Remarkable experiences. extraordinary value.

Journey to the Great Cities Of China And Japan

27 Nights featuring Xi’an, Chengdu, Guilin, Shanghai, Beijing, Seoul, Kobe and Tokyo

Includes airfare, hotel, tours, baggage handling, and transfers

Departs: October 14, 2019

About This Journey

This Journey is our most comprehensive tour of China, South Korea, and Japan. Visiting historical monuments, countryside landscapes, animal sanctuaries and modern cities, this Journey is certainly an immersive experience you won’t want to miss! In China you will visit the Terracotta Warriors in Xi’an, the Panda Breeding Center in Chengdu, take a cruise through the mystical landscapes of the Li River in Guilin, be entertained in the modern city of Shanghai, and walk along the Great Wall of China near Beijing. Throughout this experience, you will learn the region’s customs, enjoy the flavorful dishes of each city, and try your hand at local art. You will explore Seoul and Jeju Island in South Korea, and Kobe, Mt. Fuji, and Tokyo in Japan. After disembarking in Tokyo, you’ll spend the day learning the ancient Japanese traditions of Taiko drumming, sushi rolling, origami and more! With 27 nights to explore the rich cultures of Asia, you will learn the nuanced differences of each region that makes every place so unique.

Visits: Xi’an, Chengdu, Guilin, Shanghai, Seoul (Incheon), Beijing (Tianjin), Jeju Island, Kobe, Mt Fuji, Tokyo, Celebrity Cruises, Celebrity Millennium; Fall-Journey; SASE; Adventure

Related Videos

Journey to the Great Cities Of China And Japan

Day Port Arrival Departure
1 Arrive in Xi’an, China and transfer to hotel. Evening welcome dinner.
2 Xi’an – Full-day tour of Terracotta Warriors and Horses Museum & more. Evening Tang Dynasty Dancing Show and dumpling dinner.
3 Xi’an – Tour the City Wall, visit the Tang Dynasty Museum and practice your Chinese calligraphy & more.
4 Xi’an to Chengdu, China – Check out of hotel. Fly to Chengdu & hotel check-in. Enjoy a traditional “hot pot” dinner and evening Sichuan folklore show.
5 Chengdu – Tour the Sichuan Culinary Museum and take a cooking class. Afternoon city tour.
6 Chengdu – Tour the Panda Breeding Center. Afternoon at leisure.
7 Chengdu to Guilin, China – Check out of hotel. Fly to Guilin, China & hotel check-in.
8 Guilin – Morning cruise on the Li River with included buffet lunch. Afternoon in Yangshuo at leisure.
9 Guilin – Tour Reed Flute Cave and Elephant Trunk Hill. Afternoon at leisure.
10 Guilin to Shanghai, China – Hotel check-out. Fly to Shanghai & hotel check-in. Evening dinner & acrobatic show.
11 Shanghai, China – Tour to Suzhou and Jixi
12 Shanghai, China – Tour to Yuyuan Garden & Jade Buddha Temple. Evening farewell dinner.
13 Shanghai, China – Check out of Hotel and board ship. 5:00 PM
14 At Sea
15 Seoul (Incheon), South Korea  7:00 AM  7:00 PM
16 At Sea
17 Beijing (Tianjin), China – Exclusive Shore Excursion 6:00 AM
18 Beijing (Tianjin), China – Exclusive Shore Excursion
19 Beijing (Tianjin), China – Exclusive Shore Excursion 6:00 PM
20 At Sea
21 Jeju Island, South Korea  8:00 AM  6:00 PM
22 At Sea
23 Kobe, Japan  9:00 AM
24 Kobe, Japan  5:00 pm
25 Mt Fuji (Shimizu), Japan 11:00 AM  7:00 pm
26 Tokyo (Yokohama), Japan 9:00 AM
27 Tokyo (Yokohama), Japan – Full-day Japanese cultural tour & hotel check-in.
28 Tokyo (Yokohama), Japan – Hotel check-out, transfer to the airport for return flight.

Land Highlights

Day 1 – Arrive Xi’an: Arrive in Xi’an and transfer to hotel. Relax after your long flight before joining your fellow travelers for a welcome dinner. (D)

Terracotta Warriors

Terracotta Warriors

Day 2 – Xi’an: After breakfast at the hotel, enjoy a full day tour that will include a visit to the Terracotta Warriors and Horses Museum, an acclaimed UNESCO World Heritage Site. One of the main attractions in China, this impressive exhibition showcases the 2,000-year-old clay statues who kept guard over the tomb until its discovery in 1974. After a Chinese lunch, we will visit the Big Wild Goose Pagoda which is a well-preserved Buddhist pagoda dating back to 652 AD.  In the evening, experience a spectacular Tang Dynasty Music and Dance Show where performers proudly demonstrate their culture, history, music, art and traditions while you feast on an authentic dumpling dinner. (B, L, D)

Xi’an City Wall

Xi’an City Wall

Day 3 – Xi’an: Start the day with a tour of the Xi’an City Wall, one of the oldest and best preserved city walls in China. Here, we will learn about the gates, tunnels, watchtowers and battlements of this ancient structure. Then, practice your hand at Chinese calligraphy! Explore the Tang Dynasty Museum and the Shaanxi Provincial Museum, home to treasures and artifacts throughout China’s thousands of years of history. (B, L)

Chinese hot pot

Chinese hot pot

Day 4 – Xi’an to Chengdu: After breakfast at the hotel, check out and transfer to the airport for your flight to Chengdu, the capital of China’s Sichuan province. In the evening, we will enjoy a traditional hotpot dinner. Comparable to a western broth fondue, Chinese hotpot has been a traditional meal for over 1,000 years and is especially popular during the winter months. Each table will have a simmering “hot pot” of flavorful broth surrounded by plates of raw vegetables, meats, dumplings and other local delicacies. You may pick and choose your ingredients as you please. This fun and interactive dining tradition is sure to be a delightful (and delicious) experience! After dinner, we will enjoy a Sichuan folklore show, complete with traditional costumes, music and performers. (B, D)

Day 5 – Chengdu: Today we will visit the Sichuan Culinary Museum and learn about local cuisine, wine, tea and gardens. Then, a professional chef will guide us through a cooking class of traditional Sichuan dishes, followed by lunch. In the afternoon, your guide will lead you on an exploration of the ancient streets of Chengdu. (B, L)

Chengdu Research Base of Giant Panda Breeding

Chengdu Research Base of Giant Panda Breeding

Day 6 – Chengdu: This morning, visit the Chengdu Research Base of Giant Panda Breeding to see these adorable animals from a new perspective. This facility has created a safe space for the giant pandas to breed and rear their young. We will learn about the conservation efforts underway for giant and other pandas, as well as other endangered animals from the region. After lunch, you will have free time to relax at the hotel or explore Chengdu on your own. (B, L)

Day 7 – Chengdu to Guilin: After breakfast at the hotel, check out and transfer to the airport for your flight to Guilin. After checking in at the hotel, you will have free time to settle in before an included dinner. (B, D)

 Li River

Li River

Day 8 – Guilin: Set sail on the scenic Li River for a morning of panoramic cruising! Take a breath of fresh air and appreciate the mystic landscape of rounded karst hills, bamboo groves and local villages. It is truly a breathtaking scene, often titled the most beautiful in China! While onboard, enjoy an included buffet lunch.  Arriving in the small town of Yangshuo, you will have some free time before returning to Guilin. (B, L)

Reed Flute Caves

Reed Flute Caves

Day 9 – Guilin: This morning, visit the Reed Flute Cave, a natural Limestone Cavern that has been an attraction to visitors for over 1200 years. You will also visit the nearby Elephant Trunk Hill, a rock formation that, with a little imagination, resembles an elephant drinking from the river. After lunch, the rest of the day is at your leisure to shop, explore or watch the never-ending action on the nearby river. (B, L)

Day 10 – Guilin to Shanghai: After breakfast at the hotel, check out and transfer to the airport for your flight to Shanghai. You will have time to check in and settle into your hotel before heading out to dinner. Then, sit back, relax, and enjoy the show as we watch China’s best acrobatic performers show off their impressive skills and daring stunts. (B, D)

Town of Suzhou

Town of Suzhou

Day 11 – Shanghai: Today we will visit the oasis of Suzhou, a city located to the west of Shanghai. As 42% of the area is covered by water, this ‘Venice of the Orient’ presents a beautiful blend of gardens, ponds, bridges, streams, temples and pathways.  While touring this quaint town, you will explore the Garden of Master of Nets (one of the finest gardens in China), as well as a Silk Spinning Factory, where you can learn about the silk-making process. Following lunch, transfer to the tranquil village of Jinxi, known for its canals and ancient waterways, before returning to your hotel in Shanghai. (B, L)

Yuyuan Garden

Yuyuan Garden

Day 12 – Shanghai: Today, you will spend the day discovering Shanghai. Your tour includes a visit to Yuyuan Garden, an extensive Chinese garden dating back to the 16th century, before sitting down to your included lunch. Then, at the Jade Buddha Temple, admire ancient paintings, Buddhist scriptures and architecture on your way to viewing the two Buddha statues, which were intricately carved from whole white jade. Tonight, enjoy a special farewell dinner with the group. (B, L, D)

Day 13 – Shanghai Embarkation: After breakfast, check out of the hotel and transfer to the port, where you will board the Celebrity Millennium for a 14-night cruise to China, South Korea and Japan. (B)

Day 14–16 – Cruise onboard the Celebrity Millennium (see below for port highlights)

Temple of Heaven

Temple of Heaven

Day 17 – Beijing Shore ExcursionAfter breakfast on board, set off with your local guide on the most exclusive three-day Shore Excursion to Beijing. This program has been specifically designed for Enrichment Journey guests and with its visits to the most important sites, combined with historical, cultural and culinary adventures, you will experience Beijing like no one else onboard. Upon arrival in Beijing, you will check in to your centrally located hotel. After lunch, set off for the Temple of Heaven, the first of several UNESCO World Heritage sites you will see. This imperial complex is considered a masterpiece of architecture and landscape design. While at the Temple, you will have a private demonstration by a shadow-boxing master who will demonstrate the magical secret of Tai Chi Chuan.  This evening, you will be treated to an unforgettable demonstration of martial arts before sitting down to a Peking Duck dinner. Peking is one of several former names this city has had in its 3000+ years in existence. (L, D)

The Great Wall of China

The Great Wall of China

Day 18 – Beijing Shore ExcursionMost tour groups visit the Great Wall of China section closest to Beijing, which is the always-crowded Juyongguan. However, it is not part of the original wall but is a replica of what once stood there. We will journey further from Beijing where you will see one of the most authentic, best preserved original sections of the Great Wall. You will have time to explore the area and walk along the wall. Then, to get a different perspective, we have included a cable car ride which will show you a section of the wall from above. This will be a check mark on your bucket list! Returning to Beijing, you will view some of the city’s most modern construction with photo stops at some of the most interesting venues built for the 2008 summer Olympics, including the Birds Nest and Water Cube. (B, L, D)

Forbidden City

Forbidden City

Day 19 – Beijing Shore Excursion – Pictures cannot prepare you for the size and scale of several of the sites you will see today. On our way to the Forbidden City, you will drive through Tiananmen Square. At 109 acres, it is one of the largest squares in the world and home to the Monument to the People’s Heroes, the Great Hall of the People, the National Museum of China and the Mausoleum of Mao Zedong. A site of great cultural significance in China’s history, it is perhaps best remembered as the location of the 1989 suppression of a pro-democracy movement. Adjacent to the square is the Forbidden City, where we will begin the walking portion of our tour. Once the imperial palace, it is listed by UNESCO as the largest collection of preserved ancient wooden structures in the world. After your visit to the Forbidden City, you will tour the historical Hutong area by rickshaw. To top off your Beijing immersion, you will visit a local home where your hostess will show you how to make dumplings before sitting down for lunch. As you return to the ship, located approximately a 2-hour drive from Beijing, relax and know that you truly saw the best of Beijing. Similar Shore Excursion programs, which offer less authentic experiences, begin at over $740 per person. Our special program for you is included. (B, L)

Day 20–26 – Continue your cruise onboard the Celebrity Millennium (see below for port highlights)

Day 27 – Tokyo Disembarkation – Enjoy breakfast onboard, then disembark the Celebrity Millennium and meet your guide for an immersive cultural tour. Begin the day learning about Taiko, a traditional Japanese drum which has been used in festivals for over 2,000 years. You will learn how to play Taiko from a professional performer while learning about its origin and influence on Japanese culture. Next, head to a renowned cooking studio to try your hand at making traditional Japanese food such as sushi, teriyaki, okonomiyaki and more. After lunch, head to the peaceful setting of a traditional Japanese garden where you will practice your skills in the art of origami and partake in a Japanese tea ceremony. We will then check-in to the hotel and have some free time to relax and freshen up before heading out for dinner. We will stop at the Roppongi Hills Observatory along the way, to take in a breathtaking view of the city skyline. Then, finish the night with a farewell dinner at a restaurant specializing in tempura. (L, D)

Day 28 – Tokyo – Check out of the hotel and transfer to the airport for your flight home. (B)

For meals not included in your land programs, all hotels chosen include a restaurant on property where you may relax and enjoy a meal. In addition, your guide is available to make suggestions on nearby dining, shopping or sightseeing.


Port Highlights

Seoul (Incheon), South Korea: Located at the mouth of the Yangtze River, this seaport is a vigorous modern metropolis with proud Chinese heritage and diverse influences including French, British and Russian. Your Shanghai cruise is not complete without strolling through the colorful Bund district, a colonial-era street with neoclassical and art deco architecture, or visiting the Jade Buddha Temple or the beautiful Yu Gardens.  From authentic Chinese and Cantonese cuisine to local teahouses, you’ll find five-star gourmet and time-honored traditional offerings to choose from, as well as endless international food options. Make your way to Nanjing Road and browse the hundreds of shops lining the expansive pedestrian walkway for keepsakes and trinkets. Or head over to the Old City God’s Temple Market for authentic Chinese souvenirs.

Beijing (Tianjin), China: In Beijing there will be a three-day, two-night guided shore excursion, specifically created exclusively for Enrichment Journeys guests! Highlights include Temple of Heaven, the Great Wall, Tiananmen Square, Forbidden City and more. See Day 17-19 in the land packages above for more details.

Jeju Island, South Korea: South Korea’s tropical island paradise will enchant you with its sandy beaches, swaying palm trees and amazing volcanic landscape. Need a break from your beach towel? Waterfalls, museums, folk villages, scuba diving, hiking and festivals galore will keep you busy. Explore the colorful coral and sea life with a scuba dive off the coast of laid-back Seogwipo. Take an underground stroll through the world’s longest lava-tube cave at Manjanggul.

Kobe, Japan: Kobe is the fifth-largest city in Japan and is the capital city of Hyogo Prefecture on the southern side of the main island of Honshu. Its name comes from “kanbe”, an archaic title for supporters of the city’s Ikuta Shrine. The earliest written records regarding the region come from the Nihon Shoki, which describes the founding of the Ikuta Shrine by Empress Jing in AD 201. For most of its history, the area was never a single political entity, even during the Tokugawa Period, when the port was controlled directly by the Tokugawa Shogunate. Kobe did not exist in its current form until its founding in 1889. Kobe was one of the cities to open for trade with the West following the end of the policy of seclusion and has since been known as a cosmopolitan port city. While the 1995 Great Hanshin Earthquake diminished much of Kobe’s prominence as a port city, it remains Japan’s fourth busiest container port. The city is the point of origin and namesake of Kobe beef as well as the site of one of Japan’s most famous hot spring resorts, Arima Onsen. Kobe is also your gateway to Kyoto, Japan’s ancient imperial capital, and the nation’s cultural and spiritual center.

Mount Fuji (Shimizu), Japan: On clear days, particularly in winter, Mount Fuji (Fuji-san in Japanese) is visible from as far as Tokyo, 60 miles away. When Japan’s highest mountain is capped with snow, it’s a picture-postcard perfect volcanic cone. One of the best-known symbols of Japan, this iconic mountain has been considered sacred since ancient times and was even forbidden to women until the early 1900s.

Journey to the Great Cities Of China And Japan

Included Features

  • Roundtrip international airfare, transfers and baggage handling
  • Twelve-night pre-cruise land program in China
    • Xi’an, China – three-night hotel stay
      • Welcome Dinner
      • Full-day tour of Terracotta Warriors and Big Wild Goose Pagoda
      • Tang Dynasty Dancing Show and Dinner
      • Full-day tour of City Wall, Provincial Museum and Tang Dynasty Arts Museum
    • Chengdu, China – three-night hotel stay
      • Hotpot Dinner and Sichuan Folklore Show
      • Full-day tour of Sichuan Culinary Museum and the ancient streets of Chengdu
      • Half-day visit to the Panda Breeding Center
    • Guilin, China – three-night hotel stay
      • Full-day Li River cruise and visit to the town of Yangshuo
      • Half-day visit to the Reed Flute Cave and Elephant Trunk Hill
    • Shanghai, China – three-night hotel stay
      • Dinner and Acrobatic Show
      • Full-day tour of Suzhou and Jixi
      • Full-day city tour of Shanghai
      • Farewell Dinner
  • One-night post-cruise land program in Tokyo
    • Tokyo, Japan – one-night hotel stay
      • Full-day Japanese cultural tour
      • Farewell Dinner
  • Tour Leader throughout land program and Local Tour Hosts during included tours
  • Most meals while on tour (see itinerary highlights) and all meals while onboard
  • 14-night sailing aboard Celebrity Millennium
    • Exclusive three-day, two-night guided shore excursion in Beijing, specifically created for Enrichment Journeys guests only.
    • SPECIAL OFFER UNTIL 8/7! Receive up to All 4 Extras: Gratuities, Beverages, Wi-Fi & $300 Onboard Credit (Veranda and higher).
    • Choose 2 of the following: Classic Beverage Package, Pre-paid Gratuities, Unlimited Internet or $300 Onboard Credit per stateroom

Journey to the Great Cities Of China And Japan

What to Expect on Your Trip


During the land portion of your trip, most days will include full-day tours. The overall pace is rather quick, as there is muc h to see in these exotic regions. A healthy mix of visits to historical sites and time to enjoy the landscape and scenery will round out your immersive cultural experience. Two meals are included most days during your land program, allowing the third meal to be at your leisure. All hotels will have a restaurant on the property where you may dine, allowing you to have the evening to relax or explore independently. If you wish to go out, your guide is available to make suggestions for nearby dining.

During the cruise, you will have a mix of relaxing days at sea and exciting days on land to explore the port cities. You may choose from optional shore excursions, which will allow for cultural immersion, exotic meals, and numerous activities.

Physical Activity

The land portion of the trip should be considered active and includes a considerable amount of walking. Enrichment Journeys will do everything in our power to ensure comfort through our third-party providers, including air-conditioned buses and comfortable accommodations where applicable. However, some areas cannot be accessed by coach, so our drivers will get you as close to sites as is legally allowed. Sensible, rubber-soled walking shoes are strongly recommended. Historical sites often do not have elevators, escalators or ramps due to the age of the building/structure. Steps can be steep and uneven. Wheelchair access at many sites is limited to extremely limited. Based on crowds and traffic, the order of visits may be changed. A fold-up wheelchair may be able to be stored on the bus but requires prior arrangements. Motorized wheelchairs and scooters cannot be accommodated on this group program. Guests must be able to transfer from their chair to the transportation. Guides/drivers are not allowed to lift or push wheelchairs, so guests requiring physical assistance must travel with a companion who can assist. For the cruise portion of the trip, passengers will board and leave the ship up stairways and gangways, and you may have to walk a moderate distance to transfer to train, bus and car stations. Time spent on the road and traveling can be long, so you will need to be prepared for stretches of downtime in between destinations.

Cultural Focus

A trip of a lifetime through mainland China is not to be missed. The pre-cruise program will include instrumental music on instruments you may have never heard of, artistry of silk and net production, historic architecture including The Great Wall and several other UNESCO World Heritage Sites. Then, in South Korea and Japan, you will learn about these other unique cultures, including a variety of traditional and cultural activities during your tour in Tokyo. Throughout your Journey, you will encounter dishes and ingredients typical to each region that you may not have encountered before, and you will be introduced to local artistry. Enrichment Journeys encourages an open mind when in unique situations and meeting people abroad. Sometimes the attractions, beaches, and cities themselves can be crowded, especially while on the cruise.

Unique Factors

If you have special needs or physical limitations, you will need to check in with your Personal Vacation Manager before booking the trip. Asia has damp and cold weather in Beijing in March, while Shanghai is damp with cool temperatures. The temperature can vary between day and night, so pack accordingly with items that can be layered. Some guests may wish to have raincoat or windbreaker with them.

Recommended Reading List

Looking to learn more about the cultures, lifestyle, and fun found in foreign destinations you are about to visit? We recommend these following books:

Fiction/Personal Accounts

Farewell the Dragon by Lee Barckmann (China)

American Born Chinese by Gene Luen Yang (China)

Pachinko (National Book Award Finalist) by Min Jin Lee (South Korea)

The Frozen Hours by Jeff Shaara (South Korea)

The Great Passage by Shion Miura (Japan)


Travel Guides

Lonely Planet Discover China

DK Eyewitness Guide: China

Insight Guides: South Korea

Etiquette Guide to Japan: Know the Rules that Make the Difference!



Lost Laowai Blog (China):

Two Wandering Soles (South Korea):

Surviving in Japan (Japan):



National Geographic’s China videos

Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon,(2000) directed by Ang Lee

Life of Pi , (2012) directed by Ang Lee

The Wedding Banquet, (1993) directed by Ang Lee

Eat Drink Man Woman, (1994) directed by Ang Lee


Enrichment Journeys is committed to providing remarkable experiences at an extraordinary value. As a result, airlines and routes are selected to maximize that value and may involve multiple stops and extended layovers versus non-stop or direct flights. Passengers wishing to utilize specific carriers, or direct, or non-stop, or Business Class flights, or to extend their time in any of our beginning or ending destination cities may do so by contacting their Travel Agent or Enrichment Journeys directly. We are pleased to provide Custom Airfare arrangements for an additional $50 per person. This charge allows you to add and/or customize your flights and can be applied toward any flights or upgrades you choose to purchase. The $50 charge must be paid prior to receiving an air quote.

Routing Transportation Approximate Travel Time
Xi’an – Chengdu Airline 2 Hours
Chengdu–Guilin Airline 2 Hours
Guilin–Shanghai Airline 2.5 Hours

Journey to the Great Cities Of China And Japan

Want to arrive a day early to Xi’an or extend your stay in Tokyo?
Enrichment Journeys can accommodate pre and post hotel extensions,
just ask your Personal Vacation Manager.

Book a Veranda or higher and receive complimentary Pre-paid Gratuities from Enrichment Journeys.

Choose 2 of the following: Classic Beverage Package, Pre-paid Gratuities, Unlimited Internet or $300 Onboard Credit per stateroom

Book a Veranda or higher and receive All 4 Extras:

  • Classic Beverage Package for two guests
  • Pre-paid Gratuities for two guests
  • Unlimited internet for two guests
  • $300 Onboard Credit per stateroom

Guests in the same staterooms must select the same option(s). Click here to view Celebrity Terms and Conditions ». Offer Expires 8/7/19. Additional terms and conditions apply, call for more information.

Receive 10% off all shore excursions from Shore Excursions Group!

Journey to the Great Cities Of China And Japan

Dates & Prices
10/14/2019 Retail Value  EJ Price Savings Per Person Single Rates

Prices are in USD.

Interested in the land program without the cruise? Call us for a quote.

Air Add-Ons
City Add-On City Add-On City Add-On
Atlanta $450 Los Angeles $0 San Diego $250
Boston $250 Miami $500 San Francisco $350
Chicago $350 New York-Newark $400 Seattle $250
Dallas-Ft. Worth $350 New York-JFK $350 Tampa $450
Houston Intercontinental $600 Phoenix $300 Washington – Dulles $600
– Business Class Air Available on Request
– Additional Gateways Available on Request
– Air Add-On Rates are subject to change without notice. While we try to include the most common airports by default, we have many clients coming from different parts of the country. If you desire air from an unlisted airport, you must first reserve your Enrichment Journey with one of the listed airports as your default gateway and then ask, or have your Travel Agent ask, Enrichment Journeys to provide a quote for your preferred gateway.

All prices on our website and e-Journey Travel Guide are subject to change without notice. While we make every effort to provide you the most accurate and up-to-date information, occasionally, a trip or pricing category may be misprinted or unavailable at the time of booking. In the event of an incorrect price due to typographical, photographic, or technical error, or error in pricing information received from our suppliers, we retain the right to correct the price and to refuse or cancel any bookings placed at the incorrect price. In addition, all offers, prices, and conditions of sale may be subject to change without notice including tours, included features, highlights, minimum or maximum stays, itinerary, times in port, and/or other conditions/restrictions.

Journey to the Great Cities Of China And Japan

The following hotel list is preliminary and subject to change. Although we contract for hotels a year or more in advance, unforeseen circumstances do occasionally require a change of hotel. Should it be necessary to change a hotel, one of equal quality or value will be substituted and you will receive confirmed hotel information with your final itinerary. Please note that hotel ratings are based on TripAdvisor ratings and are subject to change.

Grand Mercure Xi’an

Tel:+86 29 87928888
319 Dongxin Street, Shaanxi Province 710004, Xi’an, China

The Grand Mercure Xi’an on Renmin Square is surrounded by serene courtyards and enchanting gardens which encapsulate the historic riches of the region. Fifty years of Renmin Square history is reflected on the magnificent décor of the hotel’s 194 guestrooms and suites. Combining chic Chinese design with modern touches, the rooms are fully equipped for comfort and convenience: room safe, satellite television and Wi-Fi access.

Sofitel Chengdu Taihe

Tel:+86 28 66669999
15 Binjiang Middle Road Sichuan Province, 610016 Chengdu, China

Each Sofitel is a unique blend of the French art de vivre and local refinement. Sofitel Chengdu Taihe welcomes you to the Land of Heaven, where Chinese modernity meets Sichuan tradition – all mingled with French passion and abundant hospitality.

Sofitel Chengdu luxury hotel is ideally located in the center of the city on the picturesque Jinjiang River. The hotel is a 20-minute drive from Chengdu International Airport and a 15-minute walk to Tianfu Square and the city’s commercial centers.

Lijiang Waterfall Hotel

1 North Shanhu Road, Guilin, China, 541001

Guilin Lijiang Waterfall Hotel is located in the center of Guilin city, “Center Landscape Zone near both Mountain and River”, which is very close to the beautiful Lijiang River, green-waving Sequoia Lake, the badge of Guilin, the Elephant Trunk Hill, the “Hall of Guilin”- the Central Square, and the prosperous Zhengyang Commercial Street. Walk out of the hotel to feel the bustling Guilin, and enter into the hotel to enjoy the tranquility. The hotel integrates business and entertainment functions 15 miles away from the airport.

This hotel is also recorded in the World Guinness Record featuring a unique large man-made waterfall. The impressive waterfall is named “Galaxy in the Ninth Heaven” and boast 236 feet in width and a falling height of 147 feet. It is a must-see night scene in Guilin for all tourists.

Hotel Equatorial Shanghai

Tel:+86 21 6248 1688
No.65 Yan’an West Road, Jing’an District, Shanghai 200040, China

Hotel Equatorial Shanghai is strategically located at Jing’an in the heart of downtown Shanghai. The 506 guest rooms and suites offer stunning city views, and have been beautifully furnished to ensure guests a comfortable and relaxing stay. Wi-Fi is available throughout the hotel. Themed specialty restaurants provide delicious Chinese and western cuisine skillfully prepared by supremely qualified chefs.

The well-recognized Shanghai International Club Fitness Centre is situated on the 4th floor, easily accessible to all patrons. The centre offers a range of top-of-the-line fitness facilities from Life Fitness, a tennis hard court, the Fei Spa and an indoor heated pool which boasts a breathtaking view of Jing’an.

Shangri-La’s China World Hotel, Beijing

Tel:(86 10) 6505 2266
No 1 Jianguomenwai Avenue, Beijing, 100004, China

Stepping into the lobby of Shangri-La’s China World Hotel, Beijing, you feel like you’ve just walked into a miniature Forbidden City. Filled with Ming and Qing era style artwork, the red and gold chamber welcomes you with a grandeur worthy of royalty. Arriving at your room, you are drawn to the full-size window where you are rewarded with a stunning view of the Beijing cityscape. The hotel anchors the prestigious China World Trade Centre, Central Business District, and is attached to the China World Mall. Looking down from your lofty perch at the glittering skyscrapers, you relish the thought of all the top tourist attractions you plan to visit in Beijing. The Forbidden City, the Great Wall and Tiananmen Square are all within easy reach of the hotel. When you return from your city adventures, the hotel’s live and classical orchestra serenades and sets the mood for majestic dreams. Royalty has never left the capital. Welcome to Shangri-La China World Hotel, Beijing.

Grand Nikko Tokyo Daiba Hotel

Tel:+81 3-5500-6711
2-6-1 Daiba, Minato 135-8701, Tokyo, Japan

Located not far from both the Haneda Airport and the heart of Tokyo, the Grand Nikko Tokyo Daiba Hotel is conveniently located and has all the amenities a traveler could want. Lounge by the pool, make an appointment at the spa, or take a run at the gym during your down time. The Grand Nikko Tokyo Daiba also has a beautiful view of the Tokyo Bay and Rainbow Bridge. It’s only a few miles from the center of Tokyo and the Imperial Palace.

Celebrity Millennium

Cruise Line: Celebrity

Since its inception in 1989, Celebrity has held true to its original commitment of taking the very best aspects of classic, elegant cruising and updating them to reflect current lifestyles. In 1997, they merged with Royal Caribbean International to form Royal Caribbean Cruises Ltd. What sets Celebrity apart from other vacation choices today is the cruise line’s passionate dedication to providing guests with a cruise experience that embodies modern luxury. This has become the definition of Celebrity Cruises, and has set the worldwide standard for today’s expression of what first made cruising famous — high quality, superior design, spacious accommodations, grand style, attentive service and exceptional cuisine. Celebrity Cruises’ iconic “X” is the mark of modern luxury, with its cool, contemporary design and warm spaces; dining experiences where the design of the venues is as important as the cuisine; and the amazing service that only Celebrity can provide, all providing an unmatchable vacation experience.

Ship: Millennium

A favorite of many vacationers, Celebrity Millennium® includes many award-winning Solstice® Class features. She’s been renewed with spa-inspired AquaClass® staterooms, the AquaClass signature restaurant, Blu, and the addition of verandas to her chic Celebrity Suites. There is no better way to experience the exotic beauty of Asia and the South Pacific than aboard Celebrity Millennium. Out of the ordinary? Definitely.

Journey to the Great Cities Of China And Japan

Before You Go

Money Matters

How you handle your currency and financials while on the trip is up to you. Some people prefer to exchange all their money in advance, while others will rely solely on credit cards. Consider calling your bank ahead of time to make them aware of your international travel, especially when using cards or withdrawing money.

ATM Machines

These are often readily available, especially in major cities. Some will charge fees on top of what your hometown bank may charge for using ATMs abroad. Look for well-marked machines that have the Visa or MasterCard symbols.

Foreign Banks

Currency can be exchanged at most banks, if needed. Ask a local host or tour manager if there is a nearby bank that is open.

Credit Cards

During your trip, you’ll find that most major credit cards are accepted. Call your specific card issuer ahead of time to find out its limitations and benefits overseas.


Do be aware that some additional charges for mini-bars, laundry and room service will not be included in the tour package. Plan accordingly for these extra charges.

Packing Guidelines

Pack as simply as possible for easy transfers and customs screenings. Check with your domestic and international carriers regarding baggage guidelines, allowances, and check for additional fees. All bags will be screened before boarding flights and the cruise ship.

Luggage Screening Process

To pass through screening, have liquids either in small containers and bagged, or in checked luggage. All valuables necessary for the trip should be on your person at all times, if possible. This includes medications and documentation. We recommend one main bag and a carry-on, per airline guidelines for weight and size.


Have all your bags labeled with your name and address clearly marked. Add something to you luggage that is recognizable in the event your bags are misplaced. You may also consider marking your bags with “Enrichment Journeys” for efficiency.

Carry-on items

In many countries, including the US, large liquid containers are not allowed in carry-ons. On the way back into the states, food or agriculture items are prohibited. If you have questions about a certain item, visit for a list of items that cannot be packed.

What to pack

Basics and layers are key to a comfortable Journey. Be sure to check the weather in the destinations you will visit, and pack accordingly. There are always unpredictable variables as well, so make sure you have one sturdy jacket and an outfit for a formal occasion too, just in case.

Here are a few key items to take on your trip:

  • Raincoat/poncho
  • Hooded jacket/fleece pullover
  • Pants with pockets
  • Skirt with pockets
  • Hat with visor & sunscreen/bug spray
  • Warm socks
  • Sturdy sandals
  • Practical shoes for walking/easy hiking
  • Extra pair of prescription sunglasses and/or glasses (if needed)


Have back-ups for everything to avoid disappointment. Charge batteries in advance and bring extra film or digital memory cards. If bringing a high-end camera, consider investing in insurance to protect your asset.

Cell phones

Some cell phones will work overseas, but incur additional charges for the use. Choose whether you would like to add an international plan by calling your carrier, or consider purchasing a pay-as-you-go phone overseas. However, in some destinations, many smartphones and tablets can pick up wireless internet for free.

Your Health and Comfort

Protecting the Value of Your Travel Investment

Enrichment Journeys offers a comprehensive travel insurance package you can purchase alongside your trip. It eases the mind and lets you cancel your trip for a covered reason up until the departure date with a full refund of the Journey.

The insurance covers a wide variety of incidents, including travel delay, emergency medical services, and even baggage delay. You will also receive a pre-existing medical conditions waiver if travel insurance is purchased within 14 days of your initial deposit. For a full list of coverage provided, visit the FAQ section of the website.

Medical Issues and Handicaps

As with any extensive trip abroad, our excursions with Enrichment Journeys will require some physical capabilities, including transfers from cruise ships, walking on cobblestone streets and navigating through some busy cities with guides. Although we encourage all types of travelers to join us, we do ask you are aware of your own physical limitations. Unfortunately, we cannot provide individual care to those who may have walkers, wheelchairs or other aids. Enrichment Journeys also cannot accommodate pregnant women past their six month gestation period.

Please speak with on of our Personal Vacation Managers to see if certain itineraries are suitable for you and your needs. We are happy to suggest other viable options for you that are more accessible.

Per the requirements of the Americans with Disabilities Act, travelers have the right to be reasonably accommodated in terms of tours in public situations. However, the laws do not apply for trips and outside the United States. So you must let Enrichment Journeys know ahead of time of any physical limitations, including information added to our questionnaire that needs to be filled out by all passengers. Failure to inform Enrichment Journeys of these limitations could result in refusal to participate, whether it be at the airport through the airline, on board the ship or at the accommodations booked.

If you have any sort of prescription medication, this should be a number one priority in packing. Bring extra, just in case. A small medical kit is also advisable for quick access to remedy minor aches and pains.

While on Tour

Airport transfers

Airport transfers are included as part of your Enrichment Journey. Local representatives will advise you of the departure time from your hotel the night before departure. Generally speaking, arrangements have been made to have you at the airport approximately three hours in advance of departure, though this may vary depending on local circumstances. At the end of the cruise, an airport transfer will also be provided. Please advise your Personal Vacation Manager if you do not require transfer arrangements at the time of booking your Journey.

Briefing sessions

A local host or tour manager will be happy to guide you through the trip and answer all of your questions. Upon arrival to your destination, an Enrichment Journeys representative will meet with the group and go over items such as the daily schedule, weather and local customs.


All hotels booked by Enrichment Journeys are held to a high standard of comfort and quality, in accordance to international accommodation standards and rating systems. However, each accommodation varies so you may experience various types of properties throughout your excursions.

Journey to the Great Cities Of China And Japan

Similar Journeys

Journey to the Best of China and South Korea

25 Nights Departs: March 6, 2019

Know More

Journey to the Heart of Southeast Asia and China

28 Nights Departs: March 13, 2019

Know More

Journey to China and Southeast Asia

25 Nights Departs: November 14, 2018

Know More

Journey to the Wonders of Japan and China

26 Nights Departs: October 10, 2018

Know More

Journey to the Ancient Spice Routes of India, Dubai and Singapore

26 Nights Departs: March 8, 2019

Know More

Journey to the Great Cities Of China And Japan

Regional Information

Travel Documentation

Your identification is one of the most important things you will be carrying on your trip. Passports are required upon entry into Shanghai and subsequent countries. Have your passport and visas ready and available at all checkpoints. Scan and copy these documents to print out as well as e-mailing to yourself and someone back home in case anything is misplaced. It can also be worth bringing an international ID or license.

Passport and Visa

Your passport must be in good condition and valid for at least 6 months following your date of return from the trip. China requires a multiple entry tourist visa, which you can apply for before arrival. If traveling with a non-US passport, contact your local embassy to ensure this document is the only one needed for passage into China, South Korea, and Taiwan.

Visa requirements change frequently and for various reasons. As a result, our Personal Vacation Managers are not always able to provide the most current visa information. However, you will need traveler visas for China prior to departure.

The best way to obtain up-to-date information regarding visa requirements is to visit the official US government website for Americans traveling abroad, Travel.State.Gov, which details specific information on the countries you would like to visit, including visa requirements.

Some cruise lines offer visa services for your cruise at an additional charge. However, this is not always available and your Journey starts on land.

You may also use a third-party visa service, such as Expedited Travel. These services require an additional service fee but make the process of applying for a visa much simpler.


Vaccinations are not required by law in places such as China, but it is recommended to protect one’s health from preventable diseases abroad. It is always good to have routine vaccinations up to date when traveling for ailments such as chickenpox, measles and the flu shot. Use your own discretion when deciding on what vaccinations to have and your personal medical history. During this excursion, the utmost care will be taken with prepared food, atmosphere and other elements, so the likelihood of contracting diseases is scarce. Here are some suggestions for the various countries visited on this journey:

  • China – Short-term travel shots for Typhoid and Hepatitis A
  • South Korea – Short-term travel shots for Typhoid and Hepatitis A
  • Japan – Short-term travel shots for Hepatitis A

If you have more questions, feel free to contact the Center for Disease Control and Prevention at 1-800-232-4636 or click here to visit the website.

Electric Current

Have an international electric outlet converter for this trip. Each country has variants, so this will ensure your electronics stay charged. China runs on 220v, South Korea runs on 220-240v and Taiwan runs on 110-120v. Most hotels will have two and three-pronged outlets to use for various appliances. Ship cabins also have outlets for you to use with their converter.

Money Matters

You may need multiple currencies on this trip. However, this is only required for additional shopping, food or extra expenses, as much of this is included in the price of the trip.

Click here for current exchange rates.

China – Yuan Renminbi, or Chinese Yuan

South Korea – Korean Republic Won

Japan – Japanese Yen

Tipping Guidelines

Tipping is always appreciated but not required. Expect several instances throughout the hospitality industry in Asia that allows for tipping. Have small bills ready for hotel staff, boat crew, restaurant servers and baggage handlers. Avoiding coins may be advisable, as it can be a cultural faux-pas to use these as tips.

Gratuities are included for group meals, at hotels, and at airports. If you have a meal outside the itinerary or hire a resident driver, a few dollars in the local currency is customary. The local host or tour manager can be tipped roughly $8.00-$12.00 USD per day, as can any ship staff member (which will be split at the end of the day by all), and drivers can be tipped about $5 USD per day. Guides/drivers will happily accept either local currency or US.


With the tour covering a wide range of climates and regions, you will most likely come in contact with heat, rain, fog, wind and damp environments. Check the weather online before embarking for an up-to-date look at the conditions in major destinations. Expect average temperatures to vary by region and time of year.

High/Low in Fahrenheit
Xi’an, China 39/25 45/30 55/39 68/50 77/58 86/67 87/71 85/70 76/61 66/51 52/38 42/28
Chengdu, China 49/38 54/42 62/48 72/56 80/64 83/70 87/73 86/72 79/67 70/59 62/50 51/41
Guilin, China 53/42 56/45 62/51 74/61 82/68 87/74 91/76 91/76 87/71 79/63 69/53 59/44
Shanghai, China 47/35 50/38 57/44 68/53 77/63 83/71 91/79 90/78 83/71 74/61 64/50 52/38
Bejing, China 36/18 42/23 54/33 69/47 80/58 87/67 88/72 87/70 79/60 67/46 51/31 38/21
Jeju Island, South Korea 47/38 50/39 56/43 64/50 72/58 76/66 85/74 86/76 79/69 71/60 61/50 51/41
Seoul, South Korea 35/19 40/24 50/33 62/43 72/54 79/64 83/71 85/72 78/62 68/49 53/36 40/24
Tokyo, Japan 49/40 49/50 55/45 64/55 71/63 76/69 83/76 86/79 80/73 70/63 62/53 53/44

Practice the Local Language

Knowing a few phrases in the local vernacular can be a wonderful way to connect with people and feel immersed in the culture. Here are some fun phrases:

China – Chinese Mandarin

nǐ hǎo (Knee how): Hello

Zài jiàn (Zi gee’en): Good Bye

Shì (Shr): Yes

Búshì (Boo shr): No

Qǐng (Ching): Please

Xiè  xiè (Sheh sheh): Thank you

Japan – Japanese

Yaa (Yah): Hi

Sayōnara (Cy-o-na-ra): Good Bye

Hai (Hi): Yes

Īe (E-yah): No

Onegaishimasu (O-neg-I-she-mas): Please

Arigatou (Ah-re-ga-to): Thank you

South Korea – Korean

Yeoboseyo (Yo-bo-sa-yo): Hello

Annyeong (ann-yong): Goodbye

Ye (Yay): Yes

Ani (Ah- Nee): No

Budi (Boo-Dee): Please

Gomabseubnida (Kam-sa-ham-ni-da): Thank you


Facts and Figures

Explore some unusual and fascinating facts about the countries you are about to visit!


  • China has the biggest population in the world, with 1.34 billion people. The capital city of Beijing has 20 million people.
  • One in every five people in the world is Chinese. China’s population is four times that of the United States.
  • The Chinese invented paper, the compass, gunpowder, and printing.
  • According to the city’s official census in 2006, the most common surname in Beijing is Wang, a name shared by 10.35% of the population.
  • The city of Beijing is very old and dates back about 3,000 years.

South Korea

  • South Koreans are automatically classified at birth according to their blood type, which is a custom that originated in Japan but has become very important in South Korean culture and may even determine who gets to marry whom.
  • Taxis in South Korea are color-coded according to the level of service offered. A gray or white taxi is a basic car with a qualified but potentially inexperienced driver, while the black cabs are luxury cars with experienced drivers.
  • In South Korea, babies are considered one year old at birth.
  • In South Korea, it is perfectly legal to drink alcohol in public. People can carry open containers of their favorite alcoholic beverage and even take a drink or two.
  • On Jeju, South Korea’s largest island, giant stone statues known as dol hareubang (old grandfather) can be found along the beaches. Newlywed women believe that if they touch the statues’ long, broad, phallic-looking noses, they will be blessed with fertility.
  • South Korea is the world leader in internet connectivity, having by far the world’s fastest average internet connection speed. About 92.4% of the population are internet users.


  • Sometimes the trains are so crowded railway staff are employed to cram passengers inside.
  • Many couples in Japan celebrate Christmas like Valentine’s Day.  It is definitely more of a “lovers” holiday in Japan.
  • More than 70% of Japan consists of mountains, including more than 200 volcanoes.
  • Mt. Fuji, the tallest mountain in Japan, is an active volcano (although scientists have not reached a consensus on what defines “active”).
  • A nice musk melon, similar to a cantaloupe, may sell for over $300 USD. A nice specimen of Yubari melon are often physically perfect, not like their American counterparts with dark smudges and scars.
  • There are four different writing systems in Japan; Romaji, Katakana, Hiragana, and Kanji.
  • Coffee is very popular and Japan imports approximately 85% of Jamaica’s annual coffee production.

Journey to the Great Cities Of China And Japan

eJourney Guide

Receive your personalized E-Journey Guide today!
Simply fill out the form below and your E-Journey Guide will be on its way via email.
Your easy-to-read, printable PDF-formatted E-Journey Guide makes it convenient to review and plan your next world-class journey with us!

It contains a wealth of valuable travel information including:
  • Detailed Destination Information
  • Day-by-Day Itinerary
  • Preparing for Your Trip
  • Frequently Asked Questions
  • Local Cultural Information
  • Recommended Readings
  • And so much more!
Don’t delay! Your Journey’s availability may be limited.

As always, our friendly and dependable Personal Vacation Managers are committed to assist you every step of the way.

Feel free to call us at:

Plan Your Next Journey Now

Unique destinations and immersive experiences are just a phone call away!

Complete the following form, and a Personal Vacation Manager will contact you via email or phone: