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China by rail

Beijing - Xi'an - Chengdu - Chongqing


A tour from the capital Beijing to the lively city of Chongqing on the Yangtze River, by way of Xi'an and Chengdu on the newly opened high-speed rail line. See great historical sights plus China's loveable giant pandas. Combination of private guide arrangements and joining regular coach tours.

Day 1  Depart London Heathrow or regional airports.

Day 2  Arrive in Beijing. Met on arrival and transfer to your hotel. Rest of the day free.

Day 3  Today join a seat-in-coach day tour to see Tiananmen Square followed by the Forbidden City - the huge palace that was the centre of power and home of China's emperors for five centuries. After lunch visit the Temple of Heaven where emperors prayed for good harvests, and the beautiful Summer Palace (B, L)

Day 4  After breakfast join a seat-in-coach tour to the Great Wall at Badaling. This is followed by a visit to the tombs of the Ming emperors. (B, L)

Day 5  In the morning catch the high-speed train to Xi'an (about 5- to 6-hour journey). You will be met by your local guide and then travel with them on the metro to your hotel. In the afternoon walk along the ramparts of Xi'an's impressive medieval city wall, and enjoy some leisure time in the alleyways of the atmospheric Muslim district (B, L)

Day 6  Join a seat-in-coach tour to visit the famous Terracotta Army, created by China's first emperor to guard his tomb for eternity. (B, L)

Day 7  After breakfast, take the metro, accompanied by your guide, to the railway station for the high-speed train to Chengdu (about 3-hour journey). On arrival you will be greeted by a guide and taken to your hotel. Then visit the Panda Research Base on the outskirts of Chengdu, where there are many pandas and where there is a breeding programme. Return to city to visit Jinli Street, a busy traditional trading street. Continue to the People's Park to enjoy leisure time at a local teahouse. (B, L)

Day 8  Excursion to the city of Leshan to visit the "dafo" or Giant Buddha - a huge statue carved out of a cliff overlooking the Min River in the 8th century AD. On your return journey to Chengdu stop at the old town of Huanglongxi, with its wooden houses and cobbled streets. (B, L)

Day 9  Transfer to railway station for high-speed train to Chongqing (about 1.5 hour journey). Met on arrival and accompanied visit to Erling Park where you can get a good view of the 'mountain city'. Then visit the Stilwell museum commemorating American involvement in supporting China during World War 2, and Ciqikou ancient town with its traditional buildings and streets in the suburbs of Chongqing. (B, L)

Day 10  Transfer to airport for flight(s) back to UK, arriving later the same day. (B)


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