Highlights
  • Stay in a Tulou for a unique overnight experience – these huge earthen structures are like ancient apartment buildings, where generations of the same clan can live together
  • In Longi, hike the beautiful rice terraces that snake through the mountains of Longsheng like giant dragons, and visit hill tribe communities while surrounded by incredible views
  • Enjoy time to sit back and relax in the dramatic karst countryside of Yangshuo – immortalised in countless traditional Chinese paintings – and try the local favourite: beerfish
  • Starting and ending in two of the country's largest and most bustling cities – Shanghai and Hong Kong – you’ll also be able to experience the dazzling future of modern China

Enter a world of both natural wonder and big city glamour. Discover friendly people, a passionate food culture, historic sites and deep-seated traditions on this all-encompassing southern China expedition. Meet rural people and city folk, chow down on local delicacies and world-class fare and explore the wealth of history and modern developments of this mighty nation. NEW UPDATES FOR 2019: From 1st January 2019 this trip will become 9 days in length and will no longer visit Xiamen or Tulou Village. This is based on traveller feedback that they would like a shorter trip in South China without included flights but still covering the main destinations.

Destinations
Cities & Attractions
Activities
  • N/A
Rivers & Seas
  • Li River

2,863
Intrepid Travel Travel Reviews & Ratings
Has very high quality customer experiences and demonstrated commitment to responsible travel practices. read more
97% Recommend

4.6 out of 5
Excellent 2,593 Great 707 Average 136 Disappointing 53 Terrible 50
Value
4.6 Guide
4.6 Activities
4.6 Lodging
4.6 Transportation
4.6 Meals
4.6
South China Getaway

No reviews yet for this trip. Browse other reviews below for Intrepid Travel.

A

Recommends

Overall, the trip was excellent. This was October 2015

5.0
  • Value 5.0
  • Guide 5.0
  • Activities 5.0
  • Lodging 5.0
  • Transportation 5.0
  • Meals 5.0
Overall, the trip was excellent. This was my first time with Intrepid but I have taken several similar trips (Tucan). The tour leader (Kris) was excellent and the activities were a good balance._x000D_
_x000D_
One aspect - I've noticed a sharp shift in the demographic of group towards older travellers. I suspect this is but one side effect of wider economic conditions. While the individuals in our group were fine, I do worry that in future this could lead to a watering down of the experience. It is very important, that the "Original" trips are an adventure travel product. While of course, economic circumstances may lead to fewer of these trips and more trips specifically targeting older/less active/less change-averse groups, these should be differently labelled rather than diluting the "original" experience._x000D_
_x000D_
Another minor oddity is that I received an itinerary adjustment 2 weeks before departure which turned out to be incorrect. Kris hadn't heard about the adjustment so was a bit puzzled people asked her about it (see comment about risk-averse old people above). No big deal but might have been nice to get another mail from HQ.
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Operator Intrepid Travel

A

Recommends

Our tour Guide Jane was the best October 2015

5.0
  • Value 5.0
  • Guide 5.0
  • Activities 5.0
  • Lodging 5.0
  • Transportation 5.0
  • Meals 5.0
Our tour Guide Jane was the best .. she gave us a really good experience she was fun and made my overall experience fantastic , I have a gluten intolerance and she helped me pick food that I could eat and couldn't have done it without her! was great traveling with her
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Operator Intrepid Travel

T

Recommends

The tour was very comprehensive, I loved October 2015

5.0
  • Value 5.0
  • Guide 5.0
  • Activities 5.0
  • Lodging 5.0
  • Transportation 5.0
  • Meals 5.0
The tour was very comprehensive, I loved that it had so many included activities and food.

Operator Intrepid Travel

K

Recommends

Good mixture of program and free time October 2015

5.0
  • Value 5.0
  • Guide 5.0
  • Activities 5.0
  • Lodging 5.0
  • Transportation 5.0
  • Meals 5.0
Good mixture of program and free time, local guide is a very good idea as you get much more information about the living in that country, group of max 12 is good size

Operator Intrepid Travel

M

Recommends

Great tour- all must see sites, helpful October 2015

5.0
  • Value 5.0
  • Guide 5.0
  • Activities 5.0
  • Lodging 5.0
  • Transportation 5.0
  • Meals 5.0
Great tour- all must see sites, helpful fun guide, great hotel locations and the included meals makes finding and trying food and meal times easy.

Operator Intrepid Travel

Itinerary

Day 1 Shanghai

Nimen Hao! Welcome to China. Blending 21st-century architecture with old-world character, Shanghai pulses with the beat of new China. Your adventure begins with a Welcome Meeting at 6 pm this evening. Please look for a note in the hotel lobby or ask reception where it will take place. Settle into your hotel and then get a feel for this vibrant city – Shanghai’s bright lights, fevered trade and frenetic pace provide a glimpse into the dazzling global future of the country. Your evening is free for your first exploration of the city – perhaps get a taste of Shanghai’s eclectic food scene, which draws influence from far beyond China’s walls.

Day 2 Shanghai - Overnight Train

Today you have free time to explore this bustling city until this afternoon, when you’ll board your first overnight train from Shanghai to Guilin (approximately 18-20 hours). You could visit the Propaganda Museum for a fascinating look at China's revolutionary past, get a bird's eye view of the city from the Pearl Tower's observation decks, get a taste of 1920s Shanghai along the Bud, wander the Yuyuan Gardens and Bazaar, barter in markets, stroll through modern Pudong or the explore ancient nongtangs. Train travel in China may not be entirely luxurious but it's certainly one of the best ways to come face to face with the country and its people, as it's the main form of transport for locals.

Day 3 Longji Rice Terraces

Disembark from the train and jump on a bus from Guilin to Longji. The Longji region has some of the most extensive rice terraces around. These terraces change with the seasons: filled with water from the mountains before planting, becoming green during the growing season and then golden when the rice is ready for harvest. This evening you’ll overnight in the village of Dazhai, which is home to the Yao minorities. The Yao still preserve some of their traditional lifestyle and unique customs. You'll notice women only cut their hair at 16 years old, symbolising their entrance into adulthood. The hair isn’t thrown away, but is kept by the grandmother. When the woman marries, the hair is made into an ornamental headdress and brought to the husband's home as a souvenir!

Day 4 Longji Rice Terraces

Today you’ll hike through the Longji Valley and its rice terraces, constructed over 500 years ago (called the Dragon’s Backbone because the rice terraces resemble a dragon's scales, while the mountain summit looks like the backbone of the dragon). Walk through stunning scenery, with its unique terraces for growing rice, alongside bamboo trees and chestnut forests. Despite some challenging hills, much of the hike is spent walking around over the stones, passing waterfalls and fields. After a day spent admiring the endless vistas, you’ll overnight in the picturesque village of Ping'an.

Day 5 Yangshuo

Take public transport on to Yangshuo (approximately 4 hours). Soak up the charm of this little town, popular with the Chinese and Western travellers alike, who come for the beautiful landscape and stay for the great cafes and bars. It's also one of the best places in the country to get a feel for local culture and traditions while having plenty of fun at the same time. The countryside around Yangshuo is immortalized in many traditional Chinese paintings – picture immense limestone karsts dotting the rural landscape, towering spectacularly over rice paddies and the meandering Li River. The scene is even celebrated on every 20 Yuan note.

Day 6 Yangshuo

Today is a free day for you to do as you like. You could begin by focusing your body and mind with a morning Tai Chi class or Kung Fu lesson, and then continue the active theme by hiring a bike, gaining insight into rural Chinese life on a cycle through picture-perfect locations. You could climb up to Moon Hill – a limestone pinnacle with a moon-shaped hole penetrating the hill – or simply stroll along the river and be immersed in the natural beauty of the valley. For something a little less energetic, you could simply sit back and relax as you enjoy a relaxing cruise down the Li or Yulong River. Later, perhaps watch an outdoor light show staged by 2008 Beijing Olympics’ Opening Ceremony director Zhang Yimou.

Day 7 Yangshuo

Today’s another free day to pursue you interests here in Yangshuo. Freedom and flexibility is the idea today, and your friendly local leader will be on hand to give you suggestions and tips. If you’re still feeling active then up in the limestone hills are a number of caves that can be explored; or if you’d rather see the landscape from a different perspective, then kit up in a rock-climbing harness and tackle one of the 300 rock-climbing routes. For a more laid-back day, maybe visit the market to shop with the locals and get a feel for the regional produce. You can then put this new knowledge to use in a cooking class at the Yangshuo Cooking School. Learn to cook dishes with recipes that are easy to make and ingredients readily available outside of China, so that you’ll soon be wowing friends and family back at home.

Day 8 Guilin - Xiamen - Tulou Village

This morning travel by private bus to Guilin Airport (approx 90 mins) for your flight to Xiamen (approx 90 mins). On landing you’ll transfer by private bus from Xiamen Airport to the Tulou village (approximately 3 hours). This area is home to the Hakka people, who traditionally live in round, walled villages or communal houses (“tulou”) with many families and generations of the same clan living together. Accommodation is very basic in the local style. It can get quite cold at night in some months so please ensure you bring warm clothes. Washing facilities may be limited, with communal toilets outside of the rooms. Tonight you have the option to try some simple local dishes for dinner, and breakfast tomorrow may be quite different from what you are used to, but is certainly authentic. The area has been developed for domestic tourism recently and sees lots of day-trippers, but few people stay overnight, so you’re sure to have a great local experience while here.

Day 9 Tulou Village - Xiamen

Today you’ll take a walk with a local guide around the surrounding villages and between some of the clusters of Tulou houses. Learn some more about these impressive structures, which are like 500-yar-old apartment blocks, huge earthen structures that resemble coliseums with timbered galleries as high as five stories. The buildings were constructed to protect the inhabitants from animals, warlords and bandits, with five-feet thick walls repelling human and natural threats. Later, head out on a hike to a viewpoint and nearby waterfall. The length and distance of the hike will depend on the weather, local conditions and fitness of the group, however most groups will generally spend a few hours exploring. Transfer to by private bus to return to Xiamen for the evening (approximately 3 hours).

Day 10 Xiamen

Today is a free day for you to explore Xiamen. One of the highlights of this coastal city is the island of Gulang Yu, just across the harbour. It’s highly recommended that you jump on a ferry and head over to this island crammed full of historic mansions and villas, which is easily navigable by bike or on foot. The streets are filled with food vendors, handicraft stalls, and lovely cafes and restaurants to sit and relax. The island was declared an international settlement after the First Opium War in the late 19th century, and Europeans, Japanese and wealthy Chinese constructed lavish buildings during Xiamen’s time as an important port. Time in the city can be spent in the landscaped grounds of Xiamen University campus, surrounded by trendy bars and cafes where you might have a chat with some local students. Perhaps climb up the steps to Nanputuo Temple, one of the most important and active Buddhist sites in the region, which has beautiful views across the city and surrounds. Xiamen has many local specialty dishes, so tonight why not try something like Shacha Mian (noodles with peanut soup) for dinner.

Day 11 Hong Kong

Today you’ll travel by high-speed train to the Chinese border at Shenzhen (approximately 4 hours). The China-Hong Kong border is busy, so there can often be a bit of a wait to get through and a lot of patience is required. On average, it takes around 2 hours to clear immigration and customs on both sides. Your bags will be with you during this time. Then you’ll walk the short distance from the train station to the border, go through procedures to exit China, and then enter Hong Kong. Once all that's done, you’ll travel on the KCR train to central Hong Kong. Hong Kong made itself known to the world as a British colony and, since the 1997 handover, the city has become a unique and fascinating place to see where the East really does meet the West. Hong Kong's cityscape is spectacular and its modern fast-paced life is only minutes from picturesque islands and beaches. Perhaps spend the last few hours of this trip searching out the best yum cha for a final sumptuous meal with your group.

Day 12 Hong Kong

There are no activities planned for today and you are able to depart the accommodation at any time.

Dates & Pricing

Price From

$ 1,030

Price Per Day:

$ 86 per day
 
Start DateFinish DateBase PriceDeparture GuaranteedAvailability 
Nov-18-2018Nov-29-2018$ 1,346NoSold Out Reserve
Mar-24-2019Apr-01-2019$ 1,030Yes11 spots left Reserve
Apr-21-2019Apr-29-2019$ 1,070Yes16 spots left Reserve
May-19-2019May-27-2019$ 1,070Yes13 spots left Reserve
Jun-23-2019Jul-01-2019$ 1,030Yes16 spots left Reserve
Jul-14-2019Jul-22-2019$ 1,030Yes12 spots left Reserve
Aug-11-2019Aug-19-2019$ 1,030Yes16 spots left Reserve
Sep-15-2019Sep-23-2019$ 1,070Yes16 spots left Reserve
Oct-20-2019Oct-28-2019$ 1,070Yes16 spots left Reserve
Oct-27-2019Nov-04-2019$ 1,030Yes16 spots left Reserve
Nov-17-2019Nov-25-2019$ 1,030Yes16 spots left Reserve
Jan-12-2020Jan-20-2020$ 1,030No16 spots left Reserve
Mar-22-2020Mar-30-2020$ 1,030No16 spots left Reserve
Apr-19-2020Apr-27-2020$ 1,070No16 spots left Reserve
May-17-2020May-25-2020$ 1,070No16 spots left Reserve
Jun-21-2020Jun-29-2020$ 1,030No16 spots left Reserve
Jul-12-2020Jul-20-2020$ 1,030No16 spots left Reserve
Aug-09-2020Aug-17-2020$ 1,030No16 spots left Reserve
Sep-13-2020Sep-21-2020$ 1,070No16 spots left Reserve
Oct-18-2020Oct-26-2020$ 1,070No16 spots left Reserve
Oct-25-2020Nov-02-2020$ 1,030No16 spots left Reserve
Nov-15-2020Nov-23-2020$ 1,030No16 spots left Reserve
Check Current Availability, prices, specials with Intrepid Travel
Details
Group Size:
Small Group - 24 max
Maximum Number of People in Group: 16
Accomodations
Hotel (7 nights),Guesthouse (3 nights),Overnight Sleeper Train (1 night)
Start City
Shanghai
End City
Hong Kong
Guides All Intrepid group trips are accompanied by one of our group leaders. The aim of the group leader is to take the hassle out of your travels and to help you have the best trip possible. Intrepid endeavours to provide the services of an experienced leader however, due to the seasonality of travel, rare situations may arise where your leader is new to a particular region or training other group leaders. Your leader will provide information on the places you are travelling through, offer suggestions for things to do and see, recommend great local eating venues and introduce you to our local friends. While not being guides in the traditional sense you can expect them to have a broad general knowledge of the places visited on the trip, including historical, cultural, religious and social aspects. At Intrepid we aim to support local guides who have specialised knowledge of the regions we visit. If you were interested in delving deeper into the local culture at a specific site or location then your leader can recommend a local guide service in most of the main destinations of your trip.
Additional Information:

Finish point

  • West Hotel 偉晴軒
  • No.39 Wai Ching Street,Kowloon 地址 : 香港九龍佐敦偉晴街39至47
  • Kowloon
  • Hong Kong
  • CHINA
  • Phone: +852 27707718
  • Fax: 85227707718

Trip ID#: intrepid-CBRS

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