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Great Wall, Forbidden City-Tianjin Xingang-5-day Tour

 



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Great Wall, Temple of Heaven, Forbidden City, Summer Palace in Beijing to Tianjin Port Xingang Cruise: 5 Day Package

 

 

 

[TJPORT 15]

 

 

Looking for a reliable and comfortable private transfer from Beijing to Tianjin Port Xingang with a four-day excursion in the city? Great Wall Adventure Club is here to help. We have a large fleet of cars and vans with licensed tour guides and professional drivers. We make sure that your private transfer will be safe, comfortable and relaxing.

 

Day 01: Arrival in Beijing

 

Upon arrival in Beijing, (at either the train station or airport), you will be met by your English-speaking guide and driver. You will be taken to your hotel in Beijing, where you will have the opportunity to relax and prepare for the days ahead.

 

Day 02: Beijing (L, D)

 

After being picked up in your hotel at about 8:00am, we will head over to the political center of the country, Tiananmen Square. The largest public square in the world, Tiananmen Square is seen as China’s political center. Its grounds have seen some turbulent moments, from the May 4th Movement of 1919 to the political turmoil of 1989. The south of the square is marked by the Chairman Mao Memorial Hall, while the center of the square is dominated by the Monument to the People’s Heroes, an imposing 10-story granite obelisk. To the east is the National Museum of China, and to the west is the Great Hall of the People, home to China’s legislative bodies. The north of the square is dominated by the Gate of Heavenly Peace, known for its iconic portrait of Mao Zedong, and is the national emblem of China.

 

After walking across the street, we will enter what is perhaps the greatest attraction in China, the Forbidden City. After walking across the square we will enter the Forbidden City (known in Chinese as Gu Gong), the largest surviving palace complex and the former home of the emperors of the Ming and Qing Dynasty. The Forbidden City is one of the greatest attractions in the world. Built by the third Ming emperor between 1406-1422, the Forbidden City served as the official residence to the Emperor of China until the last emperor, Puyi, was forced to evacuate in 1924. The Forbidden City is divided into two parts. The southern section, or the Outer Court was where the emperor exercised his supreme power over the nation. The northern section, or the Inner Court, was where he lived with his royal family. Consisting of 980 buildings and with 8,707 bays of rooms, the Forbidden City is the best example of classical Chinese architecture in the world, and is a wonder to behold.

 

Next we will explore the Temple of Heaven park. The complex was visited by the Emperors of the Ming and Qing dynasties for annual ceremonies of prayer to Heaven for good harvest. The Temple of Heaven park is best known for the Hall of Prayer for Good Harvests, an iconic building famed for its magnificent triple-gabled circular roof. You will also have an opportunity to walk the same imperial walkway that the same emperors walked hundreds of years ago in their holy rites. You will also see Beijing’s senior citizens using the park grounds for everything from tai chi and ballroom dancing to bullwhip practice!

 

Following lunch we’ll go to the Summer Palace. Being northwest of the city center, the Summer Palace has the largest royal park and being well preserved, the Summer Palace is ranked amongst the most noted and classical gardens of the world. In 1998, UNESCO listed it as one of the World Heritage Sites. Like most of the gardens of Beijing, it could not elude the rampages of the Anglo-French allied force of 1860 and was destroyed by fire. In 1888, Empress Dowager Cixi embezzled navy funds to reconstruct it for her own benefit, changing its name to Summer Palace (Yiheyuan). She spent most of her later years there, dealing with state affairs and entertaining. Highlights not to be missed are climbing Longevity Hill, viewing the Empress Dowager Cixi’s extravagant Marble Boat, and talking a walk down Suzhou jie, a canal meant to resemble the beautiful river city of Suzhou.

 

After a delectable dinner featuring Beijing’s signature dish of Peking Duck, you’ll be treated to a Kung Fu show. “The Legend of Kung Fu” is presented by China Heaven Creation International Performing Arts Co., Ltd. ( CHC)-- China's leading performance art production company. “The Legend of Kung Fu” follows the story of a young boy found wandering outside an ancient temple. Like every boy in China, he dreams of becoming a Kung Fu master. On the road to enlightenment the young monk encounters many difficulties and temptations. The show has English subtitles shown above the stage to keep you informed of the story line. The actors do not speak, and the show is all Kung Fu, dance and acrobatics. It is the fusion of modern dance with Chinese traditional arts, which make this performance unique and spectacular. The best Kung Fu practitioners from all over China have been found for this production and it shows on the stage. Their average age is just 17 years old! Additionally the costumes, set design and special effects are up to international standards, created by some of the best stage directors and designers in China. The show will last for about 1.5-2 hours.

 

Following the show you’ll be taken to your hotel for the night.

 

Day 03: Beijing (L, D)

 

You will be picked up from your Beijing hotel at about 8:30 am, and from there we’ll make our way to the Great Wall at Mutianyu. Although it has gotten a face-lift, it avoids the army of tourists that plague Badaling. Mutianyu offers some breathtaking views of the valley and wall below, and if you look to your right you’ll see a large sign engraved in the side of the mountain encouraging you to “Cherish the teachings of Chairman Mao”. Mutianyu has also become popular for visiting foreign leaders and celebrities (former U.S. President Clinton visited Mutianyu on one of his trips to China).

 

You can hike down to the parking lot, take a cable car, or take a toboggan ride (highly recommended, and lots of fun!) down to meet our driver.

 

After lunch we’ll make the drive to the Ming Tombs.  The Ming Tombs, about 50 km/31 miles from Beijing, are where 13 emperors of the Ming Dynasty (1368-1644) are buried. This site was carefully chosen for its feng shui principles by the third Ming emperor Yongle (who also moved the capital from Nanjing to Beijing and began construction on the Forbidden City). The tomb we will visit, Dingling, is the tomb of the Wanli Emperor. It is the only one of the Ming Dynasty Tombs to have been excavated. It also remains the only imperial tomb to have been excavated since the founding of the People's Republic of China. After viewing the tombs, we will head to the “Shenlu”, or the Spirit Way. The Spirit Way leads into the complex, lined with statues of guardian animals and officials, with a front gate consisting of three-arches, painted red, and called the "Great Red Gate". The Spirit Way, or Sacred Way, starts with a huge stone memorial archway lying at the front of the area. Constructed in 1540, during the Ming Dynasty, this archway is one of the biggest stone archways in China today.

 

We’ll then head to the northern area of Beijing, in order to go to the Olympic Green. The Olympic Green was the center of the event that captivated the world for two weeks in August of 2008, and is where a majority of the Olympic events took place. The highlights that you will see today include the Bird’s Nest (officially known as the Beijing National stadium) and the Water Cube (the Beijing National Aquatics Center). The stadium gets its nickname from its outward design, which originated from the study of Chinese ceramics, implementing steel beams in order to hide supports for the retractable roof, thus giving the stadium the appearance of a "Bird's nest". The Bird’s Nest hosted the Opening and Closing Ceremonies, athletic events, and football final of the 2008 Summer Olympics, from 8 August to 24 August 2008. Since the Olympic’s end, the Bird’s Nest has been used to host events ranging from opera to a ski park.

You will then be taken to your hotel for the night.

 

Day 04: Beijing (L)

 

After picking you up at your hotel in the morning, we will head straight to the Beijing Zoo. Unlike other zoos in China, the Beijing Zoo has the distinct look of a classical Chinese garden. Initially an imperial manor during the Ming Dynasty, the grounds was converted into a zoo in 1908 with the original name being The Ten Thousand Animal Garden. The Beijing Zoo exhibits the wild and rare animals of China. Outside of traveling to Sichuan, this is the best place in China to view the Giant Panda. The zoo also includes a monkey hall, lion hall, and tiger hall. Altogether there are more than 30 large halls exhibiting animals.

 

After visiting the zoo we will go to visit the Lhama Temple. Other than the temples in Tibet this is the best Buddhist temple in China. Work on the Lhama Temple originally began in 1694 during the Qing dynasty. It served as an official residence for court eunuchs. It was then converted into the home of the Prince Yong, a son of the Kangxi Emperor and himself the future Yongzheng Emperor. It was converted into a lamasery after his ascension to the throne in 1722. Today the Lhama Temple still functions as a monastery and temple of the Geluk School of Tibetan Buddhism. Walking through the temple your senses will be enveloped by the incenses and the chanting of the visiting monks and other followers. The rear Pavilion of Ten Thousand Happinesses features a 26m tall statue of the Maitreya Buddha cared from a single piece of white sandalwood. It is one of three artworks in the Lhama Temple that were included in the Guiness Book of World Records, and it is not to be missed on your visit.

 

Then it is just a 5 minute walk across the street to the Confucius Temple. The Temple of Confucius was initially built in 1302 and additions were made during the Ming and Qing dynasties. It has a total area of 22,000 square meters (5.4 acres). It is the second largest temple constructed for Confucius, the greatest thinker and educationalist in ancient China, ranking only behind the Temple of Confucius in Qufu, Shandong Province. This temple consists of four courtyards. The main structures include Xianshi Gate (Gate of the First Teacher), Dacheng Gate (Gate of Great Accomplishment), Dacheng Hall (Hall of Great Accomplishment) and Chongshengci (Worship Hall). Dacheng Hall is the main building in the temple, where the memorial ceremony for Confucius was often held. Inside the temple one can see that 198 stone tablets are positioned on either side of the front courtyard, containing 51,624 names of Jinshi (the advanced scholars) of the Yuan, Ming and Qing dynasties. Also 14 stone stele pavilions of the Ming and Qing dynasties hold the precious historical information of ancient China.

 

We’ll then take a break for a Chinese lunch, and after lunch you’ll be taken to the Houhai lake area for your Hutong tour. Hutongs are courtyard homes grouped together around narrow alleys, and served as the lifeline and center of everyday life in old Beijing. The Hutongs were a critical component in the development and evolution of Beijing folklore and culture. Going on this Hutong tour by rickshaw, you will feel like you have traveled back in time to a far different China, one where there was still an emperor sitting in the Forbidden City, and where there was still enough time to enjoy the simple pleasures of common life. Following your Hutong tour we’ll visit the old Drum Tower, which was built in1272 during the reign of Kublai Khan, at which time it stood at the very heart of the Yuan capital Dadu. In ancient times the upper story of the building housed 24 drums, of which only one survives. Its head is made of an entire ox hide and is 1.5 meters in diameter. A sword score on the side of the drum is a souvenir of the Eight-Power Allied Forces' invasion of Beijing in 1900.

 

From the Drum Tower we’ll walk towards Nanluoguxiang. Nanluoguxiang is one of the best-preserved historical areas of downtown Beijing, as well as being one of the most chic and trendy places to hang out in the afternoons and evenings. The 768-metre-long south-north central lane, with 16 Hutong branching off the central lane, is full of interesting craft shops, relaxing cafes and trendy bars. The area has a history of over 700 years and is one of the oldest Hutong neighborhoods in the city. After your tour of Nanluoguxiang, you have two choices: you can either be transferred back to your hotel (you’ll be back by 6:00pm) in Beijing or you can continue exploring Naluoguxiang for the rest of the evening.

 

Day 05: Beijing-Xingang Port

 

After picking you up from your hotel we’ll head to Tianjin Home Port Xingang. Tianjin Port Xingang is about 200 km from Beijing and the drive will take about 2-3 hours. We should arrive at Tianjin Home Port at around 4:00pm or your designated time. Your tour guide will escort you from the beginning to the end. Your tour guide and driver will give you a hand in carrying your big pieces of luggage to the Tianjin Home Port Xingang Cruise Terminal Building from the parking lot. Bon Voyage!

 

 


 

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