We asked for a handful of practical tips for tourists new to China and eager to explore it while on one of our fabulous tours. These tips are for the explorer inside you, and should be kept close as a guideline you ever desire to travel alone or in your own group, without a guide to take care of you.
Search for unforeseen destinations
Rather than hiking to China’s famed Yellow Mountain, or Huangshan in Anhui Province during the peak of travel season, try Jiuhua Shan in Anhui Province or Changbai Shan in Jilin province, which likewise offers great mountain vistas in China. Choose Dali, in Yunnan, to discover the historical pagodas as an alternative to neighbouring Lijiang, which has grown to be a little commercialised after being termed a UNESCO Heritage Site in ‘97. Then for The Great Wall if you’re journeying from Beijing: dodge Badaling’s excess of crowds and travel to Jinshanling, where mobs and marketers are scarce.
Dodge Travelling Throughout Chinese Public Breaks
Although you may have time off of work during National Week and Spring Festival, the two longest public holidays in China, so do several of the additional 1.4 billion people living throughout China. These periods are when ticket queues stretch for miles, tickets for planes and trains skyrocket in price, and finding a place to lodge in popular towns is extremely difficult. If thinkable, work throughout these breaks, then ask for Compensatory Time Off to take a trip during a less crowded period.
China is full of memento merchants at the side of the road and it’s quite common for tourists to be offered extraordinary amounts. A common guideline is to buy in the morning, as merchants like to close the first trade in the day and are more open to bargaining before noon. The ideal price can go down as far as a third off the price, so pretend to walk away if all else fails, as dealers will sometimes call you back if they feel they may miss a deal so don’t let them see you actually like the item.
Travel With a Blanket and Hot Water Bottle
If roaming to secluded places, bring a blanket and hot water bottle. Bottled liquid may not be so abundant in the rural areas, but there’s always boiling water, harmless to drink. When roaming by train, it’s best to carry a blanket as cut-rate beds in Chinese trains are infrequently changed between rest stops and some hostels or hotels won’t have the usual standard sheets you may be accustomed to.
Always Carry Toilet Paper
You can never be sure when it’ll be needed, especially when in the middle of nowhere, don’t forget how big China actually is. Community toilets in China frequently lack toilet paper and stalls, calling for you to sit on your heels above a hole in the ground. To make it a little more convenient the task a bit more tolerable, bring your own toilet paper, and antiseptic hand wash. Almost every single traveller taking part in tours around China has a communal lavatory story to tell.
Our priority is customer satisfaction, and to achieve this we aim to give you a personalised service. You can be assured that when booking with us there will be no hidden costs. We do not cut-corners to save money, and all hotels and restaurants are of a high standard and quality. To us you are an individual, not just a number. Our staff have either lived or travelled in China and Indochina, creating and personally running tours, for over 20 years. Our in-depth knowledge and understanding of people travelling to Asia is second to none.