ABTA

Tour operator insights

Gain insights into the industry, from these golf holiday experts

“Despite fluctuating foreign currency exchange rates post Brexit, 2017 golf holiday bookingsto EU destinations are significantly ahead of this time last year suggesting golfers are resilient to the forecasts of financial Armageddon. Having said this, Driveline is also seeing increased demand for all inclusive options, brought about by a weak pound.”
Paul Cowgill, Director, Driveline Golf

“We have seen an increase in the volume of golfers travelling to luxury resorts across Portugal and Spain, moving away from Turkey and North Africa. Client feedback shows that golfers are demanding higher service levels both on and off the courses -and the resorts which offer this are busier than ever with.”
Edward Terre General Manager, Supertravel Golf Holidays

“Despite the value of the pound dropping significantly since Brexit, this hasn’t deterred golfers booking trips for 2017. Popular destinations such as Vilamoura [Portugal] and Benalmadena [Spain] are thriving and there are still bargains to be had.”
 Robert Stinson, Partner, Golf Tours International

“Golf tourism to Turkey has tailed off - owing to the ongoing political uncertainty - but this means that, for those undeterred from visiting, the course conditions are better than ever.
However for the most part, golf travellers are heading back to Spain and Portugal - two destinations which are safe, affordable and, crucially, close to home. In these troubling times, people don’t want to travel too far.”
Steve Nicholson, Business Development Manager, Bilyana Golf Holidays

FYI Jo: Steve has requested that a PDF of the piece is sent to him (steve@bilyanagolf.com), prior to publication


“Golf travellers are shying away from troubled destinations such as Turkey and North Africa and it’s Portugal that is proving to be the major beneficiary of this change. Portugal’s popularity is partly due to its gorgeous, great value courses but also because, beyond the fairways, the country offers great beaches, weather and nightlife.”
Harley Mills, UK customer service specialist, Golfbreaks.com

“Golf tourism is growing again and we anticipate that our business will continue to increase, despite the disappointment of Brexit.

"We have seen an increase in travellers to Portugal due to unstable conditions in eastern Europe and Turkey while Spain, Portugal, UK, Ireland and France continue to have the majority of exclusive products with repeat bookers.”
Matthew Roberts, Sales specialist, Your Golf Travel

View the article here: http://content.yudu.com/web/2q1af/0A372gz/ABTAGOLF17/flash/resources/30.htm

Spotlight on South Korea


The vibe
East doesn’t just meet West in the Republic of Korea (ROK). Rather they collide in one almighty explosion, so expect a heady mix of traditional and modern. Buddhist temples, tea houses, historic palaces, hanbok (colourful silk costumes) and hanoks (traditional Korean houses) are juxtaposed alongside skylines of steel and glass, clubs playing K-Pop and chi chi boutiques - ensuring that South Korea truly has something for everyone.


The crowd
ROK has long been overshadowed by its larger neighbours - China, to the west and Japan, to the east - meaning that the country isn’t as clogged-up with tourists. Fast forward to 2017 though and ROK is finally coming into its own as a tourist destination, owing to its harmonious blend of technology and tradition and yes, it's rise as a golfing power. Our advice? Visit now - before everyone else catches on.

The golf
Spurred on by the success of Se Ri Pak - the first Korean woman to win one of golf’s major championships, the 1998 US Open - Inbee Pak, Hyo-Joo Kim and co, golf is seriously big business in ROK. There are two television channels dedicated to the game, while more than 250 courses dot the Land of Calm. Three of the best are:

Jungman Beach Golf Club
Situated on a seaside cliff, Jungmun Golf Club is ROK’s sole coastal course. It’s also the longest golf course in Korea, with a total of 18 holes and 72 pars, and one of the most picturesque: fairways are adorned with Jeju-grown foliage and subtropical plants. Green fee from 91,000 won (weekdays) -128,000 won (weekends) for 18 holes; www.jungmunresort.com

Nine Bridges Golf Club
Named one of the ‘Top 100 courses in the World’ by Golf Magazine, Nine Bridges’ name derives from the eight stone bridges built on the course - the ninth bridge is a metaphorical one connecting the club to its members and guests. Green fee from 140,000 won (weekdays) to 180,000 (weekends); www.ninebridges.co.kr/


Pinx Golf Club
Designed by renowned golf course designer, Theodore G. Robinson, Pinx Golf Club offers arresting views of both the Hallasan Mountain and the ocean. Year-round play is possible while over 30cmof sand paved beneath the greens, provides good drainage. Green fee from 85,000 won (weekdays) - 97,000 won (weekends) for 18 holes; www.thepinx.co.kr


The hotels
Hotels and motels abound in the major cities and on the volcanic island of Jeju - the largest of ROK’s many islands - offering all the amenities a modern traveller could desire. However homestays are arguably the best way to to experience Korean culture and customs first-hand. For a truly unique stay, check into a hanok (single story, tile roof, traditional Korean houses made out of wood and characterised by their traditional courtyards). 

PART 2: Essentials

When to go
Late spring (April-May) and early Autumn (September-October) is the ideal time to tee off in ROK, when temperatures are mild and rainfall is low.

Green fee
From £59- £124 for 18 holes.

Flight time
The average flight time from London to Seoul (ROK’s capital) is 10h, 45min.

Visa requirements
UK citizens are granted a 90-day permit on arrival, providing they have a confirmed onward ticket.

Health
There are no special vaccination requirements for visiting ROK, although immunisation against Hepatitis A & B is recommended.

Getting around
ROK boasts an excellent public transport system - reliable trains and buses link cities, towns and rural villages alike - that puts the UK to shame.

Contact
http://english.visitkorea.or.kr

View the article here:

http://content.yudu.com/web/2q1af/0A372gz/ABTAGOLF17/flash/resources/116.htm

 

Oh Carolina!

Already played (and stayed) in Florida, California and the Capital Region? It’s time to tee off in the Carolinas

North Carolina
Thanks to its intoxicating mix of magical mountain towns (here’s looking at Asheville, the childhood home of writer,Thomas Wolfe), booming microbreweries, sandy barrier islands (Ocracoke island, anyone?), forested mountain ranges - say hello to the Smokies (America’s most visited national park) and the Blue Ridge Mountains (America’s favourite drive) - unique bluegrass music scene, ability to serve fab barbecue and yes - great golfing opportunities - the southern state of North Carolina has charm by the bucket load.

 

The Omni Grove Park Inn
Swing into a round of golf on the historic 18-hole course at The Omni Grove Park Inn. Designed by Donald Ross in 1926, this 6,400-yard championship course has been played by PGA stars Bobby Jones, Ben Hogan and Jack Nicklaus and politicians including President Obama. The course was overhauled in 2001 - and has since earned nods from Conde Nast Traveler and North Carolina Golf Panel - but the feel and spirit remains the same: expect amazing views of the Blue Ridge Mountains from the tree-lined fairways and bent greens.
Green fee from US$75 -US$140; www.omnihotels.com/hotels/asheville-grove-park/golf


Pinehurst
Known as the cradle of American golf, Pinehurst Resort boasts no fewer than nine 18-hole, world-famous championship golf courses but its most revered golf course is Pinehurst No. 2 - widely considered one of the game’s architectural masterpieces.
No. 2, which reopened in March 2011 following a year long $2.5 million restoration by design firm, Coore & Crenshaw, is best known for its crowned, undulating greens, - some of the most complex in the world - set amid towering pines.
Pinehurst reserves advance tee times for resort guests. If you wish to play at Pinehurst and aren’t a resort guest, contact the golf shop for tee times and rates 24 hours in advance of your play date.
www.pinehurst.com

Pine Needles
Two 18-hole Donald Ross designed golf courses have helped Pine Needles earn its place among America’s best golf resorts.
Measuring more than 7,000 yards in length, The Pines course follows the natural contours of the land, by the position of the sand traps and shaping of the greens.
Meanwhile Mid Pines remains exactly as Donald Ross crafted the course in 1921, a rarity among his masterpieces. Its most memorable hole is the postcard perfect, par-3 which plays over a pond to a back-to-front sloping green, that’s framed by majestic pine trees.
Green fee from US$85-US$235 (The Pines) and US$85-US$195 (Mid Pines);

www.pineneedles-midpines.com

South Carolina
Crossing the border into South Carolina is akin to stepping back in time: read charming cobblestone streets, carriage rides, colourful colonial-era mansions, mammoth oak trees dripping with moss and Instagram-friendly antebellum plantations.
Other attractions include palm studded beaches and the chance to get better acquainted with Gullah (a culture created by enslaved Africans in18th century, in an attempt to retain their homeland traditions).
That said South Carolina’s biggest draw is its southern hospitality - don’t be surprised if you’re invited home for sweet tea and Southern fried chicken…

Wild Dunes Resort
The Links Course at Wild Dunes Resort was Tom Fazio's first major solo design. Today, it’s newly renovated and still among his favourites - the ASGCA architect called the Links course “an architect's dream” - owing to the rustling palms lining lush, rolling fairways and a finishing hole overlooking the Atlantic Ocean.
Elsewhere the Harbor Course is famed for its water -  lagoons and salt marshes come into play on every hole. Make no mistake: the Harbor Course may be the Links’ little sibling but it poses huge challenges.
Green fee from US$55 (Harbor course); from US$65 (Links Course)
www.wilddunes.com


Kiawah Island Golf Resort
Sitting prettily by the sea, Kiawah Island Golf Resort is a haven for golfers boasting, as it does, five public courses - step forward Cougar Point, Osprey Point, Turtle Point Oak Point and The Ocean Course - sure to challenge anyone with a passion for the game.
The latter, which plays along 7,296 yards, is arguably the jewel in Kiawah’s crown. As its name suggests, golfers can look forward to panoramic views of the Atlantic Ocean and more seaside holes than any other course in the Northern Hemisphere. Little wonder then that The Ocean Course was chosen as a key location for golf flick The Legend of Bagger Vance.
Green fee from US$300; www.kiawahresort.com

Harbour Town Golf Links
Tiny Hilton Head island - South Carolina’s largest barrier island -  is one of America’s top golf spots and home to more than 400 golf holes. However it is Harbour Town - whose 18th green is back-dropped by a lighthouse (Hilton Head’s enduring symbol) and the Calibogue Sound (the channel between the island and the mainland) - where most golfers want to tee it up.
Harbour Town Golf Links was Jack Nicklaus' first foray into golf architecture back in 1969. The course - which Nicklaus co-designed with Pete Dye - continues to challenge pros and tourists in equal measure, owing to its interestingly shaped greens and lagoons.
Green fee from US$190-US$380; www.seapines.com/golf/harbour-town-golf-links

 

 

Essentials

 

When to go

Autumn (September- October) and Spring (April-May) is the optimumtime to take to the greens. The weather is warm and pleasant, but not too hot.

Green fee
Green fees range from US$55-US$380.


Flight time
The Carolinas are approximately a 13 hour flight from London.


Visa requirements
UK citizens must register with the Electronic System for Travel Authorisation (https://esta.cbp.dhs.gov) 72 hours before arrival. Registration costs US$14 and is valid for two years.

 

Health
No specific vaccinations are required.

Getting around
For flexibility and convenience, renting a car is crucial.

 

Tourism board contact
www.visitnc.com
www.discoversouthcarolina.com

View the article here: http://content.yudu.com/web/2q1af/0A372gz/ABTAGOLF17/flash/resources/220.htm

Big hitters

The Aloha State maybe synonymous with surfing but Hawaii is also a haven for golfers, being abundantly blessed with gorgeous golf courses. Here's a primer on where to play: you can say “Mahalo” (thank-you) later..

Olomana Golf Club (O’ahu)


Framed by the dramatic Ko’olau mountain range in the gorgeous Windward community of Waimanalo, Olomana is where Michelle Wie - one of the LPGA's most recognised stars - got her start. It’s also where POTUS (and O’ahu native), Obama, practises his swing when in town. And for good reason: this 18-hole golf course is divided into distinctly different and challenging nines. The front nine features level fairways with formidable water hazards, while the back nine’s lush rolling hills are scattered with strategically placed sand bunkers.
Green fee from US$39 (nine holes) and US$69 (18 holes); www.olomana.golf

 

Mana Laui Francis H. I‘I Brown Golf Courses (Big Island)
 

Mauna Lani Resort's two championship golf courses, the Francis H. I‘i Brown North and South, are strikingly different, yet equally challenging.
Built on a lava bed, the north course is characterised by kiawe forests and rolling fairways. The signature hole is the number 17- an Instagram-worthy par-3 tucked into a natural lava bowl. Meanwhile the south course - which snakes through stark, rugged a‘a lava - boasts two striking ocean holes. Step forward number seven, a picturesque par-3 framed by the blue Pacific Ocean, and number 15. The latter is one of the most photographed over-the-water golf holes in the world.

Green fee from US$225 (non resort guests) and US$160 (resort hotel guests); www.maunalani.com

 

Turtle Bay (O’ahu)
Oahu’s North Shore is celebrated for its spectacular surf, but two legends of golf and architecture – Arnold Palmer and George Fazio – have left their mark with this 36-hole venue.
Crafted during the 70s, the original Fazio course has holes that meander along the coastline and include breathtaking views of Hawaii's iconic North Shore. However the jewel in Turtle Bay’s crown is the Palmer course, whose setting - think dense wetlands, contoured tree-lined fairways, and a crescendo to amazing ocean views from the penultimate hole – make it a bucket-list course for any avid golfer.
Green fee from US$105 (Fazio course) and US$155 (Palmer course); www.turtlebayresort.com/Hawaii-Golf

Kapalua Golf (Maui)


Voted the best golf course in Hawaii by Golf Digest magazine, Kapalua - set amid a 22,000-acre historic pineapple plantation on the popular island of Maui - boasts two championship courses. Take a bow the Bay course - an Arnold Palmer and Francis Duane collaboration offering ocean views on 14 of the 16 holes - and the Plantation course. Framed by the West Maui mountains, the Ben Crenshaw and Bill Coore designed Plantation course is home to the PGA TOUR’s season opening Hyundai Tournament of Champions.
Green fee from US$219 (Bay course) and US$299 (Palmer course); www.turtlebayresort.com/Hawaii-Golf

 

When to go
The dry season (April to October) is arguably the optimumtime to take to the greens.

Green fee
Green fees range from £54-£23.

Flight time
The Hawaiian islands are a long flight from London - you’re looking at approximately 17 hours.

Visa requirements
UK citizens must register with the Electronic System for Travel Authorisation (https://esta.cbp.dhs.gov) 72 hours before arrival. Registration costs US$14 and is valid for two years.

Health
At the time of writing, no specific vaccinations are required for entry to Hawaii.

Getting around
O’ahu has an excellent islandwide public transportation system called TheBus but renting a car is usually necessary on thee neighbouring islands.

Tourism board contact
www.gohawaii.com

View the article here: 

http://content.yudu.com/web/2q1af/0A372gz/ABTAGOLF17/flash/resources/220.htm

China itineraries

Part 1: Intro

China has always loomed large in the imagination but for a half a century after Mao Zedong led the Communists to power, the Middle Kingdom was closed off to the world. 

The Eastern superpower relaxed its restrictions on tourist visas in the late 1990s leading to a travel boom that is here to stay - and grow.

Make no mistake: it’s impossible to ignore the most heavily populated nation on earth whose mix of history and heritage, mountain lakes, Buddhist cave statues, dreamy karst peaks, paddy fields and out of this world flavours combine to make the Middle Kingdom such a mesmerising travel destination.

Most first time visitors to China tend to make a beeline for Beijing which, in the aftermath of the 2008 Olympic Games, is known as much for the Bird's Nest stadium and the Water Cube, as the tanks on Tiananmen. 

After a few days in the Imperial City, first-timers push onto Pingyao - an old walled Shanxi town that matches the China of your imagination. From here they’ll typically head to Xi’an to view the Terracotta Army before finishing up in Shanghai. Certainly the ‘Paris of the East’ serves as a fitting epilogue to any China experience: with its funky art deco architecture and fashionable shops and restaurants, Shanghai is where China’s future lies.

Other popular tours include the Yangtze River Cruise, offering as it does a rare chance to relax in the Middle Kingdom, and the Silk Road Tour: an epic journey following in the footsteps of Marco Polo.

Yet while these classic itineraries are, according to Michelle Wong, Asia sales specialist at Insider Journeys, “as popular as ever” the rest of the country is opening up. This is particularly true of the southwest “because it offers a wide variety of cultures and cuisines unmatched elsewhere in China” says Chris Stanley, founder of The China Travel Company. 

The tropical island of Hainan has also seen a surge in visitors - not only from tourists who want to return home with a tan, but also from golf enthusiasts for the ‘Hawaii of the east’ has developed a reputation as a golfing paradise. 

And 18 years after Britain handed Hong Kong back to China, the former British colony is back on the map. So much so that companies are now giving customers the opportunity to “add on Hong Kong, to their classic China tour,” reveals David Higgins, general manager at China Travel Links.

The quest for authentic experiences is another trend du jour. “Clients increasingly want cultural experiences,” says Higgins - be it learning to cook Chinese dumplings, spending a night in the mountains with Buddhist monks, attending a tea ceremony or practicing Thai Chi with locals. Little wonder then that Ben Briggs, marketing manager at Wendy Wu Tours, reports “a huge rise in requests for tailor made holidays and bespoke touring.”

Yet while it’s easier than ever to experience China, travelling around this colossal country isn’t without its challenges. Car hire has yet to catch on and trains, although an affordable and adventurous way to navigate China, can be crowded. Buses reach the places trains cannot get to, but rural roads remain in poor condition and breakdowns are common. Added to this are the frustrations of travelling in a foreign country where few speak English, making flying the most convenient form of internal travel.

Booking a hotel in off-the-beaten-track destinations can also be a hassle: again English skills are often lacking and the Chinese run ‘five star’ hotels that foreigners are invariably directed to, don’t match Western standards.

Nonetheless despite the frustrations involved, don’t be deterred from visiting for the Middle Kingdom remains Asia’s most fascinating country…

 

PART 2: Itineraries

 

The best of Beijing and the Great Wall
China’s capital is rich in history - from the magnificent  Forbidden City (which took one million labourers over 15 years to build) to Tiananmen Square and the Temple of Heaven, traditionally a place of worship for emperors of the Ming and Qing dynasties. Travellers will also encounter the Great Wall, one of the Seven Wonders of the World. Once you’ve got the longest wall in the world out of the way, rewarding day trips include Tianjin (Beijing’s port city neighbour), Chengde for its unrivalled collection of Buddhist temples and the ancient village of Chuandixia.
Highlight:
Beijing’s star attractions garner the headlines but make time to go beyond the guidebook: get lost in the labyrinth like hutongs (alleyways), haggle for antiques at Panjiayuan Market and feast on Beijing’s signature dish, Peking duck.
Best for: history.

Operator view: “Beijing and the surrounding area is a perennial favourite and rightly so,” says Ian Tuton, executive manager at CTS Horizon, “as it ticks off the lion’s share of China’s cultural icons in one easy hit. It’s also a great itinerary for anyone who wants to take advantage of the  72 hour visa arrangement.”

Northern Lights
Starting in Xi’an - the former capital of the Tang dynasty - spend a couple of days exploring the city’s atmospheric Muslim quarter, beautiful pagodas and temples before visiting Xi’an’s top tourist draw: the Terracotta Warriors. Take a look at the Buddhist cave site of Longman in Luoyang, then seek out the Shaolin Temple, famed for its monks' expertise at kung fu. Time warped Pingyao is up next, before the Buddhist mountains of Wutai Shan beckon. For a break from Buddhism, unwind in Qingdao - known for its beaches and its Tsingtao beer.

Highlight: The premier sight — and one of the most famous archeological finds in the world — is the Terracotta Warriors. The lifelike army (no two warriors have the same features) was built over 2,000 years ago to serve Emperor Qin Shi Huang in the afterlife, but it wasn’t until 1974 that the army was discovered by villagers digging a well.
Best for: karma.
Operator view: “This is a very popular tour,” says Wendy Wu’s Ben Briggs. “It takes in some of ancient China’s most iconic sights - Xi’an and Pingyao -  but is a bit different in that it builds in a break from cities and sightseeing.”

 


Shanghai Kicks
Shanghai is China’s most modern city, so don’t expect to see any Buddhist monks. But what you will find is the country’s best bars, clubs, hotels and shopping malls. Shanghai is not all about modernity though: The Bund (the symbol of Shanghai’s colonial past) and graceful French Concession serve as the perfect antidote to Shanghai’s skyscrapers. Within easy day tripping distance are Suzhou, celebrated for its classical Chinese gardens, and postcard perfect Hangzhou. Stop off in Nanjing en-route to Wuyan, the gateway to the Yangtze River and the magnificent Three Gorges.

Highlight: Shanghai, China’s largest city, is evolving at breakneck pace. Imposing skyscrapers sit alongside historical sites showing what happens when the Western world collides with the Orient.

Best for: retail therapy.
Operator view: “Travellers get to experience the city that everyone is talking about - cosmopolitan  Shanghai, with its superb shopping opportunities - and see some of China’s most beautiful countryside,” says Insider Journey’s Michelle Wong. “China can be an exhausting destination which is why any tour that includes a river cruise, such as this one, will do well. It feels more like a holiday and offers a chance to take some time out from the effort of getting around China.”

 

 

Hong Kong and the south
Hong Kong is more than just a gateway to the Middle Kingdom. The Pearl of the Orient is where China and Britain have melded and the result is a fascinating fusion of east and west. Explore Hong Kong’s Central district, take the tram up to Victoria Peak, cross Victoria Harbour on the iconic Star Ferry and dine out on dim sum before moving onto Macau. The former Portuguese colony is Asia’s answer to Las Vegas (Macau is the only legal place to gamble in China) but the real appeal lies in the historic centre, a cathedral to both Chinese and Portuguese architecture. For a holiday, not a history lesson, head to Hainan to soak up the sun on one of Sanya’s beautiful beaches.
Highlight: Crossing Victoria Harbour on the Star Ferry offers spectacular views of the city’s soaring skyline against a backdrop of mountains.

Best for: families.
Operator view: “Hong Kong provides a gentle introduction to China,” comments China Travel Link’s David Higgins. “The vibe is Chinese but signs are in both Chinese and English. Kid friendly attractions such as Hong Kong Disneyland help make it a fantastic family destination too. Little ones might not share adults’ enthusiasm for Macau’s historical sites but everyone loves a good beach and Hainan boasts China’s best.

 

 

The sights of Sichuan
The Sichuan city of Chengdu is home to China’s most famous face, the panda bear. Pandas aside, check out the Chairman Mao statue in Tianfu Square and indulge in the dishes of Sichuan cuisine - famous for their hot and spicy flavour. 

Close by in Leshan lies the Giant Buddha Statue. The world’s tallest Buddha began to be carved into the mountain in AD713, but wasn’t completed until 90 years later. And don’t miss the famous Buddhist mountain of Emei Shan. Staying in Sichuan province, journey south to another famous site, Jiuzhaigou Nature Reserve, famed for its bright blue lakes. 
Best for: getting up close and personal with giant pandas, China’s cuddly national icon.

Highlight: meeting the black and white celebrities at Chengdu’s Giant Panda Breeding Research Base.

Operator view: “Outsiders consider Chengdu to be nothing more than a concrete jungle but the Sichuan city is one of China's rising destinations. Home to the famous giant pandas, it’s a great place to sample authentic spicy Sichuan cuisine, journey to the stunning Jiuzhaigou Valley and see some important religious landmarks,” shares Ian Tuton, executive manager at CTS Horizon.

 

 

The Beautiful South

For fans of the great outdoors, southwest China is where it’s at. Guilin is the starting point for the popular Li River trip to Yangshuo, whose stunning limestone peaks will have you scraping your jaw off the floor. Backtrack to Dragon’s Backbone Rice Terraces, one of China’s most photographed landscapes, before travelling to Sanjiang. The capital of the Dong community affords the opportunity to meet one of the region's most colourful ethnic minorities. Continue onto Kunming, the capital of Yunnan province which is geographically and culturally close to Tibet. The towns of Dali (stunning scenery) and Lijiang (home to the Naxi people) reward a visit en-route to Tiger Leaping Gorge - China’s greatest trek.
Best for: beautiful countryside.
Highlight: Yangshuo’s dramatic karst landscape. Gawp at the towering limestone peaks from a bamboo raft  or hop on a bike and cycle through the dreamy valleys for yourself.

Operator view: “The south-west region of China is a dream destination for travellers, encompassing everything from alpine mountains to tropical rainforests and lush rice fields. The people are equally varied: more than half of China’s ethnic minority groups reside here making the province China’s most diverse,” says Chris Stanley of The China Travel Company.

 

 

PART 3: SAMPLE

China Essential
Visit Beijing’s blockbuster UNESCO World Heritage sites before flying to the ancient capital of Xi’an, to marvel at the life-sized Terracotta Warriors. Next discover Shanghai’s towering skyscrapers, colonial style architecture, trendy bars and gourmet cuisine and the garden city of Suzhou. Package includes international flights, domestic transport, hotels, meals and English speaking guides.
From £1198; www.chinalinkstravel.co.uk

 

China Panorama
Witness unfathomable human feats such as the Terracotta Warriors and the Great Wall and breathtaking rural scenery in Guilin and Yangshuo. Spend a morning at the captivating Giant Panda Research and Breeding Base and visit an intriguing hill tribe area. Package includes accommodation and meals, internal flights, entrance fees and English-speaking guides.
From £2460; www.insiderjourneys.co.uk

 

Hainan and Hong Kong
Combining the beautiful un-spoilt tropical beaches of Sanya with the must-see sights of cosmopolitan Hong Kong including Victoria Peak, Stanley Market and Aberdeen fishing village, this tour really does provide the best of both worlds. Package includes domestic transportation and accommodation and some meals.
From £1,249; www.wendywutours.co.uk
 

Yunnan Explorer
This trip covers the main highlights of this fascinating province, a favourite among China travellers, in a time efficient 10 days starting and finishing in Kunming. Visit the relaxed lakeside town of Dali, the ancient town of Lijiang and Zhongdian perched high up on the edge of the Tibetan plateau. Package doesn’t include international flights.
From £1,345;