Visits: Beijing, Xian,Yangtze River Cruise,Yichang ,Shanghai Tour Code: OAV
USA - Beijing
Excitement fills the air as you check in for an international flight bound for China. Spend the night aboard the widebody jetliner as it traverses the expansive Pacific Ocean and crosses the international date line.
The plane touches down at Beijing, China’s capital. After clearing customs you are met by your Ritz Tours guide and transferred to the hotel for a good night of rest. On the way to the hotel, you will notice that this is a city in the midst of much change - construction in its final phases abounds everywhere to get ready for the 2008 Olympic Games to be held here.
Beijing (AB, L, DP)
Beijing is home to over 13 million inhabitants and contains numerous historic attractions. Be sure to have breakfast as today’s tour includes plenty of walking. Tiananmen Square boasts the title of being the world’s largest public square, covering a vast 99 square acres. Enter through the gates of the Forbidden City, realizing that in the past, commoners were not allowed onto its grounds. The Forbidden city was home to the emperors of China beginning in 1421 with Ming Emperor Yongle when he moved his imperial court here from Nanjing. After lunch, the group continues on to the emperor’s Summer Palace. Later in the evening you attend a Peking Duck Feast, savoring the tasty cultural cuisine of Northern China.
Beijing (AB, L, DH)
A trip to China would be incomplete without a visit to the Great Wall of China, one of the seven great man-made wonders of the world. The Great Wall snakes its way 3,948 miles across China’s northern frontier and was initially built by emperor Qin Shi Huang in 3 B.C. As you stand atop the Wall, imagine yourself as one of the soldiers that stood guard there against marauders from the north. Today, it stands as a grandiose monument to the greatness of the Chinese civilization. After spending time at the Great Wall, climb down to visit the Sacred Way to the Ming Tomb Museum. Returning back into town, dinner is served at your hotel.
Beijing-Xian (AB, L, DH)
Before departing Beijing, take a pilgrimmage to the solemn Temple of Heaven, where the emperors prayed to the heavens for a plentiful harvest. Board a short flight to Xian, arriving that the historic starting point of the famed Silk Road. Founded as "Chang An" by the Han dynasty’s first emperor Liu Bang in 202 BC, Xian served as the capital to 13 dynasties. On the way into town, drive by Xian’s massive 40-ft City Wall, the only relic that remains from ruins of the imperial days. Dinner is served at the hotel this evening.
Xian - Chongqing - Yangtze River Cruise (AB, L, D)
Depart Xian for Chongqing by air. Chongqing is a bustling city located in the Sichuan province, home of the spiciest cuisine in all of China. Take a brief tour of this important mountain city before heading to the docks. Your Victoria Cruise ship awaits at the river to embark on a majestic Yangtze River adventure. As the sun sets, the ship picks up anchor and prepares to sail down the mighty Yangtze.
Yangtze River Cruise (AB, L, D)
The first shore excursion of your cruise will occur at one of three towns (depending on local river conditions): Shibaozhai, Fengdu, or Wanzhou. Shibaozhai’s attraction lays with its 12-story tall wooden pagoda. Amazingly, it was built 400 years ago without use of a single nail. Fengdu is a peculiar site that is accessed via cable car. It contains numerous statues of devils and ghosts that roam the afterworld. Wanzhou was agglomerated in 1997 to become a part of the greater Chongqing Municipality, although it lies 143 miles away. By the time the Three Gorges Dam is completed, 47% of Wanzhou’s old urban area will be submerged.
Yangtze River Cruise (AB, L, D)
Enter the exciting part of the cruise, the famous Three Gorges! The ship passes through Qutang Gorge, the shortest, narrowest, but most visually dramatic of the three. Next up is Wu Gorge, known for its serene beauty, forest covered mountains and sheer cliffs. Arrive at Wushan where you disembark to board smaller vessels. These vessels allow access to the Lesser Gorges via one of the tributaries of the Yangtze - either Daning River or Shennong Stream. Reboard the cruise ship to pass through Xiling Gorge, the longest and deepest of the Three Gorges. In the evening, sail through the Three Gorges ship locks.
Yangtze River Cruise - Yichang - Shanghai (AB, L, DH)
On this last day of the cruise the ship arrives at Sandouping Village where you disembark to board a motorcoach taking you to the Three Gorges Dam Site. The controversial project is the largest of its type in the world and once completed in 2009, will change the landscape of the Yangtze River Valley forever. Reboard and sail on to our final destination, Yichang, where you transfer to the airport for a flight to Shanghai.
Shanghai (AB, L, DS)
Shanghai is China’s largest metropolis. Cosmopolitan and dynamic, Shanghai stirs the senses. China’s most modern city exudes an international flair that can be traced back 100 years ago to when it was once quartered off into sections occupied by foreign nationals. Spend the morning perusing the exhibits at world famous Shanghai Museum, taking in the 120,000 pieces of Chinese art from the antiquities. In the afternoon, city tour continues with a visit to the Yu Garden, a classical Ming garden built by a wealthy businessman for his parents as an act of filial piety. Take in the local city scenery at bustling shopping district Nanjing Road and at the mile long stretch along the Huangpu River named the Bund. In the evening you attend a Chinese Acrobatics Show to round out a fun filled day.
Shanghai - USA (AB)
Your vacation is over all too soon as you’re transferred to the airport to board the homebound international flight, bidding a fond farewell to China and the Yangtze River.
Departure & Pricing
1/16,30, 2/13,27 (2009)
Price includes fuel surcharge $164. Taxes of $100 not included
September 11th security fee $2.50 - $10.00 not included
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