China, Tibet & the Yangtze
Featured Excursions: Tiananmen Square, Forbidden City, hutongs tour with home-hosted lunch, and Peking duck Welcome Dinner with complimentary wine
Your first full day in Beijing takes you to Tiananmen Square, which is both a center of contemporary civic life in Beijing and the gateway to the Forbidden City, a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Next, you’ll take a rickshaw ride through the hutongs, the historic neighborhoods of Old Beijing. A local family will invite you into their home for lunch. Later in the evening, you’ll enjoy a Welcome Dinner of succulent Peking duck, a signature dish of the city, with wine.
Featured Excursions: The Great Wall and Kung Fu show at Beijing’s Red Theatre
Walk along the UNESCO-designated Great Wall. Later in the evening, be treated to a mesmerizing show that combines kung fu prowess with acrobatics and dance; it’s the best performance in town.
Featured Excursions: Temple of Heaven, Beijing Zoo with giant panda visit, and traditional dumpling banquet
The Temple of Heaven is a UNESCO-designated site that dates back to the 15th century. A masterpiece of architectural and landscape design, it influenced architecture throughout China for centuries. Next, you’ll visit the giant pandas at the Beijing Zoo.
After lunch, you’ll fly to the ancient city of Xi’an, where you’ll settle into the Shangri-La Xi’an hotel before heading to a local restaurant to feast on the delicious dumplings that are a specialty of the region.
Featured Excursions: Museum of the Terra-cotta Warriors and Horses, City Wall, and Tang Dynasty dinner show
Visit the museum that is home to over 8,000 life-sized Terra-cotta Warriors and Horses. You’ll then see the ancient city wall built to protect Xi’an from invaders. In the evening, indulge in a dinner and cultural performance that re-creates the music, folk dances, and traditional costumes of the Tang Dynasty.
Fly to Lhasa, the ancient cultural and religious center of Tibet, and check into the supremely comfortable Shangri-La Lhasa hotel, where you’ll enjoy dinner in the evening.
Featured Excursions: Jokhang Temple and Tibet Museum
See the holiest site in Tibet: gold-domed Jokhang Temple, a UNESCO World Heritage Site that contains a seventh-century statue of Buddha. Tour the rich collection of prehistoric artifacts at the Tibet Museum. Visit a Lhasa family’s home, and then savor dinner accompanied by a traditional folk show.
Featured Excursions: Potala Palace and Sera Monastery
The vast, UNESCO-designated Potala Palace is exceptionally well-preserved. Wander through its chapels as pilgrims make offerings at thousand-year-old altars, and admire the religious paintings called thangkas. From here, you’ll head off to see Sera Monastery’s colorful murals and mandalas.
Fly to Chongqing, where you’ll head to the dock and board your elegant ship.
Featured Excursion: Shibao Pagoda
Mist-shrouded peaks loom above the winding Yangtze for miles as you cruise through the Three Gorges region. Every view is a picture straight out of China’s iconic watercolor illustrations. Your ship will stop at the Shibao Pagoda, a colorful 12-story temple built into the side of a hill that is now an island as a result of the rising waters from the Three Gorges Dam. Enjoy a Captain’s Welcome Reception with complimentary wine in the evening.
Featured Excursion: Three Gorges Dam
Before you disembark in Yichang, you’ll tour the world’s largest hydroelectric project, the Three Gorges Dam, which supplies power to millions of people. Following your visit, you’ll fly to Shanghai. Settle into your lovely room in the Pudong Shangri-La and relax over a buffet dinner
at your hotel.
Featured Excursions: Shanghai city tour, dim sum lunch, and Shanghai Acrobats performance
Shanghai, located at the mouth of the Yangtze, has been a trading center for 400 years. Today, it’s an economic dynamo with one of the busiest ports in the world. Stroll along the Bund, Shanghai’s famed waterfront promenade, and take in its historic buildings and its spectacular view of the high-rises that typify China’s largest city. Savor a dim sum lunch at the Pudong Shangri-La; then take some time to browse through the district’s unique shops. In the evening, prepare to be dazzled by the world-renowned Shanghai Acrobats.
Transfer to the airport for your flight home, or continue your adventure with one of our memorable optional extensions.