Legendary Yangtze Cruise
18 Days from just £2,840 per person
Sites Visited: Temple of Heaven; Tiananmen Square; Forbidden City; Summer Palace; The Great Wall; Ming Tombs; Silk Market; Bell Tower; Terracotta Warriors; Big Wild Goose Pagoda; Xian Ancient City Wall; Jade Buddha Temple; Panda Research Centre... and much more!
Mountains over the Yangtze River
Day 1 - London Heathrow to Shanghai
Depart from London Heathrow airport for international scheduled flight direct* to Shanghai. We can also arrange departures from your local airport at no extra cost.
*Emperor Tours will always book direct flights - however during peak periods (eg. Christmas, Easter and summer holidays) airlines charge considerably more, so a small supplement may apply. Alternatively we will book indirect flights.
Day 2 - Shanghai
Arrive at Shanghai Pudong Airport and transfer to hotel in the city centre and rest. Later in the afternoon we visit the Old Town and the enchanting Yuyuan Garden, a place of peace and comfort in the heart of bustling Shanghai, dating back to the Ming Dynasty.
Tonight after dinner your tour manager will take you for a leisurely walk on the Bund – Shanghai’s famous waterfront, where you will be treated with the breathtaking skyline on both sides of the Huangpu River. (L/D)
Accommodation - 5* Majesty Plaza Shanghai or similar
Day 3 - Shanghai / Suzhou
This morning we travel by coach to Suzhou – China’s garden city, known as the “Oriental Venice”, renowned for its canals, arched stone bridges and silk products. We will visit two of its most popular gardens – Humble Administrator’s Garden and Garden of the Master of the Nets, classical Chinese gardens surrounded by different types of buildings around streams and ponds. Later we visit the city’s famous Silk Museum and Panmen Gate, the oldest city gate in existence in Suzhou city consisting of water and land gates.We return to Shanghai in the evening. (B/L)
Day 4 - Shanghai to Yichang
We start the tour today with a visit to the Jade Buddha Temple, originally built in 1882 to keep two jade Buddha statues which had been brought from Burma by a monk named Huigen.
In the afternoon we take a flight to Yichang. Upon arrival, transfer to 5* Yangtze Cruise for late evening departure. (B/D)
Accommodation - 5* Century Cruise or 5* Victoria Cruise
Day 5 - Yangtze River*
Our cruise starts today with a visit to the Three Gorges Dam construction site. We sail through the Three Gorges Shiplocks and Xiling Gorge. (B/L/D)
*Cruise schedule may be subject to change, depending on the water level.
Day 6 - Yangtze River
Our cruise today takes an excursion to the beautiful Daning River through its lesser Three Gorges, or a small boat trip to the Shennong Stream - drift along the crystal clear water and be dazzled by the strength and bravery of boat-trackers. You will pass through Wu Gorge/Qutang Gorge. (B/L/D)
Day 7 - Yangtze River
Today we have a shore excursion to Shibaozhai (Precious Stone Stronghold) - first built during the Qing Dynasty in 1650. Depending on water levels, the shore excursion may visit Wanzhou (Wanxian) instead. (B/L/D)
Day 8 - Chongqing to Chengdu to Guilin
This morning we disembark the ship at Chongqing and transfer by train to Chengdu. Upon arrival we visit the Giant Panda Breeding Research Base, one of the most important centres in China for the captive conservation of giant pandas and a highlight of any visit to Chengdu.
After a sizzling Sichuan style dinner, transfer to airport for evening departure flight to Guilin, one of the most picturesque cities in China. (B/D)
Accommodation - 4* Bravo Hotel
Day 9 - Guilin
Enjoy a leisurely morning in Guilin. Afternoon visit the Reed Flute Cave, which got its name from the verdant reeds growing outside it, from which people make flutes.
We then continue our tour to Fubo Hill (also known as Wave-Subduing Hill). A tale has it that Ma Yuan who was called General Fubo from the Han Dynasty had once passed by Guilin on a southern expedition.
After dinner this evening, Emperor Tours will treat you to a refreshing traditional Chinese foot massage – a truly sensual experience! (B/D)
Day 10 - Guilin to Yangshou
Today we take a boat cruise along the beautiful and scenic Li River to Yangshuo – a small town near Guilin which boasts of stunning landscapes. After lunch on the boat, we will check into hotel and then you will have time to browse around Yangshuo’s lively local market.
After dinner we will see cormorant fishing by local fishermen. (B/L/D)
Accommodation - Mountain Retreat or Dragon River Retreat
Day 11 - Yangshou
This morning we will explore the beautiful surrounding area on bicycle, first visiting Moon Hill and then the Big Banyan Tree. The afternoon is time to take a well deserved rest!
A Chinese Cooking Lesson will be arranged for those who are interested, where you will have the opportunity to learn how to cook authentic Chinese dishes. (B/L)
Day 12 - Guilin to Xian
This morning we fly to Xian, the ancient capital of China. Upon arrival transfer to hotel in city centre. Later your tour manager will take you to visit the Ancient City Walls, originally built during the Tang Dynasty, it is the most complete city wall that has survived in China, as well as being one of the largest military defensive systems in the world. Continue to the Bell Tower – beautifully lit with red lanterns, this is the landmark of Xian. We will also have time to browse around the colourful local food market in the Muslim quarter. Our final destination today is the Big Wild Goose Pagoda – known as the best-preserved Buddhist temple complex, the Temple was initially built in 589, during the Sui Dynasty (581-618).
Tonight enjoy a spectacular Tang Dynasty dinner show. (B/L/D)
Accommodation - 5* Grand Noble Hotel
Day 13 - Xian
Today our tour begins with another highlight of the entire journey - the Terracotta Warriors and Horses, built over 2,000 years ago to guard the tomb of emperor Qinshihuang. Over 7,000 life-size figures unearthed since 1974, this is truly one of the greatest archaeological discoveries of the 20th century.
In the afternoon we continue to visit the Huaqing Hot Spring. (B/L)
Day 14 - Xian to Beijing
This morning we transfer to Xian airport for short flight to Beijing. Upon arrival we will visit the Temple of Heaven – built in 1420, it was the place where the Ming and Qing emperors worshipped the God of Heaven and prayed for good harvest for the year. We then continue with a rickshaw tour around old Beijing’s Hutong (alleyways) area - visit a typical Beijing family in a courtyard house; also stop by a local school. We will also visit the Olympic Village, Birds Nest Stadium and Water Cube. (B/L)
Accommodation - 5* Beijing Xinhai Jinjiang Hotel or similar
Day 15 - Beijing
Today we travel outside the city to the Great Wall. You will be given plenty of time to explore this magnificent monument and climb to the top.
In the afternoon we visit the enchanting and mysterious Ming Tombs - the burial site for 13 Ming emperors!
This evening after dinner we will take a closer look into Beijing people's night life by visiting the trendy Shichahai bar street - experience the Chinese pub culture. (B/L/D)
Day 16 - Beijing
Start our tour this morning with a visit to Tiananmen Square - the largest public square in the world. Walking through the Gate of Heavenly Peace (late Chairman Mao's huge portrait hanging over the gate), we enter the magnificent Forbidden City - which served as imperial palaces for 24 emperors since 15th century. This massive palace compound never fails to impress.
In the afternoon the tour continues to the enchanting Summer Palace – the largest imperial garden in the world, where late Qing emperors and empresses stayed between May and October, seeking escape from the pollution inside the city. Enjoy a relaxing boat ride on the beautiful Kunming Lake.
Tonight enjoy a Peking Opera performance. (B/L/D)
Day 17 - Beijing
Day time free to explore or relax. For those who are interested, your guide will take you to visit the Silk Market for some last minute shopping.
This evening enjoy a farewell dinner in a famous Peking duck restaurant. (B/D)
Day 18 - Beijing to London Heathrow
Hong Kong Extension (extra nights are available upon request):
Day 18 - Beijing to Hong Kong
This morning transfer to airport for flight to Hong Kong. Upon arrival, transfer to hotel. Rest of day free at leisure. (B)
Accommodation - 4+* Harbour Plaza Metropolis
Day 19 - Hong Kong
Half day Hong Kong tour to the Victoria Peak, Stanley Market, Aberdeen Fishing Village, etc. Rest of day free. (B)
Day 20 - Hong Kong to London Heathrow
Day time free to either relax or explore the amazing east west culture of Hong Kong. Late evening transfer to airport for travel home. (B)
Day 21 - London Heathrow
Morning arrival in London. End of itinerary.
18 Days Package Price from just £2,840 per person (Single supplement £520, or £320 if share cabin on cruise)
21 Days Package Price (with Hong Kong) from just £3,240 per person (Single supplement £640, or £440 if share cabin on cruise)
- International flight London - Shanghai / Beijing (or Hong Kong) - London
- 4*/5* hotel accommodation (on twin share basis)
- 5* Yangtze River Cruise
- Meals as described (B - breakfast, L - lunch, D - dinner)
- Daily supply of bottled water
- Fully escorted tours with English speaking guides
- All domestic flights
- All airport taxes and service charges
- Travel insurance (can be arranged, please ask for details)
- Tips to guides and drivers
- Chinese visa