The Middle Kingdom

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11 Days
Spring, Summer, Fall, Winter
Beijing
Shanghai

Explore the antique treasures of Beijing and Xi’an, make a date with China’s cuddly national icon at Chengdu Panda Base in Sichuan, and experience the glitz and glamor of Shanghai, the “Paris of the East.”

About this Journey

Embark on a journey through China’s history, culture and natural beauty. Wander through Beijing’s imperial landmarks, examine ancient relics in Xi’an, and admire pandas in Chengdu before rounding off your travels in Shanghai – the “Paris of the East.” Along the way, walk upon the Great Wall, explore Xi’an’s Muslim Quarter, taste the famous spiciness of Sichuan cuisine, and enjoy a bird’s eye view of Shanghai from a Pudong skyscraper. Experience a colorful overview of the fabric of this 5,000-year-old country as you visit China’s palaces and pandas.

What we love
  • Enjoying exclusive access to Emperor Qianlong's private chambers in the Forbidden City
  • Exploring Xi'an's Muslim Quarter and visiting the city's Great Mosque
  • Wandering through the classical beauty of Shanghai's Yu Garden
Where you're going
The Middle Kingdom map
Itinerary

Day 1 - 3Beijing

Weave your way through Beijing’s ancient, interwoven hutong alleys • Visit the Forbidden City and enjoy exclusive access to the private chambers of Emperor Qianlong • Dine on Beijing’s signature Peking duck • Embark on a morning excursion along the majestic Great Wall, built to protect China’s heartland from invaders • Escape the crowds with your own exclusive champagne break arranged by WildChina • Delve into the heart of Beijing’s contemporary art scene at the 798 Art District, based rather ironically within an abandoned industrial complex • Learn the calming art of taichi in a private lesson at the Temple of Heaven • Enjoy high tea in the Aman Hotel at the Summer Palace.

Day 4 - 5Xi'an

Stroll through the bustling streets and stalls of the Muslim Quarter • Experience Xi’an with more than just your eyes by sampling some of Xi’an’s famous dumplings • Embark on a bike ride atop Xi’an’s ancient city wall • Learn about Xi’an’s 1,300 year old Muslim community by visiting the Great Mosque • Enjoy VIP access to underground murals from the Tang Dynasty at the Shaanxi Museum • View the proudly unflinching, life-sized Terracotta Warriors • Decipher the inscribed stone tablets inhabiting the Stele Forest before trying your hand at calligraphy with an expert provided by WildChina.

Day 6 - 8Chengdu

Wander through the bustling “broad and narrow” alleys, a refurbished historical area • Observe China’s iconic, cuddly panda at Chengdu Panda Base • Admire the ancient, alien-like sculptures of Sanxingdui Museum • Visit Qingyang Taoist Temple, considered the birthplace of Lao Tzu, the founder of Taoism • Visit Jinsha Archeological Museum, home to the relics of an ancient kingdom predating Chinese settlement • Learn to play mahjong like a local at Wangjianglou Park • Savor a dinner of Sichuan hotpot • Marvel at the rapid skill of “face-changing” at a Sichuan Opera show.

Day 9 - 10Shanghai

Enjoy lunch in the French Concession • Walk along the Bund, where the colonial buildings of Old Shanghai stand in sharp contrast to the futuristic skyscrapers of Pudong • Dine on delicately steamed dumplings • Marvel at a spellbinding ERA Acrobatics Show • Explore Shanghai Museum with a resident expert • Take in a bird’s eye view of Shanghai as you lunch in a Pudong skyscraper • Wander the maze of pavilions and bridges of Yu Garden, the most celebrated classical garden in Shanghai • Uncover the veiled stories of Shanghai’s Jewish Quarter, which went from burgeoning business center and political haven to windswept ghost town in a matter of decades.

Day 11Suzhou

Explore Tiger Hill and enjoy classic Chinese gardens • Learn how to make silks at Suzhou Museum • Free time to rest and relax.

Day 12Shanghai

Zip towards Pudong International Airport at well over 400km/hour on the Maglev • Your WildChina guide will help you check in for your departure flight.

Recommended Hotels

The Opposite House Beijing

Luxury Boutique

An artsy, modern boutique hotel featuring minimalist designs, The Opposite House offers luxury amenities amid Beijing’s happening Sanlitun area.

Sofitel Legend People's Grand Hotel Xi'an

5 star

The Sofitel Legend People’s Grand Hotel Xi’an is a modern escape inside the city walls, boasting luxurious art deco flair and landscaped gardens.

 

Ritz-Carlton Chengdu

5 star

Overlooking the provincial capital’s central Tianfu Square, the contemporary-styled Ritz-Carlton Chengdu offers guests a cosmopolitan experience in the heart of the city.

 

The Peninsula Shanghai

5 star

The Peninsula has a strong art deco influence reminiscent of 1930s Shanghai with luxurious rooms, restaurants and a rooftop bar overlooking the Bund.

 
Details

Recommended seasons

Spring

Summer

Fall

Winter

What’s Included

  • All overland transfers with private chauffeur and in-transport refreshments
  • All admission fees and activity expenses, as noted in the itinerary
  • Meals as noted in the itinerary with complimentary drinking water
  • Ground transportation, including airport transfers
  • Services of an English-speaking WildChina guide
  • Private chauffeur service to and from airport at start and end of your trip

What’s Excluded

  • International and domestic flights, domestic trains, plus relevant taxes
  • Chinese tourist visa, which is required for most foreign passport holders
  • Travel and medical insurance
  • Meals, apart from those included in the itinerary, and alcohol
  • Expenses of a personal nature
  • Excursions and activities not included in the itinerary
  • Discretionary gratuities for guides and drivers

Hotels

We would be delighted to recommend our favorite hotels for this journey. Please just fill up the form on the right of this page or email us via info@wildchina.com. One of our experienced travel designers will get back to you within 24 hours.

Why WildChina

We’re on the ground with you

Our team of advisors will design every detail of the trip with you through close consultation, then orchestrate your entire journey while on the ground. We’re in the same time zone as you, so we can fulfill requests and handle issues without a hitch. With over 40 staff in Beijing and an expansive network of operational partners across the country, we have the manpower to ensure your journey is safe, reliable and comfortable from beginning to end.

Your trip, your way

Flexibility is our highest-ranking compliment. We pull off journeys for pioneers with a 6-hour layover to Hollywood’s elite, and everywhere in between. Our team regularly pulls off unprecedented logistical feats; nearly any time frame or budget is within our realm. No matter how you wish to experience China, we are here to bring that dream to life.

We embody passion

WildChina guides are carefully handpicked for their knowledge and charisma, then meticulously trained to maintain our exceptional service standards. They are expert storytellers and passionate natives of the regions where they guide, having the perfect combination of local insights and service know-how to bring you seamless once-in-a- lifetime moments all across China.

The little things, the big picture

Supporting inspired local economies allows you to experience the soul of the destination, while also protecting and cultivating China’s artisanal culture. From watching artisans hand make shoes in Yunnan, to picking organic vegetables for dinner on a local farm in Fujian, our tours are designed to showcase and protect China’s heritage, both natural and human.