Upon arrival in Beijing you are met and transferred to a hotel near the famous Tiananmen Square.
Meet your guide in the morning for a comprehensive tour of the Chinese capital. You will learn about the country’s ancient history while walking through the city’s palaces and courtyards, as well as its more recent history through visiting Tiananmen Square and the National Museum. The tour will take you to the Forbidden City – a place where for centuries only emperors were allowed. You will see the Summer Palace of the last Chinese Empress and have a lunch of traditional Chinese cuisine in a quaint restaurant.
Today you take a trip to the extraordinary 4,000-mile long Great Wall of China. You will walk along the top of this magnificent structure that has withstood wars and natural disasters. You will also drive to the Ming Tombs – the impressive mausoleums built to house the lavish treasures that the emperors buried here took with them into the afterlife.
Take a morning flight to the ancient city of Xi’an in Western China. A city tour will take you to the magnificent Big Goose Pagoda, built to store the manuscripts collected by Buddhist monk Xuan Zang on his famous pilgrimage. Visit the City Wall dating back to the Ming Dynasty, and the forest of Stone Steles Museum. In the evening, enjoy a dinner accompanied by a Tang Dynasty (618-907 AD) song and dance show.
Today you will take a trip to the amazing Terra Cotta Warriors. Excavations at the site continue to this day, and so far more than 6,000 terra cotta clay soldiers, armed and dressed in uniform, have been unearthed surrounding the tomb of the first Chinese Emperor Qin Shihuangdi. After a visit to the Shaanxi Provincial Museum fly back to Beijing and overnight at a hotel.
Enjoy the changing views of the Chinese and Mongolian countryside as you take the 30-hour train ride from Beijing to the Mongolian capital city of Ulaanbaatar. The train takes you across the Great Wall at Badaling Pass, and through the vast expanse of the Gobi Desert where you may have a rare chance to see nomadic herders on horseback moving their flocks of sheep.
Arrive in Ulaanbaatar in the afternoon and transfer to the hotel. Enjoy a dinner and a folklore performance in the evening.
Take a morning excursion to Gandan Monastery where you will see Buddhist monks in their morning prayers. Continue sightseeing with a visit to the Bogd Khan Winter Palace and the National History Museum.
You will take a flight to a camp in the Gobi Desert this morning. Upon arrival, settle into your ger (traditional felt dwelling) and enjoy a quick lunch before you start exploring the area. Take an afternoon ride to Eagle Valley and visit a local museum.
Today you will drive to Bayanzag (Flaming Cliffs) where the world’s best-preserved dinosaur fossils were found, including a nest of eggs. Enjoy the changing landscape of this unusual desert as you drive to the Hongorin Els sand dunes. An opportunity to count the huge stars in the endless skies is provided free of charge as you settle into a ger camp for overnight.
After breakfast you will take a short flight back to Ulaanbaatar. Your tour will end with a visit to the Natural History Museum, where some of the dinosaur fossils from the Gobi Desert are on display alongside many other fascinating exhibits. You will have an opportunity to do some souvenir shopping this afternoon.
Say good-bye to slow-paced life in this nomadic nation as you are transferred for your flight home.