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Save $600 per couple | $300 solo

Exotic China, Tibet + Pandas

13 days

Travel Privately Any Day

Our Distinctive A+R Style

+ At a lesser-visited stretch of the Great Wall, assist staff in its restoration before ascending the Wall for your guided tour.
+ Spend time with a Thangka painter in his studio for a rare glimpse inside Tibetan art and culture.
+ Join staff behind the scenes for an up-close encounter with Pandas at feeding time.
+ Experience 21st-century engineering marvels aboard the high speed rail from Chengdu to Xian and on Shanghai’s Maglev Train.
+ Donning special white gloves, join curators at the Xian City Museum to Touch Antiquity.
+ Enjoy a tranquil sunset cycling tour atop the ancient walls of Xian.

Visit 6 UNESCO World Heritage sites c

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On arrival at the airport and clearance through immigration and customs formalities, you’ll be warmly greeted and escorted to the luxurious Fairmont Beijing Hotel in the heart of the city.


Beijing’s Imperial Highlights

The Fairmont - Beijing, China

Your day begins as it does for millions of people across China: With an invigorating Tai Chi session. On the splendid grounds of the Temple of Heaven c, an experienced English-speaking Tai Chi Master will conduct a private class for our guests. Then join your engaging guide for a tour of this UNESCO World Heritage Site; it’s a resplendent example of Ming Dynasty design and engineering and offers fascinating insight into ancient Chinese beliefs in numerology and cosmology.

After lunch, you’ll continue your sightseeing in the center of the capital. Stand in Tiananmen Square and admire the architectural landmarks that surround one of the world’s largest and grandest public plazas. Then follow in the footsteps of Ming Dynasty emperors as you tour the Forbidden City c, a vast complex of places, courtyards and pavilions.  This evening, you’ll sit down to a traditional Peking Duck Banquet.  Meals B+L+D


Another Brick in the Wall

The Fairmont - Beijing, China

This morning, you’ll journey into the rugged mountains north of the capital to a remote section of the Great Wall c. With far fewer visitors and sections still undergoing restoration, you’ll enjoy an authentic Great Wall experience afforded to few other travelers. The adventure begins as you join a team of conservationists to assist in their efforts. Using bricks made from the same materials used centuries ago and with guidance from the staff, you’ll hand-lay a few bricks before stepping back to appreciate the work you’ve done; it promises a sense of accomplishment that you will long remember. Then moving on to sections already-restored, you’ll ascend to the top of the Great Wall for a guided tour, learning more about the history of this ancient defensive structure and taking in the sweeping views of the surrounding hills and mountains.

After lunch, you’ll tour the resplendent Summer Palace c, erstwhile retreat of China’s emperors. Set on wooded hills surrounding a tranquil lake, this ensemble of pavilions, palaces and gardens offers a glimpse into Imperial life long ago. After sightseeing, we’ll take you back to the hotel where your evening is free to dine and relax as you wish.  Meals B+L


Fly to Lhasa, Tibet

Shangri-La - Lhasa, Tibet

You’ll be transferred to the airport today for your included flight to Tibet. On arrival in Lhasa, you’ll be escorted to the luxurious Shangri-La Hotel. The rest of this day is unplanned so you can relax and acclimate to the altitude. This evening, you’ll dine here at the hotel.  Meals B+D


Experience Tibetan Traditions

Shangri-La - Lhasa, Tibet

This morning we’ll take you to Chakpori Hill to join local residents as they perform Kora. Observing and even participating in this ancient Buddhist rite of walking and prayer will give you an authentic experience of Tibet’s enduring spiritual traditions. Then visit Norbulingka, the summer palace of the Dalai Lamas. Built in the 18th century, this expansive palace complex encompasses tranquil wooded areas, landscaped garden grounds and lovely pavilions. Continue with a tour of the Sera Monastery, founded in the 15th century, and then spend time with local artists at a Tangka painting studio to learn about this ancient art form.  Meals B+L


The Potala Palace

Shangri-La - Lhasa, Tibet

Today’s full day tour begins with the magnificent Potala Palace c, described by British-born essayist Pico Iyer in this way: “The very center of Tibet is Lhasa and the very center of Lhasa, for more than three centuries, has been the Potala Palace. An unfathomable building erected on a rock face 13 stories high, it has golden turrets on the roof that can be seen 12 miles away, and it stretches for more than 1,000 feet along a ridge against the snowcaps. The Potala looks and feels like no other building on the planet”.

Next you’ll visit Jokhang Monastery. Originally founded in the 7th century, this 4-story timber structure topped with gold remains an important pilgrimage site for Tibetan Buddhists. Nearby, you’ll have a chance to explore Barkhor Street where you’ll see traditional homes and colorful prayer flags fluttering in the breeze as you join residents and visitors browsing through the many shops and market stalls.  Meals B+L

We’ll take you to the airport today for your included flight to the thriving city of Chengdu in southwestern China. Upon arrival, you’ll be met and escorted to the 5-star Shangri-La Hotel. Meals B

Established to breed and then reintroduce Giant Pandas into their native habitats, the Center at Dujiangyan Panda Valley offers a chance to see and learn about these amazing creatures. Taking you behind the scenes, you’ll have the rare and unique opportunity to engage with Giant Pandas as you join the staff to participate in their care. You’re sure to get close to these animals – figuratively and literally – as you help to clean their enclosures. We’ve scheduled your visit at feeding time, so you can even assist in the preparation of their meal. Educational sessions and time to explore the grounds of the Panda Center complete our exclusive Panda Encounter experience. This evening’s Hot Pot dinner introduces you to a classic Sichuan dish.  Meals B+L+D


By High Speed Rail to Xian

Hilton Hotel - Xian, China

We’ll take you to the rail station today to board the train Xian. Inaugurated at the end of 2017, this brand new High-Speed Rail service has reduced the travel time from nearly 15 hours to less than 5 hours. Traveling at speeds up to 155 mph, you’ll enjoy comfortable First Class seating for this exciting and scenic journey. On arrival in China’s ancient capital, you’ll be escorted to the deluxe Hilton Hotel, ideally situated within the city’s ancient walls. A+R guests will enjoy an upgrade to Executive Rooms with high-speed Internet and access to the Lounge for breakfast and cocktails.  Meals B


Terra Cotta Army c + Exclusive Touch Antiquity Experience

Hilton Hotel - Xian, China

This morning, you’ll stand in awe before the thousands of life-size terra cotta soldiers that were buried long ago to guard the tomb of China’s first emperor. Our expert guide is on hand to illuminate the amazing history of this ancient burial site and the dramatic story of its discovery by local farmers in 1974. This afternoon finds you at the Xian City Museum for our exclusive Touch Antiquity experience… Donning special white gloves, you’ll be able to handle and examine priceless ancient artifacts as a museum curator offers insight into their provenance and historical significance. End your day with a sunset cycling tour atop the ancient defensive walls of the city.  Meals B+L

You’ll be escorted to the airport for your included flight to Shanghai. On arrival in the heart of this sophisticated and vibrant metropolis, you’ll be escorted to the Fairmont Peace Hotel, our luxury landmark overlooking the historic waterfront Bund.  Meals B

Today’s sightseeing begins along the Bund, home to impressive landmarks built more than a century ago by Japanese and European trading companies. Then delight in the beauty of Yu Yuan Garden, originally created by a Ming Dynasty court official as a retreat for his aging parents. Close to the garden, you’ll have time to stroll among the many shops that comprise the Old City Bazaar.

After lunch, you’ll visit the Shanghai Museum, highly regarded for its expansive collection encompassing thousands of years of Chinese arts and culture – including ancient bronzes, celadon pottery, precious jade, and exquisite antique furniture. End your sightseeing atop Shanghai Tower. Soaring 2,073 feet into the sky, this 128-story skyscraper boasts the world’s highest observation deck and one of the fastest elevators. This evening’s farewell dinner showcases the skillfully prepared Chinese specialties of Din Tai Fung, one of Shanghai’s most popular restaurants.  Meals B+L+D


Depart Shanghai

You’ll be escorted to the airport today for your onward journey.  Meals B

Private Tour Add-Ons

Hong Kong Insider

Enhance your travels through China and Asia with our signature Private Touring in Hong Kong. We include your choice of deluxe or luxury hotel, chauffeured transfers when you come and go, and our exclusive Hong Kong Insider sightseeing tour with your own personal guide.

Great Wall of China MapSearch


Save $600 per couple + $300 solo on all of our Small Group, Small Ship and Private Journeys when you book and pay-in-full within 7 days of booking and prior to the final payment date listed in our published terms and conditions.

Family + Friends

Travel is one of  life's most rewarding experiences, perhaps even more so when it's shared with those you love! Take advantage of our Family & Friends offer and Save $100 per person anytime you book 4 or more people on the same A+R program.

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