18 Days Beijing Xian Chengdu Guilin Yangtze and Shanghai Tour for Seniors

Comfort and travel don’t have to be oxymoronic. Forget the hurried, fixed group tour - this private, luxurious, relaxed-pace itinerary is perfectly devised for senior travelers to embrace China’s culture, history and nature on an epic scale.

Admire the breath-taking architectures of royal capital Beijing, soak up Silk Road culture in Xian, become an honorary panda keeper to be in close contact with world’s cutest creature, take in the dramatic dreamy karst landscape of Guilin, rest and relax in luxurious cruises exploring the Yangtze and Li River… - Everything is so wonderfully and flexibly planned that your tour in China seamlessly blends comfort and luxury with sightseeing and exploration.

Trip Highlights

  • Feel comfortable and relaxed cruising for 3 nights on Yangtze River
  • Join the panda keeper program
  • Experience Chinese water town’s slow life tempo
  • Private cookery lesson and calligraphy lesson in Yangshuo
  • Practicing Tai Chi in Temple of Heaven Park

Customizable Tour Itinerary

Board your international flight to Beijing, the capital and cultural center of China for centuries. After landing, take your time for disembarking from the plane and luggage claim. Be met and greeted by your private guide outside the airport customs. Then transfer to your luxurious hotel for check-in. Your guide will make all things are perfectly done until you can rest at hotel.

  • Hotels: Beijing Aman Summer Palace, Beijing Double Happiness Courtyard Hotel, Beijing Fairmont Hotel
Tian'anmen SquareTian'anmen Square

After a sound sleep, we prepare you a special gift to your health – taking a private Tai Chi boxing lesson right in front of Temple of Heaven. And see the locals, mostly the elderly, enjoying their morning hours in a healthy, active way by dancing and practicing Kung Fu. Temple of heaven itself is a truly outstanding architecture and was a sacred place for ancient Chinese monarchs to worship heaven.

Thereafter, navigate to the heart of Beijing, where the Forbidden City and Tiananmen Square are located. Walk on the Tiananmen Square to look up fluttering Chinese national flags, Tiananmen Rostrum and other historical sites surrounding.

Forbidden City was the place where the emperors lived and met their cabinet members, and a truly a restricted area for normal people. However, today you can have a personal access into the Forbidden City, also known as the Palace Museum. Admire the world’s biggest ancient wooden architecture and its countless treasures.

Watch a performance of Peking Opera or Shaolin Kung Fu with VIP seat (optional).

  • Meals: Breakfast, Lunch,
Temple of HeavenTemple of Heaven

The iconic landmark of China, the Great Wall is a big draw for all people. For senior travelers, we’ll arrange you the round way cableway on Mutianyu Great Wall. You may or may not walk for a while to take in the magnificent views – the walls stretch on the mountaintops as far as your eyes can reach. Learn from your expert guide the historical facts of the Great Wall.

Sit on a vintage rickshaw, an old means of transportation in the early 20th Century, to explore the winding hutong alleys. It is a secret corner in Beijing, full of historical buildings and cultural sites. The local Beijingers live their life in a traditional way, a rare scene in this cosmopolis.

Follow the traditional dinning etiquette to enjoy a Beijing Roasted Duck dinner (optional).

  • Meals: Breakfast, Lunch,
Hutong rickshawHutong rickshaw

If you choose to stay at Aman Summer Palace in Beijing, you can have a private access to Summer Palace to skip lines and have more time to discover the cultural delights and traditional Chinese garden art. Sit back on a dignified dragon boat to cruise Kunming Lake, surrounded by beautiful natural scenery and enjoying an incredible prospective of Summer Palace’s architectures.  

Fly or ride a bullet train from Beijing to Xian, a prosperous capital of ancient China and the eastern end of Silk Road.

  • Meals: Breakfast, Lunch,
  • Hotels: Sofitel Legend Peoples Grand Hotel Xian
Summer Palace with Dragon Boat CruiseSummer Palace with Dragon Boat Cruise

Begin your full day Xian tour with a trip to the archaeological site of the enormous Terracotta Army. The vividly carved warriors, officers, horses, chariots and weapons were the funerary objects of Emperor Qinshihuang and supposed to protect him after he died. Get to know Chinese manual skill of terracotta 2000 years ago.

Later, view Xian’s urban landscape, dotted with old structures such as Bell and Drum Towers, on the majestic Ancient City Wall. There’s no other place like Xian that retains its history on every modern aspect.

Enjoy the gastronomic scene and bustling atmosphere at the Muslim Quarter, the most famous food street in Xian. The local cuisine mixes both the Muslim Hui and traditional Han flavors.

  • Meals: Breakfast, Lunch,
Terracotta Warriors MuseumTerracotta Warriors Museum

This morning, visit Big Wild Goose Pagoda - a famous site on the Silk Road. As the earliest and largest existing quadrangle brick pagoda of Tang Dynasty, it is an important Buddhist heritage after Buddhism was introduced into China from India via the Silk Road.

Later, visit a local family in Xian to glimpse and even experience the real Chinese life. The host will ask for your help to make dumplings for today’s lunch. Dumpling is a most popular Chinese food that is especially suitable for the elderly.

Fly or ride a bullet train from Xian to Chengdu, famous as the hometown of giant pandas.

  • Meals: Breakfast, Lunch,
  • Hotels: Buddha Zen Hotel Chengdu, Chengde Imperial Mountain Resort, Grand Hyatt Chengdu
Big Goose PagodaBig Goose Pagoda

One of the most adorable animals on Earth, giant panda is a national treasure of China. To become a qualified panda keeper, you need to prepare them the delicious foods, feed them, and also clean their rooms. Generally the work is easy, without much energy consumed, and offers a rare opportunity to be close to pandas and get to know them, their history, habit, hobbies…

After a working day to have fun with giant pandas, you’ll be driven back to your Chengdu hotel to rest and enjoy a full pleasant sleep.

Kind reminder: the panda keeper program is not available for the seniors older than 65.

  • Meals: Breakfast, Lunch,
Chengdu Panda Breeding Research CenterChengdu Panda Breeding Research Center

Enjoy a relaxing morning at Chengdu People’s Park. Local people gather here to drink tea, play mahjong and dance in groups. There’s also chance you can see some local traditions, e.g. ear cleaning service and street barber’s shop. Then sip tea at a quaint teahouse, soaking up profound tea culture of Chengdu.

Afterwards, have a brisk stroll along Wide and Narrow Alley, the Chengdu style hutongs dating to 18th Century and lined with traditional courtyards of black tiles and grey brick walls. And have a visit of Wenshu Monastery initially built in the 7th Century. It is the best preserved Buddhist temple in Chengdu, blending delicate, elegant garden art.

Board your flight to Guilin, known as the most beautiful place to visit in China.

  • Meals: Breakfast, Lunch,
  • Hotels: Jolie Vue Boutique Hotel Guilin, Guilin Shangri La Hotel, Sheraton Guilin
Heming tea house in ChengduHeming tea house in Chengdu

Today, free at leisure at your hotel and explore the city center on your own pace.

Alternatively, take a trip to Longji Rice Terraces, one of the largest and most beautiful of its kind in China. The local mountain tribes have worked for hundreds of years to create the seemingly endless terraced fields over the mountain tops. You need to walk up for a while to get to the viewing platform where you can take in the best views.

Also visit the Longji Ancient Zhuang Village, a traditional hamlet nestled in the terraced fields and inhabited by Zhuang tribes. Appreciate their wooden stilted houses and see people dressed in traditional clothes.

  • Meals: Breakfast, Lunch,
Longji rice terracesLongji rice terraces

This morning, board your luxury river ship and set sail on Li River. Nominated as one of World's 15 best rivers for travelers by CNN, Li River is the essence of UNESCO-listed South China Karst. Along the way, view dramatic karst peaks, the distant villages, and find the sight on RMB twenty Yuan note.

Join the locals to walk through the West Street, the town center of Yangshuo from the past till the date. It is especially favored by international travelers, thus named “Foreigners’ Street”.

Thereafter, sit back on your private vehicle to tour the countryside of Yangshuo. Soak in the amazingly beautiful surroundings of limestone hills, green vegetation, twisting rivers, vast farmlands stretching to ancient villages… And visit a local family to get to know China’s village life.

Enjoy Impression Liu Sanjie night show, performed in the outdoor with real landscape as the backgrop (optional).

  • Meals: Breakfast, Lunch,
  • Hotels: Alila Yangshuo, Yangshuo Mountain Retreat, Yangshuo Banyan Tree Hotel
Li River cruiseLi River cruise

Live a life like locals, buying fresh seasonal food materials at the traditional wet market. Then take a private Chinese cooking class, learning from a teacher to cook the most popular Chinese foods to eat in Yangshuo. Chinese Cuisine is one of the top cuisines in the world, with a long history, and pays special attention to both the food’s nutrients and taste.

Delve deep into traditional Chinese art by taking a calligraphy class. Learn and practice using brush and inkstick and the way to apply on paper. Appreciate the artistic beauty of Chinese characters and write them down yourself. Chinese calligraphy requires patience and concentration and is regarded as a rewarding hobby for the elderly.

  • Meals: Breakfast, Lunch,
Yangshuo Cookery LessonYangshuo Cookery Lesson

Leave Yangshuo, and drive back to Guilin. Before flying to Chongqing, the starting place of your Yangtze cruise, explore the magic Reed Flute Cave at the hallway of a limestone mountain. The stalactites and stalactitums grow wild in the cave and have formed numerous diverse fantastic configurations – flowers, lions, pillars, waterfalls, towers… For senior travelers, you may take a sedan chair for going up and down the mountain and sightseeing if you don’t walk much.

Upon arrival in Chongqing, pick up and transfer to Chaotianmen Pier. Set sail in the soft darkness.

  • Meals: Breakfast, Lunch,
Reed Flute CaveReed Flute Cave

If you prefer, spend the early morning as an energetic Chinese senior do – practicing Tai Chi moves in the breeze and bask in the first soft sunlight. Join a local-expert-led shore excursion to Shibaozhai Pagoda standing majestically on the bank of Yangtze. One of the few all-wood architectures of ancient China, the pagoda is hailed as an amazingly strange building in the world.

At tonight’s welcome party, meet the captain and crew. Enjoy the delicious dinner and a choreographed performance.

  • Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner,
Shibaozhai PagodaShibaozhai Pagoda

Today, the ship will sail through the Three Gorge landscape, which incorporates Qutang Gorge, Wu Gorge and Xiling Gorge and is renowned for the majestic views of mountains and steep cliff. Relax at the deck, breathing the fresh air and enjoying the scenery of water and greenery. Then take a small boat to slide through Goddess Stream (Shennv Stream) – a hidden gem along the Yangtze, with access to the tomb of hanging coffins and cliff coffins, and local people’s humble village.

Attend the Captain’s Farewell Party. Get together with the others in a relaxed, fun, yet refined atmosphere.

  • Meals: Breakfast, Lunch,
Shennv StreamShennv Stream

After breakfast, check out, and disembark in Yichang this morning. You will be driven to the site of Three Gorge Dam, along with all the other passengers. The dam is a multipurpose hydraulic project, being the biggest and most efficiency of its kind in the world, and creating a spectacular scene on the Yangtze River.

Before flying to Shanghai, have a visit of Sanyou Cave, a famous cultural site in Yichang, with ancient pavilions and military fort. Many ancient literati came here successively and left hundreds of cliff inscriptions and poems.

  • Meals: Breakfast, Lunch,
  • Hotels: Four Seasons Hotel Pudong Shanghai, Grand Hyatt Shanghai, Grand Central Hotel Shanghai
Yangtze River CruiseYangtze River Cruise

No one fails to fall in love with Shanghai, a city mixing the tradition with future. Join the locals to enjoy life in Fuxing Park, an elegant Chinese-French style garden. The family with kids have fun with recreation facilities, couples lie on the grass to enjoy sunshine, the elderly dance and practice Tai Chi… 

Then visit an outstanding works of classical Chinese garden -- Yu Garden was built in 1559 by using the ingenious construction techniques. Even today, it is the best garden in Shanghai. After that, ramble in the Yuyuan Bazaar, or known as Shanghai’s “food paradise”, where the locals and tourists gather together on the old streets to feast on street foods and buy specialty souvenirs.

Later ascend the observation deck of Shanghai World Financial Center, one of the tallest buildings in Lujiazui, to view the rising skyscrapers. Then ramble on the Bund along Huangpu River. There are over 50 colonial buildings of different classical Western architectural styles, making the Bund a historical landmark in Shanghai.

  • Meals: Breakfast, Lunch,
Shanghai Pudong areaShanghai Pudong area

Today, transfer from Shanghai to Tongli to soak up the picturesque views of thousand year-old ancient town, canals, Ming & Qing dwellings, gardens, wetlands… Experience a peaceful, slow-paced life as the locals do in Tongli and ride a boat to cruise the lakes and bridges. Walk leisurely on the Ming Qing Street lined with traditional snack and specialty shops and visit UNESCO-listed Tuisi Garden.

Tonight, enjoy VIP seating watching the performance of Shanghai acrobatics (optional).

  • Meals: Breakfast, Lunch,
Tongli Water Town by BoatTongli Water Town by Boat

Pick up, and transfer from hotel to airport. Your guide will assist you to go through the check-in procedures and walk you to the security Checkpoint. Board your flight back home. China Culture Tour service ends.

  • Meals: Breakfast,
Shanghai Pudong areaShanghai Pudong area

Price Includes

  • 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.

Price Excludes

  • 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.


This tour is tailor-made and we can tailor to meet your reqeusts. Your personal travel consultant will contact you within 24 working hours!


CHINA OCTOBER - NOVEMBER 2019 We researched several companies and studied reviews on Trip Adviser before contacting who did a very China Culture Tour with an initial query. Right from the outset Grace who owns the company was excellent. She emailed detailed with pictures information and a suggested…read more details

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