12 days
Duration
Asia and the Orient
Destination
Level 2 - Introductory to Moderate
Activity

China Dinosaurs small group escorted paleontology tours

On this specialist China Dinosaurs 13-day small group tour, we visit some of the most exciting Chinese dinosaur dig sites in China. This program is limited to just 15 travellers, to ensure the best possible archaeological experience. The tour is designed for those with an interest in studying the earth’s Paleontological record in unique environments across rural China.

About the Small Group Dinosaur Dig tour

The Chinese Dinosaur Dig Small Group Tour is based around four noteworthy archaeological sites: Shenyang, Chengdu, Zigong, and Kunming. Highlights include exploring the Zigong Dinosaur Museum, one of the richest dinosaur fossil burial sites in China and one of the top three dinosaur museums in the world.

We also visit the Paleontological Museum of Liaoning and  the Beijing Museum of Natural History. The tour also includes a guided tour through the Lufeng Dinosaur Valley in the Yunnan Province. Our Palaeontologist or Biologist guide will also take us on a behind-the-scenes places and field studies. Another highlight of the tour is the chance to participate in a Dinosaur Dig or assist with Laboratory work for a day. We experience the thrill of tagging and cleaning genuine Dinosaur fossils at one of the sites or museums visited.

Our escorted educational travel program for seniors seeking a holiday or vacation also includes several World Heritage site visits. Including the Peking Man Site at Zhoukoudian, the Jinsha Museum site, the geological phenomenon of the Stone Forest near Kunming and a visit to the Panda Sanctuary.

Odyssey Travel has a Collection of Dinosaur tours

The Chinese Dinosaur dig program is part of a series of Dinosaur dig and archaeology programs offered by Odyssey Travel. These programs are especially relevant  for couples and single travellers interested in studying, learning about, and participating in the exciting world of archaeology.

Our current portfolio of Dinosaur programs includes not only the Chinese Dinosaur Dig program but programs in the Gobi desert of Mongolia, the Patagonia desert of Argentina, and Northern Spain.

For more details, click the ‘Top 5’ or ‘Itinerary’ buttons above! If you’re keen to experience this tour, please call or send an email. Or, to book, simply fill in the form on the right hand side of this page.

Tour Notes
  • Group size is limited to a maximum of 15 participants.

PDF of Tour

1
Explore Zigong Dinosaur Museum, one of the richest dinosaur fossil sites in China and one of the top 3 dinosaur museums in the world.
2
Encounter several World Heritage sites including the Peking Man Site at Zhoukoudian in Beijing and Dujiangyan Irrigation System.
3
See the Giant Panda Research Base and appreciate the famous Changing Face performance.
4
Visit the Dinosaur Valley in Lufeng with the largest concentration of dinosaur fossils and best conservation tour in the world.
5
Visit the Liaoning Museum of Paleontology, which houses extensive dinosaur specimens including the Anchiornis Huxleyi fossils.

Overview: When we arrive in Beijing in the morning, we will come individually to the hotel. After checking in and resting, we will travel to Peking Man Site at Zhoukoudian, the 1921 discovery site of Peking Man (Sinanthropus Pekinensis). The site is not only an exceptional reminder of the prehistorical human societies of the Asian continent, but also illustrates the process of evolution. Tonight we will be treated to a Welcome Peking Duck Banquet at a local restaurant.

(L,D)

Accommodation: 1 night at Presidential Hotel Beijing or similar.

Overview: After breakfast, we will take the morning bullet train to Shenyang in Liaoning Province. This afternoon we will visit the Imperial Palace, where the Manchu emperors stayed before moving to Beijing. The Shenyang Imperial Palace is a popular destination as it is one of the 2 most well-preserved imperial group-buildings in China. The Palace was built in 1625 when the Manchus declared Shenyang to be their capital. Famous for its strong characteristics of the Man nationality and its abundant cultural relics, the Shenyang Palace Museum now functions as a museum and exhibits a huge collection of ivory and jade art crafts, musical instruments, furniture, and Ming and Qing paintings.

(B)

Accommodation: 1 night at Holiday Inn Hotel or similar.

Overview: Today we will enjoy a full day visit to Liaoning Museum of Paleontology, which is the largest museum in China. Liaoning Museum showcases over 10,000 collections of paleontological fossils and remains in 16 exhibition areas. The museum houses extensive dinosaur specimens including the Anchiornis Huxleyi fossils which date back to the late Jurassic period (Oxfordian age), 161.0–160.5 million years ago. We will learn about recent dinosaur discoveries that have reshaped our knowledge of dinosaurs, such as the 1996 discovery of fuzzy Sinosauropteryx. The magnificent “Liaoning Giant Dinosaur Hall” displays 8 giant dinosaurs from Liaoning, including the latest scientific achievement of the museum, Liaoningotitan. Liaoningotitan is 15 metres long and is on display to the public for the first time. After the visit, we will take a bullet train to Beijing.

(B)

Accommodation: 2 nights at Presidential Hotel Beijing or similar.

Overview: After breakfast we will enjoy a guided tour of Beijing Museum of Natural History.
The museum has a large collection of dinosaur fossils and mounted skeletons, including mounted cast skeletons of Gasosaurus, Mamenchiaurus, Psittacosaurus, and Tsintaosaurus. The “Dinosaur World” of the museum is divided into 2 parts, “Jurassic Park” and “Cretaceous Park.” The “Jurassic Park” recreates the dinosaurs and ecology of 140 million years ago, such as Mamenxi dinosaur, Tuojiang dinosaur, Lufeng dinosaur, flesh-eater Yongchuan dinosaur, and Qi dinosaur, to name a few.

(B)

Accommodation: Presidential Hotel Beijing or similar.

Overview: This morning we will board our flight to Chengdu. In the afternoon we will travel to the historic Dujiangyan Irrigation System, an irrigation infrastructure built in 256 BC during the Warring States Period of China by the Kingdom of Qin. Located on the Min River, it is still in use today and irrigates over 5,300 square kilometres of land in the region.

(B,D)

Accommodation: 1 night at Tianfu Sunshine Hotel or similar.

Overview: After breakfast, we will travel to the Panda Reserve where research and breeding tours for these iconic animals are supported by the state. Then we will travel to the Sanxingdui Museum, which sits on an archaeological site now recognized as one of the most important in the world. With our informative tour leader, we will explore the many Bronze Age relics that were unearthed in the 1980s, when more than 1,000 bronze, gold and jade artifacts were discovered. These archaeological discoveries changed the world’s understanding of ancient history and culture, as there was little to no previous knowledge of China’s Bronze Age. After the visit we will travel to Zigong.

(B,L,D)

Accommodation: 2 nights at Zigong Huidong Hotel or similar.

Overview: Today, we will enjoy a full day visit to the Zigong Dinosaur Museum, a large-scale local museum with one of the richest dinosaur fossil burial sites in China. Together with the American National Dinosaur Park and the Canadian Dinosaur Park, the Dinosaur Museum is known as one of top three dinosaur museums the world. It has also been named as one of “the forty best and most famous Chinese scenic tour sites” by the Chinese.

(B,L,D)

Accommodation: Zigong Huidong Hotel or similar.

Overview: This morning, we will visit Jinsha Site Museum in Chengdu, a world-class museum which focuses on the ancient Shu culture. The site shares similarities in burial objects with the Sanxingdui site. Ivory, jade artifacts, bronze objects, gold objects, and carved stone objects were found at the site. Today’s dinner will be at our own arrangements at the Bookworm Chengdu. In the evening, we will enjoy an authentic Sichuan Cabaret which includes traditional folk art performances, including the fascinating “Face Changing” show.

(B,L)

Accommodation: 1 night at Tianfu Sunshine Hotel or similar.

Overview: We will board our morning flight from Chengdu to Kunming. On arrival we will travel to Chengjiang Pre-Cambrian Fossil Museum. Next, we will visit the Maotianshan Shales, which take their name from Maotianshan Hill in Chengjiang County. Chengjiang was first recognized for its exquisite states of preservation with the 1984 discovery of the Naraoiid Misszhouia, a soft-bodied relative of trilobites. The Chengjiang biota already has all the animal groups found in the Burgess Shale; however, since it is 10 million years older, it more strongly supports the deduction that metazoans diversified earlier or faster in the early Cambrian than does the Burgess Shale fauna alone. After dinner we will transfer to our hotel in Kunming.

(B,D)

Accommodation: 3 nights at Green Lake Hotel or similar.

Overview: In the morning, we will enjoy a guided tour of Lufeng Dinosaur Quarry, the site of numerous Jurassic dinosaurs’ discoveries since 1938. The most well-known discovery at this site is Lufengosaurus, a Jurassic prosauropod. More recently, teeth and a skull of Ramapithecus, a Miocene period primate related to the orangutan, have been found in Lufeng. This museum houses the most ancient and primitive vertebrate fossils as well as the largest amount of specimens in the world. Lufeng boasts the largest concentration of dinosaur fossils as well as the best conservation tour in the world.

(B,L,D)

Accommodation: Green Lake Hotel or similar.

Overview: Today we will visit Stone Forest, a notable set of limestone formations located in Shilin Yi Autonomous County, Yunnan Province, approximately 120 kilometres from the provincial capital Kunming. The rocks seem to emanate from the ground in the manner of stalagmites, with many looking like petrified trees, thereby creating the illusion of a forest made of stone. These formations, caused by the dissolution of limestone, are believed to be over 270 million years old. Since 2007, this site has been listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site. We will board our coach back to Kunming.

(B,L,D)

Accommodation: Green Lake Hotel or similar.

Overview: Our tour will end today after breakfast.

(B)

What’s included in our Tour

  • Gratuities and necessary tips.
  • All travel in modern, air conditioned coaches.
  • English speaking local guides in each city.
  • Services of specialist tour leader for the duration of the tour.
  • All field trips and associated entry fees as per the itinerary.
  • Economy flights from Beijing to Chengdu & Chengdu to Kunming.
  • 4-5 star hotel in Beijing, Shenyang, Chengdu, and Kunming.
  • 11 breakfasts, 6 lunches, and 7 dinners.

What’s not included in our Tour

  • Additional sightseeing, entrance fees, and meals not stated in the itinerary.
  • Comprehensive travel insurance.
  • Bottled water and drinks.
  • Items of a personal nature such as telephone calls and laundry.
China Dinosaurs

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