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  • China
  • Magnificent China

Magnificent China

21 Day Escorted Tour

China, East Asia
Intermediate Pace

Set amongst a backdrop of natural wonders, delight in China's historical legacy with visits to the Great Wall of China, the Terracotta Warriors and the astonishing earthen communal homes of Fujian.

2022 Dossier

2023 Dossier

Tour Highlights

  • City tours of Beijing, Xi'an, Chengdu and Shanghai
  • Tiananmen Square, Forbidden City and the Great Wall of China
  • Marvel at the 8,000-strong Terracotta Warriors
  • Encounter the Giant Pandas at Chengdu Panda Breeding Centre
  • Four-night Yangtze River Cruise sailing past the Three Gorges and Shennong Stream
  • Get off the beaten tack and visit the unique Nanjing and Chuxi Tulou clusters
Number of nights


Day 1
UK to Beijing

Depart London on your scheduled overnight flight to Beijing, via Shanghai.

Day 2

Upon arrival into Beijing you will be met by a local guide and transferred to your hotel.

Day 3

Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner

Delve into Beijing's rich history, starting at the world's largest plaza, and China's Tiananmen Square, and enter the vast Forbidden City, brimming with age-old relics and a staggering 9,999 rooms and chambers.

Day 4

Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner

Walk on a section of the emblematic Great Wall of China. Later, stroll around the world's best persevered imperial gardens at the exquisite Summer Palace before navigating Silk Street's bustling market stalls, and feasting on a succulent Peking Duck dinner.

Day 5
Beijing to Xi'an

Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner

This morning, admire the 14th Century Temple of Heaven, an architectural masterpiece which is now also a popular meeting place for locals to perform their weekly exercise routines or partake in tai chi. Transfer to the airport for an afternoon flight to Xi'an, arriving in time for dinner.

Day 6

Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner

Behold the vast underground vaults which boast the extraordinary 8,000-strong Terracotta warriors, known by many as the 'Eighth Wonder of the World'. Later, witness the intricate process of producing smaller Terracotta replicas at the Art Ceramics and Lacquer Exhibition Centre, before enjoying a colourful evening of culture at a captivating Tang Dynasty Show.

Day 7
Xi'an to Chengdu

Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner

A morning tour of Xi'an incorporates the chance to saunter along a fragment of the megalithic 14th century City Walls, followed by a visit to the Small Wild Goose Pagoda. Before boarding this afternoon's bullet train to Chengdu, try your hand at the ancient art of calligraphy, learning to script iconic Chinese symbols.

Day 8

Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner

Meet Chengdu's most famous residents and enjoy a once-in-a-lifetime encounter at the Chengdu Panda Breeding Centre; take in the delights of endearing pandas snoozing on treetops or snacking on bamboo, before exploring People's Park. Following a tasty dinner, stroll amidst the elegant architecture lining Jinli's Ancient Street.

Day 9
Chengdu to Yangtze River Cruise

Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner

Experience Chengdu's largest and bestpreserved Buddhist monastery with a visit to Wenshu Temple; greeted by the aromatic scents of burning incense, observe an assembly of local worshippers before boarding your bullet train to Yichang to embark on a four-night Yangtze River cruise.

Day 10
Yangtze River Cruise

Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner

Affording breath-taking panoramas, cruise upstream to reach your first excursion at the monumental Three Gorges Dam.

Day 11
Yangtze River Cruise

Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner

Take a side-trip to Shennong Stream, a zigzagging watercourse where local inhabitants line the shore. Sail to Wu Gorge, the prettiest of the Three Gorges followed by Qu Tang Gorge, the shortest, and in the afternoon, an optional tour of the White Emperor City explores this ancient temple, perched at the top of an island in the middle of the river.

Day 12
Yangtze River Cruise

Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner

Following an excursion at the Shibaozhai Temple, sail past the Fengdu Ghost City - the place where souls go to pass three tests before entering the afterlife, according to legend. Conclude this spellbinding cruise by sailing to the Fengdu Jade Emperor.

Day 13
Chongqing to Guilin

Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner

Disembarking at Chongqing, board this morning's bullet train to China's most picturesque region, Guilin, and witness a striking natural phenomenon at Elephant Hill, whose distinctive appearance illustrates the trunk of an elephant drinking from the Taohua River. Please note, today's lunch will be in the form of a lunch box.

Day 14
Guilin to Yangshuo

Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner

Relax in tranquillity on the Lijiang River's rippling waters. Following lunch on board, disembark in Yangshuo to explore its oldest avenue; West Street's bustling shopping district attracts visitors from all over the globe for its mesmerising combination of Eastern and international elements. Discover local heritage during an optional theatrical performance of The Impression of Liu Sanje this evening.

Day 15

Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner

After breakfast, explore the sights of Yangshuo, stopping at a traditional farming house, before an afternoon at leisure.

Day 16
Yangshuo to Xiamen

Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner

With a dramatic backdrop dominated by stunning karst formations and at the foot of Yao Mountain, visit Guilin Tea Science institute and Tea Gardens, delighting in the chance to sample traditional tea in incredible surroundings. Later, catch a flight to Xiamen and arrive in time to uncover the delicate architecture of Nanputuo Temple, an ancient Buddhist shrine, idyllically nestled in the foothills of Wulaofeng Mountains.

Day 17
Xiamen to Yongdong

Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner

Journey to the historic town of Nan Jing in Fujian Province where you can delve into ancient Chinese history whilst exploring the unique 'earth buildings' of the Nan Jing Tulou clusters. Visit the characteristic Tianluokeng Cluster, the 'leaning building' of Yauchanlou, and ancient village of Taxia. Set amongst a backdrop of natural wonders, delight in China's historical legacy with visits to the Great Wall of China, the Terracotta Warriors and the astonishing earthern communal homes of Fujian.

Day 18
Yongding to Xiamen

Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner

Dating back to the Ming Dynasty, visit the Chuxi Tulou cluster. Catch a glimpse of the Jiqing Building, the oldest of the cluster, as well as the Gengqing and Shanqing builings. Return to Xiamen after lunch for your overnight stay.

Day 19
Xiamen to Shanghai

Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner

Transfer to the airport for today's midday flight to Shanghai. Upon arrival, travel to your hotel and enjoy an afternoon at leisure.

Day 20

Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner

Commencing today's full-day tour in the heart of cosmopolitan Shanghai, discover two rare Buddhist relics, carved out of genuine white jade and housed within the generously embellished Jade Buddha Temple. Heading towards the Garden City of Suzhou, absorb the tranquil scenery of Pan Men Gardens, wander around Guangian Street, and learn about China's long-standing silk history at the Silk Museum and Factory. After dinner, return to Shanghai.

Day 21
Shanghai to the UK


Today, transfer to the airport for your return flight to the UK or onto your chosen extension.

View Full Itinerary

Dates & Prices

Price (per person)
Dates available
February 2023
from £2,719
1 Date
16th Feb - 8th Mar
April 2023
from £3,039
1 Date
20th Apr - 10th May
May 2023
from £3,089
1 Date
18th May - 7th Jun
September 2023
from £3,389
1 Date
7th Sep - 27th Sep
October 2023
from £3,089
1 Date
12th Oct - 1st Nov
November 2023
from £2,819
1 Date
23rd Nov - 13th Dec


The hotels listed below are provided for guidance only and final confirmation of your accommodation will be sent to you approximately 90 days before you travel
The Landmark Hotel
3 nights
Beijing, China
More details
Jianguo Hotel
2 nights
Xi'an, China
More details
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Extend Your Tour

Magnificent China with Hong Kong City Stay

4 Day Extension



Important Information

A visa is required for entry into China. We work closely with The Travel Visa Company who will be able to arrange your visa for you on your behalf. Please call them on 01270 250 590 and quote 'Mercury Holidays'. All applicants who wish to apply for a China Tourist Visa must do so in person at the Chinese Visa Application Centre in London, Manchester, Belfast or Edinburgh where fingerprint information will be collected. Fingerprints are not required for children under the age of 14 and adults over the age of 70. The visas take around 10 working days to issue and are valid for unlimited trips to China for 2 years from the date of issue. We therefore recommend that you apply for your visa 8 weeks before travel, however please be aware that your passport will be required for the application so make sure that you will not need it during this time.

We strongly recommend that you and all members of your party are suitably insured as soon as you book your holiday. It is a condition of booking that you must have suitable travel insurance. It is important that you purchase travel insurance that suitably covers your participation in whatever activities you may undertake at the time that you make your booking. To assist you with this, we have arranged travel insurance in partnership with Holiday Extras. To arrange your travel insurance with Holiday Extras, please call 0800 781 4237 and quote 'WK830' for preferential rates. Please ensure you provide us with the name of your insurer, policy number and their 24-hour emergency contact number as soon as possible. Mercury Holidays will not be liable for any costs incurred by you due to your failure to take out suitable travel insurance from the date of booking.

If booking more than 10 weeks before departure a deposit of £250pp will need to be paid at the time of booking with the full amount payable at 10 weeks prior to departure. The deposit applies to adults and children. If you are within 10 weeks of travel then the full balance of the holiday will be payable.

Your initial flight is to Beijing Airport with China Eastern Airlines (MU), departing from London Heathrow Terminal 4. Each passenger is entitled to 32KG of hold luggage plus 1 item of hand luggage not exceeding (Max 10kg - 56cm/45cm/25cm) in size. Should you wish to take additional luggage you will need to pay extra at check-in. Check-in should be at least 3 hours before departure. IMPORTANT: Please note that final flight details will be confirmed on your final documentation which will be sent to you approximately 10 days before departure. A printed E-ticket is no longer required at check-in, all you need to do is present your passport to the staff at the desk and your boarding pass will be given to you.

It is your responsibility to check any health and vaccination requirements applicable to your booked arrangements. We can only provide general information about this. Health and hygiene facilities and disease risks vary from country to country. You should take health advice about your own needs as early as possible and in good time before your departure. Sources of information include; www.fco.gov.uk, http://travelhealthpro.org.uk/, www.hpa.org.uk, your General Practitioner or a specialist clinic.

This tour is accessible to most people with an average level of fitness and normal mobility. It involves full days of sightseeing, often on foot, and includes some climbing of stairs and getting on and off coaches and boats. This tour is not suitable for anyone with walking difficulties.

The currency in China is the Renminbi, known as RMB or CNY. It is often referred to as the Yuan. We recommend that you exchange your currency before you depart. US Dollars are widely accepted in China should you wish to keep an alternative currency on you.