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  • Departing from?Dublin + 3
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  • When?March 2015
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Christmas in Beijing Xi'an and Shanghai
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Christmas in Beijing Xi'an and Shanghai

  • 12 Night Holiday
  • B&B
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Discover China’s most fascinating historic and cultural sites on this exceptional holiday. Our enthusiastic local guides speak excellent English and take great pride in showing you their amazing country. 

Beijing, sometimes described as China’s ‘Heart and Soul’, offers a unique blend of ancient imperial palaces, oriental gardens and modern skyscrapers, as well as the awe-inspiring Great Wall of China. In Xi’an, marvel at the extraordinary Terracotta Warriors and the Wild Goose Pagoda. To round off this incredible adventure in spectacular style, visit the glittering city of Shanghai, where East meets West. Truly a ‘Dream Holiday’, this fabulous China experience will leave you with unforgettable memories.

 

Practical Information for this holiday

Currency
Chinese Yuan (¥) – pronounced ‘wan’
Local Time
Ireland/UK Time +8 hours
Passport
Irish/UK citizens are required to obtain a visa before travelling to China. Visas cannot be obtained on arrival. Passport must be valid for at least 6 months after the duration of the intended stay. Click here for more information on visas for China. 
Airport

The airport in Beijing is located 28km northeast of the city. Shanghai Airport is located approx. 30km from Shanghai City Centre.

Climate

China’s spring is mostly dry. In July and August the weather turns hot and humid. Autumn is the nicest time of the year with many warm, clear days and usually little wind.

Food & Drink
Chinese food eaten in China is much fresher and more unusual than you would get in your local takeaway. Peking duck, Cantonese beef soup, fried rice, and pork noodles are just some of the specialities served here and this is a fantastic opportunity to try tasty regional dishes as you travel. If you prefer to stick to more familiar dishes, there is an abundance of western restaurants in Beijing and Shanghai.
Vaccinations & Health
Vaccinations may be required before your departure - please consult with your GP or Tropical Medical Bureau. Larger cities in China may at times experience poor air quality. If you have a respiratory condition it is advisable to discuss this with your medical practitioner prior to booking your holiday.
Average Prices for Region
  • Coffee: 27 ¥
  • Beer: 11 ¥
  • Glass of wine: 13 ¥
  • Meal: 28 ¥
  • Soft Drink: 4 ¥
  • Bottled Water: 4.50 ¥

 

€1 = approx 7.5 ¥

Packing List
  • Your valid passport
  • Sun cream
  • A 220v plug adaptor
  • A small backpack
  • A sun hat
  • Comfortable shoes
  • Camera
Recommended Reading

Falling Leaves by Adeline Yen Mah

Empress Orchid by Anchee Min

Empire of the Sun by J.G. Ballard

 

Holiday highlights

The Great Wall of China

Originally a series of smaller walls protecting various separate Chinese states, the wall was connected more than 2000 years ago by the Emperor Qin to defend the first unified kingdom of China. Subsequent extensions and restorations performed by the later Chinese dynasties turned the wall into a world famous magnificent engineering project.

Forbidden City

This is the best preserved cluster of ancient buildings in China, and is now a UNESCO World Heritage Site.  

Summer Palace

Badly damaged by Anglo-French troops during the Second Opium War (1860), the restoration of this palace became a project of Empress Dowager Cixi, the last of the Qing dynasty rulers. Money earmarked for a modern navy was used for the project but, the only thing completed was the restoration of a marble boat. The boat now sits at the edge of the lake in all its glory. 

Temple of Heaven Park

The Temple of Heaven is set in a 267-hectare park, with four gates at the cardinal points, and walls to the north and east. It originally functioned as a vast stage for solemn rites and rituals. All of the buildings in the park, including the Round Altar, the Imperial Vault of Heaven, and the Hall of Prayer for Good Harvests, are tangible conversations between the gods and mortals. 

Tiananmen Square

Tiananmen Square lies at the heart of Beijing, and is a vast impressive desert of pavestones where people wander and fly kites. 

Xi’an
Museum of Qin Terracotta Warriors & Horses

These life-sized terracotta figures of warriors and horses were discovered in 1974 by farmers digging for a well near the Mausoleum of the First Qin Emperor. Altogether over 7,000 pottery soldiers, horses, chariots, and weapons have been unearthed from the pits where they were found, and the work on site continues.

Xi’an City Wall

The city is surrounded by an ancient wall which was re-constructed in the 14th century, during the early Ming Dynasty and was based on the inner imperial palace of Tang Dynasty. The outer city is 13.7 km in circumference and it occupies an area of 11.5 square km.

Shanghai
Oriental Pearl Tower

This futuristic tower in Shanghai is one of the city’s most recognisable landmarks. It was the tallest structure in China until 2007 and offers fantastic panoramic views of this bustling metropolis.

 

Practical Information for this holiday

Currency
Chinese Yuan (¥) – pronounced ‘wan’
Local Time
Ireland/UK Time +8 hours
Passport
Irish/UK citizens are required to obtain a visa before travelling to China. Visas cannot be obtained on arrival. Passport must be valid for at least 6 months after the duration of the intended stay. Click here for more information on visas for China. 
Airport

The airport in Beijing is located 28km northeast of the city. Shanghai Airport is located approx. 30km from Shanghai City Centre.

Climate

China’s spring is mostly dry. In July and August the weather turns hot and humid. Autumn is the nicest time of the year with many warm, clear days and usually little wind.

Food & Drink
Chinese food eaten in China is much fresher and more unusual than you would get in your local takeaway. Peking duck, Cantonese beef soup, fried rice, and pork noodles are just some of the specialities served here and this is a fantastic opportunity to try tasty regional dishes as you travel. If you prefer to stick to more familiar dishes, there is an abundance of western restaurants in Beijing and Shanghai.
Vaccinations & Health
Vaccinations may be required before your departure - please consult with your GP or Tropical Medical Bureau. Larger cities in China may at times experience poor air quality. If you have a respiratory condition it is advisable to discuss this with your medical practitioner prior to booking your holiday.
Average Prices for Region
  • Coffee: 27 ¥
  • Beer: 11 ¥
  • Glass of wine: 13 ¥
  • Meal: 28 ¥
  • Soft Drink: 4 ¥
  • Bottled Water: 4.50 ¥

 

€1 = approx 7.5 ¥

Packing List
  • Your valid passport
  • Sun cream
  • A 220v plug adaptor
  • A small backpack
  • A sun hat
  • Comfortable shoes
  • Camera
Recommended Reading

Falling Leaves by Adeline Yen Mah

Empress Orchid by Anchee Min

Empire of the Sun by J.G. Ballard

 

Trip Itinerary - Day by day

Day 1 - Travel to China

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Morning

Day 1 - Travel to China

Depart for Beijing.

Day 2 - Arrive in Beijing

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Afternoon

Arrive in Beijing

Upon landing in Beijing, you will be met by our local representative in the arrivals area of the airport before being transferred to your hotel.

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Evening

At Leisure

Once you arrive at your hotel, you will have the remainder of the day at leisure to relax and enjoy the amenities at your hotel.

Day 3 - Christmas Eve: Tiananmen Square & Forbidden City

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Morning

Tiananmen Square & The Forbidden City

After breakfast on day 3 you will visit Tiananmen Square and the Palace Museum, also known as the Forbidden City. Tiananmen Square is one of the largest squares in the world and has been the site of many historic rallies and protests. The square is home to many important buildings and monuments and is separated from the Forbidden City by Tiananmen Gate.  The Forbidden City was the Chinese Imperial Palace during the Ming Dynasty and served as the home of emperors for almost 500 years. It is now under the charge of the Palace Museum and houses a huge collection of porcelain, paintings, jewels and sculptures. Impressive imperial gardens and some important shrines surround the site.   

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Afternoon

Qianmen & Wangfujing Walking Street

In the afternoon you will visit Qianmen Street, which is one of the oldest pedestrian streets in China. This ornate shopping street has a mix of Chinese and Western shops and eateries, the most famous of which is Quanjude Chinese Restaurant, which sells over 2 million of its trademark Peking Roast Duck every year. You will also take a trip down Wangfujing Walking Street, a famous pedestrian street in Beijing filled with wonderful food and souvenirs. 

Day 4 - Christmas Day: Great Wall, Jade Factory & Sacred Way

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Morning

The Great Wall

Enjoy a full day excursion to the Great Wall of China, the Jade Factory and the Sacred Way leading to the Ming Tombs. The ‘pièce de résistance’ of this holiday, the Great Wall dates back to the 7th century BC in certain sections, and is more than 20,000 miles long. Snaking along lush mountains, this wall was employed by Emperor Qin to protect the first unified kingdom of China. 

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Afternoon

Jade Factory & Sacred Way

In the afternoon, enjoy a visit to the Jade Factory, where you will see jewellery and sculptures with jade stones being carved, before finishing your day at the Sacred Way. Home to the Ming Dynasty Tombs, thirteen emperors are buried here, and you will begin this tour by walking through a magnificent gateway. 

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Evening

Christmas Dinner

Relax this evening and enjoy Christmas dinner, with Mongolian Hot Pot and free flowing beer and soft drinks at a local restaurant.

Day 5 - Summer Palace, Beijing Zoo & Olympic Village

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Morning

Summer Palace

Enjoy a full day excursion to see the Summer Palace, Beijing Zoo and the Olympic Village.  Featuring extensive gardens, the Summer Palace is a magnificent building perched on the edge of a lake, and was once the destination of choice for vacationing emperors and dowager empresses. 

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Afternoon

Beijing Zoo & Olympic Village

You will also enjoy a visit to Beijing Zoo to see stunning Ming Dynasty architecture and an impressive collection of animals including panda bears, before seeing the impressive park that hosted the 2008 Olympics.  Later on, enjoy some free time for shopping or sightseeing. 

Day 6 - Lama Temple, Sanlitun Village, Yaxiu Market & Temple of Heaven

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Morning

Lama Temple & Rickshaw Tour

In the morning you will take a trip to the Lama or Yonghe Temple, which is a monastery of Tibetan Buddhism. It contains a 26 metre tall wooden statue of the Maitreya Buddha and unique bronze statues of the Buddhas of the Three Ages. After, you will be taken on a rickshaw tour of an old town hutong area, which contains narrow streets, ornate houses and gardens. Here you will learn some Chinese Calligraphy with a local family.  

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Afternoon

Sanlitun Village, Yaxiu Market & Temple of Heaven

After lunch you will have time for shopping at the Sanlitun Village shopping centre, which is a huge complex of shops and restaurants. You will also visit the Yaxiu Market, which is a silk and cloth market and a tourist’s favourite for faux designer bargains.  After you will visit the Temple of Heaven, which is a complex of religious buildings symbolising the relationship between earth and heaven. Originally, it functioned as a vast stage for solemn rites and rituals. All of the buildings in the park, including the Round Altar, the Imperial Vault of Heaven, and the Hall of Prayer for Good Harvests, represent conversations between the gods and mortals. 

Day 7 - Travel to Xi'an

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Morning

Depart for Xi'an

Today, you will transfer by high-speed train from Beijing to Xi’an. 

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Afternoon

Arrive Xi'an

After checking into your hotel in Xi'an you will have the afternoon at leisure.

Day 8 - Terracotta Army

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Morning

Terracotta Army

On this full day excursion to this wonderful UNESCO World Heritage site, you can gaze upon a truly remarkable collection of life size terracotta figures of warriors and horses, arranged in battle formations. Forms of funeral art, these figures were buried with the emperor Qin Shi Huang in 210–209 BC, to protect him in his afterlife.

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Afternoon

At Leisure

After lunch, you will have free time for shopping and sightseeing.

Day 9 - At Leisure

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Full Day

At Leisure

Enjoy a day of relaxation, sightseeing and shopping in Xi’an. Your guide will be happy to suggest places of interest to see and things to do.

Day 10 - Travel to Shanghai

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Morning

Depart for Shanghai

Depart by internal flight from Xi’an to Shanghai, for a two night stay. You will then travel on the world's fastest train (Maglev) to Shanghai city centre, where you will take a lift to the top of the Oriental Pearl Tower, offering panoramic views of the surrounding city.

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Afternoon

Arrive Shanghai

Check into your hotel, afternoon at leisure.

Day 11 - Shanghai City Tour

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Shanghai City Tour

Morning

This half day excursion will introduce you to fascinating Old Shanghai, including beautiful Yu Garden, the old town of Shanghai, the bustling Xintiandi Street and Shikumen Open House Museum.

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Afternoon

At Leisure

Enjoy an afternoon at leisure, for independent sightseeing and shopping in the city.

Day 12 - Return Home

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Evening

Return Home

You will be transferred to Shanghai Airport for your flight home, with guide assistance for your overnight flight home. 

Day 13 - Arrive Home

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Afternoon

Arrive Home

Arrive home from this holiday of a lifetime. 

* Please note that the order of your excursions on the itinerary above is provisional and subject to change

Customer reviews

Hotel & accommodation available for this trip

Penta Hotel Beijing 4 Star

Located in the centre of Beijing’s business district, the Penta Hotel is the perfect location from which to explore the city. The hotel is decorated in a modern and comfortable style and you can enjoy the casual and laid back atmosphere in the bar and café located in the lobby. &... read more read more read more

Located in the centre of Beijing’s business district, the Penta Hotel is the perfect location from which to explore the city. The hotel is decorated in a modern and comfortable style and you can enjoy the casual and laid back atmosphere in the bar and café located in the lobby.  

Hotel address
Penta Hotel Beijing
3-18 Chong Wen Men Wai Street,
Dongcheng,
100062 Beijing,
View available dates for this hotel

Tianyu Gloria Hotel Xi'an 4

Tianyu Gloria Plaza Hotel Xian is conveniently located in the thriving commercial and shopping district. It is only a 15-minute walk from the hotel to the city centre and close to most attractive sites of Xian. All guest rooms are designed to give you maximum comfort, privacy and... read more read more read more

Tianyu Gloria Plaza Hotel Xian is conveniently located in the thriving commercial and shopping district. It is only a 15-minute walk from the hotel to the city centre and close to most attractive sites of Xian.

All guest rooms are designed to give you maximum comfort, privacy and relaxation throughout your stay.

Hotel address
Tianyu Gloria Hotel Xi'an
15 Yanta North Road, Xi’an 710054
Shaanxi Province, P.R. China

Xian
View available dates for this hotel

Grand Mercure Shanghai Century Park 5

This chic hotel is located in the commercial and cultural centre of Pudong. It is located close to the Shanghai New International Expo Centre, situated near to Thumb Plaza, a lifestyle mall offering an excellent selection of shops and entertainment venues. For those looking to ta... read more read more read more

This chic hotel is located in the commercial and cultural centre of Pudong. It is located close to the Shanghai New International Expo Centre, situated near to Thumb Plaza, a lifestyle mall offering an excellent selection of shops and entertainment venues. For those looking to take some time off, after an exciting day, the  hotel's outdoor pool, fitness centre, and Vita Spa are an ideal break spot. For those looking to wander the city, it is conveniently located near the city’s transportation system, including the Pudong Airport. 

Hotel address
Grand Mercure Shanghai Century Park
1199 Ying Chun Road
Pudong

Shanghai
View available dates for this hotel

* Some hotel facilities may be seasonally operated or under maintenance and therefore unavailable at the time of your stay. Charges may apply for certain facilities.

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Price, taxes, flight times & availability are subject to change. E&OE. Price based on per person, sharing. Single Supplement cost may apply.

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  • Single Supplement from €149.00
  • Baggage from €40.00
  • Insurance from €12.50

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Why us?

  • We’ve done the research for you, creating perfectly planned itineraries
  • Outstanding value for money – Flights, transfers, accommodation and excursions included in nearly all our tours
  • We are experienced and dedicated to your experience
  • No holiday surcharges –
    guaranteed

Our guides

  • Friendly and welcoming everywhere you go
  • Local experts, passionate about their area
  • Take pride in making your holiday memorable
  • Innovative itineraries with amazing excursions

 

Our promise

  • To remember your holiday is a very precious time
  • To go the extra mile for you, our customers
  • To describe our holidays in an honest manner
  • To use your feedback to continually improve our service

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  • We are a privately owned business and have been around for over 20 years
  • Licenced by the Commission for Aviation Regulation, TO 163 & TA 0692