Cruising China's Yangtze River

The Yangtze River is the largest river in China and the third largest river in the world, after the Nile and the Amazon. A cruise to China's Yangtze River became very popular in the '90s as the controversial construction of the Three Gorges Dam approached. It would raise water levels by 575 feet or 175 meters, irrevocably changing the beautiful mountain scenery that this region was known for. Everyone hurried to get the last glimpse of the glorious peaks before it was too late...

China Yangtze River China Yangtze River China Yangtze River

The project has now been completed, with water levels rising the entire 175 meters for the first time in 2010. So, if the famous cliffs and mountain peaks are now partially submerged, you wonder, is there still anything worthwhile to see, is a cruise to the Yangtze River still appealing?

China Yangtze River

Seeing the Yangtze River Gorges had always been my dad's wish. As we contemplated our itinerary, we asked ourselves the same question, is it still worth it?

In addition, we thought, three days on a boat, what will we do with the kids? they will drive us and everybody else on the ship crazy, this isn't a Disney Cruise... for beautiful scenery and a boat ride we could go to Guilin instead, that is some of the most beautiful in China and a Li River trip takes only one day...

Anyway... Dad's wishes won, and the Yangtze Cruise it was...


In the end, I am glad we did it and also want to encourage other families with kids considering a cruise down the Yangtze River:

  • It provided some much needed "down time" after the action-packed days in Beijing and Xian. Alternatively, you could choose this as your starting point of your China trip to recover from the long flight and the jetlag.

  • The side excursions were fun. Now that water levels are higher, some new areas are now accessible by boat. They were previously only accessible by land through bad bumpy roads. These areas are some of the most breathtakingly beautiful we've seen and here was one of the kids favorite excursion which included some rafting on a crystal clear stream.

  • There were quite a few families with kids on the boat, plenty of playmates around...

  • No packing and unpacking, airports or trains for 3-4 days!

  • Most important, dad got to see his famous Three Gorges, which by the way are still very much breathtaking and awe-inspiring.



And This is How our Four Days Went...



Yangtze River Shennong Stream

Day 1

- We arrived in Chongqing and had a little time to explore the city, and what a mega-city... This is where our cruise ship would depart from. After a quick look around, we boarded the ship in the evening of the first day.

Day 2

- Left Chongqing early in the morning. Cruised for half a day and arrived to Fengdu, the Ghost City.

Day 3

- Wake up call at 6 a.m. as

Day 4

- Disembark the ship and visit to the Yangtze River Dam Project in the morning. Some time in Yichang before afternoon flight to Shanghai.

You can follow the course in this Map of the Yangtze River as we started downstream from Chongqing to Yichang.

So join us on our Cruise, let's start our journey in Chongqing!


Booking Your Yangtze River Cruise



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