China : Highlights Tour
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Also known as the cradle of humanity, Beijing is the epicentre of China’s economic, political and educational hub. The city is famous for its Hutongs which are formed by lines of traditional courtyard residences (siheyuan). Since the mid-20th century, many hutongs have been demolished to make way for new roads and buildings. A visit to Beijing will give you a glimpse into China’s imperial past. Highlights of Beijing include: Tiananmen Square, the Forbidden City and the Olympic Stadium; it is also the gateway for the opportunity to climb the legendary Great Wall of China.
Located in the centre of the Weihe Plain, bounded by the Weihe River in the north and the Qin Mountain Range in the south, Xian is the undisputed root of Chinese civilization and an important economic, cultural, industrial centre of the central-northwest region. The city provides visitors with modern facilities as well as numerous world-class ancient, religious, and cultural attractions showcasing the great changes in the country just like a living history book. Must see attractions include: the Tomb of Emperor Jingdi, the immaculately restored and mighty city wall, and of course, the primary attraction, the astonishing display of approximately 2,000 life-like terracotta warriors, horses and chariots. The assemblage has been billed by the tourist industry as the Eighth Wonder of the World and a world cultural heritage site by UNESCO in 1987. For those seeking a unique, authentic and fascinating cultural experience, Xian won’t fail to impress.
Centered around the city of Chongqing and the Yangzi River, the province of Chongqing is an exciting area for both commerce and travel. The Yangzi is the world's third longest river, offering hour-long or multi-day cruises from Chongqing city, providing exceptional views of both the wilderness areas along the river and the city's incredible skyline. Visitors should be sure to witness the famous ‘Twelve Views of Bayu’ all of which are set in and around the city. These include the Ayi River, Changshou Lake, the Furong Cave, Black Mountain, the Three Natural Bridges, the Gorges of Mount Wu, the Tongjing Hot Pools and the Huangshui Forest. Other not-to-be-missed destinations include Wuxi County on the Daning River, Dazu Rock Carvings situated on Dazu County’s steep hillsides, and the Diaoyu Fortress, providing evidence of China’s historic resistance to Mongol forces.
Resting on the northern bank of the mighty Yangtze River, the ancient city of Yichang serves as a major transportation hub connecting the eastern and the western parts of China. The area is thought to have been inhabited for over 7000 years with numerous prehistoric sites and relics having been discovered. The residents of Yichang pride themselves on their city’s astounding engineering, cultural and historical marvels including, among others: the impressive Gezhou and Three Gorges Dams; the exquisite Huangling Temple, and the fascinating Chinese Sturgeon Museum. There are numerous luxury Yangtze Riverboat cruises on offer between Yichang and Chongqing providing excellent views of the city’s remarkable surrounding wilderness characterised by towering mountains, jaw-dropping waterfalls, ancient caves, stone forests and crystal clear natural pools. Yinchang somehow manages to combine all of these natural, historical and cultural wonders with all of the attractions and facilities one would expect of a vibrant modern city.
Located on the estuary of the famed Yangtze River, the renowned international metropolis of Shanghai is a bold and brash mix of East and West. It is home to some of the world’s tallest skyscrapers, historical shikumen houses blending the styles of Chinese houses with European design flair, and it has one of the richest collections of Art Deco buildings in the world. Must see attractions include: the Yuyuan Gardens, loaded with classical Chinese architecture; the many traditional Chinese tea houses serving a wide range of tea along with traditional delicacies; Shanghai Museum with its impressive ancient bronze exhibit; and even a Chinese take on Madame Tussauds which offers a fascinating mix of Chinese and western figures, from film stars to athletes and world leaders. With such a wide range of attractions on offer the city is almost impossible to exhaust - even in a lengthy visit you are likely to only scratch the surface.