China is vast, both in terms of its size and its offerings. Its history goes back thousands of years, yet it is one of the world’s most rapidly developing countries. This is a place where you’ll find ancient royal residences sat next to glitzy modern skyscrapers and where suited businessmen and women stride past stalls selling traditional steamed dumplings, the recipes for which have not changed in aeons. In some parts of the country, life goes on in much the same way it has for centuries, while others cities are being built from the ground up to accommodate the explosive population growth. It is this contrast that makes China such a wonderful place to explore.
- Discover the capital, Beijing, an endlessly fascinating city with a wealth of historic sights from the Forbidden City and the Summer Palace to Tiananmen Square, as well as ultra modern architecture, much of which was used during the 2008 Olympic Games.
- Experience the thrill of Shanghai. With its bright lights and epic skyline, it is everything you’d expect from a 21st-century metropolis and provides a great chance to see life in an international but still very Asian city.
- Discover the smaller, but no less fascinating cities of Chengdu, where you can meet its resident pandas, and Xi’an, the home of the Terracotta Warriors.
- Feel dwarfed by the towering karst peaks in Yangshuo, gaze across snow-capped mountains and glistening lakes in Shangri-La and relax in the picturesque villages of Dali, Shaxi and Lijiang.
- Travel through the countryside for a glimpse into the China of days gone by. The lush green rice paddies are an iconic symbol of traditional China as well as being breathtakingly beautiful.
- Explore the Great Wall of China. Stretching for more than 20,000km, it was the world’s largest military structure and built to defend against invasions from the north. Although hugely popular, we can arrange for you to visit virtually empty sections of the wall so you can marvel at this iconic structure in peace.
- Discover Tibet, affectionately known as ‘the roof of the world’. The source of much controversy, Tibet is exceptionally beautiful and home to magnificent monasteries and surrounded by snow-capped mountain peaks.
China has so much to offer and is the kind of place you can come back to time and time again and always discover something new. Yes, it can seem daunting at times, but with expert local guides and insider knowledge, it becomes entirely manageable and utterly magical.