Experience the Golden Triangle of China

Experience the Golden Triangle of China

CET-01: 8 Days Beijing - Xi'an - Shanghai Tour

As you learn about the ancient past right through to the future of China, you will go through a hundred different emotions considering the cruelty of feudalism and the beauty of socialism. Listening to the Emperors’ life stories in Beijing, seeing the Emperor’s mausoleum in Xi’an, and shopping in the ‘Paris of the east’, Shanghai. You will experience the Golden Triangle in many different ways.

CET Advantages

  • Discover the architectural structure of the Royal Palace
  • Wander around the traditional courtyards of Beijing
  • Learn Tai Chi in the Temple of Heaven
  • Experience the high-speed train from Beijing to Xi'an
  • Witness the culture of the Tang Dynasty through the Giant Wild Goose Pagoda
  • Cycle on the Xi'an City Wall with a history of more than 600 years
  • Make dumplings with a local family in Xi'an
  • See a combination of old and new in Shanghai


No Shopping Traps

Group Type

Group Type


Tour Focus

Tour Focus

History, Culture


Include Meals

Breakfast:7; Lunch:6




Best Season

Best Season

Spring, Summer, Autumn, Winter

Suit For: School, Family or Friends, Solo, 1st Trip to China

Map of My Trip

Experience the Golden Triangle of China

Full Itinerary

Day 1
Beijing Arrival

Your local guide will welcome you in the arrival hall of Beijing Capital International Airport (PEK) where you will find a sign with your name and the logo of China Educational Tours on it. We will escort you to your hotel. After check in, you can relax and recover from jet-lag.

beijing capital international airport

Welcome to Beijing, China

Day 2
Beijing: City Tour (breakfast & lunch)

An early get up will allow you to see the Flag-Raising Ceremony at Tiananmen Square. Or you could stay in bed late and have a relaxed breakfast at your hotel. Your guide will meet you at the hotel lobby and drive you to the Forbidden City. After two hours in the Forbidden City, listening to the stories about China’s Emperors, you will have a rough idea about the very long history and the Dynasties of China. Today’s lunch will be served at a local restaurant for you to try some authentic Chinese food.

forbidden city

A Throne in the Forbidden City


A Hutongs tour will be arranged after lunch. The Hutongs are alleys and have been well preserved in Beijing. Visiting a local family in this hundred-year old courtyard house helps you to know more about local people’s life, both in the past and present.

beijing hutong

Take a Rickshaw Tour through the Beijing Hutongs


Recommended activity:

1. ‘The Legend of Kungfu’ premiered in 2004. In contrast to the traditional Kungfu show, it demonstrates Kungfu through dramatic stories. The group also tours abroad and has a good reputation.

2. ‘Acrobatics at Chaoyang Theatre’ was founded in 1984. Their performances have won more than 30 awards at home and abroad. "Blue And White Porcelain" (balancing a stack of bowls on the head), which is one of their acts, was on the stage of the Spring Festival Gala in 2015.

3. Peking Opera is one of five major operas in China and the quintessence of Chinese culture with a history of nearly 200 years. It was entertainment only for the court in the beginning and then slowly opened to common people as well.

peking opera

Peking Opera: Lady General Mu Takes Command

Day 3
Beijing: The Temple of Heaven And The Great Wall (breakfast & lunch)

Spend the early morning in the Temple of Heaven, where you will experience both Chinese history and the local people’s life. It was the place where the emperors would go twice a year to carry out ritual ceremonies of sacrifice, expressing gratitude to Heaven for the previous harvest, and praying for the next. You will see senior citizens doing morning exercises, practicing martial arts, and playing traditional instruments. You could also try Tai Chi for around 30 minutes under a master's instruction. And then we will drive you for about 1.5 hours to the Mutianyu Section of the Great Wall. You will have lunch on the way at a farm.

temple of heaven

Temple of Heaven: a Taoist temple


We highly recommend this section of the Great Wall as it is less crowded and with more unique features. Here over 96% of the Wall is covered by trees and orchards, keeping the air fragrant with chestnut blossoms in spring and fresh all year long. In the late afternoon, or on rainy days, you might find yourself alone, hearing only the sound of the wind. You will be back to your hotel at around 17:30.

mutianyu great wall

The Mutianyu Great Wall in Autumn

Day 4
Beijing – Xi'an by Speed Train: The Summer Palace and Kindergarten Visiting (breakfast & lunch)

Start this day with the Summer Palace. It is a vast ensemble of lakes, gardens and palaces. A boat ride on Kunming Lake would be a highlight of this tour. Have lunch at a local restaurant.

kunming lake

Kunming Lake, Summer Palace


Before boarding the train to Xi’an in the afternoon, you get a chance to visit a Kindergarten in Gaobeidian Village where you will spend a delightful time with the lovely children there. And then we will transfer you to the railway station to catch the speed train to Xi'an.


On arrival at Xi'an north railway station, you will meet our guide waiting for you at the exit. Going back to hotel for rest.

Day 5
Xi'an: Discover One of the 7 Wonders (breakfast & lunch)

Driving about 1 hour from your downtown hotel, we arrive at the Terracotta Warriors and Horse Museum. The Museum has won fame as one of the greatest archaeological finds of the 20th Century. The life-sized warriors and horses are still standing there after being buried underground for over two thousand years. It is helpful to watch a short film that is available prior to entering the Museum. It will transport you right into the world of Qin Shi Huang, the first Emperor of China, and his amazing army. Next, you will see a Cave dwelling, which is an ancient form of habitation on the loess plateau in northwestern China. It features a harmonious coexistence between humans and nature, as well as being warm in winter and cool in summer. Have lunch nearby.

the terracotta warriors and horses

Emperor Qin's Terra Cotta Army


We will drive you back to the city centre. Have you EVER imagined that you could ride a bike on a Wall? Twelve meters high and fifteen meters wide, the Xi’an City Wall (Fortifications of Xi'an) represents one of the oldest and best preserved city walls in China. It is another of the Heritage sites in China. You can choose to bike around the 13.7 kilometers of wall or take an open air mini bus for the 40 minute drive.

xian city wall

City Wall: Xi'an Landmark


Recommended activity:

1. The music fountain at the north square of Big Wild Goose Pagoda is free to the public. You can stroll around it after dinner to experience local life.

2. ‘Tang-Dynasty Palace Music and Dances’ is a performance that was re-created by many famous artists in Shaanxi province, displaying the essence of music, rhythm, and dance art in the Tang Dynasty.

Day 6
Xi'an - Shanghai by Plane: City Tour (breakfast & lunch)

After breakfast, you will visit Shaanxi History Museum, which is the most comprehensive historical museum in China.

Note: we may replace the museum with the Muslim Street and the Great Mosque during July, August and public holidays as it will be packed with people.

shanxi history museum

Shaanxi History Museum

Then a visit to the Giant Wild Goose Pagoda which was built a thousand years ago. One of the pagoda's functions was to hold sutras and figurines of the Buddha that were brought from India by the Buddhist translator and traveler, Xuanzang. You may also be fortunate enough to see one of the local calligraphy masters performing his art and have your name written in Chinese.

giant wild goose pagoda

Giant Wild Goose Pagoda: a Buddhist pagoda


Another highlight of today is dumpling making with a local family. Start with preparing the wrappers and the fillings, and then wrapping them together, and finally cooking them. Talking with the host is the best part of this activity. Enjoy what you made for lunch and take a short rest.

It is time to go to the airport for your flight to Shanghai.

making dumpling

Visit Local Family in Xi'an


Our guide will meet you at the airport on your arrival and accompany you to your hotel.

shanghai airport

Shanghai Arrival

Day 7
Shanghai: City Tour (breakfast & lunch)

After breakfast, our guide and driver will pick you up at the hotel lobby. Then we arrive at Yu Garden which is the only well-preserved classic Chinese garden in Shanghai. It has the typical elements of a Chinese garden: pavilions, rockeries, pools, arch gates and paintings, You will be fascinated to find all these perfect combinations in one garden. Next to it, you will pass by the City God Temple which is a Taoist temple in memory of the heroes that are meritorious to people or country.

yu garden

Yu Garden: a Classical Garden in China

After that, we will go to Pudong New Area to view the modern skyscrapers complex. Standing on the 100th floor of the World Financial Centre, you will be surprised how fast China has been developed. The Bird's-eye view from the sky bridge tells you that the city never ends. Across Huangpu River, you will arrive at The Bund, where the multinational classic buildings complex is. Have lunch at a local restaurant.

world financial centre

World Financial Centre: the highest flat-roofed building in the world


We will take you to an interesting place, Xin Tian Di, which is the fashion center of Shanghai, and there is a collision between Chinese and western cultures in architectural styles. It is close to the business street of Huaihai Road, which is walking distance from the Old French Concession. You can spend half of the day strolling around this area to enjoy a piece of history.

shanghai xintaindi

Xin Tian Di: a fashion center


Recommended activity:

1. ‘A live acrobatic show’ by Shanghai Acrobatic Troupe, or another one called ‘ERA, Intersection of Time’.

2. Night cruise along Huangpu River to see the beautiful city lights on both sides.

night view of huangpu river

Night cruise along Huangpu River

Day 8
Shanghai Departure (Breakfast)

Enjoy some morning shopping or relaxing on your own. Your guide and driver will pick you up from your hotel and transfer you to the International Airport, where our guide will assist you to check-in. Have a safe journey back home.

Note: you can go shopping at Asia Pacific Plaza which is a biggest fake goods market in Pudong if you have free time in the morning.

see off at shanghai airport

See you next time

Featured Hotel

  Comfortable Deluxe
Beijing Penta Hotel Beijing Regent Beijing
Xi'an Grand Noble Hotel Xi'an Wyndham Grand Xian South
Shanghai Narada Boutique Hotel Shanghai Bund Radisson Blu Hotel Shanghai New World

What’s Included

  • Bullet train ticket from Beijing to Xi'an
  • Flight ticket from Xi'an to Shanghai
  • Private English speaking tour guide
  • Hotel accommodation
  • Entrance to attractions listed in the itinerary
  • Meals as included in the itinerary
  • Private transfers & ground transportation with licensed driver


1. How many people in our group?

This is a private tour for just your party. You will be accompanied by your private tour guide and driver with a nice van. All our tours are private and tailor-made to meet the special needs of different customers. So you can travel at your own pace without compromise.

2. I noted there are some biking tours in this trip, what if I can’t ride a bike?

For this private tour, the tour arrangement can be adjusted during the tour. If you are not into biking, just tell your guide and he/she will change it to walking tour, a tour with battery golf cart or battery scooters as per your interest. Any of your special requirements can be accommodated with China Educational Tours.

3. Will there be someone at the airports to meet me and take me to the hotel?

Yes, your personal guide will be waiting for you outside of the luggage claim area at the arrival hall of an airport. The guide will be holding a sign with your name on it, as well as the CET logo. After the tour, the guide and driver will see you off at the airport. The tour guide will help you with check-in procedure. They will leave after you go through the security check. All of the flight tickets are E-tickets. You only need to show your passport for check-in. I will make sure your tour guides are on standby before your arrival.

4. How did you choose the hotels?

We choose hotels based on their location, feedback and best value for money. Hotels in China don’t usually match the same standard as in western countries. Five-star hotels are usually well facilitated with a spacious lobby and comfortable rooms. International chain hotels can meet western standards, while local brands may not. Four-star hotels are well-equipped but with not as much luxury as Five-star ones. Hotel staff in Four-star hotels speak limited English. Three-star hotels can usually meet the standard of most westerners, but breakfast is without many choices and hotel staff speak no other language.

What Our Customers Say On This Tour

I think the most memorable attraction for me was the Terra-Cotta Warriors.

I think the most memorable attraction for me was the Terra-Cotta Warriors. I knew there were some found, but I never imagined the magnitude of the excavation and what was found. It was truly amazing.

-Freda Salikin
Tour guides were all very flexible and made sure we were always happy and had everything we needed.

The most outstanding tour guide would have to be Le Le in Guilin. I am saying that because he was the one we spent the most time with and we got to know the best. All of the tour guides were so good to us. They had a great sense of humour and we got along so well with all of them. They were all very flexible and made sure we were always happy and had everything we needed.

-Terry Willock