June 2013 E-Newsletter

News from China National Tourist Office

Learn More about China’s Yangtze River

When North American travelers think of China, visions of the Great Wall and the Terracotta Warriors likely come to mind. But the third longest river in the world, the Yangtze River, is also a sight worth seeing while in Asia – and an ideal travel route. The Yangtze River runs from west to east in China, surging by major tourist attractions throughout the country and offering some of the most spectacular scenery in the world. The Yangtze River basin features the famous Three Gorges, dense forests, and towering mountain cliffs rising dramatically from the river, a sight best appreciated from on the water.

Many cruise ships travel down the Yangtze and offer visitors a chance to see China from a new perspective, all while traveling in luxurious style. To find out more about cruise offerings for China’s Yangtze River, go to www.cnto.org/tour_category/cruises/. Whether your clients are young or old, interested in history or nature (or both!), a luxury cruise down the Yangtze River in China will provide them with the unforgettable experience they’re seeking – making you look like a hero.

Beautiful China

China National Tourist Office, New York
370 Lexington Ave. #912
New York, NY 10017
Email: ny@cnto.org

 


Contents

Message from CNTO

CNTO Study on Tourism to China

China Travel News

Upcoming Events and Festivals

Partner Travel Supplier News

New Tourism Developments

Culture Corner


CNTO Study on Tourism to China

As we’ve noted in past newsletters, the China National Tourist Office (CNTO), through PhoCusWright, fielded a survey of 30,513 individuals, targeting U.S. adults who have traveled to Asia in the past two years or who are likely to travel again in the next two years. As promised, we will continue to share the results of this survey over the course of this year. This month we’re focusing on how far in advance of departure travelers decided on their destination.

China Tourism Statistics

Interpretation: Respondents were asked to indicate how far in advance of departure they chose their destination, how much time they spent researching and selecting a destination, and how much time they spent choosing travel components such as airline tickets and hotel room. The largest majority of travelers (31 percent) chose their destination three to five months in advance; the second most common timeframe was six to 12 months in advance. Travelers spent less time deciding where to go (most spending just a week or two), and even less time in the shopping phase (most between two days and two weeks).


China Travel News

Visa72-Hour Visa-Free Travel to Guangzhou and Chengdu
The major Chinese cities of Guangzhou and Chengdu will allow transit passengers from 45 countries to visit their respective cities for 72 hours without a visa, following Beijing and Shanghai’s recent success with this new policy. Guangzhou, the capital city of Guangdong Province and the third largest city in China, is home to a large airport (CAN) that sees thousands of international passenger arrivals each day via China Southern Airlines. With the new visa-free policy, visitors arriving to the Guangzhou Airport will be able to explore the city without a separate visa. Chengdu, the capital of Sichuan Province, has not released an official start-date for the new visa-free program, but will likely put the policy into effect later this year.

Shanghai Looking to Allow Cruise Visitors without Visa
ShanghaiVisitors to Shanghai through either of the city’s two airports – Hongqiao (SHA) and Pudong (PVG) – can stay in the city for up to 72 hours without a visa, but cruise patrons are currently limited. However, the Shanghai Municipal Tourism Administration is planning to expand the 3-day visa-free stay to visitors coming into Shanghai from cruise terminals. Once the policy is approved, cruise visitors will be able to explore Shanghai without having to acquire a separate visa, as well as enjoy duty-free shops that are in the works for cruise ship ports.

CNN TravelCNN Names Beidaihe, China to World’s 100 Best Beaches
Beidaihe is a beach town in China known for soft sands, temperate climes, and as a summer retreat for some of China’s highest government officials. Perhaps it’s that opportunity to hob knob with China’s upper crust or maybe it’s just the lovely views and enjoyable beach atmosphere that placed this coastal town on CNN’s “World’s 100 Best Beaches” list. CNN cites Beidaihe’s “simple pleasures, mostly good seafood and cold beer” among the attributes – and, since it’s just a few hours outside of Bejing, Beidaihe is the perfect add-on for your clients looking to get in some beach time while in China.


Upcoming Events and Festivals in China

BWFBadminton World Championships Comes to China
The most prestigious tournament in badminton will take place in Guangzhou, China, from August 5-11 this year. Approximately 400 of the world’s top players will compete in categories of singles and doubles for the title of World Champion in badminton. China hosted the bi-annual event back in 1987 in Beijing, but is eager to host the 2013 championships. Guangzhou is an ideal spot, as the TianHe Indoor Gymnasium has a 10,000 person capacity. For your quirky clients interested in international sporting events, this could be the perfect add-on. For more information on this event, go to http://www.bwfbadminton.org/page.aspx?id=23535.

China OpenChina Open Brings Tennis Stars to Beijing
Tennis stars from around the world will descend upon Beijing this fall for the biggest international tennis event in Asia. Taking place from September 22 through October 6, the China Open has crowned past champions from Serena Williams to Andy Roddick and Rafael Nadal. This event is held in the state-of-the-art China National Tennis Center, and brings in visitors from all over the world. For more information on the event, go to http://www.chinaopen.com.cn/en/.


Partner Travel Supplier News

Air ChinaAir China Introduces Excursions for Visa-Free Travelers
Air China has teamed up with leading Chinese tour operators to offer one- to three-day excursions in Beijing and Shanghai. Transit passengers traveling with Air China to Beijing and Shanghai can now tour some of the main attractions of the two cities without having to apply for a visa. In Beijing, the tours include the Forbidden City, Great Wall, and Summer Palace. The Shanghai tour highlights Yuyuan Garden, the bazaar, Shanghai’s old streets and Nanjing Road for dinner with a visit to the Oriental Pearl Tower. Go to Air China’s website, http://www.airchina.us/en/index.html, for more details on these tours in Beijing and Shanghai.

TrainNew High-Speed Railway Service Scheduled for June
The Nanjing-Hangzhou-Ningbo high-speed railway, which stretches across the Yangtze River Delta in east China, began testing recently in preparation for the official service start later this month. This railway trail will connect Nanjing, the capital of east China’s Jiangsu province, and the port city of Ningbo. With an estimated top speed of 217 miles/hour, the new railway service will cut travel time between the two cities down to approximately two hours.


New Tourism Developments

StarwoodStarwood Hotels Continues to Expand throughout China
Starwood Hotels & Resorts recently announced plans to open 20 new hotels in China in 2013. Starwood is the largest high-end hotel operator in China, with Sheraton, Westin, W, and St. Regis properties throughout the country. The W Guangzhou opened earlier this year and new flagships in Beijing and Shanghai, as well as hotels in Suzhou, Changsha and Chengdu, are soon to open. St. Regis, Starwood’s ultra-luxury brand, will open six new hotels in China, as will Starwood’s Luxury Collection. Resorts in the Hainan Islands (often referred to as China’s Hawaii), ski resorts, and urban retreats (including the Sheraton Macao, Starwood’s largest hotel anywhere in the world) round out Starwood’s offerings in China. The company announced it will open one new hotel every 20 days in China.

IntercontinentalInterContinental Unveils 200th Hotel in China
The Shanghai Ruijin has been a landmark in Shanghai for decades, formally serving as the State Guest House of Shanghai and offering old-world charm with all the modern luxuries. It has now become the first heritage hotel in Asia for InterContinental Hotels & Resorts and their 200th hotel in Greater China. The group is the largest international hotel management group in China and has another 170 developments there in the pipeline.

RosewoodFirst Chinese Rosewood Hotel to Open in Beijing
Rosewood Hotels & Resorts’ first hotel in China, the ultra-luxury Rosewood Beijing, will open this August. Featuring 284 rooms, seven restaurants and lounges, a Sense spa, and more landscaped outdoor space than any other Beijing luxury hotel, the Rosewood Beijing will be located in the central Chaoyang District of Beijing.

GHotel G Brand Developing Additional Properties in China
Hotel G in Beijing is a trendy boutique hotel aimed at young travelers and guests interested in unique design. With the success of the property in Beijing, Hotels G, the parent company, has unveiled plans to expand their lifestyle brand throughout China. Two more properties are slated to open in 2014 – the high-end serviced apartments of Residence G Shenzhen and Hotel G Suzhou – with Hotel G Guangzhou opening in 2015. Hotel G Shanghai is also in the pipeline.


Culture Corner

Culture CornerThe Wudang Mountains are a mountain range located in the northwestern part of China’s Hubei Province. Often known for the monasteries located throughout these mountains, the Ancient Building Complex in the Wudang Mountains is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. The palaces and temples in the Ancient Building Complex exemplify Chinese architectural and artistic achievements from the Ming dynasty, and served as centers for meditation, Taoist agriculture practices, martial arts, and traditional Chinese medicine.


Copyright 2013 China National Tourist Office
370 Lexington Ave. #912 – New York, NY 10017