Note: The itineraries presented are subject to modification due to water levels, closures because of public holidays or other uncontrollable factors. Every effort will be made to operate programs as planned, but changes may still be necessary throughout the cruise. This day-to-day schedule is subject to change. Your final day-to-day schedule will be provided onboard on the first day of your cruise.
Day 1: Beijing
Arrive at the Beijing Airport. If your cruise/tour package includes a group arrival transfer or if you have purchased a private arrival transfer, you will be greeted by a Uniworld representative and transferred to the opulent Ritz-Carlton Beijing. This stunning hotel is located in the heart of the city, where modernity, exemplary service and rich Chinese tradition seamlessly blend together.
Day 2: Beijing
The political and cultural capital of China and home to more than 20 million people, Beijing exemplifies everything visitors find most intoxicating about China. Spectacular ancient monuments contrast with ambitious modern high-rises, and traditional crafts flourish alongside booming international businesses—which you’ll discover today.
The imperial heritage of China’s capital – Tiananmen Square, the Forbidden City and Peking Duck lunch with afternoon Temple of Heaven visit and Tai Chi class
Day 3: Beijing
Today is a bucket list kind of day, as you stand at last atop China’s most iconic site—the Great Wall. You’ll also have tea at a traditional teahouse and take a rickshaw ride through the city’s ancient hutongs, where you’ll enjoy lunch.
Culture, history and intrigue: hutongs, teahouse and the Great Wall
Day 4: Beijing, Fly to Xi’an
Leave dynamic Beijing behind today and head north to the lush lakeside Summer Palace, home to one of China’s most beautiful classical gardens. From there, plunge into the past in China’s first capital, where you’ll celebrate your first night in Xi’an with a traditional dumpling banquet.
Grace and art—Beijing’s Summer Palace and Xi’an’s traditional dumpling banquet
Day 5: Xi’an
Xi’an’s Terracotta Army has been called the 8th Wonder of the World, and it’s certainly the most extraordinary archeological find of the 20th century. You’ll also enjoy a traditional Tang Dynasty dinner show with fabulous food, music and vibrant costumes.
China’s first capital—Terra-cotta Army and Tang Dynasty dinner show
Day 6: Xi’an, Fly to Lhasa
Today you’ll fly to Lhasa, the ancient cultural and religious epicenter of Tibet, where the majestic Himalayan peaks will make you feel like you’re on top of the world—figuratively and literally—in the world’s highest capital city.
Day 7: Lhasa
Enter the hushed inner sanctum of the spiritual heart of the city, the Jokhang Temple, where you will have a rare opportunity to gaze upon the most sacred icon of Tibetan Buddhism—an ancient statue of the Buddha that legions of devout pilgrims journey vast distances to see in person.
Otherworldly Jokhang Temple and Tibet Museum
Day 8: Lhasa
The enormous hilltop Potala Palace is the first thing visitors see in Lhasa, and today you’ll have a chance to venture inside this vast and well-preserved site. It is said to contain a thousand rooms, including the private rooms where the Dalai Lama himself once resided.
Place of the Gods—Potala Palace and Sera Monastery
Day 9: Lhasa, Fly to Chongqing (Embark), Cruising the Yangtze River
Check out of your hotel and fly to Chongqing, the booming capital of western China, where you’ll board the Sanctuary Yangzi Explorer.
Day 10: Cruising the Yangtze River, Shibaozhai
Near Fuling, you’ll be offered the extraordinary chance to visit the 816 Underground Project, a giant nuclear installation, which the military started constructing in the mountains in the 1960s. It boasts 18 man-made caves, more than 130 roads and tunnels, and an almost 80-meter-high cave where the nuclear reactor was placed. The project was abandoned in a nearly finished state in 1984 before the manufacturing of plutonium-239 began.
Fuling—816 Underground Project
Day 11: Cruising the Yangtze River, Shennong Stream
Today will be a highlight of your journey—a full day cruising the Yangtze River’s mystical, beautiful and completely mesmerizing Three Gorges and Shennong Stream.
The magical Shennong Stream
Day 12: Cruising the Yangtze River, Yichang (Disembark), Fly to Shanghai
The Three Gorges Dam was a project that involved relocating villages and submerged a number of cultural treasures behind the rising waters of the Yangtze. The dam itself is an engineering marvel you can see from an up-close perspective today.
Powering China’s future—Three Gorges Dam
Day 13: Shanghai
An international economic hub, Shanghai has drawn entrepreneurs from all over the world for 150 years. But while Shanghai may be the “city of the future,” you can still find remnants of its history in Old Town and the area known as the Concessions, which you’ll discover today.
Spectacular skyscrapers, famous dim sum and acrobats
Day 14: Depart Shanghai
Check out of your hotel and transfer to the Shanghai Pudong International Airport for your flight home, or extend your trip with a memorable optional extension to Hong Kong.