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Trip details

16 Days China Nature Wonders

16 Days China Nature Wonders

Date: September 7th-22nd

Price: Upon Request

Trip Focus: Nature Wonders+ Old & Modern China + Giant Panda

Status: Open to Booking

Route: Shanghai-Suzhou-Wuzhen-Huangshan-Changsha-Zhangjiajie-Xi'an-Chengdu-Jiuzhai-Huanglong-Chengdu

Trip Code: N001


China is a vast country that is blessed with a variety of breathtaking ecosystems, unique animals, and bizarre geographic features. In this otherworldly place, bustling metropolises border timeless temples in a harmonious marriage of old and new. The visage of towering mountain ranges reflects in the enchanting waters of crystalline lakes. This land's heritage is tied so closely to its stunning natural splendor, that the two are almost inseparable. With this exciting tour opportunity with AbsolutePanda, our team is prepared to show you the full range of China's natural beauty over sixteen exciting days of exploration. 


. See some of China's most beautiful natural wonders such as Huangshan Mountain, Zhangjiajie National Forest, Jiuzhai Valley (Many of which are listed as world heritage sites).

. Countless photo opportunities for themes such as natural settings, cultural subject matter, as well as urban and rural photography.

. Guided by professional Photography and naturalist guides from the AbsolutePanda team.

. Visit some of the top man-made Chinese Traditional gardens such as the famous Suzhou Garden.

. Visit the ancient Chinese capital of Xi'an; explore the tomb of the Terracotta Warriors and Xi'an's Muslim Street.

. Come face to face with the Giant Pandas at the Chengdu Panda Base.

Introduction to This Trip's Destinations:

Shanghai is China's largest metropolis and features a unique international charm that wins over many foreigners who come to China. Shanghai's unmistakable cityscape combines state-of-the-art skyscrapers with cozy traditional architecture to create a profound blend of old and new. These older parts of Shanghai showcase the elements of China that attract guests from around the world - mouthwatering food in City God Temple, elegant craftsmanship in Yuyuan Market, interesting local life in its Nongtangs, and the image of an old and new China along the alleyways of The Bund. 
Classical Gardens of Suzhou
The Classical Gardens of Suzhou are a highlight for any traveler coming to the Suzhou region, Jiangsu province, China. As a UNESCO World Heritage site, these gardens are a must-see destination on our tour of Chinese natural heritage. Spanning a period of almost one thousand years, from the Northern Song to the late Qing dynasties (11th-19th century), these gardens were constructed by Chinese scholars and standardized many of the key features of classical Chinese garden design such as constructed landscapes that mimic natural scenery of rocks, hills and rivers with strategically located pavilions and pagodas.

Wuzhen Water Town
Nicknamed the "Venice of the East", Wuzhen is considered the most successful ancient town in China. Wuzhen has something to offer for any tourist. You can find inner peace in the tranquil atmosphere of Wuzhen's old water channels or enjoy the city's exciting night life.
Huang Mountain(Yellow Mountain)
The Yellow Mountains are one of the most famous and beautiful mountainous ranges in China and have been listed as a UNESCO world heritage site since 1990.. The Yellow Mountains' classic attractions are known as its "Four Natural Wonders": the strangely-shaped pines, oddly-shapedd rocks, seas of cloud, and hot springs.

As the saying goes, "Go to Jiuzhai Valley to see the water, to Zhangjiajie to see the mountains."In the core of Zhangjiajie National Park, there are three thousand stone peaks seating in different styles with eight hundred streams trickling down the rocks. The hoodoo sandstone landform and the magnificent karst landscape make it be like a Chinese landscape painting and a "miniature wonderland, amplified bonsai." These landforms have become so influential for their breathtaking appearance that director James Cameron used them as inspiration for the alien world he created in his famous film, "Avatar".

Xi 'an, one of the earliest world-class cities to visit. You can see the ruins of the ancient Han-dynasty capital of Chang 'an, the ruins of Tang-dynasty palace building, and the city walls that have been preserved since the Ming dynasty. The history and culture of Xi 'an is an epitome of the long history and culture of the Chinese nation. 

Jiuzhai Valley
Listed as a UNESCO World Natural Heritage, the valleys of Jiuzhai are famous for its trademark "Six Wonders," including green lakes, multi-layer waterfalls, colorful forests, snow-capped peaks, Tibetan culture, and blue ice. Water is the soul of Jiuzhai Valley, and Haizi (lake) in Jiuzhaigou is by far the most notable. The lakes here are crystal clear all year round, and with the changing seasons, the color of the water shifts. In total, Jiuzhai valley has more than one hundred pristine lakes connected by gorgeous towering waterfalls.

Huanglong scenic area
Huanglong scenic area is located in Songpan County, part of the Aba Tibetan and Qiang autonomous prefecture in Sichuan province. Only 100 kilometers away from Jiuzhaigou, this area sits at the relatively low elevation of 2000 meters above sea level. Huanglong is famous for its "four wonders," the colorful pool, snow mountain, canyon, and forest. In 1992, it was listed on the world's natural heritage list.

Few cities in the world can enjoy such unique resources as Chengdu. Located in the western part of the rich Sichuan Basin and to the east of the Qinghai-Tibet Plateau, the vertical elevation difference is close to 5,000m, creating a unique landscape that allows many kinds of natural ecosystems, flora, and fauna to flourish. Most notably, Chengdu is famed for being the "Panda city" and hosts the largest captive panda population in its research and breeding centers. Famous Emei mountain, Leshan Giant Buddha, Qingcheng Mountain, Dujiangyan Irrigation System, and many other cultural and natural heritage sites are just nearby.


Dates and Prices

Upon Request



Day 1. Arrive in Shanghai,

Shanghai is one of China's largest cities and represents the pinnacle of Chinese modernity while showcasing elements of its rich past. After checking into your hotel, you have the choice of either resting or taking a leisurely walk around to explore the nearby beautiful streets. In the evening, Absolutepanda will host a welcome dinner in an authentic Shanghai-style restaurant near our hotel. 
Overnight Shanghai   Meals: D

Day 2. Morning-Yu Garden, City God Temple. Afternoon and evening -Skyscrapers in Pudong, night walk on the Bund
This morning we visit Shanghai's renowned Yu Garden and the City God Temple. As the best representative of Shanghai Gardens, Yu Garden is once a private property of a high-rank officer from the Ming Dynasty(1368―1644). It has exquisite Chinese traditional designs to aim to epitomize integrity and modesty which are the pursuits of any scholar-official. The City God Temple is beside the Yu Garden. This place is perfect for finding local Shanghai-style snacks and for experiencing traditional celebrations during festivals. This afternoon we'll go to Pudong, one of the fastest-growing parts of China. We will take one of the fastest elevators to ascend the current record holder for the tallest building in China- the Shanghai Tower(632m). The whole Bund is on the other side of the river. You can view the most scenic parts of old and new Shangha. After dinner, we take a night stroll on the Bund. It is here that the legend of this whole modern city began.
                                                                         Overnight: Shanghai  Meals:BLD

Day 3. High-speed train to Suzhou, visit Zhuozheng Garden and Liu Garden before drive to Wuzhen
This morning, we will ride the advanced and comfortable high-speed train system to Suzhou, a city with a 2500-year history that is renowned for its culture and wealth. The beautiful gardens in Suzhou are said to be the best in China. Among these gardens, Zhuozheng Garden and Liu Garden are the most famous in the city. Zhuozheng Garden is the most extensive garden and Liu Garden is the most unique one. Afternoon, we head to an ancient water town, Wuzhen. Tonight we will have a boat trip to enjoy the romantic and nostalgic night scene of this old town.
                                                     Overnight: Wuzhen  Meals:BLD

Day4. Morning-Wuzhen Afternoon Jiaxing(Tongxiang Station)-Huangshan(High-speed total travel time around 4 hrs ) 
Early this morning, we will head to the most notable natural sites in Wuzhen, the West Scenic Zone. This area consists of 12 small islands connected by more than 70 small Bridges. We will visit the grass and wood dyeing house which makes blue printed cloth with bluegrass as raw material, and showcases a unique colorful baking process. It is an excellent setting for our group to take photos. Following this visit, we will experience the morning water market in Wuzhen. Every morning, boats carry fresh vegetables and domestic animals to the river junction to be sold. We will have a great chance to interact with the local vendors there. Later this afternoon, we will travel for 4 hours to reach our next destination in the Huang Mountains range, the Yellow Mountain.
Overnight: Nearby Huang Mountain  Meals: BLD

Day 5. Explore Huangshan Mountain
We will spend the day on the classical route for climbers, alternating between walking and riding cable cars. The high vantage on the mountainside will provide especially scenic views of Huangshan, its strange-shaped pine tree forests, odd rocks, the sea of clouds and hot springs. 
Overnight: Nearby Huangshan Mountain  Meals:BLD
Day 6. High-speed ride train to Changsha(5 hrs) tour of local food vendors in the city.
Today we can take a final breath of the fresh air in Huang Mountain before depart to the train station. After five hours, we will reach Changsha city, the provincial capital of Hunan, and the childhood home of Chairman Mao. We will go to a local street that is famous among locals for its abundance of small restaurants with authentic local snacks. Here we can watch how vendors prepare the area's delicacies.

Overnight: Changsha Meals: BLD

Day 7. High-Speed train to Zhangjiajie (4hrs).
Before boarding the train to Zhangjiajie, we can spend some time visiting the local buildings and vendors in Changsha that we missed the day before. The train route from Changsha to Zhangjiajie is newly built and makes the journey between the two cities much more convenient. Once we have finished our transit across Hunan, we will set foot on one of the most famous geographical landmarks in Asia, Zhangjiajie. This illustrious world heritage site features 243 towering stone peaks that rise above blankets of mist and cloud as well as at least 3,000 pinnacles and spires. This park has received fame across the globe for its illusion of floating rocks and mountains.
Overnight: Zhangjiajie  Meals:BLD
Day 8. Zhangjiajie.
To begin our day in Zhangjiajie, we will venture to the Zhangjiajie National Forest Park. It was these mountains and peaks that inspired the alien world of Pandora in the critically acclaimed sci-fi film, Avatar. The natural features of this park will prove to be one of the most notable highlights of the trip. 
Overnight: Zhangjiajie Meals:BLD
Day 9, Zhangjiajie and Evening flight to Xi'an
For our second day in Zhangjiajie, we will visit some of the park's other scenic areas, including Tianmen Mountain and the Zhangjiajie Grand Canyon Glass Bridge. In the evening, we will depart from the park and board a plane to the ancient imperial city of China, Xi'an.
Overnight: Xi'an Meals: BLD

Day 10 Xi'an (Terracotta Warrior museum, City wall, Muslim Quarter).
Departing from our hotel in Xi'an in the morning, we will visit the city's most famous destination, the Terracotta Warriors. Discovered in the 1970s in the suburbs outside the city, the Terracotta Warriors museum is one of the most remarkable archaeological discoveries in human history. Consisting of 8,000 clay soldiers, 100 chariots, and 600 horses, the army was built to guard the massive mausoleum complex of Qin Shihuang (259–210 B.C.), the first emperor for a great unified China. After lunch, we head back to the city and stop at the old city wall of Xi'an, which is one of the best-preserved in China. After the wall, The last stop will be the Muslim Quarter of Xi'an. This ethnic quarter features traditional Muslim-style cooking prepared by the descended of ancient silk road traders who came to China centuries ago.
Overnight: Xi'an Meals:BLD
Day11 High-speed train to Chengdu(4h). Afternoon Chengdu City tour.
This morning, we take the newly constructed Xi'an-Chengdu high-speed train to the capital of Sichuan province, Chengdu. After a break in the city, we will go to the heart of Chengdu, the People's Park, and Kuanzhai Alley. People's Park is an ideal place to enjoy a stroll while observing local people singing, dancing, and playing. Kuanzhai Alley is a traditional-style shopping street, complete with souvenir shops, specialty restaurants, and bars. 
Overnight: Chengdu  Meals:BLD

Day12 Chengdu Panda Base- fly to Jiuzhai Valley.
Chengdu is widely known as the hometown of the giant panda, and the Chengdu Panda Base is the perfect place to see why! As the panda base with the largest captive population of pandas in the world, the Chengdu Panda base attracts tourists and wildlife enthusiasts from around the globe. Conveniently located a short drive away from downtown, we will venture to the base early to beat the crowds. During your visit, you will see pandas ranging from young cubs to lumbering adults, as well as the elusive and adorable red panda. After an authentic Sichuan Cuisine and a good rest, we will fly to Jiuzhai Valley in the afternoon.
Overnight: Jiuzhai  Meals: BLD

Day 13 Jiuzhai Valley.
Known as the "Fairyland on earth," Jiuzhai Valley offers guests a once-in-a-lifetime experience for its mirror-like lakes, magnificent waterfalls, snow peaks, immense forests, and local Tibetan culture. We will spend the whole day in the park's beautiful valleys to explore the entirety of this heavenly-like place. After our tour, we will head to Huanglong and have a good rest in our local accommodation.
Overnight: Huanglong Meals: BLD
Day 14 Jiuzhai- Huanglong.
Huanglong is famous for its "four wonders," including the colorful pools of water, snow-capped mountains, canyons, and forests. After enjoying the picturesque landscape this park has to offer, our group will board the chartered bus and begin our return Chengdu. Along the way, we will stop and spend the night in Wenchuan, the epicenter of the catastrophic 2008 earthquake.
Overnight: Wenchuan County  Meals: BLD

Day 15. Wenchuan - Wolong Panda Sanctuary - Chengdu.
Along the way back to Chengdu, we will pass through the culturally Tibetan region of Aba and into the center of the panda's natural habitat in Wolong. What is more, we will have a chance to see the pandas again! In Wolong, we can stop in the Wolong Panda sanctuary, a facility renowned for it's picturesque natural backdrop. Due to its special location, this base has the best natural temperature for the pandas and is an excellent place for people who want to see active panda cubs with smaller crowds. After our tour of the base is complete, we will finish our drive back to Chengdu.
Overnight: Chengdu Meals: BLD
Day16. Chengdu see-off.
After breakfast in our hotel accommodation in the city, our team will escort you to the Shuangliu international airport in Chengdu for you to either leave China or continue your journeys elsewhere. This will conclude the scheduled tour services from AbsolutePanda.

*Interested in extending your trip? You can choose to add this optional 3-day extension on your trip!
Guilin-Yangshuo 3-Day Extension Tour
To many travelers world-wide, the landscape of Guilin is the most vivid expression of Oriental charm that makes it the most popular destination for overseas tourists. With textbook examples of iconic Oriental landscapes. The beautiful views in Guilin are unlike any other place in the world.
Simple Itinerary
Day1 Chengdu fly to Guilin-Yangshuo
Day2 Yangshuo-Guilin
Day3 Guilin-airport see-off
For more information, please check out website.


Map of 16 Days China Nature Wonders



Accomodations of this Tour


1. Will we see wild pandas on this tour?
During this trip, we plan to visit two of Sichuan's panda centers (in Chengdu and Wolong.) Our team does offer wildlife safaris in the panda's natural habitat; however, wild pandas are incredibly difficult to spot.

2. Was Avatar filmed in Zhangjiajie?
James Cameron used the stunning panoramas of Zhangjiajie in some of the footage for the Avatar film. We will visit the place where these shots were taken.

3. Can you tell me more about the Muslim quarter in Xi'an?
The Muslim quarter is a decorated street filled with food vendors and souvenir shops located near the city center of Xi'an. The style of food here all comes from the Hui Muslim ethnic group that is descended from the silk road traders that came to China long ago. In addition, this attraction is located quite close to the city's famous bell tower, which is ideal for photos.

4. Is the terracotta warrior museum located in the city of Xi'an?
The terracotta warriors are not located within the city limits of Xi'an and will require a drive to reach. However, Xi'an is the ideal staging point, and our team intends to leave early in the morning to take you from the hotel in Xi'an to the warriors.
5. Can you describe the layout of the terracotta warriors museum?
The terracotta warrior museum is not your typical museum layout. The facility features three large rooms with massive excavation pits dug into the ground. We will prioritize visiting all three rooms so your group enjoys a full experience. Additionally, there are some displays located in the rooms and education material for you to learn more.

6. Can you tell me more about the high-speed bullet trains?
China has developed one of the world's most efficient railway systems in the world. These state of the art trains rival air travel in comfort, price and efficiency. What is more, they provide our guests with the opportunity to watch the landscape rapidly shift from the vantage of a train window.

7. Which Chinese provinces will we visit during this tour?
During this tour, we will pass through the Chinese municipality of Shanghai, as well as Jiangsu, Anhui, Hunan, Shanxi, and Sichuan province.
8. What makes the water in Jiuzhai Valley and Huanglong so colorful?
The water features of these parks have been formed by calcite and travertine deposits. These properties give the waters their otherworldly shapes and coloration.
9. Will we have the opportunity to pet or take photos with the pandas?
To better protect the welfare of the animals in Sichuan's panda bases, the practice of tourists taking photos with pandas has been prohibited. For guests who are interested in having a close encounter with a panda, check out our panda volunteer itineraries under "Panda tours" on the AbsolutePanda website.


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