China Travel Guide: Planning your Trip to China
A Step by Step Guide
Our China Travel Guide will take you step by step from your door to the steps of the Great Wall...
From some very essential points
like securing your China visa...
... to advice on best times to go...
... places to visit if this is your first time to China...
... to practical information such as changing
... what to pack...
Here's all you need to know to have a grand time in the Middle Kingdom!
Let's get started!
Yes! It's a great land! Where to go? Lots of places to see, lots of things to do! Climbing the Great Wall, rickshaw rides, ancient terracotta soldiers,
biking in the countryside, stunning mountains, giant buddhas, bamboo rafting, cuddly pandas...
take a deep breath...don't cram too much into the schedule... assume you will be back!
It's great if you can choose the timing of your trip, as a general rule, spring and autumn are very pleasant to travel in China. Knowing what
to expect during the time of your travel is important. If there are any major holidays or celebrations, you need to pay special attention to your
transportation and accomodation as this becomes very challenging during these times.
One major aspect will be to decide whether to go on an organized tour or make the arrangements yourself
A combination of factors such as higher oil prices and increased airport taxes throughout the
world makes getting cheap flights to China increasingly more difficult.
But there are still many ways you can save when booking your air tickets to China.
If traveling with a tour, skip to Step 8. Individual travelers continue to plan accomodations and local transportation.
Hotels, Apartments, Youth Hostels, Rentals... Follow our guide to the different accommodation options you may encounter,
the standards you can expect at each and tips on booking and getting the best deals.
When traveling to different cities within China, you should pre-book your domestic transportation if you are traveling on a tight schedule. Otherwise,
unless it's during peak holiday season, booking
as you go will be fine and might even save you money. There are several options for getting around cities, here are some resources for booking
domestic flights and high-speed trains.
Want to see the acrobats? Hug a panda? Ride some rickshaws or go for a bike ride? It is a good idea to pre-book
any activity that you REALLY want to see or do to
avoid dissapointment. Activities can be booked separately for each city you wish to visit. It is easy to put your own program together.
We have used and recommend
Viator to book our excursions.
Viator is an online resource that offers hundreds of adventure activities, city tours,
off-the-beaten-path experiences, educational tours, family-friendly activities, day trips, airport transfers... you name it,
in hundreds of different locations, not only in China.
A China Visa is needed by all foreign passport holders upon entry into China with very few exceptions. Chances are, you need to get one.
First review any coverage you might have with your current policies for medical insurance or any coverage provided with your credit card
issuer for any travel-related casualties.
We do recommend that everyone traveling to China or any foreign country for that matter get the appropriate coverage to safeguard
the holiday from any unexpected incidents.
Travel insurance is not only for medical emergencies, which your existing medical policy may or may not cover, but will also
provide assistance in cases of trip delays or interruptions, evacuations, lost baggage...
there's also the peace of mind of knowing that if something does go wrong there will be a helping hand and someone ready to assist you to sort it out. Considering
the cost of a policy, you can not afford NOT to have one!
Are vaccinations required for China? Can you drink the water?
In this section we cover basic safety and health concerns when traveling to China and the precautions you should take
to make sure your trip is a healthy and enjoyable one.
Will my phone work in China? How do I access the internet with my ipad? How do I charge my batteries?
Check out these sections that provide answers to some basic questions about internet access, cell phone and tablet use and electricity in China:
The Chinese currency is the Chinese Yuan or Renminbi used throughout mainland China. If venturing to Hong Kong, you will need to exchange HK dollars, Macau as well
has its own currency, the Pataca. Where to exchange? How much to bring? Are credit cards widely accepted? Here are some answers:
Here's a useful checklist of essential stuff to take along, and the not so essential stuff that comes in really handy.
All done! Relax and Enjoy! Welcome to China!
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Planning Your China Trip
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