This 8-day luxury itinerary introduces you to the delights of Sichuan Province, home to the famous Chengdu Panda Base, Huanglong Scenic Area and the remarkable Jiuzhaigou Valley. On this trip, you'll see important religious landmarks such as the towering Leshan Giant Buddha and Mount Emei, one of the Four Sacred Buddhist Mountains of China. You’ll also get plenty of free time in Chengdu to see the sights and sample authentic spicy Sichuan cuisine.
You'll arrive in Chengdu on your first day, where you’ll be greeted at the airport by a guide who will transfer you to your hotel. In Chengdu, we recommend staying in either the luxurious Ritz-Carlton or The Temple House, both of which offer world-class service and all modern amenities. Your afternoon and evening are free to spend at your leisure.
Today you'll visit the city's most famous attraction – the Chengdu Panda Base. This research and breeding facility is set in lush green countryside similar to the panda's natural habitat. Here, you can see panda adults and babies at play in their gardens and have your picture taken with a baby panda. Next, you'll visit Sanxingdui Museum, a vast indoor and outdoor museum with bronze, gold and copper artifacts from the Sanxingdui Kingdom (1,600 BCE). Return to your luxury hotel in Chengdu tonight.
Fly to Jiuzhaigou today, a journey of just an hour, to see the famous sights of Jiuzhaigou Valley. You'll start your exploration of this area with a half-day tour of UNESCO World Heritage Site Huanglong, noted for the bright blue pools and yellow calcite deposits of Yellow Dragon Gully. Tonight, you'll check into the Jiuzhaigou Grand Hotel.
You'll spend today inside Jiuzhaigou Valley Scenic Area, where you can hike or take a bus around a circuit of spectacular natural attractions. The fairytale landscapes here stretch across roughly 72,000 hectares and house old-growth forests, gem-colored lakes, limestone cliffs, alpine mountains and endangered animal species. After exploring the park, you'll return to your hotel in Jiuzhaigou Valley.
Fly back to Chengdu today and explore its historic sites. You'll first visit the famed Thatched Cottage of Du Fu – a Tang Dynasty poet – situated within a picturesque park on the outskirts of the city. Next, enjoy more Chinese history with a visit to Jinli Street, a long cobblestone road lined with perfectly-preserved architecture from the Qing Dynasty, strung with rows of red lanterns. Tonight you have the option to attend a Sichuan Opera performance in Chengdu before returning to your hotel.
Visit another famous Sichuan site today – the Giant Buddha of Leshan, around 90 minutes' drive away. The tribute is by far the largest statue from pre-modern times. This stone statue is carved into the side of Mt Leshan, measures 233 feet tall, and dates back to the Tang Dynasty. You can climb to the summit – a challenging hike of around two hours - or enjoy views of the statue from the river. You'll return to your hotel in Chengdu in the afternoon, with the evening at your leisure.
Today, visit another important Buddhist site – Mount Emei. Here, you'll take a cable car to the Golden Summit, a picturesque locale that houses the first Buddhist temple built in China. Various temples, pavilions, shrines and statues can be found in the ancient pine forests here. Check in to the luxury Anantara Emei hotel in the evening for free time on the last night of your journey.
After a delicious gourmet breakfast at your hotel, you’ll be chauffeur-driven to Chengdu airport today in time for your departure flight.
Within walking distance from the popular Jiuzhaigou National Park, Jiuzhaigou Grand Hotel offers a simple and comfortable stay for people travelling through this part of China. Nothing too over-the-top here-- staff are friendly, rooms are cozy with comfortable beds, and buffet breakfasts are included at very reasonable rates. It is one of three hotels in this area that have WiFi services available and credit card facilities at the reception desk, restaurant and on-site convenience shop. If language becomes a barrier, the staff are very quick to find someone who will be able to translate for your convenience. The decor and layout of the rooms are tasteful, with twin beds for double occupancy and clean bathrooms, which are supplied with shampoo, bath towels and soap. This is a simple, comfortable place for a good night’s sleep.
The Ritz-Carlton, Chengdu, situated in the center of the capital of Sichuan province, is a strong new contender in Southwest China’s luxury hotel market. The hotel is located in Tianfu Square, one of the city’s main commercial districts. The Ritz-Carlton has 353 well-appointed suites designed in the style of a traditional Chengdu courtyard home, some of which can still be found in the old parts of the city. The room interiors combine light woods and a palette of cool blue and golden colors intended to subtly reflect the city’s heritage in a modern context. The hotel’s facilities include an indoor swimming pool, fitness center, spa, ballrooms and meeting rooms. There are three restaurants to choose from, serving refined Cantonese cuisine and other international specialties, as well as a lobby lounge where guests can enjoy a sweet treat with their afternoon tea.
Blending the traditional with the modern just like the city it stands in, The Temple House is a masterclass in elegant design. Guests enter through the lovingly-restored courtyard, dating back to the Qing dynasty, and the historic style is integrated into many of the building’s features. The hotel’s service, though, is slick and up to date, with paperless systems ensuring an effortless check-in so guests may relax in their elegant room, apartment or suite in no time. From local and international cuisine to tea and cocktails, the dining options are comprehensive and delicious, and with a spa, indoor pool, steam and sauna facilities and a state-of-the-art gym on site, every whim is taken care of.
The first international hotel of its kind in stunning Emei, southwest China, The Anantara Emei welcomes visitors with unrivalled hospitality. Located at the foot of the dramatic Emei mountain - a sacred destination for Buddhist pilgrims, guests are sure to be wowed by the scenery. Set amidst countryside deemed a UNESCO World Heritage Site, the hotel enjoys 360-degree panoramas of beautiful Chinese landscape. This peaceful retreat boasts a range of accommodation options including rooms with garden and lake views as well as suites with private jacuzzis, all equipped with the latest mod cons to ensure maximum comfort. Foodies can indulge in traditional Chinese and pan-Asian cuisine at the hotel’s two restaurants or lounge with elegant drinks at the cocktail bar or on the poolside terrace. Guests not wishing to venture into nature can relax and unwind with the range of modern and traditional treatments available at the hotel spa. Alternatively, the lakeside pool is the perfect spot for a refreshing dip with a stunning view.