Tea represents a wonderful beverage originally produced in China about 4,000 years ago, and it is closely related to the everyday life of the Chinese people. Do you want to know about the Chinese tea culture? Our China Tea Tour will be certainly the best choice. It enables you to enjoy a wonderful tea ceremony and to have a better understanding of Chinese tea. For example, you will enjoy a tea ceremony at Yixin Tea House, and go to Wuyi Mountain with a sound ecological environment to know the history of Wuyi Mountain oolong tea trees. Of course, our Chinese tea tour includes historical and cultural sites, such as the Forbidden City, Summer Palace, Chang Tomb, Juyongguan Pass Great Wall, and Nanjing Tulou. On top of that, engaging natural landscapes in China are also included in your journey, such as Gulangyu Island, Tianyou Peak, Tiger Roaring Rock, and West Lake. In a word, our 12 Days China Green Tea Tour will never fail your aspiration. Come on and choose us, this journey in China will be in your memory forever.
Welcome to Beijing! As an international, dynamic metropolis that belongs to yesterday, today, and tomorrow, its glamour lies more than anything else in its leading role in new trends as well as in its vigor and vitality. When you arrive at the Beijing International Airport, you will see your friendly guide with a pick-up card of your name at the airport. Afterward, your guide will take you to the hotel where you can have a good rest.
Today, your journey in Beijing begins. The first destination is Tian’anmen Square. Located on the central axis of Beijing City, it is the largest city square in the world, which is extremely spectacular. People often say no one can visit Tian’anmen Square without marveling at its two pairs of Marble Pillars. Take the Marble Pillar outside Tian’anmen Gate as an example, its upper part is carved with a coiled dragon and auspicious clouds, and the area near its top is crossed by a horizontal cloud-shaped stone. On its top sits a mythical monster facing south called Hou (one of the nine sons of the dragon in legend), which means that the emperor was expected to care about state affairs as much as possible according to historical data.
Next, you will visit the Forbidden City (Closed on Monday). Also known as the Palace Museum, it represents the most splendid palace in Beijing. Covering an area of 720,000 square meters, the Forbidden City is mainly composed of the Outer Court and the Inner Court. The Outer Court was built for the emperor to run state fairs, where the Hall of Supreme Harmony, the Hall of Middle Harmony, and the Hall of Preserving Harmony stand. The Inner Court was built for the imperial family to live in, where the Palace of Heavenly Purity, the Hall of Union, and the Palace of Earthly Tranquility stand. There are more than 9,000 rooms in the Forbidden City. Do you have an idea about how large this number is? If a person stayed for one night in each room, he would spend over 27 years sleeping in all the rooms. Aside from its architecture, the unique application of colors in the Forbidden City will amaze you, with yellow and vermilion as its thematic colors. Especially on a bright day, the scenery of glistening golden tiles on top of red buildings under the blue sky seems an oil painting.
With lunch, it’s time to enjoy a Tea Ceremony at Yixin Tea House for about half an hour. Just as coffee culture is crucial to western customs, it is tea culture that influences China’s local customs. Tea Ceremony is considered the art of tea in China, mainly containing the preparation and presentation of tea. Chinese people believe that a good tea drinker should observe the color, aroma, taste, and shape (the shape of tea leaves) of the tea. And a fine cup of tea depends on the water, tea leaves, tea set, and fire. Therefore, the tea art performances will show you how to make a perfect cup of tea and how to savor tea. Besides, during the performance, you can understand that a cup of refreshing tea can not only relieve you from thirst but also satisfy your spiritual needs, giving you a comfy feeling.
Today’s last tourist spot is Summer Palace. As an imperial garden built in the Qing Dynasty (1636-1912), it is an ensemble of lakes, gardens, and palaces. Hall of Joyful Longevity in the Summer Palace, was where Empress Dowager Cixi lived. Its courtyard is full of a variety of beautiful flowers, such as magnolia, begonia, peonies, etc. Facing Kunming Lake, the Hall of Joyful Longevity is alleged to be the best place to live in and to appreciate the fabulous views of this imperial garden. It has four windows respectively in its four walls, through which the sights of different places are integrated, thereby each window view becoming the equivalent of a picturesque painting.
Starting a day with breakfast, you will be driven northwest for about one hour to Chang Tomb of the Ming Tombs by car, about 50 kilometers away from the Forbidden City. As a royal mausoleum, Chang Tomb was where Zhu Di, the third emperor of the Ming Dynasty (1368-1644), and his wife were buried. Covering an area of 120,000 square meters, it is the largest tomb of the Ming Tombs. Do you know why the largest tomb was named Chang Tomb? First of all, Chinese pinyin “Chang” means respecting eldership. Zhu Di, an emperor who directed the construction of the Forbidden City and the Ming Tombs, boasted mighty power. Therefore, he hoped to be respected after his death. Besides, in Chinese, “Chang” also has a meaning of repose in a grove. Zhu Di hoped that he could be in this tomb peaceful, watching his descendants continue to rule this land.
With lunch, let’s drive west for about an hour to Juyongguan Great Wall by car, about 50 kilometers away from Chang Tomb. Built in the Ming Dynasty, it is one section of the Great Wall. In ancient times, its purpose was to prevent the invasion of nomads from the north. Strategically located, Juyongguan Great Wall is dubbed as the most majestic Great Wall in ancient times. Entering the Great Wall, you will see a platform called Cloud Terrace carved with white marble. It looks like the clouds from far, hence its name. Of course, Juyongguan Pass Great Wall is never a monotonous long stretch of the wall. Instead, there are different defensive parts, including blockhouses, garrison towns, and beacon towers. You will marvel at its spectacularism and the wisdom of the ancient Chinese people when you see them!
After that, we will drive you southeast for about one hour to the hotel by car. On the way back, Water Cube and Bird Nest will be in your sight. We will stop the car there so that you can take photos of the two magnificent architectures.
A two-day journey in Beijing comes to an end. Next, you will start your Xiamen tour. After breakfast, you will take the estimated flight ZH1809 09:30/12:25 to Xiamen, a city full of romance.
Upon your arrival, your guide will transfer you to the first tourist attraction in Xiamen, Huandao Road. As a must-go place with engaging scenery, it is also set as a section of the International Marathon Track, with a length of 43 kilometers. Dotted with blue sea, golden beach, green grassland, red track, and grey highroad, Huandao road is crowned as “a road with five colors”. Walking on this quiet path, you will be captivated by the breach nearby, and the sea view in the distance against the bright sky so that you don’t want to go away. You can also choose to rent a bicycle to ride, enjoying the feeling that the sea breeze blows on your face along the way.
The next destination is Nanputuo Temple. Facing the sea with sparkling waves, the temple covers an area of 25.8 hectares, with a construction area of 21,270 square meters. All the architecture in the temple is decorated with apricot tiles. Besides, the whole temple complex is surrounded by stone walls which unite the buildings in the temple as integrity. Inside the temple stands the Sutra Pavilion, the highest double-layered building along the central axis. On its first floor is the Dharma Hall, where the monks expound the texts of Buddhism. The second floor is the Jade Buddha Hall, which houses 28 Burmese Jade Buddhas, as well as tens of thousands of Buddhist scriptures.
On the back of Nanputuo Temple is Wulao Peak, with an altitude of 185 meters. “Wu” in Chinese means “five” and “lao” in Chinese means “old”. As five hilltops look like five old men shrouded by clouds, hence getting its name. Walking from its foot to its top may cost you about one hour. On your way to the peak, many viewing platforms are provided, where you can see Xiamen University, and the bird’s-eye-view of Xiamen city is accessible.
Today, it’s time to take you west for about two and a half hours to Nanjing Tulou by car, about 154 kilometers away from the urban area of Xiamen. Also known as Fujian Tulou, it is a collection of a mixed assortment of tulous that are round, semi-circular, square, quadrangular, etc., each of which has its characteristic. All tulous here follow the style of traditional Chinese dwelling.
Tianluokong Tulou Cluster, which used to serve as a settlement of the Hakkas, consists of a square tulou, an oval tulou, and three tulous that are rotunda in configuration. Among five tulous, the square one is in the center, surrounded by the other four. People call the five tulous “a soup and four dishes”. Besides, every tulou is equipped with a drainage system, which can keep itself safe in floods.
After lunch, you will visit Yuchang Building which has been standing here for over 700 years. There is a legend behind it. In the mid-Ming Dynasty, as five families with different surnames planned to jointly construct a five-layer building, they decided to serve meals for the building workers in turn. However, the five families failed to guarantee continuous meals. Suffering from tiredness and hunger, the workers became angry. Therefore, the substandard wedges that they made were installed into the building. At first, there was nothing different after its completion. However, with time passing by, the wooden pillars of the corridor began to tilt to the right, thereby causing the whole building to look skewed. Although it seems to be blown down in a gale, Yuchang Building keeps intact through natural disasters such as floods and earthquakes.
The next stop is Taxia Village. With mountains surrounded and a clear creek nearby, it covers an area of 5.68 square kilometers. In the village stands a renowned hall called Deyuan Hall. Built in the late Ming Dynasty and early Qing Dynasty, it represents one of the most complete ancient ancestral halls. Climbing up its steps, you will see numerous stone pillars embossed with a curled-up dragon in the clouds. In front of the ancestral hall is a semi-circular pond, on each side of which stand 12 dragon-shaped stone flagpoles. With a height of more than 10 meters, the flagpoles serve as a symbol of accomplishment, status, and glory.
Today’s last tourist spot is Chengqi Building. As “the King of tulou”, it is a 17th-century tulou, which consists of four concentric rings with an ancestral temple at its center. Taking the outer ring as an example, it serves as the main building that is 73 meters in diameter and four layers high. The ground floor is where kitchens are, the second floor is used to store grain, and the third and fourth layers are designed as living rooms. Entering the building, you will be surprised by the number of rooms in the Chengqi building, with 370 rooms in total. Besides, the pattern of the whole building was imprinted into a stamp styled by “Chinese Residences” in 1986. Since then, the Chengqi building has been enjoying worldwide fame.
Today, let’s continue to explore tourist attractions in Xiamen!
After breakfast, you will be driven to a pier where you will take a ferry to Gulangyu Island. Lying southeast of Xiamen, it is an island that is inextricably linked to music. “Gu” in Chinese means drum and “Lang” in Chinese means wave. When sea waves hit the reef, the sound of beating drums will be produced, hence its name. With over 200 pianos on this island, it is also nicknamed “the Island of Music”.
The first destination on the island is Sunlight Rock. As the peak on Gulangyu Island, it is one of the must-visit spots in Xiamen. Standing at its gate, you will see a giant grotto that is over 40 meters high. Its top is carved with Chinese characters. Through its gate, Sunlight Rock Temple will be in your sight. With a history of over 400 years, the temple is one of the four most renowned temples in Xiamen. Every morning, it is always the first to be bathed in the golden sunshine, hence name.
In the south of Gulangyu Island is Shuzhuang Garden. Built in 1913, it used to be a private villa. The whole garden mainly consists of the Canghai Garden and Bushan Garden. To evoke a sense of space, Shuzhuang garden uses a method of “borrowing a distant scene”. That means that the scenes of the slopes on the adjacent sea, the reefs in the bay, the tides rising or falling, and a seagull flying on the sea are all borrowed. It can enable you to look outside the garden so that a new and greater vista is available. On top of that, a feeling of spaciousness will be acquired, though you are in a physically small space.
After breakfast and checking out, let’s drive you to Xiamen North Railway Station where you take the estimated High-Speed Train G1754 08:14/11:23 to Nanping, a prefecture-level city in northwestern China’s Fujian Province.
When you arrive, your guide will pick you up at the train station and transfer you to Wuyi Mountain. Thanks to its good ecological environment, it is home to a wide array of rare species of fauna and flora. Wuyi Mountain tea with its unique fragrance, in particular, enjoys worldwide fame. Its history dates back to the Southern Dynasty (420-589). Besides, Wuyi Mountain is fraught with ancient Chinese cultural heritage. Since the Qin (212-207) and Han (202BC-220AD) Dynasties, Wuyi Mountain has been where the scholars of Taoism, Confucianism, and Buddhism lived.
No journey in Wuyi Mountain is complete without visiting Tianyou Peak (“tianyou” in Chinese means “enjoying oneself in a fairyland”). Located in the center of Wuyi Mountain, it is endowed with lush forests and strange rocks, with an altitude of 408.8 meters. With a gentle breeze blowing, white clouds surrounding the peak under the sunshine look like sparkling waves, giving you a feeling of being in a wonderland. Aside from the picturesque views of the peak, there are also gorgeous landscapes on the mountain. In spring and winter, many caves on the mountain teem with white clouds, some of which even spill out of the caves. Among these caves, the most famous one is called Yunwo which means the home of the clouds in Chinese.
Besides, there is a cave called Tea Cave. The tea leaves in this cave are always of high quality. About its origin, there is a legend. In ancient times, a man called Peng Zu took it as his duty to save the ill people. Once, with a scorching sun in the sky, he went up to the Wuyi Mountain to collect herbs. Unluckily, he fell from a cliff due to his tiredness, thereby passing out. At this moment, an immortal on a white crane came to him and saved his life. When Peng Zu woke up, he found himself in a cave and vaguely remembered that he was told that a tea tree in this cave could be the best medicine for curing all the diseases. When he returned to the village where he lived, he told his experience on the mountain to the villagers. Later, all the villagers went to the cave to check on this magical tea tree. Since then, the cave has been called the Tea Cave by the locals.
This morning, Dahongpao Scenic Area will be your first destination. Located on the Wuyi Mountain, it is renowned for being rich in Dahongpao tea (a kind of oolong tea), which allegedly has a unique aroma and amazing medical effect. Thus, Dahongpao tea is crowned as the “King of Tea”. There are six Dahongpao tea trees in this scenic area, which have a history of over 340 years old. Growing in the exceptionally favorable environment on the mountainside, each tea tree is equipped with a stone weir outside as protection. About Dahongpao tea (“Dahongpao” in Chinese means red robe), there is a legend. A long time ago, an empress contracted a severe disease. Having been treated with various precious medical herbs in the imperial palace, the empress could not recover. To save the empress’ life, the emperor ordered a soldier to go out for a cure. During the search, the soldier encountered an old man attacked by a tiger. At that moment, the brave soldier chased the tiger away with his sword so that the old man was rescued. To express his gratitude, the old man asked: “What could I do for you?” The soldier told the old man about the empress’ illness. Then the old man took him to the Wuyi Mountain to pick tea leaves with medical effect. The soldier brought the tea leaves back to the imperial palace and made them into a cup of tea. After drinking the tea, the empress magically recovered. As such, the emperor decided to reward the tea tree with a red robe so that the tree could protect from the cold weather. That is how this tea was called Dahongpao tea.
After appreciating Dahongpao tea, you will visit Water-Curtain Cave. As the largest cave in Wuyi Mountain, it not only boasts engaging scenery but also is a holy land for the Taoists. A clear spring on the top of the cave falls, forming a waterfall up to 80 meters high. Inside the cave, there are stone chairs for rest.
After lunch, Yixiantian Scenic Area will be your next destination, which is located at the southwest end of Wuyi Mountain. In this scenic area, there is an exceptional cave called Fuxi Cave. The cave is formed like a cliff split in half by an ax, and only a ray of sun light can shine into the cave. So how the crack is formed? Legend has it that Fuxi (a hero in Chinese legend and mythology) used a magical ax to split a cliff so that people who lived here could cross the mountain without climbing it. Inside the Fuxi Cave, the road is very narrow. At its most narrow point, it is just only 30 centimeters wide, through which only one person can pass. Along the road, you even need to use a flashlight and be carefully due to the craggedness and darkness of the cave. It will be a very special experience. Thus, never miss this adventure in Yixiantian Scenic Area.
The last spot today is Tiger Roaring Rock Scenic Area. It represents a wonderful place with unique springs and rocks, being 510 meters above sea level. There is a large cave in the Tiger Roaring Rock Scenic Area. When a gale passes through it, a tiger howling sound will be formed, filling the whole breadth of the valley where the cave is located. At the waist of the mountain is the Wuyi Mountain tea plantation. Walking on the path of the tea plantation, you will feel like you are in a wonderland, being strongly hit by the fragrance of tea leaves.
After that, you will be driven to Nanping Railway Station where you take the estimated High-Speed Train G1668 18:37/21:04 to Hangzhou East Station. Upon your arrival, your guide will take you to the hotel.
Today, let’s start the trip to Hangzhou. Firstly, you will take the West Lake Boat to enjoy the dreamy sceneries of West Lake, where countless painters and poets have been attracted throughout history. It is never to overstate that there are no words that can describe the beauty of West Lake. On top of that, it is also a place teeming with legends. According to one of the legends, in the Han Dynasty, there was a golden bull hiding at the bottom of the West Lake. When the lake dried up, the bull would show up, spitting water from its mouth to fill the dried-up lake. However, in order to please the emperor, the local officials ordered the people here to drain the lake to capture the bull. With the lake being dried, the golden bull appeared. The officials scrambled to go down to the lake to catch it. Then the bull began to roar and spit out vast amounts of water, drowning all the officials in an instant! Since then, West Lake has no longer dried up while the golden bull has disappeared forever. As such, West Lake has also been called “Golden Bull Lake”.
After lunch, Feilai Peak will be your destination. With an altitude of 168 meters, it is made of limestone, with old trees and vines on the mountains. Due to the long-term erosion of underground water, Feilai Peak has formed various oddly shaped caves, just like a zoo with rock animals such as dragons, elephants, tigers and apes. Besides, there are more than 300 Buddhist grotto statues. Maitreya Buddha the statue, in particular, is the most eye-catching. You will find that grotto statue with a smiling face and a bare chest.
On the Feilai Peak stands Lingyin Temple. Located in the northwest of West Lake, it is also known as Yunlin Zen Temple. It is one of the earliest Buddhist Monasteries and one of the top 10 ancient Temples in China. There are three major halls in the temple, among which Heavenly King Hall is the most famous. Being 24 meters long and 15 meters wide, the hall houses a huge priceless Buddha statue of more than 700 years old. On the gate hangs a big plaque with four Chinese characters written by Emperor Kangxi in the Qing Dynasty. It’s a place of blessings, and you can get a sense of seclusion and serenity.
Today’s last stop is Longjing Tea Plantation in the West Lake Scenic Area, renowned for the quality of its tea leaves. Just as West Lake meets our aesthetic needs, Longjing tea meets our life needs. After the Tang Dynasty (618-907), tea has represented an indispensable part and parcel of the life of the Chinese people. According to a legend, in the Qing Dynasty, the disease of Emperor Qianlong’s mother was healed by Longjing tea. Thus, the emperor designated the eighteen tea trees near West Lake as “Royal Tea Tree”, which ever since has made Longjing tea famed, becoming the top tea in China.
With breakfast, we will drive you to Railway Station where you take the estimated train G7580 08:34/09:34 to Shanghai.
Upon your arrival, your guide will take you to Yu Garden (Closed on Mondays). Covering an area of over 20,000 square meters, it is an ancient Chinese garden built in the Ming Dynasty. In the garden stands Yangshan Hall. There is a pair of iron lions standing at either side of its east gate, which were cast in the Yuan Dynasty. The two lions have different shapes and are beautifully crafted. The left strong lion is a male with its front right hoof stepping on a ball, symbolizing power and majesty. The right cute lion is a female with its front left hoof fondling a little lion, symbolizing the extension of the offspring. You can take photos with them!
This next stop is Shanghai Old Street, which is more than 800 meters in length. Having been renovated, the architectures along the street all follow a style of the Ming and Qing Dynasties as well as the Republic of China. This way, walking on the street, you seem to have returned to the bustling market in old Shanghai. Traditional shops containing tea houses, restaurants, shoe and clothes shops, and gold shops can be seen everywhere. You can go to savor the signature tea in an old-fashioned teahouse, parrying the sound and fury of the secular world. Or you taste some traditional snacks, such as wonton soup, ham zongzi (sticky rice wrapped in reed leaves), sweet rice porridge with lotus seeds, and deep-fried fermented dried tofu. The unique flavor of each snack can make your journey in Shanghai unforgettable.
After lunch, you will go to the Bund, where the buildings best reflect Shanghai’s internationalization. With 28 high buildings with 17 classical styles of European countries such as Germany, Russian, and Britain, the Bund is dubbed as “World Architectural Fair”. Take Custom House as an example, it is famed for its towering bell tower with ten floors, following the style of Big Ben in London, England. On the bell tower is a big clock, the components of which were made in the UK and then shipped to Shanghai for assembly. It allegedly cost more than 5,000 taels of silver.
Next, let’s visit Nanjing Road, known as the No.1 commercial street in China. It is also a place with a history of innovation and pioneering. For example, the four major department stores on Nanjing Road represent the earliest users of escalators, air conditioning systems, and receipts in Asia. Besides, there are myriad merchants gathering together on the Nanjing Road, such as Sincere Department Store, Century Square, and Shanghai Shimao Festival City, all of which serve as a window of Shanghai to the rest of the world, and a paradise for domestic and foreign shoppers.
This morning, let’s drive you southwest for about an hour to Zhujiajiao Water Town, about 50 kilometers away from Yu Garden. On the outskirt of Shanghai, the town boasts a history of over 5,000 years. Taking a wooden boat to go out for sightseeing in Zhujiajiao, what your eyes will meet is 36 stone bridges. Fangsheng (free the captive animals) bridge is a case in point. Built in the Ming Dynasty, its foundation made of wooden piles has remained strong enough to hold the whole bridge. Why? It is sticky rice and quicklime covered on the surface of the piles that play a crucial role, the combination of which can produce a waterproof effect. When you see the Fangsheng bridge, you can have a close-up view of the structure of its wooden piles.
With a good lunch in Zhujiajiao Water Town, we will drive you northeast for around 1.5 hours to visit Shanghai Tower, about 51 kilometers’ distance. It represents the tallest building in Asia, with a construction area of 578,000 square meters. On top of that, Shanghai Tower is equipped with the fastest elevator in the world. Only 55 seconds will be needed if you take the elevator to its 118th floor. On this floor is a sightseeing hall, where a panoramic view of Shanghai is available. For example, the tops of two skyscrapers, the World Financial Center and Jin Mao Tower will be in your sight. A “wishing tree” is placed in the hall. You can write your wishes on a card and then hang the card on the wishing tree, sending your best blessings to the world.
Today, your 12 days China Green Tea Tour will come to an end. After breakfast, your guide will take you to the airport. Hope to see you next time!
Author: Xie Peng
|City||Five Star hotel list||Four Star hotel list|
|Beijing||Sunworld Dynasty Hotel Beijing Wangfujing||Sunworld Hotel Wangfujing|
|Xiamen||Jingmin Hotel Central Xiamen||Xiamen Huaqiao Hotel|
|Nanping||Ramada Plaza by Wyndham Namping||Ramada Plaza by Wyndham Namping|
|Hangzhou||Landison Plaza Hotel||Best Western Plus Meiyuan Hotel Hangzhou|
|Shanghai||Ocean Hotel Shanghai||Courtyard by Marriott Shanghai Central|
About your child or infant, please contact us for a discounted price.
We started with a few days in Beijing & ended in Shanghai, from where we visited the Forbidden City and Great Wall. In between we visited Terra Cotta Warriors Museum, Panda Base, Shanghai Disneyland.
We had a wonderful holiday in China which will remain long in the memory. China is a breathtakingly beautiful country full of splendid temples and palaces, mountains and rivers, peaceful rural scenes and bustling shopping streets.