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China & The Yangtze River

  • Destination: Asia & India, China
  • Duration: 14 days
  • Start: 10/04/2017
  • End: 10/17/2017
  • Double Occupancy: $6795

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Discover China’s past and present – from the bustling capital, Beijing, to the myriad faces of the Terra Cotta Warriors in Xian and the rising skyscrapers of Shanghai. Explore the storied Yangtze River on an all-balcony river cruiser, the luxurious Yangzi Explorer. China is a must-see destination. The country plays an extremely important role in world politics and is home to some of the world’s most famous historic sites, such as the Great Wall, the Forbidden city and the Terra Cotta Warriors. Join us for this classic, yet, fresh look at an ancient and ultra-modern society. We feature fine restaurants, luxury hotels and a cruise aboard the best river cruiser on the Yangtze river.
Start in Shanghai, End in Beijing.

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Please click ( + ) signs by each day for detailed information.

Day 1

WED OCT 4, 2017 • Depart the USA

Depart the USA on any regularly scheduled flight to Shanghai, China.
Day 2

THU OCT 5 • Arrive Shanghai

Welcome to Shanghai!
2Transfer to the Fairmont Shanghai Peace Hotel~5* overlooking Huangpu River and “The Bund” – noted for its unique styles of architecture and one of the most famous tourist sites in Shanghai. Evening is free for you to relax from your flight.

Hotel: Fairmont Shanghai Peace Hotel | 5☆
Room: Standard
Meals: None

Day 3

FRI OCT 6 • Shanghai

shanghaiToday, start with a visit to Shanghai’s Old Town (“Nanshi”) – originally built in 1553AD as a walled enclosure to fend off Japanese pirates – now the most ancient section of Shanghai, noted for its maze of small, winding streets, traditional Chinese architecture, and the ever-bustling Yu (“Pleasing and Satisfying”) Bazaar. Next, wander the landscaped paths and enjoy the solitude of Yuyuan (“Peace and Health”) Garden – originally built in 1577AD, it has remained a welcoming and calming mecca for Shanghai’s populace for generations. Enjoy Lunch at a local restaurant.

After lunch, discover the Shanghai Museum, “…one of the world’s best representations of Chinese art and artifacts.” – located in the center of Shanghai at the city’s People’s Square, this large complex houses over 120,000 historical relics in the twelve Chinese art categories (i.e. bronze, calligraphy, sculpture etc.). Continue from the museum to Shanghai’s former French Concession – an enclave created in 1849 as the result of the Treaty of Nanking with land conceded by China to establish a French colony in Shanghai – displaying a pleasant mix of wide, tree-lined streets and European “Art Deco” architecture.

Welcome Dinner this evening.

Hotel: Fairmont Shanghai Peace Hotel | 5☆
Room: Standard
Meals: Lunch, Dinner

Day 4

SAT OCT 7 • Shanghai | Zhujiajiao | Shanghai

zhujiajiaoFounded over 1,700 years ago, Zhujiajiao (“Water Town”) started out as an ancient fishing village, and became a small, canal-linked hamlet that would, over the centuries, emerge as a bustling trading hub within Shanghai proper. Stroll along its centuries-old streets and explore the many ancient bridges crisscrossing its canals, or take a boat ride to discover the town’s unique character and charm. Enjoy lunch at a local Chinese restaurant. Return to the hotel to relax before dinner and a night at the theatre.

This evening, enjoy a spectacular performance at Shanghai Era Acrobatics, a multimedia theatrical spectacular mixing traditional 2000-year-old Chinese acrobatics with 21st Century high technology.

Hotel: Fairmont Shanghai Peace Hotel | 5☆
Room: Standard
Meals: Lunch, Dinner

Day 5

SUN OCT 8 • Shanghai | Yichang | Sanctuary Yangzi Explorer

yichangCheck out of the hotel and transfer to the airport for flight to Yichang, an ancient, yet thoroughly modernized city, lying along both banks of the Yangtze River. Upon arrival, board the luxurious river ship, the 5☆Sanctuary Yangzi Explorer for our four-night cruise on an upstream course along the Yangzi River the following morning, through the beautiful Three Gorges region. The total length of this cruise is 660 kilometres (402 miles) and is famous for its stunning scenery and is a historically and culturally important location for China.

A documentary film will be shown in your cabin to acquaint you with China’s “Three Gorges Dam Project”.

In the evening, dinner is served in the dining room.

Overnight: Sanctuary Yangzi Explorer | 5☆
Cabin: Deluxe or per your choice
Meals: Lunch, Dinner

Day 6

MON OCT 9 • Xiling Gorges & Three Gorges Dam Project

threegorgesStart your morning with a traditional Chinese exercise and work up an appetite for the international buffet breakfast. After breakfast, view the Xiling Gorge or choose the ‘Tribe of Three Gorges’ tour – a 2.5 hour walk through stunning landscapes where you can experience an ancient wedding ceremony (tour at an additional cost and subject to availability). After lunch, visit the Three Gorges Project Dam Site and Exhibition Centre. The project was started in 1992, partially completed in 2009 and is due to be finished in 2015. The dam spans 1.2 miles in width and 600 feet in height, and is the largest and most expensive engineering project in the world.

In the afternoon, enjoy afternoon tea and a selection of activities on board, including a Chinese Medicine demonstration. Tonight there will be a Captain’s reception followed by an a la carte dinner. After, take part in karaoke or retire to your cabin for a cultural movie.

Overnight: Sanctuary Yangzi Explorer | 5☆
Cabin: Deluxe or per your choice
Meals: Lunch, Dinner

Day 7

TUE OCT 10 • Shennong Stream, Qutang Gorge, Wu Gorge

shennong2Start your morning with a traditional Chinese exercise and work up an appetite for the international buffet breakfast. This morning cruise the Shennong Stream and disembark at Badong and transfer to a local longboat (sampan) poled by Tujia boatmen before an international lunch buffet on board.

This afternoon view Wu Gorge followed by a Chinese calligraphy demonstration. Alternatively, enjoy an optional tour to the White Emperor City (additional cost and subject to availability) before afternoon tea.

In the evening, a la carte dinner will be followed by our crew variety show.

Overnight: Sanctuary Yangzi Explorer | 5☆
Cabin: Deluxe or per your choice
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 8

WED OCT 11 • Fengdu

fengduStart your morning with traditional Chinese exercise and work up an appetite for the buffet breakfast. Afterwards there will be a shore excursion to Fengdu, where you can visit the Relocated Village, local Kindergarten or local market. After lunch join our wheelhouse tour and arts & craft presentation.

Learn to make dumplings with our chef, before our ‘Taste of China’ dinner.

Overnight: Sanctuary Yangzi Explorer | 5☆
Cabin: Deluxe or per your choice
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 9

THU OCT 12 • Chongqing Disembark Ship | Fly to Xian

chongqingArrive Chongqing and disembark the ship. We will transfer to the airport and fly to Xian.

Welcome to Xi’an!

Upon arrival, transfer to our hotel in one of the oldest, most intriguing cities in China, Xi’an. We will enjoy a special dumpling dinner this evening, a Xian specialty.

Hotel: Xian Westin Hotel | 5☆
Room: Standard
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 10

FRI OCT 13 • Xian

xian2In the morning, visit the elaborate necropolis of the Emperor Qin Shi Huangdi, guarded by his personal army of Terra Cotta Warriors. Discovered in 1974 by peasants digging a well in the Xi’an countryside, the collection (of over 8,000 clay soldiers, 130 chariots and 670 horses) is one of the most amazing artistic and archeological sites in the world.

Enjoy Lunch at a local Chinese restaurant.

After lunch, return to the city and visit Xi’an Old City Wall, built between 1374 – 1378 AD; it is the most complete defensive structure to have survived in China, as well being one of the largest, most ancient, military-complex systems in the world. From the wall, walk through ‘The Muslim Quarter’ – created in the 1st Century AD at the eastern starting point for The Silk Road, and, even today, known as “…Xi’an’s thriving spice market on Islamic Street.” See also the “Great Mosque of Xi’an” (built in 742AD) and both towers (“Bell” and “Drum”) erected during the Ming Dynasty, 1368-1644AD.

After dinner, opt for a stroll with our guide to see and feel the vibrant night-life of Xi’an’s exotic Muslim Quarter. Dinner at a local restaurant.

Hotel: Xian Westin Hotel | 5☆
Room: Standard
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 11

SAT OCT 14 • Xian | Bullet Train to Beijing

bullettrainThis morning, visit the Big Wild Goose Pagoda – one of the largest and oldest of China’s temples , it consecrates the “Indian Sanskrit Classics” brought from India to Xi’an in 652BC. An artistic and architectual masterpiece, it is a major temple listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site on“The Silk Road Network of Chang’an -Tianshan Corridor”. Dim Sum Lunch at the local De Fa Chang Restaurant.
After lunch, visit Hangyangling Museum/Mausoleum – the joint tombs of the Fourth Emperor Jing – Liu Qi and the Empress Wang Zhi, displaying the most intact and tangible evidence of burial customs of the Han Dynasty (206BC-24AD).

Continue to Xian North Railway Station for “Bullet Train” to Beijing.

In the afternoon, transfer to Xi’an North Railway Station and take the “Bullet Train” to Beijing West Railway Station, Business Class Seats. Officially opened on December 26, 2012, the Xi’an/Beijing High-speed Train offers its passengers some of China’s most spectacular landscapes, as it travels at speeds up to 250 to 300 km/h. (155 to 186 mph). Board the luxurious rail cars and relax in comfortable, reclining seats for a 4 and ½ hour scenic train ride to Beijing, the capital of the People’s Republic of China and the world’s third most populous city.

Transfer is included to Regent Beijing Hotel located near The Forbidden City in exciting Beijing. Evening is free for you to relax and dine at leisure.

Hotel: Regent Beijing Hotel | 5☆
Room: Standard
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch

Day 12

SUN OCT 15 • Beijing

beijingstadiumThis morning we begin our exploration of Chinese art, archictecture and history at The Temple of Heaven, a sequence of magnificent temples and sacrificial altars first erected in 1420AD, and the site of the semi-annual planting/harvest ‘Heaven Worship Ceremony’. After Lunch, continue to Tiananmen Square – known as the ‘Gate to Heavenly Peace’ – located adjacent to The Forbidden City.

Walk through The Forbidden City, begun in 1406AD and ultimately completed in 1420AD, arguably the most resplendent and best-preserved example of classical Chinese architecture in the world. Dinner is on your own.

Hotel: Regent Beijing Hotel ~5*
Room: Standard
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch

Day 13

MON OCT 16 • Beijing

forbiddenTravel to Mutianyu (“Grand Pass on the Precipitous Ridge”), an excellent, less congested section of the Great Wall, featuring 23 original-style watchtowers and their breath-taking views. Walk along the top of ‘The Wall’, explore the individual watchtowers and enjoy the stunning vistas of the valleys below. Lunch at the Schoolhouse Restaurant located at Mtuianyu.

In the afternoon, we visit Beijing’s numerous “hutongs” (the narrow network of lanes created by closely built quadrangular homes) and see “old” Beijing from the cozy seat of a chauffeured wooden rickshaw.

Farewell Dinner will be at the exclusive restaurant, Duck de Chine.

Hotel: Regent Beijing Hotel | 5☆
Room: Standard
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 14

TUE OCT 17 • Beijing | USA

At scheduled time, transfer to airport for your onward flight.

Meals: Breakfast


Regent Beijing Hotel | 5☆


Located a heartbeat from the legendary Forbidden City, Regent Beijing invites travelers to immerse in more than 3,000 years of history from the sanctuary of one of the world’s finest hotels. Luxury accommodations and superb amenities await you.

Xian Westin Hotel | 5☆


Personal touches and thoughtful services define The Westin Xian experience. From the warmest of welcomes to a carefree checkout, we design every aspect to create an experience that leaves you feeling better than when you arrived.

Fairmont Peace Hotel Shanghai | 5☆


Fairmont Peace Hotel in Shanghai is a ‘luxurious Art-Deco masterpiece’, brilliantly reinvented for the 21st century where old fashioned glamour sparkles with a new luster. It is the perfect place to explore Shanghai’s spectacular scenery and vibrant lifestyle.

The Deluxe Sanctuary Yangzi Explorer


The Sanctuary Yangzi Explorer introduces a new standard of cruising in China – more intimate and luxurious. With the largest cabins and suites on the river, all with private balconies, as well as the highest crew to passenger ratio on the river of 1:1, this is a Yangzi cruise unlike any other.

Carrying just 124 passengers, compared to the 300 plus accommodated on other cruise ships, the Sanctuary Yangzi Explorer offers the finest and most personalized service on the river. Onboard facilities include a la carte dining, a luxury spa, an observation deck, 24-hour room service, a two-floor theatre, library, and beauty and fitness facilities. The ship also has the most spacious and indulgent spa on board any cruise vessel on the Yangzi.

Luxury, Naturally

Awe-inspiring natural beauty, iconic World Heritage sites and cultures enhanced over centuries – these are the riches around as you sail China’s legendary waterway. The guiding philosophy of all Sanctuary is ‘Luxury, naturally’, and Sanctuary Yangzi Explorer gets you as close as possible to central China’s most captivting landscapes amid authenic charm and unrivalled comfort. This unique cruise steers you to dramatic destinations old and new, and gives glimpses of remote riverside life while you take pleasure in a relaxing journey with unrivalled amenities.

Explore Daoist temples and admire forest-cloaked peaks and feel personally introduced to time-tested traditions thanks to time on Sanctuary Yangzi Explorer – it’s a boutique hotel with five-star service floating on the Golden River.

Why the Sanctuary Yangzi Explorer ?

  • Highest crew to passenger ratio on the river of 1:1
  • Largest cabins and suites on river, all with private balconies
  • Spacious spa with variety of treatments
  • Carefully planned itineraries with variety of on board activities and site visits
  • Personalized service due to smaller number of passengers than other boats


The Sanctuary Yangzi Explorer has 38 deluxe cabins, 20 suite cabins and 4 specialty suites. All cabins boast floor-to-ceiling windows providing access to private balconies with outdoor armchairs and coffee tables. In addition to a choice of king or twin beds, connecting cabins are also available. All cabins are equipped with private bathroom, hairdryer, safety deposit box, mini bar and LCD satellite television.

View Deck Plans

Deluxe Cabins (31 square meters)

This is the largest entry level cabin of its kind on the Yangzi River, each with its own private balcony. The deluxe cabin is fully equipped with LCD Satellite TV, electronic safe, mini bar and fridge.

Suite Cabins (39 square meters)

The perfect suite for three guests traveling together, the room is still spacious after adding an extra bed.

Mandarin & Jade Suites (81 square meters)

These suites both have separate bedroom and living room areas. The spacious suites are designed with the traditional Chinese décor to enhance the experience of sailing down the Yangzi River.

Celestial & Imperial Suites (110 square meters)

These suites both have separate bedroom and living room areas. The spacious suites are the largest on the Yangtze, designed with traditional luxury Chinese décor and provide the highest levels of modern comforts whilst sailing down the River.

Rates & Facts

Rates Double Occupancy Single Occupancy
Deluxe Cabin – Main Deck $6795 $8995
Deluxe Cabin – Xiling Deck $6895 $9095
Deluxe Cabin – Wu Deck $6995 $9195
Suite – Qutan Deck $8195 Please inquire
Mandarin Suite – Qutan Deck $9095 Please inquire
Celestial Suite & Imperial Suite – Xiling Deck $9095 Please inquire

View Deck Plans

  • 8 nights Luxury & Deluxe Hotel accommodations described in the itinerary in room categories listed.
  • 4 nights aboard the deluxe Sanctuary Yangzi Explorer in a Deluxe Cabin.
  • Tours and transfers as specified including entry fees, on a private basis in air-conditioned vehicles
  • English Speaking Local Guides in each destination for all included sightseeing and transfers
  • Meals as specified in the above itinerary (include one soft drink/water)
  • Airfare for Xian | Chongqing, Yichang | Shanghai, by economy class, including all taxes and fuel charge (Air fare is subject to change by Aviation Bureau without early notice)
  • Bottled water provided on transfers and sightseeing
  • Bullet Train ticket Beijing | Xian business class seats
  • Coda Tour Manager on minimum participation
  • Pre-tour assistance and final document Portfolio
Not included

International Airfare from USA to Beijing and Shanghai to USA; Meals other than specified as included; Hotel accommodation for earlier check in and late check out; China Visa processing and issuing visa fee; Travel Insurance (recommended) or expenses of a personal nature (minibar, phone call, laundry, etc.); Tips or gratuities to guides/drivers/porters/hotel, restaurant or Coda Tour staff; Drinks or personal expenses or entrance fees for any extra sightseeing or optional activities


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