HIGHLIGHTS OF CHINA & THE YANGTZE RIVER

HIGHLIGHTS OF CHINA & THE YANGTZE RIVER

Shanghai to Beijing

As the longest river in China, the Yangtze River offers a picturesque collection of age old history and culture that has prevailed for centuries. This complete hosted tour features the Yangtze River cruise on a luxury ship complete with shore excursions, vibrant metropolitan Shanghai, the world class city of Suzhou, the charming water towns of eastern China, and the imperial city of Beijing.

 

*Optional 2-Night Xian Extension

 

Single supplements available!
Call your local Merit Travel expert.

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Highlights:

Shanghai   |   Suzhou   |   Wuxi   |   Hangzhou   |   Yichang   |   Yangtze River   |   Chongqing   |   Beijing

Includes:

• Round-trip airfare
• Plaza Premium airport lounge pass
• Domestic flights
• Nine nights 4 or 5-star hotel accommodation
• Four nights Yangtze River cruise onboard the President 7
• Thirteen breakfasts, eleven lunches, and eight dinners
• Sightseeing and entrance fees as per the itinerary
• Private motor coach transportation
• Local English-speaking tour guide
• Merit Travel tour host**
• All taxes and gratuities

Level of support:

Guided

13 nights

$3,550* p.p.


Activity Level:
Sight-seeing

Group size: 30 maximum

$3,550* p.p.
Departing from Toronto or Vancouver:
Oct. 21, 2018

$895* p.p.
*Optional 2-night Xian Extension:
Nov. 04 - 06, 2018

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View Itinerary +

Breakfast Incl. (B), Lunch Incl. (L), Dinner Incl.(D)

DAY 1 | Oct. 21, 2018 | DEPART TORONTO -SHANGHAI
Depart Toronto for your overnight flight to Shanghai.

China Eastern Airlines Flight MU208 departs Toronto at 3:25 p.m. arrives Shanghai at 7:20 p.m. the following day.

DAY 2 | Oct. 22, 2018: ARRIVE IN SHANGHAI
Upon arrival in Shanghai you will meet your local tour guide at the airport and transfer you to the hotel.

Overnight at Wyndham Bund East Shanghai (or similar)

DAY 3 | Oct. 23, 2018 | SHANGHAI (B, L)
Shanghai is the vibrant metropolis and commercial center of China.

Today you will visit the Shanghai Museum and indulge in ancient Chinese art, furniture, and jade. Then visit the Shanghai Old City God Temple area, a busy shopping centre where you may find souvenirs and delicious local delicacies.

Enjoy some free time and in the afternoon walk along the famous Bund, a mile-long stretch along the Huangpu River. Lined by the colonial architectures of European design, this area is the best place to capture the western influences of the old days.

Overnight at Wyndham Bund East Shanghai (or similar)

OPTIONAL EXCURSION: Night Cruise on the Huangpu River ($65 p.p).
Riding a cruise along the Huangpu River, you will take a glimpse of the history and charming views of Cosmopolitan Shanghai by night. On one side of the river, there is the Bund, lining the boulevard of the waterfront are Western-style grandiose solid buildings dating back to the early 19th century. On the other side you will catch a glimpse of the charming view of modern Shanghai.


DAY 4 | Oct. 24, 2018 | SHANGHAI-SUZHOU (B, L, D)
After breakfast, travel by coach to Suzhou. Suzhou is also known as the “Garden City” due to its many classical gardens renowned for their charming natural beauty and harmonious construction.

Upon arrival, visit the Lingering Garden known to be one the finest gardens in China. Suzhou is known as “Venice of the East” as a large area of the city is covered by water with a vast number of ponds and streams.

Overnight at Suzhou Qingshan Hotel (or similar)

OPTIONAL EXCURSION: Grand Canal cruise ($40p.p).
Cruise along the canal to view life along China’s golden waterway in its heyday. Then, visit a Silk Spinning Mill, and learn how silk is created from mulberry-munching silkworms to produce the finest thread and cloth.


DAY 5 | Oct. 25, 2018 | SUZHOU-WUXI (B, L)
This morning travel by coach to Wuxi, one of the oldest cities in China with a history of more than 3000 years.

Upon arrival, visit one of the largest fresh water pearl farms in the country, followed by the Lingshan Grand Buddha. Later, stroll along Nanchang street, a charming and fashionable pedestrian street composed of both ancient and modern architectural styles.

Overnight at Swiss-Belhotel Liyuan Wuxi (or similar)

DAY 6 | Oct. 26, 2018 | WUXI – HANGZHOU (B, L, D)
After breakfast you will travel by coach to Hangzhou, described by Marco Polo as “the most beautiful and magnificent city in the world”. Experience an oriental tea-tasting at the Dragon Well Tea Plantation. Then, take a boat ride on the serene West Lake, the most renowned feature of Hangzhou, noted for its scenic beauty which blends with many famous historical and cultural sites.

Overnight at Jinma Palace Hotel Hangzhou (or similar)

OPTIONAL EXCURSION: Impression West Lake ($115 p.p)
This is one of China’s top live-action performances. It is strongly featured by the local culture and unique charm of West Lake in Hangzhou and famous for its dreamlike show and fantastic elegance, created by Zhang Yimou China’s most famous movie director and general director of the opening ceremony of the Beijing2008 Olympic Games.


DAY 7 | Oct. 27, 2018 | HANGZHOU – SHANGHAI - YICHANG (B, L, D)
This morning, travel by coach to Shanghai, and then fly to Yichang, the starting point of your Yangtze River Cruise.

In the evening you will board the luxury President 7 cruise and enjoy a welcome orientation on the cruise events and onboard activities. You may choose to purchase the onboard VIP package. ($125 p.p.)

OPTIONAL PACKAGE: Yangtze River Onboard VIP Package $125 p.p.
• Free coffee, tea and snacks during happy hour in the afternoon
• Enjoy all meals at the VIP restaurant and a la carte where available (a la carte meals need to be paid separately)
• Free drinks before dinner
• Unlimited wine, beer and soft drinks during lunch and dinner
• Express check in and check out
• Room turn-down service
• Welcome fruit basket in cabin
• VIP area reserved for evening entertainment
• Free sauna and swimming
• Two hours free internet per sailing


DAY 8 | Oct. 28, 2018 | YANGTZE RIVER CRUISE (B, L, D)
Your highly anticipated grand Yangtze River adventure begins this morning. The cruise ship`s first stop is at Taipingxi (or Sandouping). Disembark to visit the massive Three Gorges Dam Project, the world’s largest dam, measuring 606 feet high and 6,500 feet long. In 1997, the cofferdam was completed and the main structure begun.

Re-embark the cruise ship and sail through Xiling Gorge, the longest one of the Three Gorges at 41 miles long and also its highest (4000 feet).

DAY 9 | Oct. 29, 2018 | YANGTZE RIVER CRUISE (B, L, D)
Disembark at Wushan where you will board small riverboats for a leisurely ride through Shennong Stream`s picturesque rock formations, and see the playful monkeys and goats along the river banks.

Then re-embark the cruise as it sails through Wu Gorge, famous for its quiet beauty, and the Qutang Gorge, the shortest and most dramatic of the Three Gorges.

DAY 10 | Oct. 30, 2018 | YANGTZE RIVER CRUISE (B, L, D)
Today enjoy a shore excursion to Shibaozhai. The Shibaozhai Pagoda is a 12-storey, 18th-century temple built in Zhongxian County on the northern bank of the Yangtze River and represents one of the gems of Chinese Architecture.

DAY 11 | Oct. 31, 2018 | CHONGQING – BEIJING (B, L, D)
This morning disembark your cruise at the port of Chongqing . You will then visit Ciqikou Old Town, where history can be traced back for more than 1700 years. Afterwards, you may choose to visit the Panda House before flying to Beijing, China’s capital city.

Overnight at Ramada Beijing North (or similar)

OPTIONAL EXCURSION: Panda House ($50 p.p)
The Chongqing Zoo was built in 1953 and lies in the southern suburb of Chongqing. It occupies an area of 45 hectares (112 acres), making it one of the biggest urban zoos in China. The panda house alone is about 2 hectares (5 acres) in size. The zoo is home to more than 230 different animal species, and contains a total of more than 6000 animals.


DAY 12 | Nov. 01, 2018 | BEIJING (B, L)
Beijing has served as the capital of five dynasties over a period of 800 years. Today, we will visit Tiananmen Square, the second largest public square in the world, and the Forbidden City, the Chinese imperial palace from the Ming to Qing dynasty.

Then continue to the Jingshan Chinese Herbal Institute and learn about traditional Chinese medicine, which has existed for thousands of years.

Overnight at Ramada Beijing North (or similar)

OPTIONAL EXCURSION: The Golden Mask Dynasty ($85 p.p)
“The Golden Mask Dynasty” is an original Chinese musical drama which tells a mythical fairy-tale like story of war, royal banquets, and romance. The large-scale production includes more than 200 performances and features Chinese dances, acrobatics, costumes, and lighting and acoustics, representing a soul-stirring and romantic “great love and harmony” legend!


DAY 13 | Nov. 02, 2018 | BEIJING (B, L, D)
Today’s highlight is an excursion to the majestic Great Wall, the most famous image representing China, where you will also have an opportunity to climb a portion of this 3,700-mile marvel. Then continue to one of the largest jade exhibitions for some shopping or exploring.

After lunch, you will see skilled artisans at work at a Cloisonné factory. Then pass by modern exteriors of the Olympic Bird’s Nest and Water Cube.

Your farewell banquet this evening includes the Peking roast duck, a local delicacy.

Overnight at Ramada Beijing North (or similar)

DAY 14 | Nov. 03, 2018 | BEIJING (B)
Enjoy your entire day is at leisure free for shopping or exploring or join an optional Temple of Heaven & Hutong Life tour with lunch.

Overnight at Ramada Beijing North (or similar)

OPTIONAL EXCURSION: Temple of Heaven & Hutong Life Tour with lunch ($100 p.p).
The Temple of Heaven, inscribed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site, was invited by the Emperors of the Ming and Qing dynasties for annual ceremonies of prayer to Heaven for good harvest. Then enjoy a famous rickshaw Hutong Tour & visit a local family with a traditional Beijing Zhajiang mian (‘Fried Sauce Noodles’) lunch. Hutongs are traditional alley ways that made up Beijing’s old city planning, and the rickshaw allow a glimpse into the old way of life and traditional Beijing culture. See the dramatic changes the city has undergone, and visit a local family and the local market.


DAY 15 | Nov. 04, 2018 | BEIJING – TORONTO (B)
Today depart to the airport for your flight home.

China Eastern Airlines flight 5183 departs Beijing 7:25 a.m. arrives Shanghai 9:55 a.m. Connecting with China Eastern Airlines flight 207 departs Shanghai at 12:05 p.m. arrives Toronto 1:25 p.m.


*Optional 2-night Xian Extension.

DAY 15 | Nov. 04, 2018 | BEIJING-XIAN (L, D)
Fly to Xi’an, the first Chinese city to open its doors to the world during the Tang Dynasty.

Over a period of more than 2000 years, Xi’an was the capital for eleven dynasties. Upon arrival, you will visit the Terra Cotta Warriors and Horses Museum and see the attached life-sized defending army to the first emperor of China, Qin Shi Huang. This site is regarded as “the eighth wonder of the world” and is among the top archaeological excavations of the 20th century.

Continue with a visit to an Art Ceramics Factory before we enjoy the special local Imperial Dumpling Banquet Dinner and the traditional Tang Dynasty Singing and Dancing show.

DAY 16 | Nov. 05, 2018 | XIAN (B, L, D)
Today visit the Shanxi Provincial Historical Museum and then enjoy a local noodle lunch with a noodle making demonstration.

After lunch, visit the Ancient City Wall which is not only the most complete city wall that has survived in China, but also one of the largest and most complete ancient military defense systems in the world.

Continue with a visit to the Big Wild Goose Pagoda, the symbol of the city. It is said to have been built to house and protect Buddhist scriptures collected by the Chinese monk, Xuan Zang, the key figure in the classical Chinese novel, “Journey to the West”.

DAY 17 | Nov. 06, 2018 | XIAN-BEIJING-SHANGHAI-CANADA (B)
After breakfast at the hotel, you will fly to Shanghai via Beijing for your international fight home.

Location Map:


Operated by Merit Travel.
Not included: China visa fee (approx. $200 p.p.); any personal expenses, such as insurance, passport fees, any meals, or items not mentioned.
*CDN$ per person, double occupancy. Taxes included. Single supplement add $1,095. Two-night optional Xi'an extension single supplement: $250 p.p. Airfare available from most Canadian airports please enquire.
**Minimum 12 passengers required for a Merit Travel tour host.

® Merit Travel trademark owned by, and use is granted by, Merit Travel Group Inc. Offers are based on availability and may be subject to change. Certain exclusions, limitations and restrictions may apply. For full terms and conditions visit, https://merittravel.com/terms-and-conditions/.

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