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17-day China Ancient Architecture Tour

Tour code: ETC-B71   

The 17-day tour will bring you an eyes-opening experience by introducing traditional Chinese architecture including palaces, homes, temples, and gardens: the characteristic of Chinese traditional architectures, and their historical and cultural backgrounds. During the trip, you have a general idea of infrastructure systems, construction materials, foundations and structural forms of Chinese traditional engineering. At the same time, you will take a close look to those some man-made architectural feats in ancient China like Great Wall, Forbidden City, Earthen Building, etc.

Tour Date City Tour Brief
1 Beijing Arrival in Beijing
2 Beijing
Temple of Heaven, Forbidden City, Jingshan Park, Peking duck
3 Beijing
Mutianyu Great Wall, a pedicab tour to Hutong
4 Beijing / Pinyao
Fast train to Pingyao
5 Pinyao
Qiao Family Compound, Double Forest Temple (Shuangli Si)
6 Pingyao / Xian
Pingyao old town, ancient city wall, Rishengchang Exchange Shop, Ming Qing Street, express train to Xian
7 Xian
Banpo Museum, famous Terra Cotta Warriors and Horses Museum, the old Muslim quarter.
8 Xian / Guilin Small Wild Goose Pagoda and Xian Museum, the Gao’s Grand Courtyard, fly to Guilin
9 Guilin / Yangshuo  Li River cruise, disembark at Yangshuo, Jiuxian village, countryside biking
10 Yangshuo / Longji
Drive to Guilin, Reed Flute Cave,lakes at city downtown, drive to Longji, ethnic Zhuang Village
Longji / Guilin / Xiamen Longji rice terraces, fly to Xiamen
12 Xiamen / Nanjing /Xiamen Drive to Nanjing County, Tianluokeng Earth Towers (Tulou), Yuchang Earth Buiding,Taxia Village, back to Xiamen
Xiamen / Huangshan Gulangyu Islet, Nanputuo Buddhist Temple, Coastal Road, fly to Huangshan
14 Huangshan / Shanghai
Yellow Mountain, Chengkan old village, old street of Tunxi, fly to Shanghai.
Yu Garden, Shanghai Urban Planning Exhibition, Tianzifang old city quarters
16 Shanghai
Free day

Day 01 Arrival in Beijing (No meal)

Landing at Beijing Airport, you will be met and transferred to the hotel.

Day 02 Beijing (B, L, D)

After breakfast, go to the Temple of Heaven, which is one of Beijing's most impressive sites in terms of architecture, color and significance and was used by Emperor to communicate directly with Heaven. After visiting it, visit the Forbidden City, nominated as World Cultural Heritage by UNESCO in 1987, is the largest ancient palatial structure in the world and the best-preserved imperial palace in China. Later, go to Jingshan Park, covers an area of more than 230,000 m², Jingshan is immediately north of the Forbidden City on the central axis of Beijing. Peking duck dinner at night.

Day 03 Beijing (B, L)

Private escorted tour by round-way cable car to Mutianyu Great Wall is planned in the morning. As the old saying goes, "One who fails to reach the Great Wall is not a hero". Therefore, it is the must-see site during your Beijing tour. After climbing the Great Wall, we'll lead you to have a pedicab tour to Hutong (Beijing's traditional alleyways) to see the local people's life and the traditional Siheyuan-style courtyard houses of Beijing.

Day 04 Beijing / Pinyao (B)

Transfer to the train station to board a fast train to Pingyao (4 hours). After arrival, explore the old town of Pingyao, where there was a well-preserved old town wall and many hundred-years-old buildings for different uses. Overnight at a local featured guesthouse.

Day 05 Pingyao (B, L)

After breakfast, drive 45km to visit Qiao Family Compound, a masterpiece of civil residential architecture of Qing Dynasty in North China, and then to the local cave dwellings, which used to be quite popular residence in the north of Shanxi and Shaanxi Province. Later, go to Double Forest Temple (Shuangli Si), a well-protected Buddhist temple dating back to 1400 years ago.

Day 06 Pingyao / Xian (B, L)

Visit Pingyao old town (UNESCO Cultural Heritage Site), ancient city wall, Rishengchang Exchange Shop, Ming Qing Street. After lunch, take an express train to Xian, Be met at the train station and transfer to the hotel.

Day 07 Xian (B, L)

After breakfast, drive to visit Banpo Museum, where houses artifacts from the archaeological site of Banpo. There you will see the reconstructed shelters designed to resemble the Neolithic settlement. Then proceed to the world famous Terra Cotta Warriors and Horses Museum. Later, drive back to the city, and stroll at the old Muslim quarter.

Day 08 Xian / Guilin (B, L)

Go and visit the Small Wild Goose Pagoda and Xian Museum, then explore the Gao’s Grand Courtyard, a typical residential house in Northwest China. It was assigned as the teaching base for graduate students of architectural departments of both Xi'an University of Architecture & Technology and Norwegian University of Science and Technology, Truncheon. Later in the afternoon, fly to Guilin. Transfer to your hotel at city downtown.

Day 09 Guilin / Yangshuo (B, L)

After breakfast, transfer to take a boat cruise down Li River, disembark at Yangshuo, transfer to stay at a featured hotel transformed from old houses of local farmers at Jiuxian village. Bike to the countryside to enjoy the stunning landscape and have a home visit to a farmer’s house.

Day 10 Yangshuo / Longji (B, L)

After breakfast, drive to Guilin and visit Reed Flute Cave, stroll around the lakes at city downtown. After lunch, drive to Longji, explore the ethnic Zhuang Village and their traditional stilted houses. Overnight stay at a guesthouse.

Day 11 Longji / Guilin / Xiamen (B, L)

Further explore the area and view the amazing rice terraces built since 800 years ago. After lunch, drive to the airport and fly to Xiamen. Transfer to the hotel.

Day 12 Xiamen / Nanjing /Xiamen (B, L)

After breakfast, drive 3 hours to Nanjing County, where is a major habitat for Hakka people. Visit Tianluokeng Earth Towers (Tulou), Yuchang Earth Buiding, and Taxia Village. Tulou is a traditional communal residence usually occupied by clan groups. Transfer back to Xiamen.

Day 13 Xiamen / Huangshan (B, L)

Go and explore Gulangyu Islet- Sunlight Rock, Shuzhuang Garden, Piano Museum. After lunch tour Nanputuo Buddhist Temple, Coastal Road for sightseeing. Take a late afternoon flight to Huangshan. Transfer to stay at a featured hotel of Anhui architecture style.

Day 14 Huangshan / Shanghai (B, L, D)

Start in the early morning, and have a full day trip to Yellow Mountain. Take a cable car up to the mountain and visit Grand Canyon of West Sea (Xihai) and other major sites. Later explore the Chengkan old village with less tourist flows and old street of Tunxi. Transfer to take an evening flight to Shanghai.

Day 15 Shanghai (B, L)

After breakfast, visit Yu Garden to have a glimpse of the ancient residence of the Chinese officials 300-500 years ago. Then drive to Pudong area to see the modern skyscrapers. In the afternoon, visit Shanghai Urban Planning Exhibition and Tianzifang old city quarters.

Day 16 Shanghai (B)

Free day for your own exploration.

Day 17 Shanghai departure (B)

Transfer to the airport and fly to your next destination.

End of service.


As all of our holidays are tailor-made it isn’t possible to give anexact price on the web-site as the final cost is dependant on a number of factors. These include the number of people in your party, the season you travel, the standard of hotel (we offer a variety of standards from three-star to super-luxurious) and duration of your trip. However, as aguideline you should expect to pay from US$ for the opposite itinerary.

Included Services

Private transfers airport/hotel/airport;
Private tours escorted by an English-speaking guide;
Accommodations with daily breakfast;
Meals specified in itinerary as B=breakfast, L=lunch, D=dinner;
Domestic flights and trains listed;
Admission fees.

Non-included Services,
Visa arrangement;
Excess luggage charge(the luggage allowance at economy class is 20kg);
Personal expense;
Any meals not specified as "B, L or D";
Gratuities to guides and drivers.

Tailor-made Suggestions

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I have no idea of how many minority villages I have visited in the mountains of Southwestern China. But I still feel the urge to explore more unknown areas.


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