Day 1: Beijing - Pingyao (L, D)
Be picked up from your Beijing hotel at 7am and driven to the airport for your flight to Tai Yuan. When you arrive, you’ll be driven to Pingyao by private airport transfer. On the way, stop at the Wang Family Courtyard, the largest folk residence cluster in China, and admire a display of distinctive Chinese architecture. When you arrive in Pingyao, check in to your four-star hotel, and then spend the evening however you wish – rest up for the days ahead or explore the old town on your own.
Day 2: Pingyao (B,L,D)
After breakfast, your guide will show you around Pingyao on a walking tour. Visit the Rishengchang Exchange House, a museum that was once the first draft bank of China, and then see the old city wall, the largest city wall in China that remains intact, displaying 72 terraces with battlements. Next, stop at a large compound of government offices built in the Ming and Qing styles. All of these sites have their own interesting stories and legends, which your expert guide will share with you. In the afternoon and evening, explore more of the town’s shops, museums and streets at your leisure.
Day 3: Datong (B,L,D)
After breakfast, a private vehicle will take you to Datong, stopping by the Hanging Temple on the way. An ancient temple that seems to be carved into the cliffs 164 feet (50 meters) from the ground, the Hanging Temple boasts Buddhist, Taoist and Confucian structural elements. It’s an elegant and marvelous sight, complete with temple gates, a bell and drum tower, and large halls. Your expert guide will show you around the temple, sharing anecdotes with you and answering any questions you may have. When you arrive in Datong at around 5pm, your guide will lead you to a popular restaurant for a delicious dinner of local Chinese delicacies. Afterward, spend the evening enjoying the city's sights on your own.
Day 4: Datong - Beijing (B,L)
After breakfast, your guide will take you on a visit to one of the most famous ancient Buddhist sculptural sites in China – the Yungang Grottoes. The caves are a World Heritage Site known for their fusion of Buddhist symbolic art from south and central Asia with Chinese cultural traditions. Walk inside the caves and around the site to see the astounding display of different statues, Buddhist paintings and stone carvings. After your morning of touring the caves, board your train back to Beijing, where a private vehicle will be waiting to transport you back to your hotel.
Visas - A visa is required for entry into China for all nationalities except Japan, Singapore and Brunei who are allowed visa free stays under 14 days. Travellers holding APEC cards are allowed entrance visa free if their card has already been approved for China.
Under the current guidelines to get a visa you will need to provide the following:
- Letter of Invitation from a Chinese agency
- Copy of Flight tickets
- Hotel booking confirmation
- Travel Insurance (some embassies ask for this document)
In some cases, you may be required to provide further information or documentation and if this is the case we will notify you as soon as possible.
Booking a Single Room - On this particular tour we are pleased to be able to offer travellers the option of pre-booking a guaranteed single room. Due to the variety of accommodation used on this tour, single rooms are available for a majority of the nightstops, however it would still mean sharing on any overnight trains. All of our tours are planned and operated on a twin-share basis, meaning that the standard cost is based either on individual travellers sharing accommodation with another group member of the same sex, or people who book together sharing accommodation.
Vaccinations and Your Health - We recommend that you contact your primary care physician or a travel doctor for advice on vaccinations and travel health and we advise that you check to see if your tetanus-diphtheria booster is still valid every 10 years.
Insurance - Travel insurance is compulsory for all our customers. At the start of the trip you must provide us with: the name of your insurance company, your policy number, a 24 hour medical emergency contact number, and the expiry date of the policy. You should ensure that your policy covers you for medical expenses and repatriation. If you are unable to provide all this information at the start of the trip you will not be allowed to join the trip. You can purchase insurance easily online by checking our Travel Insurance page.
Luggage - One main piece of lockable baggage and a shoulder bag. Total allowance: 44lbs/20kgs. Remember, you are expected to carry your own baggage – so don’t overload yourself. It is essential that your baggage is lockable; the airline/train authorities insist on this. Please be aware, before boarding a flight in China that the Chinese authorities will only allow bottles onto aircraft if they have been checked in as main luggage. Any bottles in the hand luggage may be confiscated.
What to Expect on Tour
Itinerary Disclaimer – The information in this trip details has been compiled with care and is provided in good faith. However it is subject to change, and does not form part of the contract between the client and the operator. The itinerary featured is correct at time of printing. Occasionally our itineraries change as we make improvements that stem from past travellers, comments and our own research. Sometimes it can be a small change like adding an extra meal along the itinerary. Sometimes the change may result in us altering the tour for the coming year. Ultimately, our goal is to provide you with the most rewarding experience.
Accommodation -Your accommodation is selected for convenient.