6 nights from: $1795 Single Supplement: FREE
Delve into the beauty and intrigue of Eastern China—from Shanghai, where steel-and-glass towers face off against Art Deco buildings along the Huangpu River—to 2,500-year-old Suzhou, with its serene Wang Shi Yuan gardens and its expansive grid of waterways, which earned it its nickname, “Venice of the Orient.”
- It's Included:
- Airfare from Shanghai to Seoul
- Accommodations for 6 nights
- 12 meals—6 breakfasts, 4 lunches (including a Home-Hosted Lunch), and 2 dinners
- 5 small group activities
- Services of a local O.A.T. Trip Leader
- Gratuities for local guides, drivers, and luggage porters
- All transfers
Fly overnight from the U.S. to Shanghai, China.
Arrive in Shangai, where an O.A.T. representative will greet you and help you transfer to our hotel.
Today is your opportunity to experience the gems of Shanghai, old and new. We begin after breakfast with a visit to the Bund, once the city’s most recognizable areas thanks to the row of elegant Art Deco buildings hugging the Huangpu River. It’s hard not to notice that the European influence on Shanghai is apparent everywhere—from the historic Bank of China to the clock tower of the British Customs House—which you’ll view as we stroll.
Next, we'll explore the lovely Yuyuan Gardens (often shortened to just “Yu”) in the Old City, founded in 1557 and 18 years in the making. Manicured pavilions, sparkling fish ponds, and traditional tea houses await us as we stroll the gardens this morning.
After an included lunch together at a local restaurant, we'll visit the Shikumen area. Literally translated, Shikumen means "stone gate," referring to the area's east-meets-west architectural style. These two- to three-story lilong residences—or "lane houses"— line the streets, and boast stone arches, tall brick walls, and traditional Chinese courtyards.
We'll return to our hotel this evening for an orientation walk followed by dinner at a local restaurant.
Today we'll begin our day by joining the stream of local life at the Shanghai train station. From here, we'll depart for 2,500-year-old Suzhou in China's fabled Silk Region, arriving mid-morning in the city which so inspired Marco Polo.
Our time here begins with a visit to Wang Shi Yuan garden. A UNESCO World Heritage Site which translates to "Master of the Nets," Wang Shi Yuan will arouse the senses with its uniquely Chinese combination of nature, architecture, and artistic flavor. Its title refers to the lifestyle of Chinese fishermen, an image the garden's creator wanted its atmosphere to evoke in the minds of wandering visitors. We’ll enjoy lunch at a local restaurant before continuing to the Suzhou Museum to admire ancient Chinese art and handcrafts.
After returning to our hotel late this afternoon, we'll enjoy some time at leisure. Dinner is on your own tonight.
With more than 40% of the city covered by water (earning it the nickname “Venice of the Orient”), Souzhou is a city unlike any other in China. Today, we'll head to Souzhou's old town of Luzhi, where we'll enjoy a walking tour and learn how to make shortbread, a favorite local snack. Then, we’ll experience the city’s chessboard of waterways and walkways firsthand when we split into small groups and cruise the canals in small rowing boats. We’ll enjoy lunch at a restaurant in Luzhi before returning to our hotel for some time at leisure. Tonight, we'll regroup for dinner at a local restaurant.
After breakfast at our hotel, we set out for a traditional fishing village on the Yangtze Delta plain to experience the local way of life. We'll enjoy a walking tour of the village, and mingle with local families who live in boats along Tahiu Lake. The third largest freshwater lake in China, Taihu Lake is well known for its thriving fishing industry, and the unique limestone formations that can be found where its banks meet the foot of nearby Dongting Mountain. These "Taihu Stones" are often used as ornamental elements in traditional Chinese gardens.
Next, we have lunch either in a local restaurant or on one of the local ships (weather permitting) before heading into downtown Suzhou. Here, we'll enjoy a walking tour of the city's Bronze Buddha Temple, chat with the resident monks and witness their afternoon chanting ritual. Early this evening, we'll return to our hotel and depart for dinner at a local restaurant.
Today, after an included breakfast at our hotel, enjoy time at leisure in Suzhou and lunch on your own. We'll then board the high-speed train to Shanghai. After transferring to our new hotel, the rest of the afternoon and evening are free for discoveries on your own. You can take our Shanghai Acrobatic Show optional tour, which includes dinner. Otherwise, the rest of the day is at leisure.
This morning, we'll depart after breakfast for the Pudong airport. We arrive in Seoul this afternoon where we join our fellow travelers on Day 2 of our South Korea and Japan: Temples, Shrines & Seaside Treasures adventure.