China Holidays 2016, Luxury holidays in China with Abercrombie & Kent

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What to see and do in China

The world's oldest continuous civilisation: China. For centuries the most advanced empire –bequeathing to the world the dictionary, printing, gunpowder and the compass –China is one of the largest countries in the world and is home to one fifth of its population. China offers a lifetime of experiences, from ancient sites –including no less than 41 UNESCO World Heritage Sites – to buzzing cities and peaceful rural areas virtually unchanged for centuries;the difficult thing is choosing what to see. China has an incredible diversity of people, places, culture and food. We love the rich seam of history that runs through the country –sometimes literally, in the case of the Great Wall – seen in the temple-capped mountains, wreathed in mist and mystery. Modern China is epitomised in the glittering cities of Beijing, Shanghai and Hong Kong, offering their own blend of technicolour beauty in the many neon lights that adorn the high rises. China's great outdoors is in direct contrast to this: in Lijiang and Yangshuo, the light is pure, the skies unfettered by light pollution and the flora lush and green. Whether exploring the fascinating cities of the eastern seaboard, journeying along the historic Silk Road, enjoying peace and quiet amid the virginal landscape of Yunnan or experiencing the authentic way of life in Tibet, in China you can always be sure of an experience to remember.

China holidays with A&K

From home cooking classes with a family in Yunnan, to table-tennis with primary school stars, to chopstick lessons with our brilliant guide, as he recounted an epic 5,500-mile walk along the Great Wall, the letters we receive tell us it's the small intimate experiences that help make Abercrombie & Kent China holidays so memorable.

We're glad to hear it. We aim to make this vast dynamic country more manageable, helping you make sense of a destination where the ancient and traditional are juxtaposed with the startlingly modern. As one of the first international travel companies in China, A&K has a well-established offices in Beijing, Shanghai, Xian and Hong Kong, co-ordinating a network of highly qualified, fluent English-speaking guides. Unsurprisingly letters from our clients praise our China tour director, Gerald Hatherly, consistently named as one of the world's top travel professionals.

As part of the team offering A&K tours to China in 2016, 2017, he will help introduce you to the rapidly expanding metropolises of Shanghai and Beijing, the country's cultural and political heart. You'll have opportunities off the normal tourist radar, including entry to usually closed sections of the Forbidden Palace and meeting artists from the country's burgeoning contemporary movement.

We'll show you Guangxi's mesmerising rice terraces, the Yangzi's River's dramatic gorges - from our luxury river cruiser, MS Yangzi Explorer - and Guilin's karsts and cormorant fishermen. We'll amaze you with contrasts, from the Taklamakan Desert's solitude, to Hong Kong's exuberant retail frenzy and Yunnan's serene hot springs, forests and mountain rivers.

It's vast, diverse and thrilling, but also challenging. Whether you're travelling with family or solo, with A&K China holidays you're in safe hands, not to mention the best vehicle fleet around. Just ask our clients. When one recently missed a domestic flight from Beijing to Datong, we instantly arranged a beautiful six-hour overland drive. And then there's the family whose daughter fell ill on the Yangzi Explorer. After sourcing the best medical care, our guide delivered a DVD and photo album of the family's first night to the Shanghai Peninsular - a parting gift to compensate for leaving the cruise early.

Useful info


Best time to be there

While there are differences in the climate according to the region in China, it is best to travel in Spring and Autumn when the weather is not too hot nor freezing cold. But we also pay attention to festival periods and special occasions.

Fly to

Beijing/Shanghai/Hong Kong (British Airways, Cathay Pacific, Virgin)

flying time

11 hours 20 minutes non-stop

time difference

GMT +7 hours


Visa required for UK passport holders

Health Requirements

Yellow Fever certificate if arriving from an endemic area

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Our experts can tailor-make the perfect holiday to suit your individual requirements, however, if you need inspiration or a starting point, below are some of our suggested trips and experiences:

Classic China

Nights: 13 | from £4,560pp

China is so vast and varied it’ll blow you away. There’s no way to see it all in one trip. But in a well-paced fortnight you can hit its Big 5 – Beijing,... Find out more

Holiday type: Tailor-made

Adventure & Culture

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Cycling through China

Nights: 14 | from £5,895pp

A tour of China which involves walking, cycling, rafting and even a motorcycle sidecar, enabling you to fully appreciate both its world-famous landmarks... Find out more

Holiday type: Tailor-made

Adventure & Culture

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The Search for Shangri-La

Nights: 11 | from £5,455pp

Wedged between Tibet and Southeast Asia, Yunnan Province affords an insight into Tibetan culture. Here you’ll discover spectacular, monasteries that seem... Find out more

Holiday type: Tailor-made

Adventure & Culture

Call 01242 547 914 Enquire

Highlights of China

Nights: 9 | from £3,895pp

From frenetic cities to romantic landscapes, this trip show-cases the best of China, old and new. Start in Beijing, finish in Shanghai and pack in archaeological... Find out more

Holiday type: Tailor-made

Adventure & Culture

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Luxury Small Group Journeys - The Ancient Silk Road with Sujata Raman

Nights: 9 | from £6,395pp

The ancient Silk Road was a network of overland trade routes that linked China with the Mediterranean. For a thousand years or so, merchants made the... Find out more

Holiday type: Group departure

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Below are some of our suggested places to stay:

Banyan Tree Lijiang


Designed along Naxi architectural lines, the Banyan Tree's luxurious villas are built around courtyards and reflect the rich fabric of the area through...Find out more

Price guide: Save | Spend | Splurge

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Sanctuary Yangzi Explorer

Yangtze River

Elegant and stylish, the Sanctuary Yangzi Explorer is perfect for relaxed cruising through spectacular and ever-changing landscapes. Carrying just...Find out more

Price guide: Save | Spend | Splurge

Family Holidays

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Shangri-La Xian


The only deluxe hotel located in the Gaoxin hi-tech development zone, the Shangri-La Hotel brings modern luxury and legendary Shangri-La hospitality to...Find out more

Price guide: Save | Spend | Splurge

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The Peninsula Hong Kong

Hong Kong  

Set in the heart of Kowloon, The Peninsula has long been recognised as one of the finest hotels in the world, offering a choice of the classic comforts...Find out more

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WALDORF ASTORIA Shanghai on the Bund


Waldorf Astoria Shanghai on the Bund offers a heritage ambiance, faultless service and those essential amenities to make your stay truly memorable and...Find out more

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Regent Seven Seas Cruises – Beijing to Bangkok

Nights: 18 | from £6,250pp

Uncover Asia’s rich tapestry of varying cultures and dynasties. From the ancient and modern wonders of China’s frenetic cities to the scenic beauty of... Find out more

Holiday type: Group departure

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Annie, Brandon, Debbie, Margaret, Vicky Hamlin, Vicky Smith and Rachel - are experts in designing travel experiences across the region to suit your personal needs, interests and budget. Their intimate knowledge of every hotel and resort featured in our Orient, India, Australasia and Indian Ocean portfolio, together with our own network of offices throughout these areas, allows us to offer unique in-depth knowledge, unparalleled insider access and the VIP service for which Abercrombie & Kent is renowned.

Read about our lastest experiences in our Travel Blog pages.

To find out more about our Orient team, click on the consultant links below or call them on 01242 547 704 or enquire online

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