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China Holidays

The Dynasty Tour

14 Night Itinerary from £ 3,806 3,477 $ 4,328

Private Individual Tour

Delve into China's Imperial past and hike the Great Wall away from the crowds. Discover Hong Kong beyond the skyscrapers and meet the iconic Terracotta Army.

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DYNASTIC HERITAGE, RURAL CHINA & EXOTIC CULTURE

Delve into China's Imperial past and hike the Great Wall away from the crowds. Discover Hong Kong beyond the skyscrapers and meet the iconic Terracotta Army.

Travel Highlights

  • Immerse yourself in China's imperial and communist past in Beijing
  • Hike an atmospheric section of the Great Wall of China, away from the crowds
  • Admire the intricate detail of the 8,000 strong Terracotta Army in Xi'an.
  • See baby pandas up close and visit the bustling parks of Chengdu
  • Come face-to-face with the 71 metre high Leshan Giant Buddha
  • Marvel at the majestic Longji Rice Terraces
  • Cruise down the Li River through the extraordinary karst landscape of Guilin
  • Ride the Bullet train and finish in exotic Hong Kong
  • Explore local markets, enjoy stunning views and visit tranquil islands
  • Includes all flights, trains, transfers, hotels, excursions & meals as shown
  • Click to get a tailored quotation based on this tour

Journey Breakdown

The Dynasty Tour
Travel Itinerary

Beijing & Great Wall Day 1 - 5

Day 1 - Fly to Beijing

Day 2 - Welcome to Beijing

Day 3 - Special tour: Beijing's Past & Present

Day 4 - Temple of Heaven & Hutong Tour

Day 5 - Hike the Great Wall

Itinerary Description

Day 1-2 - Welcome to Beijing - The private tour departs on a direct overnight flight from London, or via an alternative route at one of the major regional airports in the UK if you prefer. Arrive in Beijing in the morning and be welcomed upon arrival for transfer to your hotel. You will receive a walking orientation tour around your hotel with our guide, familiarising you with the surroundings and answering any questions you may have. The rest of the day is at leisure to relax, or you may prefer to add an afternoon tour.

Day 3 - Special tour: Beijing's Past & Present - Our special tour gives you an in-depth view of the the city's history, culture and modern life. We start amid the Communist-style buildings of Tiananmen Square and walk into the mythical Forbidden City, home to 24 Chinese Emperors. Here you can learn about China's dynastic past, before climbing Coal Hill for an overview of the central Beijing landscape. After lunch in a traditional hutong, enter the Confucius and Buddhist temples to understand China's two most important belief systems and their role in daily life. (B,L)

Day 4 - Temple of Heaven Park & Hutongs - We start at the Temple of Heaven, considered by UNESCO "a masterpiece of architecture and landscape design", to learn about Chinese philosophical beliefs, cosmogony, art, dynastic politics and sacrificial rituals. We visit early to gain wonderful insights into local life, as large groups of elderly Beijingers gather to take communal exercises, sing, socialise and play musical instruments. We take lunch at a family hutong home and then survey the traditional streets from the back of a rickshaw and on foot. Enjoy some cultural activities like calligraphy or paper cutting or perhaps attempt to cook the Chinese way by making some local dumplings. (B,L)

Day 5 - Hike the Great Wall - We drive two hours north of Beijing to access the iconic Great Wall of China to hike a wild section away from the crowds. Here we can truly appreciate its full majesty and savour stunning views of the surrounding mountains, taking the cable cars down from the restored part at Mutianyu, allowing you a look at the Wall in its original state. (B,L)

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Penta Hotel

Beijing & Great Wall - First Hotel

Described as a "neighbourhood lifestyle hotel", the Penta is a distinctive 4 star contemporary hotel, close to the Temple of Heaven and a short walk from the subway. The laid-back hotel offers 307 ensuite rooms in a minimalist style, including family rooms, as well as the use of bikes and maps to explore the local area. The heart of the hotel is the bustling Pentalounge; an all-encompassing café, deli, noodle bar, library and games area that provides a meeting place where guests and locals come and go.

Hotel Cote Cour

Beijing & Great Wall - First Boutique

The Cote Cour is a renowned boutique hotel spread out around a traditional inner courtyard and nestled in an historic centuries-old hutong. Fully refurbished in 2016, the rooms and communal areas are decorated to a high standard with classic paintings, furnishings and details, evoking a timelessness and a deep connection with the long history of the structures. You will find all the modern amenities that you will need during your stay, as well as an attentive service and free internet access and bicycle hire.

Guests can relax on the rooftop space and perhaps choose to dine in the a la carte restaurant. For families, there is both a standard and deluxe family room.

 

Regent Hotel

Beijing & Great Wall - Deluxe Hotel

A multi-award winning luxury hotel close to Tiananmen Square and shopping streets, providing guests with outstanding service in opulent surrounds. 500 spacious rooms and suites are elegantly finished in traditional Chinese style, whilst floor-to-ceiling windows fill the rooms with natural light and afford panoramic views, including of the Forbidden City from some. Connecting rooms are available for groups and there is a choice of renowned restaurants, as well as an indoor pool and wellness centre.

Xi'an & Terracotta Army Day 6 - 7

Day 6 - Bullet Train to Xi'an

Day 7 - See the 8,000 strong Terracotta Army

Itinerary Description

Day 6 - Bullet Train to Xi'an - Today you will be transported to Beijing West station for your high speed Bullet Train to the ancient city of Xi'an, a journey of around four and a half hours. Upon arrival you will be met by your guide and transferred to your hotel, with time at leisure in the afternoon. Once the starting point of the legendary Silk Road and a capital for eleven dynasties, Xi'an has retained a great deal of its mystique and boasts an impressive array of sights, which we will explore over the next two days. (B)

Day 7 - See the 8,000 strong Terracotta Army - We begin today with a visit to the famous Terracotta Army, just outside Xi'an. 8,000 individually sculptured clay warriors, horses and archers proudly stand shoulder-to-shoulder in three large excavated pits, protecting the tomb of China's first emperor, Qin Shihuang. At first it is the sheer number that overwhelms, but on closer inspection you begin to notice the extraordinary level of detail that went in to them, with each figure seemingly sporting a different expression and hairstyle. It's not hard to imagine this as a real army in waiting, awakening at the slightest hint of danger. Afterwards we can visit the home of the farmer who accidentally discovered the Terracotta Army.

In the afternoon we return to the city and explore the Muslim Quarter. We will visit a traditional courtyard mansion, owned by a former official during the Ming Dynasty. Dating back 400 years, the property shows the wonderful architectural style of the time and offers cultural activities and demonstrations including shadow puppetry and paper cutting. Following this there will be time to explore the temple and the lively food market. (B,L)

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Mercure on Renmin Square

Xian & Terracotta Army - First Hotel

The Mercure hotel has become a fixture of Renmin Square, alongside landscaped gardens and historic buildings. With over 100 well-equipped and tastefully decorated rooms and suites and a wonderful location right in the heart of ancient Xi'an, this 4 star hotel is a popular choice amongst visitors. It is a 15 minute walk from the bustling markets of the Muslim Quarter and the Drum and Bell Towers.

The hotels boasts its own restaurant, serving Western, Chinese, Japanese and Moroccan dishes, as well as a café and bar in which to relax.

Mercure on Renmin Square

Xian & Terracotta Army - First Hotel

The Mercure hotel has become a fixture of Renmin Square, alongside landscaped gardens and historic buildings. With over 100 well-equipped and tastefully decorated rooms and suites and a wonderful location right in the heart of ancient Xi'an, this 4 star hotel is a popular choice amongst visitors. It is a 15 minute walk from the bustling markets of the Muslim Quarter and the Drum and Bell Towers.

The hotels boasts its own restaurant, serving Western, Chinese, Japanese and Moroccan dishes, as well as a café and bar in which to relax.

Chengdu & Leshan Buddha Day 8 - 10

Day 8 - Bullet Train to Chengdu

Day 9 - Pandas & Dujiangyan Irrigation System

Day 10 - Come face-to-face with the 71m Giant Buddha

Itinerary Description

Day 8 - Bullet Train to Chengdu & time at leisure - Today you take the high speed Bullet Train to Chengdu, where you will be met upon arrival by your guide for the next few days and transferred to your hotel. You'll have today at leisure, perhaps to relax in the large People's Square, taking tea at one of the large outside teahouses and observing local life here. South of the river is the lively Jinli Street, lined with traditional buildings and shops and stalls selling locally created artwork, handicrafts, paper cuts and calligraphy. This is a great place to spend the afternoon shopping for gifts and souvenirs. (B)

Day 9 - Pandas & Dujiangyan Irrigation System -No visit to Chengdu would be complete without going to the nearby Panda Research Base - there is simply no better place to see these charming and highly endangered animals up close. Designed to replicate the natural bamboo habitat of the panda to encourage breeding, the centre is respected the world over for its ongoing research and conservation efforts, not just for the giant pandas, but also for red pandas and black swans. We visit early in the morning to see the baby pandas at their most active, returning to the city for midday.

From here we continue on to the Dujiangyan Irrigation System. This extraordinary UNESCO World Heritage site was originally constructed back in 256BC, during the Qin Dynasty. It is the oldest irrigation system in the world and is thought to be the only major system of its kind not to feature a dam.  Another major feat of engineering is the magnificent Anlan Suspension Bridge which crosses the river. Surrounding the irrigation system are a number of impressive temples, halls, towers, statues and gardens. (B,L)

Day 10 - Come face-to-face with the 71m Giant Buddha - Today we will drive around 2 hours south of Chengdu to visit the magnificent Leshan Giant Buddha. Measuring in at 71 metres high, the 1,200 year old Buddha watches over the confluence of three rivers and looks out onto the sacred Mount Emei. We will take a boat ride to enjoy panoramic views of the Buddha and then climb up the steps to come face-to-face with it, for a close up view. We will then return to Chengdu by road. (B,L)

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Buddha Zen

Chengdu & Pandas - First Hotel

Located close to the Wenshu Yuan Monastery, this spiritually themed 4 star hotel aims to give visitors an insight into traditional Buddhist life. It offers 35 tranquil rooms and well-equipped rooms, all thoughtfully and elegantly decorated in a style true to the spirit of the hotel. The courtyard-style building is filled with ancient paintings and statues and small details that are full of hidden meaning.

The Buddha Zen also invites guests to take a traditional 'Zen' afternoon tea in the  Jian Cha Teahouse and unwind in the harmonious Zi Zai spa, havens of peace and tranquillity in one of China's biggest cities.

The Ritz-Carlton

Chengdu & Pandas - Deluxe Hotel

As you might expect from a Ritz-Carlton, this hotel delivers luxury and service on an unparalleled level in Chengdu. Its collection of spacious and stylish rooms all offer fine city views of Chengdu's skyscrapers and offer a host of facilities and features including:

  • Twice-daily housekeeping attention
  • LCD TVs (at least 42 inches)
  • Exclusive Asprey bath amenities
  • Blu-ray disc/DVD player
  • iPod/iPhone/iPad docking station
  • In-bathroom TV
  • Bathtub and separate shower
  • Illuminated cosmetic mirror, hair dryer and scale
  • TOTO intelligent toilet
  • Ritz-Carlton signature linens and feather bedding
  • Plush terry robes
  • Walk-in closet
  • Complimentary overnight shoeshine
  • Fully stocked mini refreshment bar
  • Complimentary high-speed wired- and wireless Internet access
  • Multi-line telephone with voicemail
  • Nespresso coffee machine
  • In-room safe

Guests can enjoy a choice of glamorous bars and four award-winning restaurants, including the renowned Li Xuan, which serves outstanding Cantonese & Sichuan-style cuisine. The large Ritz-Carlton Spa and Fitness Center complex includes an indoor swimming pool with underwater music and offers their signature tea-themed treatments.

Guilin & Longji Rice Terraces Day 11-12

Day 11 - Spectacular caves & drive to Rice Terraces

Day 12 - Cruise past the karst peaks along the Li River

Itinerary Description

Day 11 - Spectacular caves & drive to Rice Terraces - Take an AM flight to Guilin, where you stay for two nights. Today we will drive two hours through the mountains to explore the incredible Longji Rice Terrace landscape, enjoying the best panoramic vistas of the area and learning about local life here. The landscape changes throughout the year, depending on the seasons. In spring, the terraces are irrigated and so brim with water, before turning lush green over the summer. The autumn brings beautiful golden hues, before snow falls add to the drama in winter. Lunch is included, before transferring back to Guilin by road. (B,L)

Day 12 - Cruise past the karst peaks along the Li River - The highlight of a trip to Guilin is the chance to drift down the Li River to Yangshuo, passing through the infinite limestone sugarloaf peaks which rise dramatically out of the ground, so creating one of the most arresting vistas in the country. Bamboo groves and paddy fields line the river's edge, where we can also observe water buffalo and local peasants working the land. Lunch is included on-board. Return to Guilin by road late afternoon. (B,L)

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Guilin Bravo

Guilin & Yangshuo - First Hotel

Located on the edge of Ronghu Lake, a ten minute walk to the city centre, the Guilin Bravo hotel offer 329 spacious and well-appointed ensuite rooms and suites. Of these, 160 have lake views and all enjoy good modern facilities. There is a sauna and outdoor swimming pool, as well as an attractive patio cafe and bar area and two restaurants offering dim sum and other Chinese specialities for those looking to dine in.

There are a large number of shops and restaurants nearby on the popular pedestrianised streets, as well as the night market.

Shangri-La Guilin

Guilin & Yangshuo - Deluxe Hotel

The Shangri-la's spacious and elegant rooms, which look out over landscaped gardens, the Li River and the famous karst landscape of the region, offer modern facilities, welcoming bedding and marble-floored luxury bathrooms. Panoramic windows afford stunning views and the landscape outside is reflected in the intricate murals that decorate many rooms 

Two swimming pools, a fitness centre, a games room and a tennis court provide leisure opportunities, whilst guests can unwind in the spa or with an evening stroll in the gardens. The Signature Shang Palace restaurant serves up cuisine from both the local area and across China, whilst western food is also available in a second on-site restaurant.

Hong Kong Day 13 - 16

Day 13 - Welcome to Hong Kong

Day 14 - Special 'local life' Hong Kong tour

Day 15 - Tranquil islands or Portuguese heritage

Day 16 - Time at leisure & return flight to UK

Itinerary Description

Day 13 - Welcome to Hong Kong - Today you will fly from Chengdu to Hong Kong, where you will be met on arrival for a private transfer into the city to your hotel. Hong Kong offers a great mix of exoticism and familiarity. It is perhaps the easiest city for western travellers to get about it, travelling on the efficient MTR underground system, which reaches as far as some of the outlying islands. You will enjoy a day at leisure to perhaps take the iconic Star Ferry across the water to Hong Kong Island. Here you can ride the tram to The Peak, for one of the world's great urban vistas, especially as the sun goes down and the light's begin to twinkle at dusk. (B,L)

Day 14 - Special 'local life' Hong Kong tour - We start in the thriving markets of Mong Kok; the bird market, where locals often gather to socialise with their birds sat next to them in cages, then the goldfish market to admire the amazing colour and detail of the tropical fish on sale here, often at extremely high prices. Next is the Chinese Jade Market and the fruit market, followed by a visit to the Tin Hau Temple, dedicated to the Goddess of the Sea, revered by fishermen and those who spend their working lives at sea.

We then drive to the south of Hong Kong Island to the Aberdeen fishermen community, where fishing junks are juxtaposed against the skyscrapers. We take a short sampan boat ride to learn more about their ways of life and enjoy a dim sum lunch aboard the famous Aberdeen Jumbo Kingdom. Next up is the Central business district and the world's longest continuous escalator system. Hollywood Road in westernised district of SoHo is next, known for its antique shops. Finally, we finish at the Man Mo Temple, one of Hong Kong's oldest and most important and where giant incense coils hang from the ceiling, imparting a fragrant, smoky haze. The temple is dedicated to the God of Literature and the God of War. (B,L)

Day 15 - Hong Kong at leisure - tranquil islands or Portuguese heritage - Taking the ferry across the water to Macau, a bastion of Portuguese heritage, is an excellent day trip, as is a visit to the tropical and tranquil Lamma Island, reached by boat from Aberdeen fishing harbour in the south. Closer yet is Lantau Island, famed for its large seated Buddha and temple, reached by a panoramic cable car. At the far end of the island, Tai O is an immensely charming and timeless fishing village, whilst one of the region's best beaches can be enjoyed a short bus ride away at Cheung Sha. (B)

Day 16 - Time at leisure & return flight to UK - Your return flight will likely be at around 11pm, giving you another full day of sightseeing or shopping. You will be picked up and transferred to the airport in plenty of time for your overnight return flight to the UK. (B)

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Hotel Stage

Hong Kong & Macau - First Hotel

Hotel Stage exudes contemporary and creative charm, a welcoming haven from the busy streets of Kowloon. Spacious and minimalist rooms offer a range of modern facilities, including a complimentary smart phone which you can carry about the city to browse the internet, consult maps, make international calls and even supply WIFI for your own devices.

The hotel is a few minutes walk from the Jordan MTR station, allowing easy access to Hong Kong Island, and is also close to the vibrant night market and the many other fascinating markets of Mong Kok.

Freshly cooked breakfasts are prepared to order and the hotel also offers a renowned kitchen and stylish wine bar, gallery and book area.

InterContinental Grand Stanford

Hong Kong & Macau - Deluxe Hotel

Conveniently situated in the south of Kowloon, overlooking the iconic Victoria Harbour and close to an MTR station, the InterContinental is a renowned 5 star hotel. 572 luxurious rooms and suites afford harbour, courtyard or city views and come equipped with all the necessary amenities you'll need, including a handy smart phone. Guests can relax on the outdoor rooftop pool, indulge in the beauty and health facilities and dine on Cantonese or Italian cuisine.

Travel Details
Dynasty

Price Breakdown

Prices are per person. Please request a quote for Special Events, Christmas, New Year's Eve & Chinese New Year.

Season Low Season High Season
Travel Dates 03/10 - 15/06 16/06 - 02/10
Room Arrangement Tourist First Deluxe Tourist First Deluxe
Multiple Travellers - Twin Room - £3,806 £4,428 - £4,130 £4,803
Multiple Travellers - Own Room - + £532 + £942 - + £652 + £1,110
Single Traveller - Own Room - + £1,500 + £2,218 - + £1,621 + £2,387
Season Low Season High Season
Travel Dates 03/10 - 15/06 16/06 - 02/10
Room Arrangement Tourist First Deluxe Tourist First Deluxe
Multiple Travellers - Twin Room - €3,476 €4,192 - €4,782 €5,724
Multiple Travellers - Own Room - + €613 + €1,083 - + €-182 + €176
Single Traveller - Own Room - + €1,726 + €2,551 - + €932 + €1,645
Season Low Season High Season
Travel Dates 03/10 - 15/06 16/06 - 02/10
Room Arrangement Tourist First Deluxe Tourist First Deluxe
Multiple Travellers - Twin Room - $4,328 $5,199 - $4,782 $4,803
Multiple Travellers - Own Room - + $745 + $1,319 - + $913 + $2,476
Single Traveller - Own Room - + $2,100 + $3,105 - + $2,270 + $4,263

Booking Terms & Conditions

What's Included

  • International return flights
  • 1 internal flight as shown
  • Bullet Train tickets as described in itinerary (First = 2nd class, Deluxe = 1st class)
  • 14 nights accommodation as shown on the itinerary
  • Meals as described on the itinerary
  • Transfers to and from airport
  • Excursions listed, all with expert, English-speaking guides and private vehicle
  • Prices are per person based on two sharing a room
  • Guideline price only - please request a bespoke itinerary for an accurate quote

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