Experience the treasures of China both old and new on our China tours. Our itinerary unveils the very best of this vast country, weaving its most wonderful sights, cultural experiences, and magical scenery with luxury hotels and imaginatively crafted itineraries to create an unforgetable vacation. Stride along the Great Wall from Beijing, soak in exhilarating Shanghai, and see the Terracotta Warriors standing guard in Xian, combining them with the mystical landscapes of Guilin and a stop in pulsating Hong Kong.
Excitement fills the air as we board the international flight to Beijing. As the plane crosses the International Date Line we spend the night aboard.
Touch down in the capital city of China and greet our local guide in the arrivals hall. Transfer to our luxury hotel where we can unwind and relax for our full day of sightseeing tomorrow.
Today, we start our Beijing Capital tour with Qianmen Street. Qianmen Street was a commercial and entertainment hub due to its convenient location, connecting the Imperial Palace with other communities in Beijing. In the run-up to the 2008 Olympics, the street underwent a rejuvenation to restore the streetscape to that of the early 20th. A visit to Tiananmen Square, the world-famous and historic Tiananmen Square, or “Gate of Heavenly Peace”. Located in the heart of Beijing, Tiananmen Square was once the main gate to the Imperial Palace during the Ming (1368-1644) and Qing (1644-1911) dynasties. Today, it is home to the Monument to the People’s Heroes, Mao Zedong Memorial Hall, National Museum of China, and the Great Hall of the People. Afterwards, we drive by the famed Olympic Site and have a photo stop at Olympic National Stadium (the Bird's Nest), Olympic National Aquatics Center (the Water Cube) and National Center for the Performing Art. In the afternoon, you have the opportunity to explore the home to Ming and Qing emperors, Forbidden City. Comprised of 800 buildings covering 720,000 sq. meters, it is the world's largest palace complex.
**For those travelers joining the Forbidden City optional tour - your passport is required for entry. Please note if your passport does not match the passport on file for your reservation, you will be denied entry at the Forbidden City and your ticket will be nonrefundable**
Spend the day free or take the tour to visit the Great Wall, which is one of the man-built architectures that can be seen from the from the low orbit of the earth. The Great Wall is a massive defensive structure built to keep intruders from invading the mainland. It stretches an impossible 4000 miles across China's north, covering nine provinces. An enormous undertaking that originally began under Qin Shi Huang (first emperor of China) in 200 B.C., the Great Wall was not completed until the Ming Dynasty in 1640. This morning you have plenty of time to walk along its ancient path and experience part of China's fascinating history.
Today we continue our journey by flying to Xian, the capital of Shannxi Province, one of the oldest cities in China. Xian is one of the Four Great Ancient Capitals of China with more than 3100 years of history. The city was known as "Chang'an" before Ming Dynasty. Xian is the eastern teminus of the Silk Road and home to the Terra Cotta Warriors. Upon arrival in Xian, we will drive into town, passing through its massive City Wall, the best preserved defensive wall structure on earth and have a picture stop at Drum Tower and Bell Tower. In the evening, don't miss the chance to taste the local famous dumpling banquet.
Rest at the hotel or take the opportunity to visit one of the most significant archaeological discoveries of the 20th century, the Terra Cotta Warriors. One of the four ancient capitals of the world, Xian has been lauded for its abundance of historical relics, including its most famous, the Terra Cotta Warriors. Serendipitously discovered by a farmer in 1974, the realistic army of clay soldiers, horses and carriages has won the city international acclaim. Unearthed from the mausoleum of China’s first emperor, the life size army stand proudly in battle formation. After surveying the troops, we venture back to the city and visit the Big Wild Goose Pagoda, one of the best-preserved Buddhist pagodas in China. Tonight, take the opportunity to enjoy the cultural musings of the Tang Dynasty Show, a song and dance performance which reflects the rich cultural history and prosperity of the Tang Dynasty (618-907).
Depart for Guilin, a city renowned for its picturesque landscapes and dramatic natural beauty. Nestled on the banks of Li River, it is a charming escape from the hustle and bustle of nearby city life. As the old Chinese saying goes, "The scenery of Guilin is unrivalled under heaven.” Karst limestone formations imbue Guilin's landscape with a mystical, dreamlike quality.
Today,we will explore Reed Flute Cave, where fantastic stalactite and stalagmite formations create a hauntingly beautiful atmosphere. After lunch, our tour continues to the Longji Ancient Zhuang Village and Longji Rice Terraces. These majestic terraced fields are built along the slope winding form the riverside up to the mountain top, the highest point being 880 m in elevation. The Longji rice terraces are simply breathtaking during every season – from the lush green paddies in the summer to the golden yellow sheen in autumn, the Longji Rice terraces are a sight you won't want to miss.
Relax at the hotel today or join our optional excursion to witness the rolling landscapes of Southern China as we cruise down the jade waters of the Li River. A dazzling backdrop of mist-shrouded hills, steep cliffs and leisurely boats meandering by transports us to a place far removed from the hustle and bustle of city life. Lunch is served aboard. The riverboat will arrive at the town of Yangshuo, where we disembark for a brief city tour before returning back to Guilin. Afterwards we will depart Guilin for Shanghai, China’s most populous and modern city. Once dubbed the “Pearl of the Orient,” Shanghai holds an important place in modern China. Along the city’s famous waterfront Bund, glittering skyscrapers juxtapose older sections of the city, offering a glimpse into China’s past and present
This morning, we visit the Shanghai Museum and view the exhibits of ancient Chinese art. Designed by a local Shanghai Architect, the current building was completed in 1993 and resembles the shape of a bronze cooking vessel. Afterwards, we visit City God Temple Bazaar, the Nanjing Bund and the Bund. Spend the afternoon relax at the hotel or take the optional tour to Lujiazui Finance and Trade Development Zone and a ride on Huang Pu River Cruise. In the evening, do not miss the opportunity to experience the exciting Chinese Acrobatics Show (with dinner).
Transfer to the airport and board a short flight to the dynamic island of Hong Kong. Upon arrival, check into our selected hotel and spend the rest of the day free at leisure.
Enjoy your leisure time in Hong Kong.we will take you to visit the Victoria Peak, Stanley Market, Repulse Bay and Aberdeen Floating community.Victoria Peak, one of Hong Kong’s most famous scenic spots, offers breathtaking views of Hong Kong’s skyline, Kowloon, and Victoria Harbour. The Peak, as locals call it, is located on a mountaintop and is reachable by the Peak Tram. Pulled by steel cables, the tram climbs 1,200 feet (about373 meters) up the side of the mountain.Stanley also has beautiful beaches that are popular with windsurfers, as well as a wide variety of trendy bars and restaurants to enjoy after a long day of sightseeing.
Our voyage through China and Hong Kong comes to an end as we board our international flight back to the US.
Create your ideal getaway with the following upgrade options. Extensions and upgrades can be added during the booking process.
*Subject to availability; extension and upgrade options vary by tour
*Subject to availability
Save with the China Scenic Best Seller Value Pack!
Included are our top rated optional excursions:
Great Wall & Sacred Way [Day 4]
Terracotta Warriors, First Qin Emperor's Mausoleum & Big Wild Goose Pagoda [Day 6]
Li River & Yangshuo Xi Street [Day 8]
Turn back time to the days of China’s great emperors on a 4-hour optional tour of Beijing’s historical showpiece: the UNESCO-protected Forbidden City. Located on the northern edge of Tiananmen Square in the heart of China’s vast capital, this gargantuan walled palace was the residence and political base of 24 emperors of the Ming and
Stride along the Great Wall of China and visit the Sacred Way of China’s past emperors on this fascinating 8-hour optional day trip from Beijing.
After pickup from your hotel in the city, soak in views of Beijing’s suburbs and rural China as you travel north to one of the most scenic sections of the Great
Enjoy a feast of dumplings, a universal favorite which holds a rich history in China. Tonight, you'll get a chance to taste 18 different varieties of dumplings, ranging from sweet to savory.
Visit the famed Terracotta Warriors Museum, where you'll tour the excavation pit, the copper chariot, and watch a circle vision film about the discovery. Enjoy lunch en route, then visit Mausoleum of the First Qin Emperor and China's most well-preserved Buddhist pagoda, the Big Wild Goose Pagoda. Afterwards, we stop by at Arts & Crafts Center. (Will provide earphone if over 10 visitors.)
Enjoy a world-class dinner prepared by internationally-acclaimed chefs, then watch the legends of the Tang Dynasty unfold. This show recounts the cultural history and splendor the dynasty's past through captivating performances of song and dance.
Cruise along the poetic Li River, one of Guilin's most renowned scenic destinations. Soak up the tranquil scenery, dotted with rice paddies, limestone karst formations, and the ocassional water buffalo or fisherman. Disembark at Yangshuo and stroll along the famed Xi Street, where you can find traditional handicrafts as well as modern cafes and bars.
Then, cruise along the city's main shipping artery, the Huangpu River, and enjoy sweeping views of Shanghai's cityscapes. Colonial buildings along the Bund and gleaming skyscrapers in Pudong.
The whole trip was on point day in day out, got to see so many main parts of China, no time wasted, money well spent to see some of the most talked about places in China, the guides always taking care of us, very informative, patient and loved what they do. Best tour guide was Journey in Beijing, she was amazing! All 4 hotels were top quality, excellent views, by far more than what I was expecting, breakfast was bi ordinary, it was more than what you would expect in a hotel, it wasn't just apples and cereal, it was all the protein and health you would need for a long day! but Lijiang Waterfall hotel in Guilin and Gran Noble in Xi'an charged me a security deposit, not sure why, Doubletree Hilton in Beijing and Crown Plaza YingZing in Shanghai did not, which allowed me to have more cash on hand to spend. Overall a lifetime experience, unforgettable, no regrets money well spent on my first trip to China!More Less
Affordable World was worth the cost and some of the local guides went above and beyond their duties to make sure we were comfortable. They also gave us more than we expected. Gary in Beijing and Joe in Guilin were 5 star tour guides. This is a great tour for beginners who want an overview of China. The only negative is that there were times it felt a little touristy and were just opportunities to feed into the local economy i.e.the Pearl Museum and the Cloisonné factory. Some of the lunchtime restaurants were also a bit too touristy for my taste; the parking lots were filled with tourist buses. I prefer more local flavor. Also, in Hong Kong I wish the tour had been longer. We didn't get to really see a lot of Hong Kong. Overall, I would recommend Affordable World who wants to experience China.More Less
My wife and I just returned from this tour. We were very happy with the booking and tour experience. We were initially a little worried since everything was done online and the one phone conversation with an agent during the booking process was not very helpful. However, everything went as planned. Air China service may not be as praised as the other Asian airlines, but was satisfactory. They fed us all the time... The hotels were all good. We arrived early in the morning of the day initial of the tour and were offered an extra half day of tour to the Temple of Heaven in Beijing and to the Hutong. It was extra cost but very interesting. The tour to the Forbidden City and Tianamen Square were very rushed because the guide wanted to add an extra tour to the Summer Palace, at extra cost. It was worth but we felt we could have spent one extra day in Beijing in order to fit all those tours at a normal pace. We would have liked to have some free time in Tianamen Square to visit the monuments and the tomb of Mao. The time in Xian was well planned and very interesting. In Guillin we had more free time than what we needed. Since only 4 people of the initial group went there, we were added to other group from the parent company, Ritz tours. The cruise was very pleasant, not crowded. We ordered an optional lunch in the boat and were treated to an excellent multiple dish meal of typical food. There plans were somewhat different and we ended with a free morning with not much to do. The afternoon was rushed again. The tea stop was very interesting but the cavern was same as what we have seen in other parts of the world, not worth the time. We almost missed our flight to Shanghai. We spent only one day in Shanghai, which I believe is very short for all what needs to be seen. Free time in the Shanghai Hotel is too short to visit the gardens and any streets. The extension to Honk Kong is not a direct AA tour but a half day shared with other tour companies. Therefore we had to find our way to the shuttle area in the airport and the next morning walk to a different hotel to be picked up for the tour. The tour was well organized and pleasant. Regarding the guides, all of them were pleasant, punctual and very helpful. Our guides in Beijing, Xian and Guilin were very knowledgeable and kept us entertained with different information about the history, geography, politics, economics of the cities, areas we visited and the country of China. Argent, the guide in Shanghai, only helped us organize the day and transport us from place to place without giving us much information. We would have been happy to know before booking our dates that October 1st was the National Day in China and most people have a weeks vacation. It did not affect our daily schedule but most of the areas were more crowded that normal. As I previously indicated, we were very satisfied with the tour and will recommend our friends to use the company for future travel to Asia.More Less
I returned from my trip on 09/27/14. The length of the trip was a total of 16 days. Every segment of this trip was outstanding. First of all Air China's service excellent. The toughest part of the flight was the length, and even this was not too much of an issue. The flight attendants were very pleasant and helpful and it seems like they were always coming around with snacks and food stuff. In addition to all of this, the seats were very comfortable. These statements apply to both international flights and intra flights. I commend the staff at Affordable World for using this airline. They did an outstanding job in this respect. Now as far as the tours were concerned, I could not have asked for anything more. The tour guides were so friendly and knowledgeable and were always willing to accommodate everyone as mush as possible. I would specifically like to recognize the tour guide Nina from Beijing and Regina from Xi'an. From the moment I met Nina at the Beijing airport, I felt such a piece of mind. She just seems to have that quality. Regina is just awesome. She was just so friendly and full of life. I can tell she takes real pride in her job. Joe from Guilin and Argent from Shanghai were excellent as well. All of the cities visited were beautiful and they each had something different to offer. What really amazed me is that the tour guides knew the right times for specific activities so that we didn't have to wait very long on lines. In addition to all of this airport transfers were very seamless. I really didn't have any issues at the various airports as far as meeting the guides or checking into those sirports when the tours were over. The guides were with us every step of the way. I would like to make a suggestion. Would it be possible to incorporate Hong Kong into the package as opposed to making it an extension? The process would be even smoother if that can be done. All in all I was very well satisfied with Affordale Asia and would definitely use them again for other Asia tours they're offering and recommend them to others. There slogan is 'Get Your Money's Worth'. I'm here to tell everyone reading this review that this is a factual statement because I experienced it first hand. Thank you very much Affordable World. This is probably the very best international vacation I've had thus far.More Less
We just returned from this trip and were very pleased with our entire booking and traveling experiences with Affordable World! Our tour guides were all very reliable, albeit some were better than others in educating us about history and sights. We did not have any horrible experiences with the tipping issue. One of our guides did mention it but it was not high pressured. The hotels were all top-notch and most were centrally located. AA just changed their Shanghai hotel to a better located one. Wish we had stayed in the new one instead which is right on Nanjing road. Ours, the Renaissance hotel, was very nice but it was out of the way. Also, the breakfast buffets at the hotels were always plentiful and interesting. We were concerned about the shopping stops. Much to our pleasant surprise, the stops turned out to be some of our favorite experiences. They were always quick and not high pressured at all. Also, prices at the stops were fixed and reasonable. We bought 100% silk filled pillows and a comforter from the Shanghai Waima Silk Museum. Pricing was good but the pillows are not as lofty as we like them to be. Regardless, kudos to AA's new shopping policy. It's a great option for anyone who does not wish to waste precious time shopping. Our excursion experiences at the Forbidden City in Beijing and the Li River Cruise in Guilin were disappointing. All we got out of the Forbidden City tour was being in a courtyard walking up to a hall with no access to any rooms and whizzing through the Rockery garden, the best part of FC relatively speaking. As for the Cruise, it was crowded and noisy. We would have preferred lunch being brought to our table instead of a buffet lunch where we were jostling with aggressive locals. Do not think it is AA's fault though. The excursions are probably set by the destination organizations. Last but not least, we highly recommend a Shanghai extension in addition to the Hong Kong extension. Wish we had known we could do that. There simply was not enough time in Shanghai with the regular itinerary. We would definitely take another trip with AA again! They are professional, reliable and a good value!!More Less