16 days South China minority tour from Beijing
Starting with a visit to the Great Wall in Beijing, This China minority tour balances a discovery to three highlight cities and an overland trip in Guizhou province, which is noted for its multi ethnic cultures. Experience the folk customs of Miao, Dong and other minorities by visiting several famous ethnic villages in this province. This tour help you get an in depth understanding of the minorities in West China.
Beijing, the capital of China, is the first destination of your 16 days south China minority tour. Upon arrival at the Beijing Capital Airport, be met and assisted to your hotel by your Beijing tour guide. Have the rest of the day to walk around this city on your own. Our guide will be glad to offer professional suggestions on where to go.
Start today with a visit to Tiananmen Square, which is the largest public square in the world. After a short stroll around the world's largest public square, you will head to the north and walk across the Golden Water Bridge to get to the Forbidden City, magnificent imperial Palaces of Ming and Qing dynasties for almost 500 years. Then climb up Jingshan Park to have a bird-view of Forbidden city.
After lunch, drive to visit Summer Palace, originally a royal garden and a temporary dwelling palace for emperors of Qing Dynasty. In the evening enjoy the Kongfu show after dinner. After, return to the hotel for retire.
Morning head to the Temple of Heaven, a place where the Emperors prayed for peace and harvest. After that, continue to make an excursion to the most beautiful section of the Great Wall, the Mutianyu Great Wall in the suburb of Beijing city. Upon arrival, spend 2 to 3 hours to hike along the walls. See the wall spreads over the majestic mountaintops and learn the history of this great ancient project from your local guide. Late afternoon, drive back to your hotel, rest is on your own.
After breakfast, drive to Shichahai Area, which is the old part of Beijing, First, you will have one hour tour of a 300-year-old courtyard. With the help of your guide, the housekeeper of the yard will give you a detailed explanation of the old courtyard (Siheyuan) - its history, its layout, its Fengshui, and its traditional Chinese culture involved. Then have about 1.5 hours' rickshaw tour driving through the narrow alleys (Hutong) to experience the real-life of local Beijing residents. Two people share one rickshaw. Drop off at the Silver Ingot Bridge (Yinding Bridge) and walk along the 800-year-old Yandai Xiejie ( Tobacco Pipe Lean Street ) to the Drum Tower. Visit the big drum tower and have a great view of the surrounding hutongs and traditional courtyards.
After lunch, transfer to Beijing railway station for the train to Xi'an. Upon arrival at Xi'an, to be met and transferred to your hotel. Overnight at Xi'an.
Today make an excursion to see the extraordinary 2,200-year-old Terracotta Warriors of China's first Emperor, Qin Shihuang, discovered in 1974 by farmers while digging a well. This archeological excavation site is a stunning exhibit of more than 7,000 ancient life-size terracotta statues of soldiers, officers, horses, chariots, and other artifacts.
After that, drive back to the downtown to visit the Big Wild Goose Pagoda. Later then, visit the Great Mosque and have some free time to explore for some souvenirs or antiques in the Bazaar near the Mosque. In the evening after the local specialty, Dumpling Banquet as dinner, enjoy the splendid Tang Dynasty Music and Dance Show. Then return to your hotel to retire.
The morning, have a half-day tour, you will be arranged to visit Shanxi Provincial Historic Museum (considered one of the best museums in China houses of more than 300,000 items including murals, paintings, pottery and bronze objects), and Xi'an City Wall (the best preserved in the world). Afterward, have a wander on the famous Shuyuanmen Culture Street to appreciate the delicate traditional art crafts if time allows. After lunch, transfer to Xi'an airport for the flight to Guiyang. Upon arrival at Guiyang airport, to be met and assisted to your hotel.
In the morning, visit the Qingyan Old Town, which is a very small ancient town with only 3 square kilometers, here most houses and buildings still keep Ming and Qing Dynasty architecture style. Over 30 temples are other highlights in this town.
Afterwards, drive about 2 hours to Kaili. Kaili is called the town of Hundreds of Festivals as there are festivals every year here. Experience the most attractive ethnic culture and custom in China by visiting different minority villages. After lunch, you will visit Langde Long-skirt Miao Village and visit a local family there to get close to the local people's life. Meanwhile, you can appreciate the Miao people's typical architecture, Wooden Stilt House.
You will be driven to Shiqiao village to see traditional paper-making, then stop at Gaoyao terrace, one of the top 10 most beautiful terraces in China, to take some nice pictures.
Late afternoon, arrive at Rongjiang county. Rongjiang in Chinese means Banyan tree and river. As it is located in the meeting point of three rivers and there are many Banyan trees along the rivers. During your visit at Rongjiang, head to the Dali Dong village to explore the ethnic culture of this place, then return to the local best hotel of Rongjiang.
Drive to visit Yintan Dong Village. Here you will know another minority people's life, Dong People. A local family visit will be arranged for you. Then explore Basha Miao Village noted for men's hair dresses. In the afternoon, drive to Zhaoxing, visit the largest Dong People's Village in China. Upon arrival, get settled into the hotel.
Morning explore Tang'an Dong Village, noted as the first ecological museum of Dong people. Then drive to Sanjiang. Here you will arrive in Guilin Province. Visit the unique Chenyang Wind and Rain Bridge and explore the Dong villages nearby. Late afternoon, arrive at Longsheng, which bears abundant tourist resources. The Terraced Fields are the most highlights there. Stay at the Longsheng.
Longsheng Terraced Fields were first built in the Yuan dynasty and completed in the Qing dynasty by Zhuang people. The terraced fields are built along the slope winding from the riverside up to the mountaintop, with the highest place of an elevation of 885 m. (2,904 ft.) and the lowest 380 m. (1,247 ft.). Here some moderate climbing is involved, you'd better have comfortable walking shoes. Continue to visit the Yao People's Village in Longsheng. Afterward, drive to Guilin, the journey takes 3 hours, you will enjoy the beautiful scenery along the way. Check into your hotel. The remainder of the day is on your own.
Drive to Zhujiang Pier or Moupan Hill Pier and take a cruise down the Li River to Yangshuo which takes 3 to 4 hours. The cruise will give you an opportunity to see the most beautiful landscape in China, have lunch on board. Disembark the ship when arrival at Yangshuo, then get settled to your hotel in Yangshuo. Afternoon explore the lively street market or take a short bicycle trip to the countryside. You will also be arranged to visit one local villager's home to experience their lifestyle and customs.
Morning drive back to Guilin to visit the Reed Flute Cave and the Elephant Trunk Hill. Late afternoon drive to Guilin airport for the flight to Shanghai. Upon arrival at Shanghai airport, to be met and assisted to your hotel for the evening.
Today you will be arranged to visit Shanghai Museum, the first museum in China that meets international exhibition standard. It is in the possession of a collection of 123,000 cultural artifacts in 21 categories, mainly the exhibitions of painting, bronze, sculpture, ceramics, calligraphy, jade, Ming and Qing Dynasty furniture, coins, seals, and ethnic artwork. The bronze collection is said to be the best in the world.
Follow with a visit to the Shanghai Tower to have a bird view of Huangpu River; Afterwards drive to visit Yu Garden at the Old Quarter. It was built by the Pan family in the Ming Dynasty. Now it has been restored and become one of the most popular tourist sights in Shanghai. In the evening arrange you to stroll along the Nanjing Road to reach the famous bund area along the Huangpu River.
Today is left free for you to explore Shanghai on your own. You may spend the day shopping or just walking around to get a better understanding of Shanghai.
After breakfast, drive to the airport for your departure flight to the next destination.
Please Note: Shanghai has two airports: Hongqiao Airport, 15 km. (9 mi.) west of the center of Shanghai and Pudong Airport, which is30 km. (19 mi.) southeast of Shanghai. Please make sure you go to the right one for departure.