Day 1: Arrival in Beijing; Sightseeing “Temple of Heaven”.
Our team representatives will receive you at the airport with a warm welcome, and drive you to your luxurious hotel. After little bit of rest from your long flight, we gather up to give you a brief orientation on the program ahead of us. In the afternoon, we begin our journey without wasting any time. First thing will be a visit to the famous Temple of Heaven.
About Beijing City: Beijing, the capital of the People's Republic of China, is located in northern China and its long and illustrious history started some 500,000 years ago. It is here that the ancestors of modern Homo sapiens, Peking men, lived in caves. Records show that Beijing has been an inhabited city for more than three thousand years and has endured many different invasions by warlords, foreign powers, and devastating fires. It has succumbed to the rise and the fall of powerful imperial dynasties, and has emerged each time as a strong and vibrant city. The numerous royal buildings with long history endows Beijing with incomparable charm and historic significance. The city boasts the biggest central square in the world known as Tiananmen Square, and the largest and best-preserved imperial palace complexes in Forbidden City. Nighttime in Beijing offers many traditional performances such as the ‘Beijing Opera’, acrobatics and martial arts to modern ones including concerts, ballroom dancing, pubs and clubs. Each and every one has its individual enchantment for the tourist. No description of the capital city is complete without mention of the friendly people, who throng the streets with smiling faces and a warm welcome.
Temple of Heaven: It is a wonderful temple in Beijing, built in 1420 AD during the Ming Dynasty to offer sacrifice to Heaven. It is enclosed by a long wall, whose north part is semi-circular symbolizing heaven and the south part is square like the earth. The design shows that the heaven is high over the earth, reflecting ancient Chinese thought of "The heaven is round and the earth is square". The most magnificent buildings are The Circular Mound Altar, Imperial Vault of Heaven, and Hall of Prayer for Good Harvest. Also, there are some additional buildings like Three Echo Stones and Echo Wall. Almost all of the buildings are connected by a wide bridge called Vermilion Steps Bridge, also known as the ‘Sacred Way’.
Day 2 Beijing Sightseeing Tour.
Today, it will be full day of sightseeing of some prominent venues of Beijing.
The Great Wall of China at Badaling: The Great Wall is a symbol of Chinese civilization, and one of the Seven Wonders of the World. Badaling Great Wall, the most representative part of the whole Great Wall, has been promoted as a key national cultural relic, and was enlisted in the World Cultural Heritage by UNESCO in 1981. Badaling Great Wall is the most well-preserved section of the Great Wall, and with an average altitude of over 1,000 meters, this section of the Great Wall is like a strong dragon winding its way along the mountain ranges. The mountain slope is very steep and the roads are tortuous. The structure of the wall consists of huge bar-stones and bricks. The inside of the wall has been formed by tampering earth and small stones making the wall very firm and strong. Badaling Great Wall symbolizes the hardship and bitterness that Chinese people have endured in the past 2000 years.
The Ming Tombs: 50 kilometers northwest from Beijing City lies the Ming Tombs - the general name given to the mausoleums of 13 emperors of the Ming Dynasty (1368 - 1644). The mausoleums have been perfectly preserved, as has the necropolis of each of the many emperors. Because of its long history, palatial and integrated architecture, the site has a high cultural and historic value. The layout and arrangement of all thirteen mausoleums are very similar but vary in size as well as in the complexity of their structures. This is an amazing site for many reasons. First, it is outside Beijing, so you have a chance to escape the city and see a bit of the countryside. Second, it is relatively near the Great Wall, so you can visit both in one day. Third, the tomb itself is an eye opener - This is the burial site of 13 out of 17 emperors of the Ming Dynasty. There are just two tombs which have been excavated and open to the public - Dingling and Changling tomb.
Day 3: Beijing Sightseeing.
Tiananmen Square: Located at the center of Beijing City, The Tiananmen Square is the largest square in the world with an area of 440,000 square meters. Here you could visit Tiananmen Tower, Monument to the People's Heroes, The Great Hall of the People, Mao Zedong Memorial Hall and see the national flag raising ceremony. Thousands of people come to the Square every day. It is the must place to visit in Beijing City. The square used to be the front door of the Forbidden City, and was used in the past as the venue to host a big ceremony to the common people. Until 1911, when the last feudal kingdom was over, no one could enter the Tiananmen Tower except for the royal family and aristocrats. The granite Monument to the People's Heroes is just at the center of the Tiananmen Square. Built in 1952, it is the largest monument in China's history. 'The People's Heroes are Immortal' written by Chairman Mao is engraved on the monument. Eight unusually large relief sculptures show to the people the development of Chinese modern history. Two rows of white marble railings enclose the monument in its beauty.
Forbidden City: Forbidden City, also known as the Palace Museum, shares the honor of being amongst one of the five world’s famous palaces such as Palace of Versailles of France, Buckingham Palace of England, the White House of US, and the Kremlin of Russia. The palace was listed as a World Cultural Heritage Building in 1987. It has been the imperial palace where twenty-four emperors ascended the throne and exercised their strong power to the nation. The incomparable palace occupies an area of 720,000 square meters (177.9 acres) and has approximately 8,700 rooms. With roofs covered with golden glazed tile, walls painted red with grey-white bases, the rectangular palace appears extremely luxurious and grandiose. Spectacular halls in it are neatly arranged in bilateral symmetry along a central axis that conforms to the axis of Beijing City.
Day 4: Beijing - Xian (by Night Train); Sightseeing at Beijing.
Before we embark upon the train to Xian city in the night, we continue our sightseeing to the following locations.
Summer Palace: It is the largest and best-preserved imperial garden in China. Its chinese name, Yi He Yuan, translates as 'Garden of Nurtured Harmony' or 'Garden for Maintaining Health and Harmony’. Originally called 'Qingyi Garden' (Garden of Clear Ripples), it consist of the Court Area - where Empresses and Emperor met officials and conducted state affairs, Hall of Benevolence and Longevity - which was served as the office of the Emperor, Hall of Jade Ripples - where Emperor Guangxu lived, Hall of Joyful Longevity – where Emperor Cixi's resided, the Garden of Virtue and Harmony - where Emoperor Cixi was entertained, Yiyun House - where once lived the Empress Longyu, and Long Gallery - which measures the longest in Chinese gardens.
Day 5: Xian Sightseeing Tour.
Immediately after reaching Xian, we accommodate ourselves in our hotel, and then proceed with our another full day of sightseeing of Xian such Terra Cotta Warriors, The Large Wild Goose Pagoda, The Xi'an City Wall, Forest of Steles.
About Xi'an City: An old saying in China tells the unique position of this legendary city: "If you want to see China of 100 years ago, visit Shanghai; China of 500 years ago, Beijing; China of 2000 years ago, then Xi'an". At the cradle of Chinese culture, the city was capital to the first dynasty of China and many of its successors. Xian, once known as Changan is the political, economic, cultural, and transportation center of Shaanxi Province, is the largest city in north-west China. It had served as the nation's capital for more than 1000 years. The Terra-cotta Warriors and Horse of Xi'an of this city are the greatest archeological finds of this century. The other landmark like Big Wild Goose Pagoda reflects China's long history. What makes Xian standing out from other cities is due to its historically significant sites, rich cultural relics, and beautiful scenic spots. Xian is also the starting point of the famous Silk Road to the West.
Terra Cotta Warriors: Arguably one of China's most famous and popular tourist sites, the Terracotta warriors are among the top archaeological excavations of the 20th Century. The warriors have made Xian the big tourist destination, and the wealth in this city owes much to their discovery. This incredible collection of 6,000 men and their horses was actually discovered by a group of peasants in 1974, when they happen to be digging for a well. In a bizarre twist, the man who supposedly discovered them now sits in a hall at the site signing postcards of the stone army. The warriors are over 2000 years old and were originally constructed to protect the tomb of the Emperor Qin Shi Huang. The Warriors are now housed in a huge airplane hangar and despite their fame and the throngs of tourists visiting the site, they are still incredibly impressive. These life size warriors stand on guard as if preparing for battle. Historians believe that these magnificent men were originally painted. The Large Wild Goose .
Pagoda: It is located within the premises of the Temple of Great Maternal Grace. This magnificent pagoda is four kilometers south of Xi'an and many regard it as a symbol of the city. The pagoda, built in 652 A.D, is a square pyramid and stands at 60 meters high and seven stories tall. Legend has it that the Temple was built by Emperor Tang Gaozong to honor his mother Empress Wende. The Temple is also said to have been built to house and protect Buddhist scriptures collected in India by the Chinese monk Xuan Zang. There are fantastic views of the streets below from the top of the pagoda of the grid. It is tradition to throw coins from the windows of the pagoda in the hope that this will bring good luck.
The Xi'an City Wall: It is not only the most complete city wall that has survived in China, but it's also one of the largest and most complete ancient defense military systems in the world. The city walls were actually built on the fortifications of the Tang Forbidden City. The military defense facilities here including the city wall, city moat, drawbridges, watchtowers, corner towers, parapet walls and gate towers once made up a complete city defense system. Many sections have since been destroyed and the city walls are incomplete.
Forest of Steles: Steles are huge stone slabs which depict important calligraphic writing, often dating back to ancient times. They are held in high regard in China and many people study the artistry of these mammoth pieces. The Forest of Steles is located in the Confucian Temple in Xi'an, and was first built to preserve the Thirteen Classics of Filial Piety which were engraved during the Tang Dynasty. A significant collection of Steles was gathered by the Qing dynasty and the building became known as the Forest of Steles.
Day 6: Xian Sightseeing Tour.
Today, we continue on with our sightseeing for another full day. We will be visiting Famen Temple, Yuquan Yuan (Jade Spring Temple), The Banpo Museum, Mausoleum of the First Qin Emperor, and Mt. Huashan.
Famen Temple: In China, many temples house treasures and artifacts, but the sheer quantity and quality of treasures in the Famen Temple is rare. Situated in Famen Town of Fufeng County, Famen Temple is renowned for storing the veritable Finger Bone of the Shakyamuni Buddha. The Temple was established in the Eastern Han Dynasty (25--220), for introducing and spreading Buddhism. The most representative structures in the temple are the Famen Temple Pagoda and Famen Temple Museum. At the center of the temple is the 13-tiered octagonal pagoda under which is believed to have been buried a finger bone of Shakyamuni Buddha. Many royal treasures and jewellery were also found here making it the biggest Buddhist underground palace so far discovered. Tracing back to a most flourishing time in Chinese history, formerly Famen Temple was the royal temple and Emperors of Sui and Tang dynasty believed that enshrining and worshiping the bone of Shakyamuni Buddha would bring riches and peace to the land and its people. So an offering of treasure to the finger bone was made.
Yuquan Yuan (Jade Spring Temple): Usually tourists climb up the mountain assisted by the iron chains along the way and start their tour from Yuquan Yuan (Jade Spring Temple), one of the main Taoist temples in China located at the foot of Mt. Huashan. It has the architectural style of the classical gardens in south China. There is a pond in the center and several pavilions around it. Walking through the Wuyou Pavilion, the Long Corridor of Seventy-two Windows comes into view followed by big rock called Huixin Rock. It is said that Huixin Rock is a reminder for those who wish to stop their tour at this point. Beside the rock are the precipitous 370 rock steps called Qianchi Zhuang considered to be the primary breath-taking path of Mt. Huashan. When climbing, only a gleam of sky above can be seen, making climbers feel as if they were at the bottom of a well.
The Banpo Museum: As the first museum of the prehistoric site, it was built at the base of the excavations of the Banpo site, which is a typical Neolithic matriarchal community of the Yangshao Culture dating back about 6,000 years. At that time, the Banpo people used tools made primarily of wood and stone. Women, the crucial labor force, were responsible for making pottery, spinning, and raising the family, while men fished. The exhibition area of Banpo Museum is divided into two Halls - Exhibition Hall and a Site Hall. The showpieces in this two halls are primarily the domestic and production tools used for production by the primitive Banpo people such as axes, chisels, sickles, and stone and pottery knives. In addition, artwork and adornments here reflect the social life, culture, art and inventions of the period.
Mausoleum of the First Qin Emperor: The tomb of Qin Shi Huang is located in the eastern suburbs of Lintong County, almost 35 kilometers (22 miles) east of Xian, overlooking the Wei River towards north. The lay of the land from Lishan to Mount Hua is shaped dragon-like according to traditional Chinese geomancy. The imperial tomb is at the eye of the dragon.
Mt. Huashan: Situated in Huayin City, 120 kilometers (about 75 miles) east from Xi'an City, Mt. Huashan is known as 'The Number One Precipitous Mountain under Heaven'. It is one of the five sacred mountains in China. From a distance the five peaks seem to form the shape of a 'flower' (hua in Chinese), hence the name 'Huashan'. It is famous for its natural vistas of steep and narrow paths, precipitous crags, and a high mountain range. It is home to several influential Taoist temples where emperors of past dynasties made pilgrimages.
Day 7: Fly from Xian – Chongqing (Flight Duration: 1-1.30 hrs).
We take a hour long flight from to Xian to Chongqing city. After arriving at the city, we accommodate ourselves in the finest hotel of the city, and immediately proceed with our sightseeing program of following venues.
About Chongqing City: Located in southwestern China on the upper reaches of the Changjiang (Yangtze) River, Chongqing Municipality is the largest industrial and commercial center in the southwest of China. Chongqing has been regarded as a "mountain city" because of its buildings on hillsides and mountains surrounding the city. The climate in Chongqing is often cloudy and misty. As a result, it is also called "the fog city". Chongqing is the best point to start a boat excursion and tour the world-famous Three Gorges of the Changjiang River.
Chongqing Zoo: It is situated in the western suburb of Chongqing with undulating green hills, wriggling ravines, and clear waters. It is the largest zoological garden in southwest-China, and has become the most important sites for protection of rare birds and animals. It houses .over 1,000 birds and animals of 170 species including the pandas, goldfish, birds, water animals, buffalos, elephants, lions, tigers, camels and monkeys.
Chongqing Museum: It is located on the top of the Loquat Hill, and has over 40 exhibiting halls with about 100,000 pieces of relics spanning over 3000 years of history. Among these relics, relics of Ba-Shu culture, terra-cotta and sculpture of the Han dynasty, and pottery and porcelain are most famous.
Ci Qi Kou Village: The ancient village of Ci Qi Kou is situated on the bank of the Jia Ling River, not far from its confluence with the mighty river Yangtze. The many houses in Ci Qi Kou date from the Ming and Qing Dynasties. Much of the two and three storey construction is of bamboo and timber. Blue bricks and pillars set off the snow-white-walls, which contrasts with vermilion doors and lattice windows. The most famous in this village are the tea bars, the artists' studios and the Shu Embroidery workshops.
Day 8: Chongqing – Fengdu by Cruise ship.
Today, after breakfast, we embark on cruise ship towards Fengdu city, where we undertake sightseeing of the following venues.
Ghost City: Located on the Ming Mountain on the northern bank of the Yangtze River, Fengdu County is known to most Chinese as the 'Ghost City.' Having nearly two thousand years of history, the Ghost City combines the cultures of Confucianism, Taoism and Buddhism with the mystique of ghosts. Many famous literary works like Journey to the West, Apotheosis of Heroes and Strange Tales of a Lonely Studio contain vivid references to Fengdu. During the Tang Dynasty, a stupendous temple was erected on Ming Mountain depicting life in hell. It displays demonic images and torture devices and reflects the notion that good people will be treated well in the afterlife and that bad people will be punished by going to hell. In the Chinese vision of the afterlife, the dead (or ghosts) must undergo three major tests to enter the netherworld. These tests are taken at three locations - Nothing-To-Be-Done-Bridge, Ghost Torturing Pass, and the Tianzi (son of heaven) Palace. These three locations are among many attractions in the Ghost City.
Snow Jade Cave: Located about eight miles from the new county of Fengdu, the Snow Jade Cave is rated as China's most beautiful cave by Chinese National Geography. Discovered in the mid 90's, the cave is over 1,022 miles long. At present, it is the youngest cave discovered in China. Because of its uniqueness and beauty, it has become a popular scenic spot along the Yangtze River as well as serving as a research site for the study of caves. The wonders within the cave will be - The Coral Tower (the largest of its kind in the world), the glittering and transparent King Stone Flag at 26 feet high (the world's tallest and thinnest stone flag), and the stone shield at 13 feet high (also known as the Snowy Jade Penguin). The place is very amusing and source of marvel and wonder for many visitors and scholars.
Day 9: Badong - Xiling Gorge – Sandouping- Yichang City by River Cruise.
We embark on a Yangtze river cruise until reaching at Yichang city. Upon reaching the city, we immediately proceed further with our sightseeing programAbout Yichang City: It is a city with a wonderful geographic location and natural resources. Here you will find grand mountains, historical relics, and water conservancy projects fused with modern architecture, making it an ideal place for holidays and leisure. The Yangtze River runs through the city of Yichang, creating many natural reserves along its path. This valuable resource has made Yichang a valuable territory, and for this reason it became a place contested by all strategists in the history. Yichang was a famous battlefield throughout the Three Kingdoms Period (220-280). It is also the birth place of many historical celebrities, such as Qu Yuan and Wang Zhaojun. Yangtze River is the longest river in China and the Three Gorges is the most magnificent gorges of the river and was listed as one of the best natural landscapes of China.
Chinese Sturgeon Museum: This museum was set up in 1993 by the Chinese Sturgeon Research Institute. This institute aims to preserve the rare species of Chinese sturgeon that includes 27 species of sturgeon that still exist in the world. Chinese sturgeon, also known as Green Sturgeon, is a kind of migration fish. Having lived on the earth for 140 million years, the Chinese sturgeon is one of the oldest vertebrate lying between chondrichthian and bony fish. In this case, Chinese sturgeon is called the 'living fossil', and is regarded as the king of the freshwater fish. It is the largest one and lives the longest.
Day 10: Fly from Yichang – Shanghai (Flight duration: 1.5-2 hours).
We take a morning flight from Yichang to Shanghai. Upon reaching the city, we accommodate ourselves in a finest hotel of Shanghai, and immediately proceed with our sightseeing program of following venues.
About Shanghai City: For anyone who is interested in the history of modern China, Shanghai serves as an ideal starting point. Regarded as the 'Oriental Pearl', the city has a unique and important place in modern China and its rich heritage is worthy of exploration. Shanghai is the largest city in China and one of the five super cities of the world. Shanghai is also one of ten world's largest seaports. Shanghai, a municipality directly under the Central Government, is one of the largest commercial cities and economic center of China. It's a coastal opening city as well as a famous historic and cultural one. It is endowed with good geographical and natural conditions, and boasts a long history of development of economy and technology of the nation. As the biggest industrial centre in China, Shanghai ranks first in the value of its industrial production as compared with other Chinese cities.
Yuyuan Garden: Yuyuan is the most famous garden in Shanghai. It is called "Yuyuan" - because "yu" in Chinese means "peace and health"-- a place of peace and comfort in the heart of busy Shanghai. It can date back to the Ming Dynasty. Now a hot tourist destination, Yuyuan Garden is the largest of Shanghai's ancient gardens with Ming and Qing architectural styles. The garden has six areas, each with its own style. The Grand Rockery, in the center of the Garden, is the most renowned sight. Near the garden, there is the City God Temple of Shanghai.
Acrobatic Show: An acrobatic show has become one of the most popular evening entertainments for tourists in Shanghai. You can enjoy gravity-defying contortionism, juggling, uni-cycling, chair-stacking, and plate-spinning acts performed in the stages. The other famous acrobatic troupe is ‘Shangahi Circus World’, which is considered as one of the best. Unique in architectural shape and with a golden dome-like roof, it is another landmark building of Shanghai. It has the acrobatic field as the main building, rehearsal auxiliary building, animal room and commercial cultural building. Day 11: Shanghai Sightseeing.
Today, we dedicate our day to sightseeing of Shanghai, and will be visiting following prominent sites of the city.
Day 11: Shanghai city sightseeing.
Jade Buddha Temple: It is the most famous Buddhist temple in Shanghai. It is an active temple with over 70 monks, and it houses a 1.9-metre-tall jade statue of Buddha carved out of a single piece of jade, whose color is lustrously and spotlessly white. Besides that rare treasure in the world, there is another jade Buddha statue in a reclined position. Both the ‘Sitting Buddha’ and the ‘Recumbent Buddha’ are carved with whole white jade. The crystal-clear white jade makes both Buddha more vivid and bright. The Jade Buddha Temple is a nice site to go whether you are a Buddhist or not, because of the peaceful and super-natural ambience around this temple is very serene and enlightening.
The Bund: The Bund is one of the most noted architectural symbols of Shanghai. The word "Bund" derives from an Anglo-Indian word for an embankment along a muddy waterfront. The Bund, or the waterfront, is now surrounded by about 50 various buildings of different architectural styles including Gothic, Baroque, Romanesque, Classicism and the Renaissance along from No.1 to No.33. Many of the buildings along the river bank are real banks. The others are commercial buildings, national organizations, restaurants, clubs, shops etc. The Bund showcases the architectural buildings of finance and trade. And these big banks and big companies are of international character making the Bund the centre of international finance as well as the famous tourist spots.
Shanghai Museum: Located in the center of Shanghai in People's Square, Shanghai Museum is a large museum of ancient Chinese art. The museum style and presentation surround visitors with artifacts demonstrating ancient wisdom and philosophy. The exterior design of the round dome and the square base symbolizes the ancient idea of a round heaven and a square land. The museum is divided into eleven galleries and three exhibition halls. The eleven Galleries cover most of the major categories of Chinese art: Ancient Bronze, Ancient Ceramics, Paintings, Calligraphy, Ancient Sculpture, Ancient Jade, Coins, Ming and Qing Furniture, Seals, and Minority Nationalities.
Oriental Pearl TV Tower: The Broadcasting & Television Tower of Oriental Pearl is the world's third tallest TV tower after the 553-meter CN Tower in Toronto and the 535-meter Moscow TV Tower. It is located in the tip of Lujiazui on the eastern shore of Huangpu River, confronting the classic beauty of the Bund. The Oriental Pearl TV Tower is 468 meters high. Tourists can get to several observatory decks. In fine weather people can have a commanding view of The Bund and Shanghai, the Chongming Island and the Yangzi River in the distance. The tower also has a hotel, revolving restaurant, karaoke parlors and bars. The ground floor features a shopping area, cafe and an international city exhibit. It also offers deluxe conference rooms that have hosted leaders and VIPs from around the world.
Day 12: Fly from Shanghai – Guilin (Duration: 2 hours).
We catch about two hour long morning flight from Shanghai to Guilin, where we begin our sightseeing tour in the above mentioned locations.
About Guilin City: Located in the northeastern part of Guangxi, Guilin has long been praised as the most picturesque place in China and is one of the most visited by the western tourists. It is a charming place for sightseeing at any time of the year with its pleasant subtropical climate. In autumn, when the sweet osmanthus is in bloom, the air of Guililin city is filled with fragrant smell of the blossoms. The green trees grow everywhere in and outside the city. The name of Guilin literally means "forest of sweet osmanthus". A boat cruising on the beautiful Li River will be the highlight of your travel to Guilin, as you will thoroughly enjoy the winding course of crystal-clear Li River.
Seven Star Park: It is located to the east of Li-River in the Guilin city. The park has such attractions like Seven Star Cave, Dragon Hiding Cave, Flower’s Bridge etc. It is the largest park with one of the most spectacular sights in the city. Entering the park, you will find a hill, named Camel Hill, because of the limestone outcrop looking exactly like a camel resting among the trees. The Seven Star Cave remains at a constant 20 degrees Celsius and it has been a tourist site since the Tang Dynasty. With its featuring peaks, magic caves and verdant gardens, this park has enough to keep any visitor delighted about the place.
The Reed Flute Cave: The cave is named after a kind of flutes growing on the hill which can be made into melodious flutes. Since the cave opened to the public in 1962, a huge number of visitors have visited the cave. It is an amazing fairyland of stalactites, stalagmites, and other stones and stone pillars in different shapes and colors, all glittering against the colorful electric lights. The cave is 240 meters long and travelling through it takes about one hour.
Day 13 Guilin – Yangshuon (by River Cruise) – more sightseeing at Guilin.
After the end of the amazing river cruise, depending upon the availability of time, we do more sightseeing of Guilin, and visit the following sites.
Elephant Trunk Hill: Elephant Trunk Hill is one of the Lijiang River's most important sights. It is located at the junction of the Li and Yang rivers to the southeast of Guilin. The rock hill with an arched hole (known as the water-moon arch) is named after its striking resemblance to an elephant sipping water. On calm days, this giant elephant is reflected on the mirror-like surface of the river, and in the evening, when viewed under a moon-lit sky, the hill creates a lasting and magical impression. On top of the hill, there’s the Samantabhadra Tower, which was built from solid brick dating back to Ming dynasty. The core of the tower is round like a bottle or the handle of a sword, so the tower is also referred to as the ‘Precious Bottle Tower’ and the ‘Sword Handle Tower’. Elephant Trunk Hill is regarded as the symbol of Guilin city.
Solitary Beauty Hill: It occupies an area of about 6,100 square meters, and is 66 meters high above the ground. This hill is one of three famous hills in Guilin consisting of limestones from the ancient times. The peak is named from the famous line of a poem in Southern Dynasty (420-589) - "nothing can outpace this solitary peak in beauty". When sunlit in the dawn sunshine or sunset, the hill looks to be having a purple gown and a golden belt, hence the other name 'Purple Golden Peak'. You can climb a stone stair of 306 steps, which will take you to the top of the hill for a better view of the beautiful Guilin City.
Day 14: Fly from Guilin to Hong Kong (Duration: 25 minutes).
We catch a flight in the morning from Guilin to Hong Kong. It will be only 25 minutes flight, and upon reaching Hong Kong, we immediately proceed to our sightseeing programs in the Hong Kong city.
About Hong Kong City: Hong Kong, described as a 'barren rock' over 150 years ago, has become a world-class financial, trading and business center. It has no natural resources, except one of the finest deep-water ports in the world. A hardworking, adaptable and well-educated workforce of about 3.58 million, coupled with entrepreneurial flair, is the bedrock of Hong Kong's productivity and creativity. Situated at the south-eastern tip of China, Hong Kong is ideally positioned at the center of rapidly developing Eastern Asia. Travel, tourism, trade-related services, transportation services, financial & banking services, and professional services are the main components of trade and services of this city. About 3900 international corporations have established regional headquarters or offices in Hong Kong. The city advocates and practices free trade – a free and liberal investment regime, the absence of trade barriers, no discrimination against overseas investors, freedom of capital movement, well-established rule of law, transparent regulations, and low and predictable taxation.
Wong Tai Sin Temple: a Taoist temple established in 1921, is one of the most famous temples in Hong Kong. It is also renowned among overseas in Southern Asia, Europe, and America. The Temple is named after Wong Chuping, who is believed to have followed Taoism for 40 years and achieved enlightenment. People called him Wong Tai Sin from then on. It is said that he punishes evils, heals the wounded, and rescues the dying. The Temple is known for its fortune-telling. The fortune sticks in Wong Tai Sin Temple are proven to be very accurate. Many people who visit the temple come to have their fortunes told. They light worship sticks, kneel before the main altar, make a wish, and shake a bamboo cylinder containing fortune sticks until one falls out. The stick is exchanged for a piece of paper bearing the same number, and the soothsayer then interprets the fortune on the paper for the worshipper. The architecture of Wong Tai Sin Temple is in the traditional Chinese temple style: grand red pillars, a magnificent golden roof adorned with blue friezes, yellow lattice-work, and resplendent multi-colored carvings.
Jade Market: A visit to the Jade Market in Yau Ma Tei will provide an insight into something very important to Chinese people - Jade. The written character for jade means a combination of beauty and purity. The stone, in all its many hues and colors, is associated with long life and good health. It is smooth and cooling to the touch. Many people wear a jade bracelet to ward off all sorts of health hazards. Grandmothers routinely buy a piece of jade for newborns. Located on Kansu and Battery streets, the Jade Market is a collection of around 400 stalls selling a wide range of jade pendants, rings, bracelets, carvings and ornaments. Open from 10am to 5pm, the market is also the main gathering place for buyers of this fine stone, who today still communicate with secret hand signals when making a purchase. A giant jade stone weighting 3 tons is placed at the junction of Canton Road and Jordan Road as landmark.
Bird Market: In Hong Kong, birds are valued more for their songs than their appearance, and in the Bird Market you can see and hear thousands of them. It's common to see a group of friends sitting around comparing their birds and taking them out for walks in the same way that westerners take their dogs out. Birds and their related paraphernalia are sold here, but bird owners also bring their own birds from home to hang out with their avian mates. There are beautiful wooden cages hanging from the trees and perched on top of every flat surface available, and the noise of birds is just unbelievable. It’s kind of sad to see some of the bigger birds for sale in tiny cages though. A visit to the Bird Market in Kowloon is a must for those interested in exotic birds.
Day 15: Hong Kong Sightseeing Tour- Full Day Sightseeing at Hong Kong.
We continue our sightseeing tour for another day, and visits following famous sites of the city.
Victoria Peak: The popularity of the Peak has been growing fast each day, since the Tram way was opened back on 1888. Recently, hosting to more than 6 million visitors each year, the Tram ride is going to be your most memorable 7 minutes of this breathtaking up-hill ride to the peak, and another 7 minutes of down-hill ride. The ride offers some spectacular views of world famous Victoria Harbour and Kowloon skylines. There’s a lot of places to amuse yourself in the peak, such as Madame Tussaud’s Hong Kong, the Wax Museum featuring the Ripley's Believe It or Not, and the a ride through a dark tunnel called Rise of The Dragon.
Aberdeen: Aberdeen, the largest satellite town of Hong Kong city, is a vibrant waterfront harbor resort. It is unique in the sense that it puts forward the traditional lifestyle and modernity on a single platter. Floating restaurants are highly acclaimed features of this tourist center, which is one of Hong Kong's oldest and most popular attractions. Aberdeen harbor preserves the features of a fishing port, and fishing boats equipped with traditional sampans, shuttle back and forth. Visitors can cruise around the fishing port on the boat and enjoy the freshness of the harbor. Particularly two lucrative floating restaurants 'Jumbo Floating Restaurant' and 'Tai Bak Seafood Boat' in Aberdeen resort constantly attract the visitors. These restaurants are anchored in the harbor. Visitors can travel to the restaurants by taking a free shuttle, and enjoy the delicious seafood as well as other culinary delights especially of Chinese cuisine.
Ocean Park: Ocean Park, which is located on the south end of Hong Kong Island, is another major attraction in Hong Kong. With an area of 170 miles, it's one of the largest ocean parks in the world. The two entrances to Ocean Park (Tai Shue Wan Entrance and Main Entrance) are connected by cable-car. The trip starts from the Middle Kingdom of the park neighboring the Tai Shue Wan Entrance. Walking through the Middle Kingdom with all its temples and pavilions, you see the ‘Hong Kong Jockey Giant Panda Habitat’, home to two lovely pandas, Anan the male, and Jiajia the female. Beyond the Panda habitat, one enters the 'Dinosaur - Now and Then' exhibits with vivid dinosaur models and its history. Then, we continue on to ‘Dolphin Breeding Center’, where we learn of dolphin’s living habits. Visitors can view eight bottlenose dolphins including two little dolphins bred by artificial insemination for the first time in the world. Additional wildlife exhibits include the ‘Butterfly House’, ‘the Goldfish Pagoda’, among others. Then there’s ‘The Water Paradise’, which is one of the most well-equipped aquatic entertainment centers in Asia. It consists of many thrilling slides, zigzag watercourse to swim, etc. Taking the cable-car, visitors ascend to the headland section. From the cable-car, you will have an unparalleled spectacular view of Hong Kong Island and the sublime South China Sea beyond. From here, you can see the expanse of the marvelous maritime landscape comprised of Atoll Reef, Shark Aquarium, Ocean Theater, Ocean Park Tower and among others. Visitors will see morays, groupers, turtles and over 400 kinds of maritime animals from the Pacific Islands or the South China Sea. Actually, the Shark Aquarium is an underwater viewing tunnel to observe the dangerous maritime creatures. Be prepared to look sharks eye to eye as they pass safely over head. Ocean Theater is the most famous and popular spot in the whole Ocean Park. It is an open-air theater in which dolphins and sea lions stage a wonderful performance in a huge pond under the guidance of trainers.
The Repulse Bay: Built on the site of Hong Kong's famous Repulse Bay Hotel, this magnificent home environment is surrounded by greenery and serenity. The Bay offers luxurious sea-view unfurnished and serviced apartments for short and long term lease. It consists of two stunning sea-view apartment buildings, with extensive sporting and recreational facilities catering to all lifestyles - families, couples and singles. With apartments ranging from 977 to 5,868 square feet, the Bay puts a new perspective on modern living, so close to the city and yet so far away. Inside and out, these apartments symbolize a quality of life that is a refreshing antidote to the pressure and pace of Hong Kong today.
Day 16: Departure from Hong Kong.
After one last meal at the hotel, we thank you for being with us and drive you to Hong Kong International Airport for your safe trip back home.