China is a land of history and refinement unparalleled in the world. Attentive visitors are immersed in a sea of visual and cultural experiences unlike any other they may have had elsewhere. Each geographic area in China teems with its own identity as an energetic variation on the great theme of Chinese civilization. You will be amazed at how regions differ vastly yet express similar values and ideas. This tour explores the less visited southern part of China.
Start your southern China exploration with an overnight stay in Shanghai. Fly to Xiamen (‘Amoy’ in local dialect), a charming coastal city on the north shore of Taiwan Strait. Here you will see an interesting blend of Chinese and western architecture due to the city’s trading history in the past centuries, and explore historic sites such as the well known Gulangyu Island and the Nanputuo Si Monastery, plus the extraordinary “Tulou” traditional residences in Yongding county.
Wing on to Changsha, capital of Hunan Province. Pay a visit to one of the oldest private colleges in China and tour the city’s landmark. Then a short hop by air get you to Zhangjiajie, site of a huge national park with the scenery inspired the creation of the ‘Floating Mountains’ for the Hollywood movie “Avatar”. Explore the magnificent landscape with countless draw-dropping vistas and charming local culture.
Travel by air to Guangzhou, south China’s trading city and economic powerhouse, and capital of Guangdong Province. Your exploration focuses on the nearby Kaiping county, which will bring you a dramatic landscape of century old tower houses ‘Diaolou” standing in green rice paddies and among lush groves – a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
Fly westward on to Guiyang, capital of Guizhou Province. Green and lush parks dot this vibrant city and a day excursion will bring you to China’s largest waterfall – Huangguoshu Waterfall. With a diverse culture and ethnic population, Guizhou Province is home to more than 20 ethnic minorities and Kaili is the center of the Miao People who still practice ancient rituals and follow centuries old traditions. You will explore several colorful minority villages.
For a total change of climate and surroundings, you take a flight to Sanya on the island province of Hainan, China’s Hawaii. Separated from China’s mainland by Qiongzhou Strait, Hainan island is just a bit smaller than Taiwan and it enjoys all year round tropical weather. After a brief city tour of Sanya, you will stretch and relax on the sandy beaches of your luxury resort hotel.
Fly to Hong Kong for an overnight stay an d then head home on a cross-Pacific flight.