China Advemture tour with Intrepid

Oct 6th, 2011, 05:42 AM
  #1  
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China Advemture tour with Intrepid

Hi All

I am looking at tours in China, specifically "China Adventure tour" with Intrepid. Though they are not cheap but do take the organisation and hassle out of a trip with a leader who can speak the language, which suits me fine than DIY. This will be my first time in China and a little duanted because of the language barrier, hence the decision to book a tour (at least for some of my time in China, the later of the trip will be DIY).

Can anyone give their advice or feedback if they have used Intrepid whether China tour or not? If so, what was the tour like, was it value for money? would you recommend to others? Very keen to hear peoples experiences, before booking the tour.

Thanks
son12345 is offline  
Oct 6th, 2011, 06:30 AM
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I haven't travelled with Intrepid but I did do a tour with Exodus - which I enjoyed very much. China is not a country that I would want to travel independently unless I spoke the language. Just trying to find your way around the train station in Bejieng (sp?) would be a nightmare. Enjoy.
joan47 is offline  
Oct 6th, 2011, 06:42 AM
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Hi again
The tour I took was the IMPERIAL CHINA & YANGTZE RIVER CRUISE tour which covered alot of what your planned tour covers except did not go to Hong Kong and did do a river cruise. Can't remember if your tour went to Shanghai as well or not. I believe that Intrepid is a good tour company, but as I said have never travelled with them.

Joan
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Oct 6th, 2011, 07:00 AM
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If you search the forum you will see that many of us have traveled China independently without problems. Be not afraid.
Marija is online now  
Oct 6th, 2011, 07:10 AM
  #5  
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Thank you both for your reply and info.

@Joan
I will look up the tour you mentioned, havent heard that one.

The tour that I am thinking of with Intrepid is:
Hong Kong
Yangshuo
Chengyang
Chengdu
Leshan/Emei Shan
Xi'an
Beijing

Which is good for me, because I have to get a flight from Shang hai to Sydney, so most of my time in China will be with a tour, but the latter will be DIY (book a train ticket to Shang hai, stay there for few days there until departure).
Though the tour is not cheap, and its basic accomodation, but at least it will "ease" myself in until later part.

@Marija
I realise many travellers here and other forums managed to get around, not just in Beijing or such but almost anywhere independently. Still more inclined to go with a tour for now.

Thanks again, please keep them coming on anything which may be useful to my question.
son12345 is offline  
Oct 6th, 2011, 08:16 AM
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Me again

I have travelled independently thoughout S.E. Asia - Vietnam, Thailand, Cambodia but was glad to be on a tour in China. It would be have somewhat difficult I think to arrange to get to all the places we went on the tour if I had been trying to do it myself.
joan47 is offline  
Oct 6th, 2011, 11:21 AM
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Not to muddy the waters and make your decision difficult, but I just did a tour to China with Access China Tours and loved it. I have traveled independently extensively through over 20 countries in Europe and did Russia on my own, but I don't think I would have enjoyed China by myself just due to logistics and acclimating. As much as I love trip planning, connecting the five cities I visited would have driven me insane, I think. Trip report forthcoming...
amyb is online now  
Oct 7th, 2011, 01:37 AM
  #8  
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@Joan
I had a look at Exodus and was very expensive, 21 days was well over £2000, Interpid charge £1700 (no meals, just basic accomodation and train tickets, mostly night trains) for the tour I found. Plus the optional activites are quoted in local currency (Chinese CYN), which makes them a little cheaper when you convert it to your own currency. May go ahead and book this one.
son12345 is offline  
Oct 7th, 2011, 01:45 AM
  #9  
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Also @Joan
I will be travelling around Thailand, Cambodia, Vietnam and Loas by myself, before reaching China. I am glad to hear that your experience on doing this alone as a woman has been a postive one from the sounds of it. I was a little daunted by it, going alone to these countries but the feedback I have had from other women on other forums, who have gone alone, have all said these countries are safe, provided the usual precautions are taken (same applies to anywhere really)
son12345 is offline  
Oct 7th, 2011, 02:28 AM
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I have done five tours with Intrepid, four in Asia, including Beijing to Islamabad. You can find the relevant trip reports at wilhelmswords.com - asia2001 and asia2002. Their itineraries and prices are very good, although the accommodation is often budget level.

I do agree that you can handle China quite well on your own, but also understand the desire for a tpur for a first time visitor. Just know that you have options.
thursdaysd is offline  
Oct 7th, 2011, 04:54 AM
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Thank you Thursdayd

I have read some of your blog, and very good.
son12345 is offline  
Oct 7th, 2011, 08:52 AM
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Well I have just booked that tour with my travel agent, looking forward to it. I hope the hotels/guest houses selected are not terrible..but at least clean and basic.
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Oct 7th, 2011, 03:11 PM
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I've traveled with Intrepid three times (central Europe, India, and most recently Turkey). I enjoy their small group size and the fact that the logistics are taken care of. Plus, you usually have a reasonable amount of free time. Accommodations are definitely not upscale, so if that's a consideration, you might want to look at another company. I personally have been very pleased with Intrepid and will likely go with them again.
althom1122 is offline  
Oct 10th, 2011, 06:25 AM
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@althom1122
thank you for your post. I have read the tour details and it said basic accomodation (2/3 stars), which is fine as long as the room/bed is clean, hot water etc it is fine. I'm not into luxury 4/5 star hotels.
son12345 is offline  
Oct 15th, 2011, 06:35 AM
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One thing I've really enjoyed about Intrepid is the kind of travelers they attract - very down-to-earth, fun-loving people who are open-minded and looking for an adventure. There are usually a preponderance of Ozzies; comfort trips attract older people, basic trips are a young crowd, and classic ones are usually a mix (that's what our Indian tour guide told us). I hope you have a great time - will be looking for a trip report!
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Oct 15th, 2011, 06:37 AM
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As for the accommodations, yes basic. Clean, USUALLY hot water, sometimes beds that sag a bit. But almost always in a fantastic location.
althom1122 is offline  
Nov 14th, 2011, 07:40 AM
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@althom1122

Thank you for your feedback on Intrepid! sounds like it was worth booking with them. I realise hot water may not always be available on all of the accomodation they select, but a clean and *resonably comfortable* bed/room is fine. I will post a report when I return should anyone want to book the same tour or similar but this wont be until sometime in May 2012

Thanks again and to all those you replied.
son12345 is offline  
Nov 14th, 2011, 09:19 AM
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I have just posted a request for reviews from anyone taking Sinorama tours to China. I have heard through two independent sources that their 21 day tour last month was great and that the accommodations were as good as 4-5 star, food was always good. As I am a woman traveling alone I think I'd prefer a tour this time but would still like to hear more input from others who have gone to China or Indo China on a tour.
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Nov 15th, 2011, 07:37 AM
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Mslizzy

That is great! thanks for posting and taking the time to ask other travellers for their feedback. So far so good Intrepid tours seem to be postive, well at least for Asia.
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