- See the most important highlights of China under 3 weeks
- Cruise down the Yulong River on these Chinese style Gondolas – Bamboo Rafts
- See the Pandas at the world’s main, and biggest, Giant Panda Breeding & Research Center
- Get amazed by the world’s largest stone Buddha
- Witness sunrise on The Great Wall
- Test your bargaining skills in the Fake Goods Market
- A combination of Western and Chinese English-speaking Adventure Leaders
- Free mandarin tuition for beginners
- Accommodation in hostels with Wifi
- All train, boat and bus tickets
- Entry, transport and Adventures Leaders to some of China’s unmissable attractions, such as the Terracotta Warriors, camping on the Great Wall, and bamboo rafting down the Li River
- All taxes and charges
Day 1: Shanghai
- Kickstart you Shanghai to Shanghai backpacking tour with a meeting on the rooftop bar of the Phoenix Hostel at 1:30 pm. Leave your luggage at the hostel if necessary.
- Transfer to Shanghai South Station to board a night train to Guilin.
- One guide will put you on the train and another will collect you in Guilin.
Day 2-5: Yangshuo
- Try your hand at cooking up some traditional Chinese foods at this friendly and practical local cuisine institute
- Group lunch
- Unmissable Activity: Cruise down the Yulong River on these Chinese style Gondolas – Bamboo Rafts! Bikes included riding around! (please make sure you wear a helmet at all times when you are riding your bike!)
- Optional: Cormorant Fishing
- Optional: Bike Ride to Moon Hill and a cave complex including mudbaths and hot springs
- Optional: Enjoy Deep Water soloing or Rock- Climbing, both highly recommended!
- Optional: Experience Chinese traditional therapies such as Hot Cupping
- Optional: Enjoy kayaking on the Li River (must be back by 13.00!)
- Optional: A true treat, experience what life is like on a farm by visiting your Adventure Leader’s home village
- Board minibus to North Bus Station and then board your bus to Guilin
- Depart Yangshuo on a bullet train to Chengdu, arriving in the evening. Take a metro to your hostel and meet your new Adventure Leader!
Day 6-8: Chengdu
- Optional: Massage from blind Masseuse
- Mandarin Lesson 1: Have a Mandarin Lesson with your Adventure Leader
- Optional: Watch a traditional Sichuan opera performance
- Unmissable Activity: Gather up to go see the Pandas at the world’s main, and biggest, Giant Panda Breeding & Research Center.
- Optional: Leave to Leshan to see the world’s largest stone Buddha.
- Optional: Wander Jinli street and the Tibetan districts independently. (Chengdu is right next to Tibet, or Xizang in Mandarin, so there is a large ethnic community here)
- Optional: Sample the famous Sichuan Hot Pot if you dare! (Legendary Spice!)
- Have a night out in Chengdu
- Optional: Visit Wenshu Monastery, Sichuan Province Museum, People’s Park and a traditional Tea House
- Take bus or metro to Chengdu North Railway Station
- Say goodbye to your Adventure Leader and board your train to Xian
Day 9-10: Xi'an
- Arrive in Xi’an and meet your next Adventure Leader
- Check-in to your hostel
- Optional: Explore the Bell Drum Towers, Muslim Quarter and Great Mosque to learn about the history of the Silk Road, towers, mosque and some local legends.
- Enjoy a dinner of local street foods at the Muslim Quarter. Relax after dinner by visiting the local Silk Road market nearby.
- Optional: Volunteer at the Star Sun Home
- Un-missable Attraction – Terracotta Warriors – Free
- Optional: Bike Ride on Ming Dynasty City Walls. Please make sure you wear a helmet!
Day 11-12: Shaolin
- Board a private minivan than a bus to DengFeng, the closest village to the Shaolin Temple.
- Arrive in DengFeng
- Optional: Kung fu lesson & show at a local children’s home run by Shaolin Temple where the monks teach these children to be kung fu masters. All proceeds go directly to the Children’s Home.
- Dinner in the Guesthouse
- Mandarin lesson: Have your second Mandarin lesson
- Optional: Visit the flagship of Kung Fu, The Shaolin Temple
- Optional: Hike to Dharma Cave, a spiritual spot for Buddhist pilgrims, and be rewarded by beautiful views of both the shrines/temples in the area and the views of the area
- Have a late lunch at the guesthouse then pack and check out
- Depart to Zhengzhou to board your train to Beijing
- Arrive at the train station and have some food before your train leaves
Day 13-16: Beijing
- Arrive in Beijing and meet your next Adventure Leader. Transfer by minibus to the hostel. You won’t be staying the night here, so you won’t be able to get into rooms, but can use the shower rooms, and common areas to relax before heading to the Wall in the afternoon
- Mandarin lesson: Have your 3rd Mandarin Lesson
- It’s time for the Mandarin Challenge! Use your freshly learned Mandarin to complete challenges around Beijing’s ancient streets and alleyways. The winning team earns a prize
- A mandatory meal at a local farm to obtain permission to access the locals only sections of the unrestored Great Wall
- Unmissable Attraction – Hike on totally unrestored sections of the Great Wall before setting up camp on a deserted section of the wall to watch the sunset on one of the Wonders of the World (Please note, due to cold weather before the end of April and after September, we stay in a guest house near the Wall instead of camping but still return to the Wall to watch the sunrise in the morning)
- Unmissable Attraction – Sunrise on the Wall
- Return to Beijing
- Optional: Visit the Olympic Bird’s Nest stadium designed by one of the most controversial figures in modern China
- Optional: A stunning Chinese acrobatics performance performed by young talents recruited from around China
- Enjoyed exclusively by royalty in ancient times, taste Beijing’s signature dish Peking Roast Duck
- Optional: Take a walk through the globally recognized, Tiananmen Square
- Optional: Visit the Forbidden City. The largest palatial complex in the world, the grounds boast 980 buildings and a history of housing 24 different Chinese royalty
- Optional: Go to Jingshan Park for a bird’s eye view of the three palaces: Forbidden City, Temple of Heaven, Summer Palace and Tiananmen Square.
- Test your bargaining skills in the Fake Goods Market!
- Push your taste buds to the limit at the Wangfujing night market where you can sample most foods you’ve never tried, like scorpion, dog, cat, bugs and more
- Optional: Go to the Temple of Heaven, the largest complex dedicated to heaven worship in the world and where ancient sacrifices were made to bring bountiful harvests
- Board night train to Hangzhou
Day 17-18: Hangzhou & Moganshan
- After breakfast the group will take a minivan from Hangzhou railway station to Moganshan, famed for its bamboo forests
- Optional: Hike to Moganshan Peak
- Have breakfast then check-out, but you can leave your bags at the hostel
- Unmissable Activity: Bike Trek
- Lunch at the hostel
- Travel to Hangzhou East Train Station to take your bullet train to Shanghai
- Arrive in Shanghai and transfer via metro to your hostel for 20:00
- Optional: Set off for the Shanghai Drunken Dragon Pub Crawl – a big favourite with our fun-loving travellers!
Starts: Shanghai, China, Phoenix Hostel
A visa is required for China, so once you’ve made your booking with us, we will send you detailed instructions on applying for your visa, a visa invitation letter and a detailed itinerary, and a number of other items in your booking packet.
You will need at least six months validity on your passport to get your visa. If this means getting a new passport then we will need to have a copy of your most recent passport as well as the one you booked with. You will need to follow the instructions of your countries embassy on applying for your visa and we suggest allowing two weeks for this to be processed. You should apply for your visa within three months of your travel start date. For more information, prior to booking, you can check the China Visa Application Service Center or the website of your local Chinese consulate. You can also find information regarding visas for Macau and Hong Kong here.
We require all our customers to have backpackers travel insurance when coming on the trip. Please bring details of your travel insurance along with you. In the event of an accident, we may need to contact your insurance company on your behalf, so we will need the insurance company’s name and phone number and your policy number.