Journey throughout Western China

with visits to its Surviving Ancient Silk Road Treasures

(Optional extension in Yunnan Province includes Kunming, Dali

and Lijiang “Shangri-la”)

Journey throughout Western China

with visits to its Surviving Ancient Silk Road Treasures

(Optional extension in Yunnan Province includes Kunming, Dali

and Lijiang “Shangri-la”)

Detailed Itinerary
All itineraries subject to slight changes.
Please contact Baraka Journeys for most current itinerary

October 6 - 23 (or 29), 2011

With Raisa Gareeva

Arrangements can be made for those who would like to spend the night in extra days in Beijing at the beginning of the trip or in Shanghai at the end.

Flights on Main Journey:

#1 October 9         Beijing to Ürümqi

#2 October 14       Ürümqi  to Kasghar

#3 October 17       Kasghar to Ürümqi

#4 October 18       Ürümqi  to Dunhuang

#5 October 19       Dunhuang to Lanzhou (end 1st portion of trip)

#6 October 21       Lanzhou to Shanghai

Flights on Extension:

#6 October 21       Lanzhou to Kunming

#7 October 23       Kunming to Dali drive to Lianjang

#8 October 27       Lianjang to Shanghai

This itinerary is subject to slight revision based on recommendations of Raisa Gareeva following her inspection tour in March 2011.

On her inspection tour Raisa will be scouting families with whom we can dine, crafts people we can meet, a social service agency we can visit, a factory we can tour and other distinctive “Raisa” style touches.  These are not listed in the itinerary below as they are not yet fully identified.

Day 1  Thursday, October 6, 2011   (suggested flight itinerary for those coming from Los Angeles.  Travelers from other states should chose the most convenient itinerary of their choice for their location).

Day 1 for US travelers (depart USA)

Leave Los Angeles on Asiana Airlines                          12:20 am       Flight #203V

Day 2  Friday, October 7, (travel day)

Arrive Seoul Incheon (ICN) International Airport,

South Korea                                                                    5:00 am  

Leave Seoul Incheon International Airport

on Asiana Airlines                                                           8:35 am         Flight #331V

Arrive Beijing                                                                  9:40 am                   

Arrive Beijing (北京) (population over  13 million) meet and transfer to hotel.  Lunch and dinner provided.  Hotel name to be announced.     

Day 3  Saturday, October 8

A day of rest in Beijing and perhaps one or two light activities after the long flight and upcoming extensive journey.  Hotel name to be announced.

Day 4  Sunday, October 9

Our itinerary, focuses on travel throughout Western China, and in Yunnan province on the extension.  Before we begin the group journey, if any of you would like to book an extra day or two to explore China’s riveting capital of Beijing, which has undergone a near total transformation in recent years, we’d be happy to arrange this for you.

You will take an early flight (#1-approximately 4 hours) to the modern city of Ürümqi

(乌鲁木齐) (population 2.8 million) .  The flight departs at approximately 8:00 am, arrival is around 12:30.

Ürümqi  is the capitol of the Xinjiang Uighur Autonomous Region.  In Mongolian, Ürümqi  means “fine pasture” -- herdsmen came to settle here about 2,000 years ago.  Surrounded by the rugged, soaring, Tian Shan Mountain range and uninhabited desert, and known to be the most landlocked place on earth, Ürümqi  became an important junction of cultural exchange between east and west with the opening of the Silk Road.  There are over 40 ethnic groups living in mixed communities in Ürümqi  and their strong, colorful lifestyles and customs contribute to the uniqueness of the city.  After arrival, lunch at a local restaurant. 

This afternoon visit the massive, excellent Ürümqi  Exhibition Center (this is the same as the Xinjiang Autonomous Region Museum or Xinjiang Silk Road Museum which contains over 50,000 historical relics of the Silk Road.  There are 10 new halls and English captions.  The artifacts shown in the museum give us a glimpse into the ways of the various ethnic minority groups who have lived in the region.  Highlights of the collection include the famous and beautifully preserved mummies from vanished oasis cities of the Tarim Basin in the Taklamakan Desert (塔克拉玛干沙漠) the 17th largest in the world.  Taklamakan literally is a Uighur variant of an Arabic expression meaning “Go in and you won’t come out”.  These are of special interest not only because they are thousands of

years old, and have Caucasian features, but also because they have been recovered dressed in textiles remarkably well preserved.  The museum’s centerpiece includes the “Luolan Beauty,” a nearly 4,000-year-old woman believed to be of Indo-European descent.  (You may want to read the fascinating work of Dr. Elizabeth Wayland Barber The Mummies of Ürümchi).

There will be time to wander the old town of Ürümqi and stop at the Erdaoqiao Market either today or on October 14, depending upon how much time the group spends in the museum.  You will have a chance to try Uighur cuisine for dinner.  It is a culinary crisscross of Chinese and Middle Eastern influences.  Try the laghman, thick noodles topped with a sauce of spicy lamb, eggplant, tomatoes, beans and garlic.  Overnight at the Huanqiu Hotel Ürümqi (or similar).  1st overnight of 2 nights.

Day 5  Monday, October 10

By your coach, be driven to visit Tianchi Lake (known in English as “Heavenly Lake”), about 5 hours drive round trip.  This is one of the scenic wonders in Xinjiang, noted for its mountainous desert setting and views of snow capped peaks, located on the slopes of the Bogda Peak at an altitude of 6,200 feet.  Lunch and dinner at local restaurants.  Return to Ürümqi for overnight.  2nd night of 2 nights. Huanqiu Hotel Ürümqi (or similar).

Day 6  Tuesday, October 11

Take a full day bus excursion 45 miles south of Ürümqi to the Nanshan Pasture at the foot of the Tian Shan mountain range to view its spectacular mountain valleys, fountains, waterfalls and cypress and pine trees.  This ride takes about 2 hours.  Visiting the Nanshan Grasslands will give us a look at the Kazakh culture where they continue herding sheep and horses as they have for generations.

After lunch at a local restaurant, continue driving southeast towards Turpan (population over 252,000).  The distance between Ürümqi and Turpan is 2.5 hours.  En route to Turpan visit the 18th century Emin Minaret, one of the finest buildings on the Silk Road located in today’s China.  Half an hour east of Turpan by coach visit the site of Bezeklik, hewn into the Sengim Gorge.  (This site is also sometimes called “The Thousand Buddha Caves,” like the Mogao Grottoes (Caves) or Dunhuang Caves also are called).

Once an important way-station oasis on the ancient northern Silk Road, the city of Turpan currently has a population of nearly 200,000.  It is situated in an extensive oasis on the edge of the vast deserts of Xinjiang.  The ancient people here began to absorb cultural influences not only from China but also from India and Persia.

Turpan is a sub-sea-level oasis (300 feet below) on an arid, gravel plain, the second lowest place on earth, (after the Dead Sea).  In the spring, the snow from the Tian Shan Mountains melts into the Turpan basin creating vast natural underground reservoirs.  Modern irrigation has transformed Turpan into an agricultural area where cotton, grapes, grain and famous Hami melons are grown.  Dinner at a local restaurant and overnight at Houzhou Hotel in Turpan (or similar).  The 1st of 3 nights.

Day 7  Wednesday, October 12

Visit the ancient, but ruined city of Gaochang, once the a major staging post on the Silk Road, the walled capital of the Uighur people during its cultural peak in the 9th century, when there were 30 to 40 monasteries. 

Visit the Astana Tombs from the 3rd to 8th centuries AD.  This site is where more than 500 exceptionally preserved mummies with their belongings, including many documents and books, were discovered. 

Afterwards, visit the mazes of grapevines and mud-brick buildings in Grape Valley.  We will sample the grapes and learn about the Kerez underground irrigation system of ancient funnels which deliver water from the surrounding mountains for drinking, plant irrigation and livestock needs.   This ancient system was originally developed in Persia.   Enjoy dinner in an Islamic restaurant and enjoy a show of Uighur singing and dancing this evening in Turpan (吐鲁番).  Houzhou Hotel or similar for the 2nd of 3 nights.

Day 8  Thursday, October 13

Visit the red sandstone hills of the Flaming Mountain (about a 2 hour drive away).  Visit a Tuyu village.  Visit a with local family and perhaps have lunch with them.   Chinese dinner at the hotel.  Overnight in Turpan at the Houzhou Hotel (or similar).  The 3rd of 3 nights.

Day 9  Friday, October 14

Your bus will take you from Turpan back to Ürümqi about 96 miles or 2.5 hours bus ride on a good road.  Enjoy a day of activities in Ürümqi.  After dinner in Ürümqi, take an evening flight (#2) to Kashgar (approximately 2 hours).  Overnight at the Tianyuan Hotel (or similar) in Kashgar for the 1st of 3 nights.

Day 10  Saturday, October 15

Surrounded on all sides by arid deserts and immense mountain ranges, Kashgar (喀什) (population over 350,000) has been a welcome respite for weary travelers since ancient times.  According to historic records, Kashgar “the shining pearl” has been a town for more than two millennia.  It was, and is, in a way, “the last and most western frontier”.  This crossroads city is one of the highlights of the Silk Road because of its ambience, multi-culturalism and Islamic architecture.  Enjoy the many sights and experiences of this great Central Asian city, situated only 200 miles from the border of Pakistan, where the north and south Silk Roads joined between the Karakoram Range and the Taklamakan Desert.  As China’s most western station on the Silk Road, Kashgar is a traditional meeting place of cultures, Indian, Persian, Arabian and Chinese, layered one on top of the other, although it is unlike any other place in China and is one of the most isolated cities in the world.  Great contributions can be attributed to Kashgar, for enhancing the cultural communications between the Eastern and Western Worlds.  This fabled city greeted Marco Polo in the 13th century as he entered the Middle Kingdom, and it retains the exotic air and immense appeal of medieval Asia.  Although Kashgar was historically a melting pot of people and cultures, and continues to be so today, here the Muslim influence is great, as evidenced by the number of mosques and women with scarves.  As mentioned, Kashgar has a special geographical location, abundant natural resources, a rich “Western Region culture” and simple folk.  A living fossil of Xinjiang, Kashgar is a microcosm of society, a fine example being its unique Xinjiang Characters and Uighur folklore.  A trip to Xinjiang cannot be done without visiting Kashgar.  In Uygur language, Kashgar means ‘a place where precious stones get together’.  This name carries some truth with the finding of precious stones in the region, such as Kulun Jade and Hetian Jade. 

Kashgar however despite its medieval air, is a lively city of the present and influences from Beijing and the Han Chinese are dramatically changing the city and landscape.  Parts of the old city are now being razed.  Mao’s statue at People’s Square is one the few still standing in China.  Dramatic changes in traditional lifestyles are not always easily endured and in early 2010 there were ethnic demonstrations in Kashgar and uprisings in Xinjiang province.  Enjoy lunch in a Uighur family home and participate in traditional dining rituals.  The Uighurs are one of China’s 56 distinct ethnic groups, descended from Turkic peoples that inhabited Mongolia.  View the enormous, yellow-tiled Id Kah Mosque with its dome and minarets, built on the town’s busiest square.   This is the largest mosque in China, attracting as many as 10,000 worshippers  a day.  Visit the adjacent Tomb of Abakh Hoja, a revered Uighur statesman and Muslim Saint, built in 1442 by the ruler Saqsiz Mirza.  This burial place has five generations of his descendants, including an imperial concubine of the Emperor Quian Long.  Visit the old town and the workshops of local artisans who excel in all manner of production of ancient arts--metal work and crafting musical instruments, bread making, wood carving and the firing of handmade tile.  Overnight in the Tianyuan Hotel Kashgar (or similar) for the 2nd of 3 nights.

Day 11  Sunday, October 16

Visit the renowned bustling, chaotic, dusty, Kashgar Livestock and Sunday market (full of people everyday).  Miles from nowhere, mid-way between Rome and Beijing, this oasis used to be the last outfitting station on the Silk Road.  It is the largest market in Central Asia where over 50,000 people converge to trade.  Explore the animal, food and commodity bazaars, traveling a short distance by donkey cart.  You will see traditional silks, musical instruments, hand-crafted knives, embroidered hats and carpets.  This is an outstanding opportunity for photographs.  Time permitting, visit the Silk Road Museum.  Enjoy a family visit.  At dinner be treated to a very prized regional speciality of whole roast lamb.  Overnight in Kashgar at the Tianyuan Hotel (or similar) for the 3rd of 3 nights.

Day 12  Monday, October 17

Take a bus day-trip to Yarkand (莎车县) (population over 373,000) from Kashgar (about a 3 hour drive through the desert, passing picturesque villages on the way).  Yarkand, located at the edge of a seemingly endless sea of desert dunes is about as far deep into the Uighur heartland as one can go.  You will be in the Taklamakan desert. Visit the tombs there. Served under a grape arbor over-looking the desert enjoy a typical Uighur lunch of naan bread and noodles with pot roasted meat and vegetables.  Nearby you’ll notice locals enjoying noodles in small shops while sitting on kangs (long sleeping platforms) instead of chairs.

In Yarkand, visit the Altyn Mosque Complex and the tombs of Aman Isa Khan and the King of Yarkand.  Yarkand like many of the other cities you will visit in Western China, is inhabited by several ethnic groups including the Uighur, the Han, the Tajik, the Hui, the Uzbek and the Kirgiz.  Return by bus to Kashgar and take an evening flight to Ürümqi (Flight #3-2 hrs.)  Overnight in Hunqiu Hotel (or similar) in Ürümqi . 

Day 13  Tuesday, October 18

Fly to Dunhuang (#4-approximately 1-1/2 hours), located in the northwest desert corridor of Gansu province.  This 2,000 year old oasis town in a desert of sand dunes was the gateway between Central Asia and China, both for the exchange of goods and ideas.   It was once an important caravan stop of brilliant emerald fields set amidst sweeping brown sand dunes and snow-white peaks towering in the distance, on the Silk Road linking Central Asia with China. 

Dunhuang (敦煌) (population over 187,578) was where Islam, Buddhism and Christianity all were introduced to China.  Today you will visit to the Crescent Moon Spring, a lake miraculously lying in the midst of the Singing Sand mountains, where once a whole army was buried during a sandstorm.  You will also visit the Folk Art and Craft Museum and will have a chance to explore the town market.  Lunch will have been at the hotel.  Enjoy Chinese dinner at local restaurant.  Overnight Dunhuang Hotel.

Day 14  Wednesday, October 19

As an expression of their devotion, between the fourth and 14th centuries Buddhists carved an extraordinary system of caves into cliffs outside the town and filled them with some of the world’s finest Buddhist art.  Visit the Thousand Buddha Caves, or Mogao Grottoes (), a series of 492 carved temple-grottoes and the site of one of the most priceless troves of Buddhist art the world has ever known -- hewn into the steep cliffs.  These caves contain thousands of Buddhist murals and statuary, and constitute one of the world’s great repositories of religious art.  The Mogao Caves are the best known of the Chinese Buddhist grottoes and, along with Longmen Grottoes (which are also on this itinerary) and Yungang Grottoes, are one of the three famous ancient sculptural sites of China. The caves also have famous wall paintings.

These Caves are a UNESCO World Heritage site despite the centuries of neglect and foreign theft of the artifacts.  There are still murals, carvings, paintings, embroidery handwritten texts on Buddhism, Taoism and Confucianism as well as historic records, accounting books, letter and court records in Chinese, Tibetan, Sanskrit, Falu, Sute, Hetian and Huihe languages.  All of this is of great value for the study of politics, economy, culture, military affairs and foreign relations in ancient China.  These are set into a cliff wall of Echoing Sand Mountain in the Gobi desert.  This honeycomb of caves was constructed over a millennium, and it represents the height of Buddhist art and the world’s richest treasure house of Buddhist sutras, murals and sculptures. 

Later explore the Dunhuang Museum which displays unearthed material objects such as Hanjian, rough papers, barley, millet, big torches, and small torches used in the signal fire

platform and the model of the Great Wall.  In the courtyard in front of the main building of the museum, there is a group of large-scaled sculptures symbolizing people walking while leading camels in the ancient Silk Road.  Have lunch in a local restaurant.  Take an evening flight to Lanzhou (#5-2 hours) and have dinner and overnight at the Legend Hotel (or similar) in Lanzhou (兰州) (population over 3 million).

Day 15  Thursday, October 20

Situated on the Yellow River, Lanzhou the capital of Gansu province in northwestern China was an important link on the Silk Road as it was also a vital stopping place for caravans.  Lanzhou is strategically located on the Silk Road’s Hexi Corridor.  The mountains and desert there limited caravan traffic to a narrow stretch and fortification could control who passed.  This led to a period of great prosperity in the city that last nearly 1,500 years. 

Today, we will travel by bus approximately 80 km or 2 hours, to make an excursion to the elaborate 5th century ancient, Buddhist Bingling Si Temple Caves (also known as the Ten Thousand Buddha Caves), a spectacular site dominated by a 80 foot Tang Buddha cut into the canyon wall.  After the bus drive, you will transfer to the pier and board a privately chartered high-speed boat for the one hour journey on the Yellow River to the Caves, located in a stunning canyon setting.  The 183 caves carved into the cliff are considered among China’s most important Buddhist sites, displaying fabulous statues and frescoes.  There are also 82 clay sculptures and 9,687 sq. ft. of murals all with superb craftsmanship and artistic appeal.  The first cave was built there in 420 AD by daring Buddhists who descended from the cliff on ropes to carve their masterpieces.  Although the cave complex was enlarged gradually over many centuries, it is the most impressive work of both the Song and the Ming Dynasties.  These Caves also served as a Tibetan monastery.  Their inaccessibility spared them from destruction during the Cultural Revolution.  Overnight at Legend Hotel (or similar) in Lanzhou.

Begin Optional Extension here, or continue with last 3 days of the 18-day journey.

Day 16  Friday, October 21

Those travelers who chose not to take the extension, will take a flight to Shanghai () (population over 18, million, the most populous city of China) and they will be met by a local guide.  They will be taken to visit Nanjing Road, the Bund and the New Shanghai Museum.  They will have a Chinese lunch and dinner at local restaurants and will see an acrobatic show.

Day 17  Saturday, October 22

Those who are in Shanghai will visit the Yu Garden, the Children’s palace and time permitting, other spots of interest in Shanghai.  There will be a farewell dinner in a local restaurant.  Overnight in hotel, name of which to be announced.

Day 18  Sunday, October 23

Travelers will be driven to Pudong airport for return flight to US.

Leave Shanghai Pudong Airport   12:05 pm                  Asiana Airlines      Flight #362V

Arrive Seoul Incheon International Airport 3:00 pm                  

Leave Seoul Incheon International Airport 4:30 pm      Asiana Airlines      Flight #202V

Arrive Los Angeles      11:30 am                                     

Day 16  Friday, October 21

For those taking the Optional Extension...

Fly to Kunming (昆明) (population over 5 million).  (Flight #6-approximately 2 hrs.)  Kunming is the capital of Yunnan province, which is a tranquil, lush region that borders Vietnam, Laos and Myanmar.  Kunming is beautifully situated on Dianchi Lake surrounded by mountains.  Time permitting, take a cable car to view Dian Lake.  Because of its altitude and subtropical location, Kunming enjoys spring-like weather all year round.  Visit the famous Bird and Flower Market.   

Visit Western Hills, and Longmen Temple, (which means “Dragon’s gate”).  Totally cut on a natural precipice, with an elevation of 2,500 meters, it is the highest temple on the West Hill.  It is famous for its spectacular view.  Pass through the archway on which is inscribed “Longmen”.  Many inscriptions and steles are found here.  You will have a birds-eye-view of both Kunming city and the Dianchi Lake.

The Western Hills are sometimes called the Sleeping Beauty Hills--their contours are said to resemble the outline of a sleeping maiden when viewed from afar.  This densely forested range of hills on the western banks of Lake Dian is home to a number of Buddhist and Taoist temples and pavilions carved into the sheer rock face.

Kunming is located at a high altitude.  Due to the intense sunshine, sunglasses and sunblock are necessary.  The temperature here varies a lot between day and night, keeping warm in night is important.  Dinner at local restaurant and overnight at Jiahua Hotel (or similar) in Kunming for the 1st of 2 nights.

Day 17  Saturday, October 22

Drive to the Stone Forest, a giant geological wonder 55 miles southeast of Kunming.  This forest of limestone rocks is a most remarkable nature phenomena, which consists of innumerable bizarre shaped ancient limestone cliffs and peaks formed by wind and water erosion 270 million years ago.  These millions of years of tectonic shifts and erosion from wind and rain have resulted in today’s maze of sharp-edged fissures and sky piercing pinnacles, which are punctuated by walkways, ponds and pavilion lookouts.  The blue sky, white clouds and swordlike stone peaks reflect in the Jianfeng Chi pond.  Lunch and dinner with dance and cultural show.  Overnight at Jiahua Hotel (or similar) in Kunming for the 2nd of 2 nights.

Day 18  Sunday, October 23

Take an early flight to the charming city of Dali (大理市), (#7-approximately 35 minutes), an old walled town with some of the best quality marble quarried in China.  The population of Dali is over 3 million.  Dali’s altitude is 6,350 feet, the highest city we will visit on this journey.  Take a boat ride on Lake Erhai and see Butterfly Pool, a beautiful natural spring, on the northern tip of the lake.  In Zhoucheng Village visit a tie dye workshop and the market.  Try the local specialty, pot fish, for lunch.  In the afternoon visit the Three Pagoda Temple, which was built more than 1,000 years ago and explore the old town of Dali (population 40,000).  Dinner will include the famous local cuisine called “Rice Noodle Over the Bridge.”  Mule carts transfer you back to the hotel.  Overnight at Yaxing Hotel (or similar), in Dali.

Day 19  Monday, October 24

Drive to Liajiang () some 75 miles away, with a stop at Xizhou Bai Ethnic Group Village.  Lijiang is the only Chinese city listed as a World Heritage Site.  Its population is over 1,200,000.  The lush mountainous setting is breathtaking and is said to have inspired the Shangri-La of James Hilton’s film “Lost Horizon.”  Tourism has brought the town prosperity, and its newfound wealth has allowed Lijiang’s old town, Dayan, to preserve its picturesque charms.  Thankfully it has managed to escape the fate of many other tourist hot spots.  The colorfully clad Naxi natives amble through Lijiang’s rough hewn cobblestone streets, which wind among the ancient, plastered mud-brick houses with their fantastically flared tiled rooftops, and along the numerous canals.  Some souvenir shops have begun to appear along the old town’s streets, but their goods are by and large tasteful, and shopkeepers resist the aggressive tactics of their counterparts elsewhere in China.

The Naxi people migrated to Lijiang from northeastern Tibet in the Southern Song Dynasty (1127-1279).  Their original religion, called Dongba, after the name of its ritual specialists, resembles the nature worship and other concepts of pre-Buddhist Tibet.  The Naxi believe that all of the works of nature --heaven and earth, sun and moon, mountains and rivers, clouds and winds --have souls.  It has aroused the interest of the world’s scholars, particularly because the Dongha’s religious manuscripts were written with their own pictographic script.  Today there are over 150,000 Naxis living in the Lijiang area.

You will spend the day on a guided walking tour, exploring the local markets, visiting Black Dragon Pool Park and the Naxi Culture and History Museum.  In the evening you will enjoy a dinner of local Lijiang specialties in the old town and then attend a performance of an ancient Naxi Orchestra, composed of players in their 70s and 80s.  Overnight at the Ruiheyan Hotel (or similar) in Lijiang for the 1st of 3 nights.

Day 20  Tuesday, October 25

Drive approximately 1-1/2 hr from Lijiang to visit Yulong Snow Mountain, Yufeng Temple, Basha village.  Tucked between the Yulong Snow Mountain and the Haba Mountains, Tiger Leaping Gorge is one of the most scenic sites in Southwest China.  A thunderous roar of the gushing river welcomes you as you approach the 10-mile long gorge, which runs along the upper reaches of the mighty Yangtze River, the longest in China.  Walk along paths overlooking a waterfall 689 feet high with a series of more than twenty rapids, then visit the First Bend of the Yangtze.  Stroll through dramatic mountain hamlets, visit charming villages and enjoy a hearty lunch before returning to Lijiang by bus in the early evening.  Overnight at the Ruiheyan Hotel (or similar) in Lijiang for the 2nd of 3 nights.

Day 21  Wednesday, October 26

This morning you will be treated to some extraordinary scenery as you ride a cable car up to Yak Meadow.  In the distance, you will see stunning views of the famed Jade Dragon Mountain.  Your guided walk reveals the many unique species of plants first brought to western attention in the 1920s by the American botanist and National Geographic Explorer, Joseph Rocks.  After lunch, visit the delightful village of Baisha.  Its Yufeng Temple has well-preserved frescos and the local citizens maintain traditional hair and clothing styles.  Overnight in Lijiang for the 3rd of 3 nights.

Day 22  Thursday, October 27

Take a flight from Lijiang to the cosmopolitan city of Shanghai (#8-2 hours) and have lunch at the hotel.  This afternoon take a walk along the Nanjing Road, have a river cruise along the Bund and see the stunning new Shanghai Museum.  Later, visit the old town centre and enjoy dinner at the Green Wave Restaurant (or similar) followed by a performance of the famed Shanghai Acrobatic troupe.  Two nights in Hotel in Shanghai (hotel name to be announced) for the 1st of 2 nights.

Day 23  Friday, October 28

Continue touring the city with visits to the classic Yu Gardens, the Children’s Palace and the Jade Buddha Temple.  Visit Yuyan Garden, built in 1577 and featuring a magnificent zigzag bridge.  See the Jade Buddha Temple, which has two rare Buddha statues, each carved out of a single piece of Burmese jade.  Enjoy a unique and tasty vegetarian lunch at the temple.  Be treated to a festive farewell dinner of Shanghai cuisine at Old Mei Long Zheng Restaurant or similar.  Overnight at hotel to be announced, for the 2nd of 2 nights.

Day 24  Saturday, October 29

Bus drive to Pudong airport for the flight back to USA

Leave Shanghai Pudong   Asiana Airlines             12:05 pm           Flight #362V

Arrive Seoul Incheon International Airport            3:00   pm                       

Leave Seoul Incheon International Airport             4:30   pm  

Asiana Airlines                                                                                  Flight #202V

Arrive Los Angeles                                                   11:30 am                         

Email:  Telephone: (626) 570-1700   Contact: Christine Robison

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