The Tour Price displayed here is for the tour only and does not include international flights. Our flight prices are very competitive, please ask for a quote when making your bookingAll departures for this trip are guaranteed.
This trip is an overland trip run in an overland truck. In addition to paying for your trip, you're require to make a separate payment to your tour leader at the start of the trip, usually in USD. Kitties are flexible and change as prices are updated. Therefore you should check the latest kitty amount on this website before you depart.
A kitty is a group fund which covers all accommodation, meals while camping (not in hotels) and activities listed as included. It's a system unique to overlanding to provide the maximum flexibility and best value on the road (you get everything at cost price!). The kitty is your money, not ours, so any amount left over is divided among the group as a refund.Close
|Trip Code||Start Date||End Date||Currency||Kitty|
|CBRK||Friday 14 Jun 2013||Wednesday 03 Jul 2013|
|CBRK||Friday 26 Jul 2013||Wednesday 14 Aug 2013|
|CBRK||Friday 09 Aug 2013||Wednesday 28 Aug 2013|
|CBRK||Friday 30 Aug 2013||Wednesday 18 Sep 2013|
|CBRK||Friday 06 Sep 2013||Wednesday 25 Sep 2013|
|CBRK||Friday 20 Sep 2013||Wednesday 09 Oct 2013|
|CBRK||Friday 18 Oct 2013||Wednesday 06 Nov 2013|
|CBRK||Friday 01 Nov 2013||Wednesday 20 Nov 2013|
|CBRK||Friday 06 Dec 2013||Wednesday 25 Dec 2013|
|CBRK||Friday 10 Jan 2014||Wednesday 29 Jan 2014|
|CBRK||Friday 24 Jan 2014||Wednesday 12 Feb 2014|
|CBRK||Friday 14 Feb 2014||Wednesday 05 Mar 2014|
|CBRK||Friday 07 Mar 2014||Wednesday 26 Mar 2014|
|CBRK||Friday 21 Mar 2014||Wednesday 09 Apr 2014|
|CBRK||Friday 04 Apr 2014||Wednesday 23 Apr 2014|
|CBRK||Friday 18 Apr 2014||Wednesday 07 May 2014|
|CBRK||Friday 02 May 2014||Wednesday 21 May 2014|
|CBRK||Friday 16 May 2014||Wednesday 04 Jun 2014|
|CBRK||Friday 23 May 2014||Wednesday 11 Jun 2014|
|CBRK||Friday 30 May 2014||Wednesday 18 Jun 2014|
|CBRK||Friday 13 Jun 2014||Wednesday 02 Jul 2014|
|CBRK||Friday 27 Jun 2014||Wednesday 16 Jul 2014|
|CBRK||Friday 11 Jul 2014||Wednesday 30 Jul 2014|
|CBRK||Friday 25 Jul 2014||Wednesday 13 Aug 2014|
|CBRK||Friday 08 Aug 2014||Wednesday 27 Aug 2014|
|CBRK||Friday 22 Aug 2014||Wednesday 10 Sep 2014|
|CBRK||Friday 05 Sep 2014||Wednesday 24 Sep 2014|
|CBRK||Friday 12 Sep 2014||Wednesday 01 Oct 2014|
|CBRK||Friday 19 Sep 2014||Wednesday 08 Oct 2014|
|CBRK||Friday 10 Oct 2014||Wednesday 29 Oct 2014|
|CBRK||Friday 24 Oct 2014||Wednesday 12 Nov 2014|
|CBRK||Friday 14 Nov 2014||Wednesday 03 Dec 2014|
|CBRK||Friday 26 Dec 2014||Wednesday 14 Jan 2015|
As one of the world's largest countries and the most populous there is so much to discover in China.
Understanding the history of China is key to understanding modern China. The people are proud of it's past, and keen to share it's heritage with the world. In a country that defies superlatives the words 'vast', 'astonishing' and 'variation' don't really seem to cover it - China really does have it all. Jungle in the south, mountains in the west, desert in the north and 21st century cities.. well... almost everywhere.
Beijiing is the hub of political and international focus. With the 2008 Olympic games providing funds to modernise huge ares of the city, it is a truly modern city. However most visitors are most struck by it's old elements from celebrated site such as the Forbidden Palace to simple, traditional hutongs.
There's a lot of China to see and most of it is changing rapidly, so what are you waiting for? Get out there are discover it for yourself.
Beijing has a long and colourful history and this rapidly modernising city is an amazing whirl of ancient sites, modern buildings, bicycles, people, shops and eateries.
Your adventure begins with a welcome meeting at 6pm on Day 1.
Snaking over the landscape for 8,851 km, the building of China's Great Wall started in the 5th century BC with the aim of protecting China's northern borders from invading Mongolian hordes.
This morning, we'll take the bullet train from Beijing to Shanhaiguan to start our journey to the eastern end of Great Wall. Arriving around noon, you'll have the afternoon to explore the Old Dragon Head (Shanhaiguan Great Wall) from different angles. Spend an hour or two on the wall, then go to the beach to view the wall rising from the sea, an angle nowhere to be found in any other part of China. You'll also have the chance to stroll around the old Shanhaiguan town and try out the local snacks on the street. Tonight, we'll stay in a local guesthouse in Shanhaiguan town.
The following day we travel to a more rural area in Shanhaiguan - Dongjiakou village, and stay with the local families there. In this quieter section of the wall, you'll have the time to take in the beauty of the wall, and talk to the locals to find out what Great Wall means to them. This section of the wall has not been renovated, and there are some sections that you'll need to walk through the forest - better to wear long sleeve clothes and pants to cover yourself in summer time. You'll need reasonable fitness and walking shoes with good support and grip for this activity (approx. 4-5 hrs). 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. Tonight we'll stay with the local families, so the standard will be very basic - shared bathroom & multi-shared accommodation. Also if the group size is large, the group will be split into different homestays.
Transfer back to Shanhaiguan and then take the D train back to Beijing and our hostel. Here, you can use the hostel's common bathroom to refresh yourself, and do a bit of last sightseeing or shopping before the overnight train to Xi'an (Approx 13 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)
As the start of the ancient trading route the Silk Road and an imperial centre for 2,000 years, Xi'an has a fascinating history and rich cultural sites to discover.
It takes around an hour to get to the Terracotta Warrior and if you choose, you can hire a local guide to tell you 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.
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 which you can climb and walk or cycle along, a unique way to experience the city. For a different view, haul yourself to the top of the Bell or Drum Towers in the centre of the city. Thanks to Xi'an's long and colourful history, the city is full of beautiful temples and museums and interesting cultural and historic sites, the most famous of which are probably the 2000 year old Terracotta warriors. Home to many Hui people, an ethnic Muslim minority, the city also has a unique Islamic flavour, particularly in the streets surrounding the Great Mosque, best explored by foot. Once you've worn yourself out with a hard days sightseeing, you can head out to the night markets to try some of the many tantalising local specialties on offer. Pao mo is a lamb broth that you break flat bread into, or try hand pulled noodles or hot pot. Later on, try your luck at karaoke, hugely popular here, or head down to the South Park to live it up with the locals as they dance, practice martial arts, play games, fly kites and watch the world go by.
Blending 21st-century architecture with old-world character, Shanghai is the vibrant pulse of new China.
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.
Get a bird's eye view of the city from the Pearl Tower's observation decks.
With karst peaks looming and the Li River gently running alongside, Yangshuo's scenery is glorious and its town a great place to relax and explore China's countryside.
Arrive in Guilin and transfer by public bus to Yangshuo (approx 1.5 hrs).
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.
Some great things you could do here in your free time include:
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.
Enjoy a relaxing boat ride along the Li River.
Get a feel for local produce with a visit to the market, then learn 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.
Bicycle hire, Yangshuo - CNY20.00
Calligraphy lesson, Yangshuo - CNY50.00
Cooking school and market tour, Yangshuo - CNY150.00
Impression light show, Yangshuo - CNY198.00
Kayaking, Yangshuo - CNY150.00
Li River cruise, Yangshuo - CNY100.00
Moon Hill, Yangshuo - CNY15.00
Tai chi or kung fu lesson, Yangshuo - CNY50.00
Watercolour painting lesson, Yangshuo - CNY50.00
Hotel (3 nts)
Known as the Dragon's Backbone and built around 500 years ago, the Longji rice terraces are remarkable, with colourful terraces covering entire mountainsides.
We travel by public bus to the Longji region via Guilin and Longsheng (approx 4.5 hrs). Pack an overnight bag for our two night stay here as we leave our main luggage at the train station to pick up again on our return.
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.
Hike through the terraces to visit local hilltribe communities and learn about village life. Expect to walk around 5 hours on our second day here although actual trekking times will depend on the location of our accommodation and the fitness of the group.
It can be tough going for some, with many uphill stretches and some very slippery paths, so you'll need footwear with good grip and plenty of stamina. If you are especially active, each village has plenty of paths to stunning viewpoints for you to explore independently in the morning or early evening.
In Longji, we stay in local guesthouses.
Bus back to Guilin (approx 3 hrs), where you may have some free time to explore.
Take an overnight hard sleeper train to Shenzhen - gateway to Hong Kong (approx 13 hrs).
Rice terraces hike
Guesthouse (2 nts), Overnight sleeper train (1 nt)
A British colony until 1997, Hong Kong's cityscape is spectacular and its modern fast-paced life is only minutes from picturesque islands and beaches.
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. You'll need to carry your bags 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.
Hong Kong is a wonderful city to explore. Some things you might want to experience here include:
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.
There are no activities planned for the final day and you are able to depart our accommodation at any time. Please check the 'Finishing Point Hotel' section for checkout times and luggage storage possibilities.
Culture Museum, Hong Kong - HKD10.00
Disneyland, Hong Kong - HKD399.00
History Museum, Hong Kong - HKD10.00
Light show, Hong Kong - Free
Ngong Ping 360 cable car round trip, Hong Kong - HKD125.00
Ocean Park, Hong Kong - HKD185.00
Peak tram, Hong Kong - HKD30.00
Science Museum, Hong Kong - HKD25.00
Space Museum, Hong Kong - HKD10.00
Star Ferry, Hong Kong - HKD15.00
Victoria Peak, Hong Kong - HKD30.00
Hotel (1 nt)
Occasionally our itineraries are updated during the year to incorporate improvements stemming from past travellers' comments and our own research. Our brochure is usually released in November each year. The information given in this itinerary may be slightly different to that in the brochure. It's very important that you print and review a final copy of your Trip Notes a couple of days prior to travel, in case there have been changes that affect your plans. For the latest updated Trip Notes please visit our website: www.imaginative-traveller.com
Please note that while we operate successful trips in this region throughout the year, some changes may occur in our itineraries due to inclement weather and common seasonal changes to timetables and transport routes. This can happen with little notice so please be prepared for modifications to the route.
You will be expected to carry your own luggage, including moving about about busy public transport hubs, up stairs and escalators and on and off buses and trains. Although you won't be required to walk long distances with your luggage, you are expected to be able to walk and handle your own luggage for up to 30 minutes. Good general fitness and mobility plays a big part in making your trip more enjoyable In some locations it may be possible to hire porters. Please ask your trip leader for help to arrange this if possible but be prepared to manage your own luggage.
You need to be able to walk for up to 6 hours a day when trekking through the Longji rice terraces. The terraces are hilly and you need only to carry your day pack during the trek. Your big pack or main luggage will stay in storage at the hotel.
Included activities are listed in the day-to-day itinerary, all other activities are optional and at your own expense. If you choose not to participate in the included activities on this itinerary, the cost will not be refunded.
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 for entrance only and don't include transport costs to and from the sites or local guides unless indicated. It may not be possible to do all the activities listed in the time available at each destination. Optional activities aren't necessarily endorsed or recommended by Imaginative Traveller nor included in price of this trip. If you do any optional activities, you do so at your own risk and it must be clearly understood that your participation is your own decision and doesn't form part of your contract with Imaginative Traveller.
The official currency in China is the yuan or renminbi (CNY). 1 renminbi (yuan) = 10 jiao (mao).
We strongly advise against bringing travellers cheques as in China they can be extremely difficult or impossible to change.
ATMs are widespread, so the easiest way to access cash on your trip is to bring a credit card. Please check with your bank about overseas withdrawal fees before you depart. Some banks will allow a cash advance against a major credit card which will incur a service charge of 5% or more.
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).
The exchange rate is pegged to the USD at 7.8:1. ATMs, currency exchange and facilities to change travellers' cheques are widely available in Hong Kong.
Every traveller is different and therefore spending money requirements will vary. Some travellers may drink more than others while other travellers like to purchase more souvenirs than most. Please consider your own spending habits when it comes to allowing for drinks, shopping, participating in optional activities, and tipping. Please also remember the following specific recommendations when planning your trip.
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 Imaginative Traveller 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 in China is not customary, but in the travel industry it is. Many guides and drivers would usually supplement their income by taking tourists to shops and restaurants from which they receive commission. Imaginative Traveller does not encourage this practice as we believe it can be detrimental to our travellers' experience. Instead we try to ensure we pay our drivers, guides and leaders fairly for their services. Tips are still very much appreciated for those situations in which you believe you have received excellent service.
Please don't tip with coins, notes of or less that CNY1, or dirty and ripped notes. This is regarded culturally as an insult.
The following amounts are based on local considerations and feedback from our past travellers:
Restaurants: Tipping is not common practice at restaurants in China or Tibet.
Local guides: Throughout your trip you may at times have a local guide in addition to your leader. We suggest CNY10-15 per person per day for local guides with the amount adjusted accordingly for guides who are with you for less than a full day.
Porters: In some hotels a porter may offer to carry your bag to your room. We suggest CNY5 per bag for porters.
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 that you tip only those more involved with the group (for example those that help you with your bags etc). CNY5-10 per person per day is generally appropriate, with the amount adjusted accordingly for drivers who are with you for less than a full day.
Your Group Leader: You may also consider tipping your leader for outstanding service throughout your trip. The amount is entirely a personal preference; however as a guideline US$2-4 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 isn't compulsory and should only be given when you receive excellent service.
All departure taxes should be included in your international flight ticket.
Please note that China's national holidays are the peak travel season for Chinese nationals. During this time, literally the whole country is on the move - that's over a billion people. Although these are fascinating and exciting times to travel in China, please be aware your group will almost definitely experience transport delays and massive crowds at tourist attractions and train stations. It's common for there to be difficulties in securing train or flight tickets at our preferred times, hotels become overbooked, traffic chaotic and changes to the itinerary are often necessary as a result. If clockwork organisation is important to you we advise you book outside of the weeks of Chinese New Year (January 01st - 10th of February), the first week of May and the first week of October. If you decide to travel during this period please come with an open mind and be prepared for changes on the ground.
Maximum of 16 travellers per group.
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.
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.
Hostel (7 nts), Hotel (5 nts), Guesthouse (2 nts), Overnight sleeper train (4 nts), Homestay (1 nt)
The style of accommodation indicated in the day-to-day itinerary is a guideline. On rare occasions, alternative arrangements may need to be made due to the lack of availability of rooms in our usual accommodation. A similar standard of accommodation will be used in these instances.
Accommodation on this trip is on a twin/multishare basis. Please note there may be times when you share a room with passengers travelling on different Imaginative Traveller trips than your own. Throughout the trip we request that our hotels prepare rooms in time for our arrival, especially if we're arriving prior to normal check-in time. However this isn't always possible which means we won't be able to check-in immediately on arrival at some hotels. Instead, we can store our luggage and explore our new destination.
If you've purchased pre-trip or post-trip accommodation (if available), you may be required to change rooms from your trip accommodation for these extra nights.
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 berths (6 to a compartment), sheets, a blanket and hot water available. We recommend bringing your own sleeping sheet as the quality/cleanliness of sheets may not be what you are used to. Most trains have a dining carriage where meals or snacks are available. While we always try 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. While railway services are rapidly being modernised in China, some train journeys in particular between less visited destinations may use older rolling stock and the carriages of a more basic standard.
Some travellers have reported that hotels/accommodation in this region tend to have harder bed mattresses than those they are used to at home. Passengers that require a soft bed should consider bringing an inflatable camping mattress or sleeping mat.
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 ventilated well before occupation in some cases this is not possible.
While travelling with us you'll experience the vast array of wonderful food available in the world. Your group leader will be able to suggest restaurants to try during your trip. On our camping trips we often cook the region's specialities so you don't miss out. To give you the maximum flexibility in deciding where, what and with whom to eat, generally not all meals are included in the trip price. This also gives you more budgeting flexibility. As a rule our groups tend to eat together to enable you to taste a larger variety of dishes and enjoy each other's company. There's no obligation to do this though.
No meals included
Budget for meals not included: USD 250.00
Train, Private Bus, Bus, Metro, Public bus, Overnight sleeper train
All 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. We endeavour 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. 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.
Beijing City Central Youth Hotel is located next to the famous Beijing railway station inside Beijing's second ring road, just a 1 minute walk from the Beijing railway station subway station on the line 2. This optimum location allows you to access many of Beijing's main tourist attractions cheaply and conveniently. Rooms are twin share with private bathrooms.
Beijing Capital International Airport is located northeast of Beijing 25 km from the centre of the city. One if 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.
Beijing Airport Express trains leave from both terminal 2 and 3. Trains operate from 06:20 until 22:50. Alight at Dongzhimen Station and our hotel is a short taxi ride away (approx. 10 minutes and CNY10).
You can take airport bus (CNY16) route 2 (alight at Dongzhimen) or route 3 (alight at Beijing Railway Station) and then it is a short taxi ride to our joining point hotel (approx 10 minutes, CNY15).
By subway, take the airport express train (CNY25) to Dongzhimen station. From Dongzhimen transfer to metro line 2 and go one station to Beijing railway station. Use exit A and you will see a four story building with English Name " Beijing City Central Youth Hotel".
Metered taxis are available outside the airport terminal building. The taxi ride from the airport to our starting point hotels takes approximately 45 minutes and should cost around CNY80-100 (plus CNY10 for the airport expressway toll). Show the taxi driver the name and address of the hotel in Chinese characters, as shown below. Please AVOID taxi touts who tell you that they have a metered taxi parked outside the airport.
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 Intrepid.
If you have pre-purchased an arrival transfer our local operator Ms. Qi (Ms. Chee) will have sent a driver to the airport who will be holding a sign with the Intrepid logo and your name on it. If you have arrived at Terminal 2 of Beijing airport, please meet your driver at entrance/exit #7 after you go through the baggage claim area. 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 at door #7 and ask them to call Ms.Qi on her mobile. If you have arrived at Terminal 3 of Beijing Airport, 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.If you have any problems finding the driver go to the information desk at the right side of Exit B, and ask them to call Ms. Qi on her mobile (+86) 13671299816
Check-in time is 12 midday.
We don't expect any problems (and nor should you) but if for any reason you are unable to commence your group trip as scheduled, please contact your starting point hotel, requesting that you speak to or leave a message for your group leader.
If you have pre-booked an airport transfer (where available) and have not made contact with our representative within 30 minutes of clearing customs and immigration, we recommend that you make your own way to the starting point hotel, following the Joining Instructions in these Trip Notes. Should this occur, please apply to your travel agent for a refund of the transfer cost on your return.
No refund is available on missed transfers or portions of your trip owing to a different flight arrival or delayed flight arrival. Any additional cost incurred in order to meet up with your group is at your own expense.
No.92-94 Woo Sung Street, Jordan, Kowloon
Phone: 852 2332 2020
Located in Jordan on the Kowloon side of Hong Kong, the Goodrich hotel is just minutes away from the famous Temple Street market and Nathan Road. Shopping malls, MTR stations, fine restaurants and the most happening night-spots are also within walking distance.
Hong Kong International airport (or Chek Lap Kok airport) is situated on Lantau Island, 36km from the centre of Kowloon peninsula. There are several different and convenient ways to get from the city to the airport. Public transport in Hong Kong is very easy to use and all signs and directions are written in English.
The easiest way to get to Hong Kong International airport is to take the Airport Express train (operates from 06:15 until 01:00). Take a short taxi ride from our hotel to Kowloon MTR/Airport Express station and then hop on the Airport Express train (HK$90, discounts are available for groups, 25 minutes) to the airport.
Alternatively, you could take the MTR to Hong Kong station and board the Airport Express from there (HK$100). At both Kowloon and Hong Kong Airport Express stations you can check into your flight and check your luggage in (Please note: not all airlines and flights are available for station check-in).
A taxi from our hotel to Hong Kong International airport will cost you approx. HK$350.
A prebooked departure transfer from our hotel to the airport may be available depending on date of travel and if arranged at the time of booking. Transfers cannot be arranged during the trip. Please advise your flight details at least 14 days prior to your trips start date. If you plan to stay longer, this departure transfer can only be offered in conjunction with post-tour accommodation booked through Imaginative Traveller.
Check out time from the hotel is at 12 noon. If you are departing later, you can arrange luggage storage at the hotel.
In the case of a genuine crisis or emergency, our Beijing Office can be reached on Tel: +861064067328.
We also have a dedicated 24 hour telephone number which should only be used once you have left the UK and in the event of a real emergency. Should you need to call the number, we will do what we can to help but please bear in mind that real progress or action may not be possible until normal office hours.
If your flight is delayed or cancelled, please let us know and then make your way to the joining hotel as instructed in these trip notes. If you cannot get through leave a message and a contact number as these will be regularly checked.
Emergency Number: +44 (0) 7985106564
Please also make sure you have access to an additional US$400, 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.
Visas are the responsibility of the individual traveller. The visa requirements for your trip vary depending on where you are from and where you are going. As a general rule most countries expect that you will have at least 6 months' validity on your passport. On arrival visitors may be asked to present return tickets and evidence of means to cover your intended stay.
We keep the following information up to date as much as possible, but rules do change - it's important that you check for yourself. Residents from other countries must consult the relevant embassies or your travel agent.
Australia: Yes - in advance
Belgium: Yes - in advance
Canada: Yes - in advance
Germany: Yes - in advance
Ireland: Yes - in advance
Netherlands: Yes - in advance
New Zealand: Yes - in advance
South Africa: Yes - in advance
Switzerland: Yes - in advance
United Kingdom: Yes - in advance
USA: Yes - in advance
When filling out the visa application form you will be asked to complete a section "company or person to visit in China" or "Residence(s) and phone number(s) during your stay in China" (in a time sequence). It's only necessary to enter one hotel in China, and use the hotel details specified in the start, continuing or finishing point hotel information listed in the Trip Notes. You require a single entry visa to complete this trip.
If submitting your visa form in person with your local consulate, please check beforehand whether you need to make an appointment.
Australia: No - Not required
Belgium: No - Not required
Canada: No - Not required
Germany: No - Not required
Ireland: No - Not required
Netherlands: No - Not required
New Zealand: No - Not required
South Africa: No - Not required
Switzerland: No - Not required
United Kingdom: No - Not required
USA: No - Not required
Please note that Hong Kong isn't considered part of China for visa purposes.
Your visa application form may require you to state the dates on which you enter and exit that country. Please note we suggest you list your date of entry a few days before, and date of exit a few days after your intended dates in case you encounter any delays or problems en route. The following are the international/administrative border crossings for this trip:
Day 19 - Exit China at Shenzhen and enter Hong Kong at Lo Wu
To help calculate the exact dates of these crossings we have found the following website to be very useful - http://www.timeanddate.com/
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 if you may speak to their direct manager.
What you need to bring will vary according to the trip style you have chosen, the countries you are visiting and when you are travelling. Generally speaking you should pack as lightly as possible. On the vast majority of our trips you are expected to carry your own luggage and although you won't be required to walk long distances with your luggage (max 30 minutes), we recommend keeping the weight under 10kg / 22lb.
Most travellers carry their luggage in a backpack, although an overnight bag with a shoulder strap would suffice if you travel lightly. Smaller bags or backpacks with wheels are convenient although we recommend your bag has carry straps. You'll also need a day pack/bag to carry water and a camera etc for day trips.
It's important that your bags can be locked, as on local transport it may be necessary to store your luggage separately (and unattended) from the group. The smaller your bag the better for you and other passengers, for when it comes to travelling on local buses and trains it's often only the smaller bags that will fit into the storage areas. If your bag does not fit in these areas then often the only place to put it is on your bed or seat. To ensure maximum comfort, try to pack small and light.
Where Imaginative Traveller covers the cost of luggage storage for included day trips, we allow for one bag/backpack only, so it's advisable that you travel lightly and keep luggage to a limit of one item (plus your day pack). Extra luggage storage will be at your own expense.
During our trip there will be many opportunities for you to meet and talk with locals. One way to start any conversation is with pictures. We recommend that you bring some photos / postcards of your family, home, city or country where you live, animals peculiar to your country etc.
Consider bringing your own water bottle to refill along the way. The sale of bottled water contributes to an enormous environmental problem around the world. In addition to the water in bottles, the production of a 1 litre plastic bottle takes 2 litres of water and 200ml of oil. A large proportion ends up in limited landfill or discarded in waterways and natural environments. Although it can be difficult to avoid bottled water when travelling, please consider water purification techniques such as iodine or micropur and use the water dispensers which are provided at some of our accommodation.
In China, clean and safe drinking water is widely available for free in hotels, restaurants and bus and train stations.
All 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, Imaginative Traveller 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.
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.
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 group 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 Imaginative Traveller itinerary, and Imaginative Traveller 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 group leader has the authority to amend or cancel any part of the trip itinerary if it's deemed necessary due to safety concerns.
Your leader will conduct a brief safety discussion before our trekking activity.
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 group 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.
Responsible Travel is twofold. It’s about taking people to the places they want to go in a safe and responsible manner but also about respecting and maintaining the natural and often delicate balance of the destination. Economic gain from tourism is often fundamental to a country, but should never be at the expense of its culture or the environment.
Before you depart try to spend some time familiarising yourself with the destination you will be travelling to – their culture and customs. The country dossiers on our website offer detailed information about all the regions we visit. They also include some useful phrases in the local language for you to use on your trip! A few words of the local language can open up many more opportunities for you to interact with the people you will meet.
Although it is tempting to give out pens, sweets and money to people begging, and particularly tempting to give to children, we feel that this encourages a begging mentality and has a long-term negative impact on communities. If someone begging earns more than someone in the same community who works this can discourage local employment. If children regularly bring home money it may discourage their parents from sending them to school.
Always ask permission to photograph local people and respect their decision if they would prefer not to have their picture taken.
Respect local dress codes, especially at religious sites. Our tour leaders are always on hand to give you advice about this. When packing be aware that 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 for men and women.
In many of the countries we visit you might see examples of animal cruelty (for example dancing bears, performing monkeys and snake charmers). Please do not take photographs of this or offer money as it encourages the activity.
Respect the environment you are in. It sounds obvious but do not throw litter, take it with you or use rubbish bins! You may see locals throwing rubbish on the street but do not follow their example!
When shopping in countries where haggling is the norm – enjoy it and only pay what you feel is a fair price for the goods you are purchasing. However, remember that the shopkeeper does have to make a living so do stop once you have reached a price you are happy with. Bargaining should be fun but always remember that a small amount can mean much more to the vendor than to you.
Endeavour to take home souvenirs made locally; the money you spend can be very important to the local communities. However, do use your common sense and don’t buy anything that you think might be made out of endangered animals or plants.
To help keep as much money as possible in the host country - try to eat in locally owned restaurants and order local drinks and produce rather than international brands.
In hotels do be conscious of how much water you are using. Many of the areas we visit regularly have shortages; try not to have hour long showers! Don’t leave lights, air conditioners or fans on when you leave the room – you wouldn’t at home!
Respect the environment you are in, especially when in national parks or reserves. Pay attention to rules about keeping on paths, keeping a distance from animals and not removing any of the natural habitat.
Relax and immerse yourself in the differences of the culture you are in – you’ll be back home in the familiar soon enough (and wishing you were still on holiday!). These cultural differences are part of what makes your experience special.
If you would like to offset the carbon dioxide that will be produced on your flights you can do this on our website (on our Responsible travel page). We work with climatecare, who will reduce the equivalent amount of carbon dioxide that you produce in another part of the World through their emission reduction projects. These projects are low carbon efficient technologies in developing countries and not only serve to reduce emissions but also help to spread the adoption of low carbon technologies and improve the quality of life for local communities. Details of climatecare’s projects can be found on their website.
Please do let us know if you have any comments about responsible travel at email@example.com
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 Imaginative Traveller travellers. Imaginative Traveller'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.
Carbon Offset C02-e 1589.00 kgs per pax.
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