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More and more people continue to be fascinated by China and her culture. Many people are planning travel trips to China. We advize you on how to plan a trip to China for first time tour visitors to China.

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The best way to plan a travel trip to China 

More and more people are travelling to China.

Everyday, we notice more and more tourists arriving in various parts of China. For many tourists, it was an eagerly anticipated, once in a life-time trip while for others, it was like repeat visits to a country and culture that never fail to fascinate them again and again.

Many first time visitors to China often ask us on the best way to plan trips to China. This article will attempt to give you advice on how to plan a travel trip to China.

Prepare before travel

1. Ensure you have applied for a visa to travel to China (Read Visa application)
2. Change plenty of Reminbi notes as credit cards are not widely accepted
3. Book a tour package in your own home country. (Or check this online agency)
4. If you are adventurous enough, forget about tour pacakges and plan your own itinerary. Reserve hotel rooms and domestic air tickets ahead especially if travelling during peak period.
5. Prepare a small medical kit as you may fall sick from the local food or from too much hectic travel
6. Have a handy phrase book as most Chinese do not speak nor understand English (Check our basic Chinese guide)
7. Buy your camera from home as international electronic brands tend to be more expensive in China
8. Prepare mentally that some parts of China will be crowded, noisy and dirty

Plan your time well ahead

Always plan well ahead. China is such a large and fascinating country that too short a trip would mean a wasted trip as you would have missed out on a lot of fascinating sights and sound.

The best time to travel to China is between May to November as the winter months between December to March can be very cold, especially towards Northern and Western China.

Avoid planning any kind of travel on the three golden weeks in China;

1. Two weeks during Chinese New Year (Likely to be late January or early February each year)
2. The first week of May (May day holidays)
3. First week of October (National Day holidays)

These are weeks where every Chinese would also be on holidays. This create an incredible crush on air, land and sea transport systems as well as hotels, restaurants and tourist sights. Always plan for trips before or after the golden weeks and never during, unless you don't mind being crushed by millions of Chinese on holiday as well.

Travel China and Asia

Plan your interests

Ask yourself what you would like to see in China. Try to travel on a theme to make your trip more interesting and rewarding.

Modern China - If you are interested in modern China, and want to see how modern this country has become, plan visits to places like Shanghai, Shenzhen, Xiamen, Hong Kong and Macau. These are some of the most modern cities in China today and they showcase the incredible wealth and economy that China is today. There are massive casinos where you can play blackjack, slots and poker. There are also famous modern restaurants, buildings and shopping centres for visitors to experience.

Historical China - If you are interested in the history and culture of China, plan visits to Beijing, Xian, Nanjing etc. These are cities which were cradles of olden emperors, historical events or happenings and many of these cities still retain the ancient relics, buildings, tombs and artefacts. Hence, you will find the fascinating Terra-cotta warriors in Xian, the Great Wall in Beijing and Ming tombs of Nanjing and let the tour guides fascinate you with tales of palace betrayals, assination attempts and peasant revolts.

Scenic China - Many people are not aware of the beautiful landscapes that China offers. These natural landscapes exist all over China but some of the larger and more awesome landscapes include the beautiful and scenic Jiuzhaigou in Sichuan (Natural temperate nature reserve), the Three Gorges (beautiful river and mountains) and Mount Emei in Wudang (Mountain landscapes and Buddha curvings).

Cultural China - China can be a very diverse country and you can enjoy many different culture and way of life within China. Go on a Silkroad trip (Western China) and trace how Marco Polo travelled to China, travel to Yunnan and see how minority ethnic tribes live in China, visit the cute Pandas in Szechuan or cycle through the hutongs (narrow lanes) in the remaining olden parts of Beijing.

Plan your mode of travel

If you have time, plan a slow trip through China using local transport (buses/trains) and absorb the true sight, sound and smell of China. Live with the Chinese, eat with the Chinese and even party with the Chinese.

For most of us, we don't have the time, and hence a city to city hop via air is the fastest and most ideal way to cover China.

Domestic air travel in China is well developed and getting tickets is a matter of calling your hotel's travel desk or getting the ticket at the airport itself. Three major domestic airlines in China will vie for your business and you can apply for an air mileage card if you forsee a lot of air travel in and out of China.

For more information about Chinese way of life and to prevent cultural shock, check out this interesting China Book. Or email us for further information.