The Classic China, Tibet & Three Gorges Tour

A More than 18 day trip to China 
4.73 out of 5 stars
143 reviews

This tour is ideal for the person who wants to see the main sites in China, Beijing, Xi'an, Guilin, Shanghai, Tibet and the Yangtze River. You can enjoy the Great Wall, Forbidden City, Terra Cotta Soldiers, the Potala Palace, the fantasy-shaped mountains of Guilin, the Bund, Jade Buddha Temple and much, much more! This tour includes several fascinating events and sites that Westerners rarely see.

Customize This Trip For Me
Most tours are customized for private travel.

General Information

Detailed Itinerary

Departure Dates 

Dates are flexible and customizable for private departures.

Detailed Itinerary 

Day 1 Beijing
You will leave the US for China. The adventure begins!

Day 2 Beijing
We will arrive in Beijing in the early evening and then transfer to the hotel.

Day 3 Beijing
We will take you to Tiananmen Square and then to the Forbidden City. In addition to seeing the buildings and grounds of the Emperor's palace, we will also take you to Emperor QingLong's private painting collection and the Emperor's clock collection (which Westerners rarely see). After lunch you will go to the Yong He Gong Lama Temple- This is one of the few Tibetan Buddhist sites in Beijing. It has some very interesting exhibits in the buildings as well as being a practicing Buddhist Temple. This might provide some interesting comparisons to the sights you will see in Tibet.

Day 4 Beijing
Today we will take you to the Ming Tombs, including both entering one of the tombs and walking the Sacred Way. After lunch we will go onto the incredible Great Wall of China (at Badaling). It is an incredible feeling to be standing on one of the Seven Wonders of the World, which is over 3,900 miles in length! We will then transfer you back to the hotel.

Day 5 Xi'an
You will experience the Temple of Heaven, which is the site where the Emperor would pray and commune with the gods. After lunch we will take you on a tour of a Hutong. This is the traditional housing in old Beijing that was generally four small houses surrounding a court area. After the Hutong, you will go to the airport to fly to Xi'an and your guide will transfer you to the hotel.

Day 6 Xi'an
The morning begins with a tour of the city, including the old city wall and the Wild Goose Pagoda, with its Drum Tower and Bell Tower. After lunch we will take you to the World-Class Shangxi Provincial Museum which chronologically features the dynasties of China in order through artifacts, brassware and other cultural displays. Dinner: A Dim Sum Restaurant

Day 7 Chengdu
Today we will take you to what has been called the "8th Wonder of the World" the Terra Cotta Soldiers Museum. We will then take you for the flight to Chengdu. Upon arriving in Chengdu we will take you to a wonderful Sichuan restaurant where you can enjoy the delicious Sichuan cuisine! Transfer back to the hotel for a good night's sleep.

Day 8 Lhasa
Early in the morning we will transfer you to the airport for your flight to Lhasa, Tibet. We will pick you up at the airport and transfer you to the hotel, with a bus tour of the area between the airport and the city. We will then check you into your hotel.

Day 9 Lhasa
Today we will take you to the Jokhang Temple, Bharkhuo Street and the Tibetan Quarter of the town. Dinner at the Crazy Yak Restaurant.

Day 10 Lhasa
We will visit the incredible Potala Palace in the morning. It was the government headquarters, the center of the religion and the residence of the Dali Lamas all in one. After lunch we will take you to the Sera Monastery and if we are fortunate, we can see the Monks "debate."

Day 11 Lhasa
Today we will drive out into the Tibetan countryside via the beginning of the Friendship Road, visit a Tibetan village, see the incredible vistas and have a picnic lunch at the Heavenly Lake. Then we will transfer you back to the hotel.

Day 12 Chongqing
After a good breakfast you will transfer to the airport for a flight to Chongqing (via Chengdu). After a brief city tour and dinner you will be transferred to the East King Cruise Ship (which along with its sister ship, the East Queen, is the finest cruise line on the Yangtze River). The ship leaves the harbor around 11:30pm. CHONGQING: The ancient city which we called Chunking, the usual western starting point of the Yangtze River Cruise.

Days 13-14
Yangtze River The Yangtze River Cruise continues (Three Gorges, Shendong stream, beautiful scenery).

Day 15 Wuhan
The cruise ship arrives at Yichang early in the morning. We will be greeted by our local guide and transferred to the Wuhan. Along the way we will stop at the ancient city wall of Jinshou and the provincial museum. Then we will take you to the hotel at Wuhan.

Day 16 Guilin
We will take you to the airport for a flight to Guilin. Your guide will pick you up at the Guilin airport and transfer you to your hotel. After you have settled in, we will take you on a brief city tour, including Fubo Hill and Elephant Hill park. Then you will go to the Reed Flute Caves. Evening option: The Minorities Concerts- This is a delightful display of the costumes, dances, acrobatics and other entertainments from 21 Chinese minorities.

Day 17 Shanghai
We will take you on the 3 hour Li Jiang River Cruise. This is one of the most beautiful areas in the whole world. The cruise ends at Yangzhou, which is a quaint village with a very nice street market. After you have shopped there and walked along the quaint streets to your contentment, we will transfer you to the airport for a flight to Shanghai. Your local guide in Shanghai will take you to your hotel.

Day 18 Shanghai
We will start the day with a tour of the Bund and the TV Tower. After lunch, you will go to the wonderful Shanghai Art Museum which has many excellent exhibits, including ancient brass works, coins (including the knife-coins) and the Minority Costumes and Artifacts.

Day 19 Shanghai
You will visit the Jade Buddha Temple and the Jade Factory. Lunch will be at the Mongolian Barbeque. Afterwards we will take you to the private Lotus Shoe Museum. These 3-5 inch women's shoes display the incredible embroidery that was exhibited in these shoes.

Day 20 Shanghai
The morning is free. After lunch we will take you to the airport for your return flight to the USA with a lifetime of wonderful memories.

Business Class Upgrade on international flights available for excellent rates

Note: Other departure cities can be substituted or connection flights included for a reasonable fee.


Starting Price 

This trip is customizable for your private travel.

What's Included 

  • Accommodations
  • In-country transportation
  • Some or all guided tours and activities (dependent on season)
  • Expert trip planning
  • 24x7 support during your trip
The starting price is based on travel during the low season for a minimum of two travelers staying in shared 3-star accommodations. Please inquire for a custom trip quote based on your travel preferences and travel dates.