DAY 1, Thursday - Depart for China
Depart for China.
DAY 2, Friday - Arrive in Beijing
Arrive in Beijing, sprawling capital of modern China; meeting and transfer to your hotel. Remainder of the day is at leisure to rest, relax and acclimate to your new surroundings.
DAY 3, Saturday - Great Wall of China & Ming Tombs
Take a full day excursion to the Great Wall of China, the longest man-made structure on Earth, spanning nearly 4,000 miles of China's northern frontier. Stop at a local jade shop before arriving to the Great Wall. Walk along the promenades and enjoy the unrivaled scenic views of beautiful mountain passes, plateaus and grasslands from this 7th century defensive fortification. Afterward, you have lunch at a local restaurant. Continue for a walk through the site of Ming Tombs. Later, drive by the striking ultra-modern architectural site built for the 2008 Beijing Olympics, before returning to Beijing. Tonight, gather for a Welcome Dinner at a local restaurant. (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)
DAY 4, Sunday - Full Day in Beijing
Spend your day at leisure to explore Beijing on your own. Or, join the fascinating optional tour that includes the Forbidden City, Summer Palace and a visit to the Beijing Zoo to see the world-famous Pandas. Tonight, savor an optional Peking Duck dinner, the most culturally famous meal in China. (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)
Optional: Full Day Forbidden City, Summer Palace, Panda visit at Beijing Zoo with lunch.
Optional: Peking Duck Dinner,
DAY 5, Monday - Fly to Yichang, Embark Cruise
Morning optional tour to Beijing's unique Hutong area to absorb the culture and traditions of Old China, including a visit with a local family. Afterwards, transfer to the airport for your flight to Yichang. Upon arrival, continue to the port to board your ship on the Yangtze River and enjoy a buffet dinner on board. Set sail later this evening. Your next three days are going to be full of activities. There will be demonstrations on fresh water pearls and you will have the opportunity to join lectures on various topics, such as Chinese medicine, the Three Gorges and the Three Gorges Dam site. There will be evening entertainment beginning tomorrow. You will receive a full itinerary upon embarkation. (Breakfast, Dinner)
Optional: Half Day Hutong Tour (AM).
DAY 6, Tuesday - Xiling Gorge
This morning begin sailing upstream through Xiling Gorge. Today's optional excursion visits the Three Gorges Dam near Sandouping Village. This dam is the largest hydroelectric dam in the world, nearly six times the size of the Hoover Dam. Continue sailing through Xiling Gorge, the longest section of the Three Gorges system, which is comprised of the rapids of Xietan, Qingtan and Kongling, collectively known as the Three Rapids of Xiling. (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)
Optional: Yangtze River Shore Excursion Package - Three Gorges Dam.
DAY 7, Wednesday - Wu Gorge, Qutang Gorge
Enjoy spectacular views of the surrounding mountain passes as you sail through the 25-mile long Wu Gorge, famous for its fabled Twelve Peaks. According to legend, the peaks are believed to be the spirits of 12 fairies, the most famous of them being the Shennu Feng (Goddess) Peak, which is topped by a huge rock resembling a kneeling maiden. Today, your optional tour will take you either on a scenic journey up Shennong Stream, traveling in small boats between rolling hills and rocky cliffs or. on a scenic journey up Shennv Stream, the journey is accompanied by local folk songs and dances. Continue through the Qutang Gorge, the smallest of the three Yangtze gorges, and admire its bluffed banks and lush terraced hillsides. (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)
Optional: Yangtze River Shore Excursion Package - Shennong Stream.
DAY 8, Thursday - Cruise to Fengdu
The ship arrives this morning at Fengdu, with its 1,900 years of history. Today's optional shore excursion will visit the Jade Emperor Scenic Area. The sacred site lies on the northern side of the Yangtze River and west of Mingshan Mountain. It features a 100-foot-tall statue depicting the Jade Emperor, an important deity in Chinese Taoism, as well as 208 additional holy statues of deities. You will also encounter exquisite pagodas, pavilions, and terraces. Time to relax on board after your return to the ship. (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)
Optional: Yangtze River Shore Excursion Package - Fengdu
DAY 9, Friday - Flight to Shanghai
Disembark the cruise in Chongqing and transfer to the airport for your flight to Shanghai, the fastest growing city in Asia, with its dramatic ever-changing skyline. Upon arrival, transfer to your hotel. The balance of the day is at leisure. (Breakfast)
DAY 10, Saturday - Yuyuan Garden & Bund
Today, visit the classical Yuyuan Garden, built during the Ming Dynasty by the high-ranking government official Pan Yunduan. In existence for 400 years, the Gardens were specifically constructed for Pan's aging parents as a sanctuary in which to live out their lives. Enjoy a stop at a local silk carpet and embroidery shop and then experience the old world charm of the Bund, the former "Wall Street" of the foreign powers. Walk along its park-like waterfront promenade between the Wusong River and Old Town. Tonight, gather for a Farewell Dinner at a local restaurant. (Breakfast, Dinner)
DAY 11, Sunday - Depart China
Transfer to the airport for your departure flight. (Breakfast)