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Upcoming Programs:
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Olympics in Beijing

August 12-19, 2008
Price: $5,990 per person, double occupancy, land only
Flights available from Washington Dulles or New York. Price determined at the time of booking.

Registration is Open

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We invite you to join University of Virginia alumni, families, and friends on an exciting exploration of China's capital city, Beijing. The focus of our tour will be the 2008 Olympic games, but we will also visit some of China's iconic sites such as the Great Wall, the Forbidden City, and the Temple of Heaven. Several U.Va. alumni have an excellent shot at competing in the games and we want to be there to cheer them on! We have arranged accommodations in the heart of Beijing, hard to come by during the Olympics, and transportation to the games and other excursions. We will facilitate the purchase of tickets for any of the games that are occurring while we are in Beijing and for which tickets are available. Events sell out, so sign up early! You also have the option to extend your stay and visit the cities and sights of Xian/Guilin/Shanghai, or take a cruise on the Yangzi River and see the spectacular Three Gorges.

To visit China today is to see an ancient land being transformed by explosive growth and economic reforms while striving to preserve its artistic and cultural treasures. On this tour, not only will our travelers have the opportunity to attend some of the most exciting Olympic games, but we will also experience Chinese culture, both its ancient monuments and its rapid development.

**Note: Due to International Olympic Committee rules, we are unable to buy your tickets to Olympic events for you. (Requires passport.) We have been assured that tickets will most likely be available for the events that we have chosen. We will assist you in securing tickets.

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Program Highlights

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All accommodations are centrally located four-star or five-star hotels. For the Yangzi River cruise extension accommodations are outside cabins aboard one of the Victoria cruise line's premier ships.

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U.Va. Faculty: To Be Announced

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Day 1 - U.S. to Beijing

Our tour departs Washington DC for a non-stop flight to Beijing, an approximate flying time of 13 hours. Recommended air carrier: United Airlines.

Day 2 - Beijing

We arrive in Beijing in the afternoon. Our tour director will meet us at the airport and we transfer to the hotel. The evening is free. Dinner on own. (Meals aloft). Accommodations at the four-star Xixi Friendship Hotel or similar hotel.

Day 3 - Tinananment Square / Swimming

After breakfast, we'll explore Beijing's historic Tiananmen Square located at the center of Beijing City. We visit the local markets to experience daily life in China's capital and later attend the 2008 Olympic swimming competition at the National Aquatic Center. Lunch will be at Shuxiangzhai vegetarian restaurant. We will also visit the Temple of Heaven, one of the finest cultural expressions of the Ming Dynasty. The Temple of Heaven represents the most advanced principles of architecture available at the time and serves as the ritual center of the imperial government. This evening, we enjoy a special Peking Duck banquet.
(B, L, D)

Day 4 - Forbidden City / Houhai

This morning, we visit the Forbidden City, the abiding symbol of imperial China, and marvel at its expansive architecture, magnificent imperial gardens, and many museums of Chinese antiquities and treasures. We explore Beijing's picturesque Houhai district where many old courtyard homes are preserved amid narrow alleys bordering tree-lined lakes. We'll tour the district by “pedicab” for a lively experience of traditional Chinese life. Later, we divide into smaller groups and enjoy lunch at a local family's private home.
(B, L, D)

Day 5 - Swimming / Rowing

After breakfast we attend the Olympic swimming competition at the National Aquatic Center. In the afternoon we'll attend the 2008 Olympic rowing competition at the Shunyi Olympic Rowing-Canoeing Park. Dinner is on one's own. There is an optional Peking Opera performance in the evening.
(B, L)

Day 6 - Great Wall / Rowing / Diving

This morning, we visit the famous Great Wall at Mutianyu, a rugged section of the Wall that is less crowded and has cable car available. We'll enjoy the astounding views of the Wall as it winds over the surrounding hills. A box lunch is provided. Later we'll attend the 2008 Olympic rowing competition at Shunyi Olympic Rowing-Canoeing Park. This evening, we'll see the 2008 Olympic diving competition at the National Aquatic Center.
(B, L)

Day 7 - Swimming / Summer Palace

We attend the 2008 Olympic swimming competition at the National Aquatic Olympic Swimming Center. Lunch is at a local restaurant. We'll visit the Summer Palace, exploring the beautiful grounds, cruising the lovely Kunming Lake, and strolling through the royal gardens. Also, we will walk the Painted Gallery, the longest covered walkway in China, famous for its exquisite landscape paintings. Our farewell banquet takes place at Shanglinyuan Restaurant in Beihai Park.
(B, L, D)

Day 8 - Beijing to U.S.

After breakfast, we depart for the airport. Our flight returns to Washington Dulles Airport in the early evening the same day.
(B, meals aloft)

Optional Xian / Guilin / Shanghai Extension

August 19-23, 2008

This five-day extension includes all the classical highlights: in Xian, the famed Terracotta Warriors; in Guilin, the spectacular karst limestone formation. We cruise down the Li River and experience rural China, and in Shanghai, we embrace the cosmopolitan exuberance of China's most European city.

Optional Chonqing / Yangzi River Cruise / Shanghai Extension

August 19-24, 2008

The five-day Yangzi River Cruise extension offers an intimate look at life on the Yangzi River. We'll travel through the spectacular Three Gorges, disembarking each day for off-shore activities and touring the amazing Three Gorges Dam at Sandouping. The extension also includes visits to General Stilwell's Museum in Chongqing and to the Chongqing Art Institute and its art galleries. This extension ends in Shanghai, China's most European-influenced city, with its wide boulevards, world-class museums, meticulous gardens, and bustling life along the Huangpu River.

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Program Fees

Beijing Olympic Program:
Cost: $5,990 per person, double occupancy, land only, not including air.
A limited number of single rooms are available at $1,890.
Flights can be arranged for you at time of booking.

Extension Tour 1: Xian/Guilin/Shanghai
Cost: $2,890 per person, double occupancy
Single supplement $990

Extension Tour 2: Yangzi River Cruise/Shanghai
Cost: $2,990 per person, double occupancy
Single supplement $1090

**All quotes are based on costs provided by suppliers in July 2007 and are subject to change without notice. Daily programs will be adjusted and modified according to new schedule updates from the Olympic Games organizers.

Price includes:

Price does not include: international airfare; costs of Olympic Games tickets; trip cancellation, lost baggage & medical insurance; meals not indicated; visa processing fee.

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How To Register

Ready to register? The best way to do this is by phone so that we can ensure we are meeting all of your needs. Please call us at 866-765-2646. Or e-mail with your contact information and the best time to reach you.

The programs and tour arrangements are designed by China Advocates, a San Francisco firm specializing in upscale China travel.

A deposit of $1000 per person is required to reserve your spot. Final invoicing will be done pproximately 3 months prior to departure. Final payment is due 75 days prior to departure.

Deposit can be paid by credit card (Visa or MasterCard). Balance must be paid by check. Make check payable to China Advocates.

Early registration is encouraged as space is limited.

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General Terms & Conditions


Your tour operator will include information on obtaining trip insurance in your confirmation letter. Please note that there is a time frame for securing trip insurance. The University of Virginia will cancel its endorsement of and faculty and staff participation in any program destination for which a Travel Warning is issued by the U.S. Department of State. Vendor Terms of Agreement will specify under what circumstances the vendor will cancel a program and/or under what circumstances participants might receive some reimbursement if they cancel their travel with the vendor themselves. U.Va. strongly recommends that all participants purchase trip cancellation insurance which includes protection in the face of political unrest, natural disasters, and personal emergencies and participants should discuss this insurance directly with the vendor or other travel services with whom they deal. You will find more useful travel information by going to the Travel Resources link on this website.

China Advocates, Inc. and The Commonwealth of Virginia and the Rector and Visitors of the University of Virginia, its officers, employees and agents, act only as agents for the various carriers for which tickets are provided and assume no responsibility or liability in connection with the service of any train, vessel, carriage, aircraft, motor vehicle or other conveyance which may be used either wholly or in part, in the performance of their duty to the passenger. Neither will they be responsible for any act, error, or omission or for any injury, loss, accident, delay or irregularity which may be occasioned by a reason of any defect in any vehicles, or through neglect or default of any company or person engaged in conveying the passenger, or for any hotel proprietor, hotel service or restaurant, or for any other person engaged in carrying out the purpose for which tickets or coupons are issued. In the event it becomes necessary or advisable for the comfort or well-being of the passengers, or for any reason whatsoever, to alter itinerary or arrangements, such alterations may be made without penalty to the operators. The right is reserved to withdraw any or all tours should conditions warrant, also to decline to accept or retain any passengers as members for the tours. In such instances, full or equitable amounts will be refunded. Refunds for unused carrier tickets may be only in accordance with the regulations of the carrier. CST 2064278-40. Registration as a seller of travel does not constitute approval by the State of California. All legal questions will be settled within the jurisdiction of the County of San Francisco, California.

Reservations: Bookings are subject to the terms and conditions mentioned in these sections. A contract has been entered into as soon as your booking is received and accepted. To confirm the reservation, a deposit of $1000 per person is required. 

Documentation: A valid Chinese visa is needed to enter and exit China. In order to obtain a proper visa, a passport is required, valid for at least six months beyond the duration of the tour. 

Cancellations: Cancellations must be made in writing to China Advocates as soon as possible. Cancellation penalties based on the date of receipt of written notice are as follows:

76 or more days prior to departure, a handling fee of $500 per person is retained.
75-46 days prior to departure, $1500 per person.
45-31 days prior to departure, $2500 per person.
30-0 days prior to departure, no refund is made.

For air upgrades, additional air ticketing, hotel and cruise ship room upgrades, tour extensions, and any special arrangements, cancellation penalties are as follows:

50-31 days prior to departure, 25% of cost
30-0 days prior to departure, no refund is made.

For any additional and individual air bookings, all sales are final with no exchanges or refunds.

Trip cancellation insurance is recommended and available. You will receive travel insurance information once you are confirmed on the program.


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