Discover China’s past and present — from historic Beijing to the bustling metropolis of Shanghai. Visit the iconic Terra Cotta Warriors and giant pandas, and explore the storied Yangtze River on an all-balcony river cruiser.
Day 1 - Arrive Beijing, China
Arrive in the capital city and transfer to your luxurious hotel.
Day 2 - Beijing
Start the day with a tai chi class at the Temple of Heaven, a stunning example of classical Ming period architecture. Explore historic Tiananmen Square, one of the world’s largest public squares and a site of great political significance. Visit the Forbidden City, China’s former imperial palace, now a vast museum housing imperial treasures.
Day 3 - Beijing
Ride a pedicab through a hutong, a vast yet intimate neighborhood of small winding alleyways dating to China’s dynastic period. Then, travel to the well-preserved Mutianyu section of the Great Wall of China. Enjoy lunch at a local restaurant, before riding a cable car to the top of the wall, where you can take in sweeping views of the surrounding mountains.
Day 4 - Xian
Fly this morning to Xian at the eastern terminus of the Great Silk Road. After lunch, walk through the Muslim Quarter and see the Great Mosque.
Day 5 - Xian
Visit the excavation site of the Terra Cotta Warriors and Horses, the life-size army created during the Qin Dynasty to protect China’s first emperor in his afterlife. Later, explore Xian’s impressive City Wall, with the option to stroll along its ramparts.
Day 6 - Chengdu
Travel by high-speed train to Chengdu. Upon arrival, enjoy a special Sichuan hot pot lunch, and then immerse yourself in local life and culture at the People’s Park, where area residents play traditional Chinese instruments, practice calligraphy and engage in tai chi. The remainder of the day is yours to enjoy at leisure.
Day 7 - Chengdu & Chongqing
Visit the Chengdu Panda Breeding and Research Center, where you experience the rare opportunity to observe these endangered creatures roaming freely in their specially designed habitat. Then, travel by high-speed train to Chongqing and board your comfortable river cruiser for a three-night journey through the scenic Three Gorges region.
Day 8 - Cruising the Yangtze
Begin the day with tai chi on deck and take a private shore excursion to Fuling, for a visit to the 816 Underground Project or the White Crane Ridge Underwater Museum. Back on board, enjoy a Chinese medicine demonstration and a lesson on the art of Chinese foot reflexology. Tonight, attend the Captain’s Reception, followed by dinner.
Day 9 - Cruising the Yangtze
Cruise the Qutang and Wu gorges, and then anchor at Badong, where you board a ferry and travel up Shennong Stream. Disembark to board local “peapod” boats poled by skilled Tujia boatmen, members of a local minority culture famed for their boat-building skills and keen knowledge of the Yangtze. Later, cruise the Xiling Gorge and enjoy a “Taste of China” dinner.
Day 10 - Yichang & Shanghai
This morning, disembark and stop over near the Three Gorges Dam. Following time for a photo opportunity, fly to Shanghai and transfer to your luxury hotel on the Bund. The balance of the afternoon and evening are at leisure.
Day 11 - Shanghai
Explore dynamic Shanghai, where stunning modern skylines meet classic street markets and gardens. Head to the observation deck of the Shanghai Tower, where you are treated to a bird’s-eye view of the Huangpu River, the Bund, and Shanghai’s panorama of skyscrapers. Relax with the remainder of the morning at leisure. This afternoon enjoy one of these Design Your Day activities.
Walk Shanghai’s Historic Jewish Quarter and learn how it became a haven for Jews fleeing Europe in World War II.
Enjoy a Shopping Excursion to the trendy French Concession to browse the superb selection of artisan shops and navigate the maze of shikumen homes.
Cycle through Pudong, exploring Shanghai's newest district filled with gleaming skyscrapers.
Day 12 - Shanghai
Today, walk along the Bund, Shanghai’s most popular promenade, and then explore the Shanghai Museum on a privately led tour accompanied by a curator, viewing exceptional collections of historically significant art and housewares, including bronzes, ceramics, jade, furniture and coins. Savor lunch at a local restaurant, and later stroll the streets of Old Town and visit the 16th-century Yu Garden, with its pavilions and ponds.
Day 13 - Depart Shanghai
After breakfast, transfer to the airport to board your departing flight.