Take the travel warrior’s journey through China on this five day tour during which you’ll visit Xian and Luoyang. There’s no doubt China’s history is characterized by the rise and fall of many dynasties and that warriors take pride of place in the country’s rich history. Visit Xian and gain an insight to the vision held by Emperor Qin for protection in the afterlife when you look out over the tombs of the Terracotta Army. Even the finest details are not lost amongst the nearly 7,000 figures, horses, and chariots. Enjoy other Xian highlights, including the City Wall, The Great Mosque, and Muslim Street before traveling to Luoyang to visit the remarkable Longmen Grottoes and then Denfeng, the home of the ancient tradition of Shaolin Kung Fu. Still practised by modern students following the same principles from thousands of years ago, the Shaolin Temple and surrounds make the perfect backdrop to an authentic Kung Fu performance you’ll always remember. Including four nights accommodation in centrally located four or five star hotels, daily breakfasts, airport/train transfers, bullet train and road travel, and the opportunity to blend with other tailored China travel, this tour is essential travel for the adventurer curious to dive deep into unique destinations.
Arrive at Xian airport and be welcomed by your local tour guide outside the baggage claim area. The drive from the airport to hotel is the opportunity to learn a little about this vibrant city. Take in the red lantern lined streets, pass the City Wall and get insider tips about the best local restaurant for dinner. Your guide and driver will drive directly to your four or five star inner city hotel. Take the remainder of the day to rest, relax, or explore.
Meals included: None
Few sights in China can match the magnitude and awe of the the world-renowned Terracotta Army. This first day of touring is the opportunity to take it all in. Considered by historians worldwide to be the largest underground military base in the world, the Terracotta Army defies belief with the thousands of unique life-sized figures, including soldiers, horses, carts and weapons. On return to Xian, enjoy a change of pace as you explore the ancient City Wall, currently the largest and best-preserved wall of its type in China. Enclosing China’s former capital city and almost 14 kilometres long, do a full circuit on a bike (tandems available!) or simply explore on foot, taking time to peak out through the wall as guards did in the past and gain a birdseye view of the city. Spend the afternoon in contemplation at Xian’s Great Mosque. Beautiful gardens and a stunning complex of buildings built mid seventh century, the Great Mosque is the oldest and largest Islamic mosque in China. After just a short time here, you’ll feel you’ve stepped back in time. Follow your nose to Muslim Street, which is bustling with authentic eateries and souvenirs. Time to stock up on travel mementos. Ask your guide for their favouriate foodie recommendations before the final destination of the day, the famous Bell Tower and Drum Tower Square. You will be returned to your hotel to relax and reflect on the day’s activities.
Meals included: Breakfast
After breakfast and check out from your hotel, it’s time to explore the Shaanxi History Museum. Discover – and perhaps feel a little mesmerized – at the 370,000 plus relics which chronicle China’s ancient history. Explore Big Wild Goose Pagoda, one of two iconic Buddhist pagodas in Xian. Depending on timing, the may be an opportunity to enter the top of the pagoda and cast your gaze out over Xian’s 1,400 years of history. Follow the view with a meditative walk through the temple and gardens. As the afternoon commences, you’ll be driven to the railway station to board the bullet train to Luoyang. On arrival in Luoyang, your friendly local guide will meet and transfer you to your hotel. Expect to receive a mini guided tour of Luoyang en route, including learning that the city’s name originates from it’s sunny-side location on the Luo River.
Meals included: Breakfast
Note: Your tour guide may alter your itinerary as the Shaanxi History Museum is closed Mondays.
Be sure to eat a hearty breakfast because there’s a full day of exploration ahead. The highlights of Luoyang are special and rare. Located approximately 40 minutes drive from your centrally located hotel, the day’s sightseeing starts with the Longmen Grottoes. First, take an escorted battery car ride along Yi River to access the scenic area where you’ll wonder at the incredible feat of crafting over 100,000 prominent Buddha sculptures. Different styles of Buddhas can be found here due to hundreds of years of continued construction. You’ll find representations from the Northern Wei Dynasty (386AD-557AD) and Tang Dynasty (618AD-907AD). Within Longmen Grottoes you’ll have time to explore Wanfo Cave (Thousands of Buddha Cave), so named for the fifteen thousand Buddha statues carved on the northern and southern sides. Incredibly, each statue is only about four centimeters (the smallest is two centimetres!) and despite vandalism and pillaging over centuries, thousands of Buddhas still survive. Your adventure through Longman Grottoes includes a visit to Fengtian Temple, the largest of the caves. Apart from the remarkable nature of the site, Fengtian Temple is home to some of the most truly exquisite carvings to be found anywhere in China. The Vairocana Buddha is located here. Grand and inspiring at over 17 meters tall, you’ll feel drawn by the Buddha’s peaceful expression. Before you drive on to Dengfeng, there will be time to cross the Yi River by foot and add to your beautiful travel memories from the day. Be sure to include at least one or two panoramic photos of the Vairocana.
Note: Today’s itinerary provides the option for a short river cruise on the Yi River. The cruise is the ideal way to experience vistas of the caves and limestone cliff at Longmen Grottoes. Please let us know if we can make this additional booking for you.
Sightseeing in the afternoon continues the Buddhist theme with exploration of White Horse Temple. Incredibly, White Horse Temple is reputed to be the very first Buddhist temple in China. Historians date its original construction at around 68 AD, although it has undergone reconstruction and refurbishment over its 1,900 years. White Horse Temple is an symbolic destination for those from China, India and elsewhere who follow the Buddhist tradition. Today you can gain an insight to its magnetism by immersing yourself in the tranquility of the thousand-year-old temple. Add to your knowledge and experience by contemplating the deep history shared by your local guide. Moving on from White Horse Temple, your travel by road continues for another 90 minutes on the way to Dengfeng, the location of Shaolin Temple. On arrival in Dengfeng, check in at your hotel and rest up for the next day’s Kung Fu experience.
Meals included: Breakfast
Although the highlight of today is visiting the Shaolin Temple, your day commences with a taste of things to come when you participate in a one-hour Kung Fu class, held at a local martial arts school. Be confounded and amazed at the skill and mastery that prepares you for arrival at the Shaolin Temple performance. Shaolin Kung Fu is an inspiring form of martial arts that has been studied for centuries and here at its birthplace you’ll have a great chance to watch an exciting Kung Fu Exhibition. You can’t help but be impressed and enlivened by the athletic displays of Tongzigong, Mantis boxing and Monkey boxing. After the show, there is an opportunity to continue exploring and learning more about the associated history. You will wander through the mountain gate and walk along the paved path leading to the ancient temple complex. Like any other longstanding historical site in China, the Shaolin Temple has witnessed the rise and fall of many dynasties throughout the ages and is redolent of a bygone era. This is a unique opportunity to immerse yourself in the history of the majestic halls, bell and drum towers, colorful murals and ancient stone tablets from Ming (1368 – 1644 AD) and Qing (1644 – 1911 AD) dynasties. A short distance away, you’ll find the peaceful Pagoda Forest, a cemetery of over 230 brick pagodas, where the ashes or bones of eminent monks are buried. Your guide will explain the variations in the height and size of graves reflect each monk’s Buddhist achievements or merits and virtues (the taller, the better). After a stroll through Pagoda Forest, it’s time for the return trip to Luoyang where you’ll board your train or flight to your next destination.
Meals included: Breakfast
Note: We love helping our customers make the most of their available travel time. Need helping planning your next destination? We can help. With a network that spans across China, we can take care of every detail and arrange your departure train or flight from Luoyang – or anywhere else while you’re in China. (A surcharge will apply).
Inclusions / Exclusions
- Admission fees: to sightseeing spots and activities specified
- Accommodation: hotels based on double/twin occupancy as specified
- Meals: as specified in the itinerary
- Tour guide: excellent private English-speaking guide
- Transportation: high speed train of Xian/Luoyang (First class seat for Luxury tours; second class seat for Superior tours).
- Transfers: land transfer with drivers as specified
- Travel Agency Liability Insurance during the tour
- Government taxes and fees.
- International/domestic flights and trains to Xian/from Luoyang
- China visa fees
- Gratuities to guides and drivers and any expense of a personal nature
- Our tour package does not include travel insurance. Please purchase travel insurance before your trip to provide 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.).