China Tour on a Budget

Escorted or Guided Tour China
China Tour on a Budget

A great China Tour came across my desk.

We are going May 13-28, 2020. 15 days 14 nights total.

$1299 plus international flights.

  • Beijing, Optional Xian, Suzhou, Hangzhou, Shanghai, Yangtze River Cruise, Chongqing, Chengdu.
  • Ample free time or options. Great for experienced travelers.
  • Lunch and dinner on your own. Pick the foods you want to try or go to night markets.
  • Travel with Dan and Shirley who have been to China multiple times.
  • Bulk airfare at great discounts, or fly premium economy.


  • Beijing 4 nights: Great Wall, Forbidden City, Tiananmen Square, Summer Palace.
  • Optional to Xi’an Terra-cotta Army available for $299 (Domestic flights included)
  • Suzhou 1 night: Shan Tang Street & Lingering Garden
  • Hangzhou 1 night: West Lake and Tea Village
  • Shanghai 2 nights: The Bund
  • Yangtze River Cruise 4 nights with Balcony Cabin
  • Chengdu 1 nights: Research Base of Giant Panda Breeding
  • $1299 Per Person plus Airfares ($600-$900)


Day 1

U.S. – Beijing, China (In-Flight Meals)

Day 2

Arrival in Beijing

Upon arrival, a tour representative will meet you at the airport and then assist you to transfer to your hotel.

Overnight Hotel: Beijing Gehua New Century Hotel (or Similar)

Day 3

Tiananmen Square & Forbidden City & Summer Palace (Breakfast)

Your exploration of Beijing begins with a visit to Tiananmen Square, one of the largest public squares in the world, and then takes in the Imperial Palace in the Forbidden City. The Forbidden City, also known officially as the Imperial Palace Museum, was originally constructed by the third Emperor of the Ming Dynasty, Emperor Yong Le, where 24 emperors once lived successionally. The palace was built between 1406 and 1420 but was burnt down, rebuilt, sacked and renovated countless times, so most of the architecture you can see today dates from the 1700s and onwards. Afterwards, visit a Pearl Factory to gain a little knowledge of fresh pearls.

In the afternoon, take the opportunity to join an optional tour ($50) to see Beijing’s 700 year old Hutong's (narrow lanes) area by old fashioned pedicab as well as visit a local family living in a courtyard style home to experience the local customs of old Beijing people and their unique architectural structure. The optional tour also includes a visit to Shichahai, a historic scenic area consisting of three lakes (Qianhai, meaning Front Sea; Houhai, meaning Back Sea and Xihai, meaning West Sea), surrounding places of historic interest and scenic beauty and remnants of old-style local residences, Hutong and Courtyard.

Optional Tour: $50- Hutongs and lunch with a local family

Meal(S): Breakfast

Overnight Hotel: Beijing Gehua New Century Hotel (or Similar)

Day 4

Great Wall of China (Breakfast)

On the way to the Great Wall, you will make a stop at a Jade Museum to learn the history of Jade. In Chinese, jade is pronounced as "Yu", and it has a history in China of at least four thousand years. Observe the skilled artisans at work as they create their intricate designs. Afterwards, take a scenic drive through the countryside and mountains to reach China's most renowned monument—the Great Wall. Visit the less-visited and more original Juyong Pass and try to avoid other sections which are the most accessible and consequently the most crowded. The Great Wall meanders through China's northern mountain ranges from the Yellow Sea to the Gobi Desert—a distance of over 3500 miles! Afterwards, visit traditional Chinese herbal shop to learn about the Chinese mystical arts of complementary or alternative medicine and the type of healing properties it offers.

Optional Tour: $50-The Golden Mask Dynasty

Meal(S): Breakfast

Overnight Hotel: Gehua New Century Hotel (or Similar)

Day 5

Beijing/Xi'an Optional (Breakfast)

Enjoy a free day in Beijing. Explore the capital of China on your own.

Alternatively, you can join an optional tour of Historic Tours of Xi'an Terracotta Warrior& Horses (must be booked at least 2 months before departures)

The highlight today is a visit to the Terracotta Warriors & Horses Museum to see the life-sized defending army to the first emperor of China, Qin Shi Huang. Unearthed near Xi’an, the hundreds of life-size sculptures of soldiers, chariots, and horses are considered a world wonder. Afterwards, visit the Terracotta Warriors Reproduction Factory.

Optional Tour: $299-Historic Tours of Xi'an Terracotta Warrior & Horses

Meal(s): Breakfast buffet

Overnight Hotel: Gehua New Century Hotel (or Similar)

**If you choose Xian optional tour on Day5, you will fly to Xian and stay overnight in Xian.

Day 6

Beijing/Xi'an-Shanghai-Suzhou by Flight & Bus (Breakfast)

Today we leave the ancient capital for Shanghai-the largest city and financial center of the country. Upon arrival take a coach bus to Suzhou-the home to the best China classic gardens. Suzhou, which dates back to 514 BC, is sometimes called the "Venice of the East". Visit Shan Tang Street, which has always been regarded as the first name of Suzhou ancient streets. It has a long history of about 1,100 years, its layout and architecture are the best to represent the characteristics of Suzhou's old alleys, and it has connections to many ancient Chinese celebrities and anecdotes. Take the opportunity to cruise along the Grand Canal (optional tours) to view life along China’s ancient waterway.

Optional Tours:$30-Grand Canal Cruise

Meal(s): Breakfast buffet

Overnight Hotel: Holiday Inn Jasmine Suzhou Hotel (or Similar)

Day 7

Suzhou – Hangzhou (Breakfast)

Today visit the famous Lingering Garden. The Lingering Garden is a renowned classical Chinese garden and is recognised with other classical Suzhou gardens as a UNESCO World Heritage Site. China is known for its silk, so of course, a visit to the Silk Spinning Factory is in order. Afterwards, drive to Hangzhou (approximately a 2-hour coach ride). Hangzhou is considered the tea capital of China, so a visit to the city just isn’t complete without a trip to a local tea house. Make a special visit to the Tea House at Meijiawu Tea Village located at the hinterland of West Lake Park which is considered one of the most important Longjing tea productions in China. Enjoy the natural environment and beautiful village scenery while learning more about their special tea culture and how to appreciate the sophisticated taste and aroma of Longjing tea. At the Tea House, learn how to make the Longjing Tea including tea leaves picking, frying and tasting.

Meal(s): Breakfast buffet

Overnight Hotel: Holiday Inn Suzhou Huirong Plaza (or Similar)

Day 8

Hangzhou – Shanghai (Breakfast)

This morning start this amazing day with a small boat ride on the West Lake another UNESCO World Heritage Site, which reveals the ethereal beauty of Hangzhou's willow draped islands. Afterwards, drive to Shanghai (approximately a 2-hour coach ride) to visit the famous Bund. Shanghai is divided by the Huangpu River into eastern and western sections. Modern mega high rises are seen on the eastern side while traditional European style architecture may be seen on the western side. The Bund is a five-block riverfront promenade with many of Shanghai's banks and trading houses. Tonight take the opportunity to watch a superb and thrilling Chinese Acrobatic Show “ERA: The Intersection of Time” (optional tours).

Optional Tours: $50- Chinese Acrobatic Show “ERA: The Intersection of Time”

Meal(s): Breakfast buffet

Overnight Hotel: Hotel: Regal Plaza Hotel&Residence (or Similar)

Day 9

Shanghai (Breakfast)

This morning step back in time at the Shanghai Museum with more than 120,000 art objects on show, including a priceless collection of jade, bronze, ceramics, paintings, and furniture. Enjoy some free time at leisure this afternoon or join an optional half-day tour of Shanghai (not included) including Yu Garden, believed to have been built in the Ming Dynasty, more than 400 years ago. The exquisite layout, beautiful scenery, and the artistic style of the garden architecture have made the garden one of the highlights of Shanghai. Other attractions include Xintiandi, Old Town and Nanjing Road. In the evening, take the opportunity to join the optional “Night Cruise on the Huangpu River” (optional tours).

Optional Tours: $30- Yu Garden & Old Town & Xintiandi & Nanjing Road; $50- Night Cruise on Huangpu River

Meal(s): Breakfast buffet

Overnight Hotel: Ramada Plaza Shanghai Caohejing Hotel (or Similar)

Day 10

Shanghai-Yichang-Yangtze River Cruise (Breakfast)

Today you will fly to Yichang-the starting point of upstream 5 days 4 nights Yangtze River Cruise. Depart Yichang - 9:00 pm: Sail from Yichang, the economic and cultural center of western Hubei Province.

Meal(S): Breakfast buffet

Overnight Hotel: Yangtze Cruise President series (or Similar)

Day 11

Xiling Gorge (Breakfast & Lunch & Dinner)

Three Gorges Dam/Xiling Gorge - Morning visit to the Three Gorges Dam at Sandouping, the largest in the world. Later sail through the Three Gorges Dam ship locks. Sail through Xiling Gorge, the longest (41 miles), and the deepest of the Three Gorges.

Additional optional Tribe of the Three Gorges Shore Excursion (river conditions permitting), offering an interesting glimpse into life in the Xiling Gorge region.

Meal(s): Breakfast buffet & Lunch & Dinner

Overnight Hotel: Yangtze Cruise President series (or Similar)

Day 12

“Small Gorge”/Wu Gorge/Quang Gorge (Breakfast & Lunch & Dinner)

Transfer to another vessel for a relaxing excursion through the attractive gorges of Goddess Stream. Depending on river conditions, an alternate excursion may be substituted to the gorges of Shennong Stream. Enter Wu Gorge, known for its quiet beauty, forest-covered mountains, and cliffs so sheer that the sun barely penetrates the precipices. Then sail through Qutang Gorge, the shortest (5 miles), narrowest (500 feet), and most dramatic gorge. Additional optional Shore Excursion to White Emperor City (river conditions permitting), an ancient city overlooking the western end of Qutang Gorge.

Meal(s): Breakfast buffet & Lunch & Dinner

Overnight Hotel: Yangtze Cruise President series (or Similar)

Day 13

Shibaozhai And Fengdu Ghost City (Breakfast & Lunch & Dinner)

Shibaozhai - Take a shore excursion to Shibaozhai, with its impressive wooden pagoda, appropriately named “The Pearl of the Yangtze”. Depending on river conditions, an alternate excursion may be substituted to Fengdu, visiting either the new relocation village built for families who have moved as a result of the Yangtze’s rising waters brought about by the Three Gorges Dam. Additional optional Shore Excursion to Fengdu’s “Ghost City” (river conditions permitting), known for its statues of ghosts and devils on Mingshan Hill.

Meal(s): Breakfast buffet & Lunch & Dinner

Overnight Hotel: Yangtze Cruise President series (or Similar)

Day 14

Chongqing-Chengdu-Giant Panda Breeding and Research Center (Breakfast)

Arrive Chongqing - 9:00 am: Disembark at picturesque Chongqing, the “Mountain City” Today you will take a coach bus or high-speed train to Chengdu, the home to the world-famous Giant Panda. You will be visiting the Giant Panda breeding and research center to see the lovely Giant Panda. Stay overnight in Chengdu.

Meal(s): Breakfast buffet

Overnight Hotel: Yinhe Dynasty Hotel

Day 15

Chengdu-Home (Breakfast)

Today after breakfast you will be taken to the airport for your flight home.

Meal(s): Breakfast buffet

Passport Information

 Passport copy is required for the booking.

 We will book your flights, hotel rooms and tour schedule according to the passport information you submit.

 It's required to renew your passport if it's expiring within 6 months of the return of your trip.

 Please notify us once your passport renewed, or you may have to pay a penalty from airline due to wrong TSA information.

 Passengers are responsible for ensuring that they have the proper travel documents and MUST CHECK with the respective consulate(s) or visa agency to determine whether any visas are required. We use

Reservation Changes

 If you want to customize your reservation, it is essential you let us know at the time of the booking.

 Changes to an existing reservation up to the final payment date, whatever the cause will incur a $50 per person charge plus any additional supplier fees, on/after the final payment date, cancellation terms will apply. This includes name changes/removal of any services such as optional tours & transfers etc.

 Prior to the departure date, there is a minimum fee of $50 per guest for any itinerary change or tour deviation made to a reservation after it has been confirmed. No further itinerary change or tour deviation is permitted after tour documents and/or tickets have been re-issued.

 If your reservation is changed by airlines or hotels, we will notify you as soon as possible.

Cancellation Policy

If canceled 60 or more days before departure: $300 plus air ticket penalties(If tickets are issued);

If canceled 30-60 days before departure: $600 plus air ticket penalties(If tickets are issued);

If canceled within 30 days before departure: no refund will be issued.

Travel Protection

Missing a vacation is bad enough. Losing the money you paid for your vacation is even worse. Therefore, we recommend Travel Protection that helps provide coverage for Trip Cancellation, Interruption, Baggage Loss, Medical Expenses or more.


$1299 per person double occupancy.


1. 50% deposit for all tour packages are required at the time of bookings.

2. Full payment is required no later than 2 months before departures or when we issue flight tickets for you.

3. Travel protection premiums are not included by the deposit.

Late Payment:

If there is any outstanding balance past your final payment due date listed on your invoice, all travel services are subject to automatic cancellation. A service reinstatement fee of $50 will be added to your invoice and must be paid in advance in order to apply for reconfirmation of services.

Terms, conditions and restrictions apply; pricing, availability, and other details subject to change and/ or apply to US or Canadian residents. Please confirm details and booking information with your travel advisor.