415-890-6168
info@chinaexpeditiontours.com
Chinese Residential Architecture Exploration Tour
from US$2420 per person

Chinese architectural style is rather diversified. People build different houses to adapt to different climates and purpose. The Chinese can build great construction as the Great Wall and elegant water village as Zhouzhuang in Suzhou. Our tour begins from Beijing, to witness and climb the magnificent ancient construction of the Great Wall, wandering along Hutong to get a brief impression of this big capital. The largest city of China-Shanghai will amaze you by its modern atmosphere and traditional culture and art. Enjoy a day tour to Mo's Park-the ancient architecture pearl in China. The ancient capital city Xi'an is really a Chinese history book. Here you can visit the splendid Terracotta Warriors and Horses. The characteristic Yaodong dwelling house gives you a deep impression. Those ancient towns in Dali, Lijiang show you an isolated paradise of China. The Dai minority village welcomes you with its bamboo houses on poles. Then we come to Guiyang, where you will be amazed at the Diaojiao building created by intelligent minority people. What's more, you will marvel at the magnificent Terrace field in Longsheng, experience a cruise on the world-wide famous Li River through stunning karst landscapes in Guilin. Enjoy a leisurely walk at the West Street and be intoxicated in the warm and romantic atmosphere.

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  • Content-rich Itinerary
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  • Meeting Local People
  • Authentic Chinese Food
  • Centrally Located Hotel
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Tour Code: CET-AC02 Length:
Cities Visited/Stayed: Beijing, Shanghai, Xi'an, Kunming, Dali, Lijiang, Shangri-la, Xishuangbanna, Guiyang, Guilin, (Hong Kong)
Highlight Attractions: Forbidden City, Great Wall, Summer Palace, Yu Yuan Garden, Jade Buddha Temple, Terracotta Warriors and Horses Museum, The Stone Forest, The Three Pagodas, Jade Dragon Snow Mountain (Yulong Xue Shan ), Songzanlin Monastery, Li River
Experience &Features: Hutong Tour & Siheyuan in Beijing, Old Residential Area in Shanghai—Shikumen, Zhujiajiao & Zhouzhuang Town near Shanghai, Mo’s Park, Children’s Palace, Xi’an City Wall, Dali Ancient Town, Bai Minority Family Visit, Lijiang Ancient Town, Tibetan Family Visit, National Minorities Custom Park, Dai Village, Wild Elephant Valley, Miao Village, Yao Village, Yangshuo Town, South China Sea Pearl
Physical Rating (What Is It?):
 1 
Cultural Shock Rating ( What Is It?):
 2 
Day 1: Beijing

When you arrive in Beijing, our guide (CET representative) will meet you at the airport and transfer you to the hotel.

Stay overnight in Beijing. 

Meals:


Day 2: Beijing

After breakfast, we will have a morning walk on the [Temple of Heaven], which is a complex of buildings, gardens, and pathways. What’s more, its organization indicates relationship between Earth and heaven. And then we will go to the [Tian'anmen Square]. You can be wandering on it while you can appreciate the magnificent of this architecture. It is one of the largest city squares in the world, located on the central axis of old Beijing. In the center of Tian'anmen Square stands the Monument to the People's Heroes. Followed we will go to the [Forbidden City], the imperial palaces for the emperors of the Ming and Qing dynasties. The city contains 800 ceremonial buildings, 9,999 rooms, and a courtyard that can hold 100,000 people. Best ancient Chinese architectural styles are well preserved here, providing an imposing view. Later the day will be on your own to explore more about this city.

Stay overnight in Beijing.  

Meals: (B, L)


Day 3: Beijing

There is a famous saying that "You are not a hero unless you climb on the Great Wall." This morning we drive to the [Jinshanling Great Wall], the less developed and commercial section of the Great Wall. This historic construction is somewhat dangerous to climb because it winds up and down the precipitous ranges, but as a reward, splendid views are available. People say that a visit to Beijing isn't complete without trying the crispy and tasty Peking duck dinner, so we highly recommend a featured dinner for you at one famous restaurant.

Stay overnight in Beijing.  

Meals: (B, L)


Day 4: Beijing-Shanghai

This morning we will pay a visit to [Hutong] (the Chinese word for alleys in Beijing) in Shichahai area. This area still looks as it did originally, presenting you the style of ancient Beijing. Tourists from all over the world gather here and go through Hutongs by sitting in a rickshaw, enjoying the concentrated old Beijing. The buildings in Hutong are almost in quadrangles. That means a building complex formed by four houses around a quadrangular courtyard. The quadrangles vary in size and design according to the social status of the residents. Then we will go to visit the [Summer Palace] to see one of China’s architectural masterpieces. The beauty of the Summer Palace is deliberated. The pavilions, kiosks, terraces, bridges, dikes, corridors are delicately crafted and placed, well displaying the thousand-year-old Chinese landscape gardening. The scenic spots contain a nation's profound philosophical and aesthetic tradition.

Later this afternoon, we will drive to the airport for a pm flight to Shanghai. Upon arrival, you will be met by the guide and transferred to the hotel. The rest of the day will be on your own to relax.

Stay overnight in Shanghai. 

Meals: (B, L)


Day 5: Shanghai

Today we will guide you to a place where you find more delicate handicrafts and tasty Chinese snacks. That is the [Yuyuan Garden]. The exquisite layout, beautiful scenery and the artistic style of the garden architecture have made the garden one of the highlights of Shanghai. Also a visit to the [Jade Buddha Temple] will be included. It is an elegant structure famous for its Buddha statue which is carved of solid white jade and decorated by jewels. Lunch will be arranged at a characteristic Shanghai restaurant. After lunch our guide will take you to the [Outer Bund]. Some say actually that the Bund is like "an exhibition of buildings". Afterwards you may have a leisurely walk on the [Nanjing Road]. It is the most prosperous commercial street where you can find lots of world famous brands setting along the street and enjoy a good time in shopping.

Stay overnight in Shanghai.  

Meals: (B, L)


Day 6: Shanghai

Enjoying a reputation as "exposition of architecture of the world", Shanghai display elegant appearance of architecture in various style. There are building standing in various styles, Gothic, Baroque, Rome, Renaissance, Classic and the combination of Eastern and Western style. This morning we will pay a visit to [Shikumen Area]. It is emerged from the traditional quadrangular courtyard. When it appeared in Shanghai, it is in traditional wood structure and bricks with the frame of door made of stone materials. This kind of building that mix together Chinese and western art has given a deep influence in Chinese architecture history. Shikumen building began popular in the early twenties century. More than three quarter of local people lived in that kind of building. Until now there are still many citizens living in Shikumen building. You may feel the hint of the old Shanghai while enjoying a leisurely walk in that area. A cruise on the Huangpu River is recommended, where you are able to see wonderful night views of the bright city.

Stay overnight in Shanghai. 

Meals: (B, L)


Day 7: Shanghai-Zhujiajiao Ancient Town-Zhouzhuang-Shanghai

This morning we will drive to [Zhujiajiao ancient town]. With a long history, this ancient town was a bazaar in Song and Yuan Dynasty. The crystal water and run through the town with 39 bridges connecting the nine old streets, forming a graceful water village scene. The north street still keeps its style of Ming and Qing Dynasty, displaying a picture of prosperous ancient commerce background in front of you. Local snacks are delicate and delicious, you can choose to have a try. After lunch, we will continue to [Zhouzhuang], one of the most famous water townships in China, only 30 kilometers (18 miles) southeast of Suzhou. It is noted for its profound cultural background, the well preserved ancient residential houses, the elegant watery views and the strong local colored traditions and customs. It abounds with rivers and lakes. We will enjoy a leisurely afternoon walking around. Stone bridges and overhanging towers span the waterways to provide free passage for the local people. The murmuring streams under small bridges and dwelling quarters with delicate courtyards are the distinct features of Zhouzhuang, now rarely seen in the whole of East China. In the evening, we will drive back to Shanghai.

Stay overnight in Shanghai. 

Meals: (B, L)


Day 8: Shanghai-Pinghu-Shanghai

Today we will drive to Pinghu city to visit the [Mo's Park]. It is a large scale ancient residential area. This residence has a total of 77 rooms and a total area of 2600 square meters. It belonged to Mo Fangmei and his family in the Qing Dynasty. Mo's Park is a classic of Chinese ancient residential complexes of the southern region. Its design is small, elegant, and sophisticated. Ancient red wood furniture comes from the Qing Dynasty. The entire park is filled with dark paint, white walls, and colorful ridges of houses. Wandering in this graceful park makes you feel as if you are travelling in the ancient times. Late the day we will drive back to Shanghai.

Stay overnight in Shanghai. 

Meals: (B, L)


Day 9: Shanghai-Xi'an

This morning we will discover a different aspect about Shanghai by visiting the [Children's Palace] (when in session), there you may see lovely children take activities such as playing music instruments or dancing. After lunch we will drive to the airport for a pm flight to Xi'an.

Stay overnight in Xi'an. 

Meals: (B, L)


Day 10: Xi'an

With a history of more than 3,000 years, Xi'an has abundant collection of archaeological relies to express its rich history. This morning we will go to visit [Banpo Museum], where you can see lots of precious unearthed cultural relics and artworks, indicating the prehistoric civilization. Also, situated east of Xi'an city, the [Terra-cotta Warriors and Horses Museum] is famous throughout the world for life-sized terra-cotta warriors and horses. The three pits of the terra-cotta warriors and horses excavated will show you how magnificent the structure of Emperor Qin Shihuang's Mausoleum was. In the evening you may choose local special Dumpling Dinner and the Tang Dynasty Music and Dance Show.

Stay overnight in Xi'an. 

Meals: (B, L)


Day 11: Xi'an-Yan'an

Early this morning we will take a coach to Yan'an Town. We will go to visit the [Yaodong Dwelling house] of local people upon arrival. Yaodong is typical residential dwelling place in Loess Plateau of north China. The simple and unsophisticated architecture blend hillocks and gullies into a harmonious whole, which embody the simple, reserved and deep characters of local people. The doors and windows of Yaodong are exquisitely decorated by various paper-cutting red pictures, just like a folk artistic palace. The largest complex of Yaodong building is typical and magnificent, which draws many tourists to come and visit.

Stay overnight in Yan'an. 

Meals: (B, L)


Day 12: Yan'an-Xi'an

In the morning, you enjoy a leisure morning on your own. After lunch, we will drive back to Xi'an. The rest of the day will be free on your own.

Stay overnight in Xi'an. 

Meals: (B, L)


Day 13: Xi'an-Kunming

This morning we will go to visit the ancient [City Wall] and the [Provincial Museum], a striking Tang-Dynasty style pavilion, houses a large collection of 113,000 historic and cultural artifacts unearthed in Shaanxi. And the[Big Wild Goose Pagoda] will be included. It is one of the city's most distinctive and outstanding landmarks, possibly the most beautiful building left in Xian today. And we then take a pm flight to Kunming.

Stay overnight in Kunming.  

Meals: (B, L)


Day 14: Kunming-Dali

Today we will have a whole day tour to the[Stone Forest]. Those magnificent stone masterpieces, various strange and steep intricate formations, and countless labyrinthine vistas make Stone Forest (Shi Lin in Chinese) worthy of the fame as the “First Wonder of the World”. And there goes a local saying: 'It is a waste of time without appreciating the Stone Forest while visiting Kunming'. Later this afternoon we drive to Kunming Train Station to catch an overnight train to Dali after dinner.

Stay overnight on train. 

Meals: (B, L)


Day 15: Dali

When you arrive at Dali Train Station, you will be picked up by your guide and transferred to your hotel in the Old Town. The rest time in the morning will be your own.

After lunch, we will set out to visit a typical sight of Dali-the [Three Pagoda Temple]. As its name implies, Three Pagodas are made up of three ancient independent pagodas forming a symmetrical triangle. This is unique in China. You can enjoy a walk along the[Dali Ancient Town]. It was an important gateway to the Silk Road in Southwest China, and also served as a seat of government and a major military barracks for Yunnan Province in ancient times. By witnessing some parts of the city wall and the tower remained, we can still explore the mystery belonging to the history. The city layout was uniform, with five main streets from south to north and eight main streets from east to west, while marketplaces were neatly arranged within the city, which has remained unchanged to this date. Traditional Bai ethnic minority folk houses can be seen everywhere, which give us a different feeling from any other Chinese cities. Then we will continue to [visit a local Bai Minority Family] for the first-hand experience of the local daily life. Their traditional way of life and finished handicrafts will surely impress you.

Stay overnight in Dali Old Town.

Meals: (B, L)


Day 16: Dali-Lijiang

Today we will depart for Lijiang by private car, van or bus after lunch. It is roughly a 3.5hour-drive. The beautiful scenery on the way will surely give you some special feeling, and we will give you some spare time to relax and take some photos. You will arrive in Lijiang before dinner time.

Stay overnight in Lijiang. 

Meals: (B, L)


Day 17: Lijiang

Lijiang is an ancient town with unique architectural styles and people there still hold on their original way of living. This morning we will go to the [Jade Dragon Snow-capped Mountain]. With skyscraping snow-capped peaks and its imposing body, it reflects in the interlaced rivers flowing under the old town, composing a fabulous picture. Viewed from afar, the snow-capped range resembles a silver dragon with snow curling up its middle. Rich forest, herb and animal resources thrive on the mountain and a giant tram cart up here is one of the highest of its kind in China. Later we will take cables to climb the mountain and you will be intoxicated in the picturesque scenery. And we will also organize a [Naxi Minority family visit] in the afternoon.

Stay overnight in Lijiang. 

Meals: (B, L)


Day 18: Lijiang-Shangri-la

Today we will depart for Zhongdian by private car, van or bus after breakfast. It will be a long drive. You will have a lunch on the half way. And the scenery all the way is fantastic. You will arrive in Zhongdian before dinner time.

Stay overnight in Shangri-la.

Meals: (B, L)


Day 19: Shangri-la

[Songzanlin Monastery] is a spiritual hub for people to discover the mystery and traditions of Tibetan Buddhism and also is a famous Tibetan style Buddhist temple in China. Today we will go there as many tourists do, all of us are attracted to this scenic spot for they can enjoy the view and be lucky to take photos of girls wearing exquisite Tibetan costumes holding perfectly white fluffy lambs against the imposing mountains and blue sky. Simultaneously, we will visit the [old part of the town], a [Tibetan family visiting] included as well. The Tibetan built their houses in distinctive religious styles influenced by Buddhism. You can taste Tibetan specialties of yak butter tea, local yogurt and Tibetan barley. Later this afternoon will be on your own to walk around. We suggest you to get a feeling of local people's daily life by visit the local market.

Stay overnight in Shangri-la.

Meals: (B, L)


Day 20: Shangri-la-Kunming-Xishuangbanna

We take a morning flight back to Kunming, and another flight followed from Kunming to Xishuangbanna. Upon arrival, our guide will meet you at the airport and transfer you to the hotel. This afternoon we will go to visit the [National Minorities Custom Park]. There are innumerable tropical and fruit trees around this area. Six minority group customs, including Dai, Akha, Jinuo, Bulang, La and Ya, are displayed here every day. Distinct, rich and colorful ethnic performances and activities are usually held each Wednesday, Saturday evening and the evenings of festivals. At harvest time, a certain area of the orchard is marked off so that visitors can pick up some tropical fruits like lichee and mango here by themselves, tasting the pleasure of harvest.

Stay overnight in Xishuangbanna. 

Meals: (B, L)


Day 21: Xishuangbanna

Today we will drive to a [Dai Village] surrounded by water on three sides and characterized by blue waves and green fields and shaped like a jade hairpin. Among the green sub-tropical trees and fresh flowers are "the bamboo houses on poles." The houses are mainly made of bamboo, with leaves as the shelter covering their ceilings and walls. All houses are lifted above the ground by strong bamboo lumbers. Its unique and laudable architecture is well-known far and near, mainly consisting of a White Pagoda, Residential House and Craft House, a performing house for ethnic customs, a restaurant of local flavor and a Burmese Temple. In addition, there are some water splashing pavilions and wells enhancing the village complex. The small village is also famous for its warmhearted hospitality and good food. All kinds of ethnic cuisine can be tasted in several home-style restaurants. Have a great time there.

Stay overnight in Xishuangbanna. 

Meals: (B, L)


Day 22: Xishuangbanna

To the Dai people, the elephant is the symbol of good luck, might and longevity. The wild elephants of Xishuangbanna mainly live in the [Wild Elephants Valley] (yexianggu), at the juncture of the western and eastern part of Menyang natural reserve. Today we will drive there to visit the valley. About 300 wild Asian elephants live in the jungle, which has an area of 369 hectares. Actually this is the only place in Xishuangbanna, known locally as the "Kingdom of Elephants", you will marvel at these giant animals. There is an observation tower and a five kilometer-long sightseeing cableway, a 300-metre-long overhead corridor built for elephant watchers. A hotel is built right in the trees to satisfy the visitors who long to observing wild elephants more closely. The best time to see these impressive beasts is at dawn or dusk. If we are lucky enough we can catch the chance to watch the elephant shows which are held at 11:00 am-12:00 noon and 2:00-3:00 pm every day. Later the day we will drive back to Xishuangbanna.

Stay overnight in Xishuangbanna. 

Meals: (B, L)


Day 23: Xishuangbanna-Kunming-Guiyang

Today, you may consider it as a flight tour day. We are going to take a flight back to Kunming, and another flight followed from Kunming to Guiyang. Situated in southwest China, Guiyang has a population of about 3.5 million, of which 65% is Han and the rest a mixture of minorities such as Miao, Bouyei, Dong, Yi, Shui, Hui, Gelao, Zhuang, Yao, Bai, Tujia, etc. The most populous minority ethnic group is the Miao, and less populous are the Buyi, the Dong, and the Tujia. With beautiful scenery, pleasant climate and abundant tourist resources, it is a developing tourist resort of China. Upon arrival, your guide will meet you at the airport and transfer you to the hotel. The rest of the day will be leisure at relax.

Stay overnight in Guiyang.

Meals: (B, L)


Day 24: Guiyang-Kaili

After breakfast, we will drive to Kaili. On the way we enjoy beautiful sceneries, and pass the [Nanhua Miao Village] and other minority villages. Then we will arrive at Langde Miao Village. Circled by green mountains, [Langde Shang Village] is situated at the foot of a mountain and beside a crystal stream. Row upon row of roofed wooden bridges, called "Wind and rain" bridges by the locals, stretching over the stream and making a picturesque scene. The [Diaojiao buildings] (wood houses propped up by wooden supports with ladders leading up), tier upon tier peaks rising one higher than another, are covered in the green forest. You will find that people wearing colorful and exquisite minority costumes, by marvel at their graceful songs, their traditions and cultures. Lunch will be finished at a local restaurant to taste the special sour fish dishes. Then we will continue to visit another village and their traditional way of paper making techniques.

Stay overnight in Kaili. 

Meals: (B, L)


Day 25: Kaili-Guiyang-Guilin

This morning we will drive back to Guiyang city. We are going to the [Qianling Park] today. Qianling Mountain situated in Guiyang's northwestern corner provides a vast comprehensive garden for the city. And the park is located on Qianling Mountain, northwest of Guiyang. As one of the noted attractions on the Guizhou plateau, it boasts clear water, green mountains, tranquil forests and old temples. About 1500 kinds of trees and flowers as well as 1000 kinds of herbs have been found there in the Qianling Mountain. And there are gregarious macaques and flocks of birds too. More than 500 energetic and enchanting macaques live in the mountain in the park and add to the features of the park. There is a "holy fountain" up the mountain whose water is so clean that local people consider it coming from the heaven. The flowing steams from the fountain and the mist surrounding the forest make it one of the greatest eight scenic spots in Guiyang. This evening we will leave Guiyang for a flight to Guilin.

Stay overnight in Guilin. 

Meals: (B, L)


Day 26: Guilin-Ping' an

Today we will go to Longji, a minority area with magnificent terraced rice paddies. You may have a chance to take some wonderful pictures of minority people wearing exquisite costumes along the way. The[Longji Terraces], located in the southeast of Longsheng County, are built into the hillsides which look like great chains or ribbons as they wind from the foot to the top of the hill. This ingenious construction makes best use of the scare arable land and water resources in the mountainous area. Later this afternoon we will drive to visit [Huangluo Red Yao minority village], women there all keep their hair to a length of more than one meter. You will be marvel at their characteristic red costumes and beauty.

Stay overnight in Longsheng.

Meals: (B, L)


Day 27: Longsheng-Guilin

Early this morning we will go to the Longsheng town, you can see daily life of local people by visiting the local market to have interesting discovery. Then we will drive back to Guilin city (about 2 hour drive).

Stay overnight in Guilin.

Meals: (B, L)


Day 28: Guilin-Yangshuo

This morning we need to catch a ship for [Li River cruise]. Cruising downstream with a pleasant breeze greeting, you can sit on cushion comfortably or enjoy the open-air viewing platform. Bring lots of film because this is a photographer's dream place where you are able to capture the dramatic landscapes that Chinese artists have been painting for centuries. You will have lunch onboard while enjoying the landscape to Yangshuo. Disembark and walk to the West Street, which has received countless foreigners from all over the world and reputed as "Global Village in China". Today, the 600 meters long street is over 300 cafes, restaurants, hotels art crafts and tourist stores, foreign language clubs, internet centers and Kungfu schools.

This afternoon you will be free at leisure, you can enjoy a coffee time at the West Street, or walk around the small Yangshuo town.

Stay overnight in Yangshuo.

Meals: (B, L)


Day 29: Yangshuo-Guilin

After breakfast, we will drive back to Guilin city, spending the rest of the day in Guilin to visit some shinning scenic spots that make the city unique and especially beautiful. The [Elephant Trunk Hill] is the symbol of Guilin, standing in the Li River and looks like an elephant drinking water from the river. And, The[Reed Flute Cave], one of the most spectacular caves, displays karst geographical formation in various shapes. After the visit, we will continue to the nearby [South China Sea Pearl Museum], where we can learn some knowledge of pearls and have the chance to purchase real sea pearl at competitive prices. After dinner, we recommend a cruise in the city's central area on a water system, which will absolutely give you a deep impression of Guilin.

Stay overnight in Guilin. 

Meals: (B, L)


Day 30: Guilin-Hong Kong-Departure

Today will be on your own to relax and until you are ready to be transferred to the airport for a flight to Hong Kong to continue your tour or for departure. Our service will end at the airport.

Meals: (B)


Pricing & Accommodations
  • Currencies:
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  1 person 2-5 persons 6-9 persons ≥10 persons Single Room Supplement
First Class Tour $9608 $6006 $5114 $4062 $2100
Comfortable Tour $7670 $4810 $3919 $3169 $1210
Standard Tour $6313 $4068 $3318 $2420 $770
* Price in every box above is for each person.
* The default currency is in US dollar. Please use the Currency Converter to see the equivalent quote in your currency. Price is for references only, it may vary according to your actual travel itinerary, travel time, hotel price rise or fall, US dollar exchange rate fluctuation, car fuel price change and government tax adjustment, etc..
* The price is only for your reference and it is subject to seasons, high or low.Please send us your inquiry if you are interested.
* The differences between First Class Tour, Comfortable Tour and Standard Tour are mainly reflected in the hotels we use. For First Class Tour, we use mostly 5 star hotels (or hotels corresponded to 5 star ones), 4 star hotels for Comfortable Tour and 3 star hotels for Standard Tour. But there’re exceptions when there come home stay experience, remote destinations and other specified circumstances in the itinerary.

Price InclusionPrice Exclusion
  • Attraction Entrance Fees
  • Centrally Located Hotels
  • Authentic Chinese Food
  • Private Experienced Guides
  • Private Cars/Van with Drivers
  • Internal Flights/Train(s) in China
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