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17-Day China Tour with Tibet & Yangtze Cruise

Tour route: Shanghai - Yangtze River - Chengdu - Lhasa - Xian - Beijing

  • Tour code: Essential Tour-Select-06
  • Tour Style: Affordable Private Tour (No Join-in Group Tour).
  • Price inclusions: All transportation mentioned in itinerary (flight, train, ship, private car, etc.); private guides & drivers, hotels, meals (based on your meal plan), and all service charges & taxes.
  • Travel date: private tour with flexible travel date.
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Day 1: Shanghai, Arrival

Upon your arrival at Shanghai, China's most cosmopolitan city, your personal guide will meet you and escort you to your hotel. The rest of the day is yours to relax, or step out into this amazing city for an adventure on your own.

Day 2: Shanghai, City Tour

Today, we will bring you to explore more highlights in Shanghai. Start with the famous Yu Garden and the Yuyuan Market. Later visit Shanghai Museum which houses lots of art treasures and then drop by a Silk Factory to see how silk is made, before having a leisure stroll at the Bund and Nanjing Road. You will have some time to explore the Xin Tian Di area. 

Tonight, a recommendation for you is the famous Acrobatics Show which will bring you a memorable night in Shanghai.

Day 3: Shanghai-Yichang, Shanghai Sightseeing
Have some leisure time before being escorted to the airport for your flight to Yichang, where to start your wonder Yangtze River Cruise. Be met and transferred to the pier upon arrival. Board the ship around 19:00 and depart Yichang at 21:00.

Note: It is a good idea to have dinner at your own expense in the downtown before boarding the ship. Your local guide will give some suggestions on where to dine.
Day 4: Yangtze River, Three Gorges Dam

Your relaxing Yangtze Cruise begins. In the morning,join in the on board activities such as Taiji Lessons in preparation for your exploration.

Your ship will stop for an excursion to the well-known Three Gorges Dam, the largest hydroelectric complex in the world. Then back to your ship and pass through the unique Five-Level Ship Lock. This evening, you are invited to participate in the Captain’s Welcome Party.

Day 5: Yangtze River, Lesser Three Gorges

Today you will sail through Wu Gorge in the morning and take another excursion to the scenic Lesser Three Gorges or ShennongStream, according to weather conditions. You will also experience an exciting sampan ride rowed by boatman. Then return to the ship and view the scenery of the short Qutang Gorge.

Day 6: Yangtze River, Fengdu Ghost City

The last excursion will take you to Fengdu Ghost City, a city known for its special ghost culture. Perched on the Mingshan Hill by the river bank, it originated from a legend that two officials (Yin and Yang, their combination means Ghost King) became immortals here, 1,700 years ago. Since then, various statues,sculptures and paintings depicting the afterlife world have been created.Then continue sailing to Chongqing and join the farewell party in the evening.

Day 7: Yangtze River, Chongqing city tour, Chongqing-Chengdu
Disembark the cruise ship at Chongqing in the late morning and then take a half day tour to explore Chongqing. You will visit the Erling Park and Ciqikou Old Town. Then you will be escorted to train station for your train to Chengdu. Upon your arrival in Chengdu, our guide will meet you and escort you to your hotel.
Day 8: Chengdu, Giant Pandas & City Highlights

This morning, drive out of the city to visit the Giant Panda Breeding Research Base to meet the lovely pandas. Then go back to Chengdu city and visit the Marquis Wu Shrine, Jinli Old Street and the Kuanzhai Alley, to touch the history and local life of Chengdu people. 

A highly recommendation to you tonight is Sichuan Opera with face changing performance as an optional entertainment.

Day 9: Chengdu-Lhasa, At Leisure

You will be free to explore the city on your own until being escorted to the airport for your flight to Lhasa, the capital of Tibet. When you arrive, your local guide will welcome you and transfer you to your hotel (around 1.5 hours' drive). After check-in, you are advised to rest at your hotel to acclimatize to the high altitude.

Day 10: Lhasa, The Potala Palace

Your Tibet tour begins with the overwhelming Potala Palace. As an emblem of Tibet, it was the winter palace of Dalai Lama (Tibet’s commensurate pope) and the actual religious center of the region. Every day many pilgrims from all over Tibet trek months and miles to worship their gods and pray for their blessing here. Brilliant religious architectures, sculptures and paintings can be fully-admired here.

In the afternoon, you will visit the centuries-old Jokhang Temple, the holy spiritual center of Tibetans, and walk the circular pilgrim route with local followers at Barkhor Street.

Day 11: Lhasa, Monastery Sightseeing

Today you’ll tour the enchanting Norbulingka Park,which is known as Tibet’s Summer Palace, see the training place of Dalai Lama at the historic Drepung Monastery, and then proceed to the Sera Monastery to appreciate the unique Buddhism scripture debating culture. You will see the daily life of the devoted monks and discover how they enjoy their simple life in these ancient monasteries.

Day 12: Lhasa-Xian, At Leisure

Free in the day until our local guide escorts you to the airport for your onward flight to Xian. Upon arriving in Xian, your local guide will meet you at the airport escort to the hotel.

Day 13: Xian, Terracotta Warriors & City Tour

You will visit the incredible life-size Terracotta Warriors. Here you'll see over 6,000 life-size Qin Dynasty-era terracotta soldiers, chariots and horses, an army designed to protect Qin Shihuang, China's first emperor, in the afterlife. After lunch, you will visit the Jade Gallery and then cycle along the top of Xian’s Ancient City Walls (1-2 hours). When on the wall, you will be impressive by the view of the old city contained within its walls on one side and the modern city that lies without to the other side.

An optional night show for you is Tang Dynasty Show which is a dancing performance based on Tang Dynasty background.

Day 14: Xian-Beijing, The Summer Palace

On this day you will be free to pursue your personal activities until being transferred for your speedy train to Beijing.

Upon arriving in Beijing, you will be picked up and escorted to your hotel. After a short rest, you will head out to tour and marvel at the picturesque Summer Palace. As an imperial summer resort of Qing Dynasty, the Palace is reputed for its perfect layout, exquisite royal architectures and enchanting landscape. Your tour concludes with a stop at a Pearl Store.

Day 15: Beijing, Classic Sightseeing

On this day you will first visit Tiananmen Square, the largest plaza on earth. Passing through the iconic Tiananmen Gate, then you will enter the splendid Forbidden City, China’s No.1 palace complex famous for its grand royal buildings, exquisite ornaments and priceless treasures.

In the afternoon, you will come across the old Bejing by entering into the Hutongs, where you will have a leisurely walk into the local Beijingers’ daily life. Try your hands at painting a facial make-up of Peking Opera on a paper model and meet a local cricket trainer to learn their stories about cricket fighting.

Day 16: Beijing, Great Wall Tour

No Beijing tour is complete without a visit to the Great Wall (Mutianyu section). As a popular symbol of China, the breathtaking Walls was built on the mountain ridges brick, by brick only resorting to manpower 2,000 years ago. Stretching about 4,000 miles across northern China, it is entitled the Eighth Wonder of the World, a must-visit of China. This afternoon, you will visit the Chang Tomb.

Day 17: Beijing, Temple of Heaven/Departure

After a break, you will tour the spectacular Temple of Heaven and enjoy watching locals doing their morning exercises. It is a nice chance for you to chat with them, and even learn some native exercises from them.

After the tour, you will be escorted to the airport for your flight to your next destination.

Recommended Accommodation for Your Journey

It is no doubt your journey enjoyment will be increased by a good choice of accommodation. Our well-established network with key hotel chains around China will bring you more benefits of competitive rates and guaranteed hotel quality with availability.

Standard Tour ClassComfortable Tour ClassDeluxe Tour Class
ShanghaiGreenland Jiulong Hotel comfortable hotel star No.601 Liyang Road,Hongkou District, Shanghai 200080 China The Bund Hotel comfortable hotel star 525 Guangdong Road, Shanghai China The Westin Bund Center Shanghai deluxe hotel star No.88 Henan Middle Road, Bund Center, Huangpu District, Shanghai 200002, China
ChengduMinShan Lhasa Grand Hotel standar hotel star No 88, Northern Road of Xiaojia River, No 4 of the Southern Part of Yihaung Road, Chengdu, Sichuan Tianfu Sunshine Hotel comfortable hotel star No.2, Taisheng north Road, Chengdu, Sichuan, China Sofitel Chengdu Taihe deluxe hotel star 15 Binjiang Middle Road, Sichuan Province CHENGDU, CHINA
LhasaNew Mandala Hotel standar hotel star Jiangsu Road Stadium Toward East 50 meters, Lhasa, China XinDing Hotel comfortable hotel star 8 Second Jinzhu Road (Jinzhu Er Lu) Four Points by Sheraton Lhasa comfortable hotel star

Room Type:Junior Suite

No 10, Bo Linka Road, Lhasa, Tibet, China
XianSkytel Xi'an (Formerly Prince International Hotel) standar hotel star No.32 South Main Street, Beilin District, Xi'an 710001, China Grand Noble Hotel Xian deluxe hotel star 334 Dong Da Jie(East Street), Xian City, Shaanxi Province, China No. 334 East Street, Xian City, Shaanxi, P.R.C. 710001 Sofitel Xian on Renmin Square deluxe hotel star No. 319 Dongxing Road, Xian, China, 710004
BeijingDong Fang Hotel Beijing standar hotel star No. 11 Wanming Road ,Xuanwu District, Beijing ,China P.C.100050 Beijing Novotel Peace Hotel comfortable hotel star 3 Jinyu lane, Wangfujing, Beijing, 100006, China The Regent Beijing deluxe hotel star 99# Jinbao Road, Dongcheng District, Beijing, China

We pick Hotels for You Based on:
Location:most of properties we selected are either located in downtown area with main city attractions or close by main transportations. These conveniences will certainly improve your holiday experience.
Facility & Service Quality:all hotels are inspected strictly and regularly, must be with great performance on accommodating English speaking customers, and excellent feedbacks from our pervious clients as well.
Diversity for Choice: many styles and grades of hotels are available for different budgets, tastes and culture backgrounds.


Hotel criteria for each tour class

Hotel arrangement for Standard Tour Class

It will meet the basic requirements for a comfortable stay, good size and clean guest rooms with AC, TV, hot water, shower and private bathrooms. On-site restaurants with breakfast included and lunch or dinner at your own pick up. A small fitness center or spa can be expected.

Standar Hotel


Hotel Arrangement for Comfortable Tour Class

Normally you'll stay at formal and large hotels conveniently located with shopping, dining and entertainment facilities nearby. Quality service, fully furnished rooms, restaurants, room service, fitness center and swimming pool (in very rare cases there is no pool) all together offer an above-average accommodation experience. 
Usually good 4-star hotels are adopted or boutique hotels at request. Hotels best available will be arranged if no qualified choice, e.g. in remote area.

Comfortable Hotel


Hotel Arrangement for Deluxe Tour Class

Luxurious hotel with top-notch service and an extensive range of facilities for an excellent accommodation experience. Multiple restaurants on site with extensive menus for choice, room service available 24/7, fitness center and concierge service round out the experience. Hotels best available will be arranged if no qualified choice, e.g. in remote area.

Deluxe Hotel


Normally China Odyssey Tours provides two meals each day: Breakfast and Lunch. You will have the freedom to make your own dinner choice.


It is normally served at the hotel where you stay. Depending on the hotel, the breakfast would be in western style, Chinese style, or a combination.

A la carte lunch

When plan your lunches, we consider the balance of food quality, dining environment and tour convenience. We provide a la carte lunch in a local restaurant whenever possible. A la carte meal will give you an opportunity to eat at local restaurant, follow local customs, and taste local dishes. The a la carte allowance would be adequate for a decent meal in our recommended local restaurants, but varies from different restaurants and different cities. However in some remote regions where it’s simply hard to find a non-tourist restaurant, the meal could be arranged at a local tourist restaurant or a local family.

Your own dinner choice

Dinners will not be included in your meal plan unless you have that requirement. Enjoying the local food could be one of your best experiences in China. This is why we provide you this flexibility of food choice. Your private guide will always give you good suggestions based on your preferences.

If you have certain food allergies or special requirements such as vegetarian food, let us know. We will do our best to accommodate your needs.

Private Guide & Transfer

You will have a private tour guide, private driver, and an air-conditioned vehicle escorting you at every destination you travel. This will provide you with maximized personal care, security, and flexibility.

All of our tour guides are qualified professionals and registered English Speaking Tourist Guides in China who are reassessed annually. All of our tour vehicles are clean and in excellent condition, manned with licensed safe drivers.

Private Tour Guide

You will always be greeted punctually on arrival at each destination airport. At every departure, your guide will stay at your side until you have checked in and passed through the security checkpoint.

All of our travel guides in every destination are locals, who know the area well, they are very good at guiding you around and telling background stories of the tour sites, as well as showing you the secret spots for taking your best photos.

When changing your itinerary is needed due to unexpected reasons, your private tour guides will be more than accommodating in suggesting alternatives to ensure that you have a wonderful experience.

Private Transportation

With our comfortable and safe private transportation, your tour will be more relaxing and less tiresome, keeping you in the best spirits to make the most of your experience in China.

In every destination visited, your vehicle is air conditioned, clean, and expertly maintained. Your private driver is licensed, insured, and very experienced.

To maximize your comfort, we use vehicles with extra space for you and your luggage. Depending on how many are traveling together, we generally use sedans or mini vans (7 seats) for 4 people or less, large vans or small coaches (12-22 seats) for 5-12 people, medium coaches (33 – 37 seats) for 13 – 25 people, and large coaches (45 seats over) for more than 25 people.

Reviews on: China Tour with Tibet & Yangtze Cruise

Rating 4.9 - 2,260 Reviews
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2260 reviews sorted by date

Clients: franfroehlich

Travel Consultant:
Leila Deng
Everyone should go to China and see the terracotta warriors. But if you go, you want the best experience, and that is with China Odyssey Tours and their tour guide Cathy. My family of five went over Christmas, 2016. Cathy was such a blessing, she was fun, interesting, insightful and really catered to our individual family needs, and that is not always easy.

We saw the terracotta warriors, but Cathy made it much more than an exhibit. She made the experience come alive. We could almost see the workers placing the soldiers. It was my husband's bucket list and Cathy did not disappoint. Her commentary was exceptional. We will never forget the trip, Cathy made it special.
Rating: February 15th, 2017

Clients: Ricky Barnes

Travel Consultant:
Reinself Wei
We are in the beginning stages of planning a tour to China. We found Odyssey Tours through reviews on Trip Advisor and we were introduced to Mr. Reinself Wei via email. Mr Reinself Wei has been very helpful in planning our trip, and he has been excellent to communicate with. We are very happy with all the planning and and look forward to our trip.
Rating: February 14th, 2017

Clients: Parrish Smith

Travel Consultant:
Wendy Wan
My wife and I booked our Odyssey tour with the assitance of Wendy and it was the best trip of our lives. We traveled to Beijing China and it was SPECTACULAR. I can not begin to tell how great the service was from meeting our tour guide and drive at the airport until our last day. My hat goes off to Daniel, our tour guide and Mr. Lee the driver. Also, what I found to be interesting was my wife and I went on our own for a celebratory dinner and Daniel encouraged that we give him a telephone to assure him that we made it in safe. If anyone has the opportunity to travel to Asia, I would encourage them to take advantage of Odyssey for the service is top notch.
Rating: February 14th, 2017

Clients: Anne Badger

From: Australia

Travel Consultant:
Alex Quan
Alex Quan has been amazing, helping us arrange our special celebratory trip to China for 2017. He has made it so easy, and has been so kind when I have asked SO MANY questions. Alex has met every change with a positive can-do attitude. We can't wait to begin our adventure. Thank you Alex, keep up the great work.
Rating: February 14th, 2017

Clients: Matt Wilson

Travel Consultant:
Alex Quan
ABSOLUTELY FANTASTIC TOUR COMPANY! PERFECT ITINERARY, TOURS AND SUPPORT!This review is long overdue.My family has traveled to all 50 U.S. States and nearly 40 countries. That said, we had never been to China. After searching for the perfect tour company and itinerary, I finally came across Odyssey Tours. My contact and the person that was intregal in insuring our 18-day tour of China was perfect was Alex Quan. Alex was very pleasant and helpful and worked with me to put together an itinerary that our family will never forget. Equally fabulous, similar but different Hong Kong and Shanghai followed by stunning and beautiful Guilin. The Giant Pandas of Chengdu, The Terracota Army of Xian, and the amazing history of Beijing with its' Great Wall, Forbidden City, Winter Palace and many other sites. These are obviously just the highlight sites however, there are way too many memorable and historic sites to list here. Everything went beautifully with our tours and tour guides. An amazing education and a trip our family with never forget. Thanks again to tour Coordinator Alex Quan along with our fantastic guides; William, Alice, J.J., David (our favorite), Kevin, Erin and Leo. They all did such a great job! We look forward to returning to spectacular China someday and when we do, we'll absolutely use China Odyssey Tours!Thanks again Alex Quan and Odyssey Tours!
Rating: February 14th, 2017
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