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China Spree

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China Spree

I am planning to travel to China next Spring with a group of female friends who are all seniors. In searching the internet I came across a company called China Spree. I really like the itinerary but have never heard of that company. I would appreciate information from anyone who has travelled with China Spree.

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Sherbrooke, Canada
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1. Re: China Spree

This name has come up here before. Please use the search box above to find those posts.

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2. Re: China Spree

I just returned from a 16 day tour (best of China & HK) with China Spree. Date of travel was 8/6 to 8/21/2011. The pricing was the most competitive that I found. The hotel accommodation were very nice. The Marriott in Beijing was right next to the old City wall where there is a nice walking trail. Also there is a shopping mall about 2 large blocks from the hotel. Inside the mall is a very large supermarket along with other stores. Hotel in Xian is right inside the city wall. Great location if you want to walk around. We liked the hotel least in Chengdu. It wasn't bad, but it wasn't as nice as the others. Although it was recently remodeled, the bathtubs were not. But it was for only one night. The Royal Plaza in HK is a great location. Not far from the Mongok subway and right next door to a shopping mall and about 2 blocks from 'lady's market'. Loved the hotel in Guilin. Right in the city center so nice to walk around and by the Li River. Plenty of stores, street vendors, even an irish pub. Our favorite hotel was the Sheraton in Shanghai. Not only is it brand new (opened in June 2011), they upgraded us to 2 executive suites because they did not have rooms next to each other for us and our teenagers. There is a subway station right across the street which made it very convenient for our free day. Since we were only a group of 6 we did not have a national guide but it worked out fine. Each of our city guides meet us at the airport as we arrived and chaperoned us to security as we departed. Our guides were very informative, answered all our questions. coordinated with the bus driver and restaurants so we never did have to wait. Except for our guide in Xian, all the guides went above and beyond to make sure we were were informed, well fed and comfortable.Not that our Xian guide was bad, she was good, but since the others were so great, she just seemed average. The food was pretty good and plentiful. The morning breakfast was buffet style in the hotel with both Chinese and Western choices. The lunches and dinners were usually Chinese style. I would say the two worst meals were the ones en route the plane - from Beijing to Xian, dinner on the plane and China Spree offered us KFC; from Guilin to Shanghai, dinner on the plane and again KFC. The field trips were fantastics and the buses are all air conditioned. Its best to go with travelers who travel at the same pace. Our group of 6 consisted of 2 retired (60s); 2 teenagers and us. It worked since our group was small. If it was larger, our pace would have been too fast for the 2 retiree. For some 60s, it would have been fine, but the 2 in our group was slow. Hope this helps.

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Xi'an
Xi'an
Shaanxi, China
Chengdu
Chengdu
Sichuan, China
Guilin
Guilin
Guangxi, China
Li River
Li River
669 Reviews
Guangxi, China
Shanghai
Shanghai
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Orlando, FL
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3. Re: China Spree

We are leaving next week on a China Spree tour. They advertise their tours as being an average of 16-18 people. There are 59 people in our tour, divided into 3 groups, all traveling to the same places and on the same flights. Had I known China Spree would do this, I would not have booked with them. It's at their discretion to put as many people together as they like. I'll let you know how it turns out when I get home.

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Toronto, Canada
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4. Re: China Spree

I travelled with China Spree in September this year. I had a great time. I have posted a more compehensive review on another thread. I would definitely recommend them and I plan on using them again for another trip to China. I booked my own travel from Toronto direct to Beijing with Air Canada. I also arrived a few days before to get used to the time difference. That made for a better tour overall. China Spree limits the groups around 16. We ran into other China Spree tours during our stay but we didn't tour with them. They were totally separate. In summary, great guides, great food, great hotels and great fun. Enjoy.

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New York
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5. Re: China Spree

CHINA 2011( Tour with China Spree-Best of China Treasures)

Despite the remark that I read at this forum that those that write glowing comments, must be connected to the company-my husband and I do not work for China Spree!

I have always wanted to go to China and this September,for my 60th birthday gift,my husband and I went to China with China Spree’s Best of China Treasures. Not knowing much about the company, I liked the itinerary which included Guilin(Li River Cruise and the Dragon Spine Rice Terrace Villages) and Tongli(Venice of China).

The hotels were all 5 star Marriott and Sheraton Hotels. All were beautifully new (or newly renovated)with helpful staff and fantastic breakfast buffets. Our national guide, Kevin, was the best! Being one of two couples just taking the land portion of the tour, we didn’t get to our Beijing Marriott City Wall Hotel until 1AM. Kevin had already left two telephone messages and two written messages to check on our arrival and to let us know where we would be meeting the rest of the tour group the following morning. Kevin continued to go above and beyond, taking those of us on the “free day” in Shanghai to areas many of us didn’t feel comfortable doing on our own. Later, that night, Kevin called each of our rooms around 10PM to make sure we were all “accounted for”. On the last day of our trip, Kevin returned to the hotel after taking the rest of the tour group to the airport, to assist us in getting a taxi and seeing us off. This was very much appreciated.

I loved getting to see the Dragon Spine Rice Terrace Villages and Tongli, the Venice of China.Both are not to be missed if you go to China. Yes, there is a stop at a silk factory(I found it very interesting), a jade factory and a terra cotta factory but those were the only places on our trip.

Each of our local guides, Andy, Nicole ,Tony,and Alex were also great. On the bus, they shared lots of information about their country and issues which they thought we might like to learn. They also encouraged us each morning to try learning a few Chinese expressions. Bottled water was always available on the bus(and at the hotels). One night our plane was delayed by 2 hours and, being late, when we got onto the tour bus,Kentucky Fried Chicken sandwiches were waiting for us. Not normally something I eat, it actually tasted wonderful after eating so much Chinese food every day.

I would most definitely recommend China Spree. As stated the hotels were 5 star, we had 3 meals a day(two being Chinese), all admissions and shows(acrobat and dinner show at the Dim Sun dinnershow) were included. We didn’t spend any money except for souvenirs during the 13 days(except lunch/dinner on our last full day-the “free day”).The tour IS definitely packed-fun days but then, again, I wanted to see as much as possible during our time in China. You can see pictures of my trip at these links. www.gailhennessey.com/index.shtml… and www.gailhennessey.com/index.shtml…

If I can answer any questions, please feel free to contact me.

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Guilin
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Guangxi, China
Li River
Li River
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6. Re: China Spree

How did your trip turn out?

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7. Re: China Spree

I agree with the above post. My adventure with Chinaspree was wonderful. Read my review for specifics. Type in Chinaspree under search. Happy travels!

newington, ct
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8. Re: China Spree

i have to say that i agree with just about everything you said - we just returned from a 21 day china spree "panarama" tour and it was wonderful - i had tried to find information regarding china spree before we took our trip and had a hard time finding much info. - it is great that things have picked up regarding critiques of china spree - as mentioned, the food on air china was horrible - but china spree took care of us. i wasn't too happy with the silk factory trip (nothing but a place for tourists - and lots of them - to buy stuff) - a huge waste of time - as was suzhou - but, on the other hand, tongli was great - very interesting . we also had a "tourist trip to the jade factory" and the" terracotta warrior factory" - all tourist stuff - i guess 3 "tourist stops" isn't that bad considering we were gone 21 days - i personally could have done without them - the thing to remember is that chinaspree takes care of you - every little detail is arranged - and the guides care - any problem was taken care of immediately - they try so hard to make sure your trip is an enjoyable one - and of course the price is the best - unbeatable! we did run into other china spree tour groups towards the end, but it was no problem at all. - most of the people in our tour were seniors and we were able to handle everything well. when china spree says it's a vigorous adventure, they aren't kidding - you are up early and you put in full days - the dragon spine rice villages were awesome, but very physical - - all in all everything was really really great and i definitely recommend chinaspree and mr. wilson wu, the owner. - if you have any questions, please don't hesitate to reply to me and i will answer any questions

Rockland County, NY
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9. Re: China Spree

There have been many positive reviews of China Spree, and I almost feel like I can’t really add anything that would be helpful. However, anything so wonderful is worth repeating. We have been back now for almost 2 weeks from our 15 day Mighty Yangtze River tour and I still can’t stop thinking about how great China Spree, the actual tour and the country is. I booked the tour more than a year in advance without really knowing much about the company. From the moment I booked the trip, I knew I made the right decision. China Spree immediately supplies you with your own secure personal account webpage where they show your deposit receipt and all other financial information. They give you detailed instructions on what to expect at the airports, the itinerary and best of all, a list of suggested reading. I read several of the suggested books so that I could have a better understanding of China. One book I loved so much, I’m reading again because now I can relate to all the places that are mentioned in the book.

Everything about the tour was flawless, from wake-up calls to dinner menus. Many people complain about organized tours, however, for China it is quite helpful to have someone else do all the planning and organizing. In addition, you actually get to see more on a tour then if you are doing it by yourself. China Spree knew how to get us to the various places at an appropriate time where we never had to wait. They knew exactly where to take us and at what time to avoid the crowds. We went to a less-crowded entrance to the Great Wall. Another example of good time management on an organized tour was our outing to the Shanghai Acrobat show. If I was doing it on my own, I’d probably plan on getting to the theater at least ½ - ¾ hour in advance to allow for any traffic delays, getting lost, ticket issues, etc. In our case, we walked in 10 minutes before the show, enough time to get settled and had fourth row center seats. Some complain that on tours you only get to see a few of the 9,999 rooms of the Forbidden City. Believe me, the few that we saw was more than enough.

We were in a group of 12 adults which was a perfect size. China Spree usually has small group sizes, a big advantage over other tour groups that we came across. For any group of 10 or more, there is a national guide that is with you the entire trip in addition to a local guide in each city visited. All our guides were excellent, especially Maggie, our national guide. They were all knowledgeable, patient and spoke English very well. It was Maggie’s job to make sure that everything was going as it should and that everyone was happy. Her delivery of her interesting and humorous personal stories enhanced our trip and helped us to understand China more easily than just reading guide books.

I did not expect to like the food because I thought I’d get bored of Chinese food every day, breakfast, lunch and dinner for two weeks straight. I was pleasantly surprised. There is enough variety to make it interesting and the food was decent. Breakfasts were always amazing buffets with every type of food imaginable, including sushi and Western fare. Lunch and Dinner were served family style on a Lazy Susan. This took a little getting used to, but turned out to be easier than the one meal that food got passed around. Each province had a different style of food, so that provided some variety. One night we had a dumpling dinner and one lunch was a “hot pot”. Another lunch was in someone’s house. For every lunch and dinner we were entitled to 2 glasses of beer, cola or Sprite. China Spree supplied 2 bottles of water everyday plus there was bottled water in the hotel rooms. The group all teased that once we were home we wouldn’t go to a Chinese restaurant for at least a year, but we ended up seeking Chinese food again after one week home.

Our Air China flight was long (13 ½ hours) but uneventful and always on time. In total we took six different flights during our two weeks going from city to city (including 2 to get home). The food on Air China wasn’t the best but they served food even on short 2 hour flights. Besides flying, we were on almost every mode of transportation possible. We traveled by bus, Bullet train, cable car, ferry, cruise line, peapod, rickshaw, dragon boat, gondola, subway and tram. Traffic is not to be believed. I once thought driving in NYC and Boston was bad until I experienced Lima Peru. Now even Lima seems like nothing. I was just glad I wasn’t responsible for figuring out how to get from one place to another.

Shopping was kept to a minimum, which I liked but others might have wanted more. However, if you needed or wanted to shop, the last day was a free day in Shanghai which is a shoppers’ paradise and you can get everything that you might have seen in the other cities.

The hotels were excellent; beautiful lobbies, great brunches, clean and modern. I might review them separately under hotel reviews. The boat, the MV President Prime which we took for the Yangtze River cruise is a fairly new boat, and although nothing like the big ocean liners that go to the Caribbean, the rooms were a decent size, each with their own balcony. It had several bars/lounges including a cigar bar. The cruise was mid-way through our two weeks which was nice because this was the more relaxed part of the trip so it was nice to break up the hectic days with some pleasurable sailing. The gorges, should I say were “gorgeous” and we enjoyed the excursion to the Three Gorges Dam. The entertainment however, was pretty bad. Three nights on the boat was ideal. Some cruises are for four nights and that is too long.

We can’t stop raving about this trip. China is quite different from what we expected it to be. China Spree definitely deserves most of the credit for our enjoyment and fascination with China. China Spree gives you so much for a great price. I don’t know what could have been better with a more expensive tour. We originally thought that China would be a once-in-a-lifetime trip but there are so many more places to see in China that we would consider going again. We would definitely go with China Spree; I just wish they went to other places besides China. (No, I don’t work for them). Feel free to contact me for more information.

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The Great Wall at Badaling
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Beijing, China
Shanghai
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Yangtze River Cruise
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Chongqing, China
San Jose, CA
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10. Re: China Spree

My husband and I just returned from a China Spree-Golden Triangle tour. Absolutely amazing! In 8 days we saw a variety of sites, stayed in wonderful hotels, ate the most delicious food, and did not have to worry about anything - all arrangements had been addressed for us. It was wonderful!!

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