Visit China and explore its highlights from Shanghai to Beijing via the Tibetan Plateau

Looking for adventure? Visit China and explore the country from Shanghai to Beijing on an adventure that offers more excitement than you can poke a chopstick at. Head from cosmopolitan Shanghai to Xi'an, once the starting point of the ancient Silk Road. Then cross the stunning Tibetan grasslands, which allows for glimpses of rural life and an ancient culture. And not to be missed, a walk along the Great Wall makes for a truly memorable experience before wrapping up the adventure in enigmatic Beijing.

Shanghai, China
Beijing, China
Physical rating
Cultural rating
Min 15
Group size
Min 1, Max 12
Carbon offset
1 190kg pp per trip


  • Set foot on the iconic Great Wall of China
  • Experience modern China in Shanghai
  • Stand among the ancient Terracotta Warriors
  • Climb to new heights on the Tibetan Plateau
  • See graceful Thangka paintings created before your eyes in Tongren
  • Ride the stunningly scenic Trans-Tibetan Railway
  • Escape to the breathtaking nature of Qinghai
  • Mingle with Tibetan monks in Xiahe


Begin your China adventure by taking a walking tour to Shanghai’s art deco delights. Stroll down the elegant Bund, discover the French Concession and visit the urban planning museum for a glimpse of Shanghai's future.
Travel to Xi'an and visit the incredible underground necropolis of the First Emperor, guarded by an army of terracotta warriors. Ascend to the top of the Bell and Drum towers, escape the noise of the city in the peaceful Great Mosque and savour some local food from the markets in the Muslim Quarter.
Stop over in Xiahe, a leading monastery town for Tibetans that plays host to swarms of pilgrims in their eccentric, colourful and finest outfits. Visit Labrang Monastery, one of six major Tibetan monasteries of the Gelugpa sect and home to some 1,200 Buddhist monks, and witness the remarkable traditions and worshippers walking the kora.
Known as the 'Gateway to eastern Guizhou', Tongren is home to the Longwu Temple, a fascinating Buddhist site whose origins can be traced back to the 1300s. Be lucky to witness a public Anduo Tibetan play, which are performed by monks throughout the year and make nearby villages hotbeds of diverse entertainment and cultural activities.
Journey onwards to Xining and stop off at Kanbula National Park en route for a spot of trekking. Be stunned by the incredible mountain scenes and become immersed in the forested hillside scenery. Then jump aboard the Qinghai-Tibetan Railway for a spectacular train journey to Beijing.
Explore some of China's most iconic sights, including the sprawling Forbidden City. In free time, feast on dumplings or rent a bike and cycle to the Temple of Heaven. A walk along the Great Wall of China is a fantastic finale to this adventure.
View trip notes to read full itinerary


Bus, Overnight sleeper train, Private Bus, Taxi, Train
Hotel (10 nights), Overnight sleeper train (3 nights)
Included activities
  • Beijing - Forbidden City
  • Beijing - Tiananmen Square
  • Great Wall - Jinshanling section
  • Informal Chinese language lesson
  • Tongren - Longwu Monastery
  • Xiahe - Labrang Monastery
  • Xi'an - Terracotta Warriors
  • Xi'an - Walking tour
  • Xining - Kanbula National Park trek
  • Xining - Wutun Thangka Artist Village visit


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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. An upgrade to Soft Sleeper trains is available on this trip. Please see Trip Notes for full details.

Trip notes

Want an in-depth insight into this trip? Your trip notes provide a detailed itinerary, visa info, how to get to your hotel, what’s included - pretty much everything you need to know about this adventure and more.

View trip notes


Our Explore China trips score an average of 4.75 out of 5 based on 4 reviews in the last year.

Explore China , May 2014

Explore China , May 2014