Yangtze River Cruise from Chongqing
Home China City Tours Beijing Tours Beijing Yangtze River Tours 13 Days China Private Tour from Beijing with Yangtze Cruise

Tour Overview

This tour takes you on an incredible journey through some of China’s most iconic destinations. Starting in Beijing, you’ll explore Tian’anmen Square, the Forbidden City, and experience local life in the hutongs. Explore the breathtaking wonders of Xi’an, including the Terracotta Warriors and the Ancient City Wall. Immerse yourself in the vibrant culture of Chengdu and volunteer at the Dujiangyan Panda Base.

A cruise trip on the Yangtze River is the highlight of this itinerary, during which you’ll marvel at the Three Gorges and visit historic sites. Finally, end your adventure in Shanghai, where modernity meets tradition in this dazzling metropolis. This 13-day private China tour from Beijing offers the perfect blend of history, natural beauty, and cultural immersion.

Highlights of this tour:

1. Enjoy breathtaking mountain views and learn about ancient history at Mutianyu Section of the Great Wall.
2. Explore the opulent palaces and courtyards of China’s imperial history at the Forbidden City.
3. Marvel at the lifelike life-size clay soldiers of the Terracotta Army.
4. Be a panda volunteer at the Dujiangyan Panda Base and spend an unforgettable day with these adorable animals.
5. Cruise along the picturesque Yangtze River, witness the spectacular Three Gorges, and explore the Fengdu Ghost Town and other historic sites.
6. Experience the cosmopolitan charm of Shanghai through the stunning skyline of The Bund.

Day-by-day Itinerary

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  1. Welcome to Beijing! Upon your arrival, you will be greeted by your guide at the airport and transferred to your hotel.

    Take some time to rest and recover from your journey. If you're feeling up to it, you can explore the nearby area or relax at the hotel.

  2. In the morning, your tour guide will lead you to Tian'anmen Square, a huge public square in the heart of Beijing. You will stroll around the square, admire the Monument to the People's Heroes, and learn about its historical significance from your guide. Next, explore the awe-inspiring Palace Museum, also known as the Forbidden City, once the imperial palace of the Ming and Qing Dynasties. This huge building complex is dominated by yellow-glazed tiles, highlighting the royal style. The Palace Museum contains countless cultural relics, which are a witness of China's 5,000 years of civilization. You will marvel at the grandeur of the complex, wander through the intricate halls and courtyards, and gain an insight into the fascinating history of Chinese emperors.

    Beijing Forbidden City
    Forbidden City

    In the afternoon, we will take you on a tour of Beijing Hutongs, where these traditional narrow alleys offer you a glimpse of the local way of life. Hop onto a rickshaw and cross the labyrinthine lanes, passing by courtyard homes, local markets, and traditional workshops. You can also participate in some activities such as a calligraphy lesson or a traditional tea ceremony (at your own expense).

  3. Enjoy a hearty breakfast at the hotel and then start your day with a visit to the Temple of Heaven, a masterpiece of Chinese architecture and a symbol of imperial worship. You can explore the park-like surroundings, witness locals practicing Tai Chi, and learn about the religious ceremonies here.

    After that, head to the Mutianyu Great Wall, one of the best-preserved sections of the Great Wall in China. Its majestic walls and enemy towers, as well as its pristine natural scenery, make it one of the most popular sections among tourists. You can take a cable car or hike up to the top of the city wall to revel in the stunning views of the surrounding mountains. Take some time to walk along the border, take some memorable photos, and absorb the awe-inspiring history that surrounds you.

    Beijing Mutianyu Great Wall
    Mutianyu Great Wall

  4. Today, you will spend the whole morning immersed in the beautiful Summer Palace, a vast imperial garden. This is a place suitable for visits in all seasons. In spring, various flowers bloom; in summer, the breeze brushes through the lotus ponds; in autumn, the garden is adorned with red leaves; and in winter, it is covered in pure white snow. The landscape of hills and water is complemented by intricate designs, showcasing the pinnacle of garden art. You can explore elaborately designed pavilions, stroll through serene gardens, and appreciate the tranquility of Kunming Lake.

    After that, you will indulge in a culinary delight by learning how to eat Beijing Roast Duck in the right way. A local chef will guide you through slicing the juicy duck meat and serving it with condiments, pancakes and sauces.

    Beijing Food - Roast Duck
    Beijing Roast Duck

    In the evening, bid farewell to Beijing as you board a flight to Xi'an. Upon arrival, your guide will transfer you to your Xi'an hotel for a good rest.

  5. After breakfast, your guide will take you on an extraordinary journey to the Terracotta Warriors and Horses, a UNESCO World Heritage site and one of the most significant archaeological discoveries in the world. Upon reaching the museum, follow your guide to explore the three excavation pits, witnessing life-sized clay soldiers, horses, and chariots buried alongside the first emperor of China, Qin Shi Huang. Get a glimpse into the history behind this remarkable construction.

    After the visit, you'll be transferred to a workshop where, under the guidance of a skilled craftsman, you can create your own mini clay warrior - a unique hands-on experience. Unleash your imagination and shape the clay into a miniature replica, bringing a piece of history home with you.

    Xian Make a Terracotta Warrior
    Make a Mini Terracotta Warrior

    Then, drive back to the downtown area to visit the Ancient City Wall, a well-preserved fortification that encircles the historic center of Xi'an. You can rent a bike (optional) and ride along the wall, admiring the city from above, or take a leisurely walk and soak in the ambiance of this ancient structure.

  6. In the morning, visit the Shaanxi History Museum and immerse yourself in the rich history of Shaanxi Province. It is one of the largest and most comprehensive history museums in China. The museum is rich in collections, showing the historical and cultural evolution of the Shaanxi region from the Neolithic era to the Qing Dynasty. Here, you can get a glimpse of the treasures of Chinese history, such as the terracotta warriors of the Qin Dynasty, jade wares of the Han Dynasty, and tri-colored glazed potteries of the Tang Dynasty.

    Shaanxi History Museum Xian
    Shaanxi History Museum

    Then, you will be transferred to the Muslim Quarter to dive into the vibrant atmosphere. Stroll through bustling market streets filled with shops, food stalls, and colorful souvenirs. You will indulge in local delicacies such as lamb skewers, sesame cakes, and pomegranate juice.

    In the afternoon, board a high-speed train from Xi'an to Chengdu, known as the "Land of Abundance." Enjoy the comfortable journey as you travel through the picturesque countryside. Upon arrival in Chengdu, your guide will meet you at the station and transfer you to your hotel.

  7. Today, let's experience the once-in-a-lifetime opportunity of being a panda volunteer at Dujiangyan Panda Base. You will be involved in activities such as preparing panda food, cleaning the enclosure, watching documentaries and even seeing pandas being fed up by experienced keepers at a very close distance.

    Learn about their conservation efforts and contribute to the well-being of these endangered species.

    Panda Volunteer Program at Dujiangyan Giant Panda Base
    Panda Volunteer Program at Dujiangyan Giant Panda Base

    After your panda volunteer experience, return to Chengdu and spend the rest of the day at your leisure. You can explore the city, visit local markets, or simply relax and immerse yourself in the local culture.

  8. Begin your day by visiting Jinli Old Street, a bustling pedestrian street that showcases the charm of ancient Chengdu. Walk along the vibrant alley lined with traditional-style buildings, local handicraft shops, and teahouses. Immerse yourself in the lively atmosphere and taste local snacks or sip tea while enjoying traditional Sichuan performances.

    After breakfast, begin your Chengdu city tour by visiting Jinli Old Street, a bustling pedestrian street that showcases the charm of ancient Chengdu. You will walk along the vibrant alley lined with traditional-style buildings, local handicraft shops, and tea houses. Immerse yourself in the lively atmosphere and taste local snacks or sip tea while enjoying traditional Sichuan performances.

    Jinli Old Street Chengdu
    Jinli Old Street

    Next, you will be guided to explore the Chengdu Rice Wine Museum, where you can learn about the history and production process of this famous local beverage. Also, discover the various types of rice wine and even participate in wine tastings to savor the unique flavors.

    In the evening, take a bullet train to Chongqing, a major metropolis and the gateway to the Yangtze River. Upon arrival, you will be transferred to the cruise ship that will take you on an unforgettable journey along the Yangtze River.

  9. Wake up to the tranquil beauty of the Yangtze River before attending a morning Tai Chi class on the deck of a cruise ship. Chinese Tai Chi is a kind of Chinese traditional martial art and an important part of Chinese traditional culture. Through slow and smooth movements, Tai Chi can reconcile the energy of the body and the heart, enhance the strength and flexibility of the body, and improve the fitness level of the body. Before lunch, you will be free to move around the ship and enjoy the magnificent views.

    In the afternoon, you will take a shore excursion to Fengdu Ghost City, an otherworldly complex of temples, shrines, and statues related to Chinese mythology and the afterlife that is nearly 2,000 years old. You will learn a lot of interesting "ghost stories".

    Fengdu Ghost City
    Fengdu Ghost City

    In the evening, enjoy an optional night show, "War Fires of the Three Kingdoms," which showcases the history and battles of ancient China through fascinating performances and stunning visual effects. Delight in this immersive cultural experience after a delicious dinner on board.

  10. After breakfast, you have the option to visit the White Emperor City, a historic site perched on a hilltop overlooking the Yangtze River. With a long history, the city was once the capital of the ancient state of Ba. You will explore many cultural attractions, such as the White Emperor Temple, Entrusting Orphan Hall, and more, immersing yourself in the legends and stories associated with this ancient place.

    Cruise through the magnificent Qutang Gorge, the shortest but most striking section of the Three Gorges. You will admire the sheer cliffs, jagged peaks, and the turbulent waters surrounding you, creating a breathtaking natural spectacle.

    Qutang Gorge Yangtze River Cruise
    Qutang Gorge

    As the journey continues, enter the charming Wu Gorge, which is characterized by mist-shrouded mountains and lush greenery. You will be captivated by the ever-changing landscapes. Immersed yourself in the tranquility of this picturesque area. We will enjoy a shore excursion to Shennv Stream, a tributary of the Yangtze River. Hop on a small boat through the narrow gorges, where you can appreciate the unspoiled beauty of the surroundings and learn about local customs and legends.

    In the evening, unwind and be entertained by the Crew Cabaret and Talent Show, which features performances by the ship's crew showcasing their talents and skills.

  11. After breakfast, bid farewell to the captain and crew before disembarking to visit the Three Gorges Dam. This monumental engineering feat is the largest hydroelectric power station in the world. Spanning the Yangtze River, it has a total length of 2,335 meters and a dam crest elevation of 185 meters. You will learn about the construction of this massive project, its environmental impact, and its significance to the region.

    Three Gorges Dam
    Three Gorges Dam

    After the visit, transfer you to Yichang City and catch a bullet train to Shanghai, one of the most international cities in China. Upon arrival in Shanghai, a local guide and driver will meet you at the railway station and escort you to your hotel. Take some time to settle in and rest for the evening.

  12. Your Shanghai city tour begins at the iconic waterfront promenade - The Bund. You'll take a leisurely stroll along the Huangpu River, marveling at the coexistence of colonial-era buildings and futuristic skyscrapers. Admire the stunning architecture and capture unforgettable photos of the city skyline.

    Afterwards, you'll be guided to ascend the Shanghai Tower, one of the tallest skyscrapers in the world, for panoramic views of the entire city from its observation deck. Enjoy a bird's-eye perspective of Shanghai's sprawling urban landscape and get a glimpse of its impressive scale and modernity.

    Shanghai Tower
    Shanghai Tower

    For the remaining time, you are free to explore Shanghai at your own pace. Your guide will be happy to assist you in arranging activities based on your preferences. Whether you want to indulge in shopping, visit art galleries, or experience the vibrant nightlife, Shanghai offers endless possibilities.

  13. After breakfast, your guide will escort you to the airport for your departure. You 13-day China Private Tour from Beijing with Yangtze Cruise ends here! Bid farewell to China with cherished memories. Safe travels!

Tour Price ($=USD)

From $2799 P.P, which is based on a private tour for 2 people. The price varies depending on the activity, number of people, travel date, and selected hotel.


Price Includes

  • 12 nights' accommodation;
  • Meals mentioned in the itinerary;
  • Private land transportation in an air-conditioned vehicle with licensed drivers;
  • Excellent local English-speaking tour guides services as mentioned in the itinerary;
  • Entrance tickets as mentioned in the itinerary;
  • China Travel Insurance.

Price Excludes

  • Flights to Beijing / off Shanghai;
  • Any optional activities inside the attractions;
  • Any item not mentioned in the itinerary;
  • All kinds of gratuities for guides, drivers & others.
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