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11-Day Family Happiness

Family Happiness

11-Day Beijing–Xi'an–Guilin/Yangshuo-Shanghai private tour plan

Day 1-3 Beijing- The Forbidden City, Toboggan on Great Wall
 
Day 4-5 Xi'an- The Terracotta Army, Make a Mini Terracotta Warrior
 
Day 6-8 Guilin/Yangshuo- Li River Cruise, Farming Experience
 
Day 9-10 Shanghai-Modern Skyline, Ancient Garden 
 

A journey to China is truly an adventure, bejeweled by this ancient oriental kingdom's history, cultures, lifestyles, and landscapes. We will help you spend quality time with your children, and help you all to discover more while experiencing China in a fun way. This 11-Day China Family Tour will let you have a time travel into the history and also plunge to the future. It includes exclusive and family-friendly activities and hotels.

The detailed itinerary below is just for inspiration. Every day can be and should be tailor-made, as your family vacation deserves to be unique. You can read our tips for tailor-making your tour to help you start, and talk to your 1-to-1 travel advisor to personalize your journey.

Tour 'Wow' Points

Discover the Mythical Animals in the Forbidden City

Explore the Forbidden City in a way that's specially designed for families with kids.

a family in the Fobidden City
children touching the yellow and green tiles on the wall

Walk on the Great Wall and Slide Down from It

Visit a less-crowded Great Wall section at Mutianyu and try an exciting toboggan ride.

walking on the Great Wall
enjoy the toboggan ride

Be Like an Imperial-Era Chinese Child in the Hutongs

Learn Chinese calligraphy when you visit a local family living in a traditional hutong district. Play with a Chinese yo-yo made of wood or bamboo in the courtyard. Taste a popular snack loved by hutong children.

Chinese calligraphy learning
candy painting

Practice a Family Morning Excercise in the Temple of Heaven

Feel the relaxing lifestyle of the local people and learn doing Tai Chi at the Temple of Heaven where the emperors prayed for good harvests.

the red wall of the Temple of Heaven
a morning excercise at the Temple of Heaven

Make Your Own Terracotta Warriors in A Local People's Cave Dwelling

Not only visit the Terracotta Warriors Horses Museum to see the life-sized Terracotta Army, but olso make a mini one by yourself.

Terracotta Warriors
make a warriors

Be Invited by a Local Chinese Family and Learn to Make Dumpling

Step into a local family's apartment. Have a glimpse of their life and make dumplings and enjoy a home-cooked meal together.

make dumpling
dumplings

Bike around the Picturesque Countryside

Enjoy a bike ride to see the rice paddies and the peaceful village. How great these activity are to interact with the mountains and water.

biking in the countryside
have a bike ride along the green fields

Experience Farming and Making Snack with Local People

Rural life in China could be more interesting than what you might expect. Learning to make popular local dessert, helping local people pick vegetables, or ploughing a paddy could be a great travel memory.

make a raft near the river
rock climbing

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Suggested Itinerary

Here is a suggested itinerary. We are happy to customize a tour according to your interests.

Day 1Beijing | Arrival

When you arrive in Beijing, your local tour guide, driver, and a well-maintained private van will be waiting for you.

Your guide will assist you with your luggage and help you to check in at your hotel for a worry-free start to your stay.

Hotel options:
Novotel Beijing Peace (4-star)
Crowne Plaza Beijing Chaoyang U-Town (5-star)

Day 2Beijing | Historical Marvels and Local Artist
breakfast & lunch

Proudly the largest world-famous square, Tian'anmen Square has witnessed numerous historical events and is also in front of the Forbidden City.

Walk northward from the square to enter the renowned Forbidden City. Besides the main palaces on the axis, you will also explore some places that are not on the touristy route and interest kids more. These include the library of the princes, the Archery Pavilion (the tools of the army gallery), and the Hall of Clocks and Watches. Travel back in time in the imperial garden by playing a game where you find the places where famous figures have previously been.

In the afternoon, explore the hutongs - the narrow alleys between rows of quadrangle dwellings. Pay a visit to a local family who lives in a traditional and original quadrangle dwelling. There, you can try your hand at Chinese calligraphy. Learn to write the Chinese characters that mean 'family' or 'good luck'.

Tips to Tailor-Make Your Tour

If you are traveling in summer (June to October), the Water Cube Water Park has many water slides and is highly recommended for water-loving kids.

the family visit the Forbidden CityExplore the Forbidden City
Day 3Beijing | The Great Wall
breakfast & lunch

How long is the Great Wall? If only we got a nickel for every time we were asked this question… Once you step on this man-made wonder, a sense of wonder eclipses the statistics.

After a Tai Chi class and a visit to the Temple of Heaven and lunch, your day will be dedicated to the Great Wall. The Mutianyu section is an all-time favorite because of its close distance to Beijing, top ranking on TripAdvisor, and easy accessibility. Usually, we recommend families to take a chair lift up and take a toboggan back down so the children can have more fun, but we can also arrange a round-trip cable car depending on your preferences.

Tips to Tailor-Make Your Tour

For a unique experience, a visit to Simatai, the only Great Wall section that's lit up and open at night, is highly recommended.

If your family love hiking, we can arrange a 2-hour, 4-hour, or even multi-day wild Great Wall hiking experience for you.

The Great WallThe Great Wall
Day 4Beijing to Xi'an | The Summer Palace and High-Speed Train
breakfast & lunch

The Summer Palace, as indicated by its name, provided the royal court with cool surroundings thanks to its lush gardens, beautiful pavilions and theaters, and a big lake for boat trips. Make this morning a leisurely outing before you leave for Xi'an.

It is 1,075 kilometers (668 miles) between Beijing and Xi'an and a bullet train journey cuts the commute from 15 hours down to 6 hours. Get on and enjoy the speedy yet steady journey. A private car and friendly guide will escort you to your hotel in Xi'an.

Hotel options:
West Capital International Hotel (4-star)
Wyndham Grand Xi'an South (5-star)

The High-speed TrainThe High-speed Train
Day 5Xi'an | The Terracotta Army
breakfast & lunch

Charged up for the day, you will kick start it with a biking experience on the ancient city wall in Xi'an. This aged and renovated defense project surrounded Xi'an during its days as ancient China's capital for several centuries.

Drive out of town to the massive site of the Terracotta Army. Most of emperors throughout history devoted their lives and money in pursuit of eternal life — Emperor Qin Shi Huang was no exception. As his funeral objects, this grand array of life-size horses, chariots, cavalries, infantries, and weapons displays the tip of the iceberg of his ambition for immortal life and power.

Did you know that all the terracotta warriors were originally colored? The old paint has faded with time yet the craftsmanship still shines. You will try to make your own terracotta warrior inside a traditional cave dwelling.

The Terra Cotta WarriorsThe Terra Cotta Warriors
Day 6Xi'an to Guilin | Ancient Pagoda and Museum
breakfast & lunch

Pay a visit to the starting point of the Silk Road: the Big Wild Goose Pagoda. Then visit Shaanxi History Museum to appreciate thousands of cultural relics and learn about the splendid history of Xi'an and its important role in Chinese history.

Fly southbound to Guilin. Transfer to your hotel and rest in the afternoon.

Hotel options:
Lijiang Waterfall Hotel (4-star)
Shangri-La Guilin (5-star)

the big goose pagodaThe Big Goose Pagoda
Day 7Guilin | Reed Flute Cave and Handicraft Experience
breakfast & lunch

No matter whether you are a geology fan or not, you are still bound to be amazed by Guilin's spectacular karst features as you step into Reed Flute Cave. Although lights were only added to this site some decades ago, a fascinating fact is that it has been Guilin's most-visited attraction for over 1,200 years.

Pull yourself back to reality and, after lunch, learn the art of embellishing a Chinese landscape painting with pebbles from the Li River. Then you will visit the ancient town of Daxu. Daxu used to be the primary port back in the glorious days when Guilin was Guangxi's provincial capital. Those days are long gone yet Uncle Chow might still have some interesting stories to tell you.

Tips to Tailor-Make Your Tour

If your family is interested in learning Chinese, we can arrange a 1 to 2-hour private session for you to catch up with some of the daily expressions.

Chinese brush painting is also a good option when considering how to spend your afternoon.

Chinese landscape painting with Li River pebblesChinese landscape painting with Li River pebbles
Day 8Guilin to Yangshuo | Li River Cruise and Farming Experience
breakfast & lunch

The beautiful Li River has inspired many poets and artists. We have arranged a 4-hour cruise trip for you to discover the source of their inspiration. You will reach Yangshuo in the early afternoon.

After checking in at your hotel, meet a local family in Gaotian village who are busy with their farm work and could use your help. Planting, ploughing, sowing, harvesting, or milling — roll up your sleeves for some experiences that your children might never learn at school. Return to your hotel and kick back by the swimming pool.

Tips to Tailor-Make Your Tour

Don't want to get your hands dirty? We have other options for you: Chinese calligraphy, painting, a cooking class, a tai chi lesson, or rock climbing.

Hotel options:
Yangshuo Mountain Retreat (4-star)
Yangshuo Ancient Garden Boutique Hotel (5-star)

Farming ExperienceFarming Experience
Day 9Yangshuo to Shanghai | Countryside Biking
breakfast & lunch

Yangshuo is the place that finally slows you down. Escape from the cities and be with your family in beautiful surroundings. Peddle through lush fields, humble villages, and bustling local markets — a cycling trip creates precious family moments.

You will be taken back to Guilin for your flight to Shanghai. Transfer to your hotel and rest for the day.

Tips to Tailor-Make Your Tour

The cycling distance is about 10 to 15 kilometers (7 to 10 miles) and takes 1 to 2 hours. It's suitable for almost all ages and levels of physical fitness.

For families with younger children (up to 10 years old), you may choose between bikes, an electric buggy, or electric bikes, which look like a motor scooter, but are much more environmentally friendly and are only seen in Asia!

Hotel options:
Sunrise On The Bund (4-star)
Les Suites Orient, Bund Shanghai (5-star)

Biking in the countrysideBiking in the countryside
Day 10Shanghai | Shanghai Tower
breakfast & lunch

Visit a classic Chinese garden, the Yu Garden, to appreciate the traditional beauty of Chinese architecture. Walk along the Bund and listen to the stories behind the famous buildings with colonial style. Get to the top floor of the Shanghai Tower to see China's future.

Half-Day Customized Icing-on-the-Cake Experience

After traveling in China for around 10 days, you might want to do something different at the end of your tour. Do you want to have some relaxation time? Do you have any unfulfilled trip wishes? In the magic city of Shanghai, your private guide will make your wishes come true!

Whether you want to relax, experience fashion, appreciate art, explore folk customs, or shop; from having fun in fancy bar to exploring an art center, trying nail beauty, testing your popularity in the marriage market, or just buying some lovely gifts, we will make it happen. Just tell us what you’re interested in.

If you don’t know what you want, just let your guide make the arrangements. You will not be disappointed!

The BundThe Bund
Day 11Shanghai | Departure
breakfast

After we have escorted you to the airport, you will wave goodbye to China.

Thanks for allowing us to create such a wonderful journey and we hope to see you again soon!

Trip Notes

Every element of the tour above can be tailored. Feel free to tell us your ideas and we will be happy to make adjustments for you.

Extend the tour:

  • Luoyang: Add 2–3 days for a Chinese kung fu experience.
  • Chengdu: Add 2–3 days to join a panda keeper program to feed a panda and have your photo taken next to a panda.
  • Hong Kong: Add 2–3 days for Victoria Peak, Hong Kong Disneyland, and a day-tour of Macau.
  • Free days: Yangshuo and Shanghai are popular destinations to add one or more free days to explore on your own.
  • More destinations: Visit Zhangjiajie for its glass bridge, Suzhou for its water towns, and go on a Yangtze River cruise. Inform us of your interests and we will offer you some recommendations.

2. Accommodation

Various types of accommodation are available, including famous 5-star hotel chains, 4-star hotels in the best locations, good value 3-star hotels, or boutique hotels that reflect the style of the region.

Whatever your accommodation preferences are, our travel experts will seek out and find the perfect one for you.

Most hotels in China allow a maximum of three people in one room. If there are more than three people in your group, we will check if there is a family room available or do our best to arrange interconnecting or adjoining rooms.

3. Transportation

China is a huge country so, to make your travel experience more efficient, we usually arrange flights to connect your destinations.

China's high-speed rail network is a fast-paced way to travel. We recommend taking high-speed trains for journeys of less than 6 hours to interested customers — please tell us if you are one of them.

4. Car Seats, Strollers, and Cribs

To maximize the safety of your children, we can arrange for car seats and baby strollers to be provided at your request during the private transfers in big cities.

For infants under 2 years old, we will inform your hotel to arrange a crib for you. No extra cost is needed.

The number of car seats, strollers, and cribs are limited. Please inquire and confirm early to reserve them.

5. Meals

Lunches at popular local restaurants are included for you so you can taste authentic Chinese food. Your guide will assist you with ordering the dishes.

Most families enjoy eating local Chinese food as there is plenty of variety and different flavors. Some children may prefer Western food or have some special requirements for meals.

Western, vegetarian, halal, kosher, Indian, gluten-free… — all dietary requirements can be catered for by our experienced private guides. Let us know if you have any of these dietary requirements during your booking.

Tour Price

FromUS$2,339per adult US$1,849per child (2-11 years old) Based on a private tour for a family of 4 people with 1 child below 12 years old. Price varies depending on program, travel date, number of people and chosen hotel

Price includes:

  • Private air-conditioned business car with big windows and ample space
  • English speaking local guide
  • Activities, hotels, and meals listed in the itinerary
  • 24/7 helpline for while you are traveling

Start planning your tailor-made tour now. Your 1:1 travel consultant will reply within 1 working day.

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The China Highlights Experience

1-to-1 Expert Planning

1-to-1 Expert Planning

Your tour will be tailor-made by your personal travel advisor — a destination expert. Every reply will be within 24 hours.

Personal Journeys

Personal Journeys

Enjoy your personal local guide and ride. Explore destinations at your own pace. Have unparalleled flexibility, which is impossible on a group tour.

Authentic Experiences

Authentic Experiences

Discover the hidden gems. Experience local culture by practicing it. Try new and exciting activities, and unveil the stories behind the sights and people.

Well-Selected Local Guides

Well-Selected Local Guides

Knowledgeable, enthusiastic, and attentive — your personal local guides will share interesting stories, insider information, and even create unexpected highlights!

China Highlights tailor-makes China tours to help travelers discover China their way. We're a passionate team of one hundred avid travelers who love to share our knowledge of China with those looking for a more authentic travel experience, more ...
China Highlights International Travel Service Co., LTD
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