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China is one of a few countries where we feel safer taking a packaged tour.  We've found  a great one -- a tour around Mainland China by train!  We have customized the Dragon Odyssey Tour from away.com, and here is our current itinerary... 

9/16: Beijing

Arrive in Beijing today. Met by your guide and transferred to the Xinqiao Hotel for three nights.

9/17: Beijing

Today we have a full day excursion to the magnificent Great Wall, the only man-made object visible from moon by naked eyes.  After a very traditional northern Chinese style lunch served at a local restaurant, we return the city via the valley of Ming Tombs.  Enjoy the local famous Beijing Duck dinner tonight. (B, L, Duck dinner)

9/18: Beijing

After breakfast, you are off to see the sights, including the vast Tian An Men Square, and Ming treasures adorning the imperial palace in the once Forbidden City.  In the afternoon, more Ming extravagances are evident as you tour the exquisite architecture and vivid embellishment of the Temple of Heaven and the Summer Palace.  After dinner, attend the acrobatics show. (B, L, D)

9/19: Beijing/Xian by train T41 (1710 - 0647 next morning)

Explore this exciting city on your own today.  Transfer to the train station for your overnight train trip to Xian. (B)

9/20: Xian

Arrive Xian in the early morning, and transfer to the Xian Hotel for two nights.  Once called "Chang An" or 'Eternal Peace,' this ancient capital still retains its old city walls.  We also visit the Big Wild Goose Pagoda and the Provincial Museum.  (B, L)

9/21: Xian

We have an excursion to the world renowned Terra-cotta Warriors, guarding the tomb of the first emperor of Qin Dynasty for over 2000 years.  We also visit the Huaqin Hot Springs and Banpo Neolithic Museum.  This evening, relax and enjoy the dinner show of Tang Dynasty song and dance in the grand Tang Theater. (B, L, Dinner show)

9/22: Xian/Luoyang by train S62 (1130 - 1712)

Today we will take the train to the historical Luoyang, which in ancient times tied with Xian as a capital city and is now a modern industrial center on the Yellow River with some fascinating ancient monuments.  Upon arrival, you will be transferred to Friendship hotel. (B)

9/23: Luoyang

We spend our day visiting the famous Longmen Caves with its 97,300 statues of Buddhist carving created over a period of 1,000 years.  We also visit the Luoyang Museum and take a leisure walk in the old City. (B, L)

9/24: Luoyang/Nanjing by train T351 (2125 - 0926 next morning)

Enjoy your free time to explore the city.  Then we get on our overnight train to Nanjing. (B)

9/25: Nanjing

We make a spectacular arrival over the vast Yangtze River Bridge, an event usually heralded by rousing music played on the train's public address system.  Nanjing means "Southern capital" and is a pleasant city with brad, tree-lined avenues.  After lunch, we visit the Purple Hills overlooking the city, the impressive Mausoleum of Dr. Sun Yat Sen and Confucius Temple by the Qinhuai River.  Overnight at Mandarin Chamber Hotel. (L)

9/26: Nanjing/Suzhou by train G15 (1030-1336)

A short enjoyable train ride takes us to Suzhou that the Chinese describe as "a paradise on earth."  Take a scenic riverside walk from Surging Water Pavilion to the Garden of Master of the Nets and enjoy the scenery of traditional houses and small bridges often compared to the canal landscape of Venice.  On our way, see Twin Pagodas and Winding Garden for an example of the typical study-style architecture of the late Qing dynasty gardens.  We also visit the delightful Lingering Garden and the Silk Research Institute.  Overnight at garden style Nanlin Hotel. (B, L)

9/27: Suzhou/Guilin on MU5343 (0955 - 1210)

Transfer to Shanghai for your flight to Guilin.  Arrival transfer to your Park Hotel.  Rest of the day visit the Reed Flute Cave, Elephant Trunk Hill and local market. (B, L)

9/28: Guilin/Yangshuo

Take Li River cruise today to enjoy the breathtaking landscape along the river.  Disembark the cruise in Yangshuo.  Spend some time at the local antique market before check-in at your hotel.  Stay overnight at Paradise Resort Hotel. (B, L)

9/29: Yangshuo/Guilin/Guangzhou by train T38 (1800 - 0741) next morning

Explore this quiet town this morning by yourselves.  You can rent bikes from your hotel, or simply walk around to enjoy surrounding rice fields, clear rivers and misty mountains.  Drive back to Guilin in the afternoon for your overnight train to Guangzhou. (B)

9/30: Guangzhou

Arrive in Guangzhou today.  Transfer to Baiyun Hotel for 2 nights.  Rest of the day is free at your leisure.

10/1: Guangzhou

Full day visits to the Chan Clan Academy, six Banyan Tree Temple, Dr. Sun Yat Sen Memorial, and Qinping Market. (B, L)

10/2: Guangzhou/Hong Kong by train T817 (1550 - 1732)

Enjoy some free time in the morning.  Take afternoon train to Hong Kong. (B)


Check back for updates from our China adventures!

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