It typically takes 4 days going downstream to see the gorges. You board your ship in Chongqing on your way to Wuhan, along the way stopping to see the many sights and enjoy the beauty of the country.
With a population of 2.3 million, Chongqing is located at the junction of the Yangtze and Jialingjiang river, it is your jump off point to the gorges. Because it is often foggy, Chongqing is also called the “foggy capital”. It was the wartime capital of China from the late 1930s until 1945 during the war with Japan.
DAY 1Dazu Stone Carving
Located approximately 160 km west of the city is Dazu County which boasts more than 40 places which have stone carvings. The Mt. Baoding and Mt. Beishan have the largest concentration of carvings which were created between 1179 and 1249.
Fengdu is also called the Ghost City. Near the Yangtze on the slope of the Minshan Hill stands a temple. In the halls of the temple are figures of both gods and ghosts. It is said that this is the nether world, where all souls will return to in the end.
Shibaozhai is situated at the northern bank of the Yangtze about 52 km from Wanxian. It is a hill more than 30 meters high in a plain area. In the first year of Emperor Qianlong’s reign (1736-1795) in the Qing Dynasty, a temple named Lanruodian was built on the top of the hill. Due to changes in the landscape, the temple is now surrounded by sheer precipices and is now inaccessible.
As the ship continues its journey downstream, we come to the town of Wanxian. This is an ancient city with a long history. It is said that during the Three-kingdom Period (220-265), Liu Bei, king of the Shu Kingdom, stationed troops in the area, hence its nicknameTianzicheng, or City of the King. Wanxian is known for silk, leather, batten, bamboo and wood products. Your ship will berth here for the evening so you may visit the downtown area and visit the silk mills.
DAY 2 Qutang Gorge
Qutang gorge starts at White King Town and ends at Daxi Stream. It is only 8 km long but it is an unforgettable experience. It is hemmed in by moss covered cliffs towering out of the churning waters. At the widest point the gorge is 1800 meters wide, at its narrowest point only several dozen meters. At Kiumen, the narrowest point, the rolling and roaring Yangtze bursts through the rock gate that towers over the water. In history Kuimen used to be regarded as the most imposing gateway to China. This is due to its grand sight and crucial position which controlled the navigation route between Sichuan and Hubei.
At Wushan you will transfer to a motorboat to cruise up the Daning River to view Daning Gate Gorge, Misty Gorge and Emerald Gorge, all three known as the Three Small Gorges. Sial on from Wushan and soon you are passing through the second of the major gorges, Wu Gorge, celebrated for its lofty Twelve Peaks, which rise up into the sky almost blotting out the sky. Most of the time the 1q2 peaks of the Wushan mountains are covered in mist and appear to disappear into the sky, memerizing the tourists. The ship will stop for the evening at Zigui, which is located at the western end of Xiling Gorge, where the Fragrant Stream empties into the Yangtze. The town is rich with folk customs and charming to visit.
After breakfast you begin your cruis through Xiling Gorge, the last and most scenic of all the gorges. You pass by the Yangtze River Three Gorges Dan project and through the lock of Gezhouba Dam and Yichang sailing on to Shashi, where you will go ashore to visit ancient Jingzhou. Here you can browse the Jingzhou museum’s ancient relics, highlighted by a well preserved 2000 year old mummy. This evening you will depart Jingzhou on your way to Wuhan.
You arrive in Wuhan and have a final lunch on board your ship before disembarkment. Wuhan is the capital of Hubei Province. It is located at the convluence of the Yangtze and Hanshui rivers. The population of Wuhan and its surrounding areas is 3.35 million. The city has long been famous as a historical and cultural area. It was a center for trade as far back as the Ming Dynasty. A city tour of Wuhan allows you to see the Yellow Crane Pavilion. It was last rebuilt in 1981 and with its up turned designed, looks even more imposing and graceful than the ancient one.