If you are a first time traveller to China, you want to focus on two of China’s greatest cities – Beijing and Shanghai – plus a few days in the scenic town of Guilin and Yangshuo. Explore the cities and rural regions with your own private guide and driver, touring museums and Imperial buildings, visiting traditional villages, exploring sophisticated shopping, art and dining districts, and staying in China’s best luxury hotels.
UNLEASH YOUR MOJO: EXPLORING THE BEST OF CHINA CITIES AND SCENIC TOWNS
We begin the tour in Beijing, China’s ancient capital. With your private guide and driver, tour imperial masterpieces such as the Ming Tombs, the Forbidden City, the Summer Palace, the Temple of Heaven, Tiananmen Square and take a day’s excursion to the Great Wall of China. Dine on traditional specialties at favourite family-run restaurants, and enjoy dining in Beijing’s most acclaimed restaurants. Visit markets specializing in artefacts, silk and pearls and if desired, explore the new art gallery districts that showcase the city’s burgeoning contemporary art scene. Then fly to Xian to see its famous Terracotta Army.
Next, fly to Guilin, famed for its beautiful landscape of limestone mountains. Take a boat cruise on the Li River and view the passing picturesque scenery punctuated with bizarrely shaped pinnacles, rice paddies, sprays of bamboo lining up the riverbanks, fishermen with their cormorants and buffaloes bathing in the sun. From Yangshuo, take a rickshaw tour along the back roads of this picturesque region, exploring local villages with your private guide and driver.
Continue to Shanghai and experience the unbridled energy of China’s most stylish and modern city. During private touring, learn about Shanghai’s history through the architecture of the Bund, the French Concession, Pudong and other districts. Tour some of China’s best museums, including the Shanghai Museum. Your guide will also take you to Shanghai’s old town to sample dumplings and sweets, and have tea at the city’s oldest teahouse. Also visit the neighbourhoods filled with art galleries, design shops and stylish new restaurants.
Max your Awim Chinese people celebrate a lot of festivals each year. Most of these festivals take place on important dates in the Chinese lunar calendar. It is important to know which festivals to avoid, like the Chinese New Year when travel is difficult and which ones to attend, like the Dragon Boat and Shanghai Tea festivals held in May-June. Other festivals include the Shanghai Film festival in mid-Jun and the Shoton Festival, one of the most popular traditional festivals in Tibet held in the month of August.
Beijing Capital International Airport, about 12 miles (19 kilometres) northeast of the city centre, is served by numerous international carriers from the UK. Taxis at the airport are plentiful; the ride into town costs about $20 and can take anywhere from half an hour to an hour and a half, depending on traffic. For the adventuresome there's also a train that whisks you in 23 minutes to a fairly central station in Beijing from which you can cab it to your hotel.