China is one of the countries with a large historical background: due to its immeasurable constructions, buildings and sites with significant architectonic and engineering value, as well as being a major cultural melting pot.
Added to this, China has all sorts of spectacular landscapes: from deep lush jungles and deserts to paradise beaches and prairies, as well as snow-capped mountains and busy metropolitan cities.

We leave Torreón in a plane to Mexico City. From there, have a quick layover to fly to Houston. At 1:00 AM, fly from Houston to Beijing, losing one day in the process which will be recovered on the way back.

Jiangshan Park Arrival in Beijing in the Morning, transfer and installation in Hotel and allow students to have an early breakfast. Visit Beijing's Jingshan Park and adjoining Beihai Park. Later, visit the Lama Temple near old Beijing and have included lunch. After this, head back to the hotel to end the day and rest for the next day.

Gate of Heavenly Peace After breakfast, head to Tiananmen Square, the world's largest public square, flanked by historical and buildings, museums and Communist monuments. Walk over through the Gate of Heavenly Peace into the Forbidden City, the symbolic center of the Chinese universe and a monument to dynastic China. After the visit, go for a ride in traditional rickshaws through Old Beijing's Hutongs, narrow ancient alleys to discover traditional Chinese neighbourhoods. Afterwards, head back into the city for a hearty traditional Beijing Duck.

Sacred Way to the Ming Tombs After breakfast, take a drive to northwest Beijing to visit the Sacred Way of Ming Tombs, regarded as China's finest example of imperial tomb architecture. Here we will walk along the way Sacred Way and admire the stone sculpture-lined avenue.

Great Wall of China Afterwards, head over for a lunch break at a local Jade workshop. After lunch, take a scenic route to reach China's most renowned monument and one of the Great Wonders of the World: the Great Wall. A monument that was built starting in the 5th century BC to keep out foreign invaders and carrying on for over 3500 miles.

Temple of Heaven In the morning, visit the Temple of Heaven, one of the largest temple complexes of China and a paradigm of Chinese culture and symbolism. Later on, we will visit what is considered China's finest imperial garden, the Summer Palace, a 700 acre estate with breathtaking views, temples pavilions and the lavishly painted "Long Corridor". If time permits, we will make a photo stop at the Olympic Village to take some pictures and a stroll through it and have an outside view of the Bird's Nest Stadium. Later that night head to the airport for a flight to Xi'an.

Terracotta Warriors During the morning, head towards modern China's greatest archeological discovery: the Terracotta Warriors. Over 6,000 figures have been discovered and more are set to be dug up. At the site of the finding, we will have lunch and see a noodle making demonstration. Later, we will make a quick stop at a workshop that makes replica Terracotta warriors.
In the evening, we will attend a culinary feast and cultural delights in a Dumpling (dim sum) banquet followed by a fascinating Tang Dynasty stage show that will take us through time in a recollection of China's Golden Age until its modern day.

Wild Goose Pagoda In the morning, have a stroll or bike around Xi'an's City Wall to later visit the Wild Goose Pagoda, a Tang Dynasty landmark. Afterwards, fly towards Hangzhou.

Dragon Well Tea Plantation After breakfast, we take a cruise on the picturesque West Lake and a stop by the famed "Broken Bridge". Also, the visit is framed by a visit to the Dragon Well Tea Plantation, where the legendary green tea is picked and processed by hand. We will learn about the harvesting, as well as the proper way to brew this healthful beverage. The traditional Chinese Tea Ceremony will be demonstrated to sample the freshness of the tea. Time permitting, we tour the "Old Street" with Ming & Qing houses and stone cobbled lanes, where we'll visit the Chinese Herb Museum, a rare opportunity to know China traditional herb and medication. Later, drive to Suzhou.

Garden of the Master of Fishing Nets Suzhou is a 2,500­ year ­old city renowned the world over for its traditional gardens, ancient canals and silk production. We start the day by visiting the Garden of the Master of Fishing Nets, and experience all of the elements of a classical Chinese garden. Dating back to 1140, it is considered by many, the finest of all Suzhou's gardens. Lunch at a local restaurant, followed by a visit to the Silk Spinning Mill, where we will learn how silk is created from the mulberry­munching silkworms to produce thread and fine cloth. Later on, take an exciting ride on a gondola and experience the charm of the waterways in Tongli, a pretty little water town typical of the region. In the late afternoon, drive to Shanghai.

Shanghai Bund After breakfast, we'll take a leisure walk along the waterfront promenade of the Bund. The Bund was at the heart of colonial shanghai, flanked on one side by the Huangpu River and on the other by the hotels, banks, offices, and clubs that were the grandiose symbols of western commercial power. Later we ride up to the 88th floor of the Jinmao Tower, the third tallest building in China. At 1,380 feet, it is the world's fifth tallest building, where there is a stunning view of Shanghai.

Jin Mao Tower Later, we take a leisure walk at Xin Tian Di. Literally means "New Heaven Earth", it is Shanghai's trendiest lifestyle destination. This 2-­block complex consists of high­-end restaurants (some of Shanghai's best), bars, shops, and entertainment facilities, mostly lodged in refurbished traditional Shanghainese shikumen (stone-­frame) housing. Dinner tonight is followed by an unforgettable performance of the Shanghai Acrobats.

We will head early to Shanghai airport to fly out to Beijing and have a quick layover before turning back to Houston International, recovering a day in the process.

Fly down to Mexico City, where a group will fly back to Torreón the same night, and another group will have to spend the night to fly back to Torreón the next day, April 19, 2017.

Luggage

  • One checked baggage (23 kg / 158 cm)
  • One carry-on luggage (5 kg / 115 cm)
  • All luggage must have ID tags
  • For internal flights in China, bags must be locked
  • Use a leg-bag or document holder, to keep important documents and money from getting lost
  • Liquids in the carry-on must not exceed 100 mL / 3.4 oz and have to be in a clear plastic container bag
  • If you're bringing a portable power-bank (phone charger battery) for your electronics it must not exceed 100Wh (multiply Ah x V to get Wh) and be clearly etched or labeled on the device

Money

  • Students should bring around $250-$300 USD for personal expenses, and whatever more is considered necessary for shopping
  • The exchange rate is 6.5 yuan per dollar
  • Save exchange (USD-CNY) receipts to be able to exchange back into dollars
  • Credit / Debit card use is not recommended due to low acceptance, although several of the big shops we'll be visiting do take them and it is safe to use them there.

Weather

  • Temperatures in the north (Beijing and Xi'an) will be cold, with below freezing during nights and mornings and in the low 20s during the day and evening.
  • Temperatures in the south (Hangzhou and Shanghai) will be mild, with cold bursts during nights and mornings and mid 20s during the day and evening.

Clothing

  • Students are required to bring their red P.E. uniform T-shirt on the flight from Torreón to Beijing
  • Warm clothes are recommended, as well as light jackets
  • Comfortable shoes are necessary because we will be walking plenty.

Other Important Information

  • There is a 14 hour time difference to keep in mind
  • Although most places we'll visit have international wall plugs, it is recommended to bring a power adapter to be able to plug in electronic devices
Number Due Date Amount Due
1 August 31 $ 710
2 September 15 $ 370
3 September 30 $ 370
4 October 14 $ 370
5 October 28 $ 370
6 November 15 $ 370
7 November 30 $ 370
8 December 15 $ 370

About Payments

  • Payments will be made at the school's cashier before or by the due date.
  • Payments will be made in pesos at the current established exchange rate for the payment.
  • Payments are non-refundable
  • After paying at the school's cashier, bring the receipt to Ricardo del Rio in counseling for documentation