Explore the delights of the Yangtze River with our luxury four-day boat cruise down this special waterway in central China. At nearly 4,000 miles long, this river is the longest in Asia and the third-longest in the world. The river is the lifeblood of many Chinese who live near its banks and live their lives by its bounty. Enjoy the stunning landscapes and Chinese life along the waterway as you visit Chongqing, the Ghost City of Fengdu, Qutang Gorge, Shennong Stream, Wu Gorge and Xiling Gorge. Learn an ancient Chinese board game and experience life as the residents do by visiting a local school. Finally, you’ll get to visit the Three Gorges Dam - the spectacular highlight of this wonderful trip.
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Arrive in Chongqing, one of the fastest-growing urban centers in the world, and begin your Yangtze River cruise. After settling into your luxurious suite, the ship will head downstream along this spectacular cliff-lined river, through the Three Gorges region. The total length of this wonderful trip is 402 miles and is considered by most Chinese people to represent the single most scenic area in all of China. Once you’re relaxed on board, it’s time to take in the beautiful scenic sights. In the evening you’ll enjoy an informative documentary screening about the Three Gorges Dam Project, the world’s largest hydroelectric power station, which will be shown in the Tang Theater. Enjoy your first sleep on board this magical voyage and breathe in all the sights and sounds of amazing China.
Start your day with traditional Chinese exercise and work up an appetite for a buffet breakfast, or have it privately in-suite. After you’ve eaten, enjoy a short trip to Fengdu, where you’ll visit the Ghost City and discover the many famous ghost statues and learn about the local superstitions and rituals regarding the afterlife. Experience local life at a kindergarten, or take part in the senior exercise regime at the park. After lunch, choose among lectures and discussions, a Chinese medicine demonstration, a special Aromasoul Dream Spa treatment (advanced booking required), or an arts and crafts demonstration. Don't know how to play mahjong? Learn the tricks of this popular Chinese tile game here. After a complimentary afternoon tea, you’ll get a special welcome from the captain, who’ll be delighted to have you on board. Finally, relax the evening away after a private gourmet dinner in your suite and a crew show performance that’s guaranteed to entertain.
In the early hours of the morning, the ship will enter Qutang Gorge. Enjoy an international buffet breakfast or a private in-suite dining option while viewing the Wu Gorge, stretching 28 miles. Awaken the senses with a Tai Chi class, before disembarking at Badong, known for its coal mining and farming, for a real longboat (sampan) trip poled by Tujia boatmen. Sit back and enjoy lunch, an international buffet, before attending either lectures and discussions, or enjoying a special Aromasoul Dream Spa treatment (advanced booking required). Thereafter, enjoy a complimentary afternoon tea or special “bird cage” themed afternoon tea in your suite. Tonight you’ll experience a unique “Taste of China” farewell dinner with your fellow guests.
Start the final day of this exciting tour with an excellent international buffet breakfast before you arrive at the Three Gorges Dam Project site and begin a fascinating tour. The controversial dam is the largest on Earth, at 1.2 miles wide and 600 feet in height. The dam’s 26 generators will generate enough energy to reduce China’s reliance on coal. The downside? It could submerge 13 cities, 140 towns, 1,352 villages and over 600 industrial factories, more than 1,200 archeological projects, and 1.2 million people will need relocating as a result of the flooding. Armed with more knowledge about the region, return to the boat, say your goodbyes to your new friends, and disembark at Yichang. Your tour is over, but you’re left with a lifetime of fabulous memories and a new insight on how life goes on along one of the most important waterways in the world.
The Sanctuary Yangzi Explorer stands alone in terms of comfort and service. It is the only cruiser on the mighty Yangzi whose cabins and suites - some of the largest in the area - all boast private balconies from which guests can enjoy the Chinese panoramas as they glide by. Accommodating up to 124 passengers, it’s a uniquely boutique and intimate travel experience with warm and attentive service unavailable anywhere else on the river. Foodies can dine a la carte on the finest Chinese and international cuisines and learn to cook local delicacies with acclaimed chefs. Explorers can learn about the region with a variety of itineraries, on-board activities and site visits. Relaxation and indulgence is available in one of the river’s largest spa and fitness facilities; bookworms can curl up in the library, and those in search of beautiful sights can take in the views on the observation deck or be entertained in the on-board theater.