Essential China Tours for Senior Travelers

10 Days Beijing-Xi’an-Guilin-Yangshuo-Shanghai

Confused by the complicated procedure of the China tour? It can be easier than you imagine! With China Tour Star’s Hassle-Free Service, you can sit back and leave the troubles to us. This 10 days China tour for seniors will help you appreciate the highlights of China. Besides the famous historical sites like Terra Cotta Army and charming natural scenery like Li River, we will also arrange comfortable vehicles and nice hotels for you. That will help you get a nice rest during or after the whole day tour. The most important is our itinerary is flexible which means you can decide when will you depart the next day. If you need a wheelchair or a stick, please also tell us. We are willing to provide you all the things you need. No more hesitating! Today is always the best day to reserve the tour.

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Day by Day Itinerary
Day 1 Beijing Arrival
You will arrive in Beijing and we will take you to the hotel for a good rest

Welcome to Beijing, the capital of China! Your amazing China 10-day tour will start here. You will arrive at Beijing Capital International Airport or Beijing Daxing International Airport, which is about 30 kilometers (45 minutes) and 48 kilometers (1 hour) respectively away from central Beijing. Our guide will hold your name sign and wait for you, and then transfer you to your hotel. Then you will check in at the hotel and have a good rest. 

Beijing locates in north China, neighboring Tianjin Municipality and Hebei Province. As one of the time-honored ancient cities, Beijing welcomes about 4.4 million international tourists every year.

Day 2 Beijing
Tian’anmen Square, Forbidden City, Summer Palace

This morning your tour will start from Tian’anmen Square, the largest city center square in the world. It equals to the size of 61 FIFA football fields and can accommodate 1 million people or so to get together to celebrate the big and important Chinese festivals or hold a grand assembly. Since the founding of the People’s Republic of China in 1949, Tian’anmen Square has experienced many military parades, which witnessed the rise and revitalization of the Chinese nation. The flag-raising ceremony at Tian’anmen Square is very famous at home and abroad. Day after day, the National Flag Guards in Tian’anmen Square raise the national flag at the same time as the sun rises. If you witness the flag-raising ceremony, you will be overwhelmed by the solemn scene.  

After walking through the Tian’anmen Gate, you will visit the Forbidden City (closed each Monday) located in the heart of Beijing, which is also called the Palace Museum. We will guide you to explore the thousands of years of Chinese history and culture behind the Forbidden City. Now let us start! Going through the Meridian Gate (Wu men), you will enter the Forbidden City. Your guide will tell you many interesting stories that had happened in the imperial place for the 24 emperors of China. And you will be amazed by the huge number of rooms. It is said that there are 9999 rooms and a half in the Forbidden City. Although it is a legend, the actual number of the rooms still reaches 7000 according to scientific investigation. So you will understand why the Forbidden City is listed as the top of the Five Great Palace in the world. You will spend some time here and then will go through the Gate of Divine Prowess (Shenwu men) to leave the Forbidden City.

After lunch, you will go to visit the Summer Palace, which is also called the Royal Garden Museum. It is located in the northwest of Beijing, 15 kilometers away from the Forbidden City. Built by Emperor Qianlong of the Qing Dynasty (1636-1912) to satisfy his mother, it was completed in 1764. It is famous for one of the spots, the 728-meter Long Corridor, which allows emperors to enjoy the garden view even on rainy or snowy days. When you stand on the Long Corridor, don’t miss out on the paintings on the corridor. It is rich in content and very vivid. Today’s journey ends, and then you will be transferred to the hotel. Hope you have a nice rest.

Optional Activity: If you want to go shopping and eat delicious food, you must visit Wangfujing Street in your free time. As one of the symbols of Beijing’s prosperous commerce, it is the most well-known shopping street combined with modern and traditional elements. Located near the city center in Dongcheng District, there are different types of popular stores or markets for your choice. For instance, if you would like to buy some traditional Chinese hats, clothing, and shoes, you can go to some stores, such as Shengxifu Hat Store, Tongshenghe Shoes Store, and Ruifuxiang Silk & Cotton Shop. Wait! I guess you cannot wait to know what kind of amazing food you going to eat. Wangfujing Snack Street welcomes you. It is a famous Chinese Snack that gathers delicious and popular food in Beijing and other regions. Here, you can taste some special snacks, such as roast mutton cubes on a skewer, sugar-coated figurine, Glutinous Rice Ball, and so on. 

Tian’anmen Square
Summer Palace
Day 3 Beijing
Ming Tombs, Mutianyu Great Wall, Bird’s Nest, Water Cube

Today’s journey is still in Beijing. But we will go to some scenic areas in suburban Beijing.

This morning, our first destination is the Ming Tombs which is in the northwest of Beijing City. It will take us about 1 hour and 10 minutes (50 kilometers) to arrive here. From its name, you can know that it is a tomb complex of the Ming Dynasty (1368-1644). And yes, 13 emperors of the Ming Dynasty and many concubines were buried here. And today, we will visit the Chang Tomb. Built-in the seventh year of Yongle (1409) in the Ming Dynasty, the Chang Tomb, covering about 120,000 square meters, is the largest and the best-preserved mausoleum and one of the most important tourist attractions in the Ming tombs. It is the royal tomb of Zhu Di, the third emperor of the Ming Dynasty, and his empress. Here, you should not miss the lifelike bronze statue of Zhu Di, with the decoration of nine dragons. Dragon has always been regarded as the most powerful creature in the world in ancient China. And the number nine was considered as the largest number at that time. So, you can see the nine-dragon decoration is full of meanings. 

After lunch, we will go to the second destination, the Mutianyu Great Wall. We will drive northeast for about 1 hour and 15 minutes (48 kilometers) from the Ming Tombs. Located in Huairou District, Beijing, the Mutianyu Great Wall enjoys the reputation of “the best section of Great Wall with the most magnificent scenery”. The mountains in the scenic area are overlapping, with a vegetation coverage rate of over 90%. It, 5,400 meters in length, is the longest section of the Great Wall in China. Here, you can experience the domestic advanced cable car for climbing the Great Wall, and the toboggan is a good way for going down the Great Wall. Former US President Bill Clinton and many other foreign leaders have visited the Mutianyu Great Wall.

After that, we will drive back to the city center. On the way back to the hotel, you can get off the car to take photos with the Bird’s Nest (the Beijing National Stadium) and the Water Cube (the Beijing National Aquatics Center). The Bird’s Nest is located in the southern part of the central Beijing Olympic Park. It covers an area of 2,040 square kilometers, with a construction area of 258,000 square meters. It equals the area of 36 football fields and can accommodate 91,000 spectators. In 2008, it is the main stadium for the Beijing Olympic Games. The Water Cube was the official site for the 2008 Olympic swimming competitions. And, it looks like a giant blue cube, which blends modern technology with traditional Chinese culture.

Today’s journey comes to an end, we will go back to the hotel. Hope you have a nice rest.

Dinner Option: If you do not know where to have dinner, a Peking Roast Duck dinner will round off your one-day Beijing tour. With a history of about 1,500 years, Peking Roast Duck is a royal dish in the past. The chief will slice the duck up beside your table, and maybe you feel confused about how to eat it. Do not worry, the guide will help you to enjoy it authentically. The best way to eat the duck is to take a pancake in one hand, then with another hand holding chopsticks to pick up a slice of duck and coat it in the sauce. Then, spread the sauce onto the pancake using the duck, and add some more slices of duck and some cucumber and green onion. Then roll the pancake tightly and eat it all together. The wonderful taste will make you have it again and again.

Water Cube
Bird Nest
Day 4 BeijingXi'an
Temple of Heaven, From Beijing to Xi'an by train

This morning, you will visit the Temple of Heaven, which lies in south Beijing, with an area of about 2.73 million square meters. Since its set-up in the Ming Dynasty (1420), it was rebuilt several times during the emperors Qianlong (1739-1796) and Guangxu (1875-1908) periods of the Qing Dynasty. In the past, it functioned as the place for the emperors to worship the God of Heaven and pray for a good harvest. Now, it has turned to be a public park for locals to do morning exercise. If you are lucky, you will meet some Tai Chi enthusiasts, and they may be willing to teach you some Tai Chi movements. And you will have lots of fun in it. 

And then, your guide will take you to have lunch. Beijing’s journey will come to an end, and we will go to visit another ancient and modern city, Xi’an. We have booked the ticket on the estimated train G349 15:13/19:42 for you. After you arrive in Xi’an, the tour guide will take you to the reserved hotel. Have a good rest and your wonderful Xi’an tour will start tomorrow. 

Temple of Heaven
Temple of Heaven
Day 5 Xi’an
Terra Cotta Warriors and Horses Museum, Big Wild Goose Pagoda, Great Mosque

From now on, our trip to Xi’an officially starts. You will get a full-day tour today, and it will be a feast for your eyes as well.

This morning, our guide will take you to visit the Terra Cotta Warriors and Horses Museum which is located in the east of Xi’an. It will take us 45 minutes (43 kilometers) to arrive at the destination from the hotel. The Terra Cotta Warriors and Horses Museum is built based on the subordinate tombs of Emperor Qin Shihuang’s mausoleum and specialized in relic display. Qin Shihuang is the first emperor in China. With a history of more than 2000 years old, these terra cotta armies stand unwaveringly, aiming to protect Emperor Qin Shihuang’s mausoleum. It is almost impossible for you to imagine that a warrior was totally like a real man with a simulation of human skin color when they were just excavated. 

After enjoying your lunch, you will visit the Big Wild Goose Pagoda. As the symbol of thriving religious development in the Tang Dynasty (618-907), the Big Wild Goose Pagoda is one of the well-preserved ancient buildings and it is a holy place for storing Buddhist scriptures and sermons. It sits in the southern suburb of Xi’an City, about 7 kilometers from the downtown of the city. Apart from its charming Buddhist culture, you will be amazed by its marvelous architectural style. The seven-story pagoda was built with layers of bricks without any cement. Even though, it is still very stable and solid. The grand body of the pagoda with its solemn appearance, simple but appealing style, and aesthetic design is indeed a good example of traditional Chinese architecture.

Then you will visit the Great Mosque, which is the largest mosque in Xi’an. Located at No. 30 Huajue Lane in the center of Xi’an, it serves as an important place for the sizable Hui minority that resides in northwestern China. And it was added to the UNESCO Islamic Heritage List in 1985. With an area of 6,000 square meters, the whole complex can be divided into four courtyards. You will enter the first courtyard of the Great Mosque through the wooden arch that is nine meters high. The soaring arch is decorated with glaze-covered tiles, which can be traced back to the seventeenth century. When you notice a stone arch with two steles on both sides, which are inscribed with famous calligraphic writing, you will enter the second courtyard. Then you will come to the hall in the third courtyard, where you can see more time-honored steles. Finally, you will come to a large prayer hall, which can accommodate over a thousand prayers. 

Option: If you are not tired, you could go to Muslim Street, a well-known snack street which attracts a large number of tourists at home and abroad every year.

Big Wild Goose Pagoda
Terracotta Warriors and Horses Museum
Day 6 Xi’anGuilin
Ancient City Wall, from Xi’an to Guilin by flight

This morning, we will visit the last destination in Xi’an. Located in the downtown area of Xi’an City, the Ancient City Wall, the extremely well-preserved city wall, is a wonderful testimony to the engineering and construction skills of the ancient Chinese people. The Ancient City Wall built in the 14th century during the Ming Dynasty is one of the must-visit landmarks of Xi’an. It stands 12 meters in height, 15-18 meters thick at the bottom, and 13.7 kilometers in length. The City Wall stretches around the old city and divides the city into two parts, the inner part, and the outer part. Walking on the city wall, you will see the surrounding traditional Chinese residential houses and buildings. 

Lunch is not included, and you can enjoy food as you wish at the airport. This afternoon, you will say goodbye to Xi’an and head to Guilin. You will take the estimated flight CA1225 18:25/20:35 to Guilin. After arrival in Guilin, your Guilin guide will pick you up at the airport and transfer you to the hotel.

City Wall
City Wall
Day 7 GuilinYangshuoGuilin
From Guilin to Yangshuo by ferry, Li River, Li River Cruise, Yangshuo West Street, from Yangshuo to Guilin by bus

Today’s journey starts! This morning, we will take the Li River Cruise to go to Yangshuo county in the south of Guilin city. 

Tips: it will spend four hours to arrive at Yangshuo, and please get ready for your needs. Lunch will be on the cruise.

Now, let us enjoy the breathtaking scenery of the Li River. Situated in Guangxi Province in south China, it is one of the most spectacular destinations in China. Spanning roughly 80 kilometers (50 miles), the Li River runs through the heart of Guangxi, connecting the beautiful downtown Guilin with the riverside town of Yangshuo. Astonishing, thrilling, sumptuous, and all that you can think of. Even all these exclaims put together fail to draw the sheer magnificence of the Li River. Companied by millions of years of water erosion and weathering, tens of thousands of karst mountains surround the Li River and its connected cities are the oldest and most beautiful natural wonders in China. We will enjoy our lunch on the cruise ship, while we are amazed by the breathtaking scenery. Then, we will disembark at Yangshuo County.

Following that, in the afternoon, we will visit Yangshuo West Street. Located in the center of the ancient town of Yangshuo, it is a pedestrian street about 8 meters wide and 800 meters long. With a history of more than 1,400 years, it is the oldest and most prosperous street in Yangshuo. There are many well-preserved ancient buildings, such as Ming Dynasty City Walls, inscriptions, ancient temples, ancient pavilions, former residences of celebrities, and memorial halls. Once upon a time, the revolutionist Sun Yat-sen gave a speech here. And the famous artist Xu Beihong also lived here. As the most famous sightseeing in Yangshuo, leaders of more than 150 countries have left their footprints here.

Today’s journey ends here, and then let us drive back to Guilin.

Option: “Beer Fish” in Yangshuo is a famous local special taste. If you prefer a strong flavor, you cannot miss it! The Yangshuo Beer Fish is made of fresh big carp from the Li River, which is first cooked with raw tea oil produced from the mountainous area of Yangshuo, and then braised with premium beer produced in Guilin. The fish is spicy and delicious, without the fishy smell. The aroma of beer can make your mouth water. 

Li river
Yangshuo west street
Day 8 GuilinShanghai
From Guilin to Shanghai by flight

Today, you will say goodbye to Guilin and head to Shanghai. You will take the estimated flight FM9350 13:35/16:05 to Shanghai. After arrival in Shanghai, your Shanghai guide will pick you up and transfer you to the hotel. Along the way, our guide will give you a brief introduction to Shanghai. Situated on the banks of the Yangtze River Delta in eastern China, Shanghai is the largest city in China and the eighth-largest city in the world. A total number of 18.7 million people live and work here, including a transient population of 2 million. Widely regarded as the citadel of China’s modern economy, the city also serves as one of the most important cultural, industrial, and communications centers of China. 

Lunch is not included, but your guide is happy to give you some suggestions to taste different local delicious food. We do not plan for your afternoon, so you can prepare for tomorrow’s tour and have a good rest.

Day 9 Shanghai
Yu Garden, Jade Buddha Temple, Shanghai Tower, Nanjing Road, the Bund

Today, we will take a full-day tour of Shanghai and explore its major attractions. In the morning, we take you straight to the Yu Garden (closed each Monday) built in 1559 by an official of the Ming Dynasty to please his father. There are many sightseeing spots in the garden, such as the Yule Pavilion, the Hexu Hall, the Wanhua Chamber, the Exquisite Jade Rock, and the Dongtianfudi Pavilion. When you visit the garden, you will be impressed by its large size, delicate carvings, and artistic rockeries. This true masterpiece of ancient Chinese landscape architecture has become a popular attraction for visitors from both home and abroad, and has been one of the major historical and cultural sites protected at the national level. 

After taking a pleasant stroll around the garden, we move onto the nearby Jade Buddha Temple, an important Buddhist Temple in Shanghai to get a glimpse of Buddhism in China. This time-honored temple contains two jade Buddha sculptures, giving justice as to why it is called Jade Buddha Temple. Besides the Buddhas statues, you will appreciate in the temple, the vegetarian meal is also famous here. If you are interested, you can try the mushroom noodles here.

After lunch, you will go to visit the Shanghai Tower. It is located in Pudong, with Shanghai World Financial Center to the east and Jin Mao Tower to the north. The tower ranks as China’s tallest building and second in the world. Looking at it as a whole, you will find out that the exterior of the building spirals upward like a snake. It twists about one degree per floor to offset the wind effect at a higher altitude. 

After that, you will visit Nanjing Road. It is the earliest commercial street established after Shanghai opened its port. It starts from the Bund in the east and ends at Yan’an West Road in the west. It spans Jing’an and Huangpu districts, with a total length of 5.5 kilometers. It is divided into east and west sections by Tibet Middle Road. This is a treasure land where thousands of businessmen gather, a window for Shanghai to open to the outside world, and a paradise for shoppers around the world. The roadside is full of various time-honored shops and shopping malls. On every holiday, it will be much more crowded and bustling. If you want to taste some local snacks, I will recommend the Shendacheng cakes and pastries store. The Sweet Green Rice Ball is the most popular food in the store. 

At last, your Shanghai tour guide will take you on a leisure walk on the Bund (also known as Waitan). As one of the most popular landmarks of Shanghai, for a century, the Bund has been one of the most recognizable symbols and the pride of Shanghai. The 52 classical revival buildings with different architectural styles along the Bund perform like a living museum of the colonial history of the 1800s. The Bund is 1.5 kilometers long, starting from Yan’an East Road in the south, Waibaidu Bridge (also known as Garden Bridge of Shanghai) on Suzhou River in the north, Huangpu River in the east, and financial and foreign trade institutions in old Shanghai in the west. 

Optional Activity: If you are interested in the night view of the Huangpu River, you must take part in Huangpu River Night Cruise. In addition to enjoying the bridge across the Huangpu River, you can also enjoy the famous colonial buildings on the Bund on the west coast, as well as the unique Peace Hotel with a green pyramid roof and the Customs Building with a big bell tower. On the eastern bank, you will see a bustling metropolis full of modern skyscrapers and towering buildings, such as Jinmao Tower, the Oriental Pearl TV Tower, and the Shanghai World Financial Center. 

The bund
Nanjing Road
Day 10 Shanghai Departure
You will arrive in Hong Kong and we will take you to the hotel for a good rest

Today, we will take you to the airport according to your flight and you will fly back to your sweet home. Our service ends here. We are looking forward to serving you again in other cities of China!

Option: If you have extra time before leaving Shanghai, you can go to the Tianzifang Market, a lane full of various popular stores. Apart from creative shops, galleries, and photography exhibitions, there are kinds of coffee bars. In the idle afternoon, with the cool breeze in the lane, the bright sunshine is spread on the ground, and the air is full of coffee fragrance. What a nice day!

Author: Yu Zhang

Proofreader: Betsy He

This tour ends here
Tour Map
City Five Star hotel list Four Star hotel list
Beijing Sunworld Dynasty Hotel Beijing Wangfujing Sunworld Hotel Wangfujing
Xi'an Tianyu Gloria Grand Hotel Xi'an Sunworld Dynasty Hotel
Guilin Lijiang Waterfall Hotel Guilin Bravo Hotel
Shanghai Ocean Hotel Shanghai Courtyard by Marriott Shanghai Central
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