2020 Hill-Murray China Cultural Journey
|Travel Dates:||June 10, 2020 - June 20, 2020|
Airfare not included in program tuition
There are two options for payment, including an easy installment plan. Follow the option which works best for your family.
Program Tuition: $2,890
Pay in Full
All prices in United States Dollars.
China Cultural Journey
As the 21st century unfolds, it is clear that China will continue to take a leading role in shaping the way our shared world develops. The world’s most populous nation – and dynamic economy – has as its backdrop 5,000 years of history and is home to a wide variety of rich cultural traditions and exotic cuisines. Furthermore, China is the world’s fourth largest country in area, with wide geographic diversity and stunning natural beauty.
Your time in China can include visits to the Great Wall of China, Tiananmen Square, the Forbidden City, and exotic markets. You may choose to study Mandarin, Kung Fu, Chinese cuisine, Tai Chi, or calligraphy. Visit isolated villages and staggering Himalayan peaks on the Tibetan plateau, or learn from business leaders and government officials at thought-provoking seminars. You will bike through rice paddies and traditional farming villages, immersing yourself in the local community and landscape. We are excited to bring you to this wondrous land for an adventure you will never forget.
Cultural Journeys provide deep insight into the history, culture, and natural heritage of our host countries through authentic immersive experiences. Students will explore ancient ruins, sample new foods, and develop valuable leadership skills.
Check out some of the featured experiences of your program!
Practice Mandarin in the cradle of Chinese civilization
Walk the streets of Song dynasty China
Wander the Hutongs and marvel at the wonders of imperial Beijing
Visit the unrestored portion of the Great Wall of China
Ride a bullet train in Shanghai
Admire the skyline of Pudong
We work hard to create safe, engaging, and immersive itineraries for our travelers, but given the unpredictable nature of international travel we must remain flexible in our planning. Changes to a schedule are uncommon but if inclement weather pushes us off course or an unexpected opportunity arises which travelers are excited about, we reserve the right to adjust programming in the best interest of the group.
|1||Minneapolis - Beijing||Today we'll depart the The Twin Cities and fly to Beijing.||In flight|
|2||Beijing||After crossing the international dateline, we'll arrive at Beijing International Airport in the evening. We'll settle into our accommodations in one of Beijing's oldest hutong alleyway neighborhoods dating back to the Ming dynasty. We'll have our first dinner together and rest up for our upcoming adventure!||Drum Tower Hostel or Sleepy Inn|
|3||Beijing||We'll begin our morning bright and early with a hutong scavenger hunt, exploring our neighborhood and soaking up Beijing's unique culture. We'll make our way to the Drum & Bell Tower Square for a demonstration of how time was kept in ancient times by beating drums. We'll then hop on the subway heading towards Qianmen, the old front gate of the city wall. We'll walk through and tour Tiananmen Square, and reflect on here. We'll make our way to the Forbidden City, the Chinese Imperial Palace from the Ming Dynasty to the end of the Qing Dynasty. Time allowing, we'll visit the emperor's impressive collection of elaborate mechanized clocks from all over the world at the Hall of Clocks. After a busy day, we'll spend the late afternoon in Jingshan park and enjoy the sweeping views of the Forbidden City from above.||Drum Tower Hostel or Sleepy Inn|
|4||Beijing||Today we'll take a private bus to the arts district in the northeast corner of the city. We'll learn about contemporary art, the role of artists in society, and make studio visits to see where many of China's premiere practicing artists live and work. We'll engage in our own art education activity at Three Shadows Photography Art Centre. We'll also experience life in Caochangdi, a thriving urban village that is home to many world-renowned artists and galleries. On the way back to the city, we'll drive by the nearby Olympic Park, constructed for the 2008 Olympic games, and see the beautiful architecture of the Bird's Nest and the Water Cube lit up at night. In the evening, we'll take a cooking class to try our hand at crafting the Chinese cuisine we've been enjoying (with an optional opportunity to make dumplings or handmade noodles!).||Drum Tower Hostel or Sleepy Inn|
|5||Lianhuachi - Beijing||Today we'll visit one of the most important cultural sites on the planet: the Great Wall of China! We'll start our climb on the Wild Wall in Lotus Pond Village (taking time to get a sense of life in a rural village outside the city) and eventually connect to the restored Mutianyu section of the Great Wall. After taking as many photos as we can stand, we'll have our choice of ways to descend, either via cable car or toboggan rides. We'll enjoy a meal at a small family-run restaurant to get a sense of rural home-style Chinese cooking.||Drum Tower Hostel or Sleepy Inn|
|6||Beijing - Shanghai||For our final morning in Beijing, we'll either test our bargaining skills at the famed Pan Jian Yuan flea market or visit Beijing's largest and most active buddhist temple, the Yonghegong Lama Temple . In the afternoon, we'll take the high-speed train from Beijing to Shanghai. Upon arrival, we'll settle into our accommodations and head to dinner. In the evening, we'll walk along Huangpu River on the Bund, appreciating the turn of the 20th century architecture of the former International Settlement in contrast to the hyper-futuristic skyline of Pudong just across the water.||Shanghai Hotel|
|7||Shanghai||We'll stroll, shop, and people watch while taking a walking tour of the French Concession. Later, we'll visit the Yuyuan Gardens and Market to hone our bargaining skills. In the gardens, we'll take a trip back in time and learn about the aspects of traditional scholar-official society that led to the creation and cultivation of these spaces. We'll be sure to sample Shanghai's famous xiaolongbao or soup dumplings!||Shanghai Hotel|
|8||Shanghai||Today we'll explore the pedestrian eating and entertainment district of Xintiandi and the Shikumen museum to learn about the Shanghai equivalent of Beijings's hutong. Next, we'll enjoy ShanghaiÛªs take on the arts by exploring Moganshan Lu district.||Shanghai Hotel|
|9||Shanghai||We'll get a broader view of ChinaÛªs breakneck development at the Urban Planning Museum. We'll also visit the Shanghai Museum nearby, considered to be one of the country's best museums and check out People's Park along the way. We'll wander through the Tianzifang shopping area before saying farewell with a karaoke party!||Shanghai Hotel|
|10||Shanghai - Minneapolis||Today we'll travel at over 250mph on the Maglev train to Shanghai Pudong International Airport. Fly home!||Airplane|
Safety and Support
EASY FUNDRAISING & PAYMENT
24/7 GLOBAL EMERGENCY LINE
HIGHLY VETTED PARTNERS
PRIVATE GROUP GUARANTEE
COMPREHENSIVE CURRICULUM SUPPORT
DEDICATION TO CULTURAL ENGAGEMENT
I was very concerned about my daughter who has a peanut allergy travelling to a foreign country for the first time without us. Walking Tree was very sensitive to my concerns and reassured me that this is something they could handle and they did! I would send her again in a heartbeat. Thank you Walking Tree.
Parent of Emilie, traveler on 2018 Service Program to Costa Rica
Your Adventure Includes
In order to give our travelers the best possible price, we break out airfare from the Program Tuition. We will still handle all booking and ticketing via our flight partner who has access to special fares not available to the general public. You will be invoiced for the flight once we are able to secure the group’s airline contract.
Program Tuition Excludes: Premiere Travel insurance, baggage fees, airline minor fees, passport/visa fees, laundry, souvenirs, and activities not listed on itinerary.
Need to Raise Money? We have you covered.
Our travelers are provided with funding opportunities that are easy to implement and fun to take part in. Our flagship fundraiser involves selling fair trade, organic, carbon-neutral coffee from a women’s collective in Peru. There is no limit to the amount you can earn, so get started now by clicking the link below!
Why should high school students travel abroad? What happens if a participant gets sick? How quickly do we need to enroll? We’re sure you have plenty of questions and we’ve got you covered! Visit our Resource Center to discover the answers to your most pressing questions and contact us anytime with additional questions.