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Essence of China Tour 10 Days / 9 Nights WOW 4

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As the capital of China, Beijing is one of the world’s truly imposing cities, with a 3,000-year history and 11 million people. Covering 16,808 square kilometers in area, it is the political, cultural and economic center of the People’s Republic of China. Situated in northeast China, Beijing adjoins the Inner Mongolian Highland to the northwest and the Great Northern Plain to the south. Five rivers run through the city, connecting it to the eastern Bohai Sea. Administratively, the Beijing municipality equals the status of a province, reporting directly to the central government. Rich in history, Beijing has been China’s primary capital for more than seven centuries. China’s imperial past and political present meet at Tiananmen Square, where the Forbidden City palace of the emperors gives way to the Great Hall of the People congress building and the mausoleum of Chairman Mao Zedong. The old city walls have been replaced by ring roads, and many of the old residential districts of alleys and courtyard houses have been turned into high-rise hotels, office buildings, and department stores. Beijing, a dynamic city where the old and new intermingle, remains a magnet for visitors from inside and outside China.

Xi’an is a city with incredible history, as well as a prosperous modern city. As the capital city of Shaanxi province, it holds a key position in the fertile plain between the highland plateau of the north and the Qinling Mountains to the south. Xi’an has been the capital of eleven dynasties for more than 2000 years. Along with Rome and Constantinople, this city played a vital role in bridging the gap between east and west. There are important sites and relics in this city. The Terracotta Army of Emperor Qin is regarded as the eighth wonder of the world.

Shanghai is China’s most comprehensive industrial and commercial city, ranking the first in population and population density. As a tourist city, it attracts travelers from both home and abroad by its commercial activity rather than scenic beauty. Shanghai is situated on the bank of the Yangtze River Delta, with East River in the east and Hangzhou delta in the south. Housing a population of over 16 million at present, it was once a small town supported by fishing and weaving before the first Opium War. Late in 1990, the central government started developing the area, and has since become the well-known booming metropolis city.

1 Arrive in Beijing
After a comfortable flight, you’ll arrive at our home, Hong Kong. Transit to Beijing where you will be met by an English-speaking guide and transferred to the Hilton Doubletree for 3 nights stay. Free at leisure for the remainder of the day.
Please note: Impact of the current Beijing traffic situation may affect travel time to attractions such as the Great Wall and Ming Tomb. Depending on the day’s traffic situation, an additional 30-60 minutes of travel time may be incurred. Presently, travel time to the other venues such as Temple of Heaven, Summer Palace has not been affected.
2 Beijing Tour [B, L, D]
Visit Beijing’s most famous sights – Tiananmen Square, the Forbidden City, Beijing Imperial Palace and Temple of Heaven. In the afternoon visit Hutong, traditional courtyard homes, and see how local Beijing residents live.
3 Great Wall, Beijing National Stadium & National Aquatics Center [B, L, D]
In the morning, visit the Great Wall. The Great Wall is China’s most famous site and stretches over 3,700 miles. In the afternoon, enjoy exterior views of the Beijing National Stadium and National Aquatics Center. Famously known as “The Bird’s Nest” and “Water Cube”, these two structures hosted many competitions during the 2008 Summer Olympics.
4 Arrive in Xian [B]
Fly to Xian and transfer to Grand Mercure Xian at Renmin Square for 3 nights stay.
5 Terracotta Museum & Banpo Museum [B, L, D]
Explore the Terracotta Museum and see the buried treasures that took 38 years to complete. Visit the Banpo Museum, an excavation site housing fascinating ancient artifacts.
6 Shaanxi History Museum, Big Wild Goose Pagoda & Xian City Wall [B, L, D]
Visit the Shaanxi History Museum, explore ancient 13th century Bell Tower Square, and stroll the gardens of The North Square of Big Wild Goose Pagoda. You will also have an opportunity to visit the Xian City Wall, the most complete city wall survived in China.
7 Arrive in Shanghai [B]
Fly to Shanghai and transfer to Grand Mercure Shanghai Zhongya for 3 nights stay.
8 Shanghai Museum & The Bund [B, L, D]
Enjoy ancient Chinese art at the Shanghai Museum. Learn about Shanghai architecture with a visit to the Bund. The Bund is an area of Shanghai lined with historic buildings and a spectacular riverside promenade. End the day at a local tea shop.
9 Jade Buddha Monastery & Nanjing Road [B, L, D]
Enjoy the day exploring the Jade Buddha Monastery & shopping at Nanjing Road.
10 Return to Hong Kong [B]
Depart from Shanghai to Hong Kong and connect on Cathay Pacific to the U.S.

The price includes

  • Hotels
    • Doubletree by Hilton Beijing Hotel or similar hotel with Superior Room for 3 nights, with daily breakfast at hotel
    • Grand Mercure Xian on Renmin Square or similar hotel with Superior room for 3 nights stay, with daily breakfast at hotel.
    • Grand Mercure Zhongya Shanghai hotel or similar hotel with Superior room for 3 nights, with daily breakfast at hotel.
  • Entrance fees to sightseeing as stated in the itinerary
  • Airport transfers and ground transportation as stated in the itinerary
  • Meals as stated in the itinerary
    • B = Breakfast in hotel
    • L = Lunch outside of hotel at designated local restaurant
    • D = Dinner outside of hotel at designated local restaurant
  • Private English speaking tour guide, and driver
  • China domestic airfare (Economy Class)
    • Beijing to Xi'an
    • Xi'an to Shanghai
  • Inbound and outbound international air (Economy L Class) through the Cathay Pacific Package. Routing based on specific package purchased.

The price excludes

  • Gratuities for the Guides and Drivers
  • Incidentals in hotel such as dry cleaning, phone, mini bar
  • Any meals not mentioned in the itinerary
  • Travel Insurance
  • China visa

Notes

  • Hotels used may be changed prior to tour but will be replaced with similar category of hotels
  • Price and availability subject to change without notice until deposit is received
  • For Terms and Conditions, please go to Cathay Pacific's FAQ

Activities

Banpo Museum

Description : The Banpo Museumis located in the eastern outskirt of Xi'an City. As the first museum at the prehistoric site, It was built at the base of the excavations of the Banpo site. The Banpo site is a typical Neolithic matriarchal community of the Yangshao Culture dating back about 6,000 years. Here a lot of relic exhibited to show how ancient people.
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Beijing National Stadium

Description : The Beijing National Stadium, also known as the bird's nest, will be the main track and field stadium for the 2008 Summer Olympics and will be host to the Opening and Closing ceremonies. In 2002 Government officials engaged architects worldwide in a design competition. Pritzker Prize-winning architects Herzog & de Meuron collaborated with Arup Sport and China Architecture Design & Research Group to win the competition. Contemporary Chinese artist, Ai Weiwei, is the Artistic Consultant for design. The stadium will seat as many as 100,000 spectators during the Olympics, but this will be reduced to 80,000 after the games. The structural elements mutually support each other and converge into a grid-like formation - almost like a bird's nest with its interwoven twigs. The spatial effect of the stadium is novel and radical, yet simple and of an almost archaic immediacy, thus creating a unique historical landmark for the Olympics of 2008.
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Big Wild Goose Pagoda

Description : Big Wild Goose Pagoda is a well-preserved ancient building and a holy place for Buddhists. This attraction can be divided into three parts: the Big Wild Goose Pagoda, the Da Ci'en Temple, and the North Square of Big Wild Goose Pagoda. it attracts numerous visitors for its fame in the Buddhist religion, its simple but appealing style of construction, and its new square in front of the temple.
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Famous Local Calligrapher

Description : Visit a calligrapher who lives in Hutong during his whole life. His house is 300 years old. He knows much more about Hutong area.
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Hutong Tour

Description : Hutong is an ancient city alley or lane typical in Beijing. Surrounding the Forbidden City, many were built during the Yuan, Ming, and Qing dynasties. Hutong is composed by Siheyuan which the traditional residence of Beijingers, each consisting of a rectangular courtyard surrounded by one-storied tile-roofed houses, usually one to six meters wide. By visiting Hutong, it is a good way to see how traditional residents live and a kind of life style that keep several hundreds. Visit local family who live in Hutong and talk with them to known how they live. Taste the real Chinese family dishes in courtyard.
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Local family

Description : Spend one day in a Beijing local residence, experience the local life in the family for a while or just learn to cook in local flavor.
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Museum of Terracotta Warriors and Horses of Emperor Qin Shi Huang

Description : The Terracotta Warriors and Horses are the most significant archeological excavations of the 20th century. Upon ascending the throne at the age of 13 (in 246 BC), Qin Shi Huang, had work begun on his mausoleum. It took 11 years to finish. It is speculated that many buried treasures and sacrificial objects had accompanied the emperor in his after life. It is a sight not to be missed by any visitor to China.
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Nanjing Road

Description : Extending from the Huangpu River all the way to Tranquility and Peace Temple (Jing'ansi) and measuring five kilometers from west to east, this street passes through the city's center and is its busiest market. Along the street are more than 340 stores, including the city's largest department store, food store, medical shop, clothing store, and bookstore. The Peace Hotel, International hotel, and Overseas Chinese Hotel are all located on this street.
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National Aquatics Center (Water Cube)

Description : The Water Cube employs water as a structural and theatrical "leitmotiv" with the square, the primal shape of the house in Chinese tradition and mythology. The structure of the water cube is based on a unique, lightweight construction, developed by Arup and CSCEC with PTW, and derived from the structure of water in the state of aggregation of FOAM as deduced by. Behind the apparently random appearance hides a strict geometry found in natural systems such as crystals, cells and molecular structures. By applying novel materials and technology, the transparency and randomness is transposed into the inner and outer skins of ETFE cushions. Unlike traditional stadium structures with gigantic columns, beams, cables and back spans, to which a facade system is applied, in the water cube design the architectural space, structure and facade are one and the same element. Conceptually the square box and the interior spaces are carved out of an undefined cluster of foam bubbles, symbolizing a condition of nature that is transformed into a condition of culture. The appearance of the aquatic centre is a "cube of water molecules" - the WATERCUBE.
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Shaanxi History Museum

Description : Shaanxi History Museum Shaanxi Province is the birthplace of the ancient Chinese civilization. Xian City was the capital city in thirteen dynasties which in total lasted over 1100 years. The Shaanxi History Museum considers it an obligation to be a showcase of ancient civilizations. It was opened to the public in 1991. Over 700,000 people visit this national treasure each year.
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Shanghai Museum

Description : As a museum of ancient Chinese art, Shanghai Museum houses a collection of 120,000 precious works of art. Its rich and high-quality collection of ancient Chinese bronze, ceramics, painting and calligraphy is specially celebrated in the world. Its unique architectural form of a round top with a square base, symbolizing the ancient Chinese philosophy that the square earth is under the round sky, is a distinguished architectural combination of traditional feature and modern spirit. The present Shanghai Museum has eleven galleries and three special temporary exhibition halls. It extends warm welcome to the visitors from all over the world.
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Temple of Heaven

Description : Temple of Heaven was built in 1,420 in the Ming Dynasty, which is the most holy of all Beijing's imperial temples. This is where the Emperor came every winter solstice to worship heaven and to solemnly pray for a good harvest. True to the Chinese saying, “Round Heaven, Square Earth.” The park is in a square shape and the temple in a round shape which symbolizes that the emperor had to leave the Earth (represented by the square) for Heaven (represented by the round-roofed building).
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The Bund (Waitan)

Description : The Bund (Waitan) is one of the most recognizable architectural symbols of Shanghai. "Bund" derives from an Anglo-Indian word for an embankment along a muddy waterfront and that is what it was in the beginning when the first British company opened an office there in 1846. Located on the west bank of a bend (running north and south at this point) in the Huangpu River and just south of Suzhou Creek, the Bund became the site of some of the earliest foreign settlements after Shanghai was opened as one of five "Treaty Ports" in the Treaty of Nanjing that ended the Opium War in 1842. Because of its proximity to the Yangtze (Changjiang) River--the path into central China, Shanghai grew rapidly as the economic center of foreign interests.
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The Forbidden City

Description : Forbidden City was the imperial palace during the Ming and Qing dynasties which is the largest palace complex in the world. It surrounded by 10-meter high walls and a 52-meter wide moat. It covers 74 hectares and has 9,999 rooms. In the forbidden city, you can get more knowledge about the eastern architecture, splendid painted and beautiful craftwork.
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The Great Wall

Description : The Great Wall is perhaps China's most famous and most mythologized site. Several sections are conveniently visited from Beijing, including at Badaling, the most popular site, about 70 km (43 mi.) northwest of Beijing and at Mutianyu, 90 km (56 mi.) northeast of Beijing. These impressive brick and earth structures date from the Ming dynasty, when the wall was fortified against Mongol forces to the north. The Ming wall is about 26 feet tall and 23 feet wide at the base, and could accommodate up to six horsemen riding abreast. Watch towers, built on high points every 200-300 meters or so with small garrison forces, used fire signals or fireworks as a means of communication. These stretches of the wall are part of a system that extends from the Shanhaiguan fortress on the Bohai Gulf in the east to the Jiayuguan fortress in the west, altogether some 6000 km (3700 mi).
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The Jade Buddha Monastery

Description : The Jade Buddha Monastery is famous for the Jade Buddhas in it. During the rule of Emperor Guang Xu of the Qing dynasty, Hui Gen, an abbot from Putuo Mountain, went on a pilgrimage to Tibet traveling through China and finally arriving in Burma. He found Burma to be rich in jade and superb in craftsmanship. He wanted to bring carved jade Buddha back to China. He obtained donation of over 20,000 taels of silver and got special permission from the Burmese king to dig and select jade in the mountains. He hired excellent jade carvers to carve five jade Buddhas in various sizes, all decorated with treasured stones and big pearls. On his way back from Burma, he left two Buddha carvings in Shanghai for the Buddhist disciples there to worship.
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Tiananmen Square

Description : Tiananmen Square is the largest downtown square in the world. It covers an area of 44 hectares, big enough to hold one million people. Here is the most sacred place for Chinese people. Beijing is the heart of China, and Tiananmen Square is the heart of Beijing.
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Xian Museum

Description : The Xian Museum in the west displays more than 2,000 precious historical relics. In the central axis, there are the White-Clothing Pavilion, the Small Wild Goose Pagoda, the Sutra Depository, the Mahavira Hall (Daxiongbaodian) and the Maitreya Pavilion in the Jianfu Temple. Verdant trees, grass and beautiful flowers can be found throughout the time-honored building complex. Moreover, beside the museum sits a big circular square and an artificial lake with two stone arch bridges featuring delicate designs.
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Hotels

Doubletree by Hilton Beijing

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Description : The new hotel is conveniently situated next to the Central Official District of Beijing (COD) and Beijing's prestigious Financial Street business district. The hotel has 547 rooms.
Amenities: Automated teller (ATM) Baggage storage Beverage area, complimentary Concierge Desk Foreign currency exchange Furrier Gift shop Laundry/valet service Lounge Luggage hold Multi-lingual staff Room service Safety depost box
Restaurant: Chinese cuisine offering delicious food in a fantastic environment! The restaurant is located on the 3rd floor and features 12 private dining rooms.
Guest Rooms: Designed in a contemporary style, this 30 square meter room is equipped with working and seating areas, 32 inch flat TV, HSIA, iron/ironing board, standing shower, in room safe and coffee, tea maker.
Location: 168 Guang An Men Wai Avenue, Beijing, China 100055
Location Description: The Doubletree by Hilton Beijing hotel is located at the South West 2nd Ring Road, just 38 km/24 mi from Beijing Capital International Airport (PEK). Our stylish new hotel is conveniently situated next to the Central Official District of Beijing (COD) and Beijing's prestigious Financial Street business district. Our guests enjoy fast and easy access to all of Beijing's major attractions. The Doubletree by Hilton hotel is within 7 km/4 mi of the historic Dong Cheng District and Tian'anmen Square, the red-walled Forbidden City and Imperial Palace, Beijing Zoo, Panjia Yuan Antique Market and the Temple of Heaven.
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Grand Mercure Xian on Renmin Square

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Description : The only internationally-managed four-star hotel in Xian, Mercure Xian on Renmin Square extends to travellers superior and comfortable accommodation at reasonable rates. Elegant and cosy, it provides comprehensive deluxe facilities and services and an ideal location - within the Renmin Square Xian complex, with easy access to the city's major commercial district. The hotel has 103 rooms
Amenities: Safe voicemail Business centre International satellite TV programs Pay-per-view channel 24-hour room service No-smoking rooms. Reduced mobility room Smoke alarm and sprinkler systems
Restaurant: Guests enjoy access to a range of outlets at Sofitel Xian on Renmin Square, offering a choice of dining and entertainment.
Guest Rooms: Elegant, comfortable with high standards in services befitting a top-quality hotel, Mercure Xian on Renmin Square has 103 rooms and suites - all well-appointed with modern conveniences. For dining, recreation and business, the hotel has a breakfast dining room, seven function rooms and access to all dining and recreation facilities of its sister hotels.
Location: 319 Dongxin Street, Xian, Shaanxi Province 710004, People's Republic of China
Location Description: Located in the grounds of Renmin Square, in the heart of the commercial and government district, the hotel is minutes away from the major shopping centres and cultural sites and is an ideal choice for all travelers.
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Grand Mercure Zhong Ya Hotel Shanghai

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Description : Grand Mercure Shanghai Zhongya provides new luxury accommodation in a great city center location, just 10 minutes from major attractions like The Bund, People's Square, Xintiandi, while only a 3-minute walk to the railway station and subway lines 1,3 & 4 . With 288 guest rooms and suites, the hotel stands out for its trendy yet classic design features, excellent restaurant & entertainment facilities while the Crystal Ballroom and meeting rooms offer excellent conference and banquet facilities.
Amenities: Audible smoke alarms Air conditioning Cable color TV Mini-bar High speed transmission line Bath tub Safe deposit box Voice mail Restaurant Room service
Restaurant: Enjoy a variety of dining & entertainment facilities include an all day dining restaurant, a Chinese specialty restaurant and a trendy lobby lounge-bar, as well as 24 hour room service and banquet and meeting facilities.
Guest Rooms: The hotel boasts overall 288 rooms and 78 non-smoking rooms and 43 suits as well. All of these are provided with excellent amenities and perfect services.
Location: 330 Meiyuan Road Zhabei District 200070 SHANGHAI - CHINA
Location Description: From Pudong International Airport, take the A1 Expressway onto the A20 towards Lupu Bridge and Nanbei Elevated Road. The hotel is located at the corner of Meiyuan Road and Tianmu Road, near Railway Station. 2>Take the Airport Bus No.5 to Shanghai Railway Station.3>Take Maglev high-speed train to Longyang Station, interchange to Line 2 to People's Square and Line 1 to Shanghai Railway Station, Exit5 (South Square).
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