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Explore China – the North-east and North Korea

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Explore China – the North-east and North Korea, September 6 to 26

The itinerary for this has changed since the earlier promotion. Now travelling further north in Heilongjiang, we have moved forward to September to avoid the onset of the severe winter.

A further tour of natural wonderlands, different cultures and food, and some significant historical events. A Unesco volcanic geopark, wetlands bird sanctuary, Siberian Tigers, and on the North Korean border, Changbai Mountain. International influences – Russian, the Qing dynasty Manchu origins, the Pu Yi puppet Manchuguo headquarters, Japanese conquest, and the northern fringes of the Korea/USA war.

This tour takes us to the farthest north NZCFS has ever delivered a tour in China, to 49 degrees north in Heilongjiang province. But do not worry, we will start there in early September to dodge the onset of the extreme winter! Here, the Unesco Global Geopark of Wudalianchi is a volcanic wonderland, with five lakes formed in the lava rock, set in an area of very northern forest and Russian influences.

Travelling south through Jilin and Liaoning, the tour also includes a 4 day excursion into North Korea, and ends with visits to Tianjin and Beijing.

Key Locations:

  • Heilongjian Province
  • Jilin Province
  • Liaoning Province
  • North Korea: 4-day Excursion
  • Tianjin, Beijing

Travel to Qiqihar, near the north-east border with Inner Mongolia, where we will visit a wetlands area and the red-neck stork habitat, and spend time in Harbin for this beautiful capital’s sites. Explore the Russian architecture in Central Street and St Sofia Church, stroll by the Songhua River, visit Stalin Park, and the extensive Siberian Tiger Park. Lament that we did not come in winter for the Ice Festival!


Moving South to the capital of Jilin Province, Changchun, we will visit the Manchu State puppet headquarters created briefly by the exiled Last Emperor Pu Yi and the Japanese invaders. Take a train to Changbai Shan, the mountain on the border of North Korea.

South to Liaoning, the capital city Shenyang, and to Dandong. This is again on the border of North Korea, which can be viewed across the Yalu River, the northern most point of the US-Korean war. The interesting connection for New Zealanders is that it is here that our godwits fly non-stop every southern autumn on their way to the Arctic circle, and return in Spring. Travel to Dalian, the southernmost city of Liaoning Province.

Take the train to Tianjin, eat the famous Goubuli steamed buns of Tianjin in Guwenhua ancient culture street. Other sites unique to Tianjin, then to Beijing to round off the trip.

For more details, visit the tours page