China itinerary with teenage boys

Old Mar 12th, 2007, 05:59 AM
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China itinerary with teenage boys

We're making our first family trip to China in August (no choice because of school schedules) with our 2 sons, ages 17 and 19. I'm trying to create an itinerary that all of us will enjoy. We have a max of 21 days including air travel. We've done Australia, Africa, and the Galapagos with them and they loved it. The question is which places would be our best choices? We have too many on our list to do them all in 21 days--Beijing, Luoyang, Xi'an, Hangzhou, Suzhou, Shanghai, Huangshan, Guilin, Yangshuo, Lijiang, Chengdu, Hong Kong. What would you eliminate?

Thanks for your input.
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Old Mar 12th, 2007, 07:30 PM
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beijing, shanghai, xian and hong kong would be my immediate choices...
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Old Mar 13th, 2007, 03:12 AM
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Thanks.

Interesting that China Highlights, who put together an initial itinerary of 26 days, cut out Shanghai, Suzhou, and Huangshan when I asked them to cut back to 21 days.
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Old Mar 14th, 2007, 09:09 PM
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It depends what you want to get out from this trip. Shanghai could be very interesting if you and your boys want to see some interesting mix of modern and traditional Chinese architecture, etc. You can check out my blog at http://travel.chinafinds.com for some more ideas
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Old Mar 15th, 2007, 05:13 PM
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what are you interested? Beijing-Xi`an- Guilin-Yunan-Chengdu Lhasa -Shanghai.if you are interested to history.skip Lhasa,go to Zhenghzhou,Luoyang and Kaifeng.
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Old Mar 15th, 2007, 06:03 PM
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travelchinaguide put together an interesting 16 night itinerary:

Beijing-3 nights
Xi'an-3 nights
Luoyang-1 night
Shanghai-1 night
Huangshan-2 nights
Hangzhou-2 nights
Guilin-2 nights
Hong Kong-2 nights

We can't go more than 16 nights but I'm wondering whether I should trade off Luoyang or Huangshan for Lijiang/Dali. I'd also love to see the sound and light show in Yangshuo. Tough choices!
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Old Mar 15th, 2007, 07:25 PM
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sbtrooper: I don't like this last itinerary if only because it reminds me of the old movie: "If it's Tuesday, this must be Belgium". Too rushed, too many destinations and not one day for a "breather day".

If it were my choice, I'd cut out Luoyang (unless you're interested in Buddhism) and Huangshan (a bit too "remote" and therefore too much time spent travelling).

That leaves you Beijing, Xian, Shanghai, Hangzhou, Guilin, Hong Kong.

Good luck on your plans!
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Old Apr 5th, 2007, 09:17 AM
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Hi, if the boys like adventure stuff, plan to spend more time in Yangshuo. There's some of the best sport climbing in the world with certified expert guides, bamboo rafting on the rivers, caving, hill hiking, mountain bike riding, and other cool stuff. Try the Yangshuo Mountain Retreat. Families who stay there rave about this place.
Cheers,
BK
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Old Apr 5th, 2007, 10:48 AM
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Our two families are traveling with 4 boys, ages 10, 12, 15 and 15. We have already been to Hong Kong. We will spend 4 nights in Beijing, 3 nights in Xian, 4 nights in Guilin/Yangshuo, 2 nights in Hangzhou, 1 night in Xitang, and 3 nights in Shanghai. We plan to visit Suzhou as a day trip from Shanghai.

Keep us posted on your plans!
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Old Apr 5th, 2007, 06:23 PM
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Thanks to everyone for their great input. At this point we've refined things down to a 19 day, 17 night trip as follows:

Beijing--3 nights (including 3 hour Jinshanling to Simitai Great Wall hike, if I survive it)
Xian--3 nights
Jiuzhaigou--2 nights
Chengdu--1 night
Yangshuo--2 nights (with bamboo rafting and biking)
Hong Kong--2 nights
Hangzhou--2 nights
Shanghai--2 nights (with 1 day side trip to Xitang)
And then back to Beijing for our return flight home.

We're doing round trip to Beijing from Boston because of a $2,700 per person business class fare from Continental that was far less than any other option.

I suggested Yangshuo Mountain Retreat to the tour company but they are encouraging us to stay at Paradesa Yangshuo because of feedback they say they have gotten.
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Old Apr 6th, 2007, 12:17 AM
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Some recent opinion on Hotel Paradesa...(formerly Paradise Hotel)
http://www.virtualtourist.com/hotels...gshuo-R-1.html
It looks like it has seen better days...
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Old Apr 8th, 2007, 04:51 AM
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Does anyone feel that Dali/Lijiang or just Lijiang via Kunming would be a better choice on our itinerary than Chengdu/Jiuzhaigou? I have some concerns because of the stories I've heard about altitude sickness. I think we would need 4 days for Dali/Lijiang or Kunming/Lijiang if we go that route so I might have to cut a day somewhere else.
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Old Apr 8th, 2007, 10:44 AM
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We just returned from China. Staying in Xian for 3 nights might be too long. We were in Xian for two nights and covered all the main sights in a day and a half (terra cotta warriors, bell and drum tower, llama temple, hot springs, the tombs, muslim quarters, bike ride on the wall). The center of the city is very polluted so we just wanted to get out. Conversely, staying in Chengdu for only one night might be too short. In addition to the panda reserve, there is a neat museum and dig site about 40 minutes away that has ancient relics which your boys may enjoy - called Sanxinduay (not sure if spelling is correct).
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