Silk Road Highlights Tours and China's Golden Triangle Cities
Combined with the Golden Triangle cities, this Silk Road tour offers an adventure for first-time visitors to China. You can not only see the popular highlights but also go off the beaten path.
from US$4,030 p/p
Jun. to Oct.
Our trip to Li Jiang and Shaxi Yunnan
We arrived at Lijiang on 9/8. We enjoyed the time in Lijiang a lot with good hotel selection and a well planned program. We went onto Shaxi for the local singing festival of the local minority groups. It was a fantastic experience. What makes the trip most memorable is our guide Alice. She took excellent care of us, anticipating our every need. She was personable, warm and very knowledgeable. We shared many laughters and traded stories. She brought smiles to us during the entire trip. We will specifically ask for her again when we come back to Yunnan. Five star service.More
Consumer, Sep 2023
Great trip around Shanghai
This was our first time ever visiting Shanghai so we wanted to see good places to go to and good food to eat in Shanghai. That's why we booked with China Highlights. They're very responsive and quick to arrange our 3 day trip. Our guide name is Qi and she is a very sweet and helpful person. She knew we wanted to explore many local foods, so she brought us some local breakfast foods when she picked us up from our hotel, just so we can try everything! She was knowledgeable as well about the culture and history of the places we went to. Will definitely recommend this tour and use China Highlights again for our next trip to China!More
Sherry, Sep 2023
Great way to see the city
Private tour with China highlights made seeing Xi'an super easy. We saved a lot of time with a private driver, and our guide Jenny took really good care of us, sending instructions for where to meet once getting off the train and made everything feel really safe and easy. She also accommodated a number of last minute changes to our itinerary without batting an eye. She was very patient, knowledgeable and friendly. It was great having a guide who grew up locally in the area to show us around (which is not always the case, from my previous experiences elsewhere). Would definitely recommend!More
Stephanie N, Sep 2023
One Day Beijing Trip (Great Wall, Summer Palace) With Jennifer
My tour guide Jennifer made this quick one day trip to Beijing great! The day started out a bit overcast and rainy when I landed, but Jennifer’s positive attitude and kind communication (along with her being able to keep up/put up with my jokes) made it fine.Despite this, Jennifer and our driver Chen were able to swing an extra photo shoot stop at the Olympic Stadium. I guess it gives me an excuse to come back to visit again, and when I do - I will use China Highlights and this great fantastic team.More
Alan Landau, Sep 2023
Mervyn is what we call a perfect tour guide!
Mervyn is what we call a perfect tour guide! She is extremely informative all the way through. She knows hers stuff and she is also enthusiastic, knowledgeable, personable and very willing to help. The whole day was perfect. A great amount of walking and a lots of physical activity ( hiking) and she was all smiling, accommodating and keeping us informative. She was absolutely the best tour guide we've ever encountered in China. Her English is perfect! Everything was so well organized. Her knowledge of the local culture and history is impressive. FantasticMore
pdaroundthewrorld, Sep 2023
Best Great Wall experience
Used China Highlights for a private all-day tour of Jinshanling portion of the Great Wall. One of the best days of my life! Tour guide Alan and a driver met me at my hotel and the ride was very comfortable. Alan was extremely knowledgable and friendly, I really enjoyed talking with him. The scenery was astoundingly beautiful; this is a less touristy portion of the Wall. The hiking was fun, Alan brought plenty of water, and showed me things I would not have noticed by myself. On the way back to the hotel, we stopped at a local restaurant for lunch that Alan had arranged - delicious! Once in a lifetime experience.More
LZviajera, Sep 2023
Our tour guide was Mervyn, and she was amazing! She had great knowledge of Xi'an and the silk road, and we learned so many things we didn't know before. The Muslim quarter is a must-see, with so many streets of food. Terracotta warriors were breathtaking. We did a Hanfu experience and enjoyed walking the city at night in our tang Dynasty outfits. We wish we spent more than 2 days here as there's so much to do. Definitely recommend this tour and will be visiting again!More
Laura A, Sep 2023
Unforgettable trip to Guilin
We enjoyed an incredible two day trip in Guilin, taking a brief half-day boat cruise on the Li River and cycling around Yangshuo in the afternoon with our guide Gary. Gary met us at the airport and made us feel very welcome, providing us with five-star service. He gave us a lot of insight about Guilin and the Guangxi region and even gave us a tai chi lesson on the boat. He provided us excellent dining suggestions for the evening as well as suggestions of things to do. Thank you Gary for making our trip to Guilin so memorable!More
Regis B, Sep 2023
Rated 5 out of 5 stars
We were paired with great guides on every city, very knowleadgeble and hardworking people that made our trip fabulous. Jack in Beijing was brilliant and very resourceful making sure we enjoyed the city even when he wasn't with us. In Xi'An we were paired with Crystal that was incredibly smart and made sure we felt we had not only a guide but a friend to rely on in Xi'An, we loved how she made sure we tried the best food and fruit available and helped us from arrival to departure from Xi'An. Finally, kudos to Gary (Wei Li) that worked with us in Guiling and Yangshuo. Gary is a local to Guiling and truly proud of his city and origins. We learned a lot from him and he trully went above and beyond to ensure we had a great time in Guiling adjusting the itinerary to our liking and taking time to explain everything. On our flight out of Guiling we had a bit of an issue with our tickets (booked by ourselves) and Gary promptly lent a hand to help us sort it out with the airport staff, trully a champion. If you are heading to Guiling with Chinahighlights, make sure to have Gary as your guide.More
Moises, Sep 2023
Our guide, Linda, was by far the best person to have for our tours of The Forbidden City, Tianamen Square, and Mutianyu Great Wall. She was an encyclopedia with great knowledge of Chinese History and was able to explain every detail of what we were seeing. She picked us up with a very nice car and driver from our hotel both days, at the time most convenient to us, and dropped us back off wherever we wanted at the end of our tours. Both the Forbidden City and the Great Wall are marvels of human and Chinese achievements and are a must to see in Beijing. Visiting them both with a tour guide that feels more like a friend was certainly helping enjoying it even more.More
Robin Z, Sep 2023
Stunning Yellow Mountain and beautiful Ancient Villages
We had the most fantastic experience with our tour guide, Jack Fan, who is very knowledgeable about the Yellow Mountain and was able to get us quickly to the most stunning highlights. He was our "photographer" anytime we wanted a photo and that was very often. We made the most of our time having him guiding us. He was truly the mountain man as he is a local there. He is very passionate about what he does. He loves history, nature, and travel, which is a must for a guide. He provided historical facts about the stunning Ancient villages at Hong Cun and Xidi. He answered any questions we had about history, nature, and current things we had. I felt like he was a professor, and we were his students in a very good way. He was NEVER late, and neither was our driver. They never bought us anywhere to "sell" us things. He took us to buy tea only when we asked to buy a specific tea, staying much later than he should have! I wanted to check out lotus and rice fields, which was not on the itinerary, but he squeezed it in for us. We were very well taken care of. I highly recommend Jack for a tour guide who speaks English.More
annemompt, Sep 2023
An Unforgettable Tibetan Adventure - Qinghai Train Ride Y971
I recently embarked on an unforgettable journey to Tibet, a land steeped in mysticism and rich cultural heritage. My train trip on the famous scenic Qinghai route on train Y971 Lhasa played a significant role in making this trip an extraordinary experience.Upon my arrival in Lhasa via an overnight train, I was warmly welcomed by the guide assigned Tenzin Lhatse. He had waited for more than 3 hours as he was not informed there was a change in the train schedule. Nontheless, it did not dampen his warm attitude and the seamless transferfrom the train station to the hotel set a positive tone for my stay.The highlight of my stay was undoubtedly the visit to the iconic Potala Palace. The sheer grandeur and architectural brilliance of this historic site left me in awe. The guidance of my knowledgeable tour guide, who revealed the stories behind each shrine, enriched my experience. However, the strict visitor limits and rules underscored the importance of preserving this ancient marvel. The Old Barkhor Street Walking Tour was a journey through time. From Jokhang Temple to the bustling local market, each stop offered insights into Tibetan daily life and folk customs. The Pandatsang Compound's history and the cup of Tibetan sweet tea at Ani Tsangkhung Nunnery added unique flavors to the tour.Overall, my journey through Tibet was an incredible odyssey into a world of spirituality, culture, and natural beauty. I'm glad to have taken this step with my wife to challenge the train ride which was totally worthy of this lifetime.More
GOH-family-tours, Sep 2023
Wonderful trip to the Chinese Silk Road
Special shout out to our guide for the Gansu leg, Helen, who was the most caring guide we have come across in all of our travels. Make sure you ask for her!More
ED, Sep 2023
Fantastic first trip in Shanghai
My partner and I were visiting China for the first time. Our tour guide was Martin, who was friendly and very knowledgeable. He adjusted the tour to our needs and gave us an extensive tour of Shanghai as well as many fascinating insights on China. He also went above and beyond and offered us plenty of recommendations on what to do in the evenings, how to get there, and even made bookings for us. Martin, thanks again!More
Regis, Sep 2023
Yangshuo is magical from the misty…
The guide Lily has a great knowledge in hidden gems and the history about the places. Very memorable experience that i have thanks to them.More
Dony Yugo, Sep 2023
Beijing is AMAZING
Linda Wang our amazing tour guide helped us to have an unforgettable trip to all the best of Beijing. From organizing the driver (also excellent) to drop us/pick us up exactly when we were leaving busy tourist sites, excellent food recommendations, fascinating knowledge relevant to us and our children (13yo and 11yo) making The Forbidden City, Tiannamen Square, Great Wall, Beijing Zoo and The Hutongs thoroughly enjoyable. Handling all the entrance/exit passport and ticket requirements, interpreting, answering any questions we had about local culture, we were so comfortable and happy, never rushed, everything you could want and more.More
Michelle A, Sep 2023
Incredible 2 day tour of Jiuzhaiguo
Our tour guide Mary spoke perfect English, was so nice to us and took us to all the best sights in Jiuzhaiguo. It was an unforgettable tour with incredible views!More
Declan O, Sep 2023
Helen is the best Panda tour guide going around!
I had a fantastic Panda tour with Helen in Chengdu City. From the moment she picked me up, my energy was low from a heap of travelling, but Helen quickly brought me up a notch with her breathtaking passion for Pandas. Not only did she provide a fantastic experience accommodating my every need, but she was also a genuinely kind and joyful company to tour the city with. I can't recommend Helen enough - you won't regret it!More
Isaac C, Sep 2023
Two days in Xi’an
What an amazing few days in Xi’an! Our guide Jenny was first class - very knowledgeable and very helpful, she went out of her way to make sure we had the best experience like ordering us coffees & food and booking dinners for us. The highlight was of course visiting the Terracotta Warriors, but we also really enjoyed visiting a local family to make dumplings. Can’t recommend this trip and Jenny enough!More
Marvin K, Sep 2023
Fantastic experiences in Guilin and the beautiful surroundings together with Vincent.
Go44854472794, Sep 2023
Below is the detailed tour itinerary, which is designed to provide inspiration for your immersion tour. We will follow your requests and assist you to customize your family journey to China.
Your guide will greet you outside the luggage claim area. Please look for your name on a sign. Then you will be transferred to your hotel, which takes about 1 hour. After you have checked in, you can enjoy your free day!
Tip to tailor-make your tour:
Most people usually prefer some free time to acclimatize to the jet lag. However, we are happy to customize the itinerary if you are excited to see this city sooner.
In the morning, walking through Tian'anmen Square, the largest square in the world, you will step into the Forbidden City. Countless events happened there. Every hall has its own stories to share and your guide will bring them alive for you as you visit these majestic buildings.
After lunch, a rickshaw ride (30 minutes) will introduce you to the local lifestyle. You will meet the locals, listen to their stories, and learn how life has changed over the years.
Tips to tailor-make your tour:
Do you want to discover the local life in depth? Visiting a wet market or taking part in a cooking class is a good way to get close to the locals.
Once a very important royal temple, the Temple of Heaven has exquisite architecture. As time has gone on, it has become a city park for locals. In the morning, you can see seniors doing their morning exercises. If you like, you can join them.
After a 1½-hour drive, you will reach the Mutianyu section of the Great Wall. After lunch, you will take the round-way cable car to the wall. As a masterpiece of restoration, you can see its original glory.
Tips to tailor-make your tour:
Doing tai chi is quite popular at the Temple of Heaven. If you're interested in this, we can arrange a tai chi class for you.
Besides Mutianyu, you have more options for the Great Wall with distinctive features, such as a wild section of the Great Wall for hiking and a night tour for a unique experience. Just tell us if you want something different.
After breakfast, pay a visit to the Summer Palace, take a boat ride on Kunming Lake, and get an insight into the imperial theater.
Taste some delicious Peking duck for lunch at a local popular restaurant. You will fly to Xi'an after lunch. Your Xi'an guide will be waiting for you and will transfer you to your hotel.
Start your tour with the Terracotta Army. It is regarded as one of the greatest archaeological sites in the world. You will meet hundreds of life-size terracotta soldiers, horses, and chariots in battle array.
After lunch, you will visit a craftsman in a local cave dwelling to learn the secrets of making clay warriors. There, you can make your mini warrior.
In the late afternoon, climb up to the ancient city wall. You can ride a bike or have a leisurely walk to enjoy the view of the city.
Visit Big Wild Goose Pagoda. It's the landmark of Xi'an, which houses precious Buddhist material dating back to the 7th century.
Have a date with Shaanxi History Museum. You will see the largest collections in China, including clay figurines, bronze wares, and jade articles.
In the late afternoon, visit the bustling Muslim Quarter, a paradise of local snacks. After the tour, you will go to the airport and fly to Dunhuang.
Dunhuang, once a hub of the Silk Road, has prosperous cultural relics and stunning scenery.
Discovering the Mogao Caves, you will see the oldest Buddhist artworks shining on the Silk Road. Guided by an expert from the Dunhuang Research Academy, you will have a professional introduction to the culture and history behind the mural paintings and statues.
In the afternoon, take a camel ride along the Singing Sand Dunes, sit next to Crescent Moon Spring, and watch the sunset if the weather permits.
Tips to tailor-make your tour:
The Mogao Caves are recommended for an in-depth tour. You can visit the Dunhuang Research Academy to appreciate copies of other mural masterpieces. You can also copy a sample mural on a mud slab with the guidance of the teacher.
Unlike the Great Wall in Beijing, the Great Wall of the Han Dynasty was built with sand and weeds instead of bricks. The ruins display how people used the limited materials to set up their defensive system.
After lunch, take the bullet train to Turpan. You can enjoy the Gobi Desert scenery along the way.
Visit the Emin Minaret in the morning. Go into the mosque and try to tell the time by checking the sunlight on the wall.
Then discover the extraordinary irrigation system, the Karez Well System. This tunnel system is still widely used in Turpan after thousands of years. You can learn about its history and functions and go underground to see it.
Have lunch at a local Uyghur restaurant. You can see its vineyards if you like.
Finally, walking through the ancient city of Jiaohe, your guide will introduce you to the unbelievable construction method and tell you the vivid stories behind these raw earth buildings.
After breakfast, you will depart from Turpan and be driven to Urumqi. Upon arrival, you will explore the charming Heavenly Lake. Surrounded by snowcapped mountains, the lake is simply beautiful under the blue sky. Take a cruise to get close to its beauty or choose a cable car ride for a higher and better viewing point. Doing some walking is a good way to admire the attractive scenery along the paths.
You can't miss the Xinjiang Uyghur Autonomous Region Museum if you are a fan of museum tours. You will see the well-preserved ancient Caucasian mummies and their artifacts. You can also find a collection of silk articles and other artifacts from various eras of history as well as written materials in different languages.
After lunch, visit the great bazaar, Erdaoqiao Market. Walking inside this bustling market, you can find goods of the typical Uyghur style. If you like, you can look for some souvenirs.
After the tour, take a flight to Shanghai.
Discover the exquisite Yu Garden. This is the best place to get a glimpse of ancient Shanghai, as reflected in the movies. Go into it to experience the unique design, exquisite carvings, and traditional lifestyle.
A nice stroll along the Bund will introduce you to the living history of Shanghai from its colonial buildings.
Finally, take the fastest elevator in the world to the observation level of Shanghai Tower (the highest building in China) and take in a panoramic view of the Bund.
At the appointed time, your guide and driver will take you to the airport to catch your flight home. They will see you off after helping you with the airline check-in procedure.
We wish you a great trip!
Price from: $4,030 (Tour code: gh-cht-sl-02)
Your 1:1 travel consultant will reply within 1 working day. Over 50% of our clients complete their bookings within 10 days of submitting their inquiry.
Every element of the tour above can be tailored. Feel free to tell us your ideas and we will be happy to make adjustments for you.
1. Extend the Tour
- Suzhou and/or Hangzhou: add 1–4 days — water towns, gardens, the Grand Canal, and West Lake
- Chengdu: add 2–3 days — a panda keeper program, have your photo taken next to a panda, and the Leshan Giant Buddha
- Hong Kong: add 2–3 days — Victoria Peak, Hong Kong Disneyland, and a day-tour of Macau
- Free days: Yangshuo and Shanghai are popular destinations to add one or more free days to explore on one's own.
- More destinations: Zhangjiajie, Huangshan, and Tibet... Inform us of your interests and we will offer you some recommendations.
Various types of accommodation are available, including famous 5-star hotel chains, 4-star hotels in the best locations, good value 3-star hotels, or boutique hotels that reflect the style of the region. Whatever your accommodation preferences are, our travel experts will seek out and find the perfect one for you.
Most hotels in China allow at most three people in one room. If there are more than three people in your group, we will check if there is family room available or do our best to arrange interconnecting rooms or adjoin rooms.
China is a huge country, so to make your travel experience more efficient, we usually arrange flights to connect your destinations.
China's high-speed rail network is a fast-paced way to travel. We recommend taking high-speed trains for journeys of less than 6 hours to interested customers — please tell us if you are one of them.
Lunches at popular local restaurants are included for you so you can taste authentic Chinese food. Your guide will assist you with ordering the dishes.
Vegetarian, halal, kosher, Indian, or gluten-free — all your dietary requirements can be taken care of by our experienced private guides. Let us know if you have any of these dietary requirements during your booking.
Why Travel with Global Highlights (98.8% positive customer reviews among 10,000+)
- Unique experiences tailored to your interests: Enjoy a premium trip that goes beyond the typical tourist attractions.
- Hassle-free travel and peace of mind: Every aspect of your trip will be carefully planned and organized by your 1:1 travel consultant.
- Experienced and knowledgeable guides: Your guides will be local and love to work for travelers' smiles.
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