Day 1: Arrive Beijing
Arrive at Beijing, China's exciting and cultural heart. Your private guide will meet you at airport and transfer to hotel. Rest day is free for jet-leg.
Day 2: Beijing B,L,D (breakfast, lunch, dinner)
The day begins at Tiananmen Square, the largest City Square in the world. From there you will enter the Forbidden City, a powerful maze of ancient palaces and courtyards from which the emperor ruled the land for 500 years. You will also see the Emperor's clock collection and the Qing Dynasty Jewelry, Robes and Relics collection (which Westerners rarely see). After lunch at Wahaha restaurant (Hangzhou cuisine), we will take you to the Temple of Heaven, where the emperors of the Ming and the Qing Dynasties prayed for good harvests. The temple is not only especially glamorous, it is an architectural wonder because not a single nail was used for its construction. Enjoy Chinese Kongfu or Peking Opera show after dinner.
Day 3: Beijing B,L,SD (special dinner)
Today's excursion to the Great Wall (Juyongguan section) of China promise to be a highlights of our travels. We'll have a chance to take a hike along one of the most beautiful sections and learn of its construction 2000 years ago, and examine first-hand one of the most scenic portions of its 3700 miles length. Visit the workshops of a cloisonne factory to see workers practice this unique art. After lunch, we will visit Ming Tombs, including the Sacred Way and the Ding Ling Museum. You will be able to enter one of the tombs. In the Ding Ling Museum you can see artifacts and replicas from the tomb itself. The Peking Duck banquet will be at famous Duck King Restaurant.
Day 4: Beijing/Xi¡¯an B,L
This morning you will visit Summer Palace, a vast and beautiful landscape of elegant garden, lakes and pavilions. We¡¯ll admire the famous Marble Boat during the visit. And then you will be taken to famous Silk Market (antique market if on Saturday or Sunday), which are where the Beijingers shop. Here, you can find many incredible deals on things, if you know what you are looking for and you know how to bargain. Take flight to Xi¡¯an, China's former capital, and gateway to the legendary Silk Road. Meet and transfer to your hotel.
Day 5: Xi¡¯an B,L,SD (special dinner)
Today's highlights is the most spectacular and important places in China: the Archaeological Museum with more than 6000 life-size terra-cotta warriors and horses excavated from the tomb of the first emperor of Qin Dynasty. Then we will visit Chinese paper cutting.demonstration at Friendship Restaurant, where you will have lunch. Afternoon explore the bustling Muslim Quarter or seek serenity in the grounds of the Grand Mosque. Enjoy Tang Dynasty dinner show at Tang Dynasty Palace.
Day 6: Xi¡¯an/Lanzhou B,L,D
This morning, you will stroll along the South Gate, a lively pedestrian quarter where you'll see street artists demonstrating their wonderful skills. Sightseeing today features the ancient city wall, the Big Wild Goose Pagoda and the Shanxi provincial museum. The experience of riding bicycle at the top of the wall will be unforgotten. Take afternoon flight to Lanzhou. Meet and transfer hotel.
Day 7: Lanzhou/Xiahe B,L
We depart Lanzhou early for our long journey to the spectacular Bingling Si, the Thousand Buddha Caves carved into the cliffs above Liujiaxia Lake. We take time to admire these amazing Qin dynasty carvings before continuing our journey on to the Tibetan town of Xiahe in the remote south-west of Gansu province.
Day 8: Xiahe/Lanzhou B,L
Visit Labrang Lamasery, one of the six main lamaseries of the Yellow Sect of Buddhism and the largest Lamaism institute in the world with a large collection of scriptures volumes. The site of Labrang Lamasery is named Xiahe which is often referred to as "Little-Tibet". We will also visit a local family in the Sangke grasslands before returning Lanzhou.
Day 9: Lanzhou/Jiayuguan B,L
Lanzhou was once a major transportation hub and garrison on the Silk Road and is today a sprawling yet fascinating Chinese city with a large muslim (Hui) population. We explore the local action along the banks of the Yellow River climb up to the peak of White Pagoda Hill for incredible views over this vast city. Also visit Zhongshan bridge and local museum if time permit Take overnight train to Jiayuguan.
Day 10: Jiayuguan/Dunhuang B,L
Arrive Jiayuguan in early morning. We visit an ancient frontier fortress, and head out to remote remnants of the Great Wall (on the cliff) where we take a short climb for some spectacular views over this wild and beautiful region. Transfer to Dunhuang.
Day 11: Dunhuang B,L
Today you will visit the Maogao Grottoes, it was built in 366 A.D. The 492 grottoes boast mural paintings, totaling 45,000 square meters and 2,000 painted figurines. Then you will experience a short camel-riding along the Echoing-Sand Dune to reach the precious oasis of the desert, the Crescent Lake.
Day 12: Dunhuang/Turpan B,L
Full day visit the Yumen Guan Pass, the Great Wall of the Han Dynasty, the Hecang Fortress and the Yang Guan Pass. Take overnight train to Turpan.
Day 13: Turpan B,L
Arrive Turpan in the morning. Today¡¯s sightseeing program features Gaochang Ancient City, the Astana Tombs and the ruin of Jiaohe. Enjoy the cultural show of Uygur songs and dances.
Day 14: Turpan/Urumqi B,L
Full day tour includes the grape growing valleys, where you will be treated to Turpan's grapes, ancient underground irrigation projects, the Flaming Mountain and thousand Buddha Caves. And then transfer to Urumqi. On the way, you can see the largest wind power station in Asia.
Day 15: Urumqi/Kashgar B,L
Enjoy an excursion to Tianchi Lake situated on Tianshan Mountain. The pasture is a very beautiful nice place for graze with mountains, valleys, fountains, waterfalls, cypress and pine trees. Afternoon you back to city and visit Culture Museum. If time permit, you also take a city tour, which gives you a glimpse of the major sights of this north-western city populated by Han people and thirteen ethnic minorities. Take evening flight to Kashgar. Meet and transfer to hotel.
Day 16: Kashgar/Urumqi B,L
Excursion today takes you to the Great Bazzar, alive with storybook scenes: thousands of merchants haggling for camels, carpets and other native goods; imams on don keys and veiled women in their back robes (Sunday will be the best time to visit Bazzar as the animal bazzar is only available on Sunday). Also visit the Id Kah Mosque, Tomb of Abakh Hoja and local handicraft art factory. Fly back to Urumqi in the evening.
Day 17: Urumqi/Shanghai B,L
Take flight to Shanghai, China's largest city and vibrant commercial heart. After finishing checking-in, Our guide will take you for a walk along the Bund, the city's landmark, to view the neo-Classical and Art Deco buildings from Shanghai's heyday of 1930's and meander through the bustling Nanjing Road for some shopping. Then your guide will take you to the Xin Tian Di, which is a newly developed recreation area in Shanghai with old styled buildings. You may find a cafe or western-styled restaurant to have your own dinner.
Day 18: Shanghai B,L,D
Today¡¯s city tour starts with Yuyuan Garden, formerly a private garden with rookies, pavilions, halls and ponds. And then walk around the Chenghuangmiao Area (old town), the most-lively place in Shanghai. Lunch will be at Seagull Palace (Shanghai Cuisine) beside Huangpu River. In the afternoon, you will visit world-class Shanghai Museum with its many fine exhibits (especially of note is the Chinese Minority exhibit) and Children¡¯s palace. Enjoy Portman Acrobatic show after dinner.
Day 19: Leave Shanghai B
Departure transfer to airport. Fly for home.