China & the Yangtze - A Luxury Small Group Journey (2020)

Discover China’s past and present — from historic Beijing, to the bustling metropolis of Shanghai. Visit the iconic Terra Cotta Warriors and giant pandas, and explore the storied Yangtze River.

Journey Overview

Delight in a multitude of ancient wonders and iconic sites on this in-depth journey through China. Starting off in Beijing you’ll cover off on all the most important attractions from the Forbidden City and Tiananmen Square to the Great Wall and the Temple of Heaven. Pedal through the hutongs by pedicab and savour some of China’s tastiest cuisine. Get up-close to the Terracotta Warriors in the Silk Road city of Xian and see prized pandas in their natural habitat. A luxury cruise through the Three Gorges reveals the Yangtze at its most impressive and dynamic Shanghai provides the perfect finish.

Journey Highlights

  • Embark on a three-night cruise on the Yangtze River aboard all-balcony ‘Sanctuary Yangzi Explorer’
  • Go off the beaten path to the less-visited and well-preserved Mutianyu section of the Great Wall of China
  • View the incredible Terra Cotta Warriors with an on-site specialist in Xian
  • Enjoy an up-close-and-personal encounter with giant pandas, where they roam free in a recreated habitat
  • Visit the Shanghai Museum on a special private tour with its curator

Journey Itinerary

Day 1: Arrive Beijing, China.

Arrive in the capital city of Beijing, China’s longtime seat of power, where you are transferred to your luxurious hotel.
Four Seasons Hotel Beijing

Day 2: Bejing | China's Dynastic Capital.

After your welcome briefing, participate in a private tai chi lesson taught by a master instructor at the Temple of Heaven, a stunning example of classical Ming period architecture. After lunch, take in the sweep of history at Tiananmen Square before exploring the imperial grandeur of the Forbidden City. Tonight, gather for a special welcome dinner at your hotel. 
Four Seasons Hotel Beijing | Meals: BLD

Day 3: Bejing | View the World From the Great Wall.

This morning, Ride Like a Local on a pedicab through a hutong, a vast yet intimate neighbourhood of small winding alleyways dating to China’s dynastic period. Then, travel to the well-preserved Mutianyu section of the Great Wall of China. Ride a cable car to the top of the wall to take in sweeping views of the surrounding mountains. After experiencing this wonder of the world, return to Beijing.
Four Seasons Hotel Beijing | Meals: BL

Day 4: Xian | Key to the Great Silk Road.

Fly to Xian, a modern city cloaked in over 3,000 years of history. Once the eastern terminus on the Great Silk Road, Xian has become a melting pot of Middle Eastern and Asian influences. Upon arrival, enjoy a Chef’s Table noodle-throwing demonstration followed by lunch. Visit the old city’s Muslim Quarter with its teeming markets and beautiful Great Mosque, a 14th-century national heritage site. A blend of classic Chinese temple architecture and central Asian embellishments make it one of the most fascinating sites in Xian.
The Ritz-Carlton, Xian | Meals: BL

Day 5: Xian | Terra Cotta Warriors, Army for the Afterlife.

Today, accompanied by an on-site specialist, visit the excavation site of the Terra Cotta Warriors and Horses, the life-size army created during the Qin Dynasty to protect Qin Shi Huang, China’s first emperor, in his afterlife. More than 8,000 remarkably crafted soldiers are spread throughout three dig pits, each revealing a unique face. After lunch, stroll along the impressive ramparts of the City Wall. Tonight, gather for dinner.
The Ritz-Carlton, Xian | Meals: BLD

Day 6: Chengdu | Exploring People’s Park.

Travel by bullet train to Chengdu, the capital of Sichuan Province. For lunch, enjoy a spicy Sichuan hot pot, a regional specialty. Afterward, immerse yourself in local life and culture at People’s Park, where area residents play traditional Chinese instruments, practice calligraphy and engage in tai chi. Then, learn about unique, centuries-old matchmaking techniques still in use today, before checking in to your hotel, where you observe a traditional tea demonstration.
Waldorf Astoria Chengdu 
| Meals: BLD

Day 7: Chengdu & Chongqing | Giant Pandas.

Today, visit the Chengdu Panda Breeding and Research Centre. Enjoy the rare opportunity to observe these endangered creatures roaming freely in their specially designed habitat. Then, board a high-speed train for a ride through the Chinese countryside to Chongqing, where you embark on your river cruiser, ‘Sanctuary Yangzi Explorer,’ for a three-night journey to Yichang. Settle into your cabin as the ship sails downstream to the stunning Three Gorges region.
‘Sanctuary Yangzi Explorer’ | Meals: BLD

Day 8: Cruising the Yangtze | Along Asia’s Great River.

Start your morning with tai chi on the deck before breakfast. Disembark in the small city of Fuling and enjoy a shore excursion, beginning with a visit to the White Crane Ridge Underwater Museum. Descend 150 feet underwater to see centuries-old rock carvings. Afterward, continue to a local market to gain insight into the region’s rich culinary culture. This afternoon, learn about Chinese traditional medicine and reflexology. Tonight, attend the Captain’s Reception.
‘Sanctuary Yangzi Explorer’ | Meals: BLD

Day 9: Cruising the Yangtze | The Three Gorges.

Early this morning, ‘Sanctuary Yangzi Explorer’ navigates the Qutang and Wu gorges before anchoring at Badong, where you board a ferry and travel up Shennong Stream. Transfer to “pea pod” boats poled by Tujia boatmen to view a scenic gorge. The Tujia are members of a local minority culture famed for their boatbuilding skills and keen knowledge of the Yangtze. Gain insights into their daily lives on a village visit. Return by ferryboat to your ship. Tonight, savour a “Taste of China” dinner, followed by onboard entertainment.
‘Sanctuary Yangzi Explorer’ | Meals: BLD

Day 10: Yichang & Shanghai | Disembark ‘Yangzi Explorer’.

This morning, disembark in Yichang and fly to Shanghai, stopping briefly to photograph the Three Gorges Dam, a project that resulted in the resettlement of 1.2 million residents of the cities submerged behind it. Upon arrival in Shanghai, transfer to your elegant hotel, located on the city’s historic Bund.
Waldorf Astoria Shanghai on the Bund | Meals: BL

Day 11: Shanghai | Design Your Day.

Explore dynamic Shanghai, where stunning modern skylines meet classic street markets and gardens. Begin your day with a visit to the Shanghai Observation Tower for a birds-eye view of the city. This afternoon enjoy one of these Design Your Day activities:

  • Walk Shanghai’s Historic Jewish Quarter and learn how it became a haven for Jews fleeing Europe in World War II.
  • Join a Guided Shopping Tour of the city's famed French Concession.
  • Set Out on a Street Food Tour, exploring Shanghai’s rich culinary heritage and authentic markets on a foodie-centric street tour.

Waldorf Astoria Shanghai on the Bund | Meals: B

Day 12: Shanghai | Life on the Bund.

Today, walk along the Bund, Shanghai's most popular promenade. Later, visit the Shanghai Museum and its exceptional collection of historically significant art including bronzes, ceramics and paintings. Explore the museum in the company of the museum curator, a privately-led A&K exclusive experience. Following lunch, continue on to explore Old Town and Yu Garden before returning to your hotel for the remainder of the afternoon at leisure.
Waldorf Astoria Shanghai on the Bund | Meals: BL

Day 13: Depart Shanghai.

After breakfast, transfer to the airport to depart for home or begin a Hong Kong Post-Tour Extension.
Meals: B

Journey Details

This journey contains some active elements.
Minimum age is 10 years.
First group event: welcome briefing at 8:30 a.m. on Day 2.
Last group event: farewell dinner at 7:30 p.m. on Day 12.
Departures are guaranteed to operate with a minimum of 2 guests.
Please note that multiple groups of 18 A&K guests and other passengers may be travelling on board ‘Sanctuary Yangzi Explorer’ simultaneously.

Show Full Itinerary


Sanctuary Yangzi Explorer

China & the Yangtze - A Luxury Small Group Journey (2020)

Highlights:Recently refurbished, the elegant Sanctuary Yangzi Explorer sets a new standard in luxury river cruising, ... Read more

Waldorf Astoria Shanghai on the Bund

China & the Yangtze - A Luxury Small Group Journey (2020)

Waldorf Astoria Shanghai on the Bund offers a heritage ambiance, faultless service and those essential amenities to make your stay truly ... Read more

Four Seasons Beijing

China & the Yangtze - A Luxury Small Group Journey (2020)

Enter the Four Seasons Hotel Beijing and be graced by modern elegance and unsurpassed sophistication all edged in a traditional Chinese s ... Read more

Dates & Prices

Journey Dates & Prices

Prices are per person, based on double occupancy

Oct 30, 2020 - Nov 11, 2020
Cabin Class Sanctuary ‘Yangzi Explorer’: Main Deck Price AU$12,090pp Single Supplement AU$4,630 Internal Air (From) Included Availability Call for Availability Enquire
Cabin Class Sanctuary ‘Yangzi Explorer’: Xiling Deck Price AU$12,235pp Single Supplement AU$4,775 Internal Air (From) Included Availability Call for Availability Enquire
Cabin Class Sanctuary ‘Yangzi Explorer’: Wu Deck Price AU$12,380pp Single Supplement AU$4,920 Internal Air (From) Included Availability Call for Availability Enquire
Cabin Class Sanctuary ‘Yangzi Explorer’: Wu Deck (Suite) Price AU$13,685pp Single Supplement AU$5,935 Internal Air (From) Included Availability Call for Availability Enquire
Cabin Class Sanctuary ‘Yangzi Explorer’: Qutang Deck (Suite) Price AU$13,975pp Single Supplement AU$6,225 Internal Air (From) Included Availability Call for Availability Enquire
Cabin Class Sanctuary ‘Yangzi Explorer’: Jade/Mandarin/ Celestial/Imperial (Suite) Price AU$17,890pp Single Supplement AU$10,430 Internal Air (From) Included Availability Call for Availability Enquire

Availability shown here is updated weekly and indicative only. Availability on any product or journey shown here is not specific to a category of travel and may not denote availability at the cheapest ‘From’ price. For real time availability, talk to your travel agent or call Abercrombie & Kent on 1300 851 800.

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