Suzhou Humble Administrator Garden

Arrive in Beijing, Flight not included

Suggested Itinerary
Day 1: Arrive in Beijing, Flight not included

Today's Activities: Airport Transfer (Beijing)

 
Day 2: Beijing: Tiananmen Square, The Forbidden City, Hutong Tour in Xicheng District
Beijing Hutong

Tian'anmen Square is the largest city square in the centre of Beijing, named after the Tiananmen (literally, Gate of Heavenly Peace) which sits to its north, separating it from the Forbidden City. It has great cultural significance as it was the site of several key events in Chinese history. As the world's largest city square and enduring symbol of China's national pride, it is surrounded by many imposing buildings including the Heavenly Gate (entry to the Forbidden City), Museums, government buildings and Chairman Mao's Mausoleum.

The Forbidden City was home to 24 emperors between 1368 and 1911.This "city within a city" is a World Heritage Site, and is the largest and the best preserved ancient imperial architecture complex in the world, with great square, halls and gates contrast with intricate halls, gardens, courtyards and quarters. The exhibitions, both permanent and temporary, are all important treasures of ancient China.

Hutong is a maze of historic alleyways with old single storey traditional courtyard houses, which are now fast disappearing. In this one hour tour, you can hop on a rickshaw to ride through the narrow alleys as well as visit a local family then walk on the Silver Ingot Bridge (Yinding Bridge) and find out about the different thresholds of the courtyards.

 
Day 3: Beijing: The Mutianyu Great Wall, Temple of Heaven
mutianyu section of great wall beijing

The Mutianyu Great Wall is less-crowded section of the Great Wall is a about 2.5 hours' drive from downtown Beijing. A cable car takes you to a good section (avoiding a very steep climb), where you can walk along the wall, through the watch towers and enjoy superb views as it snakes across the hills and mountains. You can return by cable car, walk down or walk along the wall for about an hour to descend by chairlift. Wear good walking shoes and protection from the weather.

Temple of Heaven was Built in 1420 during the Ming Dynasty, Temple of Heaven is a complex of Taoist buildings where emperors of Ming and Qing dynasties visited for annual ceremonies of pray for good harvests. Located in the south of Central Beijing, it covers an area of 273 hectares. Temple of Heaven was enrolled as a World Heritage Site by UNESCO in 1998.

 
Day 4: Beijing to Xi'an flight. Summer Palace with boat Cruise and the Garden of Virtue and Harmony, Exterior visit of Beijing Olympic Stadiums
beijing summer palace

Summer Palace is about 12 kilometers northwest of the city center and is equally as famous as the Forbidden City, the Summer Palace is called 'Yiheyuan'(Garden of Nurtured Harmony) in Chinese. It is the best preserved and the largest imperial gardens in China and one of Beijing's premier attractions. It is also possible to cruise on the lake which takes 10 minutes by the ferry boat.

Located at the north end of the central axis of Beijing City, with a large area of 1215 hectares, Beijing Olympic Stadiums contains National museum, exhibition area, Olympic Village and Olympic competition avenues. Approximately 31 venues are used in Beijing Olympics, including National Stadium, the Bird's Nest and National Aquatics Center. You will explore the park, but it doesn't include going inside the Bird's Nest and Water Cube.

 
Day 5: Xi'an: Terracotta Warriors and Horses, Big Wild Goose Pagoda
big wild goose pagoda in xian

The Terracotta Warriors and Horses was discovered accidentally in 1974. This incredible army of over 7000 soldiers, archers, horses and chariots in full battle array has guarded Emperor Qin's tomb since 210BC. Each figure is unique, and the painstaking repair and excavation continues in 3 pits which are protected inside huge hangars. 1.5 hours from Xian, there is also an excellent museum and film about the history of the vaults. Photos (no flash) are allowed. Wear comfortable walking shoes.

Big Wild Goose Pagoda is a major Buddhist site, the simple, elegant brick Pagoda stands in the grounds of the attractive Da Ci'en Temple. The Pagoda was built in the 7th century to house the Buddhist materials that Xuanzang (Tripitaka) brought back from his epic journey to India. The Temple complex has several large halls with some great Buddhist statues and murals.

 
Day 6: Xi'an to Shanghai flight. Shaanxi History Museum, Xian City Wall with Bicycle, Forest of Stele Museum
xian steles forest museum

The history of Shaanxi is said to be the history of China, and Shaanxi History Museum is quite simply one of the nation's best. Four major galleries in large, Tang-style buildings house a vast and impressive collection, beautifully displayed. Most of the item labels are in English, although some other information on the exhibitions is not, but your guide can help here. Wear comfortable walking shoes.

The walls, ramparts, gates and watchtowers form one of the oldest and most complete city defenses still around. Built in the 13th century on the foundations of the original Tang Forbidden City surrounding the city centre, Xian City Wall is a major landmark, and the best preserved, as well as the oldest and largest of the city defense systems in China. We operate this with bicycle. If the weather is not good for biking on the city wall, we will substitute a visit to the Bell Tower. Your guide will be very glad to take you the Bell Tower after you have been to look at the city wall.

Forest of Steles in Xi'an was originally built in Northern Song Dynasty (1090 A.D.) when a large Confucian collection of steles cut in A.D. 837 - the oldest existing texts of the Confucian classics - was moved to it for safekeeping. All kinds of calligraphy and scripts tell stories, poems and reports from around the Empire. Other exhibits include early sculptures and objects from Imperial tombs.

 
Day 7: Shanghai: Yuyuan Garden, Shanghai Urban Planning Exhibition Hall, The Bund, Jade Buddha Temple, The Shanghai World Financial Center
jade buddha temple shanghai

Yuyuan Garden is located in the center of Shanghai old quarters. It was a private garden built in 1559 during the Ming Dynasty, with typical Chinese classic architecture and style. The complex covers an area of 2 hectares, with rockeries, pavilions, ponds and corridors. Yuyuan Garden is surrounding by a busy market place, where visitors can find everything from popular local snacks, handicrafts, antiques and souvenirs to some famous time-honored restaurants.

The Bund is a 1.5-kilometer-long embankment running along the western bank of Huangpu River. On its west side it is the "architecture gallery" with 52 well-preserved old European style buildings. Once the major trading and commercial center of old Shanghai, the Bund has now taken on new vitality, with futuristic developments, chic restaurants, top end shops and bars offer plenty to see and do-and by night it's magic!

A short walk across Renmin Square from the Shanghai Museum, Shanghai Urban Planning Exhibition Hall is a fascinating insight into Shanghai's future. The 2nd floor has a giant walkaround model of the city, and other floors have great displays, interactive exhibitions and walkthroughs of aspects such as the ports, greening, leisure etc.

Shanghai World Financial Center is located in Pudong District, reaching a height of 492 meters (1,615 feet). It is now a new landmark of prosperous Shanghai. It was the second tallest building in the world when it was completed in 2007. Its observation deck, at 474 meters (1,555 feet) above the ground, is currently the tallest in the world. The multi-function skyscraper consists of hotels, apartments, restaurants, shopping malls, offices and observation decks.

Built in 1918, Jade Buddha Temple is a very popular Buddhist temple among local people. The main treasures are two statues of Buddha imported from Burma by sea. They were carved from rare single blocks of white jade adorned with precious stones. The temple is a hive of activities with monks, worshippers and visitors.

 
Day 8: Shanghai to Suzhou, Train No. D3022/D3023 (Shanghai Hongqiao Railway Station - Suzhou Yuan Railway Station) Dep 08:44 - Arr 09:15; Humble Administrators Garden, The Grand Canal(Cruising by Motor Boat), Rickshaw ride
humble administrator garden in suzhou

Humble Administrators Garden is the best representative of Chinese classical gardens, constructed in the Ming dynasty, which focuses on a central pond with pavilions, terraces, chambers, and towers located nearby, the garden is divided into three parts: the eastern, middle and western parts. At 5 hectares the largest of these beautiful gardens, it is one of the most famous one. It provides everyone with pleasure. Don't miss the Garden Museum - actually don't miss any of these lovely places. Tourists may wear comfortable shoes, as there's a lot of walking here.

The Grand Canal ranks alongside the Great Wall of China as the country's greatest engineering achievement and it is the longest man-made waterway in the world.Cruising on the Canal(about 30-40 minutes), you can see the local peoples' life. Known as the land of rice and fish, Suzhou city has a network of picturesque lakes and canals both large and small, which all link in eventually to the Grand Canal. The view from the little boats that ply the smaller canals is enchanting, whilst the traffic on the Grand Canal reminds you of Suzhou that it was the original source of the 'sea' silk road.

Take a rickshaw ride through the old streets & Hutongs in Suzhou, you will see local people's life.

 
Day 9: Escort from Suzhou to Shanghai; Transfer to Shanghai Airport for Departure Flight; Zhouzhuang Water Town
zhouzhuang ancient water town

Zhouzhuang Water Town is surrounded by water and has many small streams running through the town. Stone bridges and old residences with black tiles and white wells are a feature its charm. Visitors may explore the picturesque narrow canals, little streets, bridges and visit Shen House, Zhang House and eat the local fish or other local delicacies while enjoying the balladeers in the waterside teahouses. We will arrange cruising on the waterways of Zhouzhuang on a wood boat, which is a relaxing experience.

 
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