China Culture Tour (www.chinaculturetour.com) has been focusing on tailor-made luxury China tours more than 12 years and has served thousands of high-end clients including business owners, CEOs, lawyers, dentists, artists, photographers, company groups, school groups, etc. from all over the world. Contact us directly and we will customize you an unique tour based on your requests and interests.
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I researched companies online quite extensively before deciding to go with China Culture Tour. Nora was my main contact and was able to answer nearly all my questions and accommodate most of my requests. I was planning to meet my son in Beijing, after he had completed a stay in Mongolia and wanted this to be an exceptional experience for both of us. Indeed it was! We loved it! We stayed in five-star hotels which were magnificent both in terms of service and amenities. (However if you'd like to keep the budget down and extend your stay a couple of days, I'd suggest perhaps only one 5-star, like the Four Seasons in Beijing and the rest 4 stars.) We stayed 5 days in Beijing, 2 in Xian and really only had one full day in Chengdu. Too short in Xian and Chengdu.
All of our guides -- Sunny in Beijing, Amy in Xian and Roy in Chengdu were knowledgeable, spoke English well, super nice and friendly and made our trip as easy and enjoyable as possible. As "foodies" and people who like to explore off-the-beaten-path, Amy was the one guide who really went above to accommodate us in Xian and I wish we had another day there and one more in Chengdu for exploring. What you can expect: the guides will stick to the itinerary to "a tee" and will find it difficult to adjust, so make sure you really look over your very detailed itinerary in your confirmation letter prior to the start of your trip. Even with that, we had tried to make some changes, which still ended up on the itinerary. For example, I had made it clear that we did not want to see the Olympic stadium, but it remained on the itinerary and it flustered our guide when we wanted to go "off script."
We wanted to see museums and wanted to have the guides eat with us so that they could help order. Challenges we got over. Note that the guides do not help at night-- they like to end their day around 4pm. Highlights: The hotels and their buffet breakfasts, Spending Sunday in Temple of Heaven park, the Summer Palace, Forbidden City, the food, exploring on our own, everything in Xian (the liveliest city!), dumpling lesson and meal in a family home, Tai Chi lessons, taking the bullet train, walking everywhere, the Great Wall, the people we met.
Some Disappointments: Having our guide tell the Sichuan restaurants not to put any spice in our food, not having enough time in Chengdu where there are two great museums and food areas other than the touristy ones, no time for shopping, Tiananmen Square was closed off (and our guide didn't know that), Hutong tour was cancelled and guide also didn't know that. We ended up doing some calligraphy, but we got the sense that we really didn't experience the whole Hutong area. All told, however, we LOVED the trip despite a few disappointments that really were inconsequential to our overall enjoyment and CCT made it so easy for us. I would definitely recommend them, especially for a first time trip to China, for price, reliability and ease.
My wife and I (60 and 63), we are from Brazil, returned after 21 day trip to China, all organized by the China Culture Tour (CCT). I decided to hire a Tour Operator because there would be many cities to be visited (Beijing, Pingyao, Xi’an, Chengdu, Guilim, Yangshuo, Hangzhou, Shanghai) and the difficulty of language in making hotel reservations, transportation, tours. Normally I do not use it, I like myself to do all the programming and reservations, but it was the most accurate decision that I took to hire the CCT. I sent emails to several tourism companies in China, and the one that answered me most agile and tailored the program for me was the CCT. I was looking for a private trip, without running around and not having to go in "touristy" shops.
Nora, who coordinated the whole trip, did an exemplary way, before and during the trip, keeping in touch with us almost daily to see if we were well and if we needed anything. In each city we had a guide and a driver to give us support: Tom (Beijing), Jonathan (Pingyao), Cristina (Xi’an), Ben (Chengdu), Cory (Guilin/Yangshuo), Derek (Hangzhou) and Catherine (Shanghai), all very helpful and timely. We felt very peaceful in arriving at the airport or at the train station and finding someone with a sign with our name or at the restaurant someone to help us choose the menu. The hotels, restaurants, tours, transfers, air and train tickets all booked by Nora. I was afraid to hire a Chinese company from Guilin directly and have no way to complain if anything went wrong. But after this trip I highly recommend the CCT, we did 100% of everything that was planned! Nora and CCT, thank you for the unforgettable trip!
We are two women in our 60s with a lot of travel experience behind us. We contacted CCT initially because of a suggestion on TripAdvisor, and boy are we glad we did! From the first email, Nora took exceptional care of us. She was very patient in helping us plan our trip, reining us in when our desires were too much for our allotted travel time.
During our 15 day trip, we saw Beijing, Xi’an, Chengdu, Guilin, Yangzhou, and Shanghai and went on a 4-day Yangtze River Cruise. We opted for a private tour, first class hotels, and business class trains whenever possible and were very pleased. The guides and drivers were, for the most part, exceptional. Even the one who lacked much personality (and treated us like feeble old ladies) was very knowledgeable. Shout out to Eva, Linda, and Alex who went above and beyond in taking care of us. Knowledgeable, friendly, prompt, flexible, eager-to-please, and responsive to potentially disastrous situations, our guides and Nora top the list of our best memories of China.
All of our guides spoke excellent English. We of course, spoke little-to-no Chinese. However, we found that smiling and laughing went a long, long way. We have so many wonderful memories of interacting with locals simply because they were curious as to what we were so happy about. In fact, one of our favorite guides referred to us as “exotic and charismatic!” (So apparently not feeble old ladies!) Seriously though, Nora planned the most amazing trip. She attended to our every concern and request.
For instance, when we found out the Leshan Buddha was closing for renovation, she arranged alternate tours at world heritage sites not often visited by Western tourists. When there was a mix-up with a passport number (that had the potential to derail our trip), both our guide Eva and Nora dealt with the issue seamlessly. (Eva took us straight to our train car, communicated with the attendant, and made sure we were still on the train as it left the station.) I mean, what trip doesn’t have its hiccups? That’s what makes some of the best memories. It’s how they are resolved that count. Between our guides, Nora, and our willingness to laugh and take it in stride, all was perfection.
Price-wise, we think CCT was a bargain. We originally looked into higher end travel companies, knowing we would be experiencing a lot of “foreign-ness” during the day and wanting more western amenities to retire to in the evening… at least on our first trip to China. After much research, we decided on CCT. For the price of a higher-end tour company (with 18 people in the group) we stayed in 5 star hotels with our own rooms, traveled via air and business class bullet trains, and sailed the Yangtze in luxury. Best of all, the two of us made up our “group” which had many benefits, not the least of which was the ability to be flexible with our time and itinerary. We just can’t recommend Nora and China Culture Tour highly enough and are so grateful to all for making our life-changing experience in China possible.
In 1984, as a much younger man on a solo trip around the world on a thin wallet, I stopped in Hong Kong and signed up for a two week tour of China by air. China had only opened up a decade or so earlier, so there were not yet many Western style hotels, no Bullet Trains and not too many Western travelers. I flew to Beijing, Xian, Shanghai, Guilin and Guangzhou on old Soviet TU 154s, which resembled bombers more than commercial airliners. I loved my visit: the people I met, the culture, and the interesting experiences I had, and I vowed to return.
Fast forward to 2018. Retired now, I wanted to revisit China, show my wife the places I had been to, and experience the modern China we read so much about. We talked to our local travel agent and looked online for agencies which would make possible the type of travel we envisioned. We wanted to add additional time and places to my 1984 itinerary, make it an upscale trip, and avoid larger group travel. In our search, we came across CCT which seemed to offer the kind of travel we wanted. Our inquiry was immediately answered by Grace **; she provided an initial itinerary, possible dates, a price quote, hotel choices and many suggestions. We were immediately struck by her professionalism, honesty and dependability, as well as her patience with our many questions. We were also impressed by the almost uniformly excellent reviews on the CCT site and TripAdvisor.
Before I go any more detail, let me say that that we were not disappointed. The trip came off as we finally planned it, with zero hitches. It even exceeded our high expectations. We had opted for flying into Beijing on United and starting our tour there. We chose four and mostly five star hotels, biz travel on the three train travels and five air connections (recommended if you can do it), a half day trip on the Li River (wonderful), and a three day Yangtze river cruise. The total cost was by no means small; however, when our local agent took a look at the itinerary and what was included, she said she could not begin to match it. Cover reassuring for us. The upscale trip was of our choosing but one could reduce costs by staying in smaller hotels and traveling by coach. Grace would respect your wishes and make it a memorable trip.
As older folks, we appreciated the VIP treatment in hotels, with train and air travel - from expedited check-ins at the airport and train stations, and at security. We considered it all an excellent value as a total package. Train travel is something one should experience in China, gliding along at about 200 mph through the countryside. It is rivaled perhaps only by trains in Japan and perhaps France. Air travel in biz was superior to that in the US, with clean, comfortable, modern aircraft, good food, attentive service and on time performance by all three airlines we experienced.
With Grace's help, we came up with an expanded and final itinerary. We appreciated her flexibility and patience in making changes. E-mails were answered without delay and we were given all necessary guidance to obtain our visa to the PRC. In the end, we flew into Beijing, then to Xi’an, Guilin (where Grace took time out to meet with us), then a half day Li River cruise, Yangzhou, Chengdu (the Panda station), Chongqing (to catch the Yangtze River cruise), Yichang (not to be missed), Shanghai, Hangzhou, Hong Kong and Macau - a total, of 24 days. I won’t belabor all the wonderful things we did and saw and experienced except to say that Grace’s input was invaluable. We had a wonderful time, we both stayed healthy, nothing went wrong, we had mostly great weather, and we came back with wonderful memories.
Having a personal driver and guide made everything easier and more comfortable. The cars used were new or nearly so, comfortable and clean. We did not get to speak much to most drivers due to the language barrier but all were experienced, personable and helpful. We were happy to leave driving to them in the chaotic city traffic everywhere. The guides were all very good in their own way. They helped with every detail from hotel registration to check-ins at the train station and airports. They were ALWAYS on time and through them we learned a rest deal more about Chinese culture, manners, the people and history. They did not simply show us the modern China (of which they are justifiably proud), but took us to small villages in the countryside as well. We met American and German expats who were trying to make a go of a B&B and a German Biergarten.
The guides' English was good to very good. Some clearly stood out - like Helen in Beijing, Amy in Xi‘an, and Linda in Guilin. We got to know them on a more personal level and appreciated their sense of humor and laughter. Daisy in Chongqing helped us out beyond the call of duty when we experienced a small mishap. Candy in Shanghai was great and told us a bit about her experiences in the US, and Cecilia in Hong Kong, our last stop, made the city and territory come alive on our tour. Most of the guides did not simply provide canned information, stats and numbers but allowed us more insight by answering our often probing questions.
The hotels we had chosen we all excellent, except perhaps for the Chengdu Ritz which is not in the best location. The Intercontinental in Hong Kong, the Marriott in Hangzhou, the Fairmont on Shanghai, the Renaissance in Beijing, the Shangri La in Guilin, the Wyndham in Xi‘an and the Banyan Tree in Yangshuo were all great, with good locations, wonderful and attentive service and large Rooms. When choosing hotels, we tried to stay with chains such as IHG, Marriott or Hilton to take advantage of memberships for free upgrades, free WiFi and access to their lounges for Happy Hour (free food and drink). Breakfasts at all these hotels was plentiful and rich for the choices presented - Continental, American or Chinese. Our guides always picked interesting restaurants for lunch (included). We did not try goat feet or Duck feet or pig knuckles, but choices were plentiful and there was great variety.
We enjoyed some street food, too. A highlight was dinner at the Beijing DaDong which Grace had arranged. The presentation of the Peking Duck was a show in itself and was absolutely delicious. We watched Erhu players play traditional Chinese music and then, surprise, Yankee Doodle Dandy. Not to be forgotten. Or the many small touches such as ballroom dancing with Chinese in park in Beijing or learning how to make dumplings from a lovely lady in her apartment (they were delicious), or learning how to pick tea leaves and conduct the tea ceremony. Or visiting a marriage market in Chengdu. We had our last supper at Felix at the top of the venerable Peninsula hotel. It is worth a visit for their Martinis in the bar overlooking Kowloon harbor. A special experience.
One thing which took some getting used to is the heavy security and police presence. Cameras are everywhere. Not everyone‘s cup of tea but the streets are very safe, even at night. The trip could not have been more satisfying, in no small measure due to the help and planning from Grace and CCT. We would go with them again if and when we return to China - no reservations.
We recently came back from our very first trip to China and can I just say that China Culture Tours was simply the best in business. I highly recommend this for anyone visiting China for the first time, or even those who have been before. Grace ** was outstanding in tailoring the trip to suit our requirements. After reading positive reviews about CCT, I gave Grace a phone call. She listened attentively to my request and within the next few hours in the same day, she forwarded me the suggested itinerary, including the quotation. Her experience and professionalism were reflected from the detailed information she outlined on the quotation. From there onwards, all my subsequent enquiries were met only with a speedy response. She was even there to remind us when to apply for a visa, when to pay for the tours etc. As everything was taken care of by Grace, the whole process proceeded easily and smoothly from start to finish. She was just remarkable.
My parents and I learned so much through the history and culture of every place we visited. The variety of food and cuisines offered was great and the dumpling making experience with locals was a highlight. All of our guides went above and beyond their duties, in particular Eva, in Beijing, and Linda, in Guilin and Yangshuo. We loved having you as our guides and truly enjoyed your company during our China trip. The whole trip went incredibly fast. All we have left was sweet memories and special bonds with the people who we’d remember for years to come. We know for sure that this won’t be our last trip to China but the first of many more to come. When we are ready for our next trip, we will definitely be going with China Culture Tours again.
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We had a fantastic private guided tour experience through China Culture Tour. We chose the six-day Picturesque & Rustic Guilin by Hiking & Kayaking tour. We worked with Grace to organize and customize our itinerary. She was highly responsive and professional to work with, always responding promptly to our questions. Grace even helped us with other parts of our trip (train tickets, admission tickets, etc.) going beyond the services involved with our paid tour. The company works with high quality hotels and offers lots of choice. We stayed at extremely charming hotels in both Longsheng and Yangshou, as well as a modern luxury hotel in Guilin.
Car transportation was excellent, a very comfortable sedan, and the driver was skilled and very competent. And our guide Linda was absolutely a joy to travel with. She was extremely knowledgeable, doling out the history when needed but not more than we could absorb. She guided with passion, humor, and just plain fun. She adapted and adjusted our itinerary as needed based on weather (we had some rainy days) and traffic (we traveled during a holiday week), using her obvious experience, local contacts, and common sense. She chose local restaurants which she had clearly dined at herself and were here favorites. The food experiences during the tour were fantastic – must try the beer fish in Yangshou! We highly recommend using China Culture Tour for your travel needs in China. We will certainly call on Grace on our next trip.
Beijing, Xi’an, Dali, Chendu, Guilin, Shanghai - Two couples had a better than expected trip to the above cities organized expertly by Nora. Highlights were The Wall, the Terracotta Warriors, the pandas, a fascinating stay at the Linden Center (do not miss) in Dali, a beautiful boat trip down the Li River to the surprisingly wonderful town of Yangshuo,and the Bund in Shanghai. As usual, guides can make or break a private tour like this, and ours were superb. Eva, Sara, Sandy were superb, but special kudos to Dana and Linda. They all went above and beyond (especially when ordering local dishes at our respective lunches). I could not recommend China Culture and Nora more highly.
Can't say enough of good things about the service, meticulous, considerate and excellent all around. More importantly, all the tour guides and drivers we had were simply great. They asked what we liked rather than just taking wherever on the agenda. They asked about our food preference, they tried to accommodate teenager's picky diet. They shared their experience and knowledge about the places, the culture and understanding of what makes Yunnan special, the flowers, mountains, rivers, and history. It was such an amazing trip, from Stone Forest in Kunming to Erhai in Dali, to Jade Dragon Snow Mountain in Lijiang. My son got sick in Shangri-La and our tour guide waited in a coffee shop outside the hotel for the whole day in case we needed him. I know I will go back and I will call for their service again.
We hired China Culture Tour (CCT) for our vacation trip to China on Feb-2019, We visited 6 cities with them and overall its service was excellent. They were always on time, very knowledgeable and flexible to accommodate our request. I knew CCT only through her website and reviews in TripAdvisor, so at the beginning I was a little hesitant to do business with them but I am glad I did. At the end, they performed exactly as I expected.
China Culture Tour is one of the best tour companies for visiting China. Service was exceptional. We felt safe. Virtually a safe and stress free experience. Very professional and well organized. Each day we were picked up at the hotel, taken to see sights we wanted and delivered back to the hotel. This is the type of private tour you would expect.
CHINA CULTURE TOUR Company Information
- Company Name:
- CHINA CULTURE TOUR
- Company Type:
- Year Founded:
- Guilin(close to Hong Kong)
- +86 773 5835179