Undiscovered China (19 Days)

Cruise Line: Viking Cruises
Shanghai, China to Beijing, China
Tour Segment  Cruise Segment
Shanghai, China

Fly to Shanghai, China's largest city, then transfer to your hotel. See the modern financial district juxtaposed with the older sections of the city.

Shanghai, China

This morning, tour Old Shanghai and travel along the elegant Bund, stopping to admire some of its historic buildings and city views. Spend some time at the exquisite Yuyuan Garden, dating back to the Ming Dynasty. After lunch in a local restaurant, tour the Shanghai Museum. Dine locally before seeing the world-famous Shanghai Acrobatic Troupe from the best seats in the house. (B,L,D)

Shanghai, China
Air travel
Wuhan, China

After breakfast, prepare for your flight to Wuhan. Upon arriving, transfer to your ship docked close to Wuhan's historic waterfront. You are welcomed aboard with a Western meal. (B,L,D)

Wuhan, China

Today visit the Hubei Provincial Museum, where you hear the chimes of ancient bronze bells and view fascinating relics from 400 BC. Return to the ship and set sail this evening. (B,L,D)

Jingzhou, China

After a morning of sailing, arrive in Jingzhou. Visit an elementary school sponsored by Viking River Cruises where you are greeted and entertained by the children. (B,L,D)

Xiling Gorge, China
Three Gorges Dam, China
Badong, China

This morning, cruise through Xiling Gorge, the longest of the Three Gorges. After lunch, disembark for a tour of the Three Gorges Dam, where you learn about this immense engineering masterpiece and what it means for the Chinese people and the Yangtze. Return to your ship and sail through the five-stage locks of the Three Gorges Dam. Dock overnight at Badong. (B,L,D)

Wu Gorge, China
Qutang Gorge, China

During breakfast, cruise through Wu ("Witches") Gorge, renowned for its magnificent scenery. Then, board a smaller boat for an excursion through the Goddess Stream. Along the way, see fascinating sites including the hanging coffins of the Ba people and the ancient plank road carved into the cliffside. Return aboard for lunch, then spend the afternoon sailing through Qutang Gorge, the shortest, narrowest, and most spectacular of the three large gorges. Dine aboard. (B,L,D)

Shibao, China

This morning, visit Shibaozhai Temple, a 12-story pavilion built in 1650 along the Yangtze. Tour the pavilion and temple before returning aboard for lunch. Enjoy Yangtze River scenery as you cruise this afternoon and through the night. (B,L,D)

Chongqing, China
Dazu, China
Chongqing, China
Chongqing, China

After breakfast, disembark and enjoy a scenic drive through the steep hillsides of Dazu. Then after lunch in a local restaurant, visit the Dazu Stone Carvings, a spectacular collection of elaborate sculptures etched into the rock faces of mountainsides. Throughout this expansive UNESCO World Heritage Site, some 50,000 statues and 100,000 Chinese characters seem to emerge from the cliff sides. After time to explore this remarkable site, return to Chongqing. (B,L,D)

DAY 10
Chongqing, China
Air travel
Lijiang, China

After breakfast, you'll stop at the General Stilwell Museum, where you can learn more about the American general's stormy relationship with Chiang Kai-shek and the Allies during World War II. After lunch, you will fly to Lijiang, which boasts one of China's most unique Old Towns. (B,L,D)

DAY 11
Lijiang, China

Arise in Lijiang today, renowned for the canal-lined warrens and intimate enclaves of its remarkably preserved Old Town. After breakfast, visit the former residence of Dr. Joseph Rock, a famed explorer and botanist of the 1920s who first introduced Lijiang's Naxi culture to the world through his writings and photographs. You will have the remainder of the day to explore this charming city, once the center of silk embroidery and a major stop on the famed Ancient Tea Horse Road. (B)

DAY 12
Lijiang, China

Enjoy another free day exploring the atmospheric streets and lovely waterways of Lijiang's Old Town. You'll enjoy an included lunch at a local restaurant. This afternoon, transfer to the airport for your flight to Chengdu. Upon arrival, you'll visit a local teahouse to experience the age-old custom of drinking tea while locals play mahjong before you enjoy dinner at a nearby restaurant. (B,L,D)

DAY 13
Chengdu, China
Sanxingdui Museum, China
Chengdu, China

After breakfast, visit some of Chengdu's most famous residents at the Panda Research Base. Here, you will have a chance to see these incredible creatures in their natural habitat. After lunch, explore the Sanxingdui Museum, a repository of cultural and historic relics of gold, jade, stone, bronze, and more. After dinner, attend the Sichuan Opera for an unforgettable evening marked by dramatic music, colorful costumes, fire-breathing, and bian lian, or face-changing. (B,L,D)

DAY 14
Chengdu, China
Air travel
Xian, China

You will fly to Xi'an this morning after breakfast and arrive in time for lunch at a local restaurant. Xi'an was a key city of the Tang Dynasty. From 618 to 907 AD, this dynasty presided over one of China's most glorious cultural periods, spreading its influence throughout Asia into Europe and Africa. You will visit the South City Gate and City Wall to witness remnants of its power. Enjoy dinner this evening at a local restaurant. (B,L,D)

DAY 15
Xian, China

After breakfast, tour the mausoleum where Emperor Qin Shi Huang was laid to rest over 2,000 years ago. See the thousands of life-sized terra-cotta warriors, archers, and infantrymen that were buried with him, each man and horse molded with its own distinctive features. Walkways provide a bird's-eye view of the entire necropolis where the Terra-Cotta Army was discovered in the 1970s. After lunch, you have free time to further explore Xi'an. This evening, you may choose to dine surrounded by the song and dance of this colorful era. (B,L,D)

DAY 16
Xian, China
Air travel
Beijing, China

Today, fly to Beijing, China's imperial capital, whose rich history dates back more than 3,000 years. Check into your hotel and dine there; enjoy free time this evening. (B,L,D)

DAY 17
Beijing, China
The Great Wall, China
Beijing, China

After breakfast, travel to the Badaling Hills. There, you behold one of the most impressive and best-preserved sections of the Great Wall of China. This 4,000-mile-long series of sandstone and earthwork fortifications was built and maintained between the 5th century BC and the 16th century AD, and is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Explore its winding pathways and marvel at the panoramic views from its ramparts. After a lunch of local specialties, visit the Sacred Way, a tree-lined avenue guarded by massive sculptures of elephants, lions, and camels leading to the Ming Dynasty tombs. This evening, dine at a local restaurant and relax at your hotel, or enjoy an optional Peking duck dinner, the region's famous dish. (B,L,D)

DAY 18
Beijing, China

This morning visit the enormous Tiananmen Square, which can accommodate over 1 million people. Then, tour Beijing's Forbidden City, a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Made up of nearly 1,000 buildings, it is the world's largest surviving palace complex. Walk its grounds among the opulent palaces, pavilions, courtyards, and imperial gardens within the 26-foot-high walls. After lunch in a local restaurant, take some free time to explore Beijing on your own or do some shopping. Enjoy your dinner this evening, or attend The Legend of Kung Fu for a beautiful display of this performance art, which has roots that date back 4,000 years. (B,L,D)

DAY 19
Beijing, China

After breakfast, check out of your hotel and proceed to the airport for your return flight. Airport meet & greet transfers included when air is purchased from Viking River Cruises. Or, continue your China journey with three nights in Hong Kong. (B)

Undiscovered China map

About the Ship

Viking Emerald

From your intimate river cruise ship on the Mekong or Irrawaddy or China’s deluxe Yangtze River cruise, you will sail past unforgettable scenery, visit destinations rich in history, enjoy wonderful cuisine and meet the region’s fascinating, friendly people.

What's Included



    Viking built the river cruising category—and we offer the best experience, with all you need included plus the ability to customize

    Included in your cruise fare:

  • ONE SHORE EXCURSION in each port of call, led by a knowledgeable local guide

  • ALL ONBOARD MEALS, featuring regional specialties made with locally sourced ingredients and always available American classics

  • YOUR CHOICE OF MULTIPLE DINING VENUES and times (including open seating)

  • WINE, BEER & SODAS with onboard dinner and lunch

  • SPECIALTY COFFEES & TEAS available 24 hours

  • BOTTLED WATER replenished daily

  • INTERNET/WI-FI so you can remain connected

  • FIRST-CLASS HOTELS for overnight stays during our cruisetour programs and pre & post cruise extension packages

  • IN-ROOM INFOTAINMENT SYSTEM features movies on demand, plus CNBC, CNN, National Geographic and more

  • ALL PORT CHARGES & GOVERNMENT TAXES—no nickel and diming

About Us

Viking® offers destination-focused river and ocean cruises to the world’s most fascinating locations on board elegant, state-of-the art ships. With Viking, guests will journey with like-minded travelers on The Thinking Person’s Cruise®, a culturally rich, immersive experience designed to help guests explore the most intimate nuances of their destination both on board and ashore—with enriching shore excursions, informative lectures and port talks, engaging Destination Performances, wine tastings and regional cuisine. Plus, Viking Inclusive Value provides guests all they need in one inclusive cruise fare.

Insider Tip

Viking has a variety of ways in which you can customize your trip including premium beverage packages, gift orders and making arrangements for special occasions.

Terms & Conditions

Prices are per person, based on double occupancy, unless otherwise noted. Pricing, dates, inclusions, and itinerary are subject to change without notice, and vary by departure date and cabin. Restrictions may apply. Ship are registered in: Switzerland, Germany, Portugal, Ukraine, China, Vietnam and Egypt.

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