China Trailblazer


Take a journey like no other. This is your chance to see the classical sights, and also explore a different side of this beautiful country - be it from the back of a bicycle; on a hike through serene countryside, or a walk through buzzing city streets.

Places Visited

Ireland - Beijing (1N) - Gubei Watertown (1N) - Beijing (2N) - Xian (2N) - Yangtze River Cruise (4N) - Chengdu (3N) - Guilin (2N) - Yangshuo (2N) - Shanghai (2N) - Ireland

Days 1-2 Fly to Beijing
Fly overnight to Beijing, China's historical capital. Depending on your time of arrival the rest of the day is yours to start soaking up the local culture.
Days 1-2 Fly to Beijing
Day 3 Temple of Heaven
This morning visit Yandaixiejie where you’ll have some free time to wander the hutongs; these narrow alleys offer an authentic glimpse of the old Beijing before the emergence of high-rise buildings and modern commerce. Visit the Temple of Heaven and mingle with the locals as they take part in Tai Chi, dancing and card playing in a flurry of sociable activity you would never see in a park at home. Continue to the Summer Palace and explore the magnificent grounds, before taking a short hike up Longevity Hill to enjoy panoramic views. (B,L,D)
Day 3 Temple of Heaven
Day 4 Hike the Great Wall
Stroll across Tiananmen Square into the sprawling magnificence of the Forbidden City. Walking through this ornately designed complex offers an unsurpassed insight into China’s colourful past. Drive to Simatai Great Wall where you will ride up to the apex of the Wall by cable car to see the sunset. (B,L,D)
Day 4 Hike the Great Wall
Day 5 The Forbidden City
Travel to the Great Wall at Jinshanling, a section that is much less frequented by tourists than other parts. The stark yet magnificent surroundings allow you to put yourself in the shoes of those who walked this incredible structure hundreds of years ago. Your trek will last approximately four hours as the wall dramatically courses through spectacular landscapes and rugged terrain. Later, head back to Beijing, where you’ll have free time. (B,L)
Day 5 The Forbidden City
Day 6 Explore Ancient Xian
Fly to Xian, the ancient former capital. Explore the narrow and winding streets of the Muslim Quarter. Sample the delicious, freshly cooked snacks and gain an insight into the city’s fascinating culture and significance as the start of the Silk Road. The evening is at leisure - Defu Lane offers a vibrant atmosphere at night. (B,L)
Day 6 Explore Ancient Xian
Day 7 Terracotta Warriors and Muslim Quarter
Housed in three immense hangars, the ranks of the Terracotta Army stand sentinel in their subterranean necropolis, constructed to protect China's first Emperor in the afterlife. Gaze over the ranks of warriors and horses, each one unique, whilst your guide introduces you to these life-like soldiers' fascinating story. Continue to the ancient city wall for a cycle on the fortifications surrounding the heart of the city. Tonight feast on a traditional dumpling dinner (B,L,D)
Day 7 Terracotta Warriors and Muslim Quarter
Day 8 Cycle the City Walls
Fly to Wuhan and transfer to Yichang to board your Yangtze Cruise vessel, home for the next four nights. (B,L,D)
Day 8 Cycle the City Walls
Days 9-11 Yangtze Cruise
A man-made marvel, the Three Gorges Dam showcases this massive feat of engineering. As you cruise upstream nature takes over, revealing some of the world's most dramatic scenery including the Three Gorges Dam themselves. A three day voyage along China's riverine treasure is a chance to relax and enjoy a slower pace, whilst absorbing one breathtaking panorama after another. (B,L,D)
Days 9-11 Yangtze Cruise
Day 12 Ciqikou Ancient Town
Disembark your cruise vessel and enjoy an early lunch in the charming old town of Ciqikou - there's time to wander the cobbled alleyways and learn about its colourful history. Jump on the bullet train to Chengdu for an overnight stay (B,L,D)
Day 12 Ciqikou Ancient Town
Day 13 Tea Horse Road
Drive to Pingle Ancient Town. Dating back to the Han Dynasty, Pingle was a stopping point on the Tea Horse Road. Take time to walk through its maze of teahouse-lined streets before seeing the bamboo forest from above on Jinji Suspended Rope Bridge. Return to Chengdu. (B,L,D)
Day 13 Tea Horse Road
Day 14 Pandas at Dujiangyan
Visit one of the world’s finest panda conservation centres where you’ll gain a real insight into the hard work that goes into caring for and boosting the population of this endangered species. The pandas here are kept in conditions very close to their natural habitat. Later, ascend Mt Qingcheng, the most sacred Taoist mountain in China, by cable car. It is a truly beautiful spot with numerous lush, green peaks and secluded temples. Take a stroll among the mystic scenery of Yuecheng Lake. (B,L,D)
Day 14 Pandas at Dujiangyan
Day 15 Guilin's Pagodas
Take an early morning flight to Guilin. Take a walk around the picturesque Ronghu Lake and admire the Sun and Moon pagodas – two towering examples of traditional Chinese-Buddhist architecture. (B,L)
Day 15 Guilin's Pagodas
Day 16 Longji Rice Terraces
Travel to the misty, stepped hills of Longji. Today’s four-hour hike among the terraces will take you past small hamlets and picture-postcard views of the rice terraces which cover the landscape in intricate patterns. Whether full of water or bursting with rice plants, a walk in Longji provides an unforgettable experience of rural China. Return to Guilin. (B,L)
Day 16 Longji Rice Terraces
Day 17 Li River Cruise
Take a gentle cruise along the Li River to Yangshuo. Lined with the most dramatic, sci-fi style limestone cliffs on the planet, the serenity of life on the riverbanks is a wonderful sight.This evening, there is an option to be wowed by the light spectacular ‘Liu Sanjie'(B,L,D.)
Day 17 Li River Cruise
Day 18 Tai Chi and Countryside Cycling
Start the day with an invigorating session of Tai Chi, taking a class with a master to learn this ancient martial art. This afternoon, there is the option of riding a bicycle through the countryside or join a bamboo rafting trip along the Yulong River – another chance to really soak up the unspoiled surroundings of this exquisite location. (B,L)
Day 18 Tai Chi and Countryside Cycling
Day 19 Fly to Shanghai
Drive back to Guilin. Go from the serene to the supercharged as you fly to Shanghai. This evening, cruise down the Huangpu River being serenaded by the neon lights of Pudong. (B,L)
Day 19 Fly to Shanghai
Day 20 Shanghainese Shanghai
Wake up to the buzz of Shanghai, and take a breakfast walking tour between shimmering skyscrapers and traditional streets. Walk through the city’s most fascinating districts before enjoying breakfast as the locals do – sample pancakes, fried bread sticks and tofu. Visit the classical Yu Garden, the old town and the Silk Museum before taking an evening stroll along the Bund. Enjoy a farewell dinner of authentic Shanghainese cuisine. (B,L,D)
Day 20 Shanghainese Shanghai
Day 21 Fly Shanghai to Ireland
Fly to Ireland, arriving home the same or following day. (B)
Day 21 Fly Shanghai to Ireland

Also Available

Private Departures for this tour

If the dates we have available for this tour don't suit your needs, or you are not sure travelling as part of a group is for you, maybe a Private Departure would be more ideal. Based on exactly the same itinerary as the group tour, our Private Departures give you the freedom to choose your own departure date and simply enjoy your holiday with your family, your partner, or your friends. On most Private Departures your tour will be led by an English speaking driver and you will be met by local guides at each site.

Tailor Your Tour

If you like most of the itinerary which we have suggested but you'd like to change the route and the accommodation, speak to our specialist Tailormade team, who can build your perfect itinerary based around where you would like to go, what you would like to see and how much you'd like to spend. Just call us on 0800 9884 888 and we'll help plan your dream holiday.

Additional Price Information:

Based on Dublin departures
Flight upgrades available on request
Land only from €3690 (Beijing - Shanghai)
Single room from €840
Tipping paid locally RMB 1130

Wendy Wu Tours, inspect all of our hotels to ensure they meet the high levels of service which we require for our guests. If the hotels details below for your tour are not available, hotels of a similar standard will be used.

Jiangxi Grand Hotel
Jiangxi Grand Hotel - Beijing (3 Nights)
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Located in the Fentai District, the Jiangxi Grand Hotel is close to many of Beijing’s sites and attractions. Facilities at the hotel include a restaurant serving Chinese and Western cuisine, a coffee shop, a bar, a tea house and a fitness centre. The 322 rooms and suites are traditionally furnished with air conditioning, satellite television, tea making facilities, a minibar and a safety deposit box.



Jinshanling Hotel
Jinshanling Hotel - Jinshanling (1 Nights)
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The Jinshanling Hotel is a courtyard style hotel near the fantastic Jinshanling section of the Great Wall of China. The hotel is clean and peaceful, with all modern facilities. Enjoy a relaxing moment in your private courtyard as you admire the Beijing countryside.



YuLong International Hotel
YuLong International Hotel - Xi'an (2 Nights)
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Located 5 kilometers from the city downtown, Yulong International Hotel ,combines elegance and sophistication with first-class service. Facilities include three restaurants, a lobby bar, games room, beauty salon, fitness room and business centre. The 258 beautifully decorated and well-equipped rooms have air-conditioning, satellite LCD flatscreen TV, tea/coffee making facilities, telephone, mini-bar, hairdryer and a safe deposit box.



Hongzhu Hotel
Hongzhu Hotel - Ya'an, Sichuan (2 Nights)
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It is a 4 star business hotel situated at city center of Yaan city, close to Bifeng Valley and the Bifengxia Panda Reserve.



Jin-Tone Hotel
Jin-Tone Hotel - Guilin (2 Nights)
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Guilin Jin-Tone Hotel is a great base from which to explore this vibrant city and its local attractions. Each of its air conditioned, modern en-suite rooms include satellite television, a minibar, Wifi and tea making facilities. There is an onsite spa that offers Chinese massage, and the hotel’s restaurant serves Chinese and Western dishes.



Jasper International Hotel
Jasper International Hotel - Yangshuo (2 Nights)
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Yangshuo Jasper International Hotel is located a 5 minute complimentary shuttle ride to the centre of Yangshuo’s pedestrianised market streets. Each of its 400 air conditioned, modern en-suite rooms include satellite television, safety deposit boxes and tea making facilities. There are 2 onsite restaurants offering local southern Chinese cuisine as well as Western cuisine. The outdoor pool is a highlight.



Holiday Inn Downtown Shanghai
Holiday Inn Downtown Shanghai - Shanghai (2 Nights)
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Holiday Inn Shanghai Downtown is located in central Shanghai, with easy reach of a large shopping centre, local resaturants and the metro. Each air conditioned, modern en-suite room includes satellite television, a minibar and tea making facilities. The onsite Chinese restaurant offers Dim Sum and seasonal Hairy Crab for those wishing to try the local flavours.



A visa is required by all nationalities. A single entry visa should be arranged in advance of travel.
Unlike many other tour operators, we include your entry visas in the price of our tour. We handle the entire visa process – all you need to do is fill out the form and send your passport to us. We are always on hand to help you with any questions or queries you might have when completing the form. 

Phone Calls
International and domestic calls can be made from your hotel room. Calls may cost £1 per minute to the UK, plus a 10% service charge, but will vary by location. To call the UK the international access code is 00, followed by the country code 44, then the local area code (omitting the first 0), then the number. To call Wendy Wu Tours it is 00 44 207 403 7860. Emergency 24 hour telephone (out of office hours) is 00 44 7984 041 625.
 
Mobile Phones
Mobile phones are quite popular in China and you will find high quality coverage. China has active roaming agreements with all phone carriers; however SMS and call rates can be expensive. We recommend that you contact your mobile supplier if you intend to use international roaming during your holiday and ensure you investigate all associated costs before you leave the UK.
 
Internet & Email
Internet cafes can be found in all major cities and even in some small towns. This is often the easiest and cheapest way to stay in touch. Most hotels have a business centre with internet access, but at a slightly higher rate. Some hotels may have wifi which usually comes at an additional cost and may only be available in hotel lobbies. 

Tipping is an expected element in the tourism industry today and China is no exception. Many passengers are often uncertain of how much to tip so we have established a tipping system whereby every passenger gives a set amount (in US Dollars) to the National Escort who will distribute the amount appropriately. On multi-country tips, this amount will be paid in stages on arrival in each country. If there is no National Escort, you will need to give your money to your Local Guides and tipping amounts for each city will be shown in your final itinerary. The amount for the kitty is calculated for each tour depending on the length, group size and services used during the trip.
 
For independent passengers, or group passengers with pre/post tour arrangements, you should allow USD5-10 per person per day.
 
We will indicate the tipping amounts in your final documents for guidance.

Shopping can be a fun and entertaining component to any travel adventure, and China has a vast array of shopping opportunities for those who love to seek out a bargain. From hand carved jade to local silk products or pearls from the South China Sea – the variety and choice can seem endless.
 
In keeping with most people’s interests whilst on holiday, your tour will include a reasonable number of opportunities to shop for local goods and souvenirs.
 
We have included visits to establishments that not only provide an opportunity to purchase a locally produced, great-value souvenir; but you’ll witness first-hand how these local products are made, their history and how they support the local economy. We are aware that people like to take home souvenirs, so we endeavour to ensure the shops you visit have a reputation for quality, honesty, and authenticity – we do our best to ensure that you don’t get ripped off. 

The cost of most meals is included in your group tour cost.
 
Breakfast is served in the hotel and usually includes western dishes. As is traditional in China, lunch and dinner consists of small dishes of local cuisine which is then placed on a ‘Lazy Susan’ so you can experience the variety of speciality dishes. In China all the dishes are served in various styles and brought out to the table for everyone to share. The amount served is more than ample for the whole group. We aim to cater to the tastes of the majority of people and so the food is not too spicy or unusual in taste.
 
Each individual place setting will consist of a bowl of fan (rice), a pair of chopsticks (you may request western cutlery if you prefer), a flat bottomed soup spoon and a saucer. Chinese food is usually served in courses where a typical meal will consist of rice, one to four meat or fish dishes, two vegetable dishes, and one soup dish. Almost all food is cut into bite sized pieces. The centre of the meal is the fan or rice. The meats and vegetables that we think of as the focus of the meal are known as ts’ai, which roughly translates as ‘side dishes’. Fish is not always available, particularly outside of the bigger cities.
 
The Chinese are also not big on desserts with meals normally complemented with fruit to clean and refresh the palate.
 
Sichuan cuisine is distinguished by its use of ginger, chilli and the ‘Sichuan peppercorn’ called the fagara. Each meal will usually have some mild dishes but many of the local speciality dishes will be hot. If your group find there are not enough mild dishes served, please inform your National Escort/Local Guide so that they may resolve the problem for the next meal.
 
If you would like to drink beer, soft drink or bottled water with your meals, payment is to be made directly to the restaurant staff. Beer is traditionally consumed in small glasses; not the larger pints glasses that you may be used to.
 
Green tea is sometimes provided complimentary. All other drinks will be at your own expense.
If you have booked a tour that does not include all meals, your local guides will be able to recommend a variety of restaurants to meet your taste and budget.
 
It is possible to buy snacks in supermarkets within major towns or cities. Alternatively, you may also like to bring comforts like cereal, biscuits, muesli bars, and tea/coffee from home.
 
Any food/diet requests MUST be specified at the time of booking and you should mention it again to the National Escort/ Local Guides when you meet them – they will do their utmost to cater for any special requests, such as vegetarian meals or food to be avoided in case of allergies.


Why Book This Tour?

This tour is designed for those who wish to further immerse themselves in the authentic charm of China and take part in more cultural and active experiences. This tour is also suitable for those who wish to take a Yangtze River Cruise.

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