Highlights of Hong Kong (with Beijing) (4 nights)

SHA 507-201
  • Hong Kong
    • Explore colorful local markets
    • Walking tour of historic sites
    • Tram ride with sweeping views of the city
  •  Beijing
    • Great Wall of China!
    • Tiananmen Square and Forbidden City
    • Home-cooked Dumpling dinner
    • Temple of Heaven
Program Overview
Country: China
Depart: 11/25/2017 0900
Return: 11/29/2017 1700
Duration: Overnight
Difficulty: Moderate
Capacity: Min 16 / Max 35
Category: ILLUMINATE: History / Culture
Program Fee
$2206 (early booking: $2080)

Field Class Conflicts
  • HDFS 101 Individual & Family Development

Attention: Participants MUST have double/multiple entry visa for China in order to leave and return. One additional fully blank visa page is required. To verify you will have enough blank visa pages to travel to Hong Kong, please review the Passports 101 Guide .

Begin this bi-city adventure by flying first to Hong Kong, a city which, although governed by Great Britain for decades, still retains many traditional Chinese features. Travel to some of the more famous monuments, heritage buildings, and historical sites that contribute to Hong Kong’s unique atmosphere. Explore the well-known local markets, starting off with the Yuen Po Street Bird Garden.  This charming Chinese-style garden is the favored gathering place of Hong Kong’s songbird owners, who carry their beloved pets around in intricately carved cages. All manner of beautiful birds can be seen here, as well as a selection of traditional bird-keeping paraphernalia. Travel next to the Flower Market, which is one of Hong Kong’s most colorful street markets. A jungle of exotic blossoms, luck-bringing houseplants, and sweet scents, the Flower Market boasts more than 50 shops!

Later explore the Goldfish Market, which is the preferred source for goldfish and other exotic fish of every shape and hue. Hong Kong residents also come here to purchase aquariums, corals, and other aquatic ornaments. Finally, admire the top quality stones at the Jade Market. This market is a mecca for collectors from all over the world. According to Chinese belief, jade wards off evil spirits and protects travelers.  The final stop will be the Ladies market where participants can buy just about anything! Enjoy the remainder of this first day on your own to dig deeper into this vast and vibrant city.

Start the next day with an orientation of Hong Kong’s more historic areas. Pass by some of the major historical buildings, including St. John’s Cathedral, one of Hong Kong’s oldest Western-style buildings. Also take in the Court of Final Appeal (Old French Mission Building) and the Legislative Council Building. Next take a ride on the Peak Tram and climb 373 meters (1,200ft) and delight in spectacular views of the surrounding city skyline. It’s so steep that the buildings passed look like they’re leaning!  Looking down from The Peak, once can see the world-famous Victoria Harbour and Kowloon, towering skyscrapers, and peaceful green hillsides. Next pass by picturesque Repulse Bay on the way to Aberdeen, the famous fishing village. Here discover Hong Kong’s junk-dwelling “floating community,” still very much a part of Hong Kong life. Participants will have the opportunity to board a sampan for a close-up view of waterborne life.

After lunch, experience one of Hong Kong most popular temples for fortune-telling (Wong Tai Sin) and a spectacular Tang dynasty-style Buddhist temple (Chi Lin Nunnery). This stunning monastery complex has been renovated as a piece of Tang dynasty architecture. The grand and elegant complex will surely become one of China’s great cultural attractions in the years to come. There are other halls containing a treasure trove of religious relics as well as restful lotus ponds. Enjoy one last evening to explore here in the city before the morning flight to Beijing.

Start off the first day in China’s capital city with a rickshaw ride through Beijing’s hutongs, or narrow lanes, before learning how to make the Chinese dumpling, Jiaozi, with a local family. On the next day in Beijing, explore Tiananmen Square – one of the largest public squares in the world and historical site of famous political protests in 1989; walk through the Forbidden City –  arguably the best-preserved example of classical Chinese architecture; and take a cable car ride to the top of the Mutianyu section of the Great Wall of China!

The following morning, explore the Temple of Heaven, where one may even see local residents doing their morning exercises, before returning to Shanghai.

“This trip is the perfect for doing everything you want to see in China in the amount of days we are there. There is no stress to plan and the time is well spent.” – Laurel S. Spring 2017 Student Voyager


Day 1

  • Fly to Hong Kong
  • Local Market Tour (~4hrs, optional)
  • Dinner and evening on your own
  • Overnight at hotel

Day 2

  • Breakfast
  • Walking tour of historical buildings
  • Ride the Peak Tram
  • Sampan boat ride
  • Lunch
  • Fortune-telling at popular temple
  • Buddhist nunnery
  • Dinner and evening on your own
  • Overnight at hotel

Day 3

  • Breakfast
  • Fly to Beijing
  • Rickshaw ride through hutongs
  • Dumpling Dinner
  • Overnight at hotel

Day 4

  • Breakfast
  • Tiananmen Square
  • Forbidden City
  • Lunch
  • Great Wall
  • Roast Duck Dinner
  • Overnight at hotel

Day 5

  • Breakfast
  • Temple of Heaven
  • Fly to Shanghai

Meals Included

Day 1: none/TDB
Day 2: breakfast, lunch
Day 3: breakfast, dinner
Day 4: breakfast, lunch, dinner
Day 5: breakfast