Kao Gu China

Visit historic sites such as the Mogao and Thousand Buddha Caves on this journey, and explore one of the world's most fascinating cities - Beijing and its Great Wall. Discover the Hanyang Tomb archeological site followed by a visit to the antique renovation room to speak with the resident archaeologist in a one-on-one setting.

Country Information

China Including Tibet

Kao Gu China New Reality

(Countries Visited)

China Including Tibet


(Interest Type(s))

Family Travel


(Tour Length)

12 Days


Tour Highlights

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  • Explore one of the most fascinating cities in the world – Beijing, the heart and soul of politics and society throughout its long history.  Travel to the Mutianyu Section of the Great Wall to stroll ancient promenades, see lovely Shisanling Valley with its Ming Tombs and legendary Sacred Walk of Statues
  • At Hanyang Tomb, you have the unique opportunity to visit the archeological site followed by a visit of the antique renovation room where you speak with the resident archaeologist in a one-on-one setting
  • Marvel at Terra Cotta Warriors and Horses of Xian, where you see some of the most significant archaeological excavations of the 20th century
  • Journey to Dunhuang, a city located in northwestern China along the Silk Road, where you will encounter the Mogao Caves, also known as the Thousand Buddha Caves, housing some 495 temples.  Enjoy a specially arranged visit to two caves that are closed to the public
  • Spend time in the ancient cities of Chengdu, Jinsha and Sanxingdui, with sites that date back 4,000 years to the pre-historical Bronze Age

 

Day 1:  Arrive Beijing, China
As the capital of the People's Republic of China, Beijing is the nation's political, economic, cultural and educational center as well as being the China's most important center for international trade and communications.  It has been the heart and soul of politics and society throughout its long history and consequently there is an unparalleled wealth of discovery to delight and intrigue travelers as they explore Beijing's ancient past and enjoy its exciting modern development.  Upon arrival in Beijing, you will be met and transferred to your hotel.  The remainder of the day is at your leisure.  Legendale Hotel Beijing – Deluxe Room

Day 2:  Beijing
Today you will have a full day to discover Beijing.  You and your guide walk through Tiananmen Square, an enormous open plaza said to be able to hold a million people.  Then, your car transfers you to the Forbidden City’s Five Phoenix Tower.  Enjoy VIP access to Chonghua Palace, which is not open to the general public.  This palace was built by the Yongzheng emperor in honor of his heir Qianlong, who used the Palace as a haven to write poetry and hold tea banquets every New Year’s Day.  (Please note that visits to Chonghua Palace are subject to weather to protect the Palace’s golden bricks on the floor during rain or snow.)  Visit the Empress Dowager’s extravagant Summer Palace on serene Kunming Lake.  Depending on weather, you take a boat ride on Kunming Lake.  Lunch will be served at a local restaurant.  Legendale Hotel Beijing – Deluxe Room (B,L)

Day 3:  Beijing – The Great Wall of China
One of the most unforgettable experiences is a walk on the Great Wall of China.  You visit the Mutianyu Section of the Wall where a cable car takes you up to the Wall.  Stroll ancient promenades and photograph the wall rising and falling over impossibly steep mountain ridges far in the distance. Then, see lovely Shisanling Valley, Ming Tombs and the legendary Sacred Walk of Statues.  Legendale Hotel Beijing – Deluxe Room (B,L)

Day 4:  Beijing / Xian
Fly from Beijing to the arid plains of Xian, gateway to the ancient Silk Road that once linked China with lands as far away as Rome and Istanbul.  The capital for 11 dynasties, Xian exemplifies the extraordinary continuity of Chinese civilization.  Your private guide takes you to Hanyang Tomb, where you have the unique opportunity to visit the archaeological site followed by a visit of the antique renovation room where you speak with the resident archaeologist and ask questions in a one-on-one setting.  After your visit, you will be transferred into the city and your hotel.  This evening you will join a local family and learn how to make dumplings at their home.  Hotel Sofitel Xian on Renmin Square – Superior Room (B,D)

Day 5:  Xian
Today’s full-day tour explores Xian.  The first stop is Forest of Stone Tablets Museum, home to more than 3,000 stone tablets over 900 years old – ancient masterpieces of Chinese calligraphy.  Then you visit the small Wild Goose Pagoda with the Xian City Museum.  Enjoy a once-in-a-lifetime tour of a private room in the museum.  Dine at a local restaurant for lunch.  This afternoon, you visit the City Wall and Muslim area in Xian.  This evening, discover the city on your own.  Hotel Sofitel Xian on Renmin Square – Superior Room (B,L)

Day 6:  Xian
You have another full-day touring in the Xian area.  You will first visit the Provincial Museum.  In Xi'an's southern suburb, the Shaanxi Provincial History Museum is a striking Tang-Dynasty-style pavilion, houses a large collection of 113,000 historic and cultural artifacts unearthed in Shaanxi.  After lunch at Lao Xi An Restaurant, you are transferred to Lin Tong county, where the famed Terra Cotta Warriors and Horses are located.  This is among the most significant archaeological excavations of the 20th century, and excavations continue at this UNESCO World Cultural Heritage Site.  A group of peasants uncovered some pottery while digging for a well near the royal tomb in 1974.  It caught the attention of archaeologists immediately, who came to Xian in droves to study and to extend the digs.  They had established beyond doubt that these artifacts were associated with the Qin Dynasty (211-206 BC).  The State Council authorized the construction of a museum on site in 1975.  Since then, countless visitors have visited Xian and the Museum of Qin Terra Cotta Warriors and Horses.  These life-size figures of terracotta were arranged in battle formations.  They represented what the imperial guard should look like in those days of pomp and vigor.  The museum covers an area of 16,300 square meters, divided into three sections:  No. 1 Pit, No. 2 Pit, and No. 3 Pit respectively.  They were tagged in the order of their discoveries.  No. 1 Pit is the largest, first opened to the public on China's National Day, 1979.  There are columns of soldiers at the front, followed by war chariots at the back.  No. 2 Pit, found in 1976, is 20 meters northeast of No. 1 Pit.  It contained over a thousand warriors and 90 chariots of wood.  It was unveiled to the public in 1994.  Archaeologists came upon No. 3 Pit also in 1976, 25 meters northwest of No. 1 Pit.  It looked like to be the command center of the armed forces.  It went on display in 1989, with 68 warriors, a war chariot and four horses. Altogether over 7,000 pottery soldiers, horses, chariots, and even weapons have been unearthed from these pits.  Most of them have been restored to their former grandeur.  This evening enjoy the famous Tang Dynasty Show & Dinner.  Hotel Sofitel Xian on Renmin Square - Superior Room (B,L,D)

Day 7:  Xian / Dunhuang
This morning, you fly to Dunhuang.  Upon arrival, you are escorted to your hotel.  You have the remainder of the day at leisure.  Dunhuang is a city located in northwestern China and has been a major city along the Silk Road.  It was once called “Shachou,” city of sands.  It is situated in a rich oasis with nearby Singing Sand Dune and Moon Crescent Lake.  It commands a strategic position at the crossroads of the ancient Southern Silk Route and the main road leading from India via Lhasa to Mongolia and Southern Siberia.  It also controlled the entrance to the narrow Gansu Corridor, which led straight to the heart of the northern Chinese plains and the ancient capitals of Chang'an and Luoyang.  Dunhuang Silk Road Hotel – View Room (B,D)

Day 8:  Dunhuang
The Mogao Caves are the highlight of any trip to Dunhuang.  They are also known as the Thousand Buddha Caves, with 495 temples occupying 15.5 miles southeast from center of Dunhuang.  The caves contain some of the best examples of Buddhist art spanning a period of 1,000 years.  Today’s full-day tour to the Mogao Caves include a specially arranged visit to two caves closed to the public.  Cave #45 has beautiful sculptures from the Tang Dynasty.  It was regarded as the most beautiful sculpture among all the caves.  On the left side of the cave depicts Guanyin Buddha learning the Sutra, and the right side features Budda learning the other sutras.  The second cave, Cave #57, contains the most beautiful lady Buddha Fresco.  After lunch inside the Mogao Grottoes Museum’s restaurant, transfer back to the city and visit the Singing Sand Dune and Moon Crescent Lake.  Here you have the opportunity to ride a camel on the sand dunes.  Dunhuang Silk Road Hotel – View Room (B,L,D)

Day 9:  Dunhuang / Chengdu
After a leisurely breakfast, you will fly to Chengdu, one of the most important economic centers, transportation and communication hubs in Western China.  More than 4,000 years ago, the pre-historical Bronze Age culture of Jinsha established itself in this region.  The fertile Chengdu Plain is called Tianfuzhi guo, "the country of heaven," or "the land of abundance."  It was recently named China's 4th-most livable city by China Daily.  Upon arrival you will be met and taken on a visit of the Panda Breeding Center before going to your hotel.  Crowne Plaza Hotel Chengdu – Superior Room (B)

Day 10:  Chengdu – Jinsha & Sanxingdui
This morning’s focus is the Jinsha Museum, located about 50 kilometers from Sanxingdui.  This site of the Jinsha Museum flourished around 1,000 BC and shares similarities in burial objects with the Sanxingdui site.  Ivory, jade, bronze, gold and carved stone artifacts have been found at the site.  Unlike the site at Sanxingdui, Jinsha did not have a city wall.  After lunch in a local restaurant you will drive to Guanghan County to visit the Sanxingdui Musuem.  Explore the museum accompanied by one of the archaeologists who discovered the Sanxingdui Site.  (If the archaeologist is not available, we will arrange for a Museum guide to accompany you).  Return to Chengdu where the remainder of the evening is at leisure.  Crowne Plaza Hotel Chengdu – Superior Room (B,L)

Day 11:  Chengdu
Today, savor a full-day tour of Chengdu.  Highlights will include Marquis Wu’s Shrine and the Dufu Monastery.  After lunch at a local Sichuan restaurant, enjoy a very leisurely evening at a local tea house with a cup of tea.  Crowne Plaza Hotel Chengdu – Superior Room (B,L)

Day 12:  Chengdu / Depart
Transfer to the airport for your departing flight.  (B)

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