Millions of people head to China each year on holidays, ready to explore all that the enormous country has to offer. From bustling cities to rural villages steeped in ancient Chinese culture, the country truly does have it all. Many visitors choose to join a tour group in order to have the best time possible exploring the nation. With a guide as your side, you can have valuable information about the destinations you visit, and an inside look at some of the best restaurants, historical landmarks and museums throughout the nation. Whatever you do, be sure not to miss these nine things to make your trip to China unforgettable:
1. See the Great Wall of China: Stretching over 8,000 kilometres in length, the Great Wall is accessible from many destinations in China, although your best bet is to join a tour leaving from Beijing. The most popular site of Badaling also boasts a free museum to learn more about the history of this incredible structure.
2. Tour the Forbidden City: In the heart of Beijing you will find the Imperial Court of the Ming and Qing dynasties, and a chance to feel as if you had stepped back in time. Tour the palaces, courtyards and temples in this amazing location.
3. Sunbathe in Hainan: Hainan Island is often called the “Hawaii of Asia” and boasts sunny shores and clear waters, along with unbeatable year round warm temperatures. Locals and travellers alike come here for the perfect beach holiday.
4. Admire the Terracotta Warriors: Just outside of the city of Xian you can admire the remarkable underground soldiers made from terracotta. Over 8,000 of these detailed sculptures form an army, along with horses and armoury.
5. Experience the 1920’s in Shanghai: The Bund district of Shanghai is the perfect place to experience what colonial life was like in the city in the 1920s. Classic Western architecture is beautifully preserved for a spectacular look at the heritage of this international city.
6. Make Traditional Dumplings: Trying authentic Chinese food should be on any itinerary of China, but why not make your own? Many tours give you the chance to make dumplings in the home of a local woman, learning the ancient art of providing carefully created food for your family.
7. Taste Unusual Cuisine: For a meal of unusual ingredients, head to the Donghuamen Night Market in Beijing. Vendors sell a wide range of odd traditional items, such as scorpions, seahorses or snakes.
8. Take a Trip: Consider taking a tour that heads to Hong Kong or Macau for a chance to see how modern and Westernized some parts of China can be. Experience these big cities just a few hours from the Chinese border, and ride on the scenic Star Ferry in Victoria Harbour or gamble in Macau.
9. See Potala Palace: If you plan for your tour to visit Tibet, and Lhasa in particular, then you can’t miss the most iconic and significant destination of all, the beautiful Potala Palace, nestled at the base of the Himalayan Mountains.