Tours and Travel: professional guides, expert itineraries.
Experience China like few others
Age Old Wisdom
With over 4000 years of documented history, China boasts a wealth of homegrown knowledge unsurpassed anywhere in the world. Celebrated fields of study that have emerged from China include Tai Chi, Wushu Gong Fu, Qi Gong, Chinese opera, acrobatics, and calligraphy. VariArts creates educational tours and training programs that are highly esteemed, well organized opportunities for those who wish to use their travel time learning one of China’s renowned practices.
VariArts also designs seminar tours and volunteer opportunities that expose travellers to a number of themes related to Chinese current events, history, politics, art, and culture. VariArts contracts the help of leading professionals and university professors to lead all educational aspects of the tours. Our viewpoint is that by immersing our clients into the heart of Chinese life with the people that know best, the result is none other than extraordinary learning experiences that last a lifetime.
Sample China 'Insider' Tour:
Day 1 & 2. Beijing Courtyard 7
Visit Tian’anmen Square and the Forbidden City; explore the byways of Beijing’s history in traditional Hutong neighbourhoods
Day 3. Beijing Courtyard 7
In the morning, we set out to visit the mighty Great Wall, the barrier and traditional border of China that has drawn visitors for centuries. In the afternoon, we visit the opulent Summer Palace, holiday retreat of the emperors. The visit includes a private tour of the Empress Dowager Cixi’s custom-built Peking Opera theater, where the nobles enjoyed performances.
Day 4. Beijing Courtyard 7
In the morning, we tour the house of Mei Lanfang, the most famous Peking Opera star of the 20th century and an innovator in the art-form. In the afternoon, we visit the National Peking Opera Institute and Peking Opera Art Museum. After dinner, experience the charm of Peking Opera by learning some basic movements and face-painting from an experienced expert. Later, enjoy your first live Peking Opera performance.
Day 5. Xi’an – Hyatt Regency Xian
Morning flight to Xi’an. Visit the world-famous subterranean army of Terra Cotta warriors, bike around Xi’an’s ancient and well-preserved City Wall and explore the colorful night life of the Muslim Quarter. Enjoy a Qinqiang show at a nearby teahouse, just as local people do. This opera style is distinguished by the folk songs of Shaanxi and neighboring Gansu provinces, as well as the “bangzi” woodblock.
Day 6. Shanghai – Urban Hotel Shanghai
Visit the Provincial Museum and Stone Stele Forest and learn the ancient art of Chinese calligraphy from a local master. Fly to the booming coastal metropolis of Shanghai; at night, explore the elegant colonial architecture, bright lights, and stunning skyscraper views on the Bund.
Day 7. Shanghai – Urban Hotel Shanghai
In the morning, we visit the Shanghai Museum, one of China’s finest repositories of its traditional culture and many art forms. In the afternoon, visit the Shanghai Kunqu Performance Troupe and enjoy a show in the evening.
Day 8. Suzhou
En route from Shanghai to Suzhou, we stop to take in a traditional Yangtze River Delta “water town,” crisscrossed with canals and typical of a slower, more traditional way of life. We then tour the Embroidery Institute and Silk Museum to learn about Suzhou’s most famous local products. Then, we visit the Humble Administrator’s Garden, one of the most famous of Suzhou’s world-renowned landscaped traditional gardens. We then enjoy a Pingtan Opera show, typical of a more vernacular story-telling bard-like style, while enjoying a cup of green tea. The trip ends with a return to Shanghai and your flight home.