14 Day China & Tibet Discovery

$2899
Land Only
$3519*
Air & Land
From

Tour Map


Select a Departure Date

2017 Dates & Prices
Dates Air & Land Land Only
$3519* $2899
$3579* $2949
$3709* $2999
$3809* $2999
$3779* $3059
$3769* $3059
Thu, Oct 19  (Sold Out) $3349* $2789
$3529* $2899

*Not Included:
Optional tours.


Additional Information:
Land only price does not include arrival/departure transfers, but does include flights Shanghai-Xian, Xian-Lhasa & Lhasa-Beijing.

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

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, China. Travel arrangements in these cases will be based upon the best available transportation and accommodations.

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.



Is This Trip Right for You?

This active program covers a good amount of ground each day. Expect from four to five hours walking on some touring days. The pace is moderate, however you will encounter some uneven surfaces, stairs, steps and significant slopes. The altitude, 11,000 feet above sea level in Lhasa may be a consideration for those who have heart conditions or are otherwise affected by high altitude. We suggest you check with your health-care provider before signing up for this tour.

Booking Details

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Flight Details

Accommodation Details



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Itinerary

DAY 1, Monday - Depart for China
Depart for China

DAY 2, Tuesday - Arrive in Shanghai
Arrive in cosmopolitan Shanghai, the fastest growing city in Asia, with its dramatic ever-changing skyline; transfer to your hotel. The rest of the day is at leisure to acclimate to this sparkling city and your new time zone
Overnight: Shanghai

DAY 3, Wednesday - Shanghai City Tour, Yu Yuan Gardens, Jade Buddha Temple
This morning, join your Tour Manager and fellow travelers at a briefing on the extraordinary journey that lies ahead in China and Tibet. Experience the old world charm of the Bund as you stroll along this park-like waterfront promenade surrounded by gorgeous vistas of old and new Shanghai. Along the way, visit a working silk carpet and embroidery shop, meet the craftsmen and learn more about this ancient Chinese skill. Afterwards, visit the classical Yu Yuan Gardens (Garden of Happiness) in the Old Quarter, built during the Ming Dynasty. This beautiful and serene sanctuary features pagodas, ponds, lakes, and magnificent pavilions. Lunch at a local Chinese restaurant. Next, on to the Jade Buddha Temple built during the Qing Dynasty to enshrine two stunning Buddha statues given as a gift from Burma. These rare and precious statues are carved with crystal-clear white jade, creating an aura of sanctity and purity. The rest of the afternoon is yours to discover the rhythm of this vivacious city on your own. Tonight, a Welcome Dinner and performance of the acclaimed Shanghai Acrobats**. These "death-defiers" will amaze you with their high-flying versatility, fearlessness, and flexibility. It’s a wonderful welcome to Shanghai!
Overnight: Shanghai
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

DAY 4, Thursday - Full Day in Shanghai
Enjoy a full day at leisure to explore Shanghai on your own. Or, join the optional tour to Hangzhou, with its enchanting natural beauty and fascinating cultural heritage, known as "Heaven on Earth." Travel aboard the new high-speed Bullet Train - a great experience! Once there, cruise on West Lake with its scenic beauty that blends naturally with the many surrounding historical and cultural sights. After lunch at a local restaurant return to Shanghai. Visit famous Nanking Road, with time to shop to your heart’s content in this elegant neighborhood with its astonishing array of international shops and boutiques
Optional: Full Day Hangzhou with Lunch
Overnight: Shanghai
Meals: Breakfast

DAY 5, Friday - Arrive in Xian, an Archaeological Treasure Trove
Depart today by plane to Xian, the ancient capital of eleven dynasties and an archaeological treasure trove; arrive and transfer to your hotel. Time to relax before the late afternoon visit to the Muslim district of Xian; here, you learn more about Chinese Muslims and watch their preparation of local foods for the market. This evening’s unique dumpling banquet, features over 20 different varieties of dumplings coupled with rice wine and hot pot soup. Enjoy this flavor-filled evening!
Overnight: Xian
Meals: Breakfast, Dinner

DAY 6, Saturday - Xian, Visit and Lunch at Donghan Village
Begin the day at the magnificent South Gate (Yongning Gate) of the massive ancient city walls of Xian, built in the old Tang Dynasty and now completely restored. For the adventurous, bikes will be provided if you opt to cycle around the wall’s perimeter and encircle this rectangle city - or choose a leisurely walk. Xi'an was built as a defensive walled city, and even today the landmark wall divides the inner and outer parts of the city. Then, immerse yourselves in the local culture on a memorable visit to Donghan Village in Huxian County. This special experience starts with a visit to the village; see how country life hasn’t changed over the years. You are then invited to tour a villager’s home and enjoy their warm hospitality and friendship over lunch. Participate in the preparation of the meal - you’ll be an expert Chinese noodle maker when you leave! After a discussion about daily life and other interesting topics, admire the colorful peasant painting style inspired by traditional crafts and include themes from everyday rural life. A treasure trove of paintings will be unveiled to you at a painting studio along with exhibits of the Chinese art of brush stroke paintings and calligraphy. This evening, attend the Tang Dynasty Show that includes a six-course Imperial dinner. You'll be entertained by Chang'an music and watch 1000-year-old dances performed by a passionate troupe. This historical performance is a national art, reflective of the glory and richness of China's Tang Dynasty
Overnight: Xian
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

DAY 7, Sunday - Xian Antiquities Tour with the Terra Cotta Warriors
Join the residents of Xian in Xingqing Park for morning exercise, along with singing and dancing - it’s a hub of activity. Afterwards, visit a lacquer furniture shop to see beautiful samples and learn more about this delicate Chinese technique, followed by lunch at a local restaurant. Then, a truly unforgettable experience! Arrive at the archaeological site of the magnificent Terra Cotta Warriors, a vast collection of more than 7,000 finely sculpted, life-sized soldiers, horses and chariots that were entombed with Qin Shi Huang, China’s first Emperor. This world-famous site, discovered by farmers in 1974 is still being excavated today, more than forty years since the time of its unearthing. Return to the hotel and get ready to enjoy dinner at a local restaurant
Overnight: Xian
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

DAY 8, Monday - Flight to Lhasa, Tibet*
A morning flight from Xian takes you on your journey to Lhasa, 11,000 feet above sea level, fabled capital of the Tibet autonomous region in China, nestled on the northern slopes of the mighty Himalayas. Arrive at your hotel with time to rest and adjust to the high elevation for the rest of the day. Tonight, dinner together at a local restaurant
Overnight: Lhasa
Meals: Breakfast, Dinner

DAY 9, Tuesday - Tour the Potala Palace
Stand in awe at the astonishing Potala Palace - one of the grandest monuments in all of Asia. Built in the 17th century, the palace boasts more than 1,000 rooms, including the Red Palace (where the Dalai Lama once lived), 10,000 active chapels, and a labyrinth of mysterious dungeons. It took over 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 once the world's tallest building before the creation of 20th century skyscrapers. After lunch at a local restaurant, visit the Norbulingka Palace, the former summer residence of the Dalai Lama and a UNESCO World Heritage Site. The palace constructed in the 18th century, is a masterpiece of Tibetan art. The rest of the afternoon at leisure. Later this evening, a traditional Tibetan dinner together, highlighted by a cultural performance
Overnight: Lhasa
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

DAY 10, Wednesday - Barkhor Street Bazaar, Jokhang Temple, Sera Monastery*
Morning visit to the bustling Barkhor Street Bazaar in the heart of Lhasa, a highlight of the city. Walk along the circular street filled with merchants and vendors offering a huge variety of local Tibetan art, crafts and even tasty snacks. Continue to the Jokhang Temple where you may observe the traditions of Tibetan Buddhism and hear the musical sounds of chanting sutras and the spinning of prayer wheels. Inside, thousands of yak-butter candles cast a glow beneath the enlightened gaze of the golden 7th century Jowo Shakyamuni Buddha statue. Stop at a Tibetan Art shop to collect souvenirs to bring home. Lunch at a local restaurant before visiting the Sera Monastery, one of Tibet's three most important university monasteries. In the afternoon, you can often see monks gathering to debate points of Buddhist learning while gesturing with elaborate and symbolic movements. In Lhasa, enjoy your last night with dinner at a popular restaurant
Overnight: Lhasa
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

DAY 11, Thursday - Travel to Beijing
Your flight from Tibet transports you to Beijing, the sprawling capital of modern China. Upon arrival, you’ll immediately see the huge architectural contrasts and sense the cultural changes in this mega metropolis. Dinner together at a local restaurant
Overnight: Beijing
Meals: Breakfast, Dinner

DAY 12, Friday - Great Wall of China, Visit Pandas at Beijing Zoo
An amazing day! Travel to the extraordinary 2000-year-old Great Wall of China, one of the most spectacular structures ever built by man, spanning nearly 4,000 miles of China's northern frontier. On your way, enter a jade shop to admire wares crafted with one of China's most precious and symbolic stones used for over 4000 years. Then arrive in a less-crowded section in Badaling to avoid crowds and have a more leisurely experience. Mount the ramparts of this ancient wonder to view beautiful mountain passes, plateaus and grasslands from this 7th century defensive fortification. To aid local organizations, plant a tree along the ancient paths to commemorate your visit to the Great Wall. Linger over lunch at a local restaurant before returning to Beijing and then be ready to view the striking ultra-modern architectural site built for the 2008 Beijing Olympics; see the gigantic National Stadium and the Olympic Village. End the day with a visit to the Beijing Zoo with its ingeniously designed Panda houses. Meet one of the adorable Giant Panda Bears, China’s most relaxed local celebrity and perhaps watch them munch on bamboo and watermelon!
Overnight: Beijing
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch

DAY 13, Saturday - Tiananmen Square, Forbidden City, Summer Palace
Your exploration of Beijing continues to huge Tiananmen Square, the largest public plaza in the world, built at the height of the Ming Dynasty. The square’s Gate of Heavenly Peace was once used as a staging ground for Imperial edicts and by Mao Zedong to declare the founding of the People’s Republic in 1949. Enter the Forbidden City, once residence of Chinese Emperors from the Ming to the Qing dynasties. This extraordinary walled complex, designated a UNESCO World Heritage Site, is truly a masterpiece of Chinese architecture; its complex consists of 800 buildings with more than 9,000 rooms. After lunch at a local restaurant, continue to a pearl shop to learn about this popular export. End the day with a drive outside the city to the fabled Summer Palace, resort of the Empress Dowager. Bid farewell to your Tour Manager and fellow travelers at tonight’s festive Peking Duck Dinner at a delightful restaurant
Overnight: Beijing
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

DAY 14, Sunday - Depart China
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.

**Please note: This show may be canceled locally by the theater and an alternate evening will be provided.

DAY 1, Thursday - Depart for China
Depart for China

DAY 2, Friday - Arrive in Shanghai
Arrive in cosmopolitan Shanghai, the fastest growing city in Asia, with its dramatic ever-changing skyline; transfer to your hotel. The rest of the day is at leisure to acclimate to this sparkling city and your new time zone
Overnight: Shanghai

DAY 3, Saturday - Shanghai City Tour, Yu Yuan Gardens, Jade Buddha Temple
This morning, join your Tour Manager and fellow travelers at a briefing on the extraordinary journey that lies ahead in China and Tibet. Experience the old world charm of the Bund as you stroll along this park-like waterfront promenade surrounded by gorgeous vistas of old and new Shanghai. Along the way, visit a working silk carpet and embroidery shop, meet the craftsmen and learn more about this ancient Chinese skill. Afterwards, visit the classical Yu Yuan Gardens (Garden of Happiness) in the Old Quarter, built during the Ming Dynasty. This beautiful and serene sanctuary features pagodas, ponds, lakes, and magnificent pavilions. Lunch at a local Chinese restaurant. Next, on to the Jade Buddha Temple built during the Qing Dynasty to enshrine two stunning Buddha statues given as a gift from Burma. These rare and precious statues are carved with crystal-clear white jade, creating an aura of sanctity and purity. The rest of the afternoon is yours to discover the rhythm of this vivacious city on your own. Tonight, a Welcome Dinner and performance of the acclaimed Shanghai Acrobats**. These "death-defiers" will amaze you with their high-flying versatility, fearlessness, and flexibility. It’s a wonderful welcome to Shanghai!
Overnight: Shanghai
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

DAY 4, Sunday - Full Day in Shanghai
Enjoy a full day at leisure to explore Shanghai on your own. Or, join the optional tour to Hangzhou, with its enchanting natural beauty and fascinating cultural heritage, known as "Heaven on Earth." Travel aboard the new high-speed Bullet Train - a great experience! Once there, cruise on West Lake with its scenic beauty that blends naturally with the many surrounding historical and cultural sights. After lunch at a local restaurant return to Shanghai. Visit famous Nanking Road, with time to shop to your heart’s content in this elegant neighborhood with its astonishing array of international shops and boutiques
Optional: Full Day Hangzhou with Lunch
Overnight: Shanghai
Meals: Breakfast

DAY 5, Monday - Arrive in Xian, an Archaeological Treasure Trove
Depart today by plane to Xian, the ancient capital of eleven dynasties and an archaeological treasure trove; arrive and transfer to your hotel. Time to relax before the late afternoon visit to the Muslim district of Xian; here, you learn more about Chinese Muslims and watch their preparation of local foods for the market. This evening’s unique dumpling banquet, features over 20 different varieties of dumplings coupled with rice wine and hot pot soup. Enjoy this flavor-filled evening!
Overnight: Xian
Meals: Breakfast, Dinner

DAY 6, Tuesday - Xian, Visit and Lunch at Donghan Village
Begin the day at the magnificent South Gate (Yongning Gate) of the massive ancient city walls of Xian, built in the old Tang Dynasty and now completely restored. For the adventurous, bikes will be provided if you opt to cycle around the wall’s perimeter and encircle this rectangle city - or choose a leisurely walk. Xi'an was built as a defensive walled city, and even today the landmark wall divides the inner and outer parts of the city. Then, immerse yourselves in the local culture on a memorable visit to Donghan Village in Huxian County. This special experience starts with a visit to the village; see how country life hasn’t changed over the years. You are then invited to tour a villager’s home and enjoy their warm hospitality and friendship over lunch. Participate in the preparation of the meal - you’ll be an expert Chinese noodle maker when you leave! After a discussion about daily life and other interesting topics, admire the colorful peasant painting style inspired by traditional crafts and include themes from everyday rural life. A treasure trove of paintings will be unveiled to you at a painting studio along with exhibits of the Chinese art of brush stroke paintings and calligraphy. This evening, attend the Tang Dynasty Show that includes a six-course Imperial dinner. You'll be entertained by Chang'an music and watch 1000-year-old dances performed by a passionate troupe. This historical performance is a national art, reflective of the glory and richness of China's Tang Dynasty
Overnight: Xian
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

DAY 7, Wednesday - Xian Antiquities Tour with the Terra Cotta Warriors
Join the residents of Xian in Xingqing Park for morning exercise, along with singing and dancing - it’s a hub of activity. Afterwards, visit a lacquer furniture shop to see beautiful samples and learn more about this delicate Chinese technique, followed by lunch at a local restaurant. Then, a truly unforgettable experience! Arrive at the archaeological site of the magnificent Terra Cotta Warriors, a vast collection of more than 7,000 finely sculpted, life-sized soldiers, horses and chariots that were entombed with Qin Shi Huang, China’s first Emperor. This world-famous site, discovered by farmers in 1974 is still being excavated today, more than forty years since the time of its unearthing. Return to the hotel and get ready to enjoy dinner at a local restaurant
Overnight: Xian
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

DAY 8, Thursday - Flight to Lhasa, Tibet*
A morning flight from Xian takes you on your journey to Lhasa, 11,000 feet above sea level, fabled capital of the Tibet autonomous region in China, nestled on the northern slopes of the mighty Himalayas. Arrive at your hotel with time to rest and adjust to the high elevation for the rest of the day. Tonight, dinner together at a local restaurant
Overnight: Lhasa
Meals: Breakfast, Dinner

DAY 9, Friday - Tour the Potala Palace, Tibet Museum*
Stand in awe at the astonishing Potala Palace - one of the grandest monuments in all of Asia. Built in the 17th century, the palace boasts more than 1,000 rooms, including the Red Palace (where the Dalai Lama once lived), 10,000 active chapels, and a labyrinth of mysterious dungeons. It took over 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 once the world's tallest building before the creation of 20th century skyscrapers. After lunch at a local restaurant, visit the Tibet Museum, with its striking Chinese and Tibetan architectural styles. The huge exhibition halls feature a rich collection of prehistoric cultural relics, Buddha statues, folk art, pottery and adornments made of gold, silver and jade. The rest of the afternoon at leisure. Later this evening, a traditional Tibetan dinner together, highlighted by a cultural performance
Overnight: Lhasa
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

DAY 10, Saturday - Barkhor Street Bazaar, Jokhang Temple, Sera Monastery*
Morning visit to the bustling Barkhor Street Bazaar in the heart of Lhasa, a highlight of the city. Walk along the circular street filled with merchants and vendors offering a huge variety of local Tibetan art, crafts and even tasty snacks. Continue to the Jokhang Temple where you may observe the traditions of Tibetan Buddhism and hear the musical sounds of chanting sutras and the spinning of prayer wheels. Inside, thousands of yak-butter candles cast a glow beneath the enlightened gaze of the golden 7th century Jowo Shakyamuni Buddha statue. Stop at a Tibetan Art shop to collect souvenirs to bring home. Lunch at a local restaurant before visiting the Sera Monastery, one of Tibet's three most important university monasteries. In the afternoon, you can often see monks gathering to debate points of Buddhist learning while gesturing with elaborate and symbolic movements. In Lhasa, enjoy your last night with dinner at a popular restaurant
Overnight: Lhasa
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

DAY 11, Sunday - Travel to Beijing
Your flight from Tibet transports you to Beijing, the sprawling capital of modern China. Upon arrival, you’ll immediately see the huge architectural contrasts and sense the cultural changes in this mega metropolis. Dinner together at a local restaurant
Overnight: Beijing
Meals: Breakfast, Dinner

DAY 12, Monday - Great Wall of China, Visit Pandas at Beijing Zoo
An amazing day! Travel to the extraordinary 2000-year-old Great Wall of China, one of the most spectacular structures ever built by man, spanning nearly 4,000 miles of China's northern frontier. On your way, enter a jade shop to admire wares crafted with one of China's most precious and symbolic stones used for over 4000 years. Then arrive in a less-crowded section in Badaling to avoid crowds and have a more leisurely experience. Mount the ramparts of this ancient wonder to view beautiful mountain passes, plateaus and grasslands from this 7th century defensive fortification. To aid local organizations, plant a tree along the ancient paths to commemorate your visit to the Great Wall. Linger over lunch at a local restaurant before returning to Beijing and then be ready to view the striking ultra-modern architectural site built for the 2008 Beijing Olympics; see the gigantic National Stadium and the Olympic Village. End the day with a visit to the Beijing Zoo with its ingeniously designed Panda houses. Meet one of the adorable Giant Panda Bears, China’s most relaxed local celebrity and perhaps watch them munch on bamboo and watermelon!
Overnight: Beijing
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch

DAY 13, Tuesday - Tiananmen Square, Forbidden City, Summer Palace
Your exploration of Beijing continues to huge Tiananmen Square, the largest public plaza in the world, built at the height of the Ming Dynasty. The square’s Gate of Heavenly Peace was once used as a staging ground for Imperial edicts and by Mao Zedong to declare the founding of the People’s Republic in 1949. Enter the Forbidden City, once residence of Chinese Emperors from the Ming to the Qing dynasties. This extraordinary walled complex, designated a UNESCO World Heritage Site, is truly a masterpiece of Chinese architecture; its complex consists of 800 buildings with more than 9,000 rooms. After lunch at a local restaurant, continue to a pearl shop to learn about this popular export. End the day with a drive outside the city to the fabled Summer Palace, resort of the Empress Dowager. Bid farewell to your Tour Manager and fellow travelers at tonight’s festive Peking Duck Dinner at a delightful restaurant
Overnight: Beijing
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

DAY 14, Wednesday - Depart China
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.

**Please note: This show may be canceled locally by the theater and an alternate evening will be provided.

Virgin Vacations itineraries may contain suggestions for activities for your leisure time; these suggestions do not constitute a recommendation nor an endorsement of any specific service provider and the decision to participate in any such activities should be made independently.

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Optional Tours

Full day tour to Hangzhou, with its enchanting natural beauty and fascinating cultural heritage, known as "Heaven on Earth." Travel aboard the new high-speed Bullet Train - a great experience! Once there, cruise on West Lake with its scenic beauty that blends naturally with the many surrounding historic and cultural sights. After lunch at a local restaurant return to Shanghai, visit famous Nanjing Road, with time to shop to your heart’s content in this elegant neighborhood with its astonishing array of international shops and boutiques.

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

Day #4 01 Apr 2017 - 31 Mar 2018 $99.00
Full Day Hangzhou & Nanjing Road by High Speed Train Thumbnail

Full day tour to Hangzhou, with its enchanting natural beauty and fascinating cultural heritage, known as "Heaven on Earth." Travel aboard the new high-speed Bullet Train - a great experience! Once there, cruise on West Lake with its scenic beauty that blends naturally with the many surrounding historic and cultural sights. After lunch at a local restaurant return to Shanghai, visit famous Nanjing Road, with time to shop to your heart’s content in this elegant neighborhood with its astonishing array of international shops and boutiques.

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

Day #4 01 Apr 2017 - 31 Mar 2018 $99.00
Full Day Hangzhou & Nanjing Road by High Speed Train Thumbnail