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Cultural China & Yangtze River Gold Experience

18 days with Pacific Delight  Rating: Deluxe

River Cruise Itinerary
Day 1 • Depart USA
Depart USA and cross the international dateline.
Day 2 • Arrive Beijing
Arrive at your FiveStarPlus® accommodations.
Day 3 • Beijing 
This morning, see Tiananmen Square and the extravagant Ming-era Imperial Palace in the Forbidden City   featuring the living quarters, museum and the jewelry sections. The entire complex covers 74 hectares (183 acres) and consists of over 8,000 rooms. The exhibition halls and vaults hold some one million treasures at one of the most important museums in all of China. This afternoon, tour Beijing’s 700-year-old Hutongs (“narrow lanes”) area by old-fashioned pedicab. Climb up the Drum Tower and see a traditional drum performance. Visit a local family living in a courtyard-style home known as a Siheyuan. In the evening, enjoy dinner at your hotel. (AB, L, DH)
Day 4 • Beijing 
Today, experience a highlight of your trip, as you visit the renowned Great Wall. On the way, if traffic allows, stop to photograph the iconic “Bird’s Nest”—the Beijing National Stadium—host to many spectacular events of the 2008 Summer Olympics. Then, arrive at the amazing Great Wall and walk along its ramparts as emperors once did.   After lunch, visit a jade factory, where you will learn about different types of jade and its properties. Jade is well known throughout China for its durability, musical qualities, its subtle, translucent colors, and its alleged  protective powers. Later, visit Summer Palace declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1998. You may enjoy a boat ride on the man-made Lake Kunming (weather permitting). This evening, sample one of the famous dishes of the imperial family—the Beijing Duck at DaDong Restaurant which Michelle Obama visited in 2014. (AB, L, D)
Day 5 • Beijing / Xi'an 
This morning, visit the exquisite 15th-century Temple of Heaven. See the Imperial Ceiling of Heaven with its Echo Wall and the Nine-Dragon Cypress, more than 500 years old. This afternoon, fly to historic Xi’an, ancient capital of China and site of many archeological treasures. (AB, D)
Day 6 • Xi'an
See the extraordinary Terracotta Warriors and the Bronze Chariot buried with Emperor Qin Shi Huang for more than 2,000 years and discovered by farmers in 1974; followed by a viewing of the 360-degrees circle-vision movie (movie subject to availability). Afterward, visit Beiyuanmen Muslim Street and the Grand Mosque. The local market offers a great selection of Chinese-Muslim cuisine and craftsmanship. In the afternoon, enjoy a dumpling lunch and a noodle-making demonstration. This evening’s highlight is a traditional performance of music and dance from the Tang Dynasty period. (AB, L, DS)
Day 7 • Xi’an / Chongqing: Yangtze Cruise
Today, fly to Chongqing, a picturesque mountain city. Upon arrival, visit Chongqing Zoo to see China's national animal the Giant Panda (feed the pandas if time permits) and the old town area of Chi Chi Kou (also if time permits). Later, board your Victoria Cruises ship for an unforgettable cruise along the Yangtze River (Port Authority Requirement: boarding begins at 6:00pm). (AB, L, D)
Day 8 • Yangtze Cruise: Shibaozhai
Disembark in Shibaozhai with its impressive wooden pagoda, appropriately named “The Pearl of the Yangtze.” Depending on river conditions (if a visit to Shibaozhai is not possible), alternative shore excursion will be to Fengdu, the new resettlement town on the Yangtze’s south bank, or to the “Ghost City”. Later, return to your ship and continue sailing downstream. (AB, L, D)
Day 9 • Yangtze Cruise: Qutang Gorge / Small Gorges Excursion / Wu Gorge
After passing through Qutang Gorge, the shortest, narrowest and most dramatic of the Three Gorges, disembark for an excursion via cruiser up Goddess Stream with its scenic, narrow gorges, while listening to local folk songs. Alternatively, your excursion may be on Shennong Stream with its splendid Small Gorges. Sail into the 25-mile-long Wu Gorge celebrated for its Twelve Peaks and quiet beauty. Return to your ship and continue sailing downstream. (AB, L, D)
Day 10 • Yangtze Cruise: Xiling Gorge / San Dou Ping / Yichang / Shanghai 
This morning, take a specially designed sightseeing boat through the recently completed, unique ship lock with a passenger ship lift, the world’s largest. Then, visit the Three Gorges Dam which spans the Yangtze River at San Dou Ping—it is the world’s largest power station. Return to the ship and sail through Xiling Gorge, the most scenic of the gorges. Continue sailing on to Maoping, where you will disembark and transfer to the airport in Yichang for your flight to Shanghai. (AB)
Day 11 • Shanghai
Today, see Shanghai’s highlights including Shanghai Museum, Yu Garden, the old town, the city’s colonial European past at the Bund, the modern Xintiandi and a renowned Shanghai silk factory. This evening, enjoy dinner at your hotel and later attend an astonishing performance of the world-famous Shanghai acrobats. (AB, L, DH)
Day 12 • Shanghai 
Enjoy today at leisure. If you’d like, book an optional tour. (AB)
Day 13 • Shanghai / Guilin
Today, fly to Guilin, where you will explore one of its local minorities and the “Palace of Natural Arts”—Reed Flute Cave’s stalactites, stalagmites, stone pillars and stone curtains in shapes of birds, plants and animals, all glistening in colorful lights. This evening, enjoy dinner at your hotel. (AB, L, DH)
Day 14 • Guilin / Yangshuo / Guilin
Today, enjoy a scenic cruise along the Li River with a stopover in Yangshuo, a small county diverse in culture and exotic flavors. The remainder of the day is at leisure. This evening, see the enchanting “Liu San Jie” light show, a love story involving more than 500 performers. Return to Guilin for overnight. (AB, L, D)
Day 15 • Guilin / Hong Kong
Today, fly to Hong Kong. Upon arrival, meet with our representative for private transfer to your luxury accommodations. Situated on China's southern coast and enclosed by the Pearl River Delta and the South China Sea, this island is a complete mix of eastern and western influences, promising a beautiful skyline set along the harbor. (AB)
Day 16 • Hong Kong
Visit Stanley Market, a must-go place to do some-last minute souvenir shopping; followed by Repulse Bay, a beautiful stretch of crescent-shaped sand and a popular beach for locals and tourists alike. Later, board a sampan (seat-in-coach) for a cruise to Aberdeen, a floating community, where traditional fishermen still reside. A panoramic view of the city from Victoria Peak will bring your private island tour to a close. (AB)
Day 17 • Hong Kong
Enjoy today at leisure. If you’d like, book an optional tour. (AB)
Day 18 • Depart Hong Kong
After breakfast, prepare to bid farewell to China and Hong Kong, as you board your departing flight home/onward. (AB)
Tour Map
All This Included
Experience historic Beijing, ancient Xi'an, cosmopolitan Shanghai, a scenic Yangtze River luxury cruise, and the beautiful landscapes of Guilin and Hong Kong.
  • Guaranteed land/cruise with 2 passengers
  • A group size of 10 or more participants will be escorted from arrival in China by a professional bilingual Tour Director
  • English speaking guides with Quiet Vox sound systems in pre-selected cities
  • Historical sightseeing and UNESCO World Heritage Sites
  • Onboard lectures, entertainment, Tai Chi and Chinese language lessons, Captain's cocktail party and farewell banquet
  • Performances: Tang Dynasty Show, Shanghai Acrobatics, Liu San Jie Light Show
  • Free WiFi in all hotels
  • All meals: 16 breakfast, 9 lunches, 10 dinners with special culinary experience Beijing Duck dinner
  • Some dinners in hotels
  • 5 Intra-China flights
  • All port charges
  • USTOA $1 Million Travelers Assistance Program
Accommodations on this Tour
Beijing: The Ritz-Carlton
Xi'an: Shangri-La
Cruising: Cabin onboard Victoria Jenna
Shanghai: The Portman Ritz-Carlton
Guilin: Shangri-La
Hong Kong: Kowloon Shangri-La
  • Preferred accommodations subject to change to similar class accommodations.
  • No seat-in-coach transfers to and from Hong Kong airport between 9:00PM and 6:00AM local time. Please book your international flights to and from Hong Kong outside of those hours (account for 3 hours prior to departing flight for transfer.) Private transfers available 24/7 at additional cost.
  • Please ask your Vacations To Go travel counselor for more information.
Terms and Conditions

* The prices shown are U.S. dollars per person, based on double occupancy, and subject to availability. Prices quoted for land/cruise arrangements are subject to increase without notice. Once we have received your deposit, land/cruise prices are guaranteed. Air prices quoted via phone or email are subject to increase and are guaranteed only from the time that full payment is received. Also, air prices or air promotions mentioned on this site or on the phone do not include baggage fees imposed by airlines. Sorry, we are unable to offer air from countries other than the U.S. However, for those international customers who are able to arrange their own transportation to the trip origination city, we are able to offer the land/cruise portion of the package at the price quoted.

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