3588
China
China by Train and Yangtze Riverboat
Explore the rivers, mountains, villages and cities of China by riverboat and train, and learn from local experts as you discuss local culture, practice tai ji and walk the Great Wall.
Rating (5)
Program No. 3588RJ
Length
23 days
Starts at
4,999
Flights start at
850
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23 days
22 nights
56 meals
21 B 18 L 17 D
Getting There
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DAY
1
In Transit to Program
In Flight
DAY
2
Arrive Beijing, Orientation, Welcome Dinner
Beijing
D
Qianmen Jianguo Hotel

Afternoon: Arrive at Beijing International Airport where your Group Leader (National Guide) will be waiting for you. After check-in and a short rest, get together for a Welcome Meeting at your hotel. Note: CAEE Group Leaders are qualified National Guides who are full-time permanent members of our offices. All are university graduates, fluent in English, well-educated in safety and protocol and are supported by offices nation-wide.

Dinner: Dinner will be at your hotel.

Evening: at your leisure

DAY
3
Temple of Heaven, Forbidden City, Peking Duck Dinner
Beijing
B,L,D
Qianmen Jianguo Hotel

Breakfast: After morning tai ji, enjoy your hotel's buffet breakfast.

Morning: Depart the hotel at 8:30 am for the 15th century architectural masterpiece, the Temple of Heaven which symbolizes the relationship between heaven and earth. Walk the extensive grounds to the Temple itself or stay in its environs and enjoy the activities of local people practicing calligraphy, tai ji, musical instruments, dancing, or flying kites. Later, stop at the 'heart of Beijing' -- Tian'anmen Square

Lunch: Lunch at a local restaurant.

Afternoon: Explore the Forbidden City, a vast complex once the seat of Qing Emperors and forbidden to all others.

Dinner: This evening at a Welcome Dinner, celebrate with a Beijing specialty: Peking Duck Dinner. Peking Duck was first created in Beijing for emperors six hundred years ago during the Ming Dynasty. Thinly sliced, with crisp skin, the duck is wrapped in light pancakes with julienned cucumbers and a variety of sauces. It is often said that if you go to Beijing there are two things you must do: walk the Great Wall and enjoy Peking Duck.

Evening: After dinner, the rest of the evening is at your leisure.

DAY
4
Pedicab in Old Beijing, Family Lunch,Summer Palace
Beijing
B,L,D
Qianmen Jianguo Hotel

Breakfast: After morning tai ji, enjoy your hotel's buffet breakfast. Hotel buffet is offered between 6:30 am and 9:30 am.

Morning: A Talk at your hotel introduces China's Land and Peoples. Then coach to hutongs (small residential alleys and courtyards) near Beihai Park and explore this old neighborhood via pedicab. Visit families in their homes and the former residence of Song Qing Ling, political activist and wife of Dr. Sun Yat Sen.

Lunch: Enjoy a local lunch hosted by hutong families.

Afternoon: This afternoon, enjoy the beauty of the Qing Emperors’ Summer Palace where lily ponds and arched bridges border its serene lake and painted pavilions depict stories that reflect the rich history of Chinese life and art. After, return to your hotel.

Dinner: Dinner at hotel or local restaurant.

Evening: Get together with your group leader to learn some useful Chinese phrases.

DAY
5
Walk the Wild Great Wall at Jin Shan Ling
Beijing
B,L
Qianmen Jianguo Hotel

Breakfast: Hotel buffet is offered between 6:30 am and 9:30 am.

Morning: Coach out of the city to the Great Wall at Jin Shan Ling, a section sometimes referred to as the “Wild Great Wall,” as it is not overly restored and receives few visitors. Take a gondola to the upper part of the wall, then walk along its battlements and through watchtowers to experience magnificent views of the wall as it climbs and descends over the distant mountains. .

Lunch: A simple box lunch is provided to eat at a spot of your choosing on the wall.

Afternoon: Return to your hotel

Dinner: Your chance to choose local fare.

Evening: At leisure.

DAY
6
Bullet Train to Luoyang, Intro to Classical Chinese Music
Luoyang
B,L,D
New Friendship Hotel

Breakfast: Early breakfast at your hotel.

Morning: Coach to Beijing West Station to board a bullet train to the small city of Luoyang in Henan Province, located about 500 miles southwest of Beijing. The comfortable four-hour high-speed train takes us through two provinces in north China (Hebei and Henan) and crosses the Yellow River. Luoyang was one of the four great ancient capitals of China and is home to the extraordinary Longmen Buddhist cliff carvings.

Lunch: We'll bring a box lunch for the train.

Afternoon: arrive at Luoyang Longmen station and check in to hotel.

Dinner: hotel dining room

Evening: Enjoy an introduction to traditional Chinese musical instruments with demonstration (at your hotel).

DAY
7
Longmen Cliff Carvings and Life in an Agricultural Village
Luoyang
B,L,D
New Friendship Hotel

Breakfast: Enjoy early morning tai ji movements on the People's Square, filled with local people practicing martial arts, ballroom dancing or airing pet birds. And then enjoy your hotel's buffet breakfast. Hotel buffet is offered between 6:00 am and 10:00 am.

Morning: After breakfast, depart for the 1,500 year old Longmen Grottoes. Learn about these stone carvings that overlook the Yi River and which celebrate the introduction of Buddhism into China.

Lunch: At restaurant nearby.

Afternoon: This afternoon, visit Huai Shu Wan agricultural village and its Primary School. Huai Shu Wan is a typical north Chinese country village and its primary school has about 200 pupils from various villages in the area. Observe classes, talk with the English teachers and then visit families in the village.

Dinner: Dinner in restaurant on way to hotel

Evening: at your leisure

DAY
8
Train to Xian, Muslim Area on Foot
Xi'an
B,L,D
Grand Noble Hotel

Breakfast: After morning tai ji, enjoy a buffet breakfast in the hotel.

Morning: Take a morning train to the City of Xi'an. Enjoy views of rural life from the train as you ascend China's Yellow Soil Plateau. The land is covered with a thick layer of wind-blown loess soil, which masks the original landforms. Deeply eroded, the landscape has steep ravines and almost vertical cliff faces pocked with holes and caves known as 'yaodong,' which are used for dwelling and resting.

Lunch: Train arrives at Xi'an Station about noon. We'll have lunch at a Muslim Restaurant.

Afternoon: Explore Xi'an's Hui Muslim section on foot. We'll meet at Xi'an's ancient Drum Tower to catch a traditional drumming performance. After, check in to your hotel in the late afternoon.

Dinner: At hotel

Evening: Join your Group Leader to practice some Chinese conversation.

DAY
9
Chinese Life Views, Dynastic Treasures at Museum of History
Xi'an
B,L,D
Grand Noble Hotel

Breakfast: After morning tai ji, enjoy a buffet breakfast in the hotel.

Morning: At Xi'an's renowned International Studies University, a presentation discusses Daoism, Buddhism and Confucianism as a way of illuminating the Chinese 'character' and world views.

Lunch: University dining room. After lunch, walk the campus and speak with university students to learn about China's new generation.

Afternoon: Understand China's dynastic history, as well as its rich and enduring culture in a tour of its state-of-the-art Museum of History.

Dinner: At a local restaurant.

Evening: at your leisure

DAY
10
A Qin Emperor's Terra Cotta Warriors
Xi'an
B,L
Grand Noble Hotel

Breakfast: After morning tai ji, enjoy a buffet breakfast in the hotel

Morning: Experience one of the great 20th century discoveries -- the life-size terra cotta army buried with a Qing Emperor 2,200 years ago and only uncovered by farmers in 1974.

Lunch: at a nearby restaurant

Afternoon: Return to town about mid-afternoon. The rest of the afternoon is at your leisure.

Dinner: Take dinner of your own choosing.

Evening: Get together with your group leader to practice spoken Chinese.

DAY
11
Fly to Chongqing, Giant Pandas, Yangtze River Sailing
Yangtze River Vessel
B,L,D
Victoria Cruise Lines

Breakfast: After morning tai ji, enjoy a buffet breakfast in the hotel.

Morning: A discussion of Chinese calligraphy introduces this ancient and elegant art form. If time permits, try your hand at producing Chinese characters.

Lunch: lunch en route

Afternoon: Take an early afternoon flight to Chongqing. Visit Chongqing Zoological Gardens to observe pandas which are indigenous to this Province only.

Dinner: Savor a traditional hotpot dinner at restaurant.

Evening: Board your Yangtze vessel and, as you set sail, view the hill city of Chongqing at night.

DAY
12
Shore Visit to Relocated Families in a New Yangtze Village
Yangtze River Vessel
B,L,D
Victoria Cruise Lines

Breakfast: ship's buffet.

Morning: Discuss traditional Chinese medicine and consider the Yangtze's influence on China. Whenever possible, your national guide will also continue instruction in tai ji and Chinese conversation.

Lunch: Ship's buffet

Afternoon: Visit a new village for relocated families. Explore their agricultural market and visit with a local family. This evening, the Captain invites you to a welcome reception

Dinner: on board

Evening: Evening entertainment includes performances of Chinese music and dance.

DAY
13
Sail through the Yangtze Gorges, Mini Gorges
Yangtze River Vessel
B,L,D
Victoria Cruise Lines

Breakfast: Ship's buffet.

Morning: Today, pass through the renowned Yangze Gorges. Later, disembark at Wushan Danning River for an excursion to the Three Little Gorges, a quiet tributary of the Yangtze where we ferry upstream beneath a fantastic natural backdrop. Look up in the cliffs for 'hanging coffins,' suspended there thousands of years ago by the Ba people. And further down the cliffs, watch for golden-haired monkeys and goats.

Lunch: Ship's buffet.

Afternoon: Return to your ship and continue sailing down the Yangtze River.

Dinner: Captain's farewell banquet

Evening: Enjoy an on-board performance of Chinese music and dance.

DAY
14
Three Gorges Dam Site, Disembark for Train to Wuhan
Wuhan
B,L,D
Hong Shan Hotel

Breakfast: Ship's buffet.

Morning: This morning, take a short coach ride to the Three Gorges Dam site. From an observation deck, you will have a bird's-eye view of the dam, five-step ship lock, diversion canal, and power station. A nearby exhibition displays a dam model; a briefing will explain this project, one of the largest construction ventures ever.

Lunch: En route.

Afternoon: Disembark at Yichang and then depart by train for Wuhan (about 2 1/2 hours).

Dinner: at hotel or local restaurant

Evening: Meet with your national guide and practice some Chinese phrases and learn Chinese finger counting.

DAY
15
Relics at Wuhan Museum, Rice Cultivation, Children's Palace
Wuhan
B,L,D
Hong Shan Hotel

Breakfast: If you like, join your group leader for before-breakfast tai ji. Breakfast buffet is offered from 6:30 am to 8:00 am.

Morning: Enjoy Wuhan Museum's beautiful collection of lacquer ware and other artifacts - including a large set of bells discovered in a tomb dating from 500 B.C.

Lunch: at a local restaurant

Afternoon: This afternoon coach to Huazhong Agricultural University and learn about rice cultivation in a talk and observe cultivars in their experimental fields. Then enjoy interacting with local youngsters at Wuhan's 'Children's Palace,' a government supported recreation center, examples of which exist throughout China and where extra activities include music, dance, painting, calligraphy, sports and martial arts.

Dinner: dinner at restaurant

Evening: Join your Group Leader to practice some useful Chinese phrases.

DAY
16
Train Journey to the Miao Town of Kaili
Kaili
B,L,D
Grand Metropark Hotel Kaili

Breakfast: buffet breakfast is served at the hotel. Feel free to join your group leader for optional tai ji before breakfast.

Morning: Depart for Wuhan Railway Station for high speed train to Kaili. Travel through Hunan Province to the Province of Guizhou, one of China's most beautiful and sparsely populated regions.

Lunch: On board train.

Afternoon: Cross the border to Guizhou Province, where you begin to notice the difference in architecture, especially the elegant wooden, balconied houses of Miao families. Arrive in Kaili this afternoon.

Dinner: at a local restaurant.

Evening: Get together with your Group Leader for Chinese conversation practice.

DAY
17
Miao Music & Papermaking in Country Villages
Kaili
B,L,D
Grand Metropark Hotel Kaili

Breakfast: After morning tai ji practice, enjoy breakfast at hotel buffet.

Morning: A talk at your hotel discusses the minority peoples of Guizhou Province. Then, drive into the beautiful Kaili countryside passing terraced mountains and small Miao villages. This morning stop at Qingman Miao Village for a performance of traditional music and dance.

Lunch: hosted by a local family at Qingman Miao village.

Afternoon: This afternoon, we explore another small mountain village in which, for centuries, households have made fine calligraphy paper from the bark of the mulberry tree.

Dinner: at a local restaurant.

Evening: Get together with your Group Leader for conversation practice.

DAY
18
Miao Sunday Market, TCM Clinic, Coach to Guiyang
Guiyang
B,L,D
Hotel Novotel Guiyang

Breakfast: Following morning tai ji, enjoy breakfast at hotel buffet.

Morning: This morning coach to a local Traditional Chinese Medicine Clinic to learn about traditional treatments. Then depart for the nearby Kaili Sunday Market where Miao people come to exchange, sell and buy goods - from baskets and cookware to necklaces and hand embroidery. Pass itinerant dentists and barbers plying their skills.

Lunch: At a local restaurant.

Afternoon: After lunch, travel westward by coach to Guiyang, the provincial capital.

Dinner: Dinner is at your hotel.

Evening: Join your Group Leader to practice some Chinese conversation.

DAY
19
Folk Opera Performance by Villagers, Tea Cultivation
Guiyang
B,L
Hotel Novotel Guiyang

Breakfast: Hotel buffet.

Morning: This morning, visit Ji Chang village whose residents are descendants of Han military units sent to Guizhou in the 15th century. Among the customs they brought with them was 'dixi' ('earth opera'), a folk form that dates from the early Ming Dynasty and is still performed in 'old Han' locales. Villagers will perform a sampling of dixi, using traditional hand-made wooden masks.

Lunch: Enjoy dim sum lunch -- a Cantonese 'tea meal' favorite. These dishes include a selection of fried and steamed dumplings, as well as various other savory items. The term for this Chinese style of eating translates as 'Heart's Delight.' Originally dim sum referred to the practice of serving small dishes in teahouses.

Afternoon: At a tea farm, observe plants in the fields and the selection process for picking fresh leaves. Learn about the process of creating green tea from the fresh leaves.

Dinner: Your chance to choose local fare.

Evening: At your leisure.

DAY
20
Fly to Shanghai, Xin Tian Di District, Acrobatics
Shanghai
B,D
Astor House Hotel Shanghai

Breakfast: Hotel buffet.

Morning: Fly to Shanghai on early morning flight.

Lunch: Coach to Shanghai’s Xin Tian Di district – a restoration project that has set a benchmark for Asia. Take lunch on your own in one of its many cafes or international cuisine restaurants.

Afternoon: Explore Shanghai's traditional Bird and Flower Market. Check in to your hotel in the late afternoon.

Dinner: Walk to a nearby restaurant for dinner.

Evening: Performance by Shanghai Acrobatics Troupe. For more than 2,000 years, acrobatics has been an important component of Chinese performing arts and many of the feats performed originated with skills perfected by artisans and craftspeople. Acrobatics figures in other performance genres such as Chinese opera.

DAY
21
Shanghai's Future Planning & Bund Riverfront
Shanghai
B,L
Astor House Hotel Shanghai

Breakfast: Hotel buffet.

Morning: The astonishing transformation of Shanghai into one of the world’s ‘mega cities’ is revealed in a huge scale model that projects a city of the future at the Shanghai Urban Planning Center which we visit this morning. Compare this daring vision of the future with historical photos that capture cityscapes of days gone by.

Lunch: Enjoy imaginative vegetarian cuisine near the active Longhua Temple.

Afternoon: Depart for the Bund, Shanghai’s iconic waterfront of art deco and neo-classic buildings dating from the time of foreign concessions. View the busy river activity and the maze of glittering skyscrapers newly built across the river on what was, until recently, undeveloped farmland.

Dinner: This evening is a chance for a dinner of your own choosing. You can stay in the Bund area or return with the coach to your hotel.

Evening: at your leisure

DAY
22
Arts of China: Shanghai Museum and the Yu Garden
Shanghai
B,D
Astor House Hotel Shanghai

Breakfast: Hotel buffet.

Morning: Visit the Shanghai Museum. This 'state-of-the-art' museum is home to China's finest collection of paintings, ceramics, bronzes and sculptures and is an impressive testimony to China's long and rich culture. Audio guides are provided so that you can explore the museum according to your own interests. (If you like, travel to the Museum on Shanghai's new metro with your guide or take the coach.)

Lunch: The museum contains a small café where you can take lunch on your own at a time that is convenient for you as you explore the museum. Your group leader can also give you suggestions for restaurants nearby.

Afternoon: This afternoon, explore Shanghai's historic old section and the nearby Yu Garden, whose classical pavilions, fountains, and arching bridges exemplify traditional Chinese garden landscaping.

Dinner: Farewell dinner at a nearby restaurant.

DAY
23
Program Concludes
Shanghai
B

Breakfast: hotel buffet

Morning: Depart for Shanghai Airport for international departures or post-program travel.






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