Link China’s highlights and lesser-known gems with first-class travel, private transfers and private tours throughout
- Take in Beijing's Great Wall and Xian's Terracotta Army
- Pause at ancient citadels, temples and gardens
- See the megacity of Shanghai
- Explore with first-class trains, lunches and private transfers
- Enjoy private tours each day, including rickshaw rides and canal cruises
- 4 Nights Beijing
- 2 Nights Pingyao
- 2 Nights Xian
- 2 Nights Luoyang
- 3 Nights Shanghai
City | History & culture | Rail journey
See China in style, with first-class bullet trains, private transfers and private tours included throughout. Travelling from Beijing’s Great-Wall and Forbidden-City icons to the glittering megacity of Shanghai, you’ll head off the beaten track to the ancient walled cities of Pingyao and Luoyang, taking in everything from Silk-Road temples to Chinese gardens and imposing citadels. Alongside lunch and private tours included each day, it’s all brought to life by the likes of rickshaw rides, canal cruises and Kungfu shows.
Day by day itinerary
After making use of your complimentary airport lounge access, board your overnight flight to China.
You’ll be met on arrival by a private driver, who’ll bring you to your central and delightfully contemporary accommodation; our Deluxe spa option even features a club lounge and city views. Your private touring begins the next day with Tiananmen Square’s spectacular gates and Soviet severity before you uncover the citadel-clad treasures of the Forbidden City – the world’s largest palace complex. Then, after the thousand-year-old spectacle of the Summer Palace, the following day is given over to exploring the Great Wall, your private driver and guide also mixing in the tree-lined Sacred Way’s sculpted Ming tombs. On the last day, you’ll visit the Temple of Heaven’s great, UENSCO-listed tiers before a rickshaw ride sees you among the maze of hutong laneways that form Beijing’s timber old town.
Stay: Capital Hotel (Superior) or Park Plaza (Deluxe)
Meals: B L
After a private transfer, you’ll board your first high-speed rail journey, travelling in first class through China’s rural heartlands to arrive at ancient city of Pingyao. Here, you’ll be met by a private driver and visit the Wang Family Compound – an 18th-century residence formed of great courtyards, halls and alleyways. Your hotel is almost as impressive, with its dark-wood fineries recalling its 200-year-old past life as a merchant’s mansion. Your private touring continues the next day, your guide showcasing the city’s World Heritage treasures. As China’s best-preserved ancient walled town, its lantern-lit lanes are lined with historic towers, elegant courtyards and beguiling temples.
Stay: Yide Hotel (Superior) or Yunjin Cheng Mansion (Deluxe)
Meals: B L
After breakfast, a private driver will see you to Taiyuan, pausing at the millennium-old Jinci Temple’s classical gardens and carved dragon shrines. Then, after taking in the grand 17th-century manor of the Chang Family Compound, you’ll board the high-speed train to Xian. Here, a private driver will see you to your central accommodation. While both options combine Chinese exoticism with contemporary delights, the Deluxe alternative is especially impressive. Your private touring the next day then focuses on a true world wonder – the thousand-strong Terracotta Army – before taking in Xian’s imposing city walls and what is China’s largest mosque. It’s a vision of Ming-dynasty grandeur.
Stay: Grand Dynasty Culture Hotel (Superior) or Grand Mercure (Deluxe)
Meals: B L
With a morning in Xian, your private tour will take in the Shaanxi History Museum and the Indian scriptures of the 7th-century Giant Wild Goose Pagoda – both visits bring the story of the Silk Road to life. Your first-class train trip to Luoyang will then be bookended by private transfers, seeing you to your central accommodation. Once a great capital, your private tour the next day will then showcase the city’s dynastical might. It’s where the first Buddhist temple was built on Chinese soil and where you’ll be treated to a Kungfu show in the UNESCO-listed Shaolin Temple, set to a mountainous backdrop.
Stay: Holiday Inn Express (Superior) or Hyatt Place (Deluxe)
Meals: B L
Your last private touring in Luoyang will centre on the great Longmen Caves, where over 100,000 Buddha images are carved into high cliff walls, stretching over a kilometre down the Yi River. Your last first-class train will again be knitted together by private transfers, seeing you to your central Shanghai accommodation. Your private tours here will then showcase everything from the ancient art of the world-class Shanghai Museum to the spectacular Yu Garden and the impossibly ornate Jade Buddha Temple. You’ll also be brought out to the ancient town of Suzhou, where you’ll visit its exotic Chinese gardens and enjoy a cruise along its Grand Canal, lined with pagodas and dotted with humpback bridges.
Stay: Sunrise on the Bund (Superior) or Guxiang Hotel (Deluxe)
Meals: B L
Depart for UK
After a final breakfast, a last private transfer will see you to the airport for your day flight home.
Any element of this itinerary can be adjusted to suit your needs. Just contact us to find out more.
15-day tailor-made rail journey from £3,455 pp
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