B – breakfast, L – lunch, D – dinner
OCTOBER 11 • • •
On arrival at Beijing airport, you meet your deaf tour guide and transfer to your hotel. Welcome dinner. Stay in Beijing for 3 nights. D
OCTOBER 12 • • •
We start our imperial morning with a stroll through the authoritative Tiananmen Square and magnificent Forbidden City – a legacy left behind by the Ming and Qing dynasties. Then a short climb up the artificial hill, Jing Shan, overlooking the Forbidden City. After lunch, a pedicab tour gives us an insight into the everyday life in the Hutong including stops at Bell Tower and Drum Tower. B
OCTOBER 13 • • •
We see the majestic and sacred Temple of Heaven in the morning, then continue into the afternoon at the Summer Palace, which was built for Empress Cixi. Free time during the evening. B
OCTOBER 14 • • •
We visit the Great Wall at Jinshanling. The initial section of the wall has been restored to original condition, but the condition of the wall deteriorates towards its natural state as it approaches Simatai. Return back to Beijing. Late in the evening, we depart on an overnight sleeper train to Pingyao. B,L
OCTOBER 15 • • •
The Grand Courtyard of the Wang Family, with 123 houses and 1,118 rooms, is the highlight of our morning. We return to explore, Pingyao, an UNESCO World Heritage Site. Its well preserved ancient walls were constructed in 1370 with 6 barbican gates. Stay in Pingyao. D
OCTOBER 16 • • •
Early in the morning, we travel via high speed train to Xi’an, the capital city during the Han and Tang dynasties. Check into hotel before touring the Muslim Quarter, Bell Tower and Drum Tower. Optional full circuit bicycling on the ancient Xi’an city wall for approximately 8.5 miles / 1 to 1.5 hours in the early evening. Stay in Xi’an for 2 nights.
OCTOBER 17 • • •
Thousands of Terracotta Warriors greet our morning tour in Xi’an. The afternoon takes us to the Giant Wild Goose Pagoda. B,L
OCTOBER 18 • • •
In the morning, we fly to Lhasa, the traditional capital city of Tibet. The rest of the day will be spent relaxing in order to acclimate (due to high altitude at 11,450 feet/ 3,490 metres). Stay in Lhasa for 3 nights. B,L
OCTOBER 19 • • •
Visit two of the “Three Great Monasteries” – Drepung Monastery and Sera Monastery. Afterwards, we visit the 200+ year old Norbulingka Park, which is the most beautiful and largest man-made park in Tibet. B,L
OCTOBER 20 • • •
Potala Palace is the highlight of our morning. Originally built in the 7th century as an imperial palace, and was reconstructed in the 17th century. And has been the political, religious, cultural and economic center of Tibet. Afterwards, we visit Tibet Museum. Then the 7th century Jokhang Temple, which is the best architectural combination of Tibet, Han, Nepal and India, and holds the rare life-size statue of Sakyamuni. Walk around the thriving bazaar of Barkhor Street, and conclude our day at the Tibetan Traditional Medicine Hospital. B,L
OCTOBER 21 • • •
If time permits, we will be invited to visit a Tibetan family and get acquainted with the local life in details. In the afternoon, we fly to Lijiang to explore the 800 year old town on old tea horse road. Stay in Lijiang for 2 nights. B
OCTOBER 22 • • •
Lijiang, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, is the highlight of the day. We walk along the cobblestoned streets, waterways and bridges, and appreciate its architecture that is unique from other ancient Chinese cities. Visit the Mu Family Mansion, home of the rulers of the Nashi (Naxi) ethnic group for 470 years. B
OCTOBER 23 • • •
Morning flight to Chengdu. Evening at Kuan Zhai Alley. Stay in Chengdu.
OCTOBER 24 • • •
1.5 hour drive in the morning to Dujiangyan Giant Panda Base with an optional “cuddle with baby panda” photo shoot. Then, we fly down to Guilin to explore its soothing countryside with craggy limestone towers and caves overlooking lush plains. Stay in Guilin for 3 nights. B,L
OCTOBER 25 • • •
Marvel at the grand and magnificent Dragon’s Backbone Rice Terraces from the Yuan Dynasty. Explore traditional village life and wander through rice fields. L
OCTOBER 26 • • •
We take a cruise from Guilin to Yangshuo along the Li River. Lunch onboard. After arriving into Yangshuo, we have 2 hours of free time strolling around Xi Jie (West Street). L,D
OCTOBER 27 • • •
Transfer to the airport for your return flights back home, or continue on an optional extension in Hong Kong and/or Shanghai.
$500 USD deposit per person is required to reserve space. The availability of space is based on a first come, first serve basis. The remaining balance must be paid in full 90 days before the first day of the tour.
* Airfares at the start and end of the tour are not included.
* Chinese visa fee is not included.
* All other meals not mentioned in the itinerary and personal expenses are not included.
* It is essential to consult the HOT terms and conditions before booking.
* There is an extensive walking expected during the tour, especially in Beijing. Appropriate physical fitness is required.
* Tour itinerary and price are subject to change.
Hands On Travel recommends that you purchase a travel protection plan to help protect you and your travel investment against the unexpected. Travel protection plans include coverage for Trip Cancellation, Trip Interruption, Emergency Medical and Emergency Evacuation/Repatriation, Trip Delay, Baggage Delay and more. To learn more about how to help protect you and your trip investment, visit the following link: http://www.handson.travel/resources/protection/
Dan has been to 81 countries including Bolivia, Cuba, Morocco, Myanmar, North Korea and Oman. He has also presented at Deaf Youth Leadership Camps in Germany and Thailand as well as team-coordinating an exchange program between two deaf schools in Kentucky, USA and Kamensk, Russia.