7 days Beijing highlights tour with Yangtze River cruise
Start with a Beijing Highlights tour, followed by a Yangtze cruise from Chongqing to Yichang. Discover the traditional Chinese culture by visiting the famous heritages in Beijing. Along with a dreamlike experience as you sail through the Three Gorges and view the fabulous scenery. An added bonus of this tour is a stop at the Three Gorges Dam before you disembark in Yichang.
Upon arrival at Beijing airport or railway station, be greeted and assisted to the hotel by your local guide and driver. Have the rest of the day to explore this capital city on your own. As a famous ancient city in China, Beijing balances the traditional culture with modern city life, making it one of the must-see cities for those who want to travel in China.
The trip starts today as you head to the magnificent Tiananmen Square in the morning. Regarded as the largest public square in the world, Tiananmen Square can accommodate up to a million people to hold ceremonies. Afterwards, continue to the Forbidden City, which is located at the north end of Tiananmen Square. Divided into tow courts, this gorgeous palace served as the workplace for the emperors to cope with political affairs (Outer Court), as well as a living space for royal families (Inner Court) for almost 500 years. While walking along the majestic stone walkways and seeing the complex wooden structures, you can feel the power of both imperial and divine.
In the afternoon, drive to the Temple of Heaven, where the emperors during Ming and Qing dynasties came every winter solstice to worship Heaven a good harvest. Listed as a World Heritage Site by UNESCO, the Tempe of Heaven is a masterpiece of architecture and landscape design due to the unique triple-gabled circular buildings. Spend couple hours to explore here before you enjoy an exciting Chinese Kong Fu Show in the evening.
Make a day excursion to the amazing Great Wall at Mutianyu section in the morning. The drive takes about 2.5 hours to the northeast suburb. Upon arrival, spend 2 to 3 hours to hike along this priceless heritage left by Chinese ancestry. The Wall was well designed and built in accordance with the local geographical features, and it is hard to believe the ancient people could made such a great project without modern machines and equipment.
On the way back from Mutianyu, stop at the Ming Tomb to visit Changling, the final resting place for the third emperor in Ming dynasty. Have a walk along the Sacred Way to learn about the funerary art of ancient imperial court in China. Afterwards, drive back to the hotel and prepare for the next day of your tour in Beijing.
This morning, first visit the Summer Palace, an imperial garden built in Qing dynasty. Mainly composed of Kunming Lake and Longevity Hill, Summer Palace presents a classical feature of the North China in terms of both garden design and architectures. It is also the largest and best preserved royal garden in China.
After that, head to the Shichahai Area for a cultural Hutong experience. See a 300 years old courtyard, and learn about the history, culture and layout of Beijing hutong from your English speaking guide.Talk with the local housekeepers to gain direct insight to these historical places. Do all this while experiencing the life of local Beijingers by taking the rickshaw through the Hutongs. After you are dropped off at the Silver Ingot Bridge (Yinding Bridge), walk along the old Tobacco Pipe Lean Street (Yandai Xiejie) which has over 800 years history, and stop at the Drum Tower to witness the surrounding Hutongs and traditional courtyards from an aerial view.
In the afternoon, head to the airport for the flight to Chongqing. Our local guide will meet you at the airport and drive you to the pier for the board. As the ship sails in the evening, your Yangtze cruise begins.
Enjoy the first day cruising on the Yangtze River, which is the longest and mightest river in China. See the spectacular scenery along the two banks and experience the Yangtze culture as it was an important cradle of Chiese ancient civilization. Disembark for a short visit at the Fengdu Ghost City, which is situated about 170 km. (110 mi.) downstream from Chongqing on the north bank of Yangtze River. The town is a place to learn about Chinese ghost culture, the afterlife, and to see what the Chinese would call a “model of hell.”. After walking around this ghost city and visiting several strange architectures with numerous statues of Chinese ancient ghosts, return to your ship and continue your journey on the river. The dinner will be offered on board.
Traveling through the spectacular Three Gorges is the highlight of today's journey. Start the passage with Qutang Gorge, where you can view the exquisite peaks and grotesquely shaped rocks on the way. Qutang Gorge is also considered as the shortest but the most majestic among the three gorges. Then pass the Wu Gorge, regarded as the most beautiful one where you will have a graceful view of the lofty and misty peaks.
Based on your requirement, be arranged to cruise on Little Three Gorges or take a pea-boat floating along the verdant Shennong Stream as you sail from Wu Gorges to Xiling Gorges. Then continue sailing into Xiling Gorges, the last section of Three Gorges of the downstream cruise.
End your memorable Yangtze Cruise with a visit to the Three Gorges Dam, the largest and most magnificent hydroelectric project in world. Then disembark from the ship in Yichang at noon, our guide will meet you once you disembark, and transfer you to the airport for the departure. Wish you have a pleasant journey home, and WindhoreseTour is ready to help adjust this tour in any way to better suite your personal travel needs.