali old town, within walking distance to the “Foreigner Street”. With the Bai minority style architecture and garden like courtyard, this hotel has a very strong Yunnan culture. www.guronghotel.com

Landscape Hotel: originally an old majestic courtyard, it is now a 3-star hotel decorated in traditional Bai-ethnic style, centrally located in the old town on the foreigner’s street. www.landscapehotel.com

Lijiang Banyan Tree Lijiang: designed in contemporary Naxi style and luxuriously appointed. Opt for a stay in the villas, nestled in a private garden grandeur, visible through solid glass sliding doors with view of the majestic Jade Dragon Snow Mountain. www.banyantree.com

Crown Plaza Lijiang: set amidst a sprawling area of lush greenery, the hotel is strategically located and has a gate that opens directly into the ancient town. The rooms are well furnished and aesthetically designed and retain the charm of the Naxi architecture. www.ichotelsgroup.com

www.accor.com.cn

Gyalthang Dzong Hotel: a hotel that brings international standards of service to the Tibetan borders while maintaining the small and cosy scale of a boutique hotel. In keeping with Tibetan Lamasery style, all rooms face inwards towards a central courtyard, which hosts al fresco dining and an informal outdoor space. www.gyalthangdzong.com

Jian Shui Zhu Family’s Garden: the best available guest house in Jianshui. Its traditional courtyard reflects the Qing dynasty’s architecture.

Yuan Yang Yun Ti Hotel: a 3-star hotel, best available in Yuanyang and located in the old town, close to the terrace rice field.

Yunnan PAGE 11


4 Days Yunnan-Dali – living as part of the local community in southwest of china

Yunnan PAGE 12

DAY 01 ARRIVE KUNMING / DALI Fly to Kunming. Drive 1 ½ hour to the Stone Forest, a natural marvel with hundreds of stone pinnacles forming intricate patterns. Enjoy a traditional Yunnan meal before flying to Dali. Transfer to The Linden Centre, a historic mansion dedicated to preserving the cultural heritage of ethnic villages. (Dinner included)

DAY 03 DALI In the morning, enjoy a walking tour to Xizhou’s oldest homes for a traditional three-course tea ceremony before we take a boat ride on the pristine Er Hai Lake where fish are still caught with the help of pet cormorants. Spend the rest of the afternoon in Dali town, visiting galleries, marble cutters, local artisans, and traditional antique and textile shops. (Breakfast, lunch, dinner included)

DAY 02 DALI In the morning, enjoy a walking tour of the estate and explore a typical Bai house set in a handicraft village in Zhoucheng. For some hands-on experience, take on a cooking lesson with the chefs or enjoy a cycling trip near the estate at your leisure.

DAY 04 DEPART DALI / KUNMING After breakfast, transfer to the airport for your flight home with a transit in Kunming. (Breakfast included)

(Breakfast, lunch, dinner included)

4 Days Yunnan-Lijiang – the naxi heartland DAY 01 ARRIVE LIJIANG Fly to Lijiang and transfer to the hotel. Stroll through Lijiang quaint Old Town with its maze of canals, narrow cobbled streets and well preserved wooden houses. At sunset, ascend Lion Hill for a bird’s eye view of the UNESCO listed town. DAY 02 LIJIANG Explore the outskirts of Lijiang and visit the villages of Longquan, Baisha (for the mural) and Yuhu (Jade Lake). Enjoy the “Impression of Lijiang”, a moving show with the Jade Dragon Mountain as backdrop choreographed by Chinese director, Zhang Yi Mou of Olympics opening fame. Late afternoon, visit the Black Dragon Pond and the Dongba Institute. (Breakfast, lunch included)

DAY 03 LIJIANG Hike along the Tiger Leaping Gorge. Tucked in between the Jade Dragon Mountain and Haba Mountain, this is one of the longest, deepest and narrowest gorges in the world. Return to Lijiang and enjoy the afternoon at leisure. (Breakfast, lunch included) DAY 04 DEPART LIJIANG At leisure until your departure transfer to the airport. (Breakfast included)


5 Days Lijiang Family Fun and Adventure – following the old tea horse trail DAY 01 ARRIVE LIJIANG Fly to Lijiang and transfer to the hotel. Stroll along the Old Town of Lijiang and at sunset, ascend Lion Hill for a bird’s eye view of the UNESCO listed town. DAY 02 LIJIANG / QIAOTOU / OLD TEA HORSE GUESTHOUSE Begin your 2-days Tiger Leaping Gorge trek from Qiaotou. Hike for 2 hours and arrive at Naxi Family Guesthouse for lunch. Afterwhich, attempt the most challenging part of the trek as the trail rises steeply with “28 bends” to the top. (Breakfast, lunch, dinner included) DAY 03 OLD TEA HORSE GUESTHOUSE / LIJIANG Continue hiking along the gorge until Half-way

Guesthouse. From here, start your descent through lovely cultivation and villages. (Breakfast, lunch included)

DAY 04 LIJIANG Explore the outskirts of Lijiang and visit the villages of Longquan, Baisha (for the mural) and Yuhu (Jade Lake). Enjoy the “Impression of Lijiang”, a moving show with the Jade Dragon Mountain as backdrop. Late afternoon, visit the Black Dragon Pond and the Dongba Institute. (Breakfast, lunch included)

DAY 05 DEPART LIJIANG At leisure until your departure transfer to the airport. (Breakfast included)

5 Days Jianshui-Yuanyang – ancient town, ethnic minorities and photography DAY 01 ARRIVE KUNMING / JIANSHUI Fly to Kunming. Drive 4 hours to Jianshui and on the way, stop by the Stone Forest.

group lives and enjoy a visit to the local market.

(Lunch included)

DAY 04 YUANYANG / KUNMING Today is a long drive of 7 hours to Kunming. En route, stop by the Hani village and Red River Valley. (Breakfast, lunch included)

DAY 02 JIANSHUI / YUANYANG Drive 3.5 hours to Yuanyang, renowned for its rice terraces. En route, visit the minority tribe of the Yi people. (Breakfast, lunch included)

DAY 03 YUANYANG Arise to a wonderful sunrise at Duo Yi Shu Terrace. Visit the Sheng Cun village where the Hani minority

(Breakfast, lunch included)

DAY 05 DEPART KUNMING At leisure until your departure transfer to the airport for your flight. (Breakfast included)

6 Days Kunming-Dali-Lijiang – ancient cities and ethnic minorities DAY 01 ARRIVE KUNMING Fly to Kunming. Drive 1 ½ hours to the Stone Forestand enjoy a Yunnan-theme dinner this evening. (Dinner included)

DAY 02 KUNMING / DALI Fly to Dali, center of the Bai ethnic community. Enjoy a traditional 3-course tea ceremony, visit a local Bai house in Zhoucheng and take in sights of the Old Town. (Breakfast, lunch included)

DAY 03 DALI / LIJIANG Drive to Lijiang in the morning with a stop at Shaxi. After lunch, stroll through the Old Town and enjoy sunset at Lion Hill. (Breakfast, lunch included)

DAY 04 LIJIANG Explore the outskirts of Lijiang and visit the villages of Longquan, Baisha (for the mural) and Yuhu (Jade Lake) and in the afternoon, enjoy the “Impression of Lijiang” show and visit the Black Dragon Pond and the Dongba Institute. (Breakfast, lunch included)

DAY 05 LIJIANG Hike along the Tiger Leaping Gorge. Return to Lijiang and enjoy the afternoon at leisure. (Breakfast, lunch included) DAY 06 DEPART LIJIANG At leisure in the morning until your departure transfer to the airport. (Breakfast included)

Yunnan PAGE 13


6 Days Yunnan-Lijiang and the Shangri-La – minorities living by the snow mountain and deep gorges

Yunnan PAGE 14

DAY 01 ARRIVE LIJIANG Fly to Lijiang and transfer to the hotel. DAY 02 LIJIANG Take in the sights of the Black Dragon Pond, a lovely park with green pastures, waterfalls and meandering streams and the Dongba Institute. Stroll through Lijiang’s quaint Old Town with its maze of canals and well preserved wooden houses and enjoy sunset at Lion Hill.

DAY 05 SHANGRI-LA Visit the Songzanlin Monastery - the largest Tibetan Buddhist lamasery in Yunnan Province and one of the 13 famous monasteries of Tibetan Kham. Drive to the valley at the base of Shiga Mountain for a walk on the edge of the Napa Flood Plains. Here you can spot the migrating black-neck cranes in the winter months. In the afternoon, visit a Black Pottery Village and explore the Old Town. (Breakfast, lunch included)

(Breakfast, lunch included)

DAY 03 LIJIANG Explore the outskirts of Lijiang and visit the villages of Longquan, Baisha (for the mural) and Yuhu (Jade Lake) and in the afternoon, enjoy the “Impression of Lijiang” show. (Breakfast, lunch included)

DAY 04 LIJIANG / SHANGRI-LA Today, drive 1½ hours and arrive at the First Bend of the Yangtze River. Another ½ hour drive brings you to the famous Tiger Leaping Gorge. Continue your drive for another 3 hours and arrive at Shangri-la, a beautiful plateau dotted with Tibetan villages. (Breakfast, lunch included)

DAY 06 DEPART SHANGRI-LA Transfer to the airport for your departure flight. (Breakfast included)


Sichuan and the Yangtze River Away from the political center and economic dynamite along the coast, Sichuan is perhaps the heartland of inland China. And it has more than its fair share of cultural and natural attractions. Coming face to face with the panda is a dream for many and at Bifengxia, you can do volunteer work and spend time with intimate interaction with these gentle giants. It’s an experience to cherish for a long time. There is a Chinese saying – “Guilin scenery top the world, but Jiuzhaigou’s scenery top Guilin”. Endless waterfalls, coloured pools set amidst verdant forest and rolling hills, Jiuzhaigou is indeed a paradise for all nature lovers and keen photographers. And Chengdu is said to be where the Chinese enjoy good life. Historical and cultural sites abound including the excellent Sanxingdui Museum, Le Shan with the biggest Buddha statue in the world and Emei Shan, one of the most important Buddhist Mountains in China.

Sichuan and

Top 5 Experiences

PAGE 15

< Intimate interaction with the Panda.

< Admiring the

autumn colors in Jiuzhaigou.

< Examining the

archaeological treasure of Sanxingdui.

< Climbing down the Big Buddha of Le Shan.

< Cruising through

the 3 gorges along The Yangtze River is the longest in China and third longest in the the Yangtze River. world. To the Chinese it means far more than that - it is the mother river of the nation. This cruise takes you through the heart of China - its history and local life as you enjoy the famous scenery of the Three Gorges. Also, marvel at the great man-made wonder – The Three Gorges Dam.

UNESCO sites

the Yangtze Cruise

• Huanglong Scenic and Historic Interest Area • Jiuzhaigou Valley Scenic and Historic Interest Area • Mount Emei Scenic Area, including Leshan Giant Buddha Scenic Area • Dazu Rock Carvings • Mount Qingcheng and the Dujiangyan Irrigation System • Sichuan Giant Panda Sanctuaries - Wolong, Mt Siguniang and Jiajin Mountains


Our Recommended Hotels Sichuan and

the Yangtze Cruise PAGE 16

Chengdu

Chongqing

Shangri-la Hotel: a 5-star hotel offering modern grandeur and legendary Shangri-la hospitality with each rooms enjoying a spectacular views of the Jinjiang River.

Intercontinental Chongqing: a 5-star hotel with a superb location right in Chongqingâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s main shopping and commercial district, boasting luxurious accommodation and numerous dining options.

www.shangri-la.com

www.ichotelsgroup.com

Crown Plaza: a 5-star hotel with a superb location in the city center and walking distance to the shopping area, Chunxi Road.

Howard Johnson ITC Plaza: a 4-star hotel centrally located in the downtown area, within 5 minutes walk to the shopping area of Jie Fang Bei (Liberation Monument Square) and restaurants. Rooms are spacious, tastefully decorated and well appointed for a good rest.

www.ichotelsgroup.com

Minshan Hotel: located in the heart of downtown Chengdu, this is a good valued 4-star hotel with spacious and well appointed rooms.

www.plazaitcchongqing.hojochina.com

www.minshan.com.cn

Cruises Jiuzhaigou Intercontinental Jiuzhai Paradise: a huge 5-star hotel nestled high in the mountains combining Zang and Qiang minority culture elements.

Yangzi Explorer: with the largest cabins and suites on the river, all with private balconies, as well as the highest crew to passenger ratio on the river of 1:1, this is currently the most luxurious and intimate cruise carrying only 124 passengers on the river.

www.ichotelsgroup.com

www.sanctuary-cruising.com

Sheraton Jiuzhaigou Resort: a warm Tibetan welcome awaits at this 5-star hotel surrounded by green mountain scenery located within 5 minutes drive to the entrance of the Jiuzhaigou National Park.

Victoria Cruises: managed by an American company with a quality fleet and outstanding service, the ship provides comfortable twin-share cabins with private bathroom and multi-lingual cruise directors. Victoria at present has 8 boats plying the Yangtze River.

www.starwoodhotels.com

www.victoriacruises.com

Xin Jiuzhai Valley Hotel: located near to the park entrance, the 4-star hotel is well appointed and furnished to ensure a comfortable stay. www.xjzhotel.com


3 Days Face to Face with the Panda – an intimate encounter with the gentle giant DAY 01 ARRIVE CHENGDU / YAAN Fly to Chengdu and drive about 2 hours to Yaan Bifengxia, rated by many as the best Panda Natural Reserve in China.

Return to Chengdu in the afternoon and this evening, you will be treated with the unique and fast disappearing performance of Sichuan Bian Lian (face changing) show.

(Dinner included)

(Breakfast, lunch included)

DAY 02 YAAN / CHENGDU Spend the morning at the Panda Sanctuary – be a volunteer and help to clean and feed them. Enjoy intimate encounter with the gentle giant (optional – depends on the health and mood of the pandas).

DAY 03 DEPART CHENGDU This morning, visit the Wuhou Temple, built in honor of one of the great figures of Chinese history - Zhu Ge Liang. Take a stroll through Jinli Street before transferring to the airport for your flight. (Breakfast included)

5 Days Chengdu, Yaan, Leshan and Emei – panda, cuisine and history DAY 01 ARRIVE CHENGDU / YAAN Fly to Chengdu and drive about 2 hours to Yaan Bifengxia. DAY 02 CHENGDU / YAAN / CHENGDU Be a volunteer at the panda sanctuary to help clean and feed these gentle giants. Return to Chengdu and this evening, you will be treated to a unique performance of the Sichuan Bian Lian (face changing) show. (Breakfast, lunch included)

DAY 03 CHENGDU / LESHAN / EMEI MOUNTAIN Drive about 3 hours to Le Shan with the biggest Buddha statue in the world. View the Le Shan Big Buddha from two perspectives! Climb the entire height of the Buddha and then take a boat ride for a view of this magnificent structure. Drive to Emei Mountain.

DAY 04 EMEI MOUNTAINS / CHENGDU Mountain Emei, a UNESCO world heritage site is one of the four mountain ranges in China that Buddhists consider sacred. Take a cable car to the Golden summit and be inspired by scenery of the sea of clouds and the sunset glow. Drive back to Chengdu for the night. (Breakfast, lunch, dinner included)

DAY 05 DEPART CHENGDU Take a half day city tour to the Wuhou Temple, Dufu Thatched Cottage or a local Tea House before catching a flight home. (Breakfast included)

(Breakfast, lunch included)

5 Days Jiuzhaigou – nature at its best DAY 01 ARRIVE CHENGDU Fly to Chengdu. Take a stroll through Jinli Street and enjoy the unique and fast dying art performance of Sichuan Bianlian (face changing) show. DAY 02 CHENGDU / JIUZHAIGOU – HUANGLONG This morning, fly to Jiuzhaigou, listed as an UNESCO World Heritage site well known for its charming landscape of valleys and waterfalls. En route, visit Huanglong. Be mesmerized by the riot of colours at the Huanglong Valley, renowned for its remarkable landscape of lime formations. Lying at the foot of the Snow Treasure Peak, multi-coloured ponds are scattered along the valley. (Breakfast, lunch included)

DAY 03 JIUZHAIGOU With a full day to explore this charming valley, discover majestic emerald lakes, multi-layered waterfalls, lush forests, snow peaks and Tibetan folk villages all blended in harmony. This evening, be treated to a cultural performance of Tibetan dance and music. (Breakfast, lunch, dinner included)

DAY 04 JIUZHAIGOU Enjoy another full day at Jiuzhaigou. (Breakfast, lunch included)

DAY 05 DEPART JIUZHAIGOU / CHENGDU Fly back to Chengdu to connect your flight home. (Breakfast included)

Sichuan and

the Yangtze Cruise PAGE 17


5 Days Yangtze Cruise – the art of cruising Sichuan

DAY 01 ARRIVE CHONGQING Fly to Chongqing.

and

the Yangtze Cruise PAGE 18

DAY 02 CHONGQING / DAZU / YANGTZE CRUISE Today, we make an excursion to the Dazu Grotto, an UNESCO World heritage site. View works of Buddhist sculptures in the Grotto which is rated as one of the four top Buddhist Caves in China. Stroll along Ciqikou Old Street lined with old tea houses, temples and shops. In the evening, board your boat for your cruise down the Yangtze River. (Breakfast, lunch included)

Note: This is a three night’s downstream cruise and the program may differ slightly based on the cruise ships. DAY 03 YANGTZE CRUISE Disembark for a shore excursion to Wanzhou for a glimpse into one of China’s remote communities. Alternatively, you may disembark in Fengdu popularly known as the “City of Devils” and view the plethora of demon-decorated temples, buildings and statues. (Breakfast, lunch, dinner included)

DAY 04 YANGTZE CRUISE Cruise past the famous gorges. Qutang Gorge is the narrowest stretch of the river but most dramatic. Wu Gorge is noted for the sheer looming appearance of numerous peaks. At Shennong stream, a tributary of Badong, board local longboats pulled by Tujia boatmen. Continue your downstream passage and sail through the majestic Xiling Gorge, one of the longest of the Gorges. This evening, pass through the ship locks of the Three Gorges Dam Project. (Breakfast, lunch, dinner included)

DAY 05 DEPART YICHANG Embark on a shore excursion to the site of the Three Gorges Dam Project and understand the ingenuity behind this world’s largest engineering project. The cruise ends in Yichang. From here, fly to Shanghai for your connecting flight home. (Breakfast included)


7 Days Yangtze Cruise, Dazu Grottoes and Pandas – highlights of the yangtze region DAY 01 ARRIVE CHONGQING Fly to Chongqing. DAY 02 CHONGQING / YANGTZE CRUISE Today, make an excursion to the Dazu Grotto, an UNESCO World heritage site. View works of Buddhist sculptures in the Grotto which is rated as one of the top four Buddhist grottoes in China. Stroll along Ciqikou Old Street lined with old tea houses, temples and shops. In the evening, board your boat for your cruise down the Yangtze River. (Breakfast, lunch included)

Note: This is a three night’s downstream cruise and the program may differ slightly based on the cruise ships. DAY 03 YANGTZE CRUISE Disembark for a shore excursion to Wanzhou for a glimpse into one of China’s remote communities. Alternatively, you may disembark in Fengdu popularly known as the “City of Devils” and view the plethora of demon-decorated temples, buildings and statues. (Breakfast, lunch, dinner included)

DAY 04 YANGTZE CRUISE Cruise past the famous gorges. Qutang Gorge is the narrowest stretch of the river but most dramatic. Wu Gorge is noted for the sheer looming appearance of

numerous peaks. At Shennong stream, a tributary of Badong, board local longboats pulled by Tujia boatmen. Continue your downstream passage and sail through the majestic Xiling Gorge, one of the longest of the Gorges. This evening, pass through the ship locks of the Three Gorges Dam Project. (Breakfast, lunch, dinner included)

DAY 05 YICHANG / CHENGDU Embark on a shore excursion to the site of the Three Gorges Dam Project and understand the ingenuity behind this world’s largest engineering project. The cruise ends in Yichang. From here, fly to Chengdu. (Breakfast, lunch, dinner included)

DAY 06 CHENGDU Tour the Panda Conservatory and interact with these adorable gentle giants. Explore the Sanxingdui Ruin and enjoy the unique and fast dying art performance of Sichuan Bian Lian (face changing) show. (Breakfast, lunch, dinner included)

DAY 07 DEPART CHENGDU This morning, visit the Wuhou Temple, built in honor of one of the great figures of Chinese history - Zhu Ge Liang. Take a stroll through Jinli Street before transferring to the airport for your flight. (Breakfast included)

Sichuan and

the Yangtze Cruise PAGE 19


Shanghai and

Eastern China PAGE 20

Shanghai and Eastern China Pearl of the Orient, Paris of China, whore of the east… Shanghai has always been the epicenter of business, entertainment and glamour of China where the east meets west. It puts away its dancing shoes in the forties and now it is claiming back what it should be hers for the last 4 to 5 decades. Nostalgic colonial past, Asia’s tomorrow’s vibrancy mingle to make this one of the world’s most exciting city! Venture out of Shanghai, we have Suzhou and Hangzhou. There is a Chinese saying, “In heaven there is paradise and on earth, there is Suzhou and Hangzhou”. These are indeed two of the loveliest Chinese cities with Suzhou well known for its gardens and Hangzhou for its lovely West Lake. And in between the two cities, you can explore many “water cities” with well preserved medieval houses and ancient canals. A short flight from Shanghai is Huang Shan or the Yellow Mountain, the inspiration of many Chinese landscape painting. At its foot, picturesque ancient villages await to be explored. Both the mountains and the villages are listed as UNESCO World Heritage sites.

UNESCO sites

• Mount Huangshan • Classical Gardens of Suzhou • Ancient Villages in Southern Anhui – Xidi and Hongcun

Top 5 Experiences

< A walk through history along

the bund in Shanghai with the view of the futuristic skyscrapers in Pudong across the Huangpu River.

< Gazing down at the sea of

clouds with glimpses of bonsailike landscape of pines and rocks at the Yellow Mountain.

< Strolling along the Su Di (Su

Causeway) across the Westlake in Hangzhou at night.

< Learn about the Chinese Garden architecture in Suzhou.

< Explore the UNESCO listed

ancient towns of Hongcun and surrounding at the foot of the Yellow Mountain.


Our Recommended Hotels Shanghai The Peninsula: located on the Bund waterfront, this 14 storey mansion is the first new building on the Bund for 63 years. Nevertheless, it already feels like a grand dame. All rooms are luxuriously furnished and wired with China’s smartest in-room technology. www.peninsula.com

Fairmount Peace: Once the epitome of the decadence and glamour of Shanghai 1930s heyday, this 12-storey Art Deco landmark located on the Bund has re-opened after a three-year makeover with glam-up interiors, updated in-room technology to cater for the new generation of gilded travelers.

Four Seasons Hangzhou: conveniently located near to the historic West Lake, the hotel is an oasis of tranquility in an exciting city. With only 74 superb rooms, the hotel reveals an intimate lakeside village set in lush greenery, melding centuries of tradition with chic contemporary style. www.fourseasons.com

Banyan Tree Hangzhou: away from the city and the Westlake, the resort is nestled within Xixi National Wetland Park. Modeled after a traditional wetland village, the resort exudes the essence of modern chinois chic, combining the hallmark of oriental design and contemporary touches across the sprawling grounds.

www.fairmount.com

www.banyantree.com

88 Xintiandi: a deluxe boutique hotel, located in the internationally acclaimed Shanghai Xintiandi, one of the city’s most exciting districts, set in the former French Concession.

Shangri-la Hotel: the legendary hotel stands on the beautiful north shore of West Lake, overlooking Solitary Hill Island and the graceful Xiling Bridge, in a setting that offers guests scenic grandeur, unsurpassed comfort and secluded tranquility.

www.88xintiandi.com

The Waterhouse at South Bund: located on the banks of the Shanghai’s Huangpu River, the hotel inexorably raises the city’s boutique hotel stakes. Its 19 guestrooms produce an exhilarating atmosphere and the hotel prides itself on integrating into the traditional local environment while challenging its boundaries and distinguishing itself absolutely in order to provide each guest with an unforgettable experience. www.waterhouseshanghai.com

Le Royal Meridien: modern and stylish, this 5 star hotel is well located with an excellent view of the Bund, the Pearl Tower, the People square and the Nanjing Pedestrian Road. www.starwoodhotels.com

Westin: rising above Shanghai’s historic and magnificent Bund waterfront, the hotel features 570 tastefully appointed guest rooms and suites, boasting inspirational art-décor interior and exciting skyline views over the Huangpu River. www.starwoodhotels.com

Howard Johnson: with an excellent location in the middle of Nanjing Road (a pedestrian walkway) and near to the Bund, the Howard Johnson offers a good value stay with clean and spacious room in the vibrant city of Shanghai. www.hojo.com

Hangzhou Amanfayun: A unique rural retreat on the outskirts of the historic city of Hangzhou, Amanfayun is set amongst temples and tea fields. With 42 dwellings each unique from the other, enjoy modern comforts without compromising the integrity of the dwellings. www.amanresorts.com

www.shangri-la.com/en/property/hangzhou/shangrila

Sofitel Hangzhou Westlake: a 5-star hotel with elegantly furnished rooms, located on the banks of West Lake and a stone’s throw from Xihutiandi. www.sofitel.com

Lakeview Hotel: a 4-star hotel, conveniently located just a few steps away from beautiful West Lake, with some rooms offering the gorgeous changing vista of the lake. www.lakeviwhotelhangzhou.cn

Wuzhen Tong An Guest House: designed in a typical Ming Qing dynasty styled architecture and centrally located, enjoy a close encounter with this Chinese water town.

Yellow Mountain International Hotel: a newly renovated 4-star hotel, located in the Tunxi Old town, 10 minutes walk to the Pedestrian Street and 20 minutes to the airport by car. www.ihuangshanhotel.com

Northern Sea Hotel: a 4-star hotel located near the Eastern Steps of Yellow Mountain. Catch the stunning view of endless sea of clouds which Huangshan is famous for. www.beihaihotel.com

Shanghai and

Eastern China PAGE 21


4 Days Water Cities – from wuzhen to hangzhou DAY 01 ARRIVE SHANGHAI / WUZHEN Fly to Shanghai. On arrival, drive about 2 hours to the water town - Fengjing depicting scenes typical of traditional Chinese ink paintings. Visit the museum dedicated to the “Cultural Revolution” and drive to Wuzhen, another famous water town. Spend the night at Tong An Guesthouse. (Lunch included)

DAY 02 WUZHEN / HANGZHOU Spend the day strolling through Wuzhen, touring the small museums and workshops. Try the typical cuisine of South China water towns. Drive to Hangzhou, known as “paradise on earth”. (Breakfast, lunch included)

DAY 03 HANGZHOU Spend dawn soaking in the ambience of the West Lake. You can choose to bike around and for lunch, enjoy a typical Zhejiang cuisine. Visit the famous Longjing tea plantation then head to Huqingyu Tang, a famous medicine shop founded in 1878. You will also have time to explore the area with many charmingly restored old houses. This evening, enjoy the famous outdoor show “Impression of West Lake” choreographed by the celebrated director Zhang Yi Mou of Olympic opening fame. (Breakfast, lunch included)

DAY 04 DEPART HANGZHOU / SHANGHAI Enjoy the morning at the scenic Xixi Wetland and visit a local family staying in a wooden house. Drive about 3 hours back to Shanghai for your flight home. (Breakfast, lunch included)

5 Days Yellow Mountain – picture perfect chinese landscape DAY 01 ARRIVE SHANGHAI / TUNXI Fly to Shanghai and connect to Tunxi. DAY 02 TUNXI / HUANGSHAN Drive about 2 hours to the base of Huangshan and ascend by cable car to spend the afternoon hiking on the ridges of Huangshan, the frequent subject of traditional Chinese paintings and poetries. (Breakfast, lunch included)

DAY 03 HUANGSHAN Rise early for a sunrise excursion before returning to the hotel for breakfast. You have a full day to enjoy the beauty of Huangshan before hiking down the mountain and arrive at the grand valley in about 2 hours.

DAY 04 HUANGSHAN / TUNXI / SHANGHAI Descend to the foot of Yellow Mountain by cable car and drive for about 2 hours to Hongcun, a medieval village and Xidi, a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Fly to Shanghai in the late evening. (Breakfast, lunch included)

DAY 05 DEPART SHANGHAI This morning is at leisure. Transfer to the airport for your flight home. (Breakfast included)

(Breakfast, lunch included)

Our Suggested Extensions: 3 Days Nanjing Capital of dynasties including Ming, Nanjing is where the father of modern China, Sun Yat Sen founded Republic of China. Discover its rich history and visit the famous Nanjing Yangtze River Bridge, Zhong Hua Gate, Nanjing Massacre memorial and Mausoleum among the impressive sights.

2 Days Jingdezhen Jingdezhen was synonymous with high quality pottery and ceramics throughout imperial China. It produces some of the most famous works that are on display in the major museums the world over. Visit some of the best known kilns as well as the nearby historical town of Wuyuan.

Shanghai and

Eastern China PAGE 23


6 Days Shanghai, Suzhou and Hangzhou – from historical chinese paradise to tomorrow world’s melting pot Shanghai and

Eastern China PAGE 24

DAY 01 ARRIVE SHANGHAI Fly to Shanghai. Find the perfect blend of East and West in this pulsating city! This afternoon, take a stroll along the famous Bund lined with colonial buildings overlooking Huangpu River. DAY 02 SHANGHAI Visit the landmark of Shanghai- Oriental Pearl TV Tower and the Shanghai History Museum. The afternoon is at leisure with the guide and driver at your disposal. We recommend visiting the French Concession region and Chunming Art Industrial Park. This evening, you may opt to enjoy an acrobatic show or the Shanghai circus. (Breakfast, lunch included)

DAY 03 SHANGHAI Explore People Square, home to modern Shanghai with impressive sky-scrappers and new edge edifice. Visit the Shanghai Museum and enjoy a Dim Sum lunch. Spend time in the Yuyuan Bazaar, an area with reconstructed Chinese style houses and a labyrinth of shops and tea houses. (Breakfast, lunch included)

DAY 04 SHANGHAI / SUZHOU / HANGZHOU Take a short drive to Suzhou (84 km). Stroll through the Humble Administrator’s Garden, a classic example of Chinese medieval gardens during the Ming period and Pan Gate, an ancient city gate with land and water entrances. In the afternoon, visit the Suzhou Museum and No.1 Silk Factory before driving to Hangzhou. (Breakfast, lunch included)

DAY 05 HANGZHOU There are many ways to spend the morning appreciating the beauty of the West Lake. You can choose to bike around and for lunch, enjoy a typical Zhejiang cuisine. Visit the famous Longjing tea plantation then head to Huqingyu Tang, a famous medicine shop. Explore the charming restored old houses and enjoy the famous outdoor show “Impressions of West Lake”. (Breakfast, lunch included)

DAY 06 DEPART HANGZHOU / SHANGHAI This morning is free at leisure. Drive about 3 hours to Shanghai for your flight home. (Breakfast included)


Guilin and Guizhou Guilin and

Guizhou PAGE 26

As the Chinese saying goes – “Guilin scenery tops the world”! Indeed with hundreds of spectacular limestone peaks jutting out of the emerald green countryside, Guilin is a truly beautiful place. While a cruise down the Li River offers stunning landscape, there are also hundreds of tourist boats. Venture out to the neighbouring valley and you can hike or bike through the countryside all by yourself. A 3 hour drive brings you to the most stunning rice terraces and you can stay in a village right in the midst of it! Guizhou, cut off from the rest of the world for centuries by its mountainous terrain, remains as one of China’s most isolated and unspoiled provinces. Celebrated for its hospitality, the province is a lively and visual mix of thirteen different ethnic groups. Many of these minorities continue an ancient way of life and time-honored traditions. Fortunately, Guizhou still remains a secret from the mass tourists. With a combination of trekking and driving, discover villages and gain insight on the interesting culture and life of these beautiful people in an equally beautiful land. One of the best ways to experience Guizhou is to catch a festival, there are many in a year. The villages are at its colorful best with locals dressed up in stunning costumes with brilliant display of their embroidery and silvers. Together with the music and dances, it is an amazing experience.

UNESCO sites

• South China Karst

Top 5 Experiences

< Hike or bike through verdant Guilin countryside amidst hundreds of giant limestone peaks.

< Stay in Li An Lodge and

enjoy the wonderful views of the surrounding rice terraces.

< Catch the Impression of Liu San Jie Show by Zhang Yi Mou in Yangshuo.

< Catch a festival in Guizhou.

< Watch the long-horn

Miao lady arrange her hair.


Our Recommended Hotels Guilin

Longsheng

HOMA Chateau: a Relais and Chateaux hotel, it is located midway between the cities of Guilin and Yangshuo. Situated in Yuzi Paradise Art Park, this boutique hotel marks a renaissance in Asian hospitality. Nestled between a limestone peak and a pine forest and featuring a unique sloping roof covered with grass, the hotel sits in harmony with its environment. Each of the 46 guest rooms is individually designed and no two are alike.

Li An Lodge: sitting on top of a mountain, bordering a local village and overlooking the magnificent rice terraces, this is a one-of-a-kind lodge, where Chinese tradition meets modern luxury. The lodge features 16 individually designed rooms that offer territorial views of the village or the rice terrace.

www.yuzile.com

Shangri-la: removed from the city centre, this is a newly opened 5-star hotel set by the Li River. Rooms are spacious and well appointed with all the desirable features one expects from a luxury hotel.

www.lianlodge.com

Ping An Hotel: surrounded by the famous Longji terraced rice paddies, the hotel has a rural flavor offering no-frills room, but with a priceless view.

Kaili

www.shangri-la.com

Sheraton Hotel: located on the banks of the Li River in the city centre, the hotel is conveniently located to explore the sights and rooms are well maintained.

Grand Dragon Hotel: a four star hotel located in the centre of the city and within walking distance to the Kaili museum. The rooms are clean and every room has complimentary internet connection.

www.sheraton.com

Guilin Bravo Hotel: a 4-star hotel that offers an excellent location within the city centre and walking distance to the major sights. Rooms are spacious, well appointed and offer view of the Banyan Lake. www.glbravohotel.com

Yangshou Yangshuo Resort: located in a secluded area by the Yulong River surrounded by beautiful views of the karst mountain, the 4-star resort offers spacious and well furnished rooms with a balcony opening to the tranquil water, peaks or stretches of paddy fields. www.yangshuoresort.com.cn

Yangshuo Regency Holiday Hotel: located at the entrance of the famous West Street, the hotel is well located as a base to explore the surrounding area. www.ys-holidayhotel.com

Magnolia Hotel: a tourist-class boutique hotel with friendly staff and modern rooms. It is located in the heart of Yangshou, right by the West Street with plenty of bars and restaurants. www.magnoliahotelyangshuo.com

Yangshuo Mountain Retreat: a charming tourist class countryside hotel located by the Yulong River with beautiful scenery, offering a quiet respite from the busy town. Rooms are clean and comfortable and come with a private balcony offering view of the river and beyond. www.yangshuomountainretreat.com

Guiyang Sheraton: a newly opened 5-star hotel located in Guiyang city center, within walking distance to the shopping centre, scenic Qianling Park and Jiaxiu Tower. www.starwoodhotels.com

Guilin and

Guizhou PAGE 27


4 Days Guilin Homa Chateau Escapade – nature, arts and luxury

Guilin and

Guizhou PAGE 28

DAY 01 ARRIVE GUILIN / HOMA CHATEAU Fly to Guilin. Arrive and transfer to Homa Chateau, nestled amidst the mountains. The modern resort is a state-of-art with modern décor enhanced by display of contemporary sculptures by artists from all over the world. Explore the resort and enjoy dinner by the lakeside. (Dinner included)

DAY 02 HOMA CHATEAU Enjoy a morning cruise down the picturesque Li River. Glide past hundreds of limestone peaks, luxuriant green padis and lovely villages. The cruise ends at Yangshuo and explore this 900 years old town. Tonight, catch the show “Impression of the River” choreographed by the famous movie director – Zhang Yimou.

DAY 03 HOMA CHATEAU Make a full day excursion to Longsheng showcasing nature’s beauty and colourful ethnic minority’s cultures and customs. After 3.5 hours drive, arrive at Longji, home to the Zhuang and Yao Minority tribes. Enjoy a hike around Pingan village and admire the spectacular terrace rice fields. (Breakfast, lunch included) DAY 04 DEPART GUILIN Transfer to the airport for your flight home. (Breakfast included)

(Breakfast, lunch included)

4 Days Guilin and Longsheng – where china is at its most beautiful DAY 01 ARRIVE GUILIN Fly to Guilin. Free at leisure to explore Banyan Lake or the night market. DAY 02 GUILIN / YANGSHUO Enjoy a morning cruise down the picturesque Li River. Glide past hundreds of limestone peaks, luxuriant green padis and lovely villages. The cruise ends at Yangshuo and explore this 900 years old town. Tonight, catch the show “Impression of the River” choreographed by the famous movie director – Zhang Yimou. (Breakfast, lunch on board included) DAY 03 YANGSHUO / LONGSHENG Longsheng is located in the mountainous region on the northeastern part of Guilin. After 3.5 hours drive on the scenic mountain route, you arrive at

Longji. Chance upon the local ladies dressed in their traditional costumes giving a demonstration on hair combing, singing or dancing. Enjoy a hike around Pingan village and admire the spectacular terrace rice fields. (Breakfast, lunch included) DAY 04 DEPART GUILIN Enjoy sunrise over the terraced rice fields if time permits. Drive about 2.5 hours to Guilin for your flight home. (Breakfast included)

4 Days Guilin Adventure – hiking and biking off the beaten path DAY 01 ARRIVE GUILIN Fly to Guilin. Free at leisure to explore Banyan Lake or the night market. DAY 02 GUILIN / YANGSHUO After a hearty breakfast, drive about an hour to Yangdi where you start an easy 6 hour trek taking in the river view and passing through local villages. Arrive at Xingping and drive to Yangshuo. Go on a walking orientation tour of this 900 years old town. Tonight, catch the “Impression of the River” show. (Breakfast, packed lunch included)

DAY 03 YANGSHUO Enjoy a full day hiking or biking along the picturesque Yulong River to Yulong Qiao (Dragon Bridge), taking in the most stunning view of the rice fields, limestone mountains and meandering rivers. (Breakfast, lunch included) DAY 04 DEPART GUILIN Drive about 2 hours to Guilin for your flight home. (Breakfast included)


5 Days Guizhou – insight into guizhou ethnic minorities DAY 01 ARRIVE KAILI Fly to Guiyang. Drive 2 hours to Kaili. Try the special sour fish soup tonight. (Dinner included)

DAY 02 KAILI – LANGDE Today, drive about 45 minutes to Xijiang Village that stands out with its distinctive architectural style. After lunch in Leishan town, continue on to Datang to see the short skirt Miao Village before ending the day’s visit to Langde which has some of the highest concentration of Miao villages. (Breakfast, lunch, dinner included)

DAY 03 KAILI – SHIDONG Drive about 1.5 hours to Shidong where you can witness various Miao dressing styles. Arrive at Kaitang Village and if you are lucky, catch the big market which the locals frequent. Lunch at a farm house and visit the silver workshop. In the afternoon, drop by a local primary school and join in an embroidery class. (Breakfast, lunch, dinner included)

DAY 04 KAILI / ANSHUN Drive to Anshun and visit a traditional Old Han Village in Jichang. The houses here still maintain the traditional Ming style architecture and many ladies are still dressed in the traditional Ming costume. Catch a Ground Opera which is unique to the area. (Breakfast, lunch, dinner included)

DAY 05 DEPART GUIYANG Drive back to Guiyang and enjoy a short city tour with a visit to the flower and bird market. Enjoy a vegetarian lunch at the Hongfu Temple before you catch your flight home. (Breakfast, lunch included) Note: Different villages have their own bazaars on different days. Your itinerary may be adjusted according to the local calendar.

Guilin and

Guizhou PAGE 29


5 Days Guizhou Festival Extravanganza – sharing a sister meal, celebrating double 9th festival or enjoying lusheng

Guilin and

Guizhou PAGE 30

DAY 01 ARRIVE GUIYANG Fly to Guiyang. Drive about 2 hours to Kaili. Try the special sour fish soup tonight. (Dinner included)

DAY 02 KAILI – FESTIVALS AT VILLAGES Be it the Sister Festival, Double Ninth Festival or Lusheng Festival, it will be a day of music and dance by locals dressed in their best with traditional costumes and stunning silver accessories.

DAY 04 KAILI – LANGDE Today, drive about 45 minutes to Leishan which has some of the highest concentration of Miao villages. With a combination of hiking and driving, visit Xijiang Village, the largest Miao Village in China with distinctive architectural style, a Paika Miao Village and a short skirt Miao Village. End the day at the beautiful village of Langde and be entertained by the locals with their singing and dancing. (Breakfast, lunch, dinner included)

(Breakfast, lunch, dinner included)

DAY 03 KAILI – SHIDONG OR ZHOUXI Depending on the festivities you are participating, take a day excursion to the village of Shidong or Zhouxi. Catch the local market that attracts villagers from the nearby village for their daily necessities to stunning silver jewelry. Lunch at a farm house and visit the silver workshop. In the afternoon, drop by a local primary school and go for an embroidery class at the Miao embroidery Museum. Return to Kaili and try a local traditional dinner.

DAY 05 DEPART GUIYANG Drive back to Guiyang for your flight home. (Breakfast included) Note: Different villages have their own bazaars on different days. Your itinerary may be adjusted according to the local calendar.

(Breakfast, lunch, dinner included)

7 Days Guizhou to Guilin Overland Adventure – through the time warp land of ethnic minorities DAY 01 ARRIVE GUIYANG Fly to Guiyang. Upon arrival, drive 2 hours to Kaili. (Dinner included)

DAY 02 KAILI / LANGDE / RONGJIANG Visit the Miao embroidery museum featuring thousands of magnificent embroidery pieces that the Miao people use in their daily life or on special occasions. Drive about 45 minutes along the Bala River to Langde, a Miao village with traditional wooden houses and waterwheels. Continue your journey to Datang and after lunch, continue to Rongjiang, visiting the Shui People en route. (Breakfast, lunch, dinner included)

DAY 04 ZHAOXING / SANJIANG Enjoy your morning at leisure and you can choose to take a hike to the nearby villages. Drive to Sanjiang to visit Chengyangqiao, a Dong village, featuring one of the most beautiful wind and rain bridges (FengYu Qiao). (Breakfast, lunch, dinner included)

DAY 05 SANJIANG / LONGSHENG / GUILIN Drive about 1.5 hours to Longsheng and arrive at Longji. Visit the Zhuang and Yao Minority tribes’ village and admire the spectacular terrace rice fields on a hiking tour at Ping’an village before continuing to Guilin. (Breakfast, lunch included)

DAY 03 RONGJIANG / CONGJIANG / ZHAOXING Go back in time with a visit to Basha, a small Miao village which bears little signs of modernization. Continue with a 2 hours drive to Zhaoxing, one of the largest Dong villages in the region. They are also known for their architecture, especially the drum towers and wind and rain bridges (FengYu Qiao). This evening, enjoy the famous “Grand Song” performance of Dong. (Breakfast, lunch, dinner included)

DAY 06 GUILIN / YANGSHUO Enjoy a morning cruise down the picturesque Li River. Glide past hundreds of limestone peaks, luxuriant green padis and lovely villages. The cruise ends at Yangshuo and explore this 900 years old town. Tonight, catch the show “Impression of the River” choreographed by the famous movie director – Zhang Yimou. (Breakfast, lunch included) DAY 07 DEPART GUILIN Transfer to Guilin for your flight home. (Breakfast included)


Shanxi, Henan and Shandong From the basin of the Yellow River in the province of now Henan, the Chinese civilization was born and it continues to prosper for the next 5000 years! Henan and the surrounding provinces of Shanxi and Shaanxi are now a treasure trove of excellent architectural sites many UNESCO listed World Heritage sites. It is a paradise for history lovers. Xian and Luoyang were capitals of China for the most number of dynasties. Xian is of course well known for its terra cotta soldiers while Luoyang for the Longmen grottoes and the famous Song Shan Shaolin Temple. In April, Luoyang has the added attraction of the beautiful Peonies in bloom. In neighboring Shanxi, travelers are surprised by the wealth of ancient and medieval Chinese heritage sites. In Datong, you will find the Yungang Grottoes listed by UNESCO as a World Heritage site for its fascinating Buddhist Arts. Pingyao is another UNESCO World Heritage site for its excellent and well preserved medieval architecture. Step back in time here!

UNESCO sites

• Pingyao • Longmen Grottoes • Yungang Grottoes • Yin Xu • Mt. Wutai • Dengfeng • Mt. Taishan • Confucius Temple & Home in Qufu

Top 5 Experiences

<

Cradle of China Civilization PAGE 31

Admiring the Buddhist arts in Longmen or Yungang Grottoes.

< Learning the

thousand year-old Chinese martial arts in Shaolin Temple.

< Soak in era bygone in the medieval town of Pingyao.

< Be amazed by

the Terra Cotta Soldiers.

< Catch the Peony

bloom in Luoyang.


Our Recommended Hotels Datong Cradle of China Civilization PAGE 32

Howard Johnson Jindi Plaza Datong: a newly opened 5-star hotel with excellent amenities, one of the best hotels in Datong.

Peony Hotel: a simple 4-star hotel well located in the city center catering to both leisure and business travelers. www.peonyhotel.net

www.plazajindidatong.hojochina.com

Holiday Inn Datong: a new local 5-star hotel located in the city business center with modern facilities. www.holidayinn.com

Jinan Crowne Plaza: a contemporary 5-star hotel conveniently located in central Jinan, close to Spring City Square and Daming Lake. Rooms are spacious and well-appointed. www.crowneplaza.com

Pingyao Jin’s Residence: located in the Pingyao old town, converted from a Qing Dynasty-era mansion into a hotel with a unique blend of traditional Chinese design and modern amenities. Each of the hotel’s 19 rooms and 2 luxury suites are unique. www.jingsresidence.com Yunjincheng Hotel: located in the famous Ming and Qing Street in Pingyao, the hotel offers a total of 80 well appointed rooms enclosed by 18 elegant and luxurious courtyards showcasing the architecture of China’s ancient houses.

Luoyang Huayang Plaza Hotel: located near to Huayang Square and the Peony Park, this is a 5-star hotel with modern design and decoration. www.huayanghotel.com

Sofitel Jinan Silver Plaza: a 5-star hotel located at the vibrant and exclusive Luoyuan Avenue, in the CBD of Jinan. www.sofitel.com

Shungeng Hillview Hotel: a 4-star hotel situated at the southern foot of Thousand Buddha Mountain. www.shungeng.com.cn

Qufu Queli Hotel: the best in Qufu, its traditional outlook and modern amenities within blends the hotel perfectly with its surroundings. www.quelihotel.com


5 Days Shanxi – UNESCO sites at datong and pingyao DAY 01 ARRIVE BEIJING / DATONG Fly to Beijing then drive 4 hours to Datong. (Dinner included)

DAY 02 DATONG Discover Yungang Grottoes, one of the top four Buddhist Grottoes in China containing over 50,000 Buddhist statues and stretches 1km east to west. Drive 1 hour to visit the Deshengbao Village surrounded by the Great Wall. (Breakfast, lunch, dinner included)

DAY 04 PINGYAO Stroll around the City Wall and observe the old architectural styles and town planning of imperial China. Observe the daily activities of the locals and visit interesting sites such as Ri Sheng Cheng- the world’s first Financial House, Biao Ju- a bodyguard services company and the Qiao Family Mansion. (Breakfast, lunch, dinner included)

DAY 05 DEPART PINGYAO Transfer to the Taiyuan airport for your flight home. (Breakfast included)

DAY 03 DATONG / TAIYUAN / PINGYAO Drive about 4 hours to Taiyuan. En route, visit Xuan Kong Si, a temple suspended over void and the Sakyamuni Wooden Pagoda. Another 1.5 hour drive brings you to Pingyao, a listed UNESCO World Heritage Site and one of the best preserved medieval townships in China. (Breakfast, lunch, dinner included)

6 Days Luoyang and Xian – cradle of chinese civilization DAY 01 ARRIVE LUOYANG Fly to Luoyang and transfer to your hotel. DAY 02 LUOYANG Developed by monks amidst the Songshan Mountain, visit the famous Shaolin Temple, home of the famous martial arts. Weave through the Forest of Pagodas and drive 1.5 hours to Gongyi to visit the Kang’s Manor before taking a 40 minutes drive back to Luoyang. (Breakfast, lunch included)

DAY 03 LUOYANG Visit the White Horse Temple, the very first temple in China where Buddhism was introduced from India and discover the UNESCO World Heritage site of Longmen Grottoes, one of the four most famous Buddhist grottoes in China. In the afternoon, enjoy peony flowers in bloom, a symbol of prosperity and nobility. (Blooming season begins around April) (Breakfast, lunch included)

DAY 04 LUOYANG / XIAN Take a bullet train ride to Xian (1.5 hours). Arrive in Xian and take a walk on the ancient city wall, exploring the winding alleys of the Muslim Quarter with its unique Great Mosque. Take some time for shopping at the bazaar. (Breakfast, lunch included)

DAY 05 XIAN Today, visit one of the greatest sights of China the Terra Cotta Warriors, thousands of life-sized soldiers, each with different expressions and horses, all companions for the burial of the first emperor of China - he is also builder of the Great Wall. Visit the Provincial History Museum. This evening, be treated to the spectacular Tang dynasty show with dinner. (Breakfast, lunch, dinner included)

DAY 06 DEPART XIAN Enjoy your morning at leisure then transfer to the airport for your flight home. (Breakfast included)

Cradle of China Civilization PAGE 33


5 Days Shandong – home of confucius DAY 01 ARRIVE JINAN Fly to Jinan and transfer to your hotel. Cradle of China Civilization PAGE 34

DAY 02 JINAN/TAI’AN/QUFU Drive to Tai’an in the morning and visit the UNESCO World Heritage site of Mount Taishan, considered as one of the five holiest mountains in China. Ascend the mountain by cable car and visit the 1000 years old Bixiaci, also known as the Azure Clouds Temple. You can opt to descend the mountain by walking (1.5 hours). En route, visit Dai temple before driving to Qufu (2 hours). (Breakfast, lunch included)

DAY 03 QUFU Immerse yourself in the teachings and life of Confucius. His widespread ideology is closely followed even till this day. Listed as a UNESCO World Heritage site, visit the Confucian Temple, the largest and earliest built in Qufu. The Confucian Mansion is a typical feudal aristocrat mansion while the Confucian Family Graveyard has a history of over 2340 years. (Breakfast, lunch included)

DAY 04 QUFU/JINAN Drive 2.5 hours back to Jinan. Admire the classic scene of delicate weeping willows and lotus filled Daming Lake. Enter the fairyland of Baotu Spring Park, reputed to be “the first spring under the heavens”. (Breakfast, lunch included)

DAY 05 DEPART JINAN Transfer to the airport for your flight home. (Breakfast included)


Hunan, Fujian and Guanzhou The capitals of China have always been in the north. Far from the political center, the history of the south has developed very differently and in particular played a significant role in the Chinese diaspora. Fujian is home to one of UNESCO World Heritage sites – the unique Hakka Houses. Beyond that, you will find the beautiful city of Xiamen, the historical city of Quanzhou and the lovely mountain retreat of Wuyi Shan.

Top 5 Experiences

<

PAGE 35

Admiring the unique round Hakka houses architecture in Fujian.

< Walking amongst the scenic sites of Zhangjiajie.

Just across the border from Hong Kong, Guangzhou too has its surprises. The unique architecture of the Diaolou in Kaiping has recently been listed by UNESCO as a World Heritage site.

< Learn about the local history

For pure natural beauty, Zhangjiajie in Hunan ranks equal with Guilin and Jiuzaigou.Many insist that it is here that the most recent box office hit Avator got its inspiration and one of the mountains has been renamed Avatar Hallelujah Mountain!

< Indulging in Wuyi Mountain

UNESCO sites

• Wulingyuan • Mt Wuyi • Kaiping Diaolou • Fujian Tulou • Danxia

Southern China

of the Chinese diaspora through the unique Diaolou architecture in Kaiping.

resort.

< Admiring the colonial

architecture in Xiamen Gulangyu or Guangzhou Shamien Island.


Our Recommended Hotels

Southern China PAGE 36

Xiamen

Zhangjiajie

Pan Pacific Xiamen: an international 5-star hotel, perfectly located in the heart of the financial districts near to major sights including the picturesque Yundang Lake and Gulangyu Island. Rooms are well appointed and offer magnificent views of the sea, lake and mountain.

Pullman Zhangjiajie: a 5-star hotel located at the hills facing the waters with well-appointed and comfortable rooms. Great views of the nearby mountain peaks on clear days.

www.panpacific.com

State Guest House Zhangjiajie: a local 5-star hotel located right in the scenic area within 300 meters distance to the main entrance of Wulingyuan. www.zjjgbhotel.com

Millennium Harbourview Hotel: 4 star hotel, conveniently located near the shopping area to feel the pulse of Xiamen. Friendly staffs and good quality rooms would ensure a pleasant stay for visitors. www.millenniumhotels.com

City Hotel: a good quality 4-star hotel situated in a quiet area with lots of greenery near to the major sights and 15 minutes walk to the Zhongshan Pedestrian walking street. Rooms are spacious and comfortably appointed.

www.pullmanhotels.com

Wuyi Mountain Yeohwa Resort: a 5-star hotel located in the Wuyishan National Tourist Resort Zone facing the scenic Dawang Peak and near to an 18-hole mountain golf course.

www.cityhotelxm.com

www.yeohwa-wy.com

Hakka House Area

Yuanhua International Hotel: a simple 4-star hotel facing Wuyishan scenic area and conveniently located.

Weiqunlou Inn: This cozy inn is converted from an original earth house and is located in Tianluokeng Tulou Cluster.

Guangzhou Shangri-la Hotel: a 5-star luxury hotel with panoramic view of the Pearl River. www.shangri-la.com

Pullman Guangzhou Baiyun Airport: located within Guangzhou airport complex, the 5-star hotel offers a good overnight stay for early morning flights out of Guangzhou. www.pullmanhotels.com

China Hotel (Marriott): a 5-star hotel under the Marriott chain, located in the city center near the tourist area â&#x20AC;&#x201C; Chenâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Clan, Yuexiu Park and Memorial of Sun Yet-Sen. www.marriott.com

White Swan Hotel: a 4-star hotel, located by the Shamien colonial area overlooking the famed Pearl River with adequately appointed rooms. www.whiteswanhotel.com


5 Days Picturisque Zhangjiajie Tour – a mini fairyland DAY 01 ARRIVE GUANGZHOU / ZHANGJIAJIE Fly to Guangzhou and transfer to Wulingyuan. DAY 02 ZHANGJIAJIE Take a cable car up to the mountain in the National Forest Park and begin your exploration of this scenic area. Visit the Yellow Stone Stronghold (six-wonder pavilion), a suspending scenic platform and get a bird’s eye view of the unique rock formations. Enjoy a walking tour along the winding road in the deep valley. (Breakfast, lunch, dinner included)

DAY 04 ZHANGJIAJIE / GUANGZHOU In the Yellow Dragon cave, discover long twisted roads surrounded by many stalagmites and stalactites. After lunch, visit the Tujia folk custom garden where you can see the houses of the Tujia people and have an insight of how they work. This evening transfer to the airport for your flight to Guangzhou. (Breakfast, lunch included)

DAY 05 DEPART GUANGZHOU Transfer to the airport for your flight home. (Breakfast included)

DAY 03 ZHANGJIAJIE Drive to Tianzi Mountain and catch a cable car to the western sea featuring hundreds of peaks. Visit the Tianzi Mountain also known as a miniature fairyland of bonsai and the He Long park. (Breakfast, lunch, dinner included)

4 Days Guangzhou and Kaiping – southern gate of china DAY 01 ARRIVE GUANGZHOU Fly to Guangzhou. Take a half day tour to the Chen Clan Academy located outside the west gate of Guangzhou City. Visit the Shamien Island, Mausoleum of the Nan Yue King with its museum and Qingping market in the afternoon.

DAY 03 GUANGZHOU This morning, visit the Liurong Temple, Memorial of Sun Yet-Sen and Yuexiu Park including the Five Rams Statue and Zhenhai Tower. Enjoy your afternoon at leisure. (Breakfast, lunch included)

(Lunch included)

DAY 02 GUANGZHOU Drive 1.5 hours to Kaiping – “beginning of peace” and have a full day excursion to Diaolou. The development of Kaiping Diaolou began from the period of the outbreak of the First Opium War. Wander through the Chikan old town and return to Guangzhou in the late afternoon.

DAY 04 DEPART GUANGZHOU Transfer to the airport for your flight home. (Breakfast included)

(Breakfast, lunch included)

4 Days Fujian Hakka Earth Houses – an architectural wonder DAY 01 ARRIVE XIAMEN Arrive in Xiamen and take a half day tour to the Gulangyu Island. Visit the Shuzhuang Garden and Piano Museum which displays classic famous pianos collected from all over the world. (Dinner included)

DAY 02 XIAMEN / TULOU AREA Engineered as a means to protect villagers against outside invasions, the famous Hakka Houses are built round or square, nestled together with high and thick walls. Enter Yongding, an area that has over 300 round houses and 4000 square houses and visit some of the popular earth houses. Spend the night in Weiqun Lou in Taixia Village to experience

the local life (or drive an hour to Xiayang and overnight in Hakka Hot Spring Resort) (Breakfast, lunch, dinner included)

DAY 03 TULOU AREA / XIAMEN Spend the morning visiting villages and their unique earth buildings at Hegui Lou and Changjiao ancient village before driving 3.5 hours back to Xiamen. In Xiamen, enjoy a half day city tour to the Jimei Schools and the beautiful Marathon Road. (Breakfast, lunch, dinner included)

DAY 04 DEPART XIAMEN Transfer to the airport for your flight home. (Breakfast included)

Southern China PAGE 37


7 Days Fujian-Hakka Houses and Quanzhou, Wuyishan â&#x20AC;&#x201C; exploring architectural and natural UNESCO heritage sites

Southern China

DAY 01 ARRIVE XIAMEN Arrive in Xiamen and take a half day tour to the Gulangyu Island. Visit the Shuzhuang Garden and Piano Museum which displays classic famous pianos collected from all over the world.

PAGE 38

(Dinner included)

DAY 02 XIAMEN / TULOU AREA Engineered as a means to protect villagers against outside invasions, the famous Hakka Houses are built round or square, nestled together with high and thick walls. Enter Yongding, an area that has over 300 round houses and 4000 square houses and visit some of the popular earth houses. Spend the night in Weiqun Lou in Taixia Village to experience the local life (or drive an hour to Xiayang and overnight in Hakka Hot Spring Resort) (Breakfast, lunch, dinner included)

DAY 03 TULOU AREA / XIAMEN Spend the morning visiting villages and their unique earth buildings at Hegui Lou and Changjiao ancient village before driving 3.5 hours back to Xiamen. In Xiamen, enjoy a half day city tour to the Jimei Schools and the beautiful Marathon Road.

to be one of the best preserved stone pagodas in China and the Maritime Museum. In the afternoon, drive back to Xiamen and catch your flight to Wuyishan. (Breakfast, lunch, dinner included)

DAY 05 WUYISHAN Spend a full day sightseeing at the Wuyishan National Park, a World Nature Heritage site. After lunch, cruise down the Nine-Curve Stream on a bamboo raft cruising. Free time to walk along the Song Dynasty Street in the evening. (Breakfast, lunch, dinner included)

DAY 06 WUYISHAN / XIAMEN Tour the Dahongpao Tea Plantation. Dahongpao (Big Red Robe) also known as the Emperor of Tea is a lightly fermented oolong tea growing around the Wuyi mountain rocks. Enjoy Wen Gong banquet for lunch with dishes made from ingredients from the mountain. This afternoon, transfer to the airport for your flight to Xiamen. (Breakfast, lunch, dinner included)

(Breakfast, lunch, dinner included)

DAY 04 XIAMEN / QUANZHOU / WUYISHAN Visit the Kaiyuan Temple, once the biggest temple in ancient China, the East and West Pagoda, said

DAY 07 DEPART XIAMEN Enjoy your morning free at leisure then transfer to the airport for your flight home. (Breakfast included)


Tibet and Qinghai Tibet has always captured the imagination of the most intrepid traveler seeking the ultimate Shangri-la. Its remote location of being hidden behind the Himalayas, the stunning Tibetan Plateau landscape and unique exotic culture indeed make it one of the most captivating places on earth! Lhasa, the capital offers many spectacular sites, the Potala Palace, the Jokhang Temple as well as opportunities for experiences like catching the monk debating, following the pilgrims on the Barkhor Circuit. Lhasa warrants a trip by itself and is also the best gateway to begin your Tibet adventure. Outside Lhasa, some of the worldâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s greatest journeys await. The overland journey right across the Tibetan Plateau and over the Himalayas into Nepal offers natural landscape par excellence and gets you right to the base camp of Everest. The train journey from Qinghai to Tibet is an engineering feat taking you through some impossible terrain and following the Old Tea-Horse trail from Yunnan to Tibet has to be a journey of a lifetime!

Top 5 Experiences Tibet

<

Browsing through the treasures in Potala Palace.

< Watching monks debating in Drepung.

< Come face to face with Mt Everest.

< Gazing across the Tibetan Plateau from the train.

< Following a

pilgrimâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s route. Traveling in Tibet can be rough and the high altitude is a concern. Our packages offer carefully chosen hotels and restaurants in the city, private vehicle and oxygen supply to make your adventure as comfortable as possible. Winter in Tibet: Tibet has always been one of the most stunning destinations in China if not on earth and winter in Tibet is even more special! The already outstanding landscape of the Himalayas and Tibetan plateau is coated in white. While Lhasa may be cold for most of us in winter, it is warm for the mountain nomads and thus they gather here meeting in Lhasa in their colorful best. This is the best season where you do not get the mass tourists like in summer.

UNESCO sites â&#x20AC;˘ Potala Palace

and

Qinghai PAGE 39


Our Recommended Hotels Lhasa Tibet and

Qinghai PAGE 40

St Regis: Opened end 2010, this is without doubt the most luxurious hotel in Lhasa city currently. With a superlative service and exquisitely styled and lavishly appointed guest rooms, it would ensure visitors a wonderful stay on the “roof of the world”. www.stregis.com

Brahmaputra Grand Hotel: located in the new town of Lhasa, the 5-star hotel combines traditional Tibetan architectural style with modern decorative and rooms are spacious and comfortable. It also houses a museum and numerous Tibetan artifacts. www.tibethotel.cn

Sheraton Four Points: ideally situated within 15 minutes walking distance to the Old Town, the 4-star hotel offers stylish western rooms and service is good. www.starwoodhotels.com

Shambhala: located in a traditional Tibetan courtyard house in a quiet alley of the Barkor Square in the Tibetan Old Town, the boutique hotel features strong local ethnic architecture and furnishing. Suitable for travellers who are seeking an authentic “Tibetan living experience”. www.houseofshambhala.com

Dhood Gu Hotel: a 3-star hotel located in the Tibetan Old Town and 100 meter from the famous Jokhang Temple. The hotel oozes with Tibetan character and rooms are adequately furnished. De Khang Hotel: a modern 3-star hotel with a hint of Tibetan decoration, located in the new section of Lhasa city.

Gyantze Gyantze Hotel: a 3-star hotel with western rooms and attached toilet with hot water.

Xigatze Xigatze Hotel: a 3-star hotel offering both Tibetan and western style rooms with attached toilet and hot shower.


5 Days Lhasa – window into tibet DAY 01 ARRIVE CHENGDU Fly to Chengdu. DAY 02 CHENGDU / LHASA Transfer to the airport for your flight to Lhasa. At 3500m, it is advisable to rest for the day for better acclimatization. (Breakfast included)

DAY 03 LHASA Explore Lhasa beginning with the UNESCO World Heritage site of the Potala Palace. Dominating the city, it is perhaps the most famous landmark of Tibet. Visit the Jokhang monastery and later roam through Barkhor, a bustling market in the heart of old Lhasa with its narrow streets.

DAY 04 LHASA Drive about 2.5 hours to Yamdrok Lake crossing high mountain passes (of nearly 5000m). Along the way, experience the rugged and spectacular landscape of Tibet. Return to Lhasa in the afternoon and visit Sera Monastery, which is one of the best-preserved monasteries in Tibet. Within its whitewashed walls and golden roofs, several hundred monks live and study. Catch the monks’ debating session (every afternoon except on Sat and Sun). (Breakfast, lunch included)

DAY 05 DEPART LHASA Transfer to the airport for your flight home. (Breakfast included)

(Breakfast, lunch included)

8 Days Lhasa, Gyantze and Xigatze – heart of tibet DAY 01 ARRIVE CHENGDU Fly to Chengdu. DAY 02 CHENGDU / LHASA Transfer to the airport for your flight to Lhasa. At 3500m, it is advisable to rest for the day for better acclimatization. DAY 03 LHASA Explore Lhasa beginning with the UNESCO World Heritage site of the Potala Palace. Dominating the city, it is perhaps the most famous landmark of Tibet. Visit the Jokhang monastery and later roam through Barkhor, a bustling market in the heart of old Lhasa with its narrow streets.

DAY 06 GYANTZE / XIGATZE This morning, visit Pelkor Chode Monastery and the Kumbum, an oversized chorten with over 100,000 Buddha images. Drive 2 hours to Xigatze and visit the impressive Tashilungpo Monastery, seat of Panchen Lama, second in order to Dalai Lama. (Breakfast, lunch included)

DAY 07 XIGATZE / LHASA Today, drive 4 hours back to Lhasa. En route, visit a local Tibetan village, to see their traditional tranquil lifestyle and a carpet factory. In Lhasa, you will have time to explore the Tibetan Museum or shop in the bazaar around Barkhor Circuit. (Breakfast, lunch included)

(Breakfast, lunch included)

DAY 04 LHASA Today, drive 2 hours to Ganden Monastery. Standing at 4500m, it commands a great view and provides an interesting short hike to the surrounding villages. Drive back to Lhasa to visit Sera Monastery, which is one of the best-preserved monasteries in Tibet. (Breakfast, packed lunch included)

DAY 05 LHASA / GYANTZE Experience the outstanding Tibetan landscape with a drive over 2 spectacular high passes - the Kampa La at 4750m and Karo La at 5050m. Pass through the beautiful turquoise lake of Yamdrok and cross endless rugged plateau with the snow-capped ranges of the Himalayas as the backdrop. Arrive Gyantze at 3950m in the late afternoon and enjoy a picnic lunch en route. (Breakfast, lunch included)

DAY 08 DEPART LHASA Transfer to the airport for your flight home. (Breakfast included)

Tibet and

Qinghai PAGE 41


9 Days Tibet with the Train Journey â&#x20AC;&#x201C; crossing the roof of the world DAY 01 ARRIVE CHENGDU Fly to Chengdu. Tibet and

Qinghai PAGE 42

DAY 02 CHENGDU / XINING Transfer to the airport for your flight to Xining. Starting from this capital of Qinghai province, settle into your cabin for your spectacular overnight train ride to Tibet. (Breakfast included)

DAY 06 LHASA / GYANTZE Experience the outstanding Tibetan landscape with a drive over 2 spectacular high passes of the Kampa La at 4750m and Karo La at 5050m. Pass through the beautiful turquoise lake of Yamdrok and cross endless rugged plateau with the snow-capped ranges of the Himalayas as the backdrop. Arrive Gyantze at 3950m in the late afternoon and enjoy a picnic lunch en route. (Breakfast, lunch included)

DAY 03 XINING / LHASA Enjoy the scenery onboard the train as it makes its way through northern Tibet. Arrive in Lhasa. At 3500m, it is advisable to rest for the day for better acclimatization. (Breakfast included)

DAY 04 LHASA Explore Lhasa beginning with the UNESCO World Heritage site of the Potala Palace. Dominating the city, it is perhaps the most famous landmark of Tibet. Visit the Jokhang monastery and later roam through Barkhor, a bustling market in the heart of old Lhasa with its narrow streets. (Breakfast, lunch included)

DAY 07 GYANTZE / XIGATZE This morning, visit Pelkor Chode Monastery and the Kumbum, an oversized chorten with over 100,000 Buddha images. Drive 2 hours to Xigatze and visit the impressive Tashilungpo Monastery, seat of Panchen Lama, second in order to Dalai Lama. (Breakfast, lunch included)

DAY 08 XIGATZE / LHASA Today, drive 4 hours back to Lhasa. En route, visit a local Tibetan village, to see their traditional tranquil lifestyle and a carpet factory. In Lhasa, you will have time to explore the Tibetan Museum or shop in the bazaar around Barkhor Circuit. (Breakfast, lunch included)

DAY 05 LHASA Today, drive 2 hours to Ganden Monastery. Standing at 4500m, it commands a great view and provides an interesting short hike to the surrounding villages. Drive back to Lhasa to visit Sera Monastery, which is one of the best-preserved monasteries in Tibet. (Breakfast, packed lunch included)

DAY 09 DEPART LHASA Transfer to the airport for your flight home. (Breakfast included)


11 Days Tibet Overland Adventure with Everest Base Camp – crossing the himalayas DAY 01 ARRIVE CHENGDU Fly to Chengdu. DAY 02 CHENGDU / LHASA Transfer to the airport for your flight to Lhasa. At 3500m, it is advisable to rest for the day for better acclimatization.

DAY 07 XIGATZE / XEGAR Today’s journey is the longest (taking up to 9 hours) and probably the most spectacular. You will cross Tsuo La Pass at 4500m and Gyatso La Pass at 5222m. If you are feeling energetic, make a detour to visit the Sakya Monastery. Arrive in Xegar at 4300m. (Breakfast, lunch included)

(Breakfast included)

DAY 03 LHASA Explore Lhasa beginning with the UNESCO World Heritage site of the Potala Palace. Dominating the city, it is perhaps the most famous landmark of Tibet. Visit the Jokhang monastery and later roam through Barkhor, a bustling market in the heart of old Lhasa with its narrow streets. (Breakfast, lunch included)

DAY 08 XEGAR / EVEREST BASE CAMP / XEGAR Today is perhaps the highlight of the trip as you come face to face with the world’s tallest mountain, Mt. Everest. Head off the main overland route and the road rises steeply up the foothills of the Himalaya to the Rongbuk Monastery at 5,030m. Spend a full day hiking up to Everest Base Camp. Return to Rongbuk and drive back to Xegar. (Breakfast, lunch included)

DAY 04 LHASA Today, drive 2 hours to Ganden Monastery. Standing at 4500m, it commands a great view and provides an interesting short hike to the surrounding villages. Drive back to Lhasa to visit Sera Monastery, which is one of the best-preserved monasteries in Tibet.

DAY 09 XEGAR / ZHANGMU Drive about 6 hours today, crossing from barren rugged landscape of Tibet to the mighty Himalayas. Arrive at Zhangmu at 2500m. (Breakfast, lunch included)

(Breakfast, packed lunch included)

DAY 05 LHASA / GYANTZE Experience the outstanding Tibetan landscape with a drive over 2 spectacular high passes of the Kampa La at 4750m and Karo La at 5050m. Pass through the beautiful turquoise lake of Yamdrok and cross endless rugged plateau with the snow-capped ranges of the Himalayas as the backdrop. Arrive Gyantze at 3950m in the late afternoon and enjoy a picnic lunch en route. (Breakfast, lunch included)

DAY 06 GYANTZE / XIGATZE This morning, visit Pelkor Chode Monastery and the Kumbum, an oversized chorten with over 100,000 Buddha images. Drive 2 hours to Xigatze and visit the impressive Tashilungpo Monastery, seat of Panchen Lama, second in order to Dalai Lama. (Breakfast, lunch included)

DAY 10 ZHANGMU / KATHMANDU Walk across the Friendship Bridge and you will arrive in Nepal. Another 6 hours drive brings you to Kathmandu, the exotic capital of Nepal. (Breakfast, lunch included)

DAY 11 DEPART KATHMANDU Transfer to the airport for your flight home. (Breakfast included)

Tibet and

Qinghai PAGE 43


Xinjiang and the Silk Road

Top 5 Experiences

For more than 2 millenniums, caravans along the Silk Road has traversed some of the world’s most extreme terrain and encountered remote and unique cultures. Today, you can retrace this ancient trade route on a remote and romantic journey.

<

One of our most popular routes takes you from the spectacular Buddhist grottoes in Dunhuang to the edge of the Taklamakan Desert, visiting the oasis town of Turphan to the snowy Tianshan Mountains. The highlight of the trip has to be the Sunday market in Kashgar.

< Catch the Sunday

To get off the beaten path, our Silk Road less traveled takes you right into the heart of the Taklamakan Desert with option to camp out and journey over the high Pamirs to the border with Pakistan at the Khunjerab Pass. You can also choose to travel right through the Taklamakan Desert on the Central Silk Road and unveil the many mysteries of this long lost kingdom. For the adventurous, our Xinjiang biking adventure ventures into the beautiful scenery of the northern part of this region.

Marvel at the fascinating murals in the Dunhuang Grottoes.

market in Kashgar.

< Gazing at the

perfect reflection of Mt Kongur and Muztagh Ata in the Karakul Lake.

< Meeting the nomads.

< Sunrise or sunset over the sand dunes.

Whichever journey you choose, you will encounter the colorful cultures of the ethnic minorities, Uygurs, Kazakhs and Tajiks which are as much a highlight as the gorgeous scenery en route and the amazing history of the area.

UNESCO sites

• Mogao Caves • Historic Centre of Macao

Xinjiang and the Silk Road PAGE 45


Our Recommended Hotels

Xinjiang Xinjiang and and the the Silk Silk Road Road PAGE PAGE 46 46

Dunhuang

Tashkurghan

Silk Road Dunhuang Hotel: Situated against the backdrop of the picturesque Mingsha Sand Dunes, the hotel captures the spirit of the Tang Dynasty with its unique architectural design.

Crown Inn: a simple and clean small hotel offering stunning panoramic views of the Pamir Mountains. www.crowninntashkorgan.com

www.dunhuangresort.com

Korla Urumqi Sheraton Urumqi Hotel: rated as the best 5-star hotel in Urumqi, hotel rooms come with scenic views of snow-capped mountains. www.starwoodhotels.com

Hoi Tak Hotel: a 5-star hotel situated in the business district with indoor swimming pool. Some rooms offer panoramic view of the famous snowcapped Tianshan Mountains.

Loulan Hotel: a good 3-star hotel located at the east side of Central Square featuring 200 rooms with exquisite design.

Kucha Kucha Hotel: a good 3-star hotel offering nice surroundings with a large courtyard. Rooms are simple and clean.

www.hoitakhotel.com

Bingtuan Grand Hotel: a newly opened 4-star hotel in 2011. Mirage Hotel: 4-star standard rooms located in the heart of the city and managed by Singaporeâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s La Nice Hotels & Resorts. www.mirage-hotel.cn

Turpan Tuha Petroleum Hotel: a 4-star hotel (best available in Turpan) with large rooms and internet access.

Kashgar Tianyuan International Hotel: a 4-star hotel located in Kashgar city with large rooms. Walking distance to the Peopleâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Park and famous Kashgar Old Town. Barony Hotel: a very good 3-star hotel located near the Etigar Mosque. www.baronytxnhotels.com

Khotan Wenzhou Hotel: a 3-star basic accommodation.

Yining Yili Grand Hotel: a 4-star hotel (best available in Yining) located in the centre of the city, walking distance to the Yili River.


6 Days Silk Road Express – the highpoints of the ancient trade route DAY 01 ARRIVE CHENGDU / URUMQI Fly to Urumqi. DAY 02 URUMQI / TURPAN At the Xinjiang Regional Museum, learn about the ethnic blend of this region through historical relics and local folk customs. In the afternoon, drive to Turpan and visit the Jiaohe Ruins with a history of over 2500 years. (Breakfast, lunch, dinner included)

DAY 03 TURPAN Begin your exploration with the Emin Minaret and Karez underground irrigation system. Visit the Bezeklik Caves and the Flaming Mountain of the Monkey God fame. A means of transportation in the trading days, take a donkey cart through the ruins of Gao Chang. Enjoy a local dinner at the Grape Valley. (Breakfast, lunch, dinner include)

DAY 04 TURPAN / HEAVENLY LAKE Drive 3 hours to Tian Chi (Heavenly Lake). With scenery reminiscent of Switzerland, the alpine pastures around the lake are home to the grazing horses of the yurt-dwelling Kazakhs. You have the option of staying the night in a yurt or returning to Urumqi for the night. (Breakfast, lunch, dinner include)

DAY 05 HEAVENLY LAKE / URUMQI Choose to hike around Tian Chi then return to Urumqi in the late afternoon or spend the day shopping in the largest bazaar in Urumqi, the Great Bazaar. (Breakfast, Lunch included)

DAY 06 DEPART URUMQI Transfer to the airport for your flight home. (Breakfast included)

7 Days Southern Silk Road – unveiling the ancient mystery DAY 01 ARRIVE CHENGDU / URUMQI Fly to Urumqi.

some of the most impressive Buddhist art in Central Asia. (Breakfast, lunch, dinner included)

DAY 02 URUMQI / TURPAN Drive 3 hours to Turpan, an oasis town 154 meters below sea level and visit the Jiaohe Ruins. After lunch, go to the Flaming Mountain of the Monkey King fame, the ruins of Gao Chang and the Grape Valley. Tonight, enjoy dinner under the grape tree in a farm house.

DAY 05 KUCHA / KASHGAR Fly to Kashgar, an oasis in the hostile Taklamakan Desert and enjoy a walking tour to the Old Town area to see the local life of Uigur people and the handicraft street. Enjoy dinner with a local family in their house.

(Breakfast, lunch, dinner included)

(Breakfast, lunch, dinner included)

DAY 03 TURPAN / KORLA Drive 6 hours to Korla, en route visit the Bosten Lake- the biggest freshwater lake in Xinjiang. A 1.5 hour drive away, visit the Lopnur Village believed to be the descendants of the Loulan people. (Breakfast, lunch, dinner included)

DAY 06 KASHGAR / URUMQI Today, visit the outstanding Sunday market, the biggest in Asia. In the afternoon, explore the Yusuf Has Hajip Mazar and Kashgar Bazaar. After dinner, catch your flight to Urumqi.

DAY 04 KORLA / KUCHA Drive 4 hours to Kucha, a quaint oasis town once the center of a Buddhist civilization in the Tarim Basin. Visit the Kizil Grotto Temples, which once contained

DAY 07 DEPART URUMQI Transfer to the airport for your fight home.

(Breakfast, lunch included)

(Breakfast included)

8 Days Xinjiang Biking Adventure – silk road on 2 wheels DAY 01 ARRIVE CHENGDU / URUMQI Fly to Urumqi.

DAY 03 TURPAN / URUMQI Today, bike around Turpan to the famous Grape Valley and Jiao He Ruins before driving back to Urumqi.

DAY 02 URUMQI / TURPAN In the morning, drive 1 hour to Dabancheng. From here, enjoy 2.5 hours of biking in the beautiful natural scenery. Thereafter, drive to Turpan and tour its bazaar, Old Town and mosques.

(Breakfast, lunch included)

(Breakfast, lunch, dinner included)

DAY 04 URUMQI / YINING This morning, fly to Yining, bike in the village alleyways, enjoy the local Uighur atmosphere at the beautiful old villages and visit a local Uyghur family’s apple garden. (Breakfast, lunch, dinner included)

Xinjiang and the Silk Road PAGE 47


Xinjiang and the Silk Road PAGE 48

DAY 05 YINING Enjoy biking and horse riding around the Sairam lake.Indulge in the breadthtaking scenery of pine trees, meadows and stupendous mountains. Visit a nomadic Kazak family in their felt yurt and tonight you have the choice of spending the night at a guest house by the lake or drive back to town. (Breakfast, lunch, dinner included)

DAY 06 YINING If you stay by the lake, wake up early to catch sunrise by the lake. After breakfast, drive to the Chapchal Xibo Autonomous County. In the afternoon, bike around 20km along the Yili River near the Xibo village. Enjoy dinner with a local Uygur family. Return to Yining for the night.

DAY 07 YINING / URUMQI This morning, fly to Urumqi. In the afternoon, you have time to shop at the bazaar or you can choose to visit the Regional Museum. Tonight, enjoy dinner with Uighur dancing, as well as a foot massage! (Breakfast, dinner included) DAY 08 DEPART URUMQI Transfer to the airport for your flight home. (Breakfast included)

(Breakfast, lunch, dinner included)

9 Days Silk Road-Dunhuang to Kashgar with Xian option â&#x20AC;&#x201C; retracing the footsteps towards china ancient last frontier DAY 01 ARRIVE CHENGDU Fly to Chengdu. DAY 02 CHENGDU / DUNHUANG Fly to Dunhuang and after a short rest, catch sunset at Mingsha Shan (Singing Sands Mountain), named after the natural phenomenon. Visit the Crescent Moon Lake in the Gobi Desert and enjoy dinner by the dunes. (Breakfast, dinner included)

DAY 03 DUNHUANG / TURPAN Today, visit the UNESCO-listed Mogao Cave site, with its thousands of caves, each holding exquisite Buddhist murals. At an imitation Song dynasty city, go back in ancient times and indulge in the stories at the Chinese bar, tea houses and stores. After dinner, drive to Liuyuan to board the overnight train (soft sleeper) to Turpan. Train ride is about 10 hours. (Breakfast, lunch, dinner included)

DAY 04 TURPAN Arrive at Turpan train station at around 6am and begin your exploration with the Flaming Mountain of Monkey God fame, the ruins of Gao Chang and the Bezeklik Caves. After lunch, have a short siesta before continuing to tour the Emin Minaret, the Karez underground irrigation system and Turpan Museum.

DAY 06 URUMQI / KASHGAR Drive 3 hours to Tian Chi (Heavenly Lake). With scenery reminiscent of Switzerland, the alpine pastures around the lake are home to the grazing horses of the yurt-dwelling Kazakhs. Return to Urumqi in the afternoon to visit the Xinjiang Museum before flying to Kashgar. (Breakfast, lunch included)

DAY 07 KASHGAR Kashgar is an oasis in the hostile Taklamakan Desert. As it was 2,000 years ago, it is a cultural and commercial crossroad. Visit the Sunday market and see locals trading livestock and daily necessities. In the afternoon, visit the Yusuf Has Hajip Mazar and the handicraft street. Tonight, dine with a local family in their house. (Breakfast, lunch, dinner included)

DAY 08 KASHGAR / URUMQI Take a walking tour of the old town and visit a Uygur family. In the afternoon, visit the Apak Hoja Tomb and the local bazaar before transferring to the airport for your flight to Urumqi. (Breakfast, lunch included)

DAY 09 DEPART URUMQI Transfer to the airport for your fight home. (Breakfast included)

(Breakfast, lunch included)

DAY 05 TURPAN / URUMQI Visit the Jiaohe Ruins with a history of over 2500 years and the Grape Valley. Enjoy lunch with a local family. Drive about 3 hours to Urumqi and along this scenic highway, see the Gobi Desert, Windmill Hydro plan and ruins. Arrive in Urumqi in the evening and you will have time to explore the bazaar. (Breakfast, lunch included)

Xian Option: Begin your Silk Road journey in Xian and continue to Dunhuang.


10 Days Silk Road Less Traveled â&#x20AC;&#x201C; adventure through the taklamakan and pamir DAY 01 ARRIVE CHENGDU / URUMQI Fly to Urumqi. DAY 02 URUMQI / KHOTAN At the Xinjiang Regional Museum, learn about the ethnic blend of this region through historical relics and local folk customs. After lunch, you have time for shopping at the great bazaar. Fly to Khotan.

DAY 06 KASHGAR / KARAKUL LAKE This morning, visit the Sunday market then drive along the famous Karakorum highway for 4.5 hours. Pass by Mahmud Kashgary tomb then arrive at Karakul Lake, flanked by beautiful snow capped mountains. Stay overnight in the yurt for the adventurous or a hotel in Tashkurghan. (Breakfast, lunch, dinner included)

(Breakfast, lunch, dinner included)

DAY 03 KHOTAN / DESERT Today is a highlight as you travel deep into the seemingly endless desert. Drive one hour to the edge of the Taklamakan Desert and then hop onto a camel! Camp overnight in the desert and you can begin to appreciate your relationship with the vast and uncompromising wilderness. (Breakfast, packed lunch, dinner included)

DAY 07 KARAKUL LAKE / KHUNJERAB PASS / TASHKURGHAN Enjoy breakfast by the Lake and a hike in the morning. Drive 1.5 hour to Tashkurghan to visit the Stone City. Continue another 2 hours drive to the Khunjerab Pass (4693 m), which is said to be the highest border crossing in the world between Pakistan and China. Return to Tashkurghan for the night. (Breakfast, lunch included)

DAY 04 RAWAK RUINS / KHOTAN Continue your camel ride to visit the ruins of the Rawak Temple. Return to Khotan for a short rest then continue your visit to the Malika-awat Ruins and Hetian Jade factory. Enjoy dinner at the orchard tonight. (Breakfast, lunch, dinner included)

DAY 05 KHOTAN / KASHGAR Prepare for a long drive of 7 hours along the southern rim of the Taklamakan Desert to Kashgar. En route, visit the magnificent mausoleum of Yarkant King and the old streets of Yarkant city. (Breakfast, lunch, dinner included)

DAY 08 TASHKURGHAN / KASHGAR Drive 6 hours to Kashgar then enjoy your day free at leisure. (Breakfast, lunch included)

DAY 09 KASHGAR / URUMQI This morning, take a city tour of the Old Town and Handicraft Street of Kashgar. After lunch, fly back to Urumqi. (Breakfast, lunch included)

DAY 10 DEPART URUMQI Transfer to the airport for your flight home. (Breakfast included)

Xinjiang and the Silk Road PAGE 49


Northeast China Northeast China PAGE 50

Tucked in the remote northeast corner of China, Heilongjiang is a place of climatic extreme which they make full use of. Every year from late December to early February, the capital city Harbin host one of the world’s most fascinating winter wonderlands! The Harbin Snow and Ice festival has gone from strength to strength and now ranks as one of the top display of its kind in the world. In the neighboring province of Jilin, winter landscape can be enjoyed through its “Wusong”. When winter approaches, branches of the willow trees are covered with glittery ice, appearing crystallized.

Top 3 Experiences

< Marvel at the ice

sculpture carvings at the Snow and Ice Festival in Harbin.

< See the Siberian Tiger in Harbin.

< Enjoy the “Wusong” in Jilin.

UNESCO sites • Ming & Qing Palaces in Beijing & Shenyang • Koguryo ruins

Our Recommended Hotels Harbin

Jilin

Shangri-la Hotel: a 5-star hotel located by the Songhua River with a great view of The Harbin Snow and Ice festival from a distance.

Century Hotel: the best 5-star hotel in Jilin located just eight minutes by car from the railway station and 20 minutes from the airport. Each room has free internet access.

www.shangri-la.com

www.centuryhotel.com.cn

Friendship Palace Hotel: a 4-star hotel within walking distance to the Central Street. www.hrbyyg.com

Crystal Hotel: the only 4-star hotel in Jilin, it is located by the Songhua River. Each room has free internet access. www.crystal-hotel.com.cn


4 Days Harbin – ice wonderland DAY 01 ARRIVE HARBIN Fly to Harbin. DAY 02 HARBIN This morning, take a city tour of the Russian influenced town covering the St. Sophia Church and Stalin Park. Lunch at a Russian style restaurant then take a leisurely stroll down Central Street. After a hotpot dinner, visit the colourful Ice Lantern Festival in Zhaolin Park. (Breakfast, lunch included)

DAY 03 HARBIN Marvel at the snow sculptures on Sun Island, followed by a visit to the Siberian Tiger Enclosure

and Provincial Museum. This evening, experience the highlight of your trip at the World of Snow and Ice. With a variety of themes and ice sculptures of various sizes, you can also take part in many ice related activities. (Breakfast, lunch included)

DAY 04 DEPART HARBIN Enjoy your morning at leisure then transfer to the airport for your flight home. For those taking the night flight, enjoy an optional half day tour to visit the Harbin Museum and Guogeli Street. (Breakfast included)

5 Days Harbin and Jilin – manmade and natural winter splendours DAY 01 ARRIVE HARBIN Fly to Harbin. DAY 02 HARBIN This morning, take a city tour of the Russian influenced town covering the St. Sophia Church and Stalin Park. Lunch at a Russian style restaurant then take a leisurely stroll down Central Street. After a hotpot dinner, visit the World of Snow and Ice. With a variety of themes and ice sculptures of various sizes, you can also take part in many ice related activities. (Breakfast, lunch, dinner included)

DAY 04 JILIN Wake up early this morning to see the glittery natural wonder- “Wusong” on Wusong Island. You also have the chance to experience the Manchu culture and enjoy a traditional Manchu lunch. After lunch, drive 1 hour to the Korea folk Village, or visit the Jilin Museum. Note: Wusong is a natural phenomenon and is subject to weather and humidity condition. (Breakfast, lunch included)

DAY 05 DEPART JILIN Transfer to the airport for your flight home. (Breakfast included)

DAY 03 HARBIN / JILIN Marvel at the snow sculptures on Sun Island, followed by a visit to the Siberian Tiger Enclosure. After lunch, drive 4 hours to Jilin. (Breakfast, lunch included)

Our Suggested Extensions: Club Med Yabuli Ski Resort A land transfer from Harbin brings you to Club Med China’s first premium resort, located in a national park at an altitude of 470m, offering an all inclusive snow holiday. It is a ski in, ski out resort and boasts the longest ski slope in Asia with over 30km of snow trails for all skill levels. www.en.clubmedyabuli.com

Northeast China PAGE 51


Inner Mongolia Inner Mongolia PAGE 52

Endless steppes, big open sky, Gobi Desert…. Mongolia is a dream come true for anyone looking for the vast open power of nature! This is also the land of Genghis Khan and where the mysterious Lama religion dominates.

Top 3 Experiences

< Spending a night in a Mongolian yurt on a vast steppe.

< Watch a Mongolian cultural show.

Ride a horse through the grassland, stay in a traditional Mongolian yurt, and explore one of the world’s harshest deserts….

< Learn the stories revolving around Genghis Khan.

Our Recommended Hotels Hohhot

Gegentala Grassland

Hailiang Plaza Hotel: a newly opened 4-star hotel with good amenities, one of the best hotels in Hohhot. www.hailianghotel.com

Deluxe Mongolia Tent: made of brick and stone with private toilet and shower room. No aircondition as it is cool at night.

Inner Mongolia Jinjiang International Hotel: a new local 5-star hotel located in the city centre with spacious and well-equipped rooms. www.inm.jinjianghotels.com

Ordos Ordos Hotel: a 4-star hotel with clean rooms and conveniently located. www.erduoshotel.com.cn

Ordos Tieniu Air China Hotel: a new 5-star hotel which is the best available in Ordos. www.tieniuhotel.com

5 Days Inner Mongolia – grassland, desert and manchu culture DAY0 1 ARRIVE BEIJING / HOHHOT Fly to Hohhot. DAY 02 HOHHOT Drive 2.5 hours to the Xilamuren Grassland and be greeted by the hospitable locals with homemade wine. After lunch, enjoy Mongolian style wrestling and horse racing. In the afternoon, you have a choice of the below options: • Route 1 – Horse riding to the Aobao (ger tent) • Route 2 – 3 hours horse riding to visit the herdsman and a natural preservation zone Overnight in the deluxe Mongolian tent and join in the campfire dancing with the locals. (Breakfast, lunch, dinner included)

DAY 03 HOHHOT / ORDOS Drive 4 hours to the third biggest desert in ChinaKubuqi Desert. En route pass the Yellow River and the biggest firepower house in Asia-Daqi powerhouse. Have fun and enjoy a variety of desert activities such as camel riding, sand sliding or motorbike riding. Drive 1 hour to Ordos. (Breakfast, lunch, dinner included)

DAY 04 ORDOS / HOHHOT Learn about Genghis Khan and his empire at his mausoleum then drive back to Hohhot in the afternoon. Visit the Inner Mongolia museum. (Breakfast, lunch, dinner included) DAY 05 DEPART HOHHOT Transfer to the airport for your flight home. (Breakfast included)


Singapore #04-20/21, Tanglin Shopping Centre 19 Tanglin Road Singapore 247909 Tel: (65) 6334 6120 Fax: (65) 6337 4166 enquiries@countryholidays.com.sg www.countryholidays.com.sg Country Holidays @ American Club 10 Claymore Hill Singapore 229573 Tel: (65) 6735 1033 Fax: (65) 6735 8500 traveldesk@amclub.org.sg

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