Unlock the beauty of China with our Classic China School Trip! Our 10-day program is packed with activities that cover the Chinese arts, service learning, and outdoor adventures. Get a first-hand experience of traditional pottery-making, hiking on the Great Wall, and visiting the Terracotta Army. With our carefully designed itinerary, your and your students will be able to immerse yourselves in Chinese culture and history while getting a unique hands-on experience.
Welcome to Beijing (北京欢迎你!)
Day 1 of your school trip to China will be relatively relaxed. We know how tiring international travel can be, and you need all the rest you can get before your fun adventure. Once you arrive at the airport and meet your WildChina program leader, you’ll transfer to the hotel, check-in, and go to a Welcome dinner, where you’ll eat Beijing’s famous Peking duck.
Tiananmen Square (天安门广场, tiān ān mén guáng châng) is rich with historical and cultural significance, and that’s exactly where you’ll go. You will enter the Forbidden City, a place to which even the government and the imperial family were not allowed access, and enjoy a walking tour to learn about the history of the palace. On your tour, you’ll learn things like how it was commissioned in the Ming Dynasty (1406) by the Yongle emperor, first officially occupied by the court in 1420, and much more. Jingshan Park’s (景山公园, jîng shān gōng yuán) Coal Hill offers the best view of the Forbidden City and Beijing, so if time and weather permits, your WildChina program leader will lead you on a hike on Coal Hill.
In the afternoon, your students will take part in a student-led cultural immersion activity called the Amazing Race Challenge. Through this challenge, your students will be able to practice their Mandarin. They’ll also get to explore Beijing’s historical Hutong Alleys (胡同巷子, hú tóng xiàng zi) through this interactive and educational game. Before dinner, you will visit a traditional teahouse where you’ll learn about the customs of Chinese tea at a tea-tasting ceremony.
Defending the Nation
Day 3 of your school trip to China entails a full-day excursion at The Great Wall. At WildChina, we always aim to bring you the most authentic and immersive experience possible, which is why we will take you to the Jinshanling (金山岭, jīn shān lîng) section of The Great Wall. This is the most beautiful section of the Great Wall with the least amount of tourists. You’ll also get to visit Hexi village (河西走廊, hé xī zôu láng) near the great wall to experience the rural way of living. Not only will you and your students get to explore local farms, and village courtyards, but you’ll also get to learn how to make Chinese dumplings in a traditional village home. That evening, you’ll transfer back downtown for dinner before getting some rest in your hotel room.
Traditional Chinese Customs
On this particular morning of your school trip to China, you’ll be joining local Beijingers for some morning activities at the Temple of Heaven (天坛公园, tiān tán gōng yuán). Did you know that the Temple of Heaven was once an imperial sacrificial altar? It was founded in the early 15th century and the architecture of the temple signifies the relationship between heaven and earth. You can ask your WildChina program leader to tell you more about the history of the temple during your school trip in China.
To practice their Mandarin, your students can try socializing with the locals! While you’re there, you’ll also learn Taichi from a Taichi Master and try out the Chinese Yo-Yo. As an optional activity for day 4 of your school trip to China, you can request for your WildChina program leader to take you to the Hongqiao Pearl Market (红桥市场, hóng qiáo shì châng).
For lunch that day, you’ll get to try out Chinese dishes in the home of a local family. You will then learn about traditional Beijing culture at a Beijinger’s Hutong Siheyuan (胡同四合院, hú tóng sì hé yuàn), aka a courtyard home. You’ll find that courtyard homes have very classic ancient Chinese architecture. In one of the Beijinger’s courtyard homes, you will use your Mandarin skills to learn how to make traditional Chinese crafts. You will once again have traditional Chinese dumplings for dinner that night before enjoying a Peking Opera show.
Your WildChina program leader will bring you to the Summer Palace (颐和园, yí hé yuàn), one of the most majestic attractions in Beijing on the morning of the 5th day of your school trip in China. The Summer Palace was first built in 1750, suffered damage during the war of 1860, and was restored in 1886. With its symmetrical features and surrounding landscape of hills and lakes, the Summer Palace exhibits considerable aesthetic value and invokes spiritual contemplation. You’ll find yourself wowed by the incredibly serene views.
One of our history experts will journey alongside you to tell you about the history of the Qing dynasty as you traverse the Emperor’s garden retreat. Afterward, you and your students can enjoy a boat ride along Kunming Lake (昆明湖, kūn míng hú) before entering the iconic Water Cube and Birds Nest Stadium at the Beijing National Aquatics Center in the afternoon. While you walk through the grounds, your WildChina leader will tell you all about how one event in 2008 drastically changed Beijing. You’ll also get to see the mesmerizing Chinese Acrobatic Show.
Transfer to Xi’an
For the second part of your school trip to China, you’ll be exploring another area of China, so this day will be used as a travel day. You’ll check out of the hotel in the morning and transfer to the Beijing west railway station for a high-speed train ride to the Xi’an (西安, xī ān) railway station. You’ll meet another WildChina program leader there who will bring you to the hotel. For the rest of the day, you’ll get to visit the Drum and Bell Tower, which displays Ming Dynasty architecture, and explore local snacks in the Muslim quarter.
Terracotta Warriors (兵马俑)
On day 7 of your school trip to China, you’ll get to explore the Terracotta Warriors (兵马俑, bīng mâ yông) museum and have lunch at a local restaurant. You’ll experience yet another tea ceremony at a nearby teahouse and explore the Big Wild Goose Pagoda, which was built way back in the seventh century. Afterward, you’ll get to try making mini Terracotta Warriors in a pottery-making class before dinner. If there’s time, your WildChina program leader will take you on a walk along the Grand Tang Dynasty Ever Bright City.
Shadows in Xi’an
Starting bright and early on day 8, you’ll join Beijingers once again at a local park for morning exercises. You and your students can feel free to take a leisurely walk on the park grounds before biking along the ancient city walls of Xi’an. That afternoon on your school trip in China, you can enjoy a shadow puppet show in the Yanyuan Garden of the Small Wild Goose Pagoda. You’ll even get to learn how to make your own shadow puppet afterward!
On your last full day in China, you’ll transfer to a local Kungfu school to watch a Kungfu performance from the students and learn some basic Kungfu before lunching with them. Your WildChina program leader will take you to the Shaanxi History Museum in the afternoon before you explore the Stele Forest (碑林, beī lín), where the largest and richest collection of ancient engraved stone tablets can be spotted throughout.
And on day 10, you will check out of your hotel and transfer to the airport already reminiscing on all the adventures you had during the last ten days.
A parting word from WildChina
Interested in taking your students on a 10-day school trip to China where you can live out the classic Chinese experience? Don’t hesitate to reach out, our Academic Managers are happy to chat with you. Based on your learning objectives for your school trip to China, we can help you coordinate activities to link them to classroom learning—all itineraries are customizable! WildChina has been working with institutions to provide an experiential learning experience for over 20 years. We want to help you have an unforgettable school trip to China. If you have any questions regarding traveling during COVID-19, please check our Travel Advisory page or ask us directly. This can all be yours soon enough, just reach out to us today and we can get started!