Victoria Cruises and Orient Flexi-Pax Tours will continue to bring
travelers down the Yangtze River in 2011. // © 2010 Aschwin
Victoria Cruises has renewed its agreement with Orient Flexi-Pax Tours, a division of Isramworld, in which Victoria remains the exclusive provider of Yangtze River cruises. Other itineraries currently being finalized will be added to the 11-night Yangtze River Voyage, which also includes Beijing, Xian and Shanghai, for 2011.
The 11-night program includes a three-night cruise aboard a Victoria Cruises vessel as well as eight nights' accommodations at Peninsula Hotels in Beijing and Shanghai as well as the Sofitel Xian on Renmin Square. Also included are domestic flights and airport transfers within China, 26 meals, sightseeing with an English-speaking guide and the USTOA $1 Million Travelers Assistance Program.
Escorted sightseeing in Beijing includes an excursion to the Great Wall of China; a visit to Tiananmen Square and the nearby Forbidden City; a journey along the Sacred Path to see the elaborate Ming Tombs; a visit to the Temple of Heaven, where emperors have prayed since its construction in the 15th century; a look at the site of the 2008 Summer Olympics; and a trip to the Summer Palace. The group also will see a performance of the Beijing Opera and enjoy a special Beijing Duck banquet.
In Xian, the group will see the Terra-Cotta Warriors, take a trip to the Shaanxi Provincial Museum, visit the Great Mosque and take a tour of the Han Tombs, along with a special Tang Dynasty Dinner and Theater Performance.
The Yangtze cruise portion will include a view of centuries-old pagodas and temples along the river from Chongqing to Yichang, onboard activities including Tai Chi lessons and nightly entertainment; an excursion to the impressive Three Gorges Dam Site in San Dou Ping; and a tour of the "Ghost City" of Fengdu at Mingshan Hill, complete with statues of spirits and demons. The cruise will sail through the Small Gorges of the Daning River, one of the Yangtze's tributaries, to a floating dock near Dachang, where passengers will board a traditional sampan for a ride through the "Mini Gorges" of the Ma Du River.
In Shanghai, there will be a leisurely stroll along The Bund, Shanghai's famed waterfront promenade; a visit to the classical Yu Yuan Gardens; a tour of the Jade Buddha Temple and a visit to the Children's Palace, where a performance by the schoolchildren may be in progress, plus time for shopping. A special dinner will be followed by an acrobatics show.
Pricing is from $2,445 per person; international airfare can be purchased separately.
"One cannot help but acknowledge this program's value," said Larry Greenman, manager of public relations and customer service for Victoria Cruises. "It's the best of both worlds, a top-notch vacation at an unbeatable price."