For more details and questions, please contact Judy Stein
email@example.com, In Israel (972) (0)52 434 6709
In the US 847 943 2020
Travel dates: June 9-26. Scroll all the way down for the itinerary.
BRING SPOUSE, TEENAGER, COUSIN, FRIEND FROM ISRAEL OR ABROAD
Scroll down to the bottom – this trip is not a series of bus tours of government-approved factories and sites. Feel like backpackers but enjoy all the amenities, including UNIQUE KOSHER ETHNIC FOOD! ALL FOR $200 A DAY.
*Arrival in Shanghai, touring the 19-20th century Jewish history and city development through the eyes of a Chinese professor of Jewish history;
*Touring Guilin, the “beauty spot” attraction of China – mountains, rivers, lakes, views;
*Boat ride down the picturesque Li River to Yangshuo, proceeding by foot, bike, motorbike, bus and bamboo boat. Visit a rural school and village, have a cooking class, compare fascinating outdoor food markets.
*Special walled city of Lijiang, Yunnan province in southwest China, Tibet until 1959. Tour surrounding mountain villages and monasteries and learn about Tibetan culture from a Frenchman-turned-Buddhist guide; many surprises here.
*Beijing: famous Great Wall, ancient Forbidden City, gorgeous Summer Palace, power-shopping in famous Pearl Market;
*Meeting many Chinese people in different walks of life, hearing their stories and sharing in oral history with other travelers
** Please Note: Program can change for any reason at any time
Tour Cost Includes:
- Accommodation (double/sharing room) in top hotels (single occupancy addition as below)
Local English-speaking experienced guides
- Full transportation by bus (not boat)
- Breakfast plus Kosher vegan hot meal daily (picnic lunches)
- Lectures and group activity learning about life in China
- Airport transfers
- All entertainments, activities, tours
- Procuring visa
International and internal flights
- Visa (about 100-150 NIS from Israel)
- Travel Insurance
- Bicycle/moped rental ($10-20 on two occasions)
- Personal expenses
- Emergency needs or transportation
- Tips (minimal)
Estimated cost: ONLY $200 A DAY!!! – $3200
(Single occupancy additional $921)
Ten Stars!!!! I loved the trip and would do it again without a second of hesitation. The camaraderie, the culture, the insight, the smells, the discoveries and yes the shopping made this one of the best experiences of my life….call me and I will talk your ear off!
Linda Bracha – http://www.gogreenpackaging.com, firstname.lastname@example.org
It’s an intense experience – not for those looking for a relaxing touristy time. You really get the feel of the country and the people by exploring the markets with local guides, with personal tours of the more famous sites, eating in native restaurants where the chefs and staff have been thoroughly taught the requirement of kashrut, staying in clean homey hotels centrally located so as to allow night walks through the streets and squares, travelling the country on planes, boats, mini busses, vans, scooters and bicycles and of course, by foot. Travelling in a small group in a very foreign setting brings with it an empowering feeling of self-reliance and creates shared experiences and friendships that last beyond the trip itself. As tour guide, Judy made sure each woman’s particular needs were met, and each one’s special interest was addressed. She did a tremendous job of juggling China and its opportunities and limitations with the group’s needs, interests and quirks. Kol Hakavod!
Judy introduced us to the many varied life-styles and local traditions from up close. Everywhere we went we talked with people, asked loads of questions, and learned and experienced local traditions and family life; from the professional in the city to the village women in the countryside.
Truly a once-in-a-lifetime experience. Wish I could go again!
For practically my whole life I wanted to go to China. Going with Judy met my expectations, as I we wandered and journeyed through cities and country. Many days we were the only Westerners we saw. The fun of shopping and eating new cuisines, seeing and meeting new cultures, and probably the best part of all, having a guide like Judy that was flexible and enthusiastic in the itinerary helped us all gain a great appreciation and love for a “hands on” China experience. Im thrilled I went and would love to go back!
For those of you who are on the fence whether or not to take the trip to China from my own experience I can tell you it was fantastic. the tours and the tour guides were amazing as well as the things that we did. I came away feeling like I had filled every possible minute of my days with fun and exciting things as well as very informative.
My 21 year old daughter and I had a really great experience. The people in China were really very friendly and wonderful people. I enjoyed the bike ride sightseeing very much. We learned so many facts about China and her people. The scenery was truly amazing. The shopping really was an experience. We also really enjoyed the group of women who went on the trip. Judy did an amazing job. She made our trip possible and a real pleasure. I would go with her again another time.
China Itinerary 2013 – 16 days
Day 1: Arrive Shanghai Monday, June 10, 10 am. Guided by warm and almost-Jewish! Professor of Jewish and Israel Studies at Shanghai University, Liang Pingan. Departure for Jade Buddha Monastery, World Financial Center (tallest in China), foot massage, vegan dinner, river cruise of Bund area.
Day 2: Tues June 11. Ohel Moshe Synagogue, Hongkou Ghetto, Memorial to Stateless Refugees, Sassoon Mansion, tea break in local tea house, former Kadoorie home, former French concession, Victorian Muller home, Arts and Crafts Museum which is part of Iraqi philanthropist Silas Haidoon’s property. Shopping in local silk or cashmere factory, vegan dinner, traditional Chinese acrobatics show.
Day 3: Weds, June 12, Departure for Suzhou, Lingering Garden and Garden of New Master outside Shanghai. (Boat cruise on canal.) No. 1 Silk Factory seeing silworm farming. Zhujiajiao, a well-preserved classical town nearby. Vegan lunch and depart evening flight (7:35 pm) for Guilin. Arrival 10 pm.
Day 4: Thurs June 13, Arrive Li Riverbank by 10 am for boat ride to Yangshuo. Sunscreen and cameras. We are going with the bourgeois Chinese, not the foreign tourists. Then one of the highlights of your trip, a Chinese cooking class on the Li River. This is really fun whether you are a cook or not.
Day 5: Friday June 14, Take bamboo boat to Fuli village, see handmade family traditions of painting – a chance to view/shop for paintings and fans with world-famous Chinese themes of ancient sages sipping tea on a bridge, magnolias, and mountains. Boat back to town and bus to Baisa village market. It’s as rural and primitive as it gets. Kabbalat Shabbat with Fengping. Shabbat dinner (both meals will be cooked before Shabbat) at the delicious and unique Magnolia Hotel Restaurant, Buddhist Vegan menu.
Day 6: Shabbat, June 15, Walk around this town, the large town of the surrounding farm villages, and relax in this lovely setting. If you would like, I will lead you on a relaxed climb up one of the striking karst peaks that rise sharply from the land and water – it’s right in the local park. Shabbat lunch at the Magnolia. Motsash – great shopping for beautiful Chinese clothing, and a nice view of the Chinese tourist. It’s a festive atmosphere in town.
Day 7: Sunday June 16, Pedaling past the rice fields, arrive at Moon Village (Fengping’s home) by bike or moped (anyone can do it- no balance required) , plus her childhood playground, Moon Hill, – climb up for the view. Or we may bike instead to the stalactite caves with mud baths. Visit Xingping market on the way to Guilin for vegetarian dinner and either the night boat ride on Guilin Lake, famous all throughout China for its beauty and colored lights. Or the most beautiful musical, dancing,sound and light show of Chinese legends!
Day 8: Monday June 17, Fabulous authentic experience climbing stairs to view famous rice terraces at Dazhai village north of Guilin. Free time in evening after vegan dinner in town. These are the real Chinese eateries – and it is kosher for our purposes. Take a tuk-tuk – explore. Relax this evening.
Day 9: Tuesday June 18, Climb Solitary Beauty peak or enjoy the gorgeous park with a drink, unique Guilin (window?) shopping, perhaps a foot massage. 3:30 departure for 2-legged trip to Lijiang, via Kunming, the capital of Yunnan Province. Arrive Lijiang 6:20 pm. Checkin at special Zen Garden Hotel and dinner with Alexander Maeir who will cook in his kosher bread oven just for us.
Day 10: Wednesday, June 19, You are now in what was Tibet before 1959. It’s a whole new culture. Thrilling bike tour (option of riding in a bus – the view is spectacular either way) with the friendly, charismatic and professorial French Sinophile, (now Buddhist) Franck Rene to Rock Village, named for Dr. Joseph Rock, revered Western botanist who put Lijiang on the map; Suhe, and Baise where you can consult with world-famous herbalist Dr. He. Tibetan folk- dancing in square with the locals, kosher dinner at Frenchman Alexander’s restaurant.
Day 11: Thursday, June 20, Cablecar up Yulong Xueshan Snow Mountain, one of the most stunning views in the area. See Moon Lake with all the Chinese tourists. Yumei He, college graduate and entrepreneur owner of our hotel, will then host us at a charming traditional tea ceremony – she will probably invite all her best girlfriends, some of who are important in the local Communist Party politics. Prepare your questions.
Day 12: Friday, June 21, Exploring and shopping in Old Lijiang town, Black Dragon Pool Park gorgeous photo op, passing all the fast-food yak-meat joints. Kabbalat Shabbat, oral history with Yumei He, and her cosmopolitan husband, Roman.
Day 13: Shabbat, June 22, Franck’s walking tour of Lijiang town including Mu Family Mansion and explanation of the Naxi tribal heritage and culture. Leave after Shabbat to fly to Xian.
Day 14: Sunday, June 23, See the famous Terracotta Warriors, one of the top sites in China. Vegan lunch and on the way to the airport, visit the very top-rated excavations and museum of the Emperor Jingdi. Fly to Beijing.
Day 15: Monday, June 24, It is a fast day. We can break off into groups mid-day to suit all desires. Great Wall of China at Mutianyu led by my cute, knowledgeable and friendly guide friend Yoyo. We will take the cable car up and down if you want, or walk down through the forest (an easy 40- minute descent). Those who wish will have a trip to the gardens of the Summer Palace (open til 6). Meet up at hotel to dine together a block away at Rabbanit Dini’s Kosher Restaurant (Chabad).
Day 16: Tuesday, June 25, Tour ancient and fascinating Forbidden City with Yoyo, see Tiananmen Square, have vegan lunch at a really lovely restaurant in town, and then then to the world famous Pearl Market. One thing I never understood is the prices of the gorgeous necklace-earring sets of cultured pearls grown near Shanghai, in various pastel shades, for about 20 shekel apiece. This is the time to purchase another small bargain-priced Samsonite or unfurl your collapsible bag, there are lots of knock-off electronics and leather goods, etc and also so Chinese trinkets. Back to hotel to re-adjust your luggage, plead with your friends for space, and onto the plane home. Depending on flight time, those who wish can stop back at Dini’s (a short block from our hotel) or to another branch of the Lotus restaurant also near our hotel, for dinner. You will enjoy that feeling of being out on your own.
Things could change…….