From its areas of grand wilderness to the ancient wonders of the Orient or its bustling modern cities, China is a land like no other. Ancient and modern collide here, captivating visitors to this little understood but vibrant and fascinating country.
Now home to over 1.3 billion people – more than anywhere else on earth – China stretches from the snow-capped Himalayas in the north across deserts and wide plains to the lush tropical scenery of the south.
Splashed across this broad canvas lie the remarkable results of thousands of years of history: China gave us printing, gunpowder, paper and early mathematics.
The signs of this ancient civilisation are around for all to see: the Forbidden City, Terracotta Army – and of course the Great Wall – are each testament to a magnificent past.
Yet China is also the world’s great emerging nation, with fast-developing cities like Beijing increasingly competing with Hong Kong in their modernity.
Criss-crossing this remarkable and vast landscape are China’s great rivers – the Yangtse, Yellow River and Mekong. However these days the waterways are less important than they were: the best way to see this extraordinary country is the railway, and in particular our private train the ‘Shangri-la Express’.