Group Tour to China

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Contiki China Adventure Tour Review

Well, my Contiki days are over now but after traveling with 8 Contiki Tours (Italian Espresso, Eastern Mediterranean Cruise, Greece & Italy, Middle Europe, Spanish Spree, Big Indochina, Thai Island Hopper, and China Adventure, whew!), I feel confident saying that the China Adventure is the very best Contiki has to offer. I loved all my experiences, but this one was especially top notch.

Why? See all the very best of China in one trip, go on and off the beaten path, stay in four-star hotels, and make great friends – all with excellent local guides and the best Tour Manager ever: Luke!

Luke was very knowledgable, professional, fun, and just an all around good guy with lots of positive energy. He made a point to take us away from the crowd at the Great Wall so we felt we had it all to ourselves (a priceless “wow moment”) and also took us to some other places, like a local art district, that don’t attract many tourists.

The trip was action packed with all the sites you want to see: forbidden city, Great Wall, terra-cotta warriors, etc., and even though the group demographic was slightly older and better traveled than you’ll find on a European Contiki tour, there was still plenty of opportunity to explore the Shanghai and Hong Kong night life.

You will even get the chance to relax a bit with a leisurely bike ride along the Xian city wall, a Chinese acrobatic performance, a bamboo raft ride and some spa treatments in Yangzhou. All the optionals were well worth it!

I don’t usually like going to the super touristy shopping areas. I did, however, do a lot more shopping than usual and got some really great items – like my silk comforter that I can’t live without & my pearls that I’m wearing right now! I shipped everything home from Hong Kong to make for easier travel.

Three out of the five hotels were WAY nicer than the standard Contiki tour and much better than my budget usually allows, so this was a special treat – oh, and the breakfast spreads were out of this world, especially in Hong Kong!

I value the friendships I formed on this trip, and I even got to visit a few friends in other world travel excursions.

In sum, just do it!

~ LiAnn

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A lovely final 24 hours in Asia spent on the water with a Singapore Sling

Like a Rolling Stone

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The best thing about being a wanderer, or at times being consumed by wanderlust, is the stories you collect. In addition to collecting my own stories, I like to hear about other people’s adventures.

I had a 7 hour delay at the Kathmandu airport – which worked out well because I wound up on a direct flight to Bangkok on the very posh Thai Airways flight that would have cost me $900 if I booked it directly.

While sitting there at the airport, I met a really cool chick from the U.S. who just spent a month hiking in the Himalayas. What a story! In addition to telling me about treacherous, life threatening pathways, being soaking wet in the frigid great outdoors, and appearing in newspapers after a theft at the campsite, she also told me about leeches. She showed me her battle scars and described the leeches as if they were featured in a horror flick. Continue reading