Beijing to Hong Kong Trip Notes

Beijing to Hong Kong

These trip notes are valid for departures from 23 December 2015 to 09 November 2016. View the trip notes for departures between 01 January 2017 - 31 December 2017


Last Modified: 21 Sep 2016
Beijing to Hong Kong
Trip code: CBRKC
Validity: 23 Dec 2015 to 09 Nov 2016
China really does have it all: tranquil countrysides offering jaw-dropping natural scenery and invigorating hikes, neon cities boasting incredible food and scintillating nightlife and points of historical, artistic and cultural interest at every turn. Get acquainted with this country's complexities and contrasts on this fascinating 23-day adventure that will have you walking the Great Wall, trekking through the Longji rice terraces, idling the hours away in serene Hongcun, drifting along the Li River and living it up in Hong Kong. Jam-packed with colour, culture and zeal, China will astonish you with the levels of diversity and distinction contained within its borders. TRIP CHANGES FOR 2017: To constantly improve our itineraries we take on all feedback from our previous passengers and from our local team. From 1st January 2017 this trip will change. We will reverse the order of the Yangshuo and Longji Rice Terrace days to reduce travel times.
Table of Contents
StyleAccommodationFinishing point instructions
ThemesAccommodation NotesEmergency contact
Is this trip right for you?Meals introductionVisas
Why we love itMealsWhat to take
MapMoney mattersHealth
ItineraryGroup leaderTravel insurance
Itinerary disclaimerSafetyA couple of rules
Physical ratingJoining pointResponsible Travel
Included activitiesJoining point descriptionThe Intrepid Foundation
Important notesJoining point instructionsFeedback
Group sizeFinish point
Your fellow travellersFinish point description
Style
Basix
Themes
Explorer
Is this trip right for you?
- We use a mix of public and private transport on this trip. However majority is public transport.
- We use overnight trains in hard sleeper class for some journeys.
- There are limited inclusions travellers can have the freedom and flexibility to plan their days.
- You will see the contrasts between North & South China on this 23 day itinerary.
Why we love it
- See the amazing contrasts between North & South China
- Visit the famous Terracotta Warriors
- Stay overnight in a unique Hakka village roundhouse
- Trek alongside rice terraces to the villages of Longji
- Walk along the Great Wall of China
Map

Itinerary
Day 1 Beijing
Nimen Hao! Welcome to China.
Your adventure begins with a Welcome Meeting at 6pm on Day 1.

You can arrive at any time during the day as there are no activities planned until this important meeting; please check with the hotel reception where and when it will take place, or check the reception notice boards. If you can't arrange a flight that will have you arrive at the hotel by early evening, you may wish to arrive a day early so you're able to attend. We'll be happy to book additional accommodation for you (subject to availability). If you're going to be late, please inform the hotel reception. We'll be collecting your insurance details and next of kin information at this meeting, so please ensure you have all these details to provide to your leader.
The capital of the most populous country on earth, Beijing is quickly shedding its historical face in favour of modernity. However, there are still plenty of places to go that will give you a great insight into the nation's ancient past as well as sights that showcase China's contemporary culture.
As we will depart for the Great Wall on Day 2 of this trip we highly recommend arriving a few days earlier in order to have time to see some of what Beijing has to offer. Some suggestions are:
Enter the imposing Forbidden City, former home to China's imperial rulers and filled with palaces, gardens and seemingly never-ending grand courtyards.
Catch a performance of the world renown Beijing Acrobats.
The Temple of Heaven Park is one of the most popular in Beijing and at any time of the day is full of people of all ages taking part in traditional pastimes such as tai chi, fan dancing, diablo, kite flying, water calligraphy and more.
A trip to the 798 Art District on a Beijing Art and Architecture tour will give you a taste of where art is heading in today's China as you wander the multitude of galleries housed in this old factory complex.
Pick up a bike for the day. You'll need comfortable clothes for cycling. Helmets may not be available for hire - if you wish to have a helmet you'll need to supply your own.
A metro ride can take you to the Summer Palace, once an imperial residence and the largest and best-preserved imperial garden in China.
Visit beautiful Yonghegong, or Lama Temple, which was built in 1694 and is the largest and best-preserved Tibetan style monastery building in Beijing.
Optional Activities
  • Beijing - Acrobat show - CNY250
  • Beijing - Tian'anmen Square & Forbidden City - CNY60
  • Beijing - Beijing by Bike Urban Adventure - CNY530
  • Beijing - Kungfu Show - CNY180
  • Beijing - Lama Temple - CNY25
  • Beijing - Summer Palace - CNY40
  • Beijing - Temple of Heaven - CNY40
    Accommodation
    King's Joy Hotel or similar (1 nt)
    Day 2 Great Wall
    Today you will have some free time in the morning to further explore Beijing before we take a private bus to a lesser-known section of the Great Wall (approx 3 hrs drive).

    We recommend you bring walking poles with you or purchase these in Beijing for our Great Wall walk on Day 3. You'll need reasonable fitness and walking shoes with good support and grip for our walk. There are many steps and slopes on the way so be prepared for a tough climb in sections. The views and experience though are a real highlight for all our travellers. Because we generally stay at 2 local guesthouses while at the Wall, you will be able to see the Great Wall at sunset or sunrise, an experience that should not be missed!

    An incredible piece of engineering, the wall stretches 6,000 km westwards from the mountain ridges north of Beijing. It was originally constructed to protect Chinese empires from the 'barbarians' of the north and even though it failed in this purpose, it's still without a doubt one of the country's most remarkable achievements, and an iconic destination.
    Accommodation
    Gubeikou Homestay or similar (1 nt)
    Day 3 Great Wall
    Today we rise early and we will trek from the Gubeikou section to the Jinshanling section of the Great Wall.
    We will walk over some steep, remote terrain for (approx 5 km or 3 hrs walking depending on fitness). Some parts of the wall are un-restored so you'll need to concentrate hard to keep your footing and in other parts the trail takes us off the wall to walk alongside it through the countryside.

    The trek will take around 5-6 hours along the Great Wall. If you do not believe you are fit enough to trek for 6 hours, you can go on the bus with the driver to Jinshanling and still have a chance to walk around this section of the Wall.

    Please note for CBRF departures during Chinese Winter (Nov, Dec, Jan, Feb) we may not stay overnight near the Great Wall as the Guesthouses we use do not have adequate heating for the winter months. During these months depending on the weather you might stay in Beijing on these nights to ensure our passengers comfort.
    Included Activities
    • Great Wall - Gubeikou section
    • Great Wall - Jinshanling section
      Accommodation
      Great Wall Jinshanling Hotel or similar (1 nt)
      Day 4 Great Wall - Beijing - Xi'an
      Today is a long travelling day for the group. We travel back to Beijing by bus (approx 3 hours) and here we board our first overnight train in Beijing to Xi'an.

      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. We use hard sleeper class trains for most of our overnight train journeys. These are not as rough as they sound – compartments are open-plan and clean, with padded three-tiered berths (6 to a compartment). Sheets, pillows and a blanket are provided. We recommend bringing your own sleeping sheet as the quality/cleanliness of sheets may not be what you are used to. Safe, hot drinking water is always available for making coffee, tea or instant meals. It is a good idea to bring a mug, spoon, knife and fork if you will be preparing your own hot drinks or food on the train (as these are not provided in cabins). Basic bathroom facilities are situated at the end of each carriage with toilets and washbasins. As toilet paper isn't always available, it's advised to carry some of your own; keep in mind general train cleanliness may not be to the same standard you are accustomed to. Most trains have a dining carriage where meals are available before the journey to supplement food available on the train.
      Accommodation
      Overnight Sleeper Train (1 nt)
      Day 5 Xi'an
      Arrive into Xi'an in the early morning from our overnight train journey and head to our hotel to freshen up. In most cases we may not be able to check in early due to availability. The Leader will try to secure one room for early check in, so the group to leave their luggage and freshen up, however this is always subject to availability.

      The imperial centre of China for 2,000 years, Xi'an is now a vibrant, modern city dotted with many interesting historical sites. A monument pays homage to the fact that this was the start of the famous ancient trading route of the Silk Road and the city is still surrounded by city walls.

      Your leader will take you on a short walking tour of the city centre, showing you some of the highlights such as the Bell & Drum Towers, Muslim Quarter, the City Walls and Gates.

      The rest of the day and evening is free for you to explore Xi'an:

      Here are some recommendations for your free time in Xi'an:
      Visit the impressive Tang Dynasty Small or Big Wild Goose Pagodas. The Big Wild Goose Pagoda is in a scenic area which also includes the Shaanxi History Museum and Da Cien Temple and is very popular with locals especially in the evenings when there is a nightly light & music show around the many fountains. The Small Wild Goose Pagoda is inside the Jianfu Temple and Xi'an Museum is also nearby.

      One of the oldest mosques in China, the Great Mosque in Xi'an features an unusual blend of Chinese and Islamic architecture. Still in use today, the mosque serves as a place of worship for Xi'an's large Muslim population, made up predominantly of the Hui minority. Although non-Muslims are not allowed within the main hall itself, a visit during one of the five daily prayer times adds another dimension of spirituality, no matter what your religion.
      Included Activities
      • Xi'an - Muslim Quarter Walking Tour
        Optional Activities
        • Xi'an - Great Mosque - CNY25
        • Xi'an - Big Wild Goose Pagoda - CNY80
        • Xi'an - Cycling on City Wall - CNY80
          Accommodation
          Nanfang Hotel or similar (1 nt)
          Day 6 Xi'an - Shanghai
          Today we explore Xi'an's most famous site - the Terracotta Warriors. It takes around an hour to get there and you'll hear all about this incredible archaeological find, discovered by farmers digging a well in 1976 after being buried for thousands of years. These clay statues of soldiers, horses and chariots, all standing in battle formation, were commissioned by the emperor of the Qin dynasty as part of his mausoleum and a number of pits are now on view to the public.

          After visiting the amazing Terracotta Warriors we head to Xi'an train station and board our second overnight train to Shanghai (approx 16 hrs).
          Included Activities
          • Xi'an - Terracotta Warriors & Guide
            Optional Activities
            • Xi'an - Bell & Drum Towers - CNY50
            • Xi'an - Small Wild Goose Pagoda - CNY50
            • Xi'an - Cycling on City Wall - CNY80
              Accommodation
              Overnight Sleeper Train (1 nt)
              Day 7 Shanghai
              Arrive in Shanghai and take the subway to our accommodation.
              We have a full day here to explore. Don't worry if you don't fit everything in as we will be returning to Shanghai to conclude our tour and highly recommend adding on a few extra days. Some things you might like to do during your time here include:
              Join your leader for a walking tour of historical Shanghai including the Bund with its spectacular array of art deco style buildings, the narrow winding lanes of the Nongtang or the European-influenced French Concession.
              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.
              The impressive Shanghai Museum houses one of the best collections of Chinese bronze and artwork - you could easily spend the whole day here discovering the various exhibitions.
              Wander the Yuyuan Gardens and Bazaar. These famous classical gardens were completed in 1577 by Pan Yunduan, a government official of the Ming Dynasty.
              Included Activities
              • Shanghai - Walking Tour
                Optional Activities
                • Shanghai - Propaganda Museum - CNY20
                • Shanghai - Shanghai Museum - Free
                • Shanghai - Yuyuan Gardens - CNY40
                • Shanghai - Urban Planning Exhibition Centre - CNY30
                • Shanghai - Acrobat Show - CNY180
                • Shanghai - Oriental Pearl Tower Viewing Deck - CNY150
                  Accommodation
                  Shanghai City Central Youth Hostel or similar (1 nt)
                  Day 8-9 Huangshan
                  Travel by public bus to Huangshan (approx 6 hours), otherwise known as Yellow Mountain. We will stay here in a local guesthouse for the next two nights.

                  The 72 peaks of Huangshan provide some of China's most stunning scenery. The paths are steep and often slippery, so you will need good fitness and suitable hiking shoes. How you explore the mountain is up to you, and either way can be taken by cable car. The eastern steps are shorter (7.5km, approx 3-4 hours), but with less spectacular views. The western steps take longer (15 km) and is more difficult. We recommend taking the cable car up, exploring the trails at the summit and then descending via the western steps.

                  Please note that Huangshan is subject to dramatic changes in weather. You will need to be prepared for mist, fog, rain and cool temperatures. September & October are considered the best months to visit Huangshan weather wise. In any season you should ensure that you take enough clothing, food and water supplies as well as extra money in case the weather changes and you need to take the cable car instead of hiking. As one of China's premier sights, you should also be prepared for crowds of domestic tourists during public holidays, although at any time of the year there can be long waits for the cable car.

                  After taking in the iconic beauty of Huangshan, which despite the crowds and unpredictable weather is a rewarding destination, we return to our guesthouse for a well earned rest.
                  Included Activities
                  • Huangshan - National Park Trek
                    Accommodation
                    Mr Hu's Guesthouse or similar (2 nt)
                    Day 10 Hongcun
                    Head by public transport through the bamboo and pine forests of Anhui provice to the picturesque villages of the Huizhou region.

                    A number of the villages are now UNESCO World Heritage sights and were even the backdrop to scenes in Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon.

                    We stay overnight in a village guesthouse, giving us plenty of time to wander the maze of cobbled alleys, admiring Ming dynasty architecture and ornate stone carvings, or clambering up into the hillsides for panoramic views of the pretty as a picture traditional settlements.

                    You might like to explore more villages on your own by bike or public transport, or just meander through the little market or along the waterways on foot.
                    Included Activities
                    • Hongcun - Guided Village Tour
                      Accommodation
                      Linhu Guesthouse or similar (1 nt)
                      Day 11 Shanghai
                      A long travel day by public transport takes us back to the big smoke of Shanghai.

                      Celebrate your arrival into Shanghai with a night out in one of Shanghai's chic bars or restaurants along the bund.
                      Accommodation
                      Shanghai City Central Youth Hostel or similar (1 nt)
                      Day 12 Shanghai
                      Today is a free day to further explore Shanghai.
                      As this is a combination trip, your group leader and the composition of your group may change at this location. There will be a group meeting to discuss the next stage of your itinerary and you're welcome to attend, as this is a great chance to meet your new fellow travellers.
                      Optional Activities
                      • Shanghai - Shanghai for Food Lovers Urban Adventure - CNY300
                      • Shanghai - Old Shanghai Urban Adventure - CNY350
                        Accommodation
                        Shanghai City Central Youth Hostel or similar (1 nt)
                        Day 13 Overnight Train
                        Free time to further explore this bustling city until this afternoon, when we board our first overnight train Shanghai to Guilin (approx 1500km/18-20 hours).

                        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. We use hard sleeper class trains for most of our overnight train journeys. These are not as rough as they sound - compartments are open-plan, clean, with padded three-tiered berths (6 to a compartment). Sheets, pillows and a blanket are provided. We recommend bringing your own sleeping sheet as the quality/cleanliness of sheets may not be what you are used to. Safe hot drinking water is always available for making coffee, tea or instant meals. It is a good idea to bring a mug, spoon, knife and fork if you will be preparing your own hot drinks or food on the train (as these are not provided in cabins). Basic bathroom facilities are situated at the end of each carriage with toilets and washbasins. As toilet paper isn't always available it's advised to carry some of your own, keep in mind general train cleanliness may not be to the same standards you are accustomed to. Most trains have a dining carriage where meals are available three times a day, and there are often snacks available on the train along the way. You may wish to purchase extra snacks of your choice before the journey to supplement food available on the train.
                        Accommodation
                        Overnight Sleeper Train (1 nt)
                        Day 14 Yangshuo
                        This morning our train arrives into Guilin.

                        We then take a public bus from Guilin Station to Yangshuo (approx.80km/2 hours) and walk the short distance to our hotel.

                        Yangshuo has become very popular with international and domestic tourists in recent years and has a great cafe and bar culture. It's also one of the best places in the country to get a feel for local culture and traditions and have 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 and towering spectacularly over rice paddies and the meandering Li River.
                        Optional Activities
                        • Yangshuo - Zhang Yimou's Impressions Show - CNY198
                        • Yangshuo - Tai Chi/Kung Fu class - CNY50
                        • Yangshuo - Cooking School & Market Tour - CNY150
                        • Yangshuo - Bike hire - CNY20
                        • Yangshuo - Li River Cruise - CNY100
                          Accommodation
                          Fawlty Towers Hotel or similar (1 nt)
                          Day 15 Yangshuo
                          Today is a free day to explore Yangshuo.
                          There are plenty of interesting activities to keep us entertained during our time here! Why not:
                          Take a bike ride to gain an insight into rural Chinese life. This is an absolutely stunning region to explore, as every turn in the road brings you to another picture-postcard location.
                          The spectacular outdoor light show staged by Olympic Opening Ceremony director Zhang Yimou,director of 2008 Beijing Olympic Games Opening Ceronmony, is a definite highlight and highly recommended.
                          Enjoy a relaxing boat ride along the Li River.
                          Take an early morning tai chi class by the riverside.
                          Accommodation
                          Fawlty Towers Hotel or similar (1 nt)
                          Day 16 Yangshuo
                          More free time for you today to see and do what you want. Freedom and flexibility is the name of the game, but your friendly local leader will be on hand to give you suggestions and tips!
                          A favourite thing to do for many of our passengers, is getting a feel for local produce with a visit to the local markets, then learning to cook some Chinese dishes at the Yangshuo Cooking School. The recipes are easy to make and the ingredients readily available outside of China so you'll be able to recreate them once you get back home.
                          Accommodation
                          Fawlty Towers Hotel or similar (1 nt)
                          Day 17 Longji Rice Terraces
                          Today we depart the picturesque Yangshuo and make our way to the the Longji Rice Terrace region of southern China. Today is a long travelling day, we will take 3 public buses before arriving at our destination (approx 200 km)
                          This evening we overnight in the minority village of Dazhai which is home to the Yao minorities.
                          The Longji region has some of the most extensive rice terraces you'll ever see. 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.
                          Included Activities
                          • Longji - Guided Rice Terraces trek
                            Accommodation
                            Dazhaijintian Guesthouse or similar (1 nt)
                            Day 18 Longji Rice Terraces
                            Take a day hike through the Longji Valley to visit local hilltribe communities and learn about village life. Expect to carry your own day pack and walk for up to five hours as our next accommodation may be in a different village. The hike can be tough going for some, with many uphill stretches and some very slippery paths. However, more experienced hikers will have no problems and there are many more optional walks available, uncovering great photo opportunities around every corner.
                            We overnight in the village of Ping'an this evening.
                            Accommodation
                            Countryside Hotel or similar (1 nt)
                            Day 19 Tulou Village
                            This morning travel by private bus from Ping'an to Guilin Airport (approx 150km) in order for us to board our flight to Xiamen.
                            We then transfer by private bus from Xiamen Airport to the Tulou Village (approx 150km/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 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. We have the option to try some simple local dishes for dinner tonight and breakfast tomorrow which may be quite different from what you are used to, but certainly authentic. The area has been developed for domestic tourism recently and sees lots of day trippers, but few people stay overnight so we will have a great local experience while here.
                            Included Activities
                            • Tulou Village - Guided hike & village tour
                              Accommodation
                              Tulou Yuqinglou Guesthouse or similar (1 nt)
                              Day 20 Xiamen
                              We will take a walk around the villages with a local guide, including a hike to a view point and nearby waterfall and between some of the clusters of Tulou houses. The length and distance we hike will depend on the weather, local conditions and fitness of the group, however most groups will spend a few hours exploring.
                              Transfer to by private bus to Xiamen for the evening (approx. 150km/3 hours).
                              Accommodation
                              Xiamen Runting Hotel or similar (1 nt)
                              Day 21 Xiamen
                              Today is a free day to explore Xiamen.
                              We suggest you jump on a ferry and head over to Gulang Yu, an island crammed full of historic mansions and villas easily navigable on bike or foot.
                              Visit the Xiamen University campus with is landscaped grounds and surrounding trendy bars and cafes for a chat with some local students.
                              Or traipse up the steps to Nanputuo Temple, one of the most important and active Buddhist sites in the region.
                              Pop into the Overseas Chinese Museum - many ethnic Chinese in Singapore and further afield were originally from Fujian province.
                              Accommodation
                              Xiamen Runting Hotel or similar (1 nt)
                              Day 22 Hong Kong
                              Travel by high speed train to the Chinese border at Shenzhen (approx 500km/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 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.

                              First you need to walk the short distance from the train station to the border, go through procedures to exit China, then to enter Hong Kong. Once all that's done, travel on the KCR train to central Hong Kong.
                              It was as a British colony that Hong Kong made itself known to the world - now back under Chinese rule since the 1997 handover, the city is still a unique and fascinating place to explore and 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. The locals are very proud of their Cantonese culture and history, so step out of the shopping malls and off the main streets to discover another side of the city.
                              As our tour finishes on day 12 and we only have limited time in Hong Kong, we highly recommend staying a few extra days to enjoy all this incredible city has to offer:
                              Take a scenic journey around the islands of Hong Kong on the famous passenger ferry service, the Star Ferry.
                              Venture up to the top of Victoria Peak for a bird's eye view.
                              Watch the harbour's spectacular light show - a stunning spectacle of coloured lights, laser beams and searchlights synchronised to music and narration that celebrates the energy, spirit and diversity of Hong Kong.
                              Ride the Peak Tram - the only way to truly experience the beauty of Hong Kong's natural wonders. Tens of millions of people from every corner of the globe have taken the ride, which affords a uniquely spectacular perspective of the city.
                              Optional Activities
                              • Hong Kong - Star Ferry - HKD15
                              • Hong Kong - Victoria Peak & Tram - HKD40
                              • Hong Kong - Nightly Light Show - Free
                              • Hong Kong - The Story of Hong Kong Urban Adventure - USD49
                              • Hong Kong - Old vs New Hong Kong Urban Adventure - USD49
                              • Hong Kong - Around Kowloon in 8 Markets Urban Adventure - USD49
                                Accommodation
                                Goodrich Hotel or similar (1 nt)
                                Day 23 Hong Kong
                                There are no activities planned for the today and you are able to depart the accommodation at any time.
                                Itinerary disclaimer
                                OPTIONAL ACTIVITIES: A selection of optional activities are listed in the day-to-day itinerary. This isn't an exhaustive list and should be used as a guide only. Prices are approximate and are for entrance only and don’t include transport to and from the sites or local guides unless indicated. All activities are subject to availability and it may not be possible to do all the activities listed in the time available at each destination. Where activities are considered medium or high risk, we work with operators whose safety and credentials we have sighted and assessed. This means that it is possible that you may find the same activity cheaper with another operator on the ground, however we cannot vouch for the safety or quality of that operator. Activities not listed above have not been assessed by us and as such our staff and leaders are unable to assist you with booking these activities. The decision to partake in any activity not listed is at your own discretion and risk.
                                Physical rating

                                Included activities
                                Great Wall - Gubeikou section
                                Great Wall - Jinshanling section
                                Xi'an - Muslim Quarter Walking Tour
                                Xi'an - Terracotta Warriors & Guide
                                Shanghai - Walking Tour
                                Huangshan - National Park Trek
                                Hongcun - Guided Village Tour
                                Longji - Guided Rice Terraces trek
                                Tulou Village - Guided hike & village tour
                                Important notes
                                1. A Single Supplement is available on this trip. See under the Single Traveller section of your Trip Notes for more information.
                                2. A scanned copy of the personal details page of your passport is required at time of booking in order for us to purchase your train tickets.
                                3. Please make sure you have access to an additional US$500, to be used when unforeseen incidents or circumstances outside our control (eg. a natural disaster, civil unrest or an outbreak of bird flu) necessitate a change to our planned route.
                                4. Overnight train accommodation on this tour is in 6-berth ‘hard-sleeper’ class. Bedding is provided and wash basins and toilet facilities (usually one with a toilet seat and one squat-style in each compartment) are available on all trains, but there are no showers or baths.
                                5. Please note while traveling through mainland China you will not be able to access some popular internet websites.
                                It’s important to let your family and friends know that you might not be able to stay in touch over your usual methods, be it – social media or email. Or let them know if you have set up a new email address in which you can access in mainland China.
                                The Chinese Government control and restrict certain websites. Websites on the blocked list could change at any time, any site could be restricted at any moment. Here are some of the most popular websites around the world that are blocked in China: Google, Dropbox, Gmail, Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, Google +, WordPress, LinkedIn,Yahoo Hong Kong, Yahoo Taiwan, Wikipedia and many more.

                                Group size
                                Maximum of 16 travellers per group.
                                Your fellow travellers
                                GROUP TRAVEL
                                As you travel on a group trip you will be exposed to all the pleasures and maybe some of the frustrations of travelling in a group. Your fellow travellers will probably come from all corners of the world and likely a range of age groups too. We ask you to be understanding of the various needs and preferences of your group - patience with your fellow travellers is sometimes required for the benefit of everyone's travel experience. Remember too that you have responsibilities to the group. If you are requested to be at a place at a certain time, ensure that you don't keep the rest of the group waiting. We have found time and time again that the very best trips we operate are those where the dynamics within the group work well - this takes just a little effort on your part. Due to privacy reasons we are unable to provide you with contact details and any personal information about your fellow travellers booked on your trip prior to departure.

                                SINGLE TRAVELLERS:
                                Our group trips are designed for shared accommodation and don't involve a compulsory single supplement. Single travellers share with people of the same gender in accommodation ranging from twin to multishare. Some of our itineraries have accommodation booked on a mixed gender share basis and where applicable this will be specified in our Trip Notes. On a selection of our trips, you have the option to pay a single supplement to ensure that you have your own accommodation (where available). Please note that this only applies to accommodation during the tour - pre-trip and post-trip accommodation will be booked on a single room basis.
                                Accommodation
                                Guesthouse (6 nights), Hostel (4 nights), Hotel (9 nights), Overnight sleeper train (3 nights)
                                GUESTHOUSES
                                In smaller, rural locations in China we often stay in guesthouses, which are mostly small family run establishments. Facilities are basic compared to hotels and towels may not be provided. Please note that on occasion the group may be accommodated in separate guest houses or home stays within walking distance of each other.

                                HARD SLEEPER TRAINS CHINA:
                                We use hard sleeper class trains for most of our overnight train journeys in China. These are not as rough as they sound - compartments are open-plan, clean, with padded berths (6 to a compartment) and sheets, a blanket/quilt & pillow provided. We recommend bringing your own sleeping sheet if you are concerned about the quality/cleanliness of sheets being not what you are used to. Most trains have a dining carriage where meals or snacks are available and all have hot water in each carriage for tea and instant noodles. While we aim to have our groups staying together there may be times where due to ticket availability the group will be staying in different compartments and carriages. Those travellers opting for a Soft Sleeper Upgrade (where available) may need to board the train from a separate waiting area and be in another carriage from the rest of the group. While railway services are rapidly being modernised in China, some train journeys on less frequented routes may use older rolling stock and the carriages of a more basic standard.

                                HOTEL ROOMS IN CHINA:
                                Some travellers have reported that hotels/accommodation in this region tend to have harder bed mattresses than those they are used to at home. You may like to request an extra quilt or bedding from the hotels if you find this an issue/

                                Smoking is prevalent in China and hotels generally do not offer specific non smoking rooms. Larger hotels with central air conditioning will sometimes transport the smell of smoke between rooms. While we ask our hotels to ensure our rooms are well cleaned and ventilated well before occupation in some cases this is not possible, and the smell of smoke may linger. Please speak to your leader about the possibility of changing rooms if you encounter this.

                                WiFi is often available in hotel reception areas and sometimes in rooms. Your leader will be able to advise on the best places to get connected.


                                As this is a Basix trip, accommodation is often on a multishare basis with shared bathrooms. Multishare includes triple and quad rooms or even dorm rooms. Couples may be required to share with other couples and you may be sharing with group members of the opposite sex. Couples or people travelling together may be separated due to rooming configurations.

                                Your accommodation may not always have private en suite facilities or air-conditioning. European hotels generally don't provide kettles or fridges. On occasion, additional beds may be fold-away or portable beds.
                                Meals introduction
                                Your group leader will endeavor to cater for specific dietary requirements where possible, and vegetarianism and gluten intolerance will be catered for in most instances. There are, however some meals and activities that are fixed in advance and therefore cannot be modified to suit dietary requirements. These instances will be indicated in the ‘trip notes’ itinerary. Please notify your group leader of any dietary requirements in your group meeting at the start of the trip.

                                For those suffering from particular food allergies, your group leader will endeavor to disclose to their fullest knowledge the main ingredients in dishes being consumed. It is, however, your personal responsibility to ensure that you do not ingest any foods to which you are allergic.
                                Meals
                                No meals included
                                Money matters
                                The official currency in China is the Yuan or Renminbi (CNY). 1 renminbi (yuan) = 10 jiao (mao).

                                ATMs are widespread, so the easiest way to access cash on your trip is to bring a credit/debit card. Please check with your bank about overseas withdrawal fees before you depart. Look for ATMs with your card logo.

                                Currency exchange is available at major banks and some hotels. The easiest foreign currencies to exchange are USD and EUR, however please be aware of the security risk of carrying large amounts of cash. In any case, some money should be taken as cash in case of emergencies - we recommend around US$400 per person. Commission is sometimes charged for currency exchange. Check the rate before you exchange and carefully check the amount you are given and ask for a receipt.

                                Please note that due to restrictions on currency conversion for foreigners in China it may not be possible to change left over CNY back into foreign currency, so please plan your budget and spending money well by withdrawing/exchanging what you need as you go.

                                The official currency of Hong Kong is the Hong Kong Dollar (HKD).

                                ATMs and currency exchange facilities are widely available in Hong Kong.

                                If you are happy with the services provided a tip - though not compulsory - is appropriate. While it may not be customary to you, it is of great significance to the people who will take care of you during your travels, inspires excellent service, and is an entrenched feature of the tourism industry across many Intrepid destinations. We recommend that any tips are given to the intended recipient by a member of your group, rather than collected and passed on by the group leader.

                                Tipping is entirely voluntary. The crew may be travelling with you for many weeks and usually they become good friends with most members of the group. It is sometimes easy to forget that they do work hard to ensure that you do have a great trip. If you feel you would like to tip them, they certainly would appreciate it. On a number of our trips, we also use a local guide as well as our own crew. These guides live and travel with you through their home country and it is usual to tip them when they leave. We recommend USD10 to USD15 per person

                                TIPPING IN CHINA:
                                If you're happy with the services provided a tip - though not compulsory - is appropriate. While it may not be customary to you, it's of great significance to the people who will take care of you during your travels, inspires excellent service, and is an entrenched feature of the tourism industry across many Intrepid destinations. Although can be difficult to source we advise you to carry small notes of local currency each day to make tipping easier.

                                In China tipping is not compulsory, but has become expected in the travel industry and is considered a way of showing appreciation for great service.

                                The following amounts are per person suggestions based on local considerations and feedback from our past travellers:

                                - Restaurants, markets, and taxi drivers - tipping is not customary and is not expected by the locals.
                                - Local guides: Throughout your trip you may at times have a local guide in addition to your tour leader. We suggest US$2-US$5 per day for local guides depending on their service and their involvement with the group.
                                - Drivers: You may have a range of drivers on your trip. Some may be with you for a short journey while others may be with you for several days. We would suggest a higher tip for those more involved with the group, however we suggest US$2-US$4 per day for drivers.
                                - Your Tour Leader: You may also consider tipping your tour leader for outstanding service throughout your trip. The amount is entirely a personal preference, however as a guideline US$4-US$6 per person, per day can be used. Of course you are free to tip more or less as you see fit, depending on your perception of service quality and the length of your trip. Remember, a tip is not compulsory and should only be given when you receive excellent service.

                                Please don't tip with coins, very small denomination notes, or dirty and ripped notes. This is regarded culturally as an insult.

                                At your group meeting on Day 1, your tour leader will discuss with you the idea of running a group tipping kitty, whereby everybody contributes an equal amount and then your group leader pays the tips while keeping a running record of all monies spent. The record can then be checked at any time and any money remaining at the end of the tour returned to group members. This is often the easiest way to avoid the hassles of needing small change and knowing when and what is an appropriate amount to tip.

                                EMERGENCY FUNDS:
                                We try to plan for every eventuality, but there are still some things beyond our control. Please make sure you bring an extra USD500 for emergencies (e.g. natural disasters or civil unrest). Sometimes these things necessitate last minute changes to our itineraries, and we can’t guarantee there won’t be some extra costs involved.
                                Group leader
                                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.
                                Safety
                                Many national governments provide a regularly updated advice service on safety issues involved with international travel. We recommend that you check your government's advice for their latest travel information before departure and ensure that your travel insurance covers you for all areas your itinerary covers. Please refer to our website's safety page for links to major travel advisories and updates on safety issues affecting our trip.

                                We strongly recommend the use of a neck wallet or money belt while travelling, for the safe-keeping of your passport, air tickets, cash and other valuable items. Leave your valuable jewellery at home - you won't need it while travelling. Many of our hotels have safety deposit boxes, which is the most secure way of storing your valuables. A lock is recommended for securing your luggage.

                                Your leader will accompany you on all included activities, however during your trip you'll have some free time to pursue your own interests, relax and take it easy or explore at your leisure. While your leader will assist you with the available options in a given location, please note that any optional activities you undertake are not part of your Intrepid itinerary, and Intrepid makes no representations about the safety of the activity or the standard of the operators running them. Please use your own good judgement when selecting an activity in your free time. Please also note that your Leader has the authority to amend or cancel any part of the trip itinerary if it's deemed necessary due to safety concerns.

                                For more details on the type of conditions and safety standards you can expect on your trip, please refer to Intrepid's operational safety policy on our website. We recommend that you take a moment to read through this information before travelling, and would appreciate any feedback on how well it's being implemented in the field:

                                FIRE PRECAUTIONS:
                                Please be aware that local laws governing tourism facilities in this region differ from those in your home country and not all the accommodation which we use has a fire exit, fire extinguishers or smoke alarms.

                                TRAFFIC AND DRIVING ON THE OTHER SIDE OF THE ROAD:
                                Depending on where you come from please note that drivers in this part of the world may drive on the opposite side of the road from what you are used to. Look both ways before crossing any road. Traffic can be a little more chaotic than you might be used to at home. Be aware!

                                PETTY THEFT AND PERSONAL SAFETY:
                                While travelling there is always the risk of pick-pocketing and petty theft, particularly in the more touristy cities. We recommend that you exercise caution when walking alone at night and encourage you to walk together and only on main, well-lit thoroughfares. Be particularly vigilant on public transport. Simple measures like carrying your day pack on your front, not hanging your bag over the back of your chair or on the floor and wearing a money belt will reduce any chance that your valuables should go missing.

                                BALCONIES:
                                Some hotel balconies don't meet western standards in terms of the width of the balcony fence being narrower than 10cm.

                                SEAT BELTS:
                                Please be aware that local laws governing transportation safety may differ from those in your home country and not all the transport which we use is able to provide seat belts.

                                MONEY WITHDRAWAL:
                                In order to avoid fraud, it is advisable that you withdraw money from ATMs located inside banks or guarded shops during business hours only.

                                TRAVEL ADVISORY:
                                Where we use a local partner to fully operate one of our itineraries, we use the travel advisory of the country where that operator is based rather than the Australian DFAT advisory. This itinerary is operated by our local partners Dragoman, and as such will follow the British Government (FCO) Travel Advice. To view these travel advisories please log on to:
                                Joining point
                                King's Joy Hotel 北京西华京兆酒店
                                81, Meishi Street 地址:北京市西城区煤市街81号
                                Xicheng district
                                Beijing
                                CHINA
                                Phone: +86 10 52171900
                                Joining point description
                                Located almost right in the heart of Beijing, King’s joy hotel offers great convenience for your stay in Beijing, close to Qianmen hutong area, Tian’anmen Square and Forbidden City. Metro station is only 5 minute walk which gives you easy access to the all the major sites in Beijing. Rooms are equipped with en-suite bathroom, A/C, and other basic facilities. Other services like bike hire, internet, and laundry are also available.

                                For more information, please go to http://www.xihuahotel.com/yg/jz/5.html


                                Joining point instructions
                                Beijing Capital International airport is located north-east of Beijing, 25 km from the city centre. One of the biggest airports in the world, it is relatively easy to navigate and many signs are written in English. Most international flights arrive at Terminal 3. For more information about Beijing Capital Airport, please go to http://en.bcia.com.cn/

                                An arrival transfer from the airport is available if arranged at the time of booking. Transfers cannot be arranged on arrival. Please advise your flight arrival details at least 14 days prior to your departure. If you plan to arrive earlier, this arrival transfer can only be offered in conjunction with pre-tour accommodation booked through your booking agent.

                                If you have pre-arranged an arrival transfer with us, our local operator, Ms Qi (Ms Chee), will have sent a driver to the airport who will be holding a sign with our company logo on it and your name.

                                If you arrive at Terminal 2, please meet your driver at the entrance/exit #7 after you go through the baggage claim area. I
                                f you arrive at Terminal 3, please meet your driver in front of the white jade screen wall with the dragon pattern, after you walk through Exit B. Exit B is the only international arrival gate in Terminal 3. Please note that Beijing Airport is very crowded so please be patient. If you have any problems finding the driver go to the information desk near your exit and ask them to call Ms Qi at (+86) 13671299816.

                                In any case, please take a printed copy of your hotel name and address in Chinese as shown in the joining point hotel section with you.

                                If you are making your own way to the joining hotel:
                                By taxi (the easiest option): Metered taxis are available outside the airport terminal building. You can follow the airport signs to reach to the official taxi stand. The taxi ride from the airport to our starting point hotels takes about 45 minutes to 1 hour and should cost around CNY120 (include CNY10 for the airport expressway toll). Show the taxi driver the address of the hotel in Chinese characters as shown below. **PLEASE AVOID TAXI DRIVERS WHO DON'T WAIT IN THE TAXI LINE FOR CLIENTS AND APPROACH YOU IN THE QUEUE CLAIMING THEY USE METER**

                                By airport express and taxi:
                                You can follow the airport signs to reach to the airport express station. Take the airport express (CNY25, service time: 06:20 to 22:50) to Dongzhimen station. It is suggested to hail a passing by taxi to go to your hotel. It will cost around CNY30 from Dongzhimen Station to your hotel. Show the taxi driver the address of the hotel in Chinese characters as shown in the Joining Point Section. **THERE IS NO TAXI LINE AT THIS STATION. AVOID USING TAXIS THAT ARE WAITING JUST OUTSIDE THE STATION EXITS. THEY DON'T USE METER AND TEND TO OVERCHARGE. **
                                Finish point
                                Goodrich Hotel 香港豪境酒店
                                92-94 Woo Sung Street, Jordan, Kowloon
                                Hong Kong
                                CHINA
                                Phone: 852 23322020
                                Finish point description
                                The Goodrich Hotel is located in central Kowloon and is within walking distance to the MTR Jordan Station offering transport convenience to all destinations. Here you can find all kinds of shops, restaurants, malls, nightclubs and entertainment along Nathan Road and the famous night plaza at nearby Temple Street.

                                http://www.goodrichhotel.com.hk/about.php
                                Finishing point instructions
                                Hong Kong International Airport (or Chek Lap Kok Airport) is situated on Lantau Island, 36km from the centre of Kowloon Peninsula. Even though it is one of the world's busiest airports, it is very easy to navigate and there are several different and convenient ways to get in to the city. All signs and directions are written in English.
                                http://www.hongkongairport.com/eng/index.html

                                A departure transfer from the airport is available if arranged at the time of booking. Please advise your departure flight details at least 14 days prior to your departure. If you plan to stay longer, this departure transfer can only be offered in conjunction with post-tour accommodation booked through your booking agent.

                                Your tour leader can advise you when is the best time to leave for your flight depending on local traffic condition. It is suggested to leave from your hotel at least 3 hours before your flight time. By taxi, it’ll take about 45minutes to go to the airport at a cost around HKD300.

                                By airport express, you can take a taxi to Kowloon airport express station (about HKD60), then take airport express to the airport (90HKD).
                                Emergency contact
                                While we always endeavour to provide the best possible holiday experience, due to the nature of travel and the areas we visit sometimes things can and do go wrong. Should any issue occur while you are on your trip, it is imperative that you discuss this with your group leader or our local representative straight away so that they can do their best to rectify the problem and save any potential negative impact on the rest of your trip.

                                We recognise that there may be times when your group leader/local partner may not be able to resolve a situation to your satisfaction - if this is the case, please ask the leader to speak to their direct manager.

                                You may also choose to provide details in your online feedback, which we ask you to complete within 30 days of the end of your trip. But we do ask you to be aware that it is very difficult for us to provide any practical help after the trip is complete.

                                For general enquiries or questions about your booking, please contact your agent or adventure specialist, or visit us at www.intrepidtravel.com/contact-us

                                In case of a genuine crisis or emergency, you can reach our local operator on the number below.

                                Intrepid's Local Beijing Office: +86 106 406 7328

                                Intrepid's Local Beijing Office: +861064067328
                                Visas
                                Visas are the responsibility of the individual traveller. Entry requirements can change at any time, so it's important that you check for the latest information. Please visit the relevant consular website of the country or countries you’re visiting for detailed and up-to-date visa information specific to your nationality. Your consultant will also be happy to point you in the right direction with acquiring visas. Visas can take several weeks to process, so familiarise yourself with any requirements as soon as you have booked your trip to allow for processing time.

                                CHINA VISA:
                                Most nationalities require a visa for mainland China. You must obtain your Chinese visa in advance. It is not possible to get a visa on arrival and Chinese visas can be difficult to obtain outside your country of residence. You may be able to apply for your visa in Hong Kong If you have time here before your trip departs. You will need a Single Entry Tourist for your trip valid for 30 days.

                                Hong Kong is not considered part of mainland China for immigration purposes and most nationalities do not require a visa. Please check with an embassy for specific requirements for Hong Kong.

                                Please make sure if you have a transit anywhere in China before arriving at your destination that you check with your airline to see if the transit will require using your visa.

                                INFORMATION REQUIRED FOR CHINESE VISA APPLICATION:
                                List the destinations you will visit in China in chronological order on your application form. Do not mention Tibet anywhere on your application form, even if your tour goes here. You will be given a specific itinerary to use if booking a Tibet trip. While Tibet is not off limits to travellers, you must first obtain a Chinese visa BEFORE we apply for your Tibet permit on your behalf.
                                Including Tibet on your visa application without being booked on a government arranged tour will lead to your visa being rejected.

                                Name of Host/Inviting Organisation:
                                Intrepid Travel Beijing Co. Ltd.
                                606 InterChina Commercial Building
                                33 Dengshikou Street
                                Dongcheng District
                                Beijing 100006
                                +86 10 6406 8022

                                DOCUMENTS REQUIRED FOR VISA APPLICATION:
                                * Hotel List - this will be sent to you by Intrepid or your travel agent at time of booking. If you do not receive this, email us with your booking number and trip details.
                                * Official invitation from licensed Chinese tourism company - this will be provided from us together with the Hotel List to all travellers regardless of whether it is required by the consulate or not and will assist with your application.
                                * Itinerary – print off a copy of your specific trip itinerary from our website www.intrepidtravel.com and include it with your application, marking the dates you will visit each destination if required (exception - Tibet tours)
                                * Photocopy of your passport
                                * Passport size photos (up to 4 may be required)
                                * Check with the consulate for any other specific requirements

                                DOCUMENTS REQUIRED FOR TRAIN TICKET BOOKINGS:
                                Intrepid requires you send the following at the time of booking or at least 30 days prior to travel:
                                *Clear, colour scanned copy of the personal details page of your passport
                                (Please make sure that this copy is for the passport that you will be travelling on. If you have to renew your passport after booking please notify us as soon as you have a new passport number and bring your old passport with you on your trip in case it is requested)

                                HONG KONG VISAS
                                Although Hong Kong is now part of the People’s Republic of China it remains a Special Administrative Region with its own immigration controls. Most nationalities can visit Hong Kong for up to 6 months without a visa.
                                If you are travelling to mainland China via Hong Kong you must get a Chinese visa before arrival at the border. If you are entering Hong Kong via mainland China and leaving again via the mainland you will need a double or multiple entry visa for mainland China.
                                What to take
                                DRINKING WATER IN CHINA:
                                Tap water is not generally palatable, however in China, clean and safe drinking water is widely available for free in hotels, restaurants, bus and train stations. This is often provided as hot water as Chinese are great tea drinkers. Consider bringing a bottle that you can fill with hot water and allow to cool down. Alternatively, ask your leader for their favourite kind of tea and stay hydrated the local way!

                                Smaller bags or backpacks with wheels are convenient although we recommend your bag also has carry straps as you will need to carry your own bag up and down the many steps in train stations. Overweight or bulky bags will be difficult to store on the overnight train and will need to be kept on your bed if they do not fit in the overhead racks or storage space under the bottom bunk.

                                Your clothes and equipment should be appropriate for the conditions you are travelling in. On overland trips Dragoman will provide all camping equipment apart from sleeping bags and ground mats (except on routes between Nairobi and Cape Town where ground mats are provided).

                                PERSONAL MEDICAL KIT:
                                All of our trucks have a fully stocked medical kit onboard for use in emergency situations only. Therefore in addition to this we recommend that you purchase your own personal medical kit.

                                ELECTRICAL EQUIPMENT
                                Your vehicle will be equipped with a 12 volt socket so to charge your iPod, MP3 player, camera, laptop and mobile phone you will need a DC 12 volt adapter - the type that can be used from a cigarette lighter in your car. Please be aware that only one piece of equipment can be charged at a time and it will not be allowed if there is a risk of running the vehicle´s batteries low. Batteries may also be recharged from hotel room wall sockets and the majority of the campsites we stay at have electricity points, so please bring along your normal charging adapters as well. You will need to ensure that you have the correct country adaptor for your specific charger.
                                Health
                                All Intrepid travellers need to be in good physical health in order to participate fully on this trip. When selecting your trip please make sure you have read through the itinerary carefully and assess your ability to cope with our style of travel. Please note that if, in the opinion of our group leader or local guide, any traveller is unable to complete the itinerary without undue risk to themselves and/or the rest of the group, Intrepid Travel reserves the right to exclude them from all or part of a trip without refund.

                                You should consult your doctor for up-to-date medical travel information or for any necessary vaccinations and anti-malarial requirements before departure. We recommend that you carry a first aid kit as well as any personal medical requirements (including a spare pair of glasses) as they may not easily be obtained at the locations on this trip. For legal reasons our leaders and guides are prohibited from administering any type of drugs including headache tablets and antibiotics. Please ensure that you are adequately prepared.

                                AIR POLLUTION IN CHINA:
                                The high levels of air pollution in major urban and industrialised areas in China may aggravate bronchial, sinus or asthma conditions. Children, the elderly and those with pre-existing medical conditions may be especially affected. Please ensure you bring the required medication with you if you have any of these type of medical conditions.

                                You can check the pollution index levels for many cities on the following website: http://aqicn.org/city/beijing
                                Travel insurance
                                Travel insurance is compulsory for all our trips. We require that, at a minimum, you are covered for medical expenses including emergency repatriation. We strongly recommend that the policy also covers personal liability, cancellation, curtailment and loss of luggage and personal effects.

                                When travelling on a trip, you won't be permitted to join the group until evidence of travel insurance and the insurance company's 24 hour emergency contact number has been seen by your leader.

                                If you have credit card insurance your group leader will require details of the participating insurer/underwriter, the level of coverage, policy number and emergency contact number rather than the bank's name and credit card details. Please contact your bank for these details prior to arriving in-country.
                                A couple of rules
                                Illegal drugs will not be tolerated on our trips. Possessing or using drugs not only contravenes the laws of the land, but also puts the rest of the group at risk. Smoking marijuana and opium is a part of local culture in some parts of the world but is not acceptable for Intrepid travellers. Intrepid's philosophy of travel is one of respect towards everyone we encounter and in particular, the local people who make our destinations such special places. The exploitation of prostitutes is completely contrary to this philosophy. Our group leader has the right to expel any member of the group if drugs are found in their possession or if they use prostitutes.

                                Everyone has the right to feel safe and secure on their trip. We don’t tolerate any form of sexual harassment at Intrepid, either between passengers or involving our leaders or local operators. Sexual relationships (consensual or otherwise) between a leader and a passenger are unacceptable. If you ever feel another person is behaving inappropriately please inform us immediately by contacting the emergency contact number detailed in these trip notes.
                                Responsible Travel
                                We believe strongly in low impact or rather positive impact tourism. Broadly speaking this means that we try to minimise the negative aspects of tourism on the local cultures and environments that we visit and highlight the positive aspects. Please visit our website for further details and suggestions on how you can be a responsible traveller.

                                LOCAL DRESS:
                                Dress standards are conservative throughout Asia, especially outside major cities. To respect this and for your own comfort, we strongly recommend modest clothing. This means clothing that covers your shoulders and knees by wearing sleeves and long trousers. Loose, lightweight, long clothing is both respectful and cool in areas of predominantly hot climate. In many rural areas women will need to wear modest clothing even to swim. Singlets, tank tops and topless sun bathing are all unacceptable. When visiting religious sites men often need to wear long trousers and women a long skirt or sarong.

                                http://www.intrepidtravel.com/ourtrips/rt/responsibletraveller

                                The Intrepid Foundation
                                Since Intrepid Travel commenced operating in 1989 we've been committed to giving something back to the communities we visit. One way has been through our support for local humanitarian, development and conservation projects. Many of our travellers want to contribute something too. Whilst it is often tempting to give hand-outs to those less fortunate, this has the potential to promote a culture of begging and dependency. Handouts are not a sustainable way for individuals or communities to live. That’s why we established The Intrepid Foundation – to make it easier for travellers wishing to give back to communities in an effective and meaningful way.

                                The Intrepid Foundation is a not-for-profit fund offering a selection of excellent grassroots organisations which you can contribute to. All donations to The Intrepid Foundation will be matched by Intrepid Travel dollar for dollar (up to AU$1,000 per donor and a total of AU$400,000 for all donors in each financial year, excluding emergency appeals). And every cent gets there as Intrepid Travel pays for all the administration costs. Donating is simple and secure. Please ask your leader for information on the projects we support through The Intrepid Foundation or go to our website:

                                http://www.theintrepidfoundation.org/

                                Feedback
                                After your travels, we want to hear from you! We realise that our partner company may ask you to complete paper or online feedback following your trip, however we would also like to know what you thought and encourage you to submit your feedback to us too. We rely on your feedback. We read it carefully. Feedback helps us understand what we are doing well and what we could be doing better. It allows us to make improvements for future travellers.

                                http://www.intrepidtravel.com/feedback