There is much to enjoy in this tour of immersion into ancient Chinese architecture, craft and culture, when you can try your hand at traditional skills. Whether picking tea, making an umbrella or kite, wondering at the skill of monks’ carvings, being enchanted by the picture post-card beauty of the lake, or ancient architecture, there are so many memorable experiences waiting for you.
|Vehicle||Air-conditioned vehicle with licensed driver|
|Guide Service & Language||Professional English-speaking guide|
Upon arrival in Hangzhou (before 13:00 is recommended) you will be picked up by your travel guide and transferred to the old block of Hangzhou to begin exploration of the city’s colorful folk culture. The tour begins at the Workmanship Demonstration Pavilion, a craft center where you can experience making such things as a kite or an oiled paper umbrella, while learning about folk art and culture of Hangzhou (at your own cost).
Outside the pavilion you will board a cruise to travel across the longest and oldest Grand Canal in the world to arrive at the Dadou Road Historical Block. Strolling the cobbled streets in this revitalized residential area discover fine examples of architecture from the Ming and Qing dynasties, peek into the past in the majestic Xiangji Temple, museums and displays of traditional crafts, or indulge yourself at the cafes, restaurants and gift shops.
You will be transferred to the pre-booked hotel to enjoy a free night at the end of the day.
Meals included: None
Tips: Make the most of your tour by enjoying some of the wonderful Hangzhou evening entertainment. Options include the Enduring Memories of Hangzhou show (West Lake Impression) or the spectacular night view at Qiantang River on weekends.
After breakfast, your guide will take you on a short drive to the most sacred Buddhist center in southern China, Lingyin Temple, the grand hall housing 500 bronze seated statues of Arhats. You will be amazed by the massive number and scale of Buddha statues carved in Feilai Peak and the exquisite carvings on the approach to the Temple. History and legends of the sites will be revealed by your guide along the way.
Next follows a relaxing cruise on West Lake aboard an ornate boat. Cruising the waters you can appreciate fully the beauty of this man-made lake, designed for poetic serenity in the tradition of Chinese gardens, which forms the scene printed on the one yuan banknote. Magical views of hills, willows, bridges and well-placed structures, invite photographic and artistic endeavor, especially at sunrise or sunset. Cycling around this symbol of Hangzhou is another way to capture its beauty (at your own cost).
Lunch is left to your own arrangement. Your guide may offer suggestions to try some genuine local cuisine.
In the afternoon on a visit to a tea plantation, the whole cultural cycle of tea production will be revealed as you get a close look at how tea grows and even pick some leaves if your visit coincides with the harvest season. You may also participate a tea making process and performance of a tea ceremony. Further understanding of Chinese tea history and culture can be gained at the China National Tea Museum that holds collections of tea varieties, tea sets and machines for making tea.
After the tour in Hangzhou, you will travel to beautiful Wuzhen Water Town and the peaceful, charming Xizha Scenic Area. Enjoy your stay at the pre-booked hotel.
Meals included: Breakfast
Tips: For those who don’t like boating, biking is an alternative way to explore the beauty of the West Lake. Your tour guide will suggest an itinerary from which you can choose (at your own cost).
After breakfast, you will be treated to a wonderful day in ancient Wuzhen Water Town. Follow the old bluestone paved streets to admire the conserved Ming and Qing dynasty architecture of the buildings. Stop in at classic workshops where you can watch traditional processes for making daily articles like sauce, cloth and silk. At the Wuzhen Xizha Theater listen to traditional story-telling in the ancient courtyard with its wooden tables and chairs, lush vegetation and antique decorations. A further option is a boat trip (at your own cost) on the canal to delight in the beautiful ancient town.
At the end of the tour, you will be transferred to the airport or train station for your next destination.
Meals included: Breakfast
Good to know: High speed trains from Tongxiang (closest train station to Wuhzen) can take you to major cities: Shanghai, Ningbo, Nanjing, Shenzhen, Wuyishan, etc. Please let us know if you also want us to book train tickets to other destinations.
Inclusions / Exclusions
- Admission fees: to sightseeing spots & activities specified.
- Activities specified in the itinerary.
- Excellent professional English-speaking guide.
- Ground transport in an air-conditioned vehicle with licensed driver as specified.
- Accommodation: 4-star or 5-star hotels with breakfast based on double/twin occupancy as specified.
- Boat rides on Grand Canal and West Lake.
- Travel Agency Liability Insurance during the tour.
- Government taxes & fees.
- International/domestic flights and trains to/from Hangzhou.
- China visa.
- Gratuities to guides and drivers and any expense of personal nature.
- Meals: Lunchs and dinners are excluded allowing you flexibility around meal choices. Your guide will make recommendations and order for you, if required.
- Cycling around the West Lake.
- Optional evening entertainment.
- Our tour package does not include travel insurance. Please purchase travel insurance before your trip to protect for any unforeseen circumstances.
- This is a private tour for your group of family or friends. No other travelers will join you. It’s always available for your schedule!
- Smart casual dress and comfortable walking shoes are recommended.
- Prices based on twin occupancy.
- The prices shown above are not valid during China’s Official Holidays (such as National Day and Chinese Spring Festival etc.).