Starting Point of the Maritime Silk Road
3-Day Quanzhou Tour with Anxi Oolong Tea Experience
Starting from the southeast coast of China and ending in East Africa and Europe, the Maritime Silk Road was a sea route enabling economic and cultural exchange between medieval China and the rest of the world.
It took its initial shape in the Qin and Han dynasties (221 BC – 220 AD), flourished in the Tang and Song dynasties (618–1279), and reached its heyday in the Yuan Dynasty (1279–1368).
Quanzhou was designated as the starting point of the Maritime Silk Road by UNESCO in 1991. It was the largest oriental port in the middle ages. Marco Polo called Quanzhou's port "one of the two greatest havens in the world for commerce" and "the Alexandria of the East".
Our 3-day trip to Quanzhou and Anxi will enable you to learn about the splendid history of the Maritime Silk Road and the adventurous spirit of mankind in conquering the sea, experience traditional Minnan (southern Fujian) culture, and enjoy the special Fujian flavors, which include the original and best oolong tea.
Tour 'Wow' Points
Witness an oceangoing vessel of the Song Dynasty (960-1279) unearthed in Quanzhou
Visit Quanzhou Overseas Communication Museum to see the medieval ocean vessel and learn about its unique Chinese watertight compartment technology. Appreciate technologies of shipbuilding and navigation that reached the most advanced level in the world in China in the Middle Ages.
Listen to the Stories of the Ancient Maritime Silk Road
Explore Quanzhou's historical and cultural relics, many over a thousand years old, to learn about a splendid oceanside civilization that witnessed huge cultural exchanges between countries and continents.
Experience the Unique Minnan (Southern Fujian) Folk Culture
Visit two different local fishing villages to learn about the stories of Xunpu women, who have amazing "garden" hairdos, and the industrious Hui'an women, who have eye-catching clothes, as well as their unique traditions.
Explore an Exclusive Tea Farm and Taste the Best Oolong Tea
Visit the hometown of oolong tea — Anxi, which boasts the cultivation of more than 60 superior varieties of oolong tea, with Tieguanyin tea top among them. Spring and fall are the best seasons to take this experience.
Have a Bite of Quanzhou — a True Taste of Minnan
Quanzhou has been selected as a 'famous Chinese gourmet city'. With fresh materials, a delicious and light taste, and rich nutrition, Quanzhou food is rated as the real taste of China by the "A Bite of China" TV series.
Discover real reviews of Highlights Travel Family's best-rated service across trusted platforms.
First Trip to China
Ethan has been my tour guide for my four day trip to Beijing. He has been knowledgeable, polite, and most helpful. I was uncomfortable coming to China for the first time without speaking any Chinese at all. Ethan gave the tours, arranged for shows and literally took me to my seats. He also accompanied me to the train station to help figure my was around and help me find the correct train and car. I would definitely use China Highlights again in the future.more
Jan 2024, Megan Sandbothe
Beijing trip with Birthday surprise
Had a great time in Beijing with Bruce. On arrival he surprised me with a cake for my 30th Birthday which was a special touch. We toured the Great wall, Forbidden City and the Temple of Heaven as well as a few other items. Bruce was really knowledgeable (especially about the symbolism in the Temple of Heaven). He also coordinated gaining entry quickly and moving between locations efficiently. Highly recommend.more
Jan 2024, Sherpa325441
Making Family Memories in China
Our Beijing guide Mark was fantastic! He is so knowledgeable about the history of each place we visited and he was very helpful in getting us to hotels, train stations, restaurants, excursions, etc. He took away all of the travel-related stress that can come with a big trip and we are so thankful to him and China Highlights! My parents are hard to please and they also have been very happy with the hotels and unique activities.more
Jan 2024, rosequarose
Beijing dicembre 2023
Siamo stati 3 giorni a Beijing e grazie a Franco siamo riusciti a vedere e apprezzare questa magnifica città. Lui è sempre stato disponibilissimo, pronto ad aiutarci per ogni nostra necessità. Essendo difficile trovare persone che parlano Inglese ci ha spiegato anche come farci intendere senza problemi. Sempre molto premuroso, attento e preparato. Ci ha spiegato perfettamente tutte le peculiarità della città e ci ha fatto assaggiare ogni giorno piatti nuovi per apprezzare la cucina cinese.more
Jan 2024, Michele Azzoni
Terry the best!
I had an awesome time in Beijing, Terry is the best not only guided us, it felt like I was being invited for a trip for an old family member, he was so caring for our needs as a big family group, learned our habits, likes and dislikes on the first day and accommodated us. I strongly recommend taking the tour with him, you will not regret itmore
Jan 2024, HugoA@732hugoa
Greatest Asian Experience
China Highlights organized the trip of a life time for my family with teens, from Japan, through Thailand to China. They were flexible and accommodating of our preferences, fast to react when there was a glitch, passionate and knowledgeable of everything we were seeing.All local guides, from Lena in Tokyo, Denis in Kyoto, Tom in Bangkok, Kai in Phuket, Martin in Hong Kong, William in Guilin, Linda in Zhangjiajie, to Jessie in Beijing, did their best to make sure everything went smoothly and to adjust to my teens' additional requests.more
Jan 2024, Gadjanov Dian
Viagem dos sonhos com nosso guia Terry
Servi?o impecável! Me baseei nas avalia??es e n?o me arrependi. Transporte pontual e responsável. Todo o processo de compra muito bem conduzido. Muito bem planejado. Perfeito do início ao fim. Por fim, o mais importante: o nosso guia Terry. Absolutamente perfeito. O tempo todo preocupado com o nosso bem estar. Cuidou de tudo, se preocupou com tudo. Talvez o guia mais atencioso q já vimos em nossas viagens, principalmente cuidando da crian?a pequena que nos acompanhava. ele nos proporcionou uma experiência inesquecível. Quem for comprar, n?o hesite, pois foi um sonho de viagem, gra?as a eles.more
Jan 2024, Mr s@k89Rsmrs
Best of the Best
We visited Beijing with guide Mark, Xi’an with Jenny, Guilin with Frank, and Shanghai with guide Kris. Each guide was so unique but they all had in common a passion for their city and a true kindness. They were early for all of the airport and train station pickups and helped us so much checking into hotels and flights. We tried so many different foods special to each region and appreciated the great recommendations from the guides. The activities we did were a combination of “must-see” sites like the Great Wall, Forbidden Palace, Teracotta soldiers, and participating in local arts like shadow puppetry, fan making, and seeing cultural shows.more
Jan 2024, Rose A
Ski trip to Thaiwoo Ski resort & Beijing Tour
Our Beijing Tour guide Terry, who is very experience and able to explain the history of China. We went to forbidden city, Tiananmen and hutong walking area and took us to a very delicious dumpling restaurant. His English is perfect and very kind to kids also.The trip went smoothly and everything was very well organized, good communications. kids had a lot of fun. Highly recommended for China Highlight when travel to China , Terry - Beijing Tour & Ryo at Thaiwoo ski resortmore
Jan 2024, Explorer00356257314
Bejing for 3 days
We spent 3 days in Beijing and our guide, Ethan, was immediately courteous, punctual and full of advice on Chinese customs and habits. When it came to telling us the history of places and monuments, he always gave complete and exhaustive explanations.more
Jan 2024, Matteo Giudici Turati
3 GG a Pechino
Abbiamo visitato con lui e il driver (ottimo anche lui), la città proibita,il tempio del paradiso, piazza tiennamen e la grande muraglia......stra consiglio Ethan come guida.more
Jan 2024, Matgiu
Great experience in cold Beijing
Bruce was excellent in taking us around Beijing. He was very knowledgeable with the history and the details of each attraction. He knew all the ins and outs and didn’t have to queue where everyone had to. He was also patient with us being a bit older and less than fit especially going up the Great Wall. I would highly recommend Bruce to anyone who wants to do a private tour.more
Dec 2023, sgwelly
Ethan was amazing! He showed us all the detailed attraction and gave us all the useful information and also suggest us places to go. He was really supportive and make our trip unforgettable!more
Dec 2023, Alessandra
First private tour with China Highlights.
The tour guides were all knowledgeable and efficient in taking guiding us through many remarkable historical or natural sites.more
Dec 2023, Catherine W
Terry is the best Tour Guide
Our tour guide Terry was absolutely fantastic. His attitude was amazing, he was very patient with us and the best thing he gave us was his wealth of knowledge when it came Chinese History. This knowledge is exactly why we wanted to visit China and through his words we found it very easy to immerse ourselves in the beautiful architecture and scenery we found ourselves in.more
Dec 2023, sajjads@680sajjads
Best tour experience!
We booked a tour with Terry for the forbidden city, Tiananmen Square and the Great Wall of China. Terry went above and beyond in providing us with an amazing experience. He spoke fluent English and educated us on the history of the places we visited and answered every question we could think of. He was extremely helpful and friendly and made an amazing trip even more enjoyable.more
Dec 2023, 598ishamams
4 days in Beijing
Jack was welcoming and warm when we arrived at Beijing airport tired late at night. He was diligent and hardworking taking us around the many historical landmarks in Beijing. Whilst it is cold in winter (and we caught the first snow!), it was very enjoyable visiting Mutianyu because there were no crowds.more
Dec 2023, Catherine Wong
Great places, great food
We visited the Great Wall, The Southern Gong Lane, the Forbidden City, the Temple of Heaven and the Summer Palace. Amazing places. Our guide, Jeffrey was excellent. The driver was also helpful. The selected halal restaurants are so good with lots of delicious meals to choose.more
Dec 2023, Farid S
Had an awesome trip with Helen as our tour guide in Beijing and Tianjin. She is such a warm personality and highly motivated guide (recommendable!). Also appreciate the little Christmas gift that she gave to us.more
Dec 2023, Ang
5-star experience in Beijing
Kitty spoke good English and was very knowledgeable. She provided great insights on the places we visited and went the extra mile to help us with our requests on shopping, massages and even to arrange a last minute acrobat show.Both Kitty and Mr Ho were very accommodating to the changes we made in our itinerary during the trip, and Kitty was very caring - she gave me a scarf as I had forgotten to bring mine, and even bought me medication when I was feeling under the weather.more
Dec 2023, sharon
Itinerary Quick Look
Here is a suggested itinerary. We are happy to customize a tour according to your interests.
We'll pick you up in downtown Xiamen and travel to Anxi County — China's 'tea capital' in about 2 hours.
Visit an exclusive tea farm, learn about the process of making Tieguanyin tea — the best oolong tea,make real Tieguanyin tea with your own hands in a hundred-year-old house, talk with local tea farmers, and have lunch in their home.
Then we travel to Quanzhou City in about one and a half hours, where we'll hunt for delicious Quanzhou food in West Street in the late afternoon, and stay overnight in Quanzhou.
Visit Quanzhou Overseas Transportation History Museum to learn about the glorious ocean culture of the city.
At Kaiyuan Temple and Qingjing Mosque witness the cultural exchange between China and other Asian countries.
Appreciate the exquisite art of oyster shell houses and Xunpu women's elaborate hairdos in Xunpu Fishing Village. Xunpu was part of the Maritime Silk Road in ancient times.
Visit Luoyang Bridge — China's earliest stone bridge built in the seaport. It's construction stimulated the flourishing of Maritime Silk Road trade in Quanzhou. Stay overnight in Quanzhou.
In the morning, visit Chongwu Ancient Town, which is "the most intact" seaside granite town still preserved in China.
Then explore Hui'an Dazha Fishing Village, which is the birthplace and home to the famous Hui'an women. 'Covered head, exposed belly; thrifty shirt, wasteful trousers' — this pithy saying sums up the special dress of Hui'an women and their hard-working and virtuous morality. You will have a chance to wear their traditional clothes and take pictures.
We can transfer you to a Quanzhou Railway Station or Quanzhou Jinjiang International Airport for your departure, or even back to downtown Xiamen. The choice is yours.
—the Icing on the Cake
Boutique hotels are recommended to enrich your travel experience.
- 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
Tour code: qz-1