This geographical exploration trip is perfect for students and teachers looking to examine China, its landscapes, her people, and how they’ve interacted through the ages to establish modern China as we know it today.
Starting on the south coast of China and moving up to its heartlands, this itinerary examines how migration and economic development are related. In addition, we study the different effects of rapid industrial development in different regions.
Our school trips are completely customizable and can be tailored to meet your requirements. Additional destinations available for this theme include Yunnan, Shandong, Fujian, Beijing, Shanghai, and Inner Mongolia. Speak to a specialist now to find out more.
*Prices based on groups of 20 students with 2 free teacher spots.
Day 1: Hello, Hong Kong!
Arrive at Hong Kong International Airport and transfer to accommodation. Throughout the day our guides explain Hong Kong’s rich history. Hong Kong is one of the world’s most diverse metropolises and has a fascinating history of migration. Hong Kong citizens range in ethnicities from Malay to British and this special administrative region has over 8000 high rises! We start our trip by taking the tram up to Victoria Peak for stunning views over the city and harbour below. Take a coach back down and visit the Botanical Gardens and Zoo. At dusk, ride the Star Ferry across to Kowloon to explore Nathan Road and the Avenue of the Stars. Finish the day at the Temple Street Night Market.
Day 2: Border Crossings & Buddhism
Students go from Hong Kong to Guangzhou on a cross-border train in the morning. Upon arriving in Guangzhou, we go straight to a delicious Cantonese pastime and culinary experience – a Dim Sum lunch. Usually eaten over an entire morning, this meal is a collection of small appetizer-like dishes that are eaten with endless cups of tea. Then we head to the Buddhist Bright Filial Piety Temple. Established around 200 BC the temple is a significant location from which Mahayana Buddhism was first dispersed into China. Then, it’s on to Yuexiu park – one of Guangzhou’s most beautiful nature reserves.
Day 3: China’s Bread (Rice) Basket
We start the day with a train journey to Guilin which is famous for its idyllic green rice paddies. Upon arriving students transfer to Longsheng autonomous county for a hands-on lesson from our local guide about agriculture in China. We spend time walking amongst the quintessential rice terraces and visit the Dragon’s Back (Longji) area. The night is spent in a cozy accommodation close to the foot of the terraced hills.
Day 4: From Fields to Food
The local inhabitants of this region are the Miao, Yao, Zhuang, & Dong indigenous peoples. They are well-known for their hospitality, love of singing, and richly embroidered traditional wear. This morning, we hike through remote rice terrace-covered areas, stopping at their small hamlets and breathtaking viewpoints. We then transfer to Yangshuo, a town nestled amongst impressive karst peaks, famous for drawing backpackers from around the world. Students will be cooking up their own dinner at a local cooking school.
Day 5: Mud Caves and Bamboo Rafts
Kick-off the morning with a pleasant bike hike through a scenic riverside cycling route. Afterwards, students embark onto the water on bamboo rafts (the Guilin equivalent of a gondola ride) to appreciate the surrounding scenery. In the afternoon, we head to Moon Hill an iconic symbol of the Karsts in the area. After a short but challenging hike, we head to the underground mud caves for some fun and relaxation! In the evening, we explore West Street’s lively evening bazaar.
Day 6: A Deeper Look
We start the day with rock climbing; a special treat for students as Yangshuo is hailed as a rock climber’s Mecca. Our professional climbing instructors ensure that students are safe and prepared for the excursion. Then, we switch gears with a sustainable agriculture workshop, using the farm-to-table cycle in Yangshuo as a case study. Students will take an in-depth look at agriculture in China and how its progression affects the bigger picture. We finish the day by attending a stunning performance in an open-air natural theater, Impressions San Jie Liu.
Day 7: School Exchange
Visit a Chinese school, specially matched to your educational interests. Students will take a school tour, join some lessons, play sports, eat lunch and participate in other activities alongside Chinese students. Visiting schools should prepare gifts and / or a short performance for the welcome ceremony in advance. Then, students will go to the Li River – an iconic location, featured on the back of the 20RMB note for its beauty.
Day 8: Pandas!
We take a morning flight to Chengdu, a historically significant city to China and a major cultural hub. A comprehensive trip of China would not be complete without seeing its national animals – Pandas! Students visit Chengdu’s Panda Breeding Research Centre to see China’s national animal and learn how the successful conservation project has brought them back from the brink of extinction. (Interested in a whole day of service work helping the Pandas? Let our specialist know). In the evening we visit a traditional teahouse & performance hall. Best known for its famous face-changing act, students are treated to a variety of short Sichuan Opera performances.
Day 9: Final Presentations
We start the day with leisurely coach transfer to Leshan. Here we see the Leshan Giant Buddha – the tallest stone Buddha in the world and by far the largest pre-modern statue in recorded history. Students hike down the side of the statue to its feet, then climb back up to its head. We will be able to see the sluicing channels that have preserved the Buddha as well as admire its sheer size and architectural genius. (Ask our specialist about our Leshan Buddha worksheet). For dinner, students try China’s favorite meal: Sichuan Hot Pot; a boiling, spicy, fragrant broth used for self-cooking an assortment of meats and vegetables. A China must-try! (non-spicy version available). Finally, we hold the Student Fieldwork Presentations: “The Contrast Between Urban and Rural China” (or an alternative project designed by the lead teacher suited to the itinerary)
Day 10: Continue the Learning Adventure at Home
We say goodbye to our guides and trip leaders and catch the flight home. We encourage students to apply what they’ve learned from their experiences back at home!