Captivating China

This tour combines the history of Beijing with the pandas in Chengdu, the Warriors in Xian, the bustle of Shanghai and a three night Yangtze River Cruise giving you the very best China has to offer on this tour exclusively for solo travellers.

Places Visited

New Zealand - Beijing (3N) - Xian (2N) - Chengdu (1N) - Yangtze River Cruise (3N) - Shanghai (3N)

Fly overnight to China's historical capital, Beijing. Depending on your time of arrival, the rest of the day is yours to start soaking up the local culture.
Meet the group in the hotel lobby and together begin your first day of exploring China! We start in Beijing's symbolic heart, Tiananmen Square, before entering the sprawling magnificence of the Forbidden City to explore this complex full of imperial riches. Together, we will then take a ride through a traditional hutong neighbourhood on rickshaws, popping in to visit a family at home for lunch and to learn about life in the hutongs. This afternoon, soak up the harmonious ambience of the glorious Temple of Heaven, where we can mingle with the locals and watch or participate as they practise Tai Chi, dance or play cards. Tonight, the group will dine on a local delicacy Peking Duck. (B,L,D)
This morning is dedicated to China's most iconic sight - the Great Wall. Taking a walk on this incredible structure is the best way to appreciate its sheer magnificence and dramatic scenery that surrounds it. This afternoon, stroll through the idyllic landscapes of the Summer Palace, discovering traditional Chinese gardens and see the exquisite architecture. (B,L)
Fly to the ancient city of Xian. We start at the lovely Little Wild Goose Pagoda, where the group will try 'Guohua', traditional Chinese painting with black ink, to decorate a fan. Next, we will stroll through the atmospheric Muslim Quarter, browsing the food stalls and learning about the significant importance of this city as the start of the Silk Road. This evening, enjoy a delicious feast of traditional Shui Jiao dumplings followed by a performance of Tang Dynasty dancing. (B,L,D)
After their fortuitous discovery in the 1970s, the Terracotta Army of China’s first emperor, Qin Shi Huang, has intrigued visitors ever since. We spend the morning admiring the enigmatic ranks of the life-size warriors and horses, before stopping by the workshop of the craftsmen who recreate Terracotta Warriors in the style of their ancient counterparts. Later, we will enjoy a stroll on the
As a group we will take the bullet train to the city of Chengdu, the capital of Sichuan province. On arrival, we will take a walk through People’s Park and visit the fascinating Matchmaker’s Corner where parents search for worthy suitors for their children. Enjoy a delicious Sichuanese meal for dinner. (B,L,D)
A visit this morning to Chengdu's famous Panda Conservation Centre allows us to learn about China’s famous bears and we also get a chance to see them up close as they munch through piles of bamboo and play. We then continue to Chongqing where we will board our Yangtze River Cruise vessel. (B,L,D)
Over the next three days as we cruise downstream, we will pass through some of China's most celebrated scenery – be prepared for one breathtaking panorama after another. Join side trips and shore excursions, ending with the Three Gorges Dam, a massive and impressive feat of engineering. (B,L,D)
Disembark the cruise vessel in Yichang and transfer to Wuhan; from here we fly to the exuberant and cosmopolitan city of Shanghai, also known as the 'Paris of the East'. (B,L)
This morning, the group will visit the peaceful Yu Garden, old town, Silk Factory and stroll along the Bund. After lunch together, the afternoon is at your leisure. This evening, we will all head to see the spectacular ERA Show, a mesmerising display of martial arts and acrobatics. (B,L)
Today is a free day to spend in Shanghai as you wish. Choose to further explore this city on your own or with your new-found friends or choose from optional tours (at your own expense) including a ride on the super speedy Maglev train or ascend Jin Mao Tower. This evening the group will meet for a panoramic cruise on the Huangpu River before a final dinner together where we can reflect on the adventure we've shared. (B,D)
Fly to New Zealand, arriving home the following day. (B)

Also Available

Tailor Your Tour

If you like most of the itinerary which we have suggested but you'd like to change the route and the accommodation, speak to our specialist Tailormade team, who can build your perfect itinerary based around where you would like to go, what you would like to see and how much you'd like to spend. Just call us on 0800 936 3998 and we'll help plan your dream holiday.

Tour prices are per person, twin share departing Auckland. Regional departures available on request. Additional charges: Tipping is payable on arrival in destination (see Additional Price Information below).

Additional Price Information:

Land Only (Beijing to Shanghai), 13 days From $4,780 per person twin share
Customary tipping paid locally RMB600
Tour availability is updated each Monday. While every effort is made to ensure availability status is current, it is advisable to contact our reservations department on 0800 936 3998. Limited seats denotes 4 seats or less available.

A visa is required by all nationalities. A single entry visa should be arranged in advance of travel.
Unlike many other tour operators, we include your entry visas in the price of our tour. We handle the entire visa process – all you need to do is fill out the form and send your passport to us. We are always on hand to help you with any questions or queries you might have when completing the form. 

Phone Calls
International and domestic calls can be made from your hotel room. Calls may cost £1 per minute to the UK, plus a 10% service charge, but will vary by location. To call the UK the international access code is 00, followed by the country code 44, then the local area code (omitting the first 0), then the number. To call Wendy Wu Tours it is 00 44 207 403 7860. Emergency 24 hour telephone (out of office hours) is 00 44 7984 041 625.
Mobile Phones
Mobile phones are quite popular in China and you will find high quality coverage. China has active roaming agreements with all phone carriers; however SMS and call rates can be expensive. We recommend that you contact your mobile supplier if you intend to use international roaming during your holiday and ensure you investigate all associated costs before you leave the UK.
Internet & Email
Internet cafes can be found in all major cities and even in some small towns. This is often the easiest and cheapest way to stay in touch. Most hotels have a business centre with internet access, but at a slightly higher rate. Some hotels may have wifi which usually comes at an additional cost and may only be available in hotel lobbies. 

Tipping is an expected element in the tourism industry today and China is no exception. Many passengers are often uncertain of how much to tip so we have established a tipping system whereby every passenger gives a set amount (in US Dollars) to the National Escort who will distribute the amount appropriately. On multi-country tips, this amount will be paid in stages on arrival in each country. If there is no National Escort, you will need to give your money to your Local Guides and tipping amounts for each city will be shown in your final itinerary. The amount for the kitty is calculated for each tour depending on the length, group size and services used during the trip.
For independent passengers, or group passengers with pre/post tour arrangements, you should allow USD5-10 per person per day.
We will indicate the tipping amounts in your final documents for guidance.

Shopping can be a fun and entertaining component to any travel adventure, and China has a vast array of shopping opportunities for those who love to seek out a bargain. From hand carved jade to local silk products or pearls from the South China Sea – the variety and choice can seem endless.
In keeping with most people’s interests whilst on holiday, your tour will include a reasonable number of opportunities to shop for local goods and souvenirs.
We have included visits to establishments that not only provide an opportunity to purchase a locally produced, great-value souvenir; but you’ll witness first-hand how these local products are made, their history and how they support the local economy. We are aware that people like to take home souvenirs, so we endeavour to ensure the shops you visit have a reputation for quality, honesty, and authenticity – we do our best to ensure that you don’t get ripped off. 

The cost of all meals is included in your group tour cost.
Breakfast is served in the hotel and usually includes western dishes. As is traditional in China, lunch and dinner consists of small dishes of local cuisine which is then placed on a ‘Lazy Susan’ so you can experience the variety of speciality dishes. In China all the dishes are served in various styles and brought out to the table for everyone to share. The amount served is more than ample for the whole group. We aim to cater to the tastes of the majority of people and so the food is not too spicy or unusual in taste.
Each individual place setting will consist of a bowl of fan (rice), a pair of chopsticks (you may request western cutlery if you prefer), a flat bottomed soup spoon and a saucer. Chinese food is usually served in courses where a typical meal will consist of rice, one to four meat or fish dishes, two vegetable dishes, and one soup dish. Almost all food is cut into bite sized pieces. The centre of the meal is the fan or rice. The meats and vegetables that we think of as the focus of the meal are known as ts’ai, which roughly translates as ‘side dishes’. Fish is not always available, particularly outside of the bigger cities.
The Chinese are also not big on desserts with meals normally complemented with fruit to clean and refresh the palate.
Sichuan cuisine is distinguished by its use of ginger, chilli and the ‘Sichuan peppercorn’ called the fagara. Each meal will usually have some mild dishes but many of the local speciality dishes will be hot. If your group find there are not enough mild dishes served, please inform your National Escort/Local Guide so that they may resolve the problem for the next meal.
If you would like to drink beer, soft drink or bottled water with your meals, payment is to be made directly to the restaurant staff. Beer is traditionally consumed in small glasses; not the larger pints glasses that you may be used to.
Green tea is sometimes provided complimentary. All other drinks will be at your own expense.
If you have booked a tour that does not include all meals, your local guides will be able to recommend a variety of restaurants to meet your taste and budget.
It is possible to buy snacks in supermarkets within major towns or cities. Alternatively, you may also like to bring comforts like cereal, biscuits, muesli bars, and tea/coffee from home.
Any food/diet requests MUST be specified at the time of booking and you should mention it again to the National Escort/ Local Guides when you meet them – they will do their utmost to cater for any special requests, such as vegetarian meals or food to be avoided in case of allergies.

Why Book This Tour?

Designed exclusively for customers travelling solo, these tours provide a ready-made group of like-minded travellers to enjoy your holiday with. You will be looked after all the way by an expert guide who will involve you in the group activities, discovering the sights and experiencing cultural activities. A room of your own is guaranteed with no supplement to pay.