Offer is valid on new bookings only and is only combinable with the family and friends savings offer, additional restrictions may apply.
Applies to new bookings only. Offer combinable with pay-in-full discount. Certain restrictions may apply.
Member-Only savings. Exclusive repeat traveler discounts. Additional restrictions may apply.
Day 1 - Day 1 - Welcome to Beijing
|We’ll be at the airport to escort you to the luxurious Fairmont Beijing Hotel.|
Day 2 - Day 2 - In and around Beijing with your Trip Leader
|Your expertly guided, full-day exploration of China’s vibrant capital begins in Tiananmen Square. Covering more than 100 acres in the heart of the city with a scale reminiscent of Moscow’s Red Square or the Piazza San Marco in Venice, it ranks as one of the grandest public plazas in the world. Then follow in the footsteps of Ming Dynasty emperors as you explore the magnificent palaces, courtyards and pavilions of the sprawling Forbidden City. It is said that there are 9,999 rooms within these imposing walls and although you won’t see everyone, your guided tour offers a fascinating look into the splendor of Imperial life centuries ago.|
Then explore by rickshaw through the narrow lanes of a Hutong – one of the city’s few remaining enclaves of traditional, centuries-old courtyard homes. Spend time with a resident family in the home they’ve occupied for generations and learn about the challenges and rewards of their life here in the bustling Chinese capital. Tonight’s festive Peking Duck banquet is accompanied by wine and local beer. Meals B+L+D
Day 3 - Day 3 - The Great Wall + Summer Palace
|Juyong Pass was recognized very early in China’s history as a site of great strategic importance and indeed this section of the thousands-mile long Great Wall is one of only three that were recognized by military leaders as being practically impregnable. Today, as you walk atop this ancient defensive structure, your expert guide will be on hand to enrich your exploration with dramatic stories and legends of the great battles that were waged here. Continue to the lovely Summer Palace, erstwhile retreat of China’s royalty. Tour its landscaped grounds and the picturesque pavilions that surround Lake Kunming before returning to your hotel. The 5-star Fairmont offers a variety of outstanding restaurants including The CUT, known for its outstanding steak and seafood, and Lunar 8 – a stylish venue with authentic Chinese and Asia cuisine prepared and presented with modern flair. Or take advantage of your hotel’s city-center location to sample one of Beijing’s many fine restaurants. General Tours in-the-know guide would be happy to offer personal recommendations and assistance. Meals B+L|
Day 4 - Day 4 - Fly to Xian
|After breakfast, you’ll be escorted to the airport for your included flight to Xian, China’s ancient capital for 13 dynasties. On arrival, you’ll be met and transferred to the Hilton Hotel, ideally situated within the old defensive walls of the city. Then join an engaging city resident to explore a colorful local market. Evoking the ancient rhythms of the fabled Silk Road, this bustling collection of vendors and market stalls is filled with an amazing range of products – from exotic foods and daily staples to traditional crafts and even souvenirs. Accompanied by insightful stories from General Tours special resident guide, this lively tour offers authentic insight into daily life and China’s enduring cultural ways. This evening, you’ll sample savory dumplings – a regional specialty and favorite. Meals B+D|
Day 5 - Day 5 - The Terra Cotta Warriors + Ancient City Walls
|Farmers stumbled upon the site while digging a well in 1974; today the Terra Cotta Army is still regarded as China’s greatest archaeological discovery. Set out this morning to visit the excavation site and marvel at the exquisite details of these clay warriors buried 2,000 years ago to guard the tomb of China’s first emperor. It has been estimated that more than half a million laborers and craftsmen worked for nearly 40 years to complete the tomb - and the thousands of terra cotta soldiers, horses and chariots that were to serve the Emperor in the afterlife. After lunch, you’ll visit the ancient defensive walls of the city before returning to your hotel. Meals B+L+D|
Day 6 - Day 6 - Marco Polo fell in love with Hangzhou... You will too!
|After breakfast, we’ll take you to the airport for your included flight to Hangzhou, where you’ll be escorted to the 5-star JW Marriott Hotel. Hangzhou is revered as one of China’s loveliest cities, as evidenced in an ancient Chinese proverb, “Above there is Heaven; below there is Hangzhou.” Indeed, these landscapes have inspired artists and poets for centuries, and today you’ll have a chance to experience its enchanting scenery for your self – beginning with a guided boat excursion across the tranquil waters of West Lake. Later, we’ll take you to an authentic working tea plantation where you’ll spend time with the farmers amidst the lush fields. From preparing the soil to picking the tea leaves, this hands-on experience is a fun way to learn about the ancient techniques that ensure the high quality of the region’s esteemed teas. Meals B+L|
Day 7 - Day 7 - Onward to Wuzhen + The Garden City of Suzhou
|Set along an ancient canal that stretches north from Hangzhou toward Beijing, Wuzhen is an enchanting water town famous for its centuries-old homes and shop-houses, now splendidly restored Ancient stone railings, picturesque courtyards and arching bridges of wood and stone add to the evocative ambience. Not only the architecture, but the rhythms of daily life have also been preserved here – making Wuzhen a veritable living museum. Departing Hangzhou this morning, you’ll travel to this ancient town for a guided tour – and a step back into what life was like during the Ming Dynasty! Continue onward to Suzhou and check in to the first class Renaissance Hotel, where you’ll have time to refresh before dinner. Meals B+L+D|
Day 8 - Day 8 - Discover Suzhou
|Tour the exquisite Garden of the Master of the Nets. Originally laid out during the Song Dynasty 1,000 years ago, this classic Chinese garden is one of the city’s most refined with landscaped waterways, pavilions, meandering pathways and a delicate footbridge a mere 12 inches wide. The diminutive Inner Garden was the model for the Ming Hall Garden at the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York City.|
Explore other facets of Suzhou’s ancient history as you stroll along Pingjiang Road, graced with fine examples of Song Dynasty architecture. Then experience a popular Chinese pastime as you join city residents to fly a kite at the historic Panmen Gate. Learn how silk is made at a local workshop before traveling to Shanghai where you’ll check in to the landmark Fairmont Peace Hotel. Meals B+L
Day 9 - Day 9 - Out and about in Shanghai
|Today’s full-day sightseeing begins at the Shanghai Museum, highly regarded for its expansive collection encompassing thousands years of Chinese arts and culture - including ancient bronzes, celadon pottery, precious jade, Buddhist sculptures and exquisite Ming Dynasty furniture. Along the elegant waterfront Bund, you’ll learn about the impressive landmarks built more than a century ago by Japanese and European trading companies. Then fast-forward to the 21st century as you marvel at the iconic skyscrapers that dominate the vibrant Pudong District – including the soaring Jin Mao Tower and the futuristic silhouette of the Oriental Pearl Tower.|
Later stroll through Xintiandi's pedestrian only streets and explore the inviting galleries, shops and cafes of this historic district, where ancient stone buildings have been restored and given new life. This evening, you’ll gather with your fellow travelers for a congenial farewell dinner featuring Shanghai’s fine regional cuisine. Meals B+L+D
Day 10 - Day 10 - Depart Shanghai
|Your transfer to the airport is included. Meals B|
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