Looking to start in China on the first step of my around the world trip with my girlfriend looking to spend 3 to 6 weeks in China. I have been looking around the internet and with other travelling companies to get some ideas of where to go and what to see and i think i have got a route that we may follow. Please let me know what you think, any tips, information, guides on how to travel betrween the places, where to stay, what to do etc.. in all theplaces would be so helpful and would be very happy with.
Beijing - Shanghai - Xi'an - Chengdu - Guilin - Longsheng - Yangshou - Hong Kong
Many thanks in advance any tips/information/help would be great.
i spent 5 weeks in china recently, following a similar southern route, if you can get yourself to Yunnan its a beautiful province, Kunming was a great chilled city and Lijiang was beautiful. I went to all of those places except Shanghai but you'll have no problem getting around with that itinerary. Trains are easy and relatively cheap but are slow, planes go pretty much everywhere and quickly but can be pretty expensive, sleeper buses also go everywhere but I cant say I was fond of them very much. most of those journeys are 12-18 hour by train.
Xi'an was one of my faves, theres plenty to do around there easily enough to fill a week or more. Lots of tombs and archealogical sites in the surrounding area if you like that kind of thing. The free fountain/light show at the Big Wild Goose Pagoda was great to see and the muslim quarter is a treat.
Dont miss out on Leshan when youre in Chengdu, the Grand Buddha is immense and the mountain park area its set in is full of stunning lush forest, bamboo thickets and temples. The Guilin area, just go and discover for yourself its gorgeous, if you do the Li River cruise, try and get yourself on a smaller boat rather than the big chugging tourist boats, as the bustle of people on the viewing deck destroyed all the tranquility of the experience for me. Also avoid the weekend if you can.
And please see as much of Yangshuo as you can, you wont regret spending time there!
PM me if you have any questions.
[ Edit: Edited on 16-May-2009, at 16:46 by Gartt ]
I'm traveling for 8 weeks now, for my 2009 China tour.
If you got three weeks...
1. Shanghai, I been there twice. The famous "The bund" is only photogenic. The selling point are the old colonial architecture and the modern building in the opposite banks. Paradoxically, the street is getting a make over, its a huge construction site, that would definitely make the street look better, but its certainly no longer about the old buildings.
Its just a bit over rated. The so called chic and trendy side is not that cheap anyway. Hangzhou and Chengdu can be as Chic and modern, plus more.
Xi'an, Chengdu- very good choices... But Guilin, Yangshou, Lonsheng- Definitely!!!
Did you mention Hangzhou! You should or must go there too.
Many thanks for the replies so far very helpful.
In Hangzhou what is there to do/see?
The aim of the trip in China is to see all the touristy parts that you need and have to go and see when your in a country, also see the modern but also the traditional side and natural beauty of the country.
If you want to be the Touristic route, its as easy as ABC, just look at the hostel wall and you'll have package tours like they are value meals at Mc.donalds.
Hangzhou has a park sourronding the West Lake, it has islands too, which you can see by cruising in the lake. It had lots of peach blossom. I don't know if they are still in bloom.
I'd recommend Hangzhou too. We hired bikes and cycled round the lake - it was really pretty. You can get a high-speed train there from Shanghai which only takes a couple of hours.
I did pretty much that exact same trip 2 years ago. Its easy to travel overland by train, i took a couple of overnight journeys between places. I also took a boat from Guilin to Yangshao, which was a great way to see it, local tour operators will be able to tell you about that, I then took a bus from Yangshao into Hong Kong. I did it in just under 6 weeks also and felt I had enough time in each place.
Feel free to message me if you have any specific questions.
Hi, thanks for taking time to leave a message on my thread on the forum. I would love to find out lots more information on China and the places to stop/see/visit etc... as i am bit confused to what i should do. I have between 3 and 6 weeks in China and wanting to see as much of the touristy things that i can as well as the proper China as well. Dont want it to be too rushed or expensive either.
Many thanks in advance
4-5 weeks is realistic for the trip you have suggested. Stunning though it is I'm personally not sure about trying to cram Yunnan in as well, we spent 3 weeks there and didn't see everything we wanted to, plus it's a big diversion to travel round Yunnan - I would only consider it if I thought I would never be able travel to China again. If you do decide to go for it make sure you allow yourself the full 6 weeks.
The more of your time you spend on the Chengdu-Guilin-Longsheng-Yangshuo bit the further your budget will stretch, Beijing and Hong Kong particularly will eat it up.
[ Edit: Edited on 21-May-2009, at 11:01 by magykal1 ]
I think you must make sure where is your start point first, the cities are not closed to each other, but you can link them by use Chinese railway system. My suggestion is Hong Kong--Guangzhou--Guilin- Kunming--Chengdu-Xian-Beijing-Shanghai,or reverse.
Guangzhou is stop over for transit,because there is no direct land transportation between Hong Kong and Guilin,except the flight.You can use the night train for Shanghai towards Beijing,and Xian.Kunming is the capital of Yunnan,a fantastic place,and is in the middle of Chengdu and Guilin.5-6 weeks is ok.