10days in China
Replies: 20 - Last Post: Nov 8, 2012 6:29 AM Last Post By: jooyeon
Oct 31, 2012 4:37 AM
10days in ChinaHello all.
We are 2 couples and have found a great deal from Athens-Beijing for mid November.
This would be our first time in China.
We are in our 30's and are interested in the main sights, adventure, pretty much everything.
We have about 10 days.
The thing is-
1. Would you recommend round-trip from Beijing or flying out of another city? (about 300 euros more expensive).
2. Any suggested itinery for 10 days?
3. Train vs. Airplane?
Thank you all for your time.
Oct 31, 2012 5:03 AM
11. 300 euros is quite a high premium for an open jaw ticket, so I would recommend round trip to Beijing.
2. Beijing - train /bus - Datong -overnight train - Pingyao - train (if can get tickets) - Xian - overnight train - Beijing.
Maybe one too many benighted journeys, so perhaps do one or two legs by plane (Taiyuan - Xian for example).
Oct 31, 2012 7:27 AM
2Assuming that you're going to be spending the fairly universally suggested 5 days in Beijing (Doing the Wall, Forbidden City, XYZ) 5 more days isn't going to give you a great deal of time to go THAT far away anyway unless you fly (And, even then, you'll be pushed for time to make it worthwhile). If I were you, what I think I'd do is head somewhere else first (Xi'an for 2 days perhaps then maybe Luoyang/Pingyao or your way back to Beijing) and spend the later part of your holiday doing the Beijing things so that you can fly out from there and save your hard earned. Also, november isn't high season so you MAY be able to get train tickets to Xi'an at short notice (Hard to say - Tickets are always problematic) which will probably save you a bit more.
Oct 31, 2012 7:48 AM
3Just head to Beijing, plenty of interesting culture to keep you busy and easy access for 4-5 days, then take a side trip from there. If trains are not possible, the flights cab be cheap anyway, check ELong and CTrip for flight options from Beijing, usually about $100 for a flight to most places within 3 hours....
Dress Warm, it can be very cold in Mid Nov already in Beijing.
Oct 31, 2012 1:28 PM
4I would round trip to Beijing with that high of extra cost for an open jaw ticket. For 10 days I would spend it in Beijing and take a night train to Xian go up to Pingyao and back to Beijing. IF you can get a reasonable open jaw ticket to arrive in Beijing and out of Shanghai, I would recommend Beijing to Xian with night train to save a hotel cost and airport transfers, Night train to Shanghai and then side trips out of Shanghai to Suzhou by train which takes only 45 minutes.
Oct 31, 2012 5:36 PM
Oct 31, 2012 6:55 PM
6You would probably squeeze at most two cities in it. The popular options are Xian and Shanghai for many first-timers. Beijing at least takes about 3-4 days, Xian needs 1-2 days and Shanghai takes for 2 days with optional day tour in the nearby water towns .Those cities can be connected by overnight trains and could save the time and accomodation for daytime tour.Early reservation for the train still is required to make sure the availibility even November is low travel season. Flights at a luring discount sometimes are available in those less busy time and can be considered.
Oct 31, 2012 10:27 PM
Beijing, 3-4 days
Forbidden City, Summer Palace
Hutong tour, Temple of Heaven, Wangfujing and Xiushui streets
train to xian or flight to xian
Xian: 2-3 days
worriors ,muslim street
city wall, Big Goose Pagoda/small goose pagoda, bell and drum tower, Grand Mosque temple
Xian to Shanghai train or flight
Shanghai 2-3 days
Yuyuan Garden, Chenghuangmiao market, Nanjing road, the bund
Shanghai museum, Jade buddha temple, xintiandi, former french concession
Shanghai to Beijing bullet train
It is a rough itinerary. Hope can help. Thanks.
Nov 2, 2012 4:11 AM
8I think Manchurianexile is providing an excellent piece of advice. Consider flying directly to Xi'an - set 3 hours for clearing immigration, baggage claim, terminal change and re-checkin in Beijing. Note that (for domestic flights) you must clear customs in Beijing and check in again for after that - regardless of what the checkin attendant might tell you in Athens. Tickets for domestic flights in China can be purchased easily DIY at elong.net or travelzen - best deals are around 100 Euros, one-way.
When in Xi'an, you should be able to get some help purchasing onwards train-tickets. Buying train tickets upon arrival would be an ordeal.
Edited by: pknielsen
Nov 2, 2012 5:22 AM
Thank you all for your time and your feedback.
This helps a lot.
We have booked a round-trip to and from Beijing for a full 11 days trip.
I think it will be something like Beijing-Xi'an-Pingyao-Datong-Beijing.
We would really like to see Shanghai but I believe in the end it will work out to about the same price as the open jaw ticket (+300 euros) so perhaps we will leave Shanghai for another trip.
So which guide book have you all used to plan out your trip? I have many books from lonely planet but for China, I have heard great things for the Eyewitness book.
If you have any other general tips, info, and words of advice, it would be greatly appreciated!
Thank you all once again.
Nov 3, 2012 6:53 AM
10Eyewitness is fine for the cultural side of things, but wont help much in the logistics/getting around part, which the LP for China is huge. if you have a Ipad/Tablet, just download the sections you need.
You are not missing a lot by not seeing Shanghai, there really is nothing there culturally significant, its more about eating, drinking, shopping and touring a mostly modern cityscape...
Nov 4, 2012 12:31 PM
11Personnally, I'd rate Louyang over Datong. The Longmen Caves beats the the Yungang Caves IMHO (both are worth seeing, though) - and there is so much more to see in, or near Louyang. Pingyao, of course, is definitely worth seeing. Shanghai is not - it never stops underwhelming me as a tourist sight.
Nov 4, 2012 3:24 PM
12Great tips and advice everyone!
I really appreciate all the feedback and your opinions.
I read up on Luoyang and it looks fantastic.
If the other 3 are up for it, I would like to do a Beijing to Xi'an by plane -train to Luoyang - Pingyao - Datong - Beijing
It is about €200 in transportation but that's a lot to see so it will be worth it!
Given the tight schedule, is it possible to do Luoyang in 1 day? (Arriving in the morning and leaving to Pingyao the same evening)
doing the top Luoyang Attractions: Longmen Grottoes, Shaolin Temple & White Horse Temple.
Going to order the LP China guide also! Very excited!
Edited by: jooyeon
Edited by: jooyeon
Nov 4, 2012 4:00 PM
13You won't get to do Longmen, White Horse Temple and Shaolin in one day basically because they are so far from each other. Yes, they are all NEAR Luoyang, but all at different sides of the city from each-other.
If you get the High-Speed Train from Xi'an, you'll be delivered to Luoyang-Longmen station; just around the corner from Longmen Grottos but a 40 minute ride (Roughly) from Louyang itself. Bai Ma Si (White Horse Temple) is a similar distance away, on the other side of the city. Shaolin is a couple of hours further away at Dengfeng.
Luoyang itself is worth a visit. There are some very interesting museums and, personally, I prefer the old section of Luoyang to anything Xi'an has to offer. Furthermore, if you plan to get the train from Luoyang to Pingyao, that is where you'll need to be.
Nov 5, 2012 6:13 AM
14Super. Thanks for your advice, manchurianexile.
So I am thinking someting like this for the itinerary:
Day 1) Arrive in Beijing at 10am
Day 2) Beijing (3days)
Day 3) Beijing - overnight train/fly to Xi'an
Day 4) Xi'an
Day 5) Xi'an
Day 6) Xi'an/Luoyang
Day 7) Luoyang
Day 8) Pingyao
Day 9) Pingyao
Day 11) Beijing full day
Day 12) Fly out early morning
Hope this is do-able!
(4 star Hotel)
From US$155.60 per night
(0 star Hotel)
From US$22.12 per night
(4 star Hotel)
From US$168.31 per night