A World Apart

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  • Group Tour
  • Starting Price: $6,875
  • Length: 14 days
  • Operator: Travcoa
  • 866-591-0260
    Destinations: Far East, China, North Korea
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Tour Description

Join us on this expedition to one of the most isolated nations in the world. Begin in Beijing with a private tour of some of the city’s fascinating old quarters, the hutongs, by rickshaw. Then fly to Pyongyang, North Korea and see the sights in the capital, including the solemn Kumsusan Memorial Palace and a center for after-school studies where you’ll marvel at a spectacular student performance. Then travel into the mountains to explore North Korea’s natural landscape, a beautiful Buddhist temple and an exotic collection of gifts given to the former president of the country. Watch the Mass Games* - an incredible gymnastics exhibition - from your VIP seats. Throughout this remote land, you’ll enjoy special access to cultural experiences like privately guided visits to a middle school, an orphanage, the largest library in North Korea and an art studio where most of the country’s public art is fabricated. Back in China, enjoy a visit to the lovely lakeside city of Hangzhou and the futuristic metropolis of Shanghai.

  • Explore Beijing’s hutongs - narrow streets of “Old China” - on a special private tour by rickshaw
  • Pay a strange and solemn visit to Kumsusan Memorial Palace mausoleum where Kim Il Sung lies in state
  • Enjoy a special private meeting with one of the expert archivists who works in North Korea’s largest library and university
  • Marvel at the spectacle of the Mass Games*, an incredible performance of gymnastics and dance, from your VIP seats
  • Travel into the remote mountains to see the International Friendship Exhibition, which displays the more than 200,000 gifts received North Korea Independent Journey 2012 by Kim Il Sung from world leaders
  • In Hangzhou, take a private cruise on lovely West Lake
  • Enjoy a special performance by professional Chinese acrobats in Shanghai

*The Mass Games can be seen on the August, September, and October departures only.

Itinerary

DAYS 1 - 3

Beijing, China

Arrive in Beijing on Day 2. Renowned for its ancient temples, opulent palaces and massive stone walls and gates, there’s scarcely a building standing in Beijing that doesn’t have some facet of Chinese history associated with it. Enjoy a full-day tour of the city with your private guide. Begin with a visit to the fascinating City Planning Museum, followed by an exploration of the Olympic Park, including an exclusive tour of the famous Bird’s Nest stadium. Explore the hutongs - narrow streets of the old city - on a special private tour by rickshaw.

St. Regis Hotel, Beijing

DAY 4

Pyongyang, North Korea

After a morning at leisure, go to Beijing airport for your early afternoon flight to Pyongyang, the capital of North Korea. Your journey in North Korea will take you on the trip of a lifetime - revealing a catalogue of revolutionary monuments, sculptures and spectacular architecture. Learn about the Korean Juche idea, discover how North Koreans perceive the world, and how they spend their day-to-day life. Explore the capital and various locations in the country, including a visit to the last of the Cold War frontiers at Panmunjom. Highlights include the contact (albeit limited) you have with the Korean people.

This afternoon, explore some of the city’s highlights. Visit the Arch of Triumph - at 195 feet high and 165 feet wide, it is the biggest arch in the world. Modeled after the Arc de Triomphe in Paris, it was designed to commemorate Korean resistance to Japan between 1925 and 1945 and eventual liberation from Japanese rule. Late afternoon, arrive and settle in at your hotel, centrally located on Yanggakdo Island, in the middle of the city’s Taedong River.

Yanggakdo Hotel, Pyongyang

DAYS 5 & 6

Pyongyang Mount Myohyang

Today see more sights in Pyongyang, including the solemn mausoleum of Kim Il Sung and the country’s main university. You’ll enjoy special VIP privileges, meeting with an expert archivist in the central library, a master craftsman in the sculpture studio where all North Korea’s public art is made, and school teachers and children at a middle school. Then head for the scenic Myohyang Mountains. There you’ll visit an 11th-century Buddhist temple and have a private tour of one of the largest and strangest collections of ceremonial gifts in the world.

Hyangsan Hotel, Mount Myohyang

DAYS 7 & 8

Pyongyang Nampo

Back in Pyongyang, take an elevator up to the top of the largest stone tower in the world for a panoramic view of the city. Then travel to the small town of Nampo to visit a local orphanage and meet some of the staff and children there. A private concert of traditional music awaits you at the Pyongyang Conservatory. The following day, explore the DMZ between South and North Korea with your expert local guide and learn more about the two countries’ divided history.

Yanggakdo Hotel, Pyongyang

DAY 9

Pyongyang Beijing, China

Start the day with a delightful visit to a local middle school, where you will tour the school and meet staff and students. Then spend the rest of the morning on a two-hour private boat trip down the Taedong River, taking in the views and peaceful surroundings. After lunch on board, disembark to at Mangyongdae, the birthplace of Kim Il Sung. Visit his 100-year-old Native House and the adjacent park. Return to Pyongyang airport late this afternoon, in time for our evening flight to Beijing. Upon arrival, you will be taken directly to your luxury hotel.

St. Regis Hotel, Beijing

DAYS 10 & 11

Hangzhou, China

Fly to Hangzhou and begin your exploration of this lovely city with a private cruise on scenic West Lake. Tour a stunning example of traditional Chinese architecture, Guo Villa, which blends in with its beautiful natural surroundings. The next day includes a full-day tour of Lingyin Temple, one of the most famous Buddhist temples in China; the Six Harmonies Pagoda, a true masterpiece of Chinese architecture; and a private visit to a tea plantation where you’ll have the opportunity to tour the terraces and sample the world-famous tea.

Sofitel Hangzhou Westlake or Shangri-la Hotel, Hangzhou

DAYS 12 - 14

Shanghai Depart for Home

Ancient tradition and modern ambition meld in Shanghai. Experience a magical evening enthralled by a performance of Chinese acrobats. Survey the city’s architectural wonders and stroll the serene paths of Yu Yuan Garden in Shanghai’s Old Town. Witness the blending of ancient tradition and forward- looking ambition in the Shanghai Museum’s extraordinary collection of ancient Chinese art, which resides in a stunning building in the heart of the city. On Day 14 you will be transferred to the airport for your flight home or on to your next destination.

Pudong Shangri-La Hotel, Shanghai

Departures

Pricing Information

April 14, 2012

From $6,875.00 per person double occupancy.

From $1,600.00 single room supplement.

May 5, 2012

From $6,875.00 per person double occupancy.

From $1,600.00 single room supplement.

August 11, 2012

From $7,450.00 per person double occupancy.

From $1,700.00 single room supplement.

September 8, 2012

From $7,450.00 per person double occupancy.

From $1,700.00 single room supplement.

September 29, 2012

From $7,450.00 per person double occupancy.

From $1,700.00 single room supplement.

Journey Includes

  • Deluxe rooms in the best available hotels
  • Three meals per day, including our unique Dine-Around program that lets you enjoy any restaurant you choose with à la carte dining, or relax with room service when available*
  • A professional Travel Director as your personal concierge
  • Local sightseeing with professional English-speaking guides with unparalleled knowledge, including entrance fees for places visited
  • Active participation and up-close encounters to experience the cultures of your journey
  • Bottled water, soft drinks, coffee and tea included with meals; bottled water during sightseeing excursions
  • All gratuities to hotel and restaurant staff and local guides and drivers
  • Group or individual airport transfers on arrival and departure flights
  • TheTravcoAssist Travel Protection Plan, including emergency medical evacuation insurance coverage for injury or illness, and 24-hour Worldwide Live Travel Assistance through Travel Guard Assistance

*Due to remote or undeveloped locations on some journeys, accommodations may not always meet Western standards. Dine-Around opportunities will be limited in remote or unsecured locations.

All prices are in US dollars and do not include international airfare, unless otherwise noted.

Prices displayed are based on the lowest season base price and assume double occupancy. Prices are shown in U.S. dollars and may or may not include administrative fees, taxes, meals, airfare (where applicable) and Single Supplements. Cancellation penalties, blackout dates and other restrictions may apply.

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Tour Notes