Asia

Great Chinese Travel

Our Great China trip combines two magnificent experiences: Tibet and the Yangtze River. Tibet, with the capital Lhasa, perched high in the Himalayas, has been inaccessible to most people for centuries. Then slowly gliding along the Yangtze River is a nature experience far beyond the ordinary. These are breathtaking moments as the ship sails through the mighty and narrow passages of the Three Gorges. Then add to these experiences the amazing terracotta army in the imperial city of Xi’an, hiking on the Great Wall of China, historical experiences in the Forbidden City in Beijing, acrobatics and shopping in the bustling world city of Shanghai, and you get a tour that offers experiences for all senses!

Great Chinese Travel 2

Day 1: Travel to China
Flights to China’s capital Beijing. Meals are included on board the long-haul flight.

Day 2: Beijing
Arrival in Beijing where we meet our Swedish-speaking tour guide. We head into the city center and begin with a visit to Tiananmen Square, a place where you can feel the wings of modern Chinese history. Here is Mao Zedong’s mausoleum with “The Great helmsman” on lit de parade, as well as the Great Hall of the People, from which this vast land is ruled. After an orientation tour of the square, we check in at our hotel for some relaxation. In the evening we gather for a welcome dinner. Overnight in Beijing. (Lunch and dinner)

Day 3: Beijing
Today it will be a full day excursion in Beijing’s surroundings. At a factory, we get to follow the production process of cloisonné, this for Beijing so typical enamelling crafts, where a copper object is coated with enamel in beautiful patterns and colors. On the Way of the Spirits, we walk slowly along a processional street lined with beautiful marble statues depicting officials, the military, elephants and camels. This was the processional route on which the emperors’ bodies were brought to the final rest. Gradually we reach the scenically located Minggravarna, which is located among the mountains and is surrounded by water, completely according to feng shui principles. The journey continues north and up among the mountains. Suddenly, the Great Wall of China appears like a meandering dragon in the landscape! More than six hundred miles long, from the Yellow Sea to the Gobi Desert, it follows the steep ridges. Finally it’s time for us to hike the wall! In the evening, dinner is served where Peking duck is included in the menu. Overnight in Beijing. (Breakfast, lunch and dinner)

Day 4: Beijing – Xi´an The
day begins with a visit to Beihai Park. The park is well visited by Beijingers, especially in the mornings. Here you do your gymnastics and hear the latest gossip. Then we continue to the hutongs where we travel in a bicycle rickshaw through old Beijing. Lunch is served at the home of a Chinese family. In the afternoon we visit the Forbidden City and hear hair-raising stories about the time when the emperors resided here with their eunuchs and concubines. In the evening, our journey continues by plane to the ancient imperial city of Xi´an. Overnight in Xi´an. (Breakfast and lunch)

Day 5: Xi’an
We spend the whole day in Xi´an and its surroundings. We first visit the Great Wild Goose Pagoda, which was built as early as the 6th century in connection with the arrival of Buddhism in China. Xi´an is known for its beautiful works in jade stone and we visit a jade carving to admire this beautiful craft. The rest of the day is dedicated to the famous terracotta army. This army would protect China’s first emperor after his death. The evening also offers great experiences as we are served jiaozi which consists of delicious dumplings with a variety of fillings. In connection with this, we also see a song and dance performance dating from the Tang Dynasty. Overnight in Xi´an. (Breakfast and lunch)

Day 6: Xi’an – Lhasa
In the morning we fly to Lhasa. Upon arrival, the rest of the day is free for acclimatization to the high altitude. Overnight in Lhasa. (Breakfast)

Day 7: Lhasa
We begin our visit to Lhasa with a visit to Tibet’s most important shrine, Jokhang. The temple is Lhasa’s oldest building. Then we walk the Barkhorkoran, the pilgrimage route that runs around the temple. In the afternoon we head to the famous Potala Palace, which the Dalai Lama once used as his winter palace. Overnight in Lhasa (Breakfast and lunch)

Day 8: Lhasa – Yamdrok Tso – Lhasa
By bus we follow the old trade route between Lhasa and Gyantse. The landscape is magnificent and light and shadow play over the mountains that surround us in all directions. From the Kambala Pass at 4,990 meters altitude, we have a magnificent view of the sacred lake Yamdrok Yamtso. Back in Lhasa we see the Tibetan Museum with its fine collections of local objects. Overnight in Lhasa. (Breakfast and lunch)

Day 9: Lhasa
In the morning we pay a visit to the Dalai Lama’s former summer palace, Norbulingka. In the afternoon we visit the Sera Monastery. Overnight in Lhasa. (Breakfast and lunch)

Day 10: Lhasa – Chongqing
We fly to Chongqing via Chengdu. After arriving in the large industrial city of Chongqing, we take a city tour. In the evening we start the cruise on the Yangtze. Overnight on board the boat. (Breakfast)

Day 11 – 12: Cruise on the Yangtze
For two days we will now do a cruise on the Yangtze, the world’s third largest river. Traveling on the Yangtze is a nature experience that few. The river meanders between high mountains and narrow passages. The journey begins in a fertile valley and soon we pass the village of Fengdu, the “ghost village”, with its many temples filled with statues of demons and evil spirits. The climax of the journey is reached when we go through the famous narrow passages – The three gorges. The first gorge, Qutang Gorge, is breathtakingly beautiful. The passage is short, only eight kilometers long, but it is so narrow that the masses of water are forced forward with violent force. The next gorge The Witch Gorge, Wuxia Gorge is 40 kilometers long. On both sides, we are surrounded by over 1,000 meters high mountain peaks that tower like massive walls around our cruise ship. The third of the huge gorges, Xiling Gorge is also the longest, about 70 kilometers long. At the end of this gorge, China’s largest dam facility, the Three Gorge Dam, has been built. Two kilometers wide and with a dam height of 185 meters creates enormous amounts of hydropower, something that is much needed in this huge country, with its energy shortage! After a few more hours of driving, we reach the Gezhouba Dam, and now the river changes character, it flows wide and winding with vast sandbanks. Here the ship is locked down to a lower water level. Overnight stays on board the boat. (Breakfast, lunch and dinner)

Day 13: Yichang – Shanghai
In the morning we reach Yichang, and here ends our cruise. Of course we visit the world famous dam project at Sandouping. It is the world’s largest dam and produces one – ninth of China’s energy needs. Then we fly to Shanghai. Overnight in Shanghai. (Breakfast and lunch)

Day 14: Shanghai
In the morning we head to Shanghai’s financial district Pudong east of the Huangpu River which flows through the center of Shanghai. Here we go up to China’s tallest skyscraper Shanghai Tower, from where you get a fantastic panoramic view of the river and the city. Then we pay a visit to the Shanghai Museum, with world-class collections. We continue to Chenghuangmiao, Shanghai’s oldest district, where we walk through Yu Yuan Garden, one of China’s premier classical gardens. After lunch, take time to explore the Nanjing Lu shopping street, as well as The Bund Boardwalk. In the evening we gather to enjoy a heartbreaking acrobatic performance! Overnight in Shanghai. (Breakfast, lunch and dinner)

Day 15: Return from Shanghai
Transfer to the airport and flight to the boarding place. Meals are included on board the long-haul flight. (Breakfast)

Great Chinese Travel