CHINA (BEIJING AND SHANGHAI)
The group meets at OR Tambo international airport from various destinations in South Africa. Your group Leader will greet you with a warm welcome and introduce everyone. You board an overnight flight to Beijing.
Arrive in Beijing in the morning where the shuttle will take the group to the hotel to check in and refresh and rest after the long journey. The Group Leader will suggest nearby restaurants for the travellers to have lunch and stroll around the neighbourhood at leisure.
Today you embark on a private tour of Temple of Heaven, Tiananmen Square, Summer Palace and Forbidden City. You met your guide in the hotel lobby at 8:30 a.m., then depart to the Temple of Heaven. The morning is the best time to visit to catch a glimpse of local senior citizens exercising, practicing Tai Chi, playing Shuttlecock, singing, dancing, or doing ground calligraphy. You continue to Tiananmen Square after an hour walking in the Temple of Heaven.
Tiananmen Square is the largest city centre square in the world. You will stroll through Tiananmen Square to see the Front Gate, Monument to the People’s heroes, Great Hall of the People, and Tiananmen Gate.
You then continue to the Forbidden City, and spend 2 hours exploring the place where the Ming and Qing Emperors resided for more than 500 years.
You will then have lunch in a cosy, non-tourist Peking Roast Duck restaurant.
After lunch, you spend about 1 hour touring Summer Palace, and take a boat ride to see the Qing style buildings on Suzhou Street where eunuchs and concubines were once disguised as merchants so that the emperor could enjoy shopping.
You then drive back to your hotel but on the way you will visit the Olympic Stadiums and stop on a bridge to the south of the Water Cube, which is the best place to photograph the main buildings in the Olympic Village.
Today you visit the Great Wall of China at Badaling and Ming Tombs.
From your Beijing hotel, you will be driven in a comfortable, air-conditioned minivan and get to admire the rural scenery as you escape bustling Beijing. Your first stop is the Great Wall of China, an iconic landmark illustrating the innovation of ancient Chinese engineering. You will venture to the Badaling section of the wall, one of the best-preserved parts of the structure, and listen as your guide provides an engaging narrative about the attraction’s history.
You then climb either the north or south face of the wall to absorb panoramic vistas of the surrounding scenery. After you explore this ancient wonder, you head to the sacred Ming tombs to discover the burial grounds of ancient Ming emperors. Here you will marvel at three of the excavated tombs and hear of the extravagant lives led by the inhabitants. You will then indulge on an authentic Chinese-style lunch before browsing the bespoke shops of the Longdi Jade Factory for special souvenirs.
You depart for Shanghai this morning where the shuttle will take you to the hotel to check in, refresh and rest. The Group Leader will suggest nearby restaurants for you to have lunch and stroll around the neighbourhood at leisure.
In the evening you will embark on a food tour to enjoy authentic local food. As you walk toward the recently restored Xintiandi food area, your guide will provide an introduction to the culinary culture of Shanghai. You will get to sample dumpling soup, spring rolls, candied lotus rice, roasted duck, and many more local specialties.
Today you embark on the best of Shanghai Day Tour, including Jade Buddha Temple and The Bund.
At the Jade Buddha Temple, a Qing dynasty landmark, your guide will brief you on 5,000 years of the history and culture of the fast-paced city. You will learn how traditional handicrafts have been kept alive with a visit to the Fresh Water Pearl Gallery, where one lucky tour-goer even gets a free pearl to take home. You then mingle with locals at People’s Square before perusing 12,000 artefacts at the Shanghai Museum. Then you will enjoy a tasty local lunch before stop at the picturesque Yu (Yuyuan) Garden and stroll along the Bund, Shangai’s legendary waterfront.
This morning will be an opportunity to explore the city on your own with ease using the Shanghai Bus Tour Hop-on Hop-off Premium Ticket, which includes City Top Attraction Admissions.
You have a choice between three routes: the Temple Tour, the Pudong Tour, or the Shanghai City Tour. As you travel, enjoy wraparound views from the open-top deck, and helpful audio commentary available in eight languages. You can hop off to explore at any time, then re-board a new bus when you’re ready to continue.
In the evening, you will enjoy a Farewell Dinner at a local restaurant to toast to your unforgettable week.
You enjoy free morning before your departure. You will be transferred to the airport by a shuttle to catch your evening flights.