China Basics Question
Replies: 6 - Last Post: Apr 3, 2013 1:37 PM Last Post By: hennaLisa
Mar 18, 2013 7:13 PM
China Basics QuestionI'd love some preliminary suggestions for not-to-be-missed stops in China as well as the best way to travel between points (and how long the trips take).
A little about my group - 3 adults, two young and able-bodied, one who uses a walker because of a bad leg. She can climb some stairs with help and is extremely hardy. 2 kids ages 2 and 5.
We generally backpack by bus, train, boat, taxi, etc. - sometimes affording short flights within a country. We can't do much hiking, but we LOVE being in nature, taking short walks, and visiting off-the-beaten path villages and culture. This will be our first trip to China, though we've been to India, Vietnam, Laos, Burma, Cambodia, etc.
In the past, our general travel rhythm tends to be morning activities, lunch, afternoon siesta (either in hotel or on a bus ride), evening activities and dinner, bed, repeat. Afternoon bus rides of 3-4 hours work great for our kids to get a nice nap. We'd be interested in doing longer trips at night by sleeper train if possible/reasonable.
We probably have a few months we could devote to China.
Mar 18, 2013 11:48 PM
1In a few months you can see quite a lot. I recommend a circuit starting from Beijing, going along the east coast (going inland in the coastal provinces - Shandong, Jiangsu, Zhejiang, Anhui, Jiangxi, Fujian and Guangdong), getting to Hong Kong, and then entering the mainland again, this time getting back to Beijing along a western route through Guangxi, Hunan, Guizhou, Yunnan, Sichuan, Gansu, Shaanxi and Shanxi Provinces. All along you'll see great nature, wonderful villages, vibrant cities and there will be lots of opportunities to keep your little ones entertained.
You can also do it vice versa (west and then east). If you do the whole route thoroughly it should take anywhere between 5-8 months, depending on what you want to see. If you have less time you can cut places along these routes of course.
Traveling with children in China can be lots of fun. We do it with a 2 year old, but we drive here so it's a bit easier I guess. When you know some more details (how long exactly, budget, places of interest), I'd be happy to answer any specific questions. And one more thing, forget about not-to-be-missed stops, just go and plan your route according to what you find interesting and you'll have fun.
Mar 19, 2013 6:20 AM
2If you browse through the posts on this forum, you will quickly see the popular tourist sites that are recommended. I took the overnight, soft sleeper train from Beijing to Yangzhou, which is where Marco Polo was governor. It is next to the Grand Canal and the Yangtze River. Only one hour's bus ride from Nanjing, which also has lots of history. It was about 4 hours' bus ride to Shanghai. Yangshuo is frequently touted as beautiful. There are nearby rice terraces. Also, there are the terra cotta warriors that are popular. This summer, I am visiting Yunnan's Shangri-la, Dali, and Kunming, plus Sichuan's giant pandas in Chengdu.
There are excellent guidebooks to give you ideas about sites to see. You need a map of China to plot your route. Check the train routes and schedules.
Mar 19, 2013 10:09 AM
Mar 20, 2013 7:52 AM
Mar 20, 2013 10:12 PM
5The age rules regarding senior discount for attraction can be 50, 55, 60 or whatever based on the ticket seller’s discretion. Always ask with your passport ready.
Public transport ticket prices are not simple for kids. For trains (13 rules), Children with height below 1.2 meter can board free of charge with an adult but no seat/berth. Children with height between 1.2m to 1.5m have 50% discount can board with an adult, but, again, will have no seat/berth.
BTW, children’s height is measured without footwear.
Buses or subway… hope it is not more complicated than train!
Apr 3, 2013 1:37 PM
6These are all great tips - thank you so much!
We wil probably only have 2 months. We really love nature and quaint villages, and would especially prioritize sites that don't have many stairs. If there are a few sites that would be worth seeing, which have many stairs, then our one companion with a bad leg would probably sit at a restaurant or nice bench outside the monument and just enjoy the scenery.
Are there ways to see the great wall, terracotta soldiers, and any other really famous sites without using many stairs? Any recommendations would be very much appreciated!
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