You are now at: Home >faq>First-time Travelers Hints

First-time Travelers Hints

Where is the Yangtze River?  
What is a Yangtze River Cruise?  
How do I choose a cruise ship?  
Are cruise itineraries subject to change?
What communications are available on the cruise ship?  
Is there a dress standard on the Cruise ship?  
Will I see the Three Gorges Dam?  
Will I get get seasick?  
What is the difference between the upstream and downstream cruise?  
When is the best time to take the cruise?  
Do I have to take part in the organized activities on the Cruise ships?  

Where is the Yangtze River? Top

Originating in the Tanggula Mountains on the Tibetan Plateau, the over-6300-kilometer-long Yangtze River runs eastward and pours itself into the East China Sea at Shanghai. Regarded as the cradle for Chinese civilization, it is the longest river in China and the 3rd longest river in the world after the Nile and Amazon.

The river passes through 8 provinces, 1 autonomous region and 1 municipality. It is divided into 3 parts. They are the upstream area from the origin to Yichang in Hubei province, the midstream area between Yichang and Jiujiang in Jiangxi Province, and the downstream area from Jiujiang to the East China Sea.


What is a Yangtze River Cruise? Top

The Yangtze River Cruise usually refers to the cruises sailing through the Three Gorges between areas upstream of Chongqing City and Yichang County. The Three Gorges are Qutang Gorge, Wu Gorge and Xiling Gorge, which are the most beautiful and magnificent parts of the Yangtze River.

It is only gorge in the world able to be enjoyed the sightseeing by cruise ships. Passengers on the cruise could appreciate the scenery along the Yangtze River and take onshore excursions. The cruises feature on-board entertainment.


How do I choose a cruise ship? Top

There are a variety of options— Cruise ships, ferry boats and speed boats. Customers can choose according to budget, popularity, cruise company operators and other personal requirements.

Basing on popularity and budget, star-rated sightseeing ships come in a wide range of choices. The most popular ships are rated from 5-star ships such as President Prime and Victoria Jenna to 4-star ships like President 1. The better the rating, the more comfortable the ship.

Cruise company operators - Victoria Cruises are run by American company while all others are operated by Chinese companies. Most ships are new or have been refitted in recent years.

For customers wishing different experience or who have limited time, ferry boats and speed boats provide an alternative. Ferry boats are a main transport for locals using the river. They may be a challenge for adventurers as they are not as comfortable and do not cater to sightseers as the purpose built star-rated ships do. Speed boats can sail through the whole Three Gorges in a day with very short time stops at the best points and can serve as an alternative for tourists with limited time. We do not recommend ferry boats or speed boats to our customers for safety, comfort and overall enjoyment.


Are cruise itineraries subject to change? Top

Yes. The ship will make every effort to sail in accordance with the planned itinerary. However, guest safety is the first priority for operators. All cruise itineraries are subject to change due to weather conditions or other unforeseen circumstances. They occur occasionally. The cruise company reserves all the rights in these matters.


What communications are available on the cruise ship? Top

Most cruise ships are equipped with TV in the room. Star-rated ships have phones at the reception. Fax capabilities and internet lounges are also accessible on most cruise ships. Customers need to pay when using the communications equipment. Check out with the purser for the exact fees.


Is there a dress standard on the Cruise ship? Top

There are no special requirements, wear what you feel comfortable in. Guests should remember to wear proper clothing or shore excursions and sun protection in summer and warm clothes in winter.


Will I see the Three Gorges Dam? Top

Apart from some special sailing itineraries in winter, all the cruise ships pass the Three Gorge Dam locks. Passengers on the ships will get a close look at the dam, passing thought it personally. Aome cruises also offer an excursion to the dam site.


Will I get get seasick? Top

Seasickness is very rare on large cruise ships because they are equipped with stabilizers which are designed to minimize the discomfort caused by the ship movement. If passengers feel queasy, medicine is available at the ship doctor’s.


What is the difference between the upstream and downstream cruise? Top

There are no obvious differences between taking a cruise from Chongqing to Yichang/Wuhan (downstream) or from Yichang/Wuhan to Chongqing (going upstream).Ships sailing from both directions pass the best parts of the gorges in daytime. To help choose the most suitable direction, we suggest you make comparison in shore excursions, duration and price.

  • Onshore excursion
    Onshore excursions are highlights of the cruise. The excursions include the Ghost City, the Wan County, the Shibaozhai, the White Emperor City, the Lesser Three Gorges, the Shennong Stream, the Three Gorges dam site, the Jingzhou and the Yueyang Tower.
    No cruise ships will do all of these excursions and the company will decide the specific itinerary for each ship. Each ship will probably have upstream itinerary and downstream itinerary. Check out the cruise ships for itinerary details on different ships.
  • Duration
    Upstream sailings are between one and two days longer than downstream sailings.
  • Price
    Upstream sailing cost less than downstream sailings.

When is the best time to take the cruise? Top

Spring and autumn are the best seasons to take a Yangtze River Cruises. April - May, and September - October are the most comfortable time to enjoy the cruise due to the cool weather, therefore these are the high seasons for Yangtze River Cruises.


Do I have to take part in the organized activities on the Cruise ships? Top

No! The organized activities include onshore excursions and activities on board. Customers could choose whatever they want and decide to do them all, pick some of them or just relax on the cruise.


Ask Your Question