18 Days Classic China Tour with Southwest China Paradise Experience

Beijing, Xian and Shanghai are the top destinations of China city tour. This 18 Days Tour will take you to explore the popular cities of Beijing, Xian, Shanghai and Guilin. What’s more, we will also head to Yunnan to appreciate its stunning natural scenery and learn its minority cultures.


  • Experience the old and modern culture of Beijing, Xian and Shanghai.
  • Enjoy the best highlights of Guilin, Longsheng and Yangshuo.
  • Explore the hot destinations of Kunming, Dali, Lijiang and Shangri-La in YUnnan.

Brief Itinerary

  • Day 1: Beijing Arrival
  • Day 2: Beijing
  • Day 3: Beijing
  • Day 4: Beijing – Xian
  • Day 5: Xian
  • Day 6: Xian – Guilin
  • Day 7: Guilin – Longsheng – Guilin
  • Day 8: Guilin – Yangsuo – Guilin
  • Day 9: Guilin – Kunming
  • Day 10: Kunming
  • Day 11: Kunming – Dali
  • Day 12: Dali – Lijiang
  • Day 13: Lijiang
  • Day 14: Lijiang – Shangri-La
  • Day 15: Shangri-La
  • Day 16: Shangri-La – Shanghai
  • Day 17: Shanghai
  • Day 18: Shanghai Departure

Google Map

Detailed Itinerary

Day 1 Beijing Arrival

Sightseeing and Activities:
Accommodation: Beijing

Upon your arrival, our guide will pick you up from airport and transfer you to your hotel in a comfortable and clean car. Then have a good rest.

Day 2 Beijing

Sightseeing and Activities: Tiananmen Square, Forbidden City, Summer Palace
Accommodation: Beijing
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch

Tiananmen Square in Beijing

We will start the tour form the center of the city – Tiananmen Square. Go north through the square and you will reach the Forbidden City. As the largest and best-preserved ancient wooden structure in the world, it has more than 8,000 pavilions and thousands of historic treasures. Then enjoy the lunch.

In the afternoon, head to visit Summer Palace , which used to be the summer resort for royal families and emperors.

Day 3 Beijing

Sightseeing and Activities: Mutianyu Great Wall, Sacred Way, Bird’s Nest and Water Cube
Accommodation: Beijing
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch

Mutianyu Great Wall in Beijing

Transfer to Mutianyu Great Wall. Great Wall is one of the greatest architecture projects in human history.

Later, we will transfer to the Sacred Way, the first attraction of Ming Tombs. And then go to Changling, one of the 13 Ming Tombs, which is the Mausoleum of Emperor Zhu Di, the third Emperor of Ming Dynasty. It is the largest, original and the best preserved among the 13 Ming Tombs.

At last, drive back to downtown Beijing and drop at the Olympic Park to take some picture from outside of the Bird’s Nest and Water Cube.

Day 4 Beijing – Xian

Sightseeing and Activities: Temple of Heaven, Hutongs
Accommodation: Xian
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch

In the morning, visit the Temple of Heaven, which is the spot where the Emperor pray for a good harvest. Three blue-tiled cone-shaped roofs of it, already become a worldwide symbol of Beijing.

Then experience old Beijing cultures in Beijing Hutongs. After that, take the high speed train to Xian. And the local guide will wait you at the train station. Then transfer you to the hotel and help you check-in.

Day 5 Xian

Sightseeing and Activities: Terracotta Warriors and Horses, Ancient City Wall, Muslim Quarter
Accommodation: Xian
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch

Terracotta Army, Terra Cotta Warriors and Horses Museum, Xian

Today, we will start from the World’s Eighth Wonder, the Terracotta Warriors and Horses Museum.

Then take a stroll along the Ancient City Wall, you can ride a bicycle on the city wall. The Ming City wall is one of the best preserved protection project in ancient time.

And we will taste the local food in Muslim Street and enjoy the local people’s life.

Day 6 Xian – Guilin

Sightseeing and Activities: Big Wild Goose Pagoda, Shaanxi History Museum
Accommodation: Xian
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch

In the morning, visit the Big Wild Goose Pagoda. As the symbol of the old-line Xian, Big Wild Goose Pagoda is a well-preserved ancient building and a holy place for Buddhists.

Then visit one of the best museums in China, the Shaanxi Historical Museum. It is a large modern museum at the national level.

After the tour, escorted to catch a flight to Guilin(about 2hrs). And the local guide will wait you at the airport. Then transfer you to the hotel and help you check-in.

Day 7 Guilin – Longsheng – Guilin

Sightseeing and Activities: Longsheng Rice Terraces, ethnic villages
Accommodation: Guilin
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch

In the morning, drive to Longsheng County. It features rich and elegant folk customs. The we will arrive at Dragon’s Backbone – Rice Terraces. It was reputed as “an absolute one under the heaven and the first one in the world”. After lunch, we will visit the villages of Yao people and Zhuang people to experience the ethnic cultures and lifestyle.

After the tour, drive back to Guilin.

Day 8 Guilin – Yangsuo – Guilin

Sightseeing and Activities: Li River cruise, Yangsuo old town, West Street
Accommodation: Guilin
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch

West Street in Yangshuo County, Guilin

After breakfast, take Li River cruise to Yangsuo for about 4 hours. On the twisty Li River from Zhujiang to Yangshuo, it covers hundreds and thousands of grotesque peaks. Breathe the fresh air, feel the gentle breeze and enjoy the spectacular landscapes here. Have lunch on board.

In the afternoon, disembark at the old town Yangshuo and check in hotel. Then explore the ancient town – Yangsuo. It has a history of over 1400 years. Walk around West Street to find a lot of unique shops selling traditional handcrafts, hand-made scarfs, snacks of local flavor etc.

There is an optional activity in the evening – Impression Liu Sanjie directed by famous director – Zhang Yimou.

Day 9 Guilin – Kunming

Sightseeing and Activities: Elephant Trunk Hill, Reed Flute Cave
Accommodation: Kunming
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch

In the morning, drive back to Guilin and visit Elephant Trunk Hill, then move on to Reed Flute Cave, which is the “Palace of Natural Arts” with beautiful stalactite and stalagmite formations illuminated by colorful lights.

After that, drive to airport to board the flight to Kunming. A local tour guide will pick you up at airport and transfer to the hotel.

Day 10 Kunming

Sightseeing and Activities: Stone Forest
Accommodation: Kunming
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch

Breakfast at hotel, our tour guide and drive will pick you up from your hotel and then drive about 85km to the Stone Forest, a notable set of limestone formations and two parts of which have been UNESCO World Heritage Sites as part of the South China Karst. Besides, Stone Forest is also famous for the ethnic culture of the Sani People (a branch of the Yi ethnicminority).

After the visit, drive back to Kunming.

Day 11 Kunming – Dali

Sightseeing and Activities: Erhai Lake cruise, Three Pagodas, Xizhou Ancient Town, Dali Old Town
Accommodation: Dali
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch

Erhai Lake Dali

Fly to Dali in the morning and then head to take the cruise on Erhai Lake. Erhai Lake, the largest highland lake next to Dianchi, means “sea shaped like an ear” in Chinese.

In the afternoon, continue the tour to Three Pagodas of the Chongsheng Temple – a symbol of the Dali City and transferred to visit Xizhou ancient town to appreciate Bai’s Houses (Yan’s Courtyard included).

After that, drive back to Dali Old Town. Wander around the streets to experience the locla culture and have some local snacks. Located between Cangshan Mountain and Erhai Lake, Dali Old Town is a historic town with rich culture, which attracts many visitors every year.

Day 12 Dali – Lijiang

Sightseeing and Activities: Lijiang Ancient Town
Accommodation: Lijiang
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch

Today we will drive to Lijiang. Upon Lijiang arrival, head to visit Lijiang Old Town. With a history of more than 800 years, Lijiang Old Town was listed as the World Cultural Heritage Site by the UNESCO in 1997.

Day 13 Lijiang

Sightseeing and Activities: Yulong Snow Mountain, Baisha Village and Murals, Impression Lijang Ethnic Show
Accommodation: Lijiang
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch

Jade Dragon Snow Mountain in Lijiang

In the morning, our guide & driver will pick you up and head to visit Jade Dragon Snow Mountain. About 15 kilometers from Lijiang Old Town, Jade Dragon Snow Mountain is the southernmost snowcapped mountain in the Northern Hemisphere.

After lunch, enjoy the Impression Lijang Ethnic Show demonstrating the traditions and lifestyles of the Naxi, Yi and Bai peoples of the area directed in Ganhaizi Meadow(3100M). Later stroll through an enchanting traditional Yunnan village – Baisha Village and visit Baisha Mural – one part of Lijiang World Cultural Heritage.

Day 14 Lijiang – Shangri-La

Sightseeing and Activities: the First Bend of Yangtze River, Tiger Leaping Gorge, Dukezong Ancient Town, Guishan Hill, Grand Prayer Wheel
Accommodation: Shangri-La
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch

Yixiantian Ray of Sunshine in the Middle Section of Tiger Leaping Gorge

Breakfast at hotel and drive to Shangri-La city. Shangri-La is a great place to experience the spectacular landscape and profound Tibetan culture.

On the way, we will have a distant view of the First Bend of Yangtze River, and continue the trip to Tiger Leaping Gorge, which is one of the deepest gorges in the world. Then drive about 2 hours to Shangri-La. Upon arrival, check in hotel.

Later, stroll around Dukezong Ancient Town, a famous stop on the antient Tea-horse Trade Caravand. Then walk up to the top of Guishan Hill and see the largest Prayer Wheel of the world – Grand Prayer Wheel, where we can also have a panoramic view of Shangri-La city and Dukezong Ancient Town.

Day 15 Shangri-La

Sightseeing and Activities: Songzanlin Monastery, Pudacuo National Park, local family visit
Accommodation: Shangri-La
Meals: Breakfast

Ganden Songzanlin Monastery in Shangrila

Morning, visit the largest Tibetan monastery in Yunnan – Songzanlin Monastery. Afterwards visit Bita Lake & Shudu Lake in Pudacuo National Park, which is located in one of the most biologically-diverse regions of the world.

Finally, visit a Tibetan’s family to experience their local life. Try some Tibetan home-made yak and cheese.

Day 16 Shangri-la – Shanghai

Sightseeing and Activities:
Accommodation: Shanghai
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch

Explore this city at leisure until being transferred to the airport for the flight to Shanghai. Upon arrival, met by the tour guide and escorted to the hotel.

Day 17 Shanghai

Sightseeing and Activities: Yuyuan Garden, the Bund, Jade Buddha Temple, Shanghai Oriental Pearl TV Tower, Acrobatics Show
Accommodation: Shanghai
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch

After breakfast, we will first visit Yuyuan Garden. Yu Yuan Garden(or Yun Garden) is a famous classical garden located in Anren Jie, Shanghai. Then move on to the bund, which is located along the Huangpu River. It is a famous waterfront and regarded as the symbol of Shanghai.

After that, continue the tour to the Jade Buddha Temple, which is a venerable and famous Buddhist temple built in 1928. Afterwards we will stop at Oriental Pearl TV Tower. The ultra-modern Oriental Pearl TV Tower combines ancient concepts with 21st Century technology, where you can get a bird-eye-view of whole Shanghai city.

In the evening, enjoy an optional Acrobatic Show.

Day 18 Shanghai Departure

Sightseeing and Activities:
Meals: Breakfast

Today your wonderful tour will end. Be escorted to the airport for your flight and service ends.

Service Included:

  • Admission fees for all of the sightseeing spots listed in the itinerary;
  • Meals as listed in the itinerary;
  • Hotels as listed in the itinerary;
  • Private English-speaking tour guide;
  • Private vehicle for transfers & sightseeing with skilled driver;
  • Service charge & government taxes;
  • Luggage transfers between airports and hotels;
  • Domestic train tickets of soft sleeper.

Service Excluded:

  • Any arrival and departure international airfares or train tickets;
  • Chinese visa fees;
  • Excess baggage charged by Airlines;
  • Single room supplement;
  • Tips to guides and drivers;
  • Personal expenses and gratuities to service staff;
  • Personal travel accident insurance;
  • All optional programs.