This 10 days Chinese culture experience tour departing from Xian, going through Shanxi Province with Pingyao and Datong, ending in Beijing, brings you a true exploration of Chinese culture and ancient civilization. Taking high-speed trains as the main transportation will not only low your cost down but also bring you a good chance to enjoy the urban scenery from the middle to the north of China. In this tour, your spirit and eyes will be fascinated deeply by the incredible Terracotta Warriors and Horses, Forbidden City, Mutianyu Great Wall, Temple of Heaven, and the unparalleled Yungang Grottoes, Hanging Temple… Moreover, walking around the antique Pingyao Ancient Town, you definitely will be amazed by the strong historic flavor and the bustling night scenery.
*Conquer the top Wonder of the World – the Great Wall of China at Mutianyu.
*Visit Tian’anmen Square, Forbidden City, Summer Palace to know more about traditional China.
*Learn about the sports deeply in Bird’s Nest and Water Cube.
*Visit one of the biggest Buddhism Grottoes in China, the Yungang Grottoes
*Step onto the Hanging Temple, and enjoy the thrilling but safe experience
*Ramble in Pingyao Ancient Town. Measure the history with your eyes, and see the daylight fade until the lanterns light up
*Visit Qiao Family Courtyard to explore the history of the Qiaojia family and the development of Shanxi merchants culture in the Ming and Qing Dynasties
- Day 1: Xian Arrival (No meal)
Upon your arrival at Xian airport/train station, the local driver will pick you up from the exit gate by holding a welcome board with your name and transfer to downtown hotel for check-in. Free and easy on your arrangement for rest of the day. Accommodation: Overnight in Xian
- Day 2: Xian Tour (B, L)Terracotta Warriors and Horses, Huaqing Palace
Your Xian exploration begins with world’s heritage Terracotta Warriors and Horses. Known as “the Eighth Wonders of the World”, it was found by four local farmers while drilling a well in 1974. Now it has turned into one of the most important attractions in China and the No.1 attractive site in Xi’an. The museum includes Pit 1(the largest pit), Pit 2, Pit 3, and the exhibition hall of the chariots and horses. You will stay in the museum for 2-3 hours. Listening to the explanation from the expert tour guide, you will learn the hidden story of those live-sized sculptures and history of their owner: First Emperor of Qin who is also the first emperor of China. After lunch, continue your visit to Huaqing Palace which used to be the royal bathing spot in the Tang Dynasty and here you will learn the moving love story of the Emperor Xuanzong and his concubine Lady Yang. Accommodation: Overnight in Xian
- Day 3: Xian Tour (B, L)Shaanxi History Museum, Big Wild Goose Pagoda, Ancient City Wall, Bell and Drum Tower Square, Muslim Quarter
As one of the most famous historical cities, Xian has lots of interesting places to go! Today you will explore the must-see sights in Xian downtown area. Firstly, come to the Shaanxi History Museum( closed on every Monday),which is one of the biggest and most famous museums in China. The museum houses the cultural heritage unearthed in Shaanxi Province. Although it’s a provincial Museum, the collection of relics here is at national level from both quantity and quality as Xian had been Capitals for more than 13 dynasties in ancient China. Following the tour guide, walk and stop at those priceless exhibits to learn the hidden history and splendid civilization of China. After that, move on to Big Wild Goose Pagoda. On the way to the attraction spot, your guide will introduce the history and culture of this ancient city for you to catch a glimpse of reason why so many well-known relics were discovered on this land. Big Wild Goose Pagoda was originally built to hold Buddhist sutra and figurines of the Buddha that Xuanzang brought back from India in Tang Dyansty, 652 A.D. Now there is a big square divided into North Square and South Square, surrounding the Big Wild Goose Pagoda. The design of the buildings and statues is in Tang style, showing people the ever glory of that great time. It’s busier in the evening when many activities with Tang elements held by local amateur. In the afternoon, continue your visit to Ancient City Wall. It is the most complete preserved and the largest city wall in China, which was built for the military defense in the ancient time. Since it is cycling the city, visitors can ride a bike around the city wall (optional ). Later, move on to the Bell and Drum Tower Square, which locates in the very center of the city and is considered as the symbol of this old capital. Walking forward, you will come to Muslim Quarter where you will find many special local products and authentic local snacks. You can enjoy preserved meat, casserole, various noodles, and purchase some Terracotta Warriors imitation as souvenirs. Accommodation: Overnight in Xian
- Day 4: Xian-Pingyao by High-speed Train (B, L)Qiao Family Courtyard, Shuanglin Temple
In the morning, the Xian local driver will pick you up from the downtown hotel and drive around 1 hour to Xian North Train Station for your high-speed train to Pingyao. The train rides around 3.5 hours, you can take this chance to enjoy the scenery on the way. When you arrive at Pingyao Gucheng Train Station, there will be the local English speaking tour guide and driver waiting for you at the exit gate by holding a welcome board with your name. You will begin your exploration with Qiao Family Courtyard which could be said as a name card of travel to Shanxi Province, boasting its unparallel value of viewing, scientific and historical research. It’s a typical folk-art museum with strong characteristics of Shanxi merchants’ culture, reflecting the social and economic life in Ming and Qing Dynasties. Different from the tiny and elegant ancient town embraced by streams in southern China, Qiao Family impresses visitors strikingly with its square layout, tall and thick walls, grey bricks and red lanterns as well as classic overhanging eaves, suddenly bringing you back to ancient northern China when you stepping into the yard. Later, move on to Shuanglin Temple. This temple could be said as a “surprise” among the attractions in Pingyao because it is a lesser-known site but have been collecting incredible artworks in its lengthy past. It’s a Buddhist temple where you will meet many delicate wall paintings, colored statues and beautiful buildings of Tang, Song and Ming Dynasties. Accommodation: Overnight in Pingyao
- Day 5: Pingyao-Datong by High-speed Train (B, L)Pingyao Ancient Town
Today you will officially start your visit in Pingyao Ancient City. Bearing the history over 2700 years, sharing the title “Four Best Preserved Ancient Chinese Cities” together with Langzhong in Sichuan Province, Lijiang in Yunnan City and Shexian of Anhui Province, this ancient city is one of the only two ancient cities succeeding in applying World Cultural Heritage in China. Pingyao started to be built in Western Zhou Dynasty (827BC-782BC) and extended in 1370 AD, Ming Dynasty. Until today, the basic layout and landscape of Ming and Qing Dynasty is still visible in Pingyao. The city had ever governed China’s finance in Ming and Qing Dynasty with over 20 exchange shops (it’s like bank in ancient time) headquartered here, about the half of the whole country, gaining the title of “Ancient Chinese Wall Street”. Today, you can still find the basic look of its ever prosperity from the relics. Like the most city walls, Pingyao City Wall was built in early Ming Dynasty on the purpose of defense against the foreign invasion and get patched 26 times in later generations. The Wall is extremely admirable with its strong character in the lengthy past when you stroll on the wall top and behold the mottled bricks over there. Stretching round the city 6,000 meters in length and up 12 meters in height, the ancient City Wall divided the small city into 2 distinct worlds inside and outside its embrace: the inside was prosperous in trade with the streets lined with shops and people coming and going. Visit the relics of the famous Rishengchang Exchange Shop to trace the history of Chinese financial industry. Built in 1823 by the general manager Lei Lvtai with fund support from local rich merchant Li Dajin, Rishengchang had even dominated the economic artery of Qing Empire in 19th century. Setting your feet on the Ming-Qing Street, the one of busiest commercial street in China, you shall have a better idea in mind about how advanced the development in China was in that time. Today, the relics of those ancient shops still are well preserved and visible, including exchange shops, banks, drugstore, butcher, pawnshop… Local snack shops, souvenir shops and things like that inherits the ever prosperity of the street and dominates the major crowds here. Besides, joining in a Paper Cutting Class in the ancient city would be a big highlight today. Following the local expert and waving the scissors in hands, you will amazingly get a vivid “bird” or “fish”, through which the interesting Chinese culture could be caught a glimpse. Last, you will be dropped off at train station to catch the evening high-speed train which rides 3.5 hours to Datong. Upon arrival at Datong, there will be the local driver picking you up and transfer to local hotel. Accommodation: Overnight in Datong
- Day 6: Datong Tour (B, L)Yungang Grottoes, Shanhua Temple, Huayan Monastery, The Nine-Dragon Wall
Today you will spend the full day to explore the splendid Datong! Firstly, drive westwards to Yungang Grottoes. As the first batch of key cultural relics under state protection, also on the world heritage list, Yuagang Grottoes has a highly cultural and artistic meaning. It not only shows the traditional Chinese artistic style, but also incorporates the art characteristics of ancient India, the western regions and the Central Plain. Yungang Grottoes is the beginning of the "sinicization" of Chinese grotto art which mainly stores 45 grottoes and 51,000 stone statues. Later, continue your visit to Shanhua Temple which is a Buddhist temple with great fusion Han culture in Song Dynasty and ancient northern ethnic culture of Jin and Liao Dynasties. Although it’s lesser visited compared with other Datong attractions, the artistic level of relics there including sculptures, wall paintings and ancient architectures show a pretty high level. Moving on to Huayan Monastery, located in southwest of Datong ancient city was firstly built in 1038 of Liao Dynasty and rebuilt in 1140 of Jin Dynasty after being burning down. It’s a typical Buddhist monastery with name derived from the famous Buddhist scripture Avatamsaka. The monastery was divided into two parts: upper Huayan Temple and lower Huayan Temple connected each with a door. The best highlight of the upper Huayan Temple is the Mahavira Hall of Liao Time while the lower Huayan stores many precious Buddhist statues of Liao time. Huayan Monastery without doubt is a gem of Chinese ancient architectures and Buddhist culture. Last, pay a visit to The Nine-Dragon Wall, built in late Ming Dynasty, is composed of colored glaze. Nine dragons are different in shape and form, each of which is connected by water grass, white clouds and rocks. It presents the superb sculpture skills of ancient China. Accommodation: Overnight in Datong
- Day 7: Datong-Beijing by High-speed Train (B, L)Hanging Temple, Yingxian Wooden Pagoda
Today the first site will be Hanging Temple. Located between the cliffs of Mt. Hengshan, it is the only unique temple in China that integrates Buddhism, Taoism and Confucianism. The whole monastery is built in wooden framework structure. Though not very big, it astonishes people by the building design that relies on a mortise joint and embeds into the cliff without falling down. Owning a history over 1,500 years, Hanging Temple have earned compliment from many notable literati and poets in their works. Later, come to “China’s First Wooden Pagoda”, Yingxian Wooden Pagoda which shares the same fame of “Three Marvelous Towers in the World” with Leaning Tower of Pisa and Eiffel Tower. Built in 1056 of the Khitan-led Liao Dynasty, it is a well-deserved miracle in the architectural history, just imagine: a complete wooden-structured tower of 65.84 meters (like a 20-floor modern building) without a single iron nail survived in 40 earthquakes, 200 shooting and bombarding as well as countless thunder and lightning…amazing, right? It Maybe the precious relics of Sakyamuni’s 2 teeth stored here echoed the Pogoda’s tough personality and bless it with immeasurable Buddhist power. After the visit, you will head to train station to catch the 2.5-hour high-speed train to Beijing. When you arrive at Beijing, there will be the local driver picking you up and transfer to local hotel. Accommodation: Overnight in Beijing
- Day 8: Beijing Tour (B, L)Tian'anmen Square. Forbidden City, Temple of Heaven, Beijing Hutongs
You will start today’s tour with the largest city square in the world - Tian'anmen Square. The square has a very important role in China’s history and visiting it is a dream for many generations of Chinese people. So don’t be surprised when you see the square is teeming with Chinese people. You can just wander around the square and take in the rich history. Then you will follow your tour guide into the incredible Forbidden City, which was once the royal palace of the Ming and Qing dynasties with more than 70 big and small palaces and over 9,000 rooms. It is one of the largest and most well-preserved ancient wooden structures in the world. Walking into the grand and majestic complex, you will steep in China’s long history and marvel at this architectural masterpiece. After lunch, continue your visit to Temple of Heaven, famous for its meticulous layout, unique architecture and magnificent decoration, this grand complex was built for the emperors of the Ming and Qing dynasties to offer sacrifices to the heaven and pray for good harvests. It was listed as a world heritage site by UNESCO in 1998. You will definitely marvel at the craftsmanship and learn more historical facts about ancient China. Beijing Hutongs are full of history which attracts many worldwide tourists! Today your tour guide will take you to feel the charm of the hutongs in Shichahai scenic Area. Taking a rickshaw to ride along the ancient alleys, you will know more about the background information of the Hutongs, experience authentic old Beijing life, and witness the blending of tradition and modernity. Accommodation: Overnight in Beijing
- Day 9: Beijing Tour (B, L)Mutianyu Great Wall, Bird's Nest and Water Cube, Summer Palace
Today will be the highlight of your Beijing tour as you will be hiking on the famous world’s heritage Mutianyu Great Wall. It would be around 2 hours’ driving, you can take this chance to see the urban and suburban scenery of Chinese capital on the way. Mutianyu Great Wall is the most scenic part of Chinese Great Wall. It was built in the early Ming Dynasty at 1368 and stretches for 5400 meters. 90 percent of the Mutianyu is covered by vegetation. So in each season this part of the Great Wall will treat visitors with its unique scenery. If pure-hiking is too much for you, there are also options of cable car and toboggan to see the spectacular scenery from different angles ( optional). Afterwards, you’ll have an exterior visit of the marvelous Bird's Nest and Water Cube on the way back to Beijing, which were built for the 2008 Beijing Olympic Games. Walking around the outside of the building to appreciate the unique design and take some pictures would be perfect. Last, come to enjoy the amazing royal garden in Summer Palace. With an area of 2.9 square kilometers, this palace was the best place where the emperors of the Qing Dynasty spent their summers. Here you will enjoy the amazing lake view, explore the exquisite long corridor, appreciate precious cultural relics, step on the elegant stone bridge, see high old trees, etc. You will love every minute here with so much to see. Accommodation: Overnight in Beijing
- Day 10: Beijing Departure (B)
The 10 days tour will end by today. At the confirmed time, the driver will meet you at the hotel lobby and transfer to Beijing train station or airport for your departure. Accommodation: N/A
Booking MethodStep 1: You can directly book online or please feel free to share your tour plans or thoughts at [email protected] , our travel consultant will contact you within 12 hours. Step 2: A small amount deposit will be required to book a tour. After deposit received, a detailed service voucher will be sent to you to confirm the booking. Step 3: Balance due will be required 7-15 days ahead of your travel date. If you have any further question, please feel free to contact us! Email: [email protected] Cellphone number: +86 18792910029 WhatsApp / Wechat ID: 008618792910029 Facebook: @xianholidaystravelagency
In each destination, you’ll enjoy a comfortable stay in a great location!
The hotels we choose are based on star rating, great locations, well-equipped facilities, cozy bed, high quality service and guests’ feedbacks. Choices are a lot ranging from luxury 5 star, comfortable 4 star to budget 3 star. You could decide where to stay to best suit for your budget and likes. Generally, the hotels have both Western and Chinese breakfast with a wide choices.
If you have already got an ideal hotel, please feel free to tell our travel consultants and they’ll book the hotel for you.
Our Tour Guide
The core of our service is excellent travel guides. Over 20 years, we have built up a considerable professional guide team that is knowledgeable, attentive and flexible. The most experienced and reliable guides will be arranged for your unique China tour. Our passionate guide team is full of contagious enthusiasm and keen interest to share culture and history in a pleasant manner. We are always glad at your service to lead you to explore a real China and experience authentic local life in China.
Our Driver and Vehicle
The first mission of our service is to ensure you feel safe and comfortable during your travel. The vehicles we use are air-conditioned, clean and well-maintained. Our drivers are all licensed drivers with many years of driving experience. Moreover, we offer free baby seats for families with little kids.
Food is a very important part of Chinese culture. You won’t want to miss the opportunity to taste the real local Chinese food!
Buffet breakfast will be included in the hotel if you would like accommodation to be arranged by us. Having lunch at local restaurants close and convenient to the attractions you will visit, you would enjoy the local dishes in each city. Chinese style, Vegetarian or Muslim meals are all available. If you have any other diet requirements or allergies, please feel free to let us know, we will try our best to organize it.
For daily dinner, you are suggested to have it on your own when you are exploring each city in your own time, this way would be more flexible for you to choose food as per your interest and preference.