Essential China

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Essential China - G Adventures
Essential China - G Adventures
Tim "My family have just returned from our Essential China Tour. Our Guide Ricky Deng made this tour a most memorable experience. When we left the tour we realised how organised he was and the efforts he made to make our tour a smooth and relaxed adventures were truly appreciated. This was not the case when we travelled on our own. He made sure that the members of our group were placed with each other ..."
6 reviews
Hong Kong


Start in Beijing and end in Hong Kong! With the in-depth cultural tour Essential China, you have a 21 day tour package taking you from Beijing to Hong Kong and through Beijing, China and 8 other destinations in China. Essential China is a small group tour that includes accommodation in a hotel as well as an expert guide, meals, transport and more.
Age range
12 to 70 year olds
Hotel, Berth / Cabin, Monastery, Sleeper Train
Max Group Size
Train & Rail, Coach / Bus, Bicycle, Boat, Local Transport
Travel style
In-depth Cultural, Boat, Coach / Bus

6 Reviews

Rather Poor
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  • B
    Written on July 16, 2018
    3.0 - Average

    This was a very challenging trip physically. Yes, we went to some great sites and had some great times. The in-between travel was the hard bit, also travel distances take up a lot of time with not much to look at. I would give this a 4 star physical rating as you are required to carry luggage up & down multiple stories of stairs, walk some distance with it and carry it on/off crowded subways and public buses - this was not easy whether you have a suitcase or backpack, regardless of how it was described in their blurb, . G-Adventures can improve their transport arrangements, but can do nothing about the vastness between destinations. Also, there is not enough free time in certain places to get out and see much nor do optional extras as it took too long to get there and back in the free time allotted. Also, if you like visiting city after city, you may enjoy this more than I did - I was hoping for a more cultural experience. Overall, this would be the least enjoyable adventure I have been on. BTW - our guide was great, she did an excellent job within the bounds of the itinerary.
    G Adventures commented on this review
    Thanks for the constructive thoughts here. We will look into this.
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  • Essential China reviewer 2
    Written on April 17, 2018
    3.0 - Average

    The itineary was really good and we got to see all the essential highlights as per the name of the tour. However the transport was a disappointment. We spent a huge amount of time with rugsacks fighting our way through metro stations and over night trains. Im young and fit but even i at times felt i was completing a 3 wk endurance test:). I really felt sorry for some of the more mature people on our trip. It was tough going at times. Surely G could provide transfer busses as opposed to us all walking the streets to get to metros/hotels??
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  • DC
    Written on December 6, 2017
    4.0 - Good

    Overall this was a good trip. It is the third trip I have done with GAdventures and it is interesting to compare them. The first trip was very good with a very good guide. The second trip was also very good but in some cases the guide was less than helpful. In contrast on this trip the guide did everything he could to try to make the trip as good as possible. His efforts were excellent. However there were problems with the GAdventures itinerary, the information provided by Gadventures and GAdventures response to changes in the itinerary (I have already explained these in a detailed trip assessment to GAdventures). GAdventures could have responded better which would certainly have improved the trip.
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  • KL
    Written on October 27, 2017
    1.5 - Rather poor

    Very poor tour leader, with few included activities, felt like it had been done on the cheap
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  • NH
    Written on April 21, 2016
    4.0 - Good

    Another fantastic trip from G Adventure. Our guide, Bing, was great, family-friendly and nothing we too much trouble. We were kept busy but with enough free time to add our own touches to the trip and we saw everything that would be on your lust of things to do in this fabulous country O
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  • Essential China reviewer 6
    Written on August 4, 2012
    4.5 - Excellent

    My family have just returned from our Essential China Tour. Our Guide Ricky Deng made this tour a most memorable experience. When we left the tour we realised how organised he was and the efforts he made to make our tour a smooth and relaxed adventures were truly appreciated. This was not the case when we travelled on our own. He made sure that the members of our group were placed with each other on overnight sleeper trains in friendship groups which was not always easy when not all groups members could always be located together. He assisted me with my bags which were quite heavy and as an older group member with a wonky knee placed me in the sleeper trains on the bottom bunk sensitively noticing that this would make it easier to get into bed. Ricky also was active in group activities and kept with the lagging group members to ensure everyone returned safely on the Group HIke in the Mount Emei region. Those taking this tour should do so with an open mind. The tour takes you across China on a wide variety of transport, giving you an opportunity to see how the locals live. This includes basic toilet facilities and sometimes bedding and sleeping facilities however, under Ricky's leadership and with a great group of young people our 14 year old daughter and my husband and I would love to travel again with G adventures. Ricky was patient when he had to repeat information to tour members - many guides have loud speakers which sometimes make it hard to hear however because this is not something G adventures provides we noticed Riky's patience in this regard. Optional activities to the Acrobats in Shanghai, Kung Fu Show in Beijing and Opera in Chengdu enhance the trip and the tour information if followed make participation in the trip a pleasure. We loved the cycling on the Xian Wall - my daughter says she felt we were like the three main characters in Harry Potter travelling on their broomsticks - a truly great compliment. The walk on the Great Wall of China is also impressive - history back to 1404BC is not something readily found in Australia. The Terracotta Warriors and cycling around Yangshuo as well as the hiking in the Mount Emei region to see Tibetan Macques with great warm weather make this trip unforgettable. If you are expecting a five star experience this trip is not for you however if you want a truly memorable life changing adventure I would recommend this tour to anyone especially with Ricky Deng as the Guide!
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Download PDF Brochure
  1. Introduction
  2. Expand all
  1. Day 1 Beijing
  2. Day 2 Beijing
  3. Day 3 Beijing
  4. Day 4 Beijing/Shanghai
  5. Day 5 Shanghai
  6. Day 6 Shanghai/Xi'an
  7. Day 7 Xi'an
  8. Day 8 Xi'an
  9. Day 9 Xi'an/Emei Shan
  10. Day 10 Emei Shan
  11. Day 11 Emei Shan
  12. Day 12 Emei Shan
  13. Day 13 Emei Shan/Chengdu (1D)
  14. Days 14-15 Chengdu/Yangtze River
  15. Day 15 Yangtze River
  16. Day 16 Yangtze River
  17. Day 17 Yangtze River/Liuzhou
  18. Day 18 Liuzhou/Yangshuo
  19. Day 19 Yangshuo (1L)
  20. Day 20 Yangshuo/Hong Kong
  21. Day 21 Hong Kong

What's included

Expand all
  • Accommodation

    Rated Good by past passengers
  • Guide

    Rated Good by past passengers
  • Meals

    Rated Average by past passengers
  • Transport

    Rated Average by past passengers
  • Additional Services

  • Flights

  • Insurance

  • Additional Services

Download PDF Brochure


Why Travel With G Adventures?

Questions & Answers

Here we have collected and answered the most frequently asked questions about this tour.

    • Where and when does the tour end?

      The tour ends in Hong Kong, on Day 21 of the itinerary. There are no planned activities for this day so you're free to leave at any time, however we recommend extending your stay as there is so much to see!

    • When and where does the tour start?

      Day 1 of this tour is an arrivals day, so you can arrive in Beijing at any time, and spend the day settling into your accommodation and exploring the city. In the evening you will be greeted by your trip CEO at a welcome meeting, so you can get acquainted with your fellow travellers and go over the final trip details before the adventure commences! Please be aware that the meeting point is subject to change until your final documents are released.

    • Do you arrange airport transfers?

      Airport transfers are not included in the price of this tour, however you can pay for an arrival transfer in advance. In this case a tour operator representative will be at the airport to greet you. To arrange this please contact our travel experts once you have a confirmed booking.

    Ask a question

    What are people saying about TourRadar?

    • Hamish13th March 2018
      Super easy website to use. The filters are awesome & allowed me to find exactly what I was after. Specific features like filtering by exact date (+/- 3 days), desired price per day and type of experience. Will use Tour Radar again for booking a tour.



    Essential China

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    About the countries

    Useful things to know before you go


    Yuan Renminbi

    Plugs & Adapters



    Here is an indication for which countries you might need a visa. Please contact the local embassy for help applying for visas to these places.


    These are only indications, so please visit your doctor before you travel to be 100% sure.
    Recommended for China. Ideally 2 weeks before travel.
    Hepatitis A
    Recommended for China. Ideally 2 weeks before travel.
    Recommended for China. Ideally 2 weeks before travel.
    Recommended for China. Ideally 3 months before travel.
    Hepatitis B
    Recommended for China. Ideally 2 months before travel.
    Recommended for China. Ideally 1 month before travel.
    Yellow fever
    Certificate of vaccination required if arriving from an area with a risk of yellow fever transmission for China. Ideally 10 days before travel.
    Japanese B encephalitis
    Recommended for China. Ideally 1 month before travel.
    Tick-borne encephalitis
    Recommended for China. Ideally 6 months before travel.


    Beijing is the starting point and Hong Kong is the endpoint.
    Hold my space
    TourRadar can request G Adventures to hold spaces for you for up to 48 hours without any credit card details.
    TourRadar only requires a deposit of $250 to confirm this G Adventures booking. The remaining balance is then payable 65 days prior to the departure date. For any tour departing before 30 November 2018 the full payment of $2,610 is necessary.
    Cancellation policy
    No additional cancellation fees! You can cancel the tour up to 65 days prior to the departure date and you will not need to pay the full amount of $2610 for Essential China, but the deposit of $250 is non-refundable. But, the deposit is fully transferable to future bookings with G Adventures.
    Credit Cards
    The following cards are accepted for G Adventures tours: Visa - Master Card - American Express


    Covering a total distance of approx 4,539 km.
    • Beijing (China)
    • 1,066 km
    • Shanghai (China)
    • 1,219 km
    • Xian (China)
    • 614 km
    • Chengdu (China)
    • 117 km
    • Leshan (China)
    • 271 km
    • Chongqing (China)
    • 664 km
    • Yangshuo (China)
    • 59 km
    • Guilin (China)
    • 59 km
    • Yangshuo (China)
    • 471 km
    • Hong Kong (China)

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    No Cancellation Fee
    TourRadar does not charge any additional cancellation fees. You can cancel the tour up to 65 days prior to the departure date. As an added benefit though, you can use the deposit for future bookings with G Adventures.
    6 Genuine Reviews
    All reviews are verified from travellers who went on Essential China