A Grand Tour of China for Solo Travellers

A Grand Tour of China for Solo Travellers

Including Yangtze River Cruise

16 days from only £3,699pp

Selected departures in September & November 2020

Experience more with so much included

  • A comprehensive tour of China visiting its greatest cultural legacies, iconic monuments, astounding palaces and astonishing scenery
  • Visit the astonishing Great Wall of China, the only man-made monument visible from space
  • See the world-famous Terracotta Army and the less-visited underground museum
  • Enjoy a tour of the Chengdu Research Base of Giant Panda Breeding
  • Marvel at the Temple of Heaven and the imperial gardens at the Summer Palace in Beijing
  • See the Longshen Rice Terraces, a man-made wonder
  • Enjoy a five-star Yangtze River Cruise through the breathtaking Three Gorges, with full board
  • Travel through the world’s largest ship lock of the Three Gorges Dam
  • Tour Shanghai and take in the Jade Buddha temple, Yuyuan Gardens and the old British Consulate
  • Take a guided tour of Tiananmen Square and the amazing Forbidden City, the world’s largest concentration of preserved ancient wooden buildings
  • Travel from Shanghai to Beijing on one of China's high-speed trains
  • Cruise the world-famous Li River and visit the picturesque riverside town of Yangshuo
  • Return direct scheduled flights from the UK
  • Hand-picked accommodation rated four and five-stars, with daily breakfast and 14 meals including a Peking Duck banquet and a welcome dinner on the first night to get to know your travelling companions
  • Hotel porterage
  • The services of our experienced tour manager throughout
9.8 out of 10  
Read 16 Reviews
At a Glance
4 and 5-star hotel accommodation
3 nights on the RV Century Glory
Return flights & transfers
Programme of daily tours & visits
Travel on the world's fastest bullet train
28 meals: 14 breakfasts, 9 lunches & 5 dinners
Expert tour manager
Hotel porterage
Checked Luggage


Since the days of Marco Polo, China has fascinated our western minds in the most compelling way. The country’s immense size, almost unimaginable wealth and other-worldly culture have together woven an intoxicating and quite irresistible spell.

The Chinese today are living through an astonishing transformation. As well as being justly proud of their long history and unique cultural legacy, they’re keen to show you their huge achievements as a rapidly growing world superpower. China has always been a nation of superlatives. The most populous on earth, it’s also the fourth largest. Silk, tea, paper money, porcelain and gunpowder all originated here. Effectively closed to outsiders for most of its history, China has developed its own unique character, language and society.

At the heart of Beijing lies the Imperial Palace. Collectively called the ‘Forbidden City’, it contains a staggering 9,999 rooms. Adorned with paintings of dragons and phoenixes, carvings and inscriptions, it’s crowned by typically Chinese turned-up roofs with gold-hued tiles. Tiananmen Square, the final resting place of Chairman Mao, holds a staggering 600,000 people. The Summer Palace and Temple of Heaven are stunning in their simplicity and laden with symbolism. And beyond the city lies the stupendous Great Wall, the largest structure ever built by man and one of the new seven wonders of the world.

Two centuries before the founding of ancient Rome, Xian was already a world-class city and gateway to the Silk Road. Home to over a dozen dynasties, it houses the extraordinary Terracotta Army. First discovered by farmers digging a well, the life-size and remarkably preserved warriors all have their own individual features. They’ve guarded the tomb of the first Qin Emperor for more than two millennia.

Guilin has some of China’s most breathtaking scenery. Beautifully set around four lakes and two rivers, it’s surrounded by the karst limestone scenery of lush forest-covered peaks and pinnacles. You’ll also visit the extraordinary Longshen Rice Terraces, carved into the hills in their thousands over centuries by the hands of Yao tribesmen.

In Chengdu, you’ll see some of the world’s most endangered and enchanting animals – Panda bears. This is the leading Panda research and breeding centre in China. We’ll visit them in the morning while they’re still active, and before they sleep for the rest of the day after eating their fill of bamboo.

Our three-day cruise on the Yangtze is a welcome change of pace as our five-star ship, the RV Century Sun, navigates through the spectacular Three Gorges. Shanghai, China’s wealthiest city, is an intoxicating mix of colonial tradition and modern economic dynamism. The riverside Bund became one of the greatest trading centres of the world. Today this lovingly restored waterfront contrasts with the forest of skyscrapers that cover the skyline.

China is also home to one of the world’s great cuisines – with the ubiquitous Peking Duck from the north, chillies from the west and fruit and carp from the sub-tropical climate of the south. Real Chinese food is both a revelation and a gourmet paradise. In Britain our standard greeting is ‘How are you?’ In China, it’s ‘Have you eaten today?’

This tour is a remarkable journey of discovery of one of the world’s most ancient cultures, aspects of which are almost beyond our comprehension, blended with a remarkably stunning topography and a staggering pace of modernisation.

Your Itinerary

A Grand Tour of China

Price Includes

The price of this holiday is per person, based on one person in a twin/double room for sole occupancy. Price includes:

  • Flights to and from Shanghai
  • 14 nights’ accommodation in four-star hotels 
  • 3 nights on board a five-star Yangtze cruise ship RV Century Glory
  • Daily breakfast, 9 lunches and 6 dinners
  • All tours and entrance fees as described
  • All transfers
  • All touring as mentioned
  • All local accommodation taxes and airport/flight taxes
  • Four domestic flights and two rail journeys
  • Hotel porterage of one item of luggage per person 
  • The services of a Riviera Travel tour manager

Visa not included


On 30th January 2020 the World Health Organisation (WHO) declared Coronavirus as a Public Health Emergency of International Concern. This is following the Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO) advising against all but essential travel to mainland China.

This is an ongoing situation and the FCO/WHO advice could be amended at any point. We are carefully monitoring the situation and all travel advice.

We have and will continue to take direct advice from ABTA and the FCO.

If you are travelling with us to China from April onwards, we will contact you if there are any changes to your travel plans. Currently, all tours to China from April are planned to operate as normal.

For more information please go to www.gov.uk/foreign-travel-advice

Useful Information

Fact File

  • Currency: Yuan
  • Deposit: £200 per person
  • Flight Time: Approx.  10 hrs (outbound) and 12 hrs (inbound)
  • Language: Chinese
  • Time Zone: GMT+7 (+8 during winter months)
  • Country: China

Visa Information

Along with a valid passport, UK citizens must have a visa in order to travel to China. For the most up-to-date passport and visa information visit www.gov.uk/foreign-travel-advice/china/entry-requirements

Visa cost is £151 per person. Applications are initially made online, however you must also go in person to a Chinese Visa Application Centre in either London, Manchester or Edinburgh for biometric data (fingerprints) to be collected. Full details of how and when to apply will be sent with your booking confirmation.

We are unable to accept responsibility if you are unable to travel because you have not complied with any passport/entry/immigration requirements.

Please note that visa costs may be subject to change.

Water Levels

Itinerary may be subject to change depending on domestic flight timings and Yangtze & Li river water levels.


All included lunches and dinners are Chinese meals and are set menus of several courses and dishes shared around tables of 6-10 persons, one local beer or soft drink is normally included as is unlimited Chinese tea. Breakfasts are buffet style with western food options.


Hotel beds can be ‘firm’ in China and rooms are normally twin-bedded. Requests for double beds can be made but not guaranteed in advance.


There is no specific health advice for this tour, though it is always advisable to contact your GP six to eight weeks prior to travel. For mobility related queries please contact the reservations team.


We want to ensure you make the correct choice before you book your holiday with us. If you have any concerns regarding the suitability of the holiday due to reduced mobility we would encourage you to call us to discuss these concerns. General information on mobility in connection with our tours can be found here.


Transfer Times

All transfer times listed here are approximate, and dependent on traffic. If you have a question regarding transfer times please don't hesitate to contact us

Arrival airport First hotel location Transfer time Final hotel location Departure airport Transfer time
Shanghai Pudong International Airport Shanghai 30 mins Shanghai Shanghai Pudong International Airport 30 mins

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