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China & Holy Tibet

S-501: 11 Days Private Tour of Beijing - Lhasa - Xian - Shanghai
Tour Type: Private Tour, any parts of the itinerary can be customized
Guide & Driver: English-speaking guide, experienced driver with an air-conditioned vehicle
Meals: 10 western buffet breakfasts, 5 lunches with some being a la carte style
Tour Highlights:
  • Must-see sights in China - Mutianyu Great Wall, Forbidden City, Terracotta Warriors
  • Follow us on a Buddhist pilgrimage to Tibet & appreciate the profound culture
  • Have a leisurely walk or an exciting bicycle ride on the time-honored City Wall of Xian
  • View the soaring city skylines and feel the pulse of modern Shanghai
From $2499 per person Free Inquiry
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Day 1 Arrival in Beijing
Sincere greetings & airport-hotel transfer.
Upon your arrival today, our excellent English-speaking guide will be waiting for you outside the arrival hall of the airport after you finish the check-out procedures. A comfortable private transfer will take you to the hotel in downtown area. For the remaining time of the day, we intend to keep it free for you.

Meals: No meals, advice freely available
Day 2 Beijing
Tiananmen Square, Forbidden City, A la carte lunch, Summer Palace with boat ride on Kunming Lake. (B+L)
Toasting on the Great Wall
After breakfast, you will pay a visit to Tiananmen Square, the largest central city square in the world with an area of 440,000 square meters (108 acres), which can hold one million people for meeting at one time. The solemn flag ceremony is performed everyday at sunrise and sunset on the square drawing the attention of people who are passing there. Besides, Tiananmen Gate on the north of Chang'an Street across the square is the entrance to your next stop, the Forbidden City, which is an imperial palace complex of the Ming and the Qing dynasties and also a big museum. It tells people about the changes of the royal courts for about 600 years and the several thousand years' history of Chinese civilization. 

At noon, we will offer an a la carte lunch (valued at CNY150.00 per person and included in our price) for you to sample the pure Chinese delicacies. We will then transfer you to visit the Summer Palace, a fantastic resort for visitors to admire the peaceful landscape and magnificent architecture of the royal garden. Visitors may go to the Front Hill Area where most ancient constructions are located. The first construction you visit may be the Hall of Dispelling Clouds (Paiyundian). It is regarded as the most spectacular architectural complex of the Summer Palace. The Empress Dowager Cixi of the Qing Dynasty (1644-1911) used to celebrate her birthday here every year. After strolling around, you will board a boat to sightsee the beautiful Kunming Lake in the Summer Palace. 

Meals: Western buffet breakfast, A la carte lunch
Day 3 Beijing
Mutianyu Great Wall with a round-trip cable car, Olympic Bird's Nest, Temple of Heaven. (B)
Tiananmen Square
This morning you will journey to visit the famous Mutianyu Great Wall with the round way cable car. Although it is a little tiring to hike on the wall, the magnificent wall and the astonishing views are worth of your visit. The Great Wall, with a length of about 6,300 kilometers (3,915 miles), is one of the greatest miracles in the world. Like a huge dragon, it winds up and down across mountains, grasslands, deserts and plains, stretching from the Jiayuguan Pass in Gansu in the west to the Shanhaiguan Pass near the eastern seaside of our country.

Lunch is not included. On returning to the downtown, we will stop over at the Bird's Nest so that you can take some pictures outside. The next spot you will view is the Temple of Heaven, a delicate ancient architecture complex where the emperors offered sacrifices to the God of Heaven.

Meals: Western buffet breakfast
 Friendly Tips

The round-trip cable car fare at Mutianyu Great Wall is included in this tour price. We can also arrange for you to take the chairlift up and toboggan down the wall. Please contact your travel consultant if you are interested.
Day 4 Beijing - Lhasa
Fly to Lhasa. Airport-hotel transfer. (B)
A Tibetan prayer
It's time to say goodbye to our capital and fly to your onward destination - Lhasa this morning. You will be greeted by the local guide at the airport on time. In addition to a brief introduction of the city, the guide will also give you some useful tips on obviating high altitude reaction when the car is driving to the downtown area. Later what you need to do is have a good rest in your hotel to adapt yourself to the environment. 

Meals: Western buffet breakfast
Day 5 Lhasa
Tibet Museum, Sera Monastery, Norbulingka Park. (B+L)
Being reputed as 'City of Sunlight', this 1300-year-old city has long been the political, economic, cultural and religious centre of Tibet, as well as a heart home for many devout followers of the faith. The first spot you will visit is the Tibet Museum, which well describes the peculiar Tibetan culture and history via plenty of collections, including various artifacts, Buddha figures, handwritten ancient books, artistic Thangka paintings, ethnic handicrafts etc. After having lunch at a fancy local restaurant, you will get to the Sera Monastery, one of the greatest monasteries for Gelug Sect of Tibetan Buddhism and then the Norbulingka Park, the once summer house for generations of living Buddha and the nowadays local largest created garden.

Meals: Western buffet breakfast, Lunch
Day 6 Lhasa
Potala Palace, Jokhang Temple, Barkhor Street, A Nunnery. (B+L)
Lama's sutra-debating at the Sera Monastery
Another thrilling day starts with a visit to the Potala Palace. Highest in elevation, this palace, the city's landmark, is world-famed for its unique layout, civil engineering, metal smelting, painting, sculptures and so on. Next we will take you to discover the essence of this ancient city by visiting the Jokhang Temple and thriving bazaar of the Barkhor Street. You can learn about the Jokhang Temple's profound position after viewing its characteristic architectural style, as well as the thousands of never - extinguished butter - oil lamps. Afterwards, you will be guided to a Nunnery.

Meals: Western buffet breakfast, Lunch
Day 7 Lhasa - Xian
Fly to Xian. Airport-hotel transfer. (B)
Today you will take a late morning flight to Xian. Our local guide will expect you outside the baggage claim area of the airport and escort you to check in the hotel.

Meals: Western buffet breakfast
Day 8 Xian
Terracotta Army, Provincial History Museum, City Wall. (B)
Bicycle riding at sunset on Xian City Wall
This morning, you will visit the Terracotta Army, which is the largest underground military museum in the world. The lifelike soldiers and horses were orderly arranged in battle formations with distinct expressions on each face. Besides, the delicate Bronze Chariots and Horses and weapons are very impressive. 

Move to the Provincial History Museum, one of the most renowned history museums with abundant cultural relics. Then you will mount the well-preserved City Wall to explore the city's history from every of its bricks and titles. 

Meals: Western buffet breakfast
Day 9 Xian - Shanghai
Xian Museum and Small Wild Goose Pagoda, A local family visit and home-cooked lunch. Fly to Shanghai. Airport-hotel transfer. (B+L)
Our guests learning to make dumplings in a Chinese family home
This morning we will show you the most-visited Xian Museum including the Small Wild Goose Pagoda. This museum perfectly brings together the Buddhist architecture heritage of the Tang Dynasty, exhibition of various cultural treasures and pleasant scenic garden. 

Our hospitable local people welcome you to their home. It is also a good chance for you to have a nice break. With the guide's help, you can talk with the hosts on local people's life styles and visit their home. In addition, the hosts are very happy to invite you to have lunch (valued at CNY120.00 per person and included in our price) together at their home. They will prepare abundant home cooked dishes for you. If you are interested in cooking Chinese food, you can also go into the kitchen to learn with them step by step. 

Then we will see you off at the airport. You will fly to Shanghai. Our local guide will expect you at the airport and escort you to check in the hotel.

Meals: Western buffet breakfast, Home-cooked a la carte lunch
Day 10 Shanghai
Shanghai Museum, Yuyuan Garden, A la carte lunch, Huangpu River cruise, the Bund and an ancient cultural street. (B+L)
Shanghai Bund
An private elite sightseeing is arranged for you today. In the morning, you will go to see plenty of rare historical collections displayed in Shanghai Museum firstly. Covering an exhibition area of 12,000 square meters, it is one of the four best museums in our country and mainly features the bronze vessels, potteries, handwritings and paintings. The next stop is to the famous and elegant Yuyuan Garden. As one of the masterpieces of the classical gardens in southern region, it is marked by the ingenious design, delicate layout and elegant landscape. 

After that you will enjoy an a la carte lunch (valued at CNY150.00 per person and included in our price) at a noted local restaurant where you will taste authentic Shanghai cuisine. Traditionally called Benbang cuisine and formed by a complex flavor structure, cooking style and technique norms, the cuisine stresses the use of condiments while retaining the original flavors of the ingredients and has features of being fresh, smooth and crispy. 

In the afternoon, you will take a cruise on the Huangpu River and stroll along the Bund area to appreciate the various European buildings on the west side of Huangpu River and the modern skyscrapers on the opposite Pudong side. Finally our guide will take you to an old street, where you may find fun and relaxation.

Meals: Western buffet breakfast, A la carte lunch
Day 11 Departure from Shanghai
Hotel-airport transfer & see you off. A nice journey home! (B)
Today we will see you off on your international flight back home. Hope our dedicated services bring you a memorable, interesting and enjoyable private vacation. 

Meals: Western buffet breakfast
B-- Breakfast L-- Lunch D-- Dinner
Earlier Booking, Bigger Savings
12% off - book 2020 tours by Dec 31, 2019; 5% off - book 2019 tours 30 days in advance
Tour Prices with Standard Hotels
2-3 travelers4-5 travelers6-9 travelers
$2879 $2533$2589 $2278$2329 $2049
Tour Prices with Economy Hotels
2-3 travelers4-5 travelers6-9 travelers
$2789 $2454$2499 $2199$2239 $1970
  • Prices are per person in US Dollars based on double occupancy.
  • The prices in red reflect 12% discount.
  • Any parts of the itinerary e.g. tour length, activities & hotels can be tailored to your individual interests.
Price Includes
  • Domestic airfares
  • Hotel accommodation with breakfasts
  • A la carte lunches as itinerary specifies
  • Private English-speaking guides
  • Private drivers & air-conditioned vehicles
  • Entrance fees to tourist sites
  • Tibet Travel Permit
Price Excludes
  • International airfares
  • Entry Visa fees
  • Personal expenses
  • Tips or gratuities for guides and drivers
Why Travel With Us
  • Customer Reviews
  • Questions & Answers
  •  
    4.823 Reviews
    Susan S
    United States
    Posted on September 27, 2019
    We had a wonderful trip and although we were worried when we set off. The guides were simply brilliant at putting us at ease. Taxis are remarkably cheap! Eating out in alleys and markets is a bit worrying as it's not easy to identify what you are eating. We had great food however and it was always hot and very tasty. How wonderfully clean China is and graffiti free..! Chinese people are very friendly and we were not prepared for just how welcome they made us feel. They also smile a lot and had jokes with us, which we loved. The express train is a journey you should offer to visitors as it is quite simply amongst the best train services in the world, especially from Shanghai to Beijing. The soft sleeper is anything but soft. In fact it's pretty hard and not easy to get comfortable. We got 'ripped off' on the sleeper from Beijing to Xi-an paying Y220 for a bottle of wine and a beer. We bought the same on the sleeper from Xi-an to Shanghai and it cost Y120. I asked the train staff if they made a mistake and was shown the price list. This was the only bad experience we had on the whole trip. Very relaxing I believe. ... More
    John Choe
    South Korea
    Posted on September 14, 2019
    I want to say that we truly enjoyed your service and we would recommend your service to our friends who may travel to China in future. We genuinely liked Ms. Linda, our guide in Beijing, from the moment she introduced herself to us. She has a great personality, greeting us as if we are her old friends. I was genuinely surprised at her command of English. I myself speak English as a second language, but then I have lived in the States for the last forty some years. Linda I understood has not been abroad but her command of English was almost equal to or better than mine. But more than anything else we truly appreciated her expert and thorough knowledge of local tourist attractions.
    My wife constantly marveled at the driving skills of our driver Mr. Wong. Well, the traffic and some questionable driving habits of so many drivers in Beijing, Xi’an & Shanghai reminded me the traffic in Seoul, South Korea some twenty years ago. Mr. Wong navigated the messy traffic with authority, yet unhurried and steady handling of the vehicle. We also appreciated whenever he brought the car to the convenient places when Linda contacted him on the cell phone after our exhaustive visiting of the palaces or museums. He kept his car clean and it smelled nice all the time.
    There is one suggestion I'd like to propose: We believe it would be beneficial to your operation in general, if you'd allow more flexibility to the guide in the field. I understand that you have set itinerary according to the initial negotiation with the clients and as such you do not really want the field guide(s) deviate from the initial itinerary even if the client specifically request a change. From my past experience of managing a large service operation, I found that allowing the field guide a reasonable flexibility in dealing with a client does enhance the value of service. As a matter of fact the famous Chinese sage Suntzu emphasized long time ago the need of upholding the decision by a field general in the battle field. The reason I am telling you this is that we asked Linda to take us to the famous Chinese Tea Culture merchant at the end of our scheduled visit even though the place was not in the schedule. Linda was very reluctant to take us there because of your company rule (no shopping stops in the tour) which I do understand. However, I have to tell you that visiting the Tea place was one of the high lights of our trip and it made our trip one of the more memorable experiences, and we urge you to commend Linda for her flexibility in accommodating the customer's desire and make them happy which is the essence of any service operation. That’s a very slight problem that does not affect our satisfaction on your service. Thanks and we will use your company again.
    ... More
    Jean-Guy
    Canada
    Posted on September 09, 2019
    Here are my comments on S501
    All meals that we received were great. We come from a background that wasting food is not well seen. So in Shanghai much food was left on the table but then to the other places we were given the option to order the food. I'm sure you will agree that we went under the allowed amount and we still had plenty on the table and best of all we didn't leave much behind. So that we enjoyed very much. In Tibet, well it wasn't as clean except for breakfast which was good. Everywhere the service was fast, helpful and the guide was always there to help. If there is one place that we loved was the lunch we had in Beijing, the restaurant with the tree in the middle. The food, people, service, ambiance etc was great.
    All guides were excellent, and some went beyond their duties to make sure that we were comfortable. Snow and Penba are high on our list. We became family. Charlie, Jolie were very good. I do not have anything to say about any of them. All guides were very knowledgeable and very much willing to inform us. They were all very good to explain, and also I found them flexible with our time etc. We were not disappointed with anything and this comes from the entire group that is good hein. Their language was very good to us and we had absolutely no problem understand them. Snow and Jolie had a lot of knowledge they were amazing.
    All drivers were careful, helpful and secured the van for our things. The van was always clean and always had water available to us. There was good teamwork between the driver and the guide. Well appreciated.
    All of our hotels were good and some beyond expectations. Absolutely nothing to say about breakfast, it was super. Nice atmosphere in the morning. Hotels were clean and all of them in a good locations. Easy access.
    I’m really satisfied with this tour.
    ... More
    Janeway
    UK
    Posted on August 24, 2019
    This was a great tour. Candy in Beijing and Lhakton in Tibet even helped make this one of the best tours we have ever taken. If we ever go to China again, we would use your company. We have already recommended Travel China Guide to friends. Thank you for an enjoyable 11 days in China and thank you to Candy and Lhakton who helped make it so.
    Kerry Lew
    Australia
    Posted on August 19, 2019
    Below is my evaluation.
    We were happy with the service of the tour guide, they varied in abilities, but they all tried very hard to please us. On arrival, we were greeted by our guides at each airport and then at departure, the guides made sure we had our boarding passes and enter the gate before they would say good bye to us. The best guide was Judy in Xi'an. She was very professional, her English was excellent and her knowledge of Xi'an and the archaeological details were impressive. We were also impressed with the guide in Lhasa for his knowledge of history.
    Most of the meals were very good. We particularly enjoyed the food in Xi'an (Lunch), Lhasa the 1st Cantonese lunch, Shanghai lunch.
    Most of the hotels we stayed at were very good (4 stars) except for Lhasa.
    We had a very enjoyable experience with TCG, my husband and I would definitely use TCG again for our next trip in China.
    ... More
    Odie
    US
    Posted on August 16, 2019
    I would like to thank Travel China agency for organizing a wonderful experience for our group. All of the group members have remarked how good the organization was and how this contributed to the enjoyment of their China experience. It was so nice to meet you Abbey at our home visit in Xian, I was very surprised and delighted that I could personally thank you.
    Francine & Earl
    Canada
    Posted on August 09, 2019
    We do a great deal of world traveling and this trip made it to the top of our favorite trips list. The service we received from your organization was outstanding. We were very impressed that there was always someone to meet us at the arranged time, the cars were more than adequate for our luggage (and us), were very clean and the drivers friendly and had excellent driving skills. All of our meals were good, in particular the restaurant in Tibet with the dancers and singers. We had excellent guides and especially would recommend Linda in Beijing and Amy in Shanghai. We loved their exuberance and enthusiasm for their job. Francine likes to shop and having some female guides with similar inclination was perfect. There was a problem with our room in Xian and Lily was willing to spend as much time as needed to ensure we were satisfied. We appreciated the fact that our guide in Tibet was a native and was extremely knowledgeable about the region (sorry, but we cannot remember his name). We have spoken to several friends and raved about your company. We wish that you arranged trips in Malaysia or Japan as we have been so happy with you and are thinking of travel there. ... More
    Shan Guo
    Chapel Hill, NC, US
    Posted on August 02, 2019
    My guides were excellent and the driver was great and the car is very clean. I received two bottles of water everyday. Very good meals, although I wish there is more flexibility and options in choosing the restaurants. Thanks!
    Joy Ann
    Australia
    Posted on July 25, 2019
    I would like to sincerely thank the agents and guides of TravelChinaGuide for putting together a most memorable and wonderful trip. This was a trip of a lifetime! TCG made it easy and affordable and took care of absolutely everything! I very, very highly recommend them to anyone going to China.
    Juan Pablo
    Mexico
    Posted on July 14, 2019
    Our trip was perfect. Our guides were helpful, friendly and gracious. No complains just happiness! I already recommended their services to a friend of mine.
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