This afternoon, board Sanctuary Yangzi Explorer at Maoping Pier and prepare for your cruise upstream through this stunning section of the Yangtze River, famous for its impressive scenery and historic and cultural importance to China.
Please note that your passport or local ID is required for check-in, and that your photograph will be taken for security identification purposes.
Settle into your room before joining your fellow guests in the Explorer Bar for a welcome drink.
Tonight, there is an optional embarkation dinner* and a welcome safety briefing. Later in the evening, the 7 Wonders of China documentary will be shown in the Tang Theatre.
Start your morning with an early bird tea or coffee and a traditional Tai Chi lesson, led by our certified Tai Chi Master and work up an appetite for the buffet breakfast.
This morning’s lectures are Chinese Medicine and Chinese foot reflexology demos in the Tang Theatre. Guests will also have the option to go on an excursion to the Tribe of the Three Gorges* or The Three Gorges Ship Lift tour.**
Tribe of the Three Gorges is located in the Xiling Gorge, surrounded by spectacular mountains and twinkling waters. Visitors will enjoy watching songs and dances in this scenic spot, as old sailboats moor below towering houses on stilts. Visitors will also watch maids wash clothes in the brook and fishermen cast their nets in the misty distance.
The Ship Lift of the Three Gorges dam is an elevator for ships weighing up to 3,000 ton. The lift is in essence a hydraulic seesaw which lifts and lowers boats through the dam, keeping the water level stable. The lift means that ships will now pass through the dam in less than 40 minutes as opposed to the four hours it previously took.
Guests will then enjoy a delicious lunch on board.
After lunch, depart Sanctuary Yangzi Explorer and visit the Three Gorges Project Dam Site and Exhibition Centre. Spanning 2,335 metres in length and 181 metres in height, the dam is the largest and most expensive engineering project in the world. While the dam’s 32 generators will produce enough clean energy to reduce China’s reliance on coal, the project has also caused much controversy. During construction, 13 cities, 140 towns, 1,352 villages, over 600 industrial factories and more than 1,200 archaeological projects were submerged.
Afterwards, we sail through Xiling Gorge – once the most dangerous part of the river. Enjoy the view of the river where the river widens and sweeps through groves of orange and pomelo trees. This is the perfect introduction to the relaxed pace of the Yangtze River.
This evening we have prepared a special Captain’s welcome reception and a delicious a la carte dinner. Tonight, show off your singing skills with some karaoke, before a live band perform in the Explorer Bar.
* Optional at CNY290 per guest.
** Optional at CNY350 per guest.
This morning, early bird tea and coffee is available in the Explorer Bar. Begin the day with Tai Chi practice before a buffet breakfast.
This morning’s shore excursion is a unique ride along the Shennong Stream on a sampan - a traditional longboat rowed by expert Tujia boatmen. As we gently float through this stunning riverine gorge flanked by verdant forest, you’ll see evidence of early settlements in the form of hanging coffins stowed high within the limestone
Before returning from Shennong Stream we will visit a traditional trackers village, where you will have a chance to catch a fascinating glimpse of the traditional, rural Chinese community (dependent on weather and water level). You’ll find mud huts as homes, basic kitchens where the meat is dried on hooks and coffins in the bedroom. And, while there are satellite dishes, villagers still pride their heritage.
Back on board, lunch is served. This afternoon, guests are encouraged to appreciate the scenery from the Sun Deck as we sail through the spectacular Wu Gorge and Qutang Gorge, complimented by informative commentary.
Relax and enjoy the on board activities. During the afternoon, you will be able to listen to cultural lectures. Following the sail through the Qutang Gorge, there will be an optional excursion to White King Town* (please note, this is dependent on the number of guests interested).
Tonight, indulge in an a la carte dinner in the Dynasty Dining Room.
A talk on the 816 Underground Project in the Tang Theatre will leave you well equipped for tomorrow’s excursion. The onboard entertainment tonight is a movie complete with popcorn, and a live band performance in the Explorer Bar.
Items marked * incur an additional charge
Tracker village activity will not take place between the end of May and beginning of September due to low water levels
Start the day with a delicious tea or coffee and a session of Tai Chi before breakfast.
For guests sailing mid-March to May and mid-September to November, this morning you can choose to experience one of the following two activities: The 816 Underground Project or the White Crane Ridge Underwater Museum.
The 816 Underground Project is the world’s largest artificial military cave, an intriguing secret, hidden in the mountains of Fuling. Over 50 years ago, more than 60,000 constructers, came to Jianzishan, an uninhabited place among mountains and forest, to start work on a top secret construction project of a monumental scale. The work continued for 17 years and was nearly completed when the government decided to suspend it, before any nuclear material could be produced. Now as the secrets of military caves are revealed, you will be able to look at the true face of 816 project hidden for 50 years.
The White Crane Ridge Underwater Museum will take you some 148 feet under water to admire the river bed and the intricate ancient rock carvings left there many years ago. Learn about the Yangtze river, its flora and fauna, while enjoying this fascinating museum. After visiting The White Crane Ridge Underwater Museum, move on to the local market where you will gain insight into the region’s rich culinary culture. This is a daily market where farmers meet to buy and sell a variety of goods, ranging from
fruit and vegetables to fish and meat, and of course a whole array of pickles - which Fuling is famous for.
A lunch buffet is served followed by on board activities such as a dumpling cooking class. We’ll also introduce you to the ancient Chinese board game - Mahjong.
For guests sailing between mid-May and mid-September, enjoy on board activities this morning.
After lunch, choose to experience either the 816 Underground Project or the White Crane Ridge Underwater Museum and a visit to a local market.
Tonight, we’ll treat you to a sumptuous farewell dinner, ‘A Taste of China’, before a live band performance in the Explorer Bar.
Enjoy a tea or coffee with an international buffet breakfast before disembarking in Chongqing for your onward journey.