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How to Plan Your 12 Day Vacation in China

China is an amazingly rich country in terms of historical, cultural and natural treasures. In fact, China has twenty-four cultural sites and five natural relics listed on the World Heritage List, and the UNESCO World Heritage List has fifty-eight more locations on its tentative list. As you can imagine, there is a lot to see and do in China, and your vacation will be incredible, no matter what you decide to do. If you’re planning a trip of around two weeks, this 12-day itinerary can help you plan your vacation.

You could just take off, travel around and see some incredible sites, but you might miss some things you would really enjoy. It makes sense to plan what you’re going to do and how you’re going to travel through China, so you can see the best of everything and not miss anything truly outstanding.

Starting in Beijing makes sense for a lot of reasons, including the fact that Beijing is one of the most important cities in terms of China’s historical development, and contains a number of major treasures. During your three days in Beijing, make sure that you see not only the Great Wall and the Forbidden City, but also the Temple of Heaven, Tiananmen Square, The Summer Palace, and The Ming Tombs, as well as the traditional Hutong. This sounds like a lot to take in during only three days, but by planning carefully, you can enjoy all of these sites while you’re in Beijing.

You’ll then spend two days in Xian, where you will explore the history of China. Your major priority in Xian will be the Terra Cotta Army, an army of, literally, clay soldiers. You will also see the Big Wild Goose Pagoda. Both the Army and the Pagoda were important in the Chinese Revolution, and should not be missed.

You can then fly to Gullin, a breathtaking city that will renew your spirit and give you time to rest and relax. From there, on to Yangshuo and two days cruising the Li River. Don’t miss the Reed Flute Caves and the Elephant Trunk Hills on your cruise.

Next, spend five or even six days in Yunan. Make sure you visit Kunming, a beautiful city and very friendly to tourists from other countries. The Yunan province includes the Shilin Stone Forest, Tiger Leaping Gorge, Jade Dragon Snow Mountain, and Erhai Lake, all beautiful areas to see on your tour.

You’ll finish up your time in China by visiting Shanghai, one of China’s oldest cities and one of its most famous. You’ll visit the Yuyuan Garden, Jade Buddha Temple, Shanghai Bund and French Concession. Make sure you spend some time shopping in the malls and markets if that’s your kind of thing.

Twelve days is both a very short time and a very long time for a vacation trip to China, and you will have a wonderful time exploring the countryside as well as the cultural and historic areas of China. Take lots of pictures and have a wonderful time on your trip.

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