China

  • China school trip
    A school trip to China represents a life-changing experience for both students and teachers alike.
  • China school trip
    See the Terracotta Warriors on a visit to Xi'an.
  • China school trip
    The Giant Panda Breeding Centre makes for a memorable excursion on a school trip to China.
  • China school trip
    Walk a section of the Great Wall on a China school trip.
  • economics / business studies school trip to China
    See Shanghai's skyscrapers on a business studies school trip to China.

The experience of a lifetime for students and staff. They (and we) will never forget it, and for some students it will genuinely be a life-changing experience. DW, Lytchett Minster School

With a surface area of over 9.6 million square kilometres, over 1.35 billion inhabitants, 5,000 years of uninterrupted civilisation and seven major language groups, China is a country where diversity, like the spectacular land itself, is epic in scale.

Whether you opt to take in the historical and political might of Beijng or the fast-paced buzz of Shanghai, we can design a bespoke itinerary that showcases China’s economic and commercial acumen in the global arena, all the while paying homage to the country’s rich heritage. Alternatively, you might prefer more of a geographical angle, getting up close to giant pandas, cruising the Yangtze River or walking a section of the Great Wall.

Whatever your preference, combine China’s legendary treasures into one mesmerising, magical itinerary and you’re guaranteed to give your pupils the ultimate educational adventure of a lifetime.

All tours are tailor-made to suit each individual group with a couple of suggested options shown below. Other visits and destinations can easily be combined, please contact us to discuss your ideas.

Typical Accommodation

A variety of 3* hotels are used in all cities, all of which offer a high standard of accommodation, in twin-bedded rooms with private facilities, air conditioning and TV. Lunches and dinners will be taken in local restaurants.

Please contact us for further information about the facilities and location of all available accommodation and we will be happy to advise you on the best hotel to suit your group.

China School Trip – Subject Suitability

Travel Options

  • By air from London direct to Beijing, Shanghai or Chengdu.

Flight time from London is approximately 9.5 hours to Beijing or 11 hours to Shanghai with daily flights operated by BA or Air China.

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China School Trip Sample Itinerary – 8 Days to Beijing & Xi’an

Day 1 – Overnight flight to Beijing.

Day 2 – On arrival at Beijing Airport, you will be met by a guide and transferred by coach to your hotel for a two-night stay, with all meals included.

Day 3 – A full-day guided tour of the Great Wall of China along one of the best walking sections in Badaling, situated 70km from Beijing. The centuries-old wall at Badaling offers sensational views of the structure itself and the surrounding countryside.

Afterwards, visit the Ming Tombs, the burial place of thirteen emperors from the Ming Dynasty. Lunch will be taken in a local restaurant before returning to Beijing for dinner in a local restaurant and overnight accommodation in your hotel.

Day 4 – A full-day sightseeing tour of Beijing, including Tiananmen Square, which at 100 acres, is the world’s largest public square and leads to the Forbidden City, formerly the Imperial Palace, with hundreds of buildings and thousands of rooms, some of which are now museums, housing imperial collections.

This will be followed by a visit to the Temple of Heaven, where Ming and Qing Dynasty emperors worshipped. The sacrificial altar is widely believed to be the most beautiful creation in China. After dinner, transfer to Beijing Station for the overnight sleeper train to Xi’an, a city dating back to 6,000 BC.

Day 5 – Arrive Xi’an and transfer to your hotel. After breakfast, there will be a guided sightseeing tour of Xi’an, which will include the Big Wild Goose Pagoda, built during the Tang Dynasty (AD618-907) and housing great treasures including ancient murals depicting the journey of Xuanzang.

You’ll also visit the Bell Tower, built during the Ming Dynasty and now the symbol of Xi’an from which panoramic views of the city can be gained from its parapet. Lunch and dinner will be taken in local restaurants today.

Day 6 – A full-day excursion to visit the Terracotta Army Museum, one of the most significant archaeological excavations of the 20th century. Here, just outside Xi’an, this remarkable UNESCO World Heritage Site was where, just over 30 years ago, 8,000 life-size terracotta warriors and horses were uncovered from the area around Emperor Qin Sin Huang Di’s vast tombs.

Afterwards, pay a visit to Xi’an City Walls before transferring to the train station for the return overnight sleeper train journey to Beijing.

Day 7 – On arrival in Beijing, enjoy breakfast followed by a guided tour of the 800-year-old Summer Palace, a masterpiece of Chinese landscape garden design culminating in a glorious 716-acre lakeside sanctuary, formerly enjoyed by the Qing dynasty royals. In the afternoon, visit the famous shopping street, Wangfujing.

Day 8 – After breakfast, transfer by coach to Beijing International Airport for your return flight to London, arriving in the evening.

China School Trip Sample Itinerary – 8 Days to Shanghai & Chengdu

Day 1 – Overnight flight to Shanghai.

Day 2 – On arrival at Shanghai Airport, you will be met by a local English-speaking guide and taken on an introductory tour of the city, renowned as the most influential economic, financial, international trade, cultural, science and technology centre in eastern China. The rest of the day is free to relax after your journey.

Day 3 – Today you’ll discover more of Shanghai old and new with visits to the Bund, the high-rise Pudong district and the Lujiazui Finance and Trade Zone, often referred to as the Wall Street of China. As well as the distinctive Oriental Pearl TV Tower, the tallest TV tower in Asia, you’ll also get to see the narrow streets of the Puxi district, Shanghai’s historic and cultural centre, situated on the opposite bank of the Huangpu River.

There’s also the opportunity for students to attend a lecture at Shanghai University today on the Chinese economy, in addition to a tour of the campus.

Day 4 – Departing early this morning, journey west aboard high-speed train from Shanghai to the centre of China and Yichang, set on the Yangtze River and famous as the largest hydroelectric base worldwide. Arriving this afternoon (journey time is approx. eight hours), transfer to your hotel for dinner and overnight accommodation.

Day 5 – Join a cruise along the Yangtze River this morning, passing through the Gezhouba Lock and seeing the longest of the Three Gorges Corridor, the Xiling Gorge. Disembarking, you’ll visit the famous dam, as well as some of the biggest locks, before returning to Yichang later today.

Day 6 – A drive this morning to the city of Jingzhou, set on the banks of the Yangtze. Here, you’ll visit the beautifully-preserved ancient city, divided into three parts: the Water City, Brick City and Earth City, as well as remains of the six city gates and other historic and cultural relics.

Afterwards, you’ll reboard the high-speed train for a seven-hour journey west across China to Chengdu, capital of the Sichuan State. On arrival, transfer to your hotel for dinner and overnight accommodation.

Day 7 – This morning is sure to be an unforgettable experience as you pay a visit to the Giant Panda Breeding Centre in Chengdu. Here you’ll see both giant pandas and lesser pandas living and breeding in a carefully recreated natural habitat, alongside other rare and endangered species including black-necked cranes and white storks.

There’s also an opportunity to visit the Giant Panda Museum, the world’s only thematic museum for rare and endangered animal species.

After a memorable morning, you’ll visit historic Kuan Zhai Alley, actually comprised of three alleys called Kuan Alley (Wide Alley), Zhai Alley (Narrow Alley), and Jing Alley, in addition to Jinli Old Street, Chengdu’s oldest and most atmospheric shopping thoroughfare.

Day 8 – After breakfast, transfer by coach to Chengdu Airport for your return flight back to the UK.

Popular Visits & Excursions

Beijing

Great Wall of China – Constructed over a period of centuries, the Great Wall of China is 6,700km long and was built as a defence against invasions from the north. One of the best and most popular sections is to be found at Badaling, 70km northwest of Beijing.
Ming Tombs – Set at the foot of the Tianshou Mountain northwest of Beijing, you’ll find a series of mausoleums to 13 emperors of the Ming Dynasty.
Tiananmen Square – A world-renowned square where Mao Tse-tung declared the foundation of the People’s Republic of China in October 1st 1949, and where a lone protester defied advancing tanks in 1989 during the Tianenmen Square Massacre.
The Forbidden City – Formerly the Imperial Palace, now a museum of the Ming and Qin dynasties and a reminder of China’s all powerful empire.
Temple of Heaven – A 15th-century complex of Taoist temples set within Beijing’s largest imperial park just south of Tianenmen Square.
Summer Palace – Used as a royal summer retreat and an official royal residence of the Qing dynasty, this vast UNESCO World Heritage Site is a masterpiece of Chinese landscape garden design.
Wangfujing – Beijing’s main shopping thoroughfare, one mile long and mostly pedestrianised. You’ll find the National Art Museum of China (NAMOC) situated on the corner of Wangfujing and Wusi Streets.
Hutongs – Meaning old lanes or alleyways, a tour of Beijing’s hutongs gives a glimpse into the Beijing of yesteryear and a more traditional way of living.
National Stadium – Also affectionately known as the Bird’s Nest, this was the principal stadium for the 2008 Beijing Olympic Games. It will also be the venue of the opening and closing ceremonies in the 2022 Winter Olympic Games.
Beijing Zoo – Plays host to around 450 different species and a population of some 5,000 animals including giant pandas, golden monkeys, milu deer and northeast tigers. There’s also quite an array of animals originating from outside China, too.

Xi’an

Terracotta Army Museum – A stunning UNESCO World Heritage Site where a limestone army of warhorses and warriors were painstakingly created to watch over Emperor Qin Shi Huang Di in the afterlife, undiscovered until 1974.
Big Wild Goose Pagoda – A five-storey pagoda built in 648 AD, by the man who was the inspiration for the classic Chinese animated tale of the monkey king, Sun Wukong.
Bell Tower – Marking the geographical centre of the ancient capital of Xi’an, this wooden tower is the largest and best preserved of its kind in China. Built in 1384, the bell was sounded as to warn against impending attack.
Xi’an City Walls – The most complete city wall to remain in China, this was one of the largest ancient military defensive systems in the world, standing 12 metres tall and 12-14 metres wide (15-18 metres at the bottom).

 

Shanghai

Puxi District – Situated on the western side of the Huangou, Puxi is Shanghai’s historic and cultural centre, with a wide mix of architectural styles and is perhaps most famous for its waterfront Bund and Nanjing Road.
The Bund – Regarded as the symbol of Shanghai, this popular area runs along the western bank of the Huangou River overlooking the skyscrapers of the Pudong district across the water.
Nanjing Road – Shanghai’s most renowned shopping thoroughfare running some 3.4 miles from the Bund to Jing’an Temple, Nanjing Road features all the main international brands in addition to more traditional and speciality shops.
Jing’an Temple – One of Shanghai’s most famous temples, its history dates back nearly 800 years when it was built during the Three Kingdoms period.
Pudong District – Set on the eastern bank of the Huangou River, the Pudong represents the heart of Shanghai’s commercial, financial and economic nerve centre. You’ll find the Shanghai Stock Exchange, Lujiazui Finance and Trade Zone and the city’s tallest buildings all situated here.
Oriental Pearl TV Tower – Perhaps the most distinctive of all the high-rise buildings in Pudong, the iconic TV Tower boasts shops, restaurants, a hotel and even a futuristic space city. On a clear day, views can reach as far as the Yangtze River.

Yichang

Xiling Gorge – The longest of the three gorges along the Yangtze River, Xiling Gorge is renowned for its spectacular scenery.
Three Gorges Dam Project – Located within the Xiling Gorge, this hydroelectric dam has been lauded as the world’s largest power station and most effective dam in controlling flood waters.
Jingzhou – Set on the banks of the Yangtze and birthplace of Chu culture, Jingzhou is best known for its ancient city. Its history dates back over 2,000 and is considered one of the most important historical and cultural centres in China.

Chengdu

Giant Panda Breeding Centre – An opportunity to observe giant pandas in their (recreated) natural habitat and learn about the efforts involved in conserving this much-loved breed. You’ll also get to see many other endangered wildlife including red pandas, swans, peacocks, birds and  butterflies.
Kuan Zhai Alley – Actually three ancient alleyways comprising Wide Alley (Kuan Xiangzi), Narrow Alley (Zhai Xiangzi) and Well Alley (Jing Xiangzi), in addition to 45 courtyards situated amongst them. Wide and Narrow Alley represent one of Chengdu’s most important historical and cultural areas, today housing shops, restaurants and hotels.
Jinli Old Street – Once one of the busiest commercial streets during the Shu Kingdom, this atmospheric street is lined with stalls selling traditional crafts and curios.