Since opening up to travellers, China and its northwestern neighbours don’t seem quite as out-there a destination to some people – but they’re clearly not looking in the right places. This comprehensive 26-day journey from Beijing to Tashkent is one of those experiences that will stay with you for a lifetime. Picking up in the Chinese capital, you’ll visit the Uyghur province of Xinjiang, learning about the food, culture and history of this minority group. Then, we’ll leave China behind and venture into Kyrgyzstan and Uzbekistan to retrace part of the route that helped build empires: The Silk Road. From stunning snow-capped mountains to arid deserts, experience a side of Asia in a way that you’ll barely believe is real.
Highlights: Wander along the Great Wall, stare down the Terracotta Warriors, ride a camel through sand dunes, bargain at Kashgar's Sunday bazaar, stay in a yurt with a Kyrgyz family, marvel at the sights in Bukhara and Samarkand.
Essential China (ACEC)
Encounter the essence of China in all its wonderful diversity—climb the Great Wall and stare down the Terracotta Warriors before heading down south on this 3-week tour of China's cultural and natural highlights. Rest your gaze on the giant Buddha of Leshan and explore ancient mountainside monasteries at Emei Shan, then float down the world-famous Three Gorges of the Yangtze River before stepping out to experience the vibrant rural life and stunning scenery of Yangshuo. With your accommodation and transport arranged by our expert CEOs, this adventure offers up a great combination of must-see highlights and free time to explore on your own.
Highlights: Bargain in bustling markets, hike the Great Wall and explore the Forbidden City, stand face-to-face with Terracotta Warriors, visit a panda sanctuary, cruise the Yangtze, bike through Yangshuo's karst landscape
Kailash Saga Dawa Festival (ACSF)
Journey overland to Tibet and cross the ‘roof of the world’ to Kailash—Asia's most sacred mountain—in time for the amazing Saga Dawa Festival. You'll join pilgrims and celebrate the renewal of the Tarboche flagpole, then embark on a demanding multi-day trek around the holy mountain which is said to bring good luck to whomever completes it. Explore Lhasa and experience unparalleled vistas of Mt Everest at its base camp. Full of cultural treasures, remarkable Buddhist monasteries and the colourful markets of Kathmandu, this adventure truly is a once-in-a-lifetime experience.
Highlights: Witness pilgrims replace the Tarboche flagpole, hike the ancient Kailash kora, visit spectacular palaces and incredible monuments, arrive at Everest Base Camp
Trans Mongolian Express (ACTM)
From the Great Wall of China to the Hermitage in St Petersburg, travel halfway around the world in three incredible weeks. Board one of the world’s great trains and ride the rails on this once-in-a-lifetime trip across the grassy steppes of Mongolia and through the taiga forests of Siberia. Share train carriages with locals, overnight in Mongolian ger tents and in a cozy Russian homestay. Not only does this trip provide the perfect blend of comfortable accommodations and plenty of activities, but also free time to explore this fascinating region at your own pace.
Highlights: Explore the courtyards of the Forbidden City and walk along the Great Wall of China, ride the rails through Mongolia's grassy steppe and Siberia's taiga forest, stay in a local village on Lake Baikal, admire the grand structure of Moscow's Kremlin and Red Square, marvel at the rich art collection in the Hermitage.
Wild China (ACWC)
Walk the Great Wall of China and trek through stunning Tiger Leaping Gorge. Stare down Terracotta Warriors and commune with giant pandas. For those seeking a unique adventure that balances China’s highlights with a look at its ‘wild’ side, this 3-week tour gives you the classics before taking you further afield to the hidden gems. Best of all, you get the free time you need to explore at your own pace. Whether wandering mountain monasteries or cycling through the region’s watercolour scenery, this tour will take you down the road less travelled.
Highlights: Meet the Terracotta Warriors, sleep overnight in a monastery, hike Emei Shan and Tiger Leaping Gorge, marvel at the Li River countryside near Yangshuo, bask in the glamour of Hong Kong
Explore two ancient nations in 18 well-packed days on this unique journey that takes you from the epic lengths of the Great Wall of China to the poetic views of Mt Fuji. You'll face an army of Terracotta Warriors for an historical encounter you won't soon forget and spend nights in a traditional ryokan and a shukubo temple lodging for an authentic Japanese experience. Our CEOs will take you off the beaten track to reveal the cultural treasures of the region’s ancient sites.
Highlights: Experience the contrast between cultures, meet the ancient Terracotta Warriors, cross the East China Sea, get a bird's-eye view of Mt Fuji from a cable car, stay in a traditional ryokan
The Silk Road of China (ACSR)
Geographically and culturally, Northwest China is about as far away from “traditional China” as you can get without crossing the border. The source of the Silk Road—the ancient trade route that helped create the modern world—is unlike anything you’ll find in Beijing or Xi'an, and this 17-day adventure takes you deep into the China few ever see. Otherworldly experiences abound: watch the sun rise over the dunes outside Dunhuang, explore the world of the Muslim Uyghurs, spend the night in traditional yurts near Urumqi, and venture into the Taklamakan Desert to Kashgar. There’s more, of course, but we’ve got to keep a few secrets, right?
Highlights: Walk along two sections of the Great Wall, stare down the Terracotta Warriors, ride a camel through sand dunes, learn about the Uyghur culture, stay in a traditional Kazakh yurt, bargain at Kashgar's Sunday bazaar
Tibet Adventure (ACTA)
Take part in rituals and haggle for a bargain in the markets. From modern Beijing, travel back in time across scenic countryside to Tibet on this well-packed overland adventure. Witness the splendour of the Potala Palace and the majesty of remote monasteries and then celebrate the journey to Kathmandu. Wake up to views of Everest and enjoy a window into the heart of this remote land. A local guide and CEO will show you the region’s hidden gems and make sure your trip burns brightly in your memory long after you've climbed down from the roof of the world.
Highlights: Visit incredible monuments and palaces, explore the bustle of Beijing and hike the Great Wall, ride the rails on the Trans Tibetan railway, experience monk debates in Sera Monastery, set eyes on Everest Base Camp
Hanoi to Hong Kong (AVHK)
Looking to mix a little rural living with your adventures in Asia’s big cities? This 15-day trip across China and Vietnam fits the bill and then some, getting you to the metropolises and out into the gorgeous countryside of both countries. Between Hanoi and Hong Kong, you’ll experience the stunning cliffs of Halong Bay and Guilin’s limestone karsts, and get a hands-on feel for the landscape by hiking, rock-climbing and rafting in Yangshuo. Toss in personal encounters with some of the region’s friendliest people and you’ve got yourself the perfect balance of rural and urban life.
Highlights: Cruise through the limestone karsts in serene Halong Bay, hang with the locals at a karaoke bar in Liuzhou, stroll over the 'wind and rain' bridges of Chengyang, walk between villages of the Longji Rice Terraces, enjoy a night out in glitzy Hong Kong
Highlights of China (ACHC)
Experience the towering achievements of China's rich history as you uncover its past along the Great Wall and reflect on its future among Shanghai’s gleaming towers. Explore the country’s great cities, magnificent architecture, Buddhist heritage and archaeological treasures. Float down the Yangtze River and wander among iconic limestone karsts. Our expert CEOs will reveal the region’s hidden gems, taking the hassle out of travel so you can focus on experiencing all that China has to offer.
Highlights: Explore Shanghai's Bund and the famous Shanghai Museum, cycle Yangshuo's dramatic rice fields, relax on a Three Gorges cruise, visit the Terracotta Warriors, walk along the Great Wall
Volunteer China – Pandas (ACZJ)
This unique itinerary introduces the highlights of the Middle Kingdom — from the historic gems of modern Beijing to the ancient walls of Xi'an and cosmopolitan glitter of contemporary Shanghai — while allowing you to give back to the community at the same time. From the palaces and temples of Beijing, venture to the countryside to experience the grandeur of the Great Wall and offer vocational training at a school with people who have developmental disabilities. In Xi'an, witness the world-famous Terracotta Warriors. In Chengdu, indulge in the culinary spice that is Sichuan cuisine, and volunteer at the largest panda reserve in the world to help ensure these distinctly Chinese icons are around for future generations to admire.
Highlights: Volunteer at a school for people with developmental disabilities offering vocational training, come face-to-face with pandas in Chengdu, explore the bustling streets of China's biggest cities, hike along the Great Wall, meet the Terracotta Warriors.
To truly understand China, you’ve got to get out and meet it on its own terms, which is exactly what this 12-day trip through the country’s northern reaches delivers. Up here, you’ll get to the big stuff (the Great Wall, Xi’an’s Terracotta Army, Beijing) and lesser-known treasures that only the hardiest of travellers ever get to see: village life in Inner Mongolia, the amazing Yungang Buddhist Caves and the nearly 3,000-year-old city of Pingyao, to name just a few. North China: No tourists allowed!
Highlights: Envision ancient times at the Great Wall of China, live like a local in an Inner Mongolian ger, marvel at the Hanging Monastery of Datong, stare down the Terracotta Warriors, learn traditional Chinese painting in Pingyao
Beijing to Hong Kong Express (ACBK)
Stand face to face with the Terracotta Warriors and marvel at the Temple of Heaven and other national treasures on this 10-day showcase of four diverse yet defining pieces of the Middle Kingdom. From the Forbidden City to the power of the Great Wall, head south through spectacular karst scenery to the bright lights of Hong Kong. Discover China's natural and cultural highlights with the perfect combination of included activities and free time to explore.
Highlights: Climb the Great Wall, stroll through Tiananmen Square and the Forbidden City, stare down the Terracotta Warriors, cycle through scenic rice paddies, marvel at skyscrapers in Hong Kong
Best of Yunnan (ACBY)
China is developing faster than just about anywhere else, but after wandering the scenic highlands of Yunnan for a while, you can’t help but wonder, “What’s the rush?” This 10-day trip is ideal for travellers eager to dig into a side of China you won’t find in bustling Beijing. Hike the huge (and hugely gorgeous) Tiger Leaping Gorge, explore Buddhist monasteries, stroll the streets of the Ming-influenced old city of Dali and meet up with the locals for an impromptu dance party in Shangri La. This is China, unfiltered.
Highlights: Explore the old town of Lijiang, hike Tiger Leaping Gorge, visit a monastery in Shangri La, indulge in the spicy cuisine of Yunnan
China Express (ACCR)
Walk backwards in time along the Great Wall and stare down an army of Terracotta Warriors before leaping into the future of Shanghai's incredible high-rise towers on this fast-paced tour of China’s highlights. With the perfect blend of guided activities and free time to explore on your own, this adventure is made for those who want to get a taste of China in a short amount of time.
Highlights: Trek along the Great Wall, visit the Forbidden City in Beijing and the canal town of Suzhou, experience a local meal and Terracotta Warriors in Xi'an, enjoy an acrobat show in Shanghai
Essential China (ACEC)
Kailash Saga Dawa Festival (ACSF)
Wild China (ACWC)
Hanoi to Hong Kong (AVHK)
China Express (ACCR)
|Trip||Length||Style||Service Level||Starting Price|
|Central Asia on the Silk Road (ACKU)||26 days||Classic||Standard||
|Essential China (ACEC)||21 days||Classic||Standard||
|Kailash Saga Dawa Festival (ACSF)||21 days||Classic||Standard||
|Trans Mongolian Express (ACTM)||21 days||Classic||Standard||
|Wild China (ACWC)||21 days||Classic||Standard||
|Ancient Empires—Beijing to Tokyo (ACCJ)||18 days||Classic||Standard||
|The Silk Road of China (ACSR)||17 days||Classic||Standard||
|Tibet Adventure (ACTA)||15 days||Classic||Standard||
|Hanoi to Hong Kong (AVHK)||15 days||Classic||Standard||
|Highlights of China (ACHC)||14 days||Classic||Standard||
|Volunteer China – Pandas (ACZJ)||14 days||Classic||Standard||
|Hidden China & Inner Mongolia (ACNC)||12 days||Classic||Basic||
|Beijing to Hong Kong Express (ACBK)||10 days||Classic||Standard||
|Best of Yunnan (ACBY)||10 days||Classic||Standard||
|China Express (ACCR)||8 days||Classic||Standard||