Yangtze Explorer (also called Yangzi Explorer) under Sanctuary Retreats is the most luxury, and the only super 5-star ship on the Yangtze River. Carrying just 124 passengers, it offers the finest and the most personalized one-on-one service (highest crew to passenger ratio on the river of 1:1) to ensure every level of comfort for an intimate cruising experience.
Good News 2023: 1) Except for the classic cruise itineraries (4 Days Chongqing to Yichang Cruise and 5 Days Yichang to Chongqing Cruise), it is also available to have a loop curise trip that allow travelers to enjoy a longer vacation. 2) In some schedules, travelers will appreciate the enchanting scenery of World UNESCO natural heritage site of Shennongjia, the world's only place to close up with wild golden monkeys, seek the tracks of wild men, and enjoy a cool summer holiday, etc. 3) Yangtze Explorer is now selling at the best price ever. You can even enjoy a big discount if you book before Feb. 20, 2023. Please make booking ASAP!
- 3N & 4D Chongqing - Yichang Cruise
- 4N & 5D Yichang - Chongqing Cruise
- 7N & 8D Chongqing - Yichang - Chongqing (or Yichang - Chongqing - Yichang) Cruise
Practical Information, Useful Advice & Tips
Tips for Booking your Cruise:
1. Please Provide Complete Information for Booking
When booking a Yangtze cruise ship, please provide us the complete information including your and your group members’ name, nationality (if you have two nationalities, please show us the nationality used for entry visa), gender, passport number, date of birth, your favorite cabin and amount of cabins, and other personal requirements.
2. Valid Documents & Real-name Registration
When booking the Yangtze cruise ships with us, please provide us the correct passport info, like your name and passport number. Real-name registration is needed when booking the cruise. If there is any change for your passport, please contact us and provide us the latest personal info that we should deliver to the cruise company once you changed.
3. Confirmation Letter
Once your booking information is complete and we will inform the cruise company to reserve the cabins/beds for you. Your travel consultants will send you the “CONFIRMATION LETTER” which contains important ship itinerary & transportation info, your personal information and other tips. Once you receive the confirmation letter, you can go on for payment.
4. What’s Included & Excluded?
The following items are included in your cruise fare and there is no need to pay when you board a cruise ship.
- Entrance Fees: The arranged shore excursions listed in the itinerary of your cruise ship.
- Transfers: Bus between Yichang East Railway Station / Yichang Three Gorges Cruise Terminal and Maoping Port.
- Meals: The daily meals (specified with “B”, “L” or “D”) on your cruise ship.
- Cabins: A bed in the cabin as specified in the itinerary. You could enjoy your room
during daytime and night. Usually,
Chongqing to Yichang for 3 nights onboard;
Yichang to Chongqing for 4 nights onboard;
- Activities & Lectures: Captain Welcome Party, cabaret shows, fashion shows, Chinese Yangtze culture and history lectures, Captain Farewell party;
- Cleaning: room cleaning service every day;
- Local guides for the arranged shore excursions;
- Accident Injury Insurance;
- Service Charge & Government Taxes.
The following items are excluded in the Yangtze cruise fare. If you want to enjoy the services, you need to pay extra fees accordingly.
- Transfers: Transportation between Chongqing Jiangbei Airport / Chongqing North Railway Station and Chongqing Chaotianmen Port; transportation between Yichang Sanxia Airport and Yichang Three Gorges Cruise Terminal / Yichang East Railwat Station.
- Optional Shore Excursions: Shore excursions are marked “Optional” which needs extra pay.
- Personal Expenses: Expenses of a purely personal nature such as laundry, clinic service, faxes, telephone calls, spa, salon, shopping, Internet, DVDs, etc.
- Meals: Any meals which are not specified with "B", "L", or "D".
- Single Room Supplement: If you want to stay in one cabin (usually two beds in one cabin) on your own, you need to pay higher than one room shared with another.
- Tip: There is a mandatory service tip required to be paid when checking in the cruise, you can pay at the ship reception counter. You can decide to pay or not for volunteer tips to river guide, cruise director and staff onboard.
Yangtze River will be a kind of foggy from the latter half of October to next March or so, and sometimes it might be foggy in summer time. And the rainy season of Yangtze will be July to August or so.
Note: if you book flights by yourselves, please kindly consider these weather factors and book the suitable timing fight, or we can assist you to book the flights, more details please inquire your travel consultant.
Tips for Embarkation:
1. Check Emails before Cruise
Please kindly check your mailbox again 3-1 days before you take the cruise, because if there is any update or slight change from the ship company, we will inform you by email, so checking it again is better. And it will be more convenient if you can provide a cellphone number for emergent calls.
2. Private Transfer/ Taxi-taking / Porter
Private transfer: To transfer smoothly between the airport, railway stations and port both in Chongqing and Yichang, it is recommended to use our private transfer service. Usually, there are two ways - transfer with guide and transfer without guide. If you need the service, please kindly inquiry your travel consultants.
Taxi-taking: If you choose taxi, the transfer cost will be cheaper. When the booking is done, we will send you the confirmation letter which includes the detailed information for taxi taking. To know more details about taxi taking, you can read How to Get to Chongqing & Yichang Ports.
Porter: Please kindly note that if you do not book private transfer with us and need to hire the local porters to carry your luggage in either Chongqing or Yichang, the price is RMB15/per luggage, please confirm the price with the porters before using their service, some porters might ask for much more than RMB15/per luggage if not checking price beforehand.
3. Collect Cruise Ticket & Get Security Check
Yangtze cruisers need to collect your cruise ticket with real-name info signed at the corresponding port in Chongqing / Yichang / Nanjing / Shanghai (please make sure your passport and ticket with consistent information). After the ticket collecting, you'll be followed to get security check before board the ship.
4. Boarding Documents/ Boarding Time & Boarding Pier
Boarding Documents: The booking system of the cruise is just like the electronic flight tickets. Just showing your valid passport at the ship front desk would be fine. After all booking is done, we will send you the confirmation letter, you can print it out and bring it with you along the tour.
Boarding Time and Boarding Pier:
- 4-day downstream cruise from Chongqing to Yichang
Boarding time is 17:00-20:30, the ship sails around 21:00-22:00 from Chongqing
- 5-day upstream cruise from Yichang to Chongqing
Boarding time is 17:00-00:00, the ship does not sail until next day morning from Yichang.
Tips for Life Onboard & Shore Excursions:
1. Cabin Arrangement
For most of the ships, the reserved basic cabins will be arranged on the main deck (usually Second Floor). The ship company will charge floor upgrading fee if you want to upgrade your cabins to higher floors, the price is different according to the different cruise companies, if necessary please inquiry your travel consultant for the details of this. And after check in the ship, if there is any problem with your cabin, please let the ship reception know ASAP so that adjustment can be made accordingly. If you need any urgent assistance from our company, please contact your travel consultant immediately.
Extra Bed: Not all ships are spacious enough to hold an extra bed, so if you need a cabin with one extra bed, please kindly inquire your travel consultant for the recommendation of specific ships.
2. Service Onboard
No disposables offering: All Yangtze cruises will not offer disposables (including toothpaste, toothbrush, comb, shaver, bath sponge, shoe polish, sanitary bag, etc.) since July 15, 2023 due to the advocacy of sustainable development of the Yangtze. We appreciate that you prepare the relative items for the Yangtze cruise and join us to protect our globe together!
Drinks: Wines are not a part of the free drinks, only some soft drinks are provided for free on ship. Drinks on the ship can be expensive; if necessary you can prepare some drinks or snacks before boarding the ship. To know more about drinks, please check Yangtze Cruise Drinking & Beverages.
Foods: Some ships provide mostly buffet meals but some provide mostly table meals, it depends on which ship you are taking. If you have any diet habit, please kindly let us know or let the ship receptionist know, so that the according arrangement can be made.
Elevator: Most of the ships are equipped with 1 to 2 elevators. Please check the “Overview Page” of each ship to check this.
Medical Service: There will be a clinic on the ship, but their service can be expensive, please kindly note it.
Internet Service: The ship does not have wifi, but the business center has internet service available and it needs extra pay. The price will be different according to different ships.
Hair-dryer: Almost every cabin has hair-dryer and if there is not, you can borrow one from the front desk.
Adaptor: If you want to charge some electronic products and without bringing the adaptor, you may check with the ship front desk to see they have the right adaptor on ship, but bring the right adaptor from home is convenient for your China or Yangtze tour.
3. Optional Excursions
Besides the listed shore excursions listed in your itinerary, there usually will be 2 optional shore excursions in each cruise term and it is not part of the cruise itinerary, the cost is around RMB290=USD46/per person per optional shore excursion, and the optional shore excursions differ from different cruise lines, and it is not compulsory. To see exact optional excursions offered by each company, you can head to our Yangtze Cruise Shore Excursions.
Some shore excursions like “Fengdu Ghost City” / Shibaozhai Red Pagoda / White Emperor City need some steps climbing; it might a bit challenging for some visitors who have problems with steps, in this case visitors can stay on the ship without join in the shore excursion (no refund). And booking a ship with elevator will be more convenient actually. Please kindly note it.
Tips for Disembarkation:
1. Transportation for Departure
To transfer smoothly between the port and airport/railway station, you can ask ideas at the front desk. Some cruise company may arrange the coaches sending travelers directly to the airport and railway station which is very convenient and economic. Besides, you can use our worry free private car service and our local guide and driver (or driver only) will pick you up at the port and escort you to the airport/railway station or other places.
2. In-depth Sightseeing in Yangtze Port Cities
If you want a half-day tour in Chongqing or Yichang before leave, you can enjoy the service and please tell your ideas to your travel consultant in advance and they will arrange the experienced guide and driver to guide you for sightseeing.
For questions about booking, boarding and disembarkation, please feel free to contact our professional travel consultants who are here glad to help at any time!
Schedule of Yangtze Explorer
- The above price range is based on a standard cabin for twin sharing.
- The prices are valid by Dec.31 of the year.
- Please enquire us of the exact price according to your nationality, cruising time and cruising route.
- The cruise prices for holidays such as National Holiday (the first week of October), Labor Day, Spring Festival, etc., are quoted upon request.
- Limited winter schedules may be adjusted into other dates, cruise ships, etc. based on the arrangement of the cruise company.