15 Days Giant Pandas and Tibet Soul
Experience the drama of China’s past and present, diverse landscapes,
the in-depth cultural roots and uncover the mystery of Tibet. This
itinerary works brilliantly for those seeking for culture, nature,
luxury travel experience and a twist of adventure. After discovering the
historical marvels of Beijing and Xian, continue with a spiritual
journey to Tibet for its fascinating Buddhist culture and unique scenery
of striking mountains and holy lakes. Visit giant pandas in Chengdu and
finish your trip perfectly in Shanghai.
- Witness the spectacle on the roof of the world
- Explore the imperial palaces and sacred sites
- Hands-on cookery lesson
- Enjoy plenty of time meeting giant pandas
Customizable Tour Itinerary
Start your journey in Beijing, China’s capital city since the 13th
Century, where you can soak in historical atmosphere and witness
China’s rapid development simultaneously. Be greeted and transferred to
your luxury hotel in downtown Beijing. Relax at hotel to minimize jet
lag. Alternatively your guide can give great advice on restaurants or
nearby places to idle around.
Beijing Double Happiness Courtyard Hotel,
Beijing Fairmont Hotel,
Beijing Aman Summer Palace
This morning you’ll feel journey back Chairman Mao Era as you walk across Tiananmen Square. Through the solemn red-painted gate to get into Palace Museum – China’s largest and best museum was actually the imperial palace of Ming and Qing Dynasty named Forbidden City. Admire its rich collections of relics dating to different historical periods.
View China’s most remarkable garden – Summer Palace,
favorably located at the Wanshou Hill and with the rolling West Hills
as its backdrop. Based on the landscape of Kunming Lake and by using
the garden technology of Jiangnan classical garden, Summer Palace is
praised as a museum of Chinese garden.
This evening, attend a Shaolin Kungfu Show (optional).
Despite the historical changes for over 2000 years, the
Great Wall of China stands still majestically on the mountain peaks of
North China. Visit a lesser-tourist and more authentic Great Wall – Mutianyu Great Wall. Hike up and down to get through the beacon towers and view the other walls on the distant mountains.
In the afternoon, hop in a vintage richshaw through hutongs
– those narrow alleyways are in an intricate layout like a
checker-board pattern. For the past 700+ years, hutongs, with its
quadrangle complex and cultural sites, have experienced long historical
changes and become a unique treasure of Beijing.
Tonight, enjoy crispy Peking Duck for dinner (optional)
You may have heard that activities to worship heaven played a crucial role in the ancient China Empire. The Temple of Heaven you
visit today was just the most important site for kings to hold these
activities during the Ming and Qing Dynasties. The solemn and
magnificent architectures remind intact today.
Visit a local flea market in Beijing – Panjiayuan Market,
which is at its best and busiest at the weekend. With all sorts of
secondhand goods from jades, jewels and ancient coins to stamps and
furniture, Panjiayuan is praised as China’s biggest “open-air museum”.
Take a high speed train from Beijing to Xian, where centuries year-old city wall and legendary Terracotta Army await.
Sofitel Legend Peoples Grand Hotel Xian
Temple of Heaven
The thousands of lifelike Terracotta Warriors and Horses you
meet today were made over 2200 years ago with complicated process, as
the burial objects of the great Emperor Qinshihuang. When it was
excavated in 1970s, it was celebrated as the "Eighth Wonders of the
World". If you like, learn to make a mini terracotta solider yourself, and bring it home.
You will be embraced with hundreds of street foods when wandering Muslim Quarter,
which has been inhabited mainly by Muslim Hui people and known as
Xian’s most popular food center. Experience the spectacle of local
Muslim and visit the Great Mosque of Xian, with a unique façade that mixes Islamic and ancient Chinese style.
This evening, enjoy a banquet of dumpling as dinner before watching Tang Dynasty Music and Dance Show (optional).
Terracotta Warriors Museum
This morning visit Shaanxi History Museum to study
the past of Xian as a prosperous capital in the ancient times and the
starting point of the great Silk Road. One of the most famous museums
in China, it is a treasure house of Chinese civilization. The iconic
structure of Xian, Big Wild Goose Pagoda is within a
walking distance from Shaanxi History Museum. It was built over 1300
years ago during Tang Dynasty by Master Xuanzang to collect Sanskrit
scriptures, Buddha statues and Sarira.
You’ll have a special lunch experience today. Visit a local family and learn to make dumpling or Xian noodles – making a local flavor lunch yourself.
Admire Xian’s Ancient City Wall built in
1370, 13.74km long and 12m high. Standing on it, you can look back
Xian’s history, tradition and look into its modernity and development.
When the night falls, the wall will be illuminated by colored lights,
creating an extremely beautiful scene.
Big Wild Goose Pagoda
Fly into Lhasa, city of sunlight and the holy city for Tibetan
Buddhists. Located in the middle of Tibet Plateau, north of Himalayas,
Lhasa is 3650m (12,000 feet) above sea level. So the rest of the day is
to acclimate yourself to the high altitude, breathe the freshest air
and view the bluest sky and snow-capped mountains.
The St. Regis Lhasa Resort,
House Of Shambhala,
Intercontinental Lhasa Paradise
Drepung Monastery was built in 1416 by
a disciple of Tsongkhapa, founder of the Gelug Sect of Tibetan
Buddhism. The largest temple in Tibet, The grand architectures of
Drepung Monastery sprawl on the hill, resembling a mountain city.
Then visit a classical Tibetan garden – Norbulingka
– the summer palace for Dalai Lamas. Furthermore, it is a plateau
botanical garden, as boasting various exotic flowers and herbs
transplanted from Himalayas, mainland China and even foreign countries.
There’s chance you may attend a Buddhist debate at Sera Monastery. This tradition has been carried on for more than 600 hundreds. The tens of lamas dressed in scarlet robe are the debaters.
Monks debating at Sera Monastery
Walk across the Potala Square and visit the enormous Potala Palace
in person – the winter palace of the Dalai Lama for 1300 years. UNESCO
depicts it as a historic ensemble, since it incorporates perfectly the
palace, castle, and temple complex and possesses a myriad of Buddhist
and Tibetan culture and art treasures.
Later come at Jokhang Temple, the final
destination of the pilgrimage of Tibetan Buddhists. When Jokhang Temple
was built in the 7th Century, Lhasa was then honored as the holy city.
Admire the statue of Shakyamuni in twelve years old and find the best place to see the distant Potala Palace.
Then walk Barkhor Street, the commercial center of
Lhasa and a ritual walk path surrounding Jokhang Temple, thus known as
the sacred way. Here you can meet friendly local Tibetans and buy Tibet
souvenirs and specialties.
Today continue your Tibet journey getting to Yamdrok Lake
(about 2 hours’ drive from Lhasa). One of the three holy lakes in
Tibet, Yamdrok looks like a coral branch lying on this wild land, hence
it is also called Coral Lake in Tibetan language. Walk around
leisurely to take in breathtaking views of this emerald plateau lake
and the surrounding wilderness scenery. Drive back to your hotel along
the scenic roads.
Bid farewell to Tibet. Enjoy your last minute sightseeing, wandering
the old streets and corners, viewing the sublime scenery on the roof of
the world. Then fly for 2 hours from Lhasa to Chengdu, where you will
realize your dream to meet giant pandas in person.
Buddha Zen Hotel Chengdu,
Grand Hyatt Chengdu,
JW Marriott Hotel Chengdu
Chengdu Panda Breeding Research Center
Visit Chengdu Research Base of Giant Panda Breeding,
one of China’s and world's most important research institutes for the
protection and research of giant panda. At this panda base of Chengdu,
you will not only observe pandas, but also learn knowledge of giant
panda scientific research, history and panda culture.
Sichuan Cuisine Museum showcases the many
different types of cooking utensils and various categories of Sichuan
Cuisine, one of the eight Chinese cuisines. Try delicious snacks on the
museum’s food street. And if you wish, attend a cooking class, learning to cook authentic Chinese dishes.
Chengdu Panda Breeding Research Center
Apart from being home of panda and Sichuan cuisine,
Chengdu is also famous for the leisure lifestyle. This morning, your
guide will lead you to Renmin Park, the liveliest park
in Chengdu. Enjoy yourself a relaxing morning by watching locals
practice martial arts, dance, play chess and play mahjong – the most
popular way of entertainment among locals. Then find a quint teahouse to enjoy a cup of aroma local tea.
This afternoon, visit an ancient temple – Wenshu Monastery -
hidden in the bustling city center. It is an all-wood architecture
built to be embraced by an elegant garden. Wander the laidback Jinli Old Street with glimpse into the traditional commercial center of Chengdu.
Fly from Chengdu to Shanghai.
Grand Hyatt Shanghai,
Four Seasons Hotel Pudong Shanghai,
Grand Central Hotel Shanghai
A tea house in Chengdu
This morning, your guide will introduce you the cultural and artistic treasures on display in Shanghai Museum. Admire their perfect workmanship and learn about the history and stories. Later visit a typical Jiangnan garden – Yuyuan Garden,
a private mansion built in 1559, with more than 40
meticulously-preserved structures and a wide diversity of plants and
flowers. And discover the cultural root of Shanghai at the Town God Temple area, where you’ll see many beautiful traditional architecture complexes and Shanghai’s most popular food street.
Take a brisk walking tour of the Bund to
trace Shanghai’s colonial history back in 18th-19th Century. See over
50 colonial structures of different classical European styles. Then up Shanghai Tower, on the world’s highest observation deck, to snap photos of Pudong skyline.
After dinner, enjoy a magical acrobatics show that integrates tricks and dizzying effects (optional).
Here comes to the end of your 15 days China & Tibet tour. After you
are escorted to the airport and get through the security pass, wave
goodbye to your guide, and China Culture Tour service ends.
Shanghai Pudong area
- In-country transportationas noted in the itinerary.
- Admission fees and activity expenses as noted in the itinerary.
- Luxury or boutique hotels centrally located.
- Meals in local restaurants as noted in the itinerary with complimentary drinking water.
- Your own English-speaking guide service.
- Your own chauffeur and vehicle service.
- International transportation.
- Chinese tourist visa. (which enquired for most foreign passport holders)
- Travel and medical insurance.
- Meals, snacks, alcohol, etc. apart from those included in the itinerary.
- Excess baggage charges.
- Personal expenses.
- Sights, excursions and activities not included in the itinerary.
- Gratuities to guide and driver.