Day 1: Arrive Beijing – Arrive at anytime during the day and make your way to the hotel. An evening group meeting is planned followed by dinner.
· Group Meeting and included Beijing Duck dinner
Day 2: Beijing – Spend the day exploring the impressive Great Wall.
· Mutianyu Great Wall Excursion
Day 3: Beijing / Sleeper Train – Spend the morning visiting central Beijing's sites with free time in the afternoon until boarding an overnight sleeper train to Pyongyang.
· Tiananmen Square, Forbidden City
Day 4: Pyongyang – Spend the day watching the rural countryside of North Korea from the train arriving in the capitol Pyongyang around 19:30 and then transferring to your hotel.
Day 5: Pyongyang – Morning visit to Panmunjom / DMZ where North and South Korea continue their decades old stand off. It is possible go into one of the huts that straddle the demarcation line. Continue to the Kaesong Koryo Museum (an old Confucian University) and then visit Janam Hill. Return to Pyongyang for a tour of the cities huge monolithic governement buildings and squares.
· DMZ Visit, Koryo Museum, Mangyongdae, Pyongyang Subway, Juche Tower
Day 6: Pyongyang – Drive north of Pyongyang approx 2 hours to Mt Myohyang - the Mountain of Mysterious Fragrance. The main attraction of the area is the International Friendship Exhibition built in 1978, these 2 huge subterranean halls are filled with gifts to the leaders of Kim Il Sung and Kim Jong Il.Return back to Pyongyang for some last minute shopping at local Art Studio known for their excellent paintings, embroidery and ceramics.
· Mansudae Fountain park and monument, Chollima Statue, Arch of Triumph, Pohyon Temple
Day 7: Depart – Depart Pyongyang on a morning flight bound for Beijing where the tour ends. For those passengers with international connections you can transit in the airport until your onward flight. For passengers wishing to continue visiting China a DOUBLE ENTRY VISA is required. A China re-entry visa can be arranged in Pyongyang at the Chinese Embassy with the help of your Korean guide.
Note: Due to North Korean regulations American passport holders need to fly in and out of Pyongyang when visiting North Korea. For these passengers the cost of the trip would be higher due to the additional flight costs.
Before You Leave
Visas - A visa is required for entry into China for all nationalities except Japan, Singapore and Brunei who are allowed visa free stays under 14 days. Travellers holding APEC cards are allowed entrance visa free if their card has already been approved for China.
Under the current guidelines to get a visa you will need to provide the following:
- Letter of Invitation from a Chinese agency
- Copy of Flight tickets
- Hotel booking confirmation
- Travel Insurance (some embassies ask for this document)
In some cases, you may be required to provide further information or documentation and if this is the case we will notify you as soon as possible.
Booking a Single Room - On this particular tour we are pleased to be able to offer travellers the option of pre-booking a guaranteed single room. Due to the variety of accommodation used on this tour, single rooms are available for a majority of the nightstops, however it would still mean sharing on any overnight trains. All of our tours are planned and operated on a twin-share basis, meaning that the standard cost is based either on individual travellers sharing accommodation with another group member of the same sex, or people who book together sharing accommodation.
Vaccinations and Your Health - We recommend that you contact your primary care physician or a travel doctor for advice on vaccinations and travel health and we advise that you check to see if your tetanus-diphtheria booster is still valid every 10 years.
Insurance - Travel insurance is compulsory for all our customers. At the start of the trip you must provide us with: the name of your insurance company, your policy number, a 24 hour medical emergency contact number, and the expiry date of the policy. You should ensure that your policy covers you for medical expenses and repatriation. If you are unable to provide all this information at the start of the trip you will not be allowed to join the trip. You can purchase insurance easily online by checking our Travel Insurance page.
Luggage - One main piece of lockable baggage and a shoulder bag. Total allowance: 44lbs/20kgs. Remember, you are expected to carry your own baggage – so don’t overload yourself. It is essential that your baggage is lockable; the airline/train authorities insist on this. Please be aware, before boarding a flight in China that the Chinese authorities will only allow bottles onto aircraft if they have been checked in as main luggage. Any bottles in the hand luggage may be confiscated.
What to Expect on Tour
Itinerary Disclaimer – The information in this trip details has been compiled with care and is provided in good faith. However it is subject to change, and does not form part of the contract between the client and the operator. The itinerary featured is correct at time of printing. Occasionally our itineraries change as we make improvements that stem from past travellers, comments and our own research. Sometimes it can be a small change like adding an extra meal along the itinerary. Sometimes the change may result in us altering the tour for the coming year. Ultimately, our goal is to provide you with the most rewarding experience.
Accommodation - Your accommodation is selected for convenience of location, comfort or character, and can range from a business hotel in one city to a family run guesthouse in a smaller town. In more remote areas, accommodation may be of a lower standard and may not have all western amenities. Hotels are generally rated as local three to four star standard, but please note that there is no international classification system for hotels and differences in facilities and quality do exist between the US and China. Rest assure that all hotels used by China Adventure Tours are regularly inspected by our staff to ensure that standards meet your needs.
In other cities and large towns the standard is similar although on a lesser scale. In small towns or villages where tourism is less prevalent, the hotels we use are smaller and facilities are more limited, though we generally stay in the best place in town. Rooms will still be en suite but rooms can be basic. Plumbing and electricity supplies can be somewhat erratic and although the welcome is warm, service levels may be less efficient than you may be used to.
Aboard the overnight sleeper train, berths are usually in 1st class ‘soft sleeper’ lockable compartments for 4 which have 2 sets of bunks with clean bedding provided. WC and washbasins are provided for shared use at the end of each carriage. Hot meals and snacks are sold to your berth on all overnight journeys. In times of large demand we may have to travel in 2nd class ‘hard sleeper’ which consists of sectioned off compartments for 6,leading off an open plan carriage.
Tipping - If you're happy with the services provided then a tip - though not compulsory - is appropriate. Tipping is of great significance to the people who will take care of you during your travels, inspires excellent service, and is an entrenched feature of the tourism industry across China and other Asian countries. We recommend that any tips are given to the intended recipient by a member of your group, rather than collected and passed on by the group leader.
The following amounts are based on local considerations and feedback from our past travellers:
Restaurants: Tipping is not common practice at restaurants in China or Tibet.
Local guides: Throughout your trip you may at times have a local guide in addition to your leader. We suggest CNY10-15 per person per day for local guides.
Porters: In some hotels a porter may offer to carry your bag to your room. We suggest CNY5 per bag for porters.
Drivers: You may have a range of drivers on your trip. Some may be with you for a short journey while others may be with you for several days. We would suggest that you tip only those more involved with the group (for example those that help you with your bags etc). CNY5-10 per person per day is generally appropriate.
Your Group Leader: You may also consider tipping your leader for outstanding service throughout your trip. The amount is entirely a personal preference; however as a guideline US$3-5 per person, per day can be used. Of course you are free to tip more or less as you see fit, depending on your perception of service quality and the length of your trip.
Optional Extras - Our standard tours are planned to be as fully inclusive as possible. However, from time-to-time your Tour Leader or Local Guide may suggest optional tours/sightseeing in addition to the standard sightseeing planned for that city. Such options are at an additional cost, with prices ranging from 20-200 CNY per person. If you do not wish to take part in any optional extras, you will have the option of enjoying some free time at leisure or to return to the hotel.
Personal Expenses - You will need to take some extra money to cover drinks, laundry and souvenirs, plus any additional sightseeing that may be offered to you. Based on the advice of previous customers an approximate amount of $250 per week should be sufficient; however for those that can’t resist a bargain, consider allocating a higher amount.
Electricity Supply & Plugs – For China operates on a 220V and uses a combination of US/European and Chinese style plugs in most hotel rooms.