First name is required!
Last name is required!
First name is not valid!
Last name is not valid!
This is not an email address!
Email address is required!
This email is already registered!
Password is required!
Enter a valid password!
Please enter 6 or more characters!
Please enter 16 or less characters!
Passwords are not the same!
Terms and Conditions are required!
Email or Password is wrong!
Please select the captcha checkbox!
Please select the valid captcha!

Top Trip Memories

  • Sailing through the fabled Three Gorges that have made Yangtze river cruises famous.
  • Stopping at the Three Gorges hydro-electric dam, the world's largest construction project, which provides 15% of China's electric power.
  • Marveling at the canals in Suzhou, China's "Venice," a stop on many Yangtze river cruise itineraries.
  • Visiting Shanghai at the end or beginning of the cruise, a remarkable blend of an ultra-modern and colonial urban setting.
  • Touring Beijing, China's capital, and its historic Forbidden City.
  • Making a side trip to view the Great Wall of China near Beijing.
View More

Tour Tips

  • More than 60 vessels currently ply the Yangtze, so you'll have a choice of a number of different lines, of varying degrees of comfort and price. 
  • Westerners may want to choose one of the cruise lines that cater to Western preferences in food (including Chinese food done to Western tastes) and use English as their primary language, such as Uniworld, Viking, Avalon, or Victoria Cruises. 
  • Allow plenty of time to get your China visa before your trip. 
  • Despite improvements in visitors being able to arrange their own transportation, a tour of China is still the safest way to go if you don't speak the language, and taking tours largely free you from bureaucratic hassles.
  • Yangtze cruises are often included in longer tours of China, which may also visit Shanghai, Beijing, the Great Wall, Guilin, and Xian. 
  • Mid-summer gets very hot and humid on the Yangtze, so it's best to avoid July. Late August to October and May into June are generally the most pleasant months for a cruise.  
View More

Yangtze River Travel Reviews & Ratings

4.8 out of 5

100%

recommend

127 Reviews

  • Excellent 77
  • Great 28
  • Average 0
  • Disappointing 0
  • Terrible 0

Rating Details

  • Value
    4.8
  • Guide
    4.8
  • Activities
    4.8
  • Lodging
    4.8
  • Transportation
    4.8
  • Meals
    4.8

Tour Reviews

5.0
November 2016
SmarTours
Recommend: Yes
On October 13, 2016, we left for our trip to China & the Yangtze River Cruise. 27 people who couldn't wait to meet each other and most of all our tour guide, Mark Ma. To say that he's the best would be an understatement. Our trip was fabulous from the moment we met him til we boarded the plane, homeward bound. His knowledge of China is vast and his English is perfect. This is my 3rd trip with Smart Tours and I love traveling with them. The price is unbeatable for what we always get. From hotels, to transportation, tours and food Smart Tours can't be beat. The trip is physically demanding but the upside is I lost 6 pounds from so much walking. I can't wait for my next trip. Thanks!!
Read more

China for me was incredible, despite the frustrations of no social media and English speaking TV channels especially the news and 21 days was just enough

Essential China

5.0
November 2016
G Adventures
Recommend: Yes
China for me was incredible, despite the frustrations of no social media and English speaking TV channels - especially the news - and 21 days was just enough.

Essential China has a good variety of activities mixed with some free time to explore

Essential China

5.0
November 2016
G Adventures
Recommend: Yes
Essential China has a good variety of activities mixed with some free time to explore. The highlights for me were the monastery stay and Yangshou. The CEO was great and had a wealth of knowledge they were willing to share. They encouraged exploring in the free time and even gave suggestions of where we could go and what we could do. I really enjoyed this trip. Thanks again to my great CEO.
Read more
5.0
November 2016
SmarTours
Recommend: Yes
We hit the road running, flight from LA to Shanghai...our guide Mark was waiting for us and we set off for the hotel. Mark Ma spent the entire time with us. For most of us that have travelled a lot, we all felt he was one of the best ever. He was patient, intelligent, knowledeable, and informative. There were 26 in our group of varying ages and abilities. At the end of the day, we saw so much and were ready for bed at night. There is so much to see, but the crowds of people for us proved very tiring. China proved to be a remarkable country, we were all blown away how they have advanced mainly since Tienamen and then of course where they are going from here. The cities were all new and amazing, and very, very clean. We were hard pressed to find any litter anywhere. All of the major attractions were amazing....The Terra Cotta Warriors were almost beyond belief...no one should miss seeing this piece of history. At every place we went, Mark and smarTours had arranged for a tour guide for us for that area....they were able to give us great insight to that days activities from a local perspective.For your information, we saw tours from much more expensive tour companies all along the way...they were seeing most of the same sights, staying at many of the same hotels...be sure to realize the value of this trip
Read more

A life changing experience

Essential China

5.0
October 2016
G Adventures
Recommend: Yes
A life changing experience! I met a wonderful bunch of fellow travellers, saw amazing sights and now have an idea of what 1.4 billion people really means!

Top Tour Operators and Travel Companies


Yangtze River Trips & Tour Advice

The Yangtze River flows for nearly 4,000 miles through the heart of China, essentially dividing the country between north and south and offering a relaxing way to escape China’s traffic-choked streets and urban air pollution. The full-length river cruises cover about 1,400 miles of the 4,000. 

You don't have to miss out on China’s two major cities: many cruise itineraries start either in Beijing, China’s capital, or Shanghai, its most vibrant city. Yangtze River cruise itineraries often include multi-day visits to both on either end of the river voyage.

If you start in Shanghai, you can explore both old colonial-era Shanghai, along the waterfront Bund District, as well as the ultra-modern new city (using your ship as hotel and restaurant). If you start in Beijing, sightseeing includes the 15th-century-era imperial Forbidden City, huge Tiananmen Square -- regarded as the center of the Middle Kingdom -- and a trip to see part of the Great Wall, which lies outside the city.

Once on the cruise itself, the itinerary may include a stop in the ancient Chinese capital of Nanjing and another at Suzhou, known as the “Venice of the East” for its network of canals.

Three Gorges

Yangtze cruises of whatever length all stop at the Three Gorges Dam, the world's largest hydro-electric dam project. While extremely controversial during its construction because it displaced more than a million people -- as well as flooding archaeological sites and altering the landscape of the scenic Three Gorges -- it's still an engineering marvel.

The ships all sail in daylight through the Three Gorges, which, though flooded by the dam and are now a reservoir, remain a scenic wonder. The Three Gorges are Xiling -- the longest -- Wu (which includes the gorgeous 12 Peaks), and Qutang, where you'll pass by sheer cliffs. 

The river ships typically stop at villages along the route to visit pagodas, sacred mountains and other sites.

Cruise Lengths

Some itineraries cover just the distance between Chongging and Yichang, which includes the Three Gorges. These take four or five days, depending on whether you're traveling downstream or upstream (Chongqing to Yichang is downstream and the faster trip).

Some longer Yangtze itineraries (approximately 11 to 16 days), will split more land time with time afloat.

Rover How can we help?

We respect your privacy and take great care to protect your information. By submitting this form you agree to our Privacy Policy and Terms of Use.

×

Experts

Gavin D.
 
 

Tours & Operators on Stride Awarded and Featured by: