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16 Day China with Tibet & 3 Day Yangtze River Cruise


Escorted Package Includes

This Program is available for U.S. Passport Holders Only

  • Flights LAX-Shanghai, Beijing-LAX
    Other departure cities available. Click on date of departure for selection and prices
  • Airline taxes & fuel surcharges
  • Intra-flights Shanghai-Xian, Xian-Tibet, Tibet-Chongqing & Yichang-Beijing
  • 14 nights First Class accommodations
    • 3 nights Shanghai
    • 2 nights Xian
    • 3 nights Lhasa (Tibet)
    • 3 nights cruise downstream on Victoria Cruise, Yangtze River
    • 3 nights Beijing
  • Hotel & cruise porterage
  • All transfers
  • 29 meals: 14 breakfasts, 8 lunches, 7 dinners
  • Sightseeing per itinerary in modern air-conditioned motor coach
  • Services of English-speaking tour manager throughout
  • Entrance fees per itinerary

Special Features

  • Terracotta Army
  • Potala Palace
  • Jokang Temple
  • Great Wall of China
  • Forbidden City
  • Summer Palace
  • Famous Peking Duck Dinner with Wine

DAY 1, Monday - Depart the USA
Depart the USA to China. Your flight includes meals, drinks, and in-flight entertainment for your journey

DAY 2, Tuesday - Arrive in Shanghai
Arrive in Shanghai and transfer to your hotel. Balance of the day at leisure
Overnight: Shanghai

DAY 3, Wednesday - Shanghai City Tour
This morning, following a welcome orientation with your tour manager, enjoy a tour of the major attractions of Shanghai. Wander the classical Yuyuan Garden, built during the Ming Dynasty by the high-ranking government official Pan Yunduan. The Gardens' total area occupies approximately five acres, and features pavilions, ponds, rockeries, cloisters, and streams all within six scenic zones, including the Sansui Hall and Wanhua Chamber. In existence for 400 years, the Gardens were specifically constructed for Pan's aging parents as a sanctuary in which to live out their lives. Next, experience the old world charm of the Bund, the former "Wall Street" of the foreign powers. Walk along its park-like waterfront promenade between the Wusong River and Old Town. Later today, enjoy a stop at a local silk carpet and embroidery shop. Continue to visit the Jade Buddha Temple which is the most famous and one of the most active Buddhist temples in Shanghai. It was built during the Guangxu period of the Qing Dynasty to enshrine two beautiful jade Buddha statues that were brought from Burma.Enjoy the remainder of the afternoon at leisure
Optional: Acrobatic Show with Dinner
Overnight: Shanghai
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch

DAY 4, Thursday - Full Day in Shanghai
Enjoy a full day at leisure to explore Shanghai on your own
Optional: Full Day Suzhou with Lunch & Cruise on the Grand Canal
Overnight: Shanghai
Meals: Breakfast

DAY 5, Friday - Flight to Xian
After breakfast, transfer to the airport for your flight to Xian. Upon arrival, trace the beginnings of Chinese civilization at the Shaanxi Provincial History Museum. Opened to the public in 1991, the museum is in southern Xian, and is home to a wealth of historical artifacts and treasures from the Han and Tang dynasties
Optional: Dumpling Dinner
Overnight: Xian
Meals: Breakfast

DAY 6, Saturday - Xian Antiquities Tour with Terracotta Army
This morning, after breakfast you will have the opportunity to visit Xingqing Park. Filled with culture, this local park is a hub of activity in the morning. You may witness and have the chance to participate in morning exercise, singing, and dancing. Later this morning visit to a local Lacquer Furniture Shop. Stop for lunch at a local restaurant before a tour of Xian's antiquities. Your tour includes the archaeological site at the tomb of China's first emperor, Qin Shi Huang (259-210 B.C.), where more than 8,000 finely sculpted, life-size terracotta soldiers and horses were discovered by local farmers in 1974. The archaeological excavation of the three pits where the Terracotta Army was found continues today, more than thirty years since the time of its unearthing
Optional: Tang Dynasty Dinner with Entertainment
Overnight: Xian
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch

DAY 7, Sunday - Flight to Lhasa, Tibet*
This morning, transfer to the airport for your flight to Tibet. Upon arrival, transfer to your hotel and enjoy the remainder of the afternoon at leisure
Overnight: Lhasa
Meals: Breakfast, Dinner

DAY 8, Monday - Potala Palace*
Today see one of the grandest monuments in all of Asia: the extraordinary Potala Palace. Built in the 17th century (atop the original 7th-century site), it boasts more than 1,000 rooms, including the Red Palace (where the Dalai Lama once lived), 10,000 chapels, and a labyrinth of mysterious dungeons. It took 7,000 workers and 1,500 artists and craftsmen more than 50 years to build the adjoining White and Red Palaces. This Eastern architectural triumph was the world's tallest building before the creation of 20th-century skyscrapers. Enjoy lunch at a local restaurant. On way back to hotel, we will visit the Tibetan Art Factory shop. Later this evening, enjoy dinner and a cultural show at a local restaurant
Overnight: Lhasa
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

DAY 9, Tuesday - Jokhang Temple*
After breakfast today, we head for the Barkhor Bazaar, a section of the oldest part of Lhasa that bustles with marketplace activity and religious devotion. Later today, visit the 1,300-year-old Jokhang Temple, where we are likely to see Buddhist pilgrims making clockwise circuits on their hands and knees in reverence to one of Tibet's most sacred sites. Thousands of yak-butter candles flicker inside beneath the enlightened gaze of the golden Jowo Sakyamuni, the seventh-century Buddha statue that the temple was built to house
Overnight: Lhasa
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

DAY 10, Wednesday - Flight to Chongqing
This morning, transfer to the airport for your flight to Chongqing. Upon arrival, enjoy a visit to the Stilwell Museum. At the beginning of 1942, General Joseph Warren Stilwell, a four-star U.S. Army general, acting under the orders of American President Franklin Delano Roosevelt, arrived in China to assume the position of Commander-in-Chief of Allied Forces in the China-Burma-India theater. General Stilwell resided here at that time, and returned to the U.S. on October 21, 1944. With the aid of General Stilwell, the Chinese people won the War of Resistance against the Japanese invaders. To commemorate General Stilwell's help, the local government of the city of Chongqing renovated the general's former temporary residence in Chongqing, and opened it to the public, as Stilwell Museum, in 1991. The Museum mainly exhibits the historical materials, data and pictures concerning General Stilwell and his mission in Chongqing. Later this evening, enjoy dinner at a local restaurant, then transfer to board your ship on the Yangtze River
Overnight: Yangtze River
Meals: Breakfast, Dinner

DAY 11, Thursday - Cruise to Fengdu
Cruise to Fengdu. Today's optional shore excursion will visit Fengdu's “Ghost City”, known for its statues of ghosts and devils on Minshan Hill, or the new relocation village built for the families who were forced to move due to rising waters from the creation of the Three Gorges Dam
Optional Shore Excursion: Fengdu Ghost City
Overnight: Yangtze River
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

DAY 12, Friday - Qutang and Wuxia Gorges
Sail through Qutang Gorge, the smallest of the three Yangtze gorges. Enjoy spectacular views of the surrounding mountain passes as you sail through the 25-mile long Wuxia (Witches) Gorge, famous for its fabled Twelve Peaks. According to legend, the peaks are believed to be the spirits of 12 fairies, the most famous of them being the Shennu Feng (Goddess) Peak, which is topped by a huge rock resembling a kneeling maiden. Today's optional excursion takes you on a scenic journey up the Shennong Stream. Continue on toward Xiling Gorge
Optional Shore Excursion: Shennong Stream
Overnight: Yangtze River
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

DAY 13, Saturday - Xiling Gorge; Flight to Beijing
Sail downstream through Xiling Gorge. The longest section of the Three Gorges system, it comprises the Xietan, Qintan, and Kongling rapids in what is known as the Three Rapids of Xiling. This morning's optional excursion visits the Three Gorges Dam near Sandouping Village. The Three Gorges Dam is the largest hydroelectric dam in the world, nearly six times the size of the Hoover Dam. This afternoon, disembark at Yichang to board your flight to Beijing. Upon arrival, transfer to your hotel
Optional Shore Excursion: Three Gorges Dam
Overnight: Beijing
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch

DAY 14, Sunday - Great Wall of China & Panda Visit
Enjoy a full-day excursion to the Great Wall of China, the longest man-made structure on Earth, spanning nearly 4,000 miles of China's northern frontier. Stop at a local Jade Shop before arriving to the Great Wall. Walk along the promenades and enjoy the unrivaled scenic views of beautiful mountain passes, plateaus and grasslands from this 7th-century defensive fortification. Afterwards, depart for lunch at a local Chinese restaurant. Following lunch, a brief photo stop at the Beijing Olympic village and then a visit with the famous Pandas at the Beijing Zoo before returning to Beijing
Overnight: Beijing
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch

DAY 15, Monday - Forbidden City & Summer Palace Tour
Enjoy a full day tour of the Forbidden City and the Summer Palace. Begin at Tiananmen Square, the largest public plaza in the world. Erected in 1417 at the height of the Ming Dynasty, the square was renovated and renamed two centuries later at the onset of the Great Qing Dynasty. View several impressive monuments outlining the Square's perimeter, including the Great Hall of the People, the Mausoleum of Mao Zedong and the Square's famed ceremonial gateway. From here, venture north for a visit to the Forbidden City (Imperial Palace), a construction comparable to the Pyramids in Egypt. Known today as the Palace Museum, the entire site is comprised of 800 buildings with more than 9,000 rooms. Later, enjoy a lunch at a local restaurant. Next, visit a local Pearl Shop before a visit to the Summer Palace. Tonight, enjoy a farewell dinner at a local restaurant
Overnight: Beijing
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

DAY 16, Tuesday - Depart for the USA
Transfer to the airport for your departure flight
Meals: Breakfast

*Please note: Lhasa sits at an elevation of 11,000 feet above sea level. Your included sightseeing will include a fair amount of walking, which at high elevations can be taxing for those in good physical condition. If you have any concerns about traveling to high altitudes, please consult with your healthcare provider.

    Book your Optional Tours before you travel and see more, save time, save money, and protect your investment. Tours purchased while traveling may cost an extra 10% or even more! Tours often sell out - avoid disappointment! Save your cash - many countries do not accept credit cards. Travel insurance only covers services purchased prior to departure.

    Acrobatic Show with dinner

    Day #3 01 Jan 2012 - 31 Mar 2016         $29
    Having undergone thousands of years of evolution, the Shanghai acrobatic arts has now blossomed into a unique style. The Shanghai Circus death-deifiers will amaze and astound you with their high-flying versatility, fearlessness, and flexibility. This evening, enjoy a world-class performance that includes dance, magic, acrobatics and beautiful music after dinner at local restaurant. Transfers to and from your hotel included.

    Pickup details to be advised locally. Approximate tour duration is 4 hours.

    Full Day Suzhou with lunch

    Day #4 01 Apr 2013 - 31 Mar 2015         $59
    This morning, depart your hotel for a 2.5 hour drive from Shanghai to Suzhou. Located in Jiangsu Province, this ancient city enjoys the name of "Paradise on the earth" or Venice of the East. Your day begins on the famous Grand Canal, the longest man made Canal in the world. Travel leisurely down the narrow waterways and under the elegant bridges. From your boat you will see the sites of this ancient city and the daily life of the people who inhabit the banks of the canal. Stop for lunch at a local restaurant followed by a visit to the Garden of the Master of the Nets. This privately owned garden is one of the most beautiful and most perfectly proportioned in Suzhou.The garden demonstrates Chinese garden designers' adept skills for synthesizing art, nature, and architecture to create unique metaphysical masterpieces. Later, enjoy free time along Guanquin Street, a famous street in Suzhou among locals for gathering, entertainment and food, and a favorite among visitors for its rich culture and sightseeing opportunities. Return to Shanghai late this evening.

    Pickup details to be advised locally. Approximate tour duration is 11 hours.

    Dumpling Dinner

    Day #5 01 Jan 2011 - 31 Mar 2016         $15
    This evening, enjoy a delicious dumpling banquet featuring nearly 20 varieties of jiaozi, or dumplings, stuffed with an assortment of vegetables, meats, and seafood. The traditional banquet also includes rice wine and bronze hot pot soup. Transfers to and from your hotel included.

    Pickup details to be advised locally. Approximate tour duration is 3 hours.

    Tang Dynasty Dinner & Show

    Day #6 01 Jan 2011 - 31 Mar 2016         $59
    Dine on Imperial set menu of 6 hot courses. All while you enjoy the beat of Chang' an music. After dinner, enjoy the celebrated Tang Dynasty show, a one-thousand-year-old dance performed by the passionate Tang Dynasty Troupe. This historical performance is a national art, reflective of the glory and richness of China's Tang Dynasty. Transfers to and from your hotel included.

    Pickup details to be advised locally. Approximate tour duration is 4 hours.

    Book your Optional Tours before you travel and see more, save time, save money, and protect your investment. Tours purchased while traveling may cost an extra 10% or even more! Tours often sell out - avoid disappointment! Save your cash - many countries do not accept credit cards. Travel insurance only covers services purchased prior to departure.

    Hotels Available for Departure Dates

    Choice of Hotel Plans

    Click a Date to Book Online

    This package is currently unavailable. Please check back later or call Virgin Vacations for more information.
    Create Your Own Flexible Vacation

    *Not Included:
    Yangtze River Cruise service charge of RMB 150 (approx. US$25) per adult per cruise (charged directly to your account upon embarkation), optional tours and gratuities.


    Additional Information:
    Land only price does not include arrival/departure transfers, but does include flights Shanghai-Xian, Xian-Tibet, Tibet-Chongqing, and Yichang-Beijing.

    Cruise itineraries are subject to change. Alternative sights may be visited depending upon water levels and darkness.

    Yangtze River Cruise cabins cannot comfortably accommodate 3 people; therefore, our triple adult and twin with child pricing reflects the additional cost of an upgrade to Executive Suite.

    Lhasa Xin Ding Grand Hotel does not accommodate 3 persons in a room. Pricing will reflect 1 twin and 1 single room.

    Please note: Lhasa sits at an elevation of 11,000 feet above sea level. Your included sightseeing will include a fair amount of walking, which at high elevations can be taxing for those in good physical condition. If you have any concerns about traveling to high altitudes, please consult with your healthcare provider.



    This program is available for U.S. Passport Holders only: A visa is required for entry into Tibet and is obtained on your behalf by Gate 1 Travel. This visa is required in addition to and separately from a China visa. Entry into Tibet is strictly controlled by the Chinese government, and rules for entry change regularly and without notice. At this time, Gate 1 is only able to obtain a Tibet visa for U.S. passport holders. Entry to Tibet is never guaranteed, regardless of nationality. On occasion, entry to Tibet may be prohibited entirely and without notice. In the event of a border closure, Gate 1 will make alternative arrangements for affected passengers to visit Guilin, in another area of China.


    Entry Requirements:
    Passengers traveling abroad require a passport valid for six months beyond their travel dates. All travelers are responsible to check if a visa is required for all countries on their itinerary. For visa information, check our Visas page.




    This trip is also available with the following variations:

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