More time in Beijing or trip to Xian?

Old Nov 7th, 2016, 07:23 PM
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More time in Beijing or trip to Xian?

Have 10 days and want to visit Beijing and Shanghai. Not sure if we should include Xian? Muslim quarter appeals to me and the terracotta warriors seem ok but I wouldnt mind missing them. Is Xian worth the 5 hour train ride or is it better just to stay in Beijing and see more there? Seems like we will need at least 5 days to see Beijing and not feel rushed. Also, how many days would you recommend we spend in Shanghai? It seems like there is more to do in Beijing. We aren't big museum people we may go to 1 in 10 days. We like the open air markets, street food, sights, and temples. Will definitely go to Great Wall and possibly Tanzhe temple? Any guidance is much appreciated!
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Old Nov 7th, 2016, 08:25 PM
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For my interests, I thought 7.5 full days barely enough for a first visit to Beijing, and 3 full days about right for Xi'an -- and I travel HARD.

Do you think you will return to China? If so, Beijing is easier to reach, so might be the place to "shortchange."

You might find some useful information in my trip report -- it's long, but searchable. You can find it by clicking on my screen name and then scrolling down until you reach the section on trip reports.
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Old Nov 8th, 2016, 01:30 PM
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I have been to all three cities, and I found Xi'An and Beijing both much more interesting than Shanghai, hands down. Do you already have your plane tickets such that you are committed to Shanghai, or can you go to Beijing and Xi'An instead? I agree with kja that all three cities in ten days is way too much.

When I began planning our trip, I felt the same way you did about Xi'An, "What could there possibly be there besides those warriors?" Well, there is plenty. Xi'An was an ancient capital, and it takes two full days to see it, and then we had an additional day to climb Huashan. What's more, the food is delicious, as it's an interesting mix of Muslim and Chinese. We flew between the cities in the evening, which takes two hours.

In Shanghai, we walked around the Bund, went to the circus, had massages, went to the main museum, went to the gardens, saw some synagogues, and took a day trip to Suzhou. If you're a history buff, you'll like Xi'An and Beijing better.
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Old Nov 8th, 2016, 02:38 PM
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Everybody's travel style is different. Depending on the time of the year and how in-depth you want to go, you can cover Beijing easily in 4-5 days. Based on your preference, you won't want to spend much time in Shanghai but it's worth a couple of days. This leaves you time for Xi'An. Xi'An is a lot more than the Warriors. If you plan well, you can cover it in 2 full days, three if you also want to go to Huashan.
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Old Nov 9th, 2016, 12:28 AM
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I agree with CaliforniaLady that Beijing and Xi'an are more interesting than Shanghai, especially if you don't care about the museum - unless you are a big fan of modern architecture. There is plenty to see in Xi'an besides the warriors.
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