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Memories of China Travel

B-105: 17 Days China Tour from Auckland New Zealand to Hong Kong - Guangzhou Guilin - Yangshuo  Xian  Shanghai Beijing
  • Full Itinerary
Day01 New Zealand - Hong Kong
Your wonderful independent China tour from New Zealand begins with the oriental pearl, Hong Kong. Direct flights from New Zealand to Hong Kong are only available at Auckland International Airport. If you take flight CX198 from Cathay Pacific Airways, you will depart from Auckland at 13:20 and arrive at Hong Kong at 21:00 on the same day. The other flight NZ087 from Air New Zealand leaves at 23:55 and arrives at 07:30 the second day. Both flights will take about 11.5 hours. You may choose one based on your preference.

If starting China tours from Wellington, Christchurch, and Queenstown, you are recommended to connect the flight at Auckland. Here we would like to list several connecting flights from Wellington to Hong Kong for your reference and they all connect at Auckland: NZ476 1945/2050 and NZ087 2355/0730+1, NZ474 18:45/19:50 and NZ087 23:55/07:30+1, NZ420 09:45/10:50 and CX198 13:20/21:00.

The cities you are going to visit are mostly the international metropolises with convenient public transportation and clear English signage. All these make your independent exploration safe and easy. You can check this page for some useful phone numbers in China in case there is any emergency during your trip.
Day02 Hong Kong
Victoria Harbour, Hong Kong
Your independent China tour starts from today. Upon arrival at Hong Kong Airport, find the way to the hotel you booked in advance. We advise you live in Best Western Hotel Harbour View, located at No. 239 of Queen's Road West. You can take Airport Express Line to Hong Kong Station. Then leave from Exit C to find Central Subway Station. Take Island Line from the Central to Sai Ying Pun. Get out from Exit A1 and walk 130 yards westwards along Queen's Road West to find the hotel. You can also take a taxi directly from the airport at a cost of HK$315. The remaining day is for you to refresh from the jet lag.

Accommodation Suggestion: Best Western Hotel Harbour View
Day03 Hong Kong
Today our suggestion for your self-guided trip is visiting Wong Tai Sin Temple, Nan Lian Garden, Kowloon Walled City Park, Victoria Harbour, and Temple Street Night Market.

After breakfast in the hotel, you can walk northwards along the Eastern Street for about 100 yards and turn right into Des Voeux Road West to find Ko Shing Street Station. Take bus no. 905 and get off at Arran Street Station. Change to MTR Kwun Tong Line at the nearby Prince Edward Station. After four stops, get out from Exit A of Wong Tai Sin Station and walk north to the Wong Tai Sin Temple. You are suggested to spend two hours in this Taoist temple. After that, walk to Wong Tai Sin Road to the north of the temple to catch bus no. 72 and get off at Fung Tak Road (Chi Lin Nunnery) Station. Go across the road through an overpass to get to Nan Lian Garden. Following architectural style of the Tang Dynasty (618 – 907), this garden is made up of a group of buildings, ponds, and plants, offering a sense of peacefulness and tranquility amid this bustling and busy city.

In the afternoon, you can walk to Chi Lin Nunnery bus stop on the southern side of Fung Tak Road to take bus no. 10 towards Choi Wan and alight at Kowloon Walled City Park. Constructed on the original site of Kowloon Walled City, the park follows features of traditional Chinese gardens and keeps some of the relics in the Qing Dynasty (1644 - 1911). After that, take bus no. 1 from the park to the terminus, Star Ferry Station, to enjoy the Symphony of Lights of the Victoria Harbour at night. You can have your dinner at a nearby restaurant. If you are fond of local food, the Temple Street Night Market would be the best choice. There you could find all kinds of street food and knickknacks. You can walk eastwards along Salisbury Road and turn left into Nathan Road to take subway Tsuen Wan Line at Tsim Sha Tsui. Get off at Jordan Station after one stop and take the Exit A. Walk westwards for 300 yards along Jordan Road to find the Temple Street on your right.

For the way back to your hotel, you can go back to Jordan Station to take the Tsuen Wan Line to Admiralty Station and then take the Island Line to Sai Ying Pun Station. When alighting, walk back to your hotel and have a good rest.
Day04 Hong Kong - Guangzhou - Guilin
Our clients in front of Elephant Trunk Hill, Guilin
Today, you may have a whole morning exploring the Victoria Peak. In the afternoon, you are suggested to head for your next destination, Guilin.

After breakfast, you can check out the hotel and leave your luggage at the reception desk. Walk north along Eastern Street and go across the Des Voeux Road West to find the Eastern Street Station. You can either take tram North Point – Whitty Street, Whitty Street – Causeway Bay, Kennedy Town – Happy Valley, or Shau Kei Wan – Kennedy Town to Bank Street; or take bus 101 or 113 to Statue Square. Upon arrival, go eastwards along Queensway and turn right into Garden Road. Walk 130 yards down the road to the lower terminus of Peak Tram, Garden Road Station. Take the Peak Tram to the Victoria Peak, where you can get the full view of Hong Kong. After that, backtrack to your hotel and pick up your luggage.

You need to transit in Guangzhou to arrive in Guilin. First, you need to take Guangzhou-Hong Kong Through Train at Hung Hom Railway Station to Guangzhou East Railway Station. There are 12 through trains every day, so you can easily buy tickets upon your arrival at Hung Hom Station. But, you may need to book train tickets to Guilin in advance at your hotel.

You can either take Island Line at Sai Ying Pun Station to Hung Hom Station and use Exit C2 to get to the train station; or take bus 101 or 113 at Eastern Street Station on Des Voeux Road West to Cross Harbour Tunnel Station to find Hung Hom Railway Station on the opposite side of the road. We suggest you buy the ticket for Z814 train, which leaves Hong Kong at noon. After nearly two hours' trip, you can get to Guangzhou East Railway Station not too late and have enough time to get to Guangzhou South Railway Station to catch a high speed train to Guilin. Upon arrival at East Railway Station, please follow the signpost to take subway line 1 to Gongyuanqian and change to line 2 to Guangzhou South Railway Station. The trip should take around 50 minutes.

The high speed train will arrive at Guilin North Railway Station at dinner time. Upon arrival, take a taxi to the suggested hotel, Guilin Bravo Hotel, within the Two Rivers and Four Lakes Area. It should take around 30 minutes to get to the hotel from the train station and the taxi fare is CNY25.

Accommodation Suggestion: Guilin Bravo Hotel
Day05 Guilin
We suggest you visit the Reed Flute Cave, Elephant Trunk Hill, and the Two Rivers and Four Lakes Scenic Spot today.

After breakfast, spend around CNY25 taking a taxi to Reed Flute Cave in about 30 minutes. The recommended visiting time is two hours. After that, still take a taxi to Elephant Trunk Hill Park and stay there for an hour. Before entering the park, you may book the cruise ticket for the Two Rivers and Four Lakes at Wenchang Bridge Dock, near the front entrance of Elephant Trunk Hill. We recommend the night cruise as you can enjoy both wonderful performance and charming night view. Before boarding the cruise ship, you may have your dinner on Zhengyang Pedestrian Street, which is to the west of the north gate of Elephant Trunk Hill. Then, walk along Binjiang Road to Wenchang Bridge Dock to take the cruise. After that, hire a taxi back to your hotel at a cost of around CNY10.
Day06 Guilin - Yangshuo
Yangshuo rural people's life
Today, our recommendation is to hike along the Li River to Yangshuo County, which is the best part of Guilin. The trip would also be a lifelong memory as you can view beautiful scenery of green hills and clear water on the way. After breakfast, you may check out the hotel and take a taxi to Guilin Bus Station with a cost of CNY9 to catch a direct bus to Yangdi Dock. You need to wait for some time, as the bus only departs when there is no empty seat. If you don't want to wait, there are frequent buses to Yangshuo from Guilin Railway Station, which is 550 yards south of the Bus Station. You can take that bus and alight at Yangdi Lukou, and then transfer to a shuttle bus to Yangdi Dock.

Here goes the highlight! From Yangdi Dock, you can take a bamboo raft drifting all the way down the Li River to the Mural Hill. Then, either take the embankment on the eastern bank of the river or the country road on the western side to Xingping Old Town. There are also battery cars from Mural Hill Dock to Xingping. Upon arrival, stroll around the quaint town and find an authentic restaurant to feast yourself after the exhausting hiking. Afterwards, take a bus to Yangshuo from Xingping Bus Station, which is located opposite the Xingping Government.

Alternatively, you can take a taxi to Guilin Zhujiang Dock with a cost of CNY100 and then take the Li River cruise ship to Yangshuo. You can ask your hotel to book the cruise tickets beforehand.

Upon arrival in Yangshuo, please find a nearby hotel to dwell in. The Regency Holiday Hotel is a good choice. It is located at the prosperous West Street and you can take a walk to get there from Shuidongmen Dock after the cruise. At night, you can stroll along the West Street to have a taste of local cuisines and enjoy a relaxing night in a bar.

Accommodation Suggestion: Regency Holiday Hotel
Day07 Yangshuo
The charm of Yangshuo lies in hills, rivers, and countryside, so we suggest you ride a bicycle to find the beauty on your own. This is highly recommended by both group and backpacking travelers to China. It is easy to rent a bike with a cost of CNY 15~20 per day. You can take some water and food in case and start from your hotel. Head eastwards along Pantao Road for 350 yards, then turn left onto Kangzhan Road and head all the way south to view rural scenery on Ten-Mile Gallery. A one-way trip should take 1~2 hours and scenic areas of Big Banyan and Moon Hill mark the end of riding trip. There is the Tongmen Mountain Rock Climbing Site to the north of the Big Banyan and at the bank of Yulong River, attracting numerous rock-climbers from all around the world. After experienced this exciting activity, continue heading along the Ten-Mile Gallery for one mile to the Moon Hill. After feasting your eyes with picturesque scenery, ride along the country road back to Yangshuo.
Day08 Yangshuo - Guilin - Xian
Bicycle riding on Xian City Wall
In this afternoon, you are suggested to take a plane from Guilin to Xian, so please check out the hotel after breakfast. Then, take a battery car to Yangshuo North Bus Station. There are airport shuttle buses to Guilin Airport every two hours and you will arrive at the airport in around 1.5 hours. Please get to Guilin Airport at least two hours before the departure time of your flight.

Upon landing in Xian, find a local hotel to check in for a rest. We recommend the Skytel Xian in the middle of South Street, with Bell Tower and Drum Tower to the north. You can take Airport Bus Railway Station Line or Xian Hotel Line to the terminuses and then take a taxi to the hotel with a cost of CNY25+10. Alternatively, you can take a taxi from the airport with an approximate fare of CNY 120 per cab.

Accommodation Suggestion: Skytel Xian
Day09 Xian
Begin your China holiday tours in Xian with Shaanxi History Museum. After taking breakfast at the hotel, head 330 yards north along the South Street to Bell Tower (South) Station to hop onto bus no. 26 for seven stops to Cuihua Road and you will see the museum across the road when you alight. Visitors need to queue up for free entry tickets of the museum. However, you don't have to wait in line if you pay CNY20 at the ticket office for the special exhibition. It may be around lunch time when you get out of the museum. You can take bus no. 26 at the gate of the museum for one stop to Xiaozhai. Walk west to Middle Chang'an Road, where you can find Pizza Hut, McDonald, KFC, and many Chinese restaurants.

After lunch, walk to Xiaozhai Subway Station and take subway line 2 to Yongningmen Station. Take Exit D2 and head north to walk through Yongning Gate, the south gate of the City Wall. Turn right onto Shuncheng Road and walk eastwards to the Forest of Stone Steles Museum, where you will learn the art of Chinese calligraphy. Then walk back to Yongning Gate to climb onto the City Wall. You can either take a walk or hire a bike on the wall. Stay there for 1~2 hours and then get back to your hotel. You may go northwards from Yongning Gate for 450 yards to the hotel.
Day10 Xian - Shanghai
Terracotta Army
Our suggestion for today is to visit Terracotta Army Museum in the morning and then take an overnight train to Shanghai. You can check out the hotel after breakfast and then take a taxi to Xian Railway Station at a cost of CNY15. Leave your heavy bags at the Left Luggage Office west of the Station Exit. The fare is CNY5~10 for different sizes. You are suggested to buy tickets for direct train Z94, whose departure time is around 17:00, in advance at the ticket office. Then, find tourist bus no. 5 (306) to the east of the ticket office to get to the Terracotta Army Museum. The journey should take around 70 minutes and the bus fare costs CNY7. We advise you follow an audio guide or an English tour guide to learn the background stories of the museum. After two hours' staying there, you can have lunch in fast-food restaurants at the parking lot outside the museum and then still take the tourist bus no. 5 back to Xian Railway Station. It is better for you to get to the station before 16:00. Do not forget to withdraw your luggage before boarding the train.

Accommodation: Overnight soft sleeper train
Day11 Shanghai
You will arrive in Shanghai in the early morning. Please take a taxi from the railway station to Shanghai Bund Riverside Hotel at a cost of CNY20. As if it is too early to check in the hotel, you can leave your luggage at the front desk and start your Shanghai tours from Auckland.

Have breakfast in a nearby restaurant and walk east along East Beijing Road for 350 yards. Turn right onto Middle Jiangxi Road to take bus no. 64 at Middle Jiangxi Road East Beijing Road Station. Alight at Xinbeimen Station and walk south along Anren Street for 240 yards to visit Yuyuan Garden. Around noon, you can walk back to Xinbeimen Station to take bus no. 930 for three stops to People's Square. Have lunch in a nearby restaurant and walk to visit the Urban Planning Exhibition Center.

In the afternoon, you can walk north along Middle Xizang Road to the western end of East Nanjing Road, where you can find all kinds of restaurants and shopping malls along the way. Continue heading to the east and you will get to the Bund along the Huangpu River to enjoy the glamorous night scene.

When today's tour is finished, spend CNY15 hiring a taxi to the hotel and have a good rest for next day's Shanghai exploration.

Accommodation Suggestion: Shanghai Bund Riverside Hotel
Day12 Shanghai
Today you have a full day to explore the city and our suggestion for the first attraction is the Shanghai Museum. You can walk to East Nanjing Road to take subway line 2 to People's Square after one stop. Take Exit 1 and walk across the square to the museum.

After lunch, you can take subway line 8 to Lujiabang and change to line 9 to get to Dapu Bridge. Leave the station from Exit 1 and you will find Tianzifang right across the way. You can spend the whole afternoon wandering in the narrow alleys, old houses, and small shops. At night, it is also an ideal place to have dinner and enjoy a leisure drink. Afterwards, take a taxi back to your hotel with a fare of CNY25.
Day13 Shanghai - Beijing
Mutianyu Great Wall
Today you will go off to Beijing by high-speed trains. After breakfast, please check out the hotel and take subway line 2 or 10 to Hongqiao Railway Station in 50 minutes. There are around 40 high-speed trains leaving for Beijing per day. You can search the schedule and book tickets with us in advance. Collect the tickets when you arrive at the train station.

The train travels from Shanghai Hongqiao Station, passing by Suzhou, Nanjing, Jinan, and Tianjin. Finally, it would reach Beijing South Railway Station in about five hours. Upon arrival, you can hop on a taxi to the 3-star Chinese Culture Holiday Hotel, which is located near Wangfujing Street and Forbidden City. The taxi fare is approximately CNY30. Check in the hotel for a short rest.

The famous Wangfujing Street is only 15 minutes' walk from your hotel. You can walk east and turn right to Dafosi East Street. Head southwards for 700 yards and you will arrive at the northern end of the Wangfujing Street, where you can shop around and have dinner in a decent restaurant.

Accommodation Suggestion: Chinese Culture Holiday Hotel
Day14 Beijing
Begin your Beijing tour from Auckland with Tiananmen Square, the world's largest city square, and Forbidden City, the imperial palace of Ming and Qing Dynasties (1368 – 1911). Walk west across Meishuguan Back Street to take bus no. 2 at Kuanjie Lukou Nan Station to the Tiananmen East Station. Then you can go across the street to visit the square. After that, head north along an underpass to Tiananmen Tower and then Forbidden City. We suggest you follow the map or audio guide rent at the entrance and head northwards to visit the major halls and exhibitions. It could take you four or more hours to visit the palace; you can take some snacks with you and wear a pair of comfortable shoes. Leave the palace from the north gate, Gate of Divine Prowess, and have lunch in a nearby restaurant

Around noon, you can walk west along Jingshan Front Street in front of the Gate of Divine Prowess and turn right to West Jingshan Street. Head 350 yards north to Xiabanqiao bus stop to take bus no. 5 for six stops to Guozishi. Go northwards along the road for about 200 yards and turn left to Houhai Alley. The famous Shichahai Area is at the end of the alley. Spend the whole afternoon strolling around there and turn into a narrow hutong to enjoy local snacks. Take a taxi back to your hotel for a fare of CNY20.
Day15 Beijing
Our suggestion for today is a full day hiking trip to Mutianyu Great Wall. You can take a taxi to Dongzhimen Transport Hub to take bus no. 916 Express to the North Street in Huairou, and then hire a taxi to the Great Wall with a fare of CNY50~60. If you share the car with other visitors, it will be much cheaper, about CNY10 – 15 per person. You can take some snacks and bottled water along with you, as climbing the wall is quite energy-demanding. There are local and western restaurants near the attraction to get feasted after exhausting climbing. When you return to Dongzhimen, still take a taxi to the hotel.
Day16 Beijing
Nine-Dragon Screen in Beihai Park
After breakfast, start your independent exploration with Temple of Heaven, the imperial altar in the Ming and Qing Dynasties. From your hotel, you can walk west and go across Meishuguan Back Street to take bus no. 2 at Kuanjie Lukou Nan Station for seven stops to Tiantan Ximen, the West Gate of Temple of Heaven. You can not only see ancient buildings in the temple but also find many locals doing exercises in the park.

Leave the temple from its east gate and have lunch in a nearby restaurant. Then take bus no. 685 at Fahuasi Station on the eastern side of Tiantan Road. After 12 stops, you will get to Beihai Park, which was once a royal garden in ancient times and has a history of almost one thousand years. When the visit is over, take the east gate to leave the park and go along Zhishanmen Street all the way east to the West Gate of Jingshan Park. We suggest you arrive at the park before sunset so that you can enjoy gorgeous scene of golden roofs in the Forbidden City under the rosy sunset glow. After that, take a taxi back to the hotel.
Day17 Beijing - New Zealand
This is the final day of your China tour from Auckland. You may get up later and pack up for the journey back home. Please check out the hotel before 12:00 and take a taxi for nearly one hour's trip to the airport. We suggest you book a taxi through the hotel's reception in advance. You can also hire a taxi to get to Dongzhimen Transport Hub and take Airport Express there to get to the airport in 30 minutes.

From Beijing to Auckland, the first recommendation is the direct flight Air China CA783 0025/1710 with 12h45m flying time. As it is not available every day, you may also take China Eastern Airlines MU5183 0740/0950 and transit at Shanghai Pudong Airport by Air New Zealand NZ288 1415/0550 back to Auckland.

For those who go back to Wellington from Beijing, you can make transfer at Auckland, Melbourne or Sydney in Australia. The connecting city depends on your travel date.

There are two airports in Beijing, Capital Airport and Nanyuan Airport. The above flights all leave from Capital Airport. Please get to the airport 3 hours prior to the departure time of your international flight. To extend your stay in China, please check our City Packages for more itineraries.
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