Specials Trip Finder Brochures Menu

Yangtze River Cruises & Vacation Packages

  • Caiyuanba Yangtze River bridge in Chongqing is a photo opportunity while on Yangtze River cruises
  • Fisherman on the Yangtze River
  • Spectacular night views of Chongqing and the Yangtze River can be seen when booking one of our China tours.
  • The Jiujiang Yangtze River bridge
  • Fertile agricultural land alongside the Yangtze River

Our Yangtze River Tours

The Yangtze River is the longest river in Asia and the third-largest in the world. It flows for almost 6500 kilometres/4000 miles from the glaciers on the Tibetan Plateau in Qinghai, eastward across southwest, central, and eastern China before emptying into the East China Sea at Shanghai and is a popular destination on China tours. The largest water system in China, the Yangtze River plays a significant role economically, historically, and culturally, as it’s been an important transportation route with major cities along its banks for several thousand years. Adding to its function, bridges started being constructed in the mid-20th century, transporting passengers across the river. More recently, the first tunnel, Wuhan Yangtze River Crossing Tunnel was also built, as well as the Shanghai Yangtze River Tunnel and Bridge.

There are so many ways to experience China on Asia tours, it’s easy for cruising to be lost in the milieu. The Yangtze River however is one of the world’s great waterways, and as you sail between the dramatic cliffs of the Three Gorges, it’s easy to see why. On the edge of the Himalayas, there’s a wow factor to China’s natural landscape that takes many western travellers by surprise.

Yangtze River Trip Highlights

Passenger vessels that traverse the Yangtze, such as the Sanctuary Yangzi Explorer (the spelling of the river’s name varies widely according to who you ask) also offer curious Globetrotters the chance to experience local culture onboard. Local dishes and highlights of regional cuisine make every onboard meal a memorable part of the experience. If passengers really want to get into the local spirit, they can rise early for a traditional Tai Chi lesson led by a certified master, before informative talks help put each day’s discoveries in context.

The Yangtze River is considered to be the dividing line between northern and southern China, each side showing some of their cultural, economic, environmental, and scenic differences, all to be seen on tours to China. With many tributaries along its route, the ‘heart’ of the Yangtze River features The Three Gorges, a scenic area between Chongqing and Yichang, and home to The Three Gorges Dam - the largest dam project and hydro-electric power station in the world. On a China vacation, many cruises can be enjoyed from this area of the Yangtze River, as tourists can explore 21st Century Chinese life along the water.

The Yangtze River is a true symbol of China’s strength. 

What types of cruises are available on the Yangtze River?

It is usual to start in Chongqing for downstream cruises which take 4 days and from Yichang or Wuhan for upstream cruises which take 5 days. Various styles of the ship are available depending on price. A Yangtze River cruise is included in Goway’s escorted tours, The Splendours of China and The China Odyssey. 

When is the best time to visit the Yangtze River?

Spring and fall are the best seasons for taking a Yangtze River cruise, especially in April, May, September and October when the weather is cool and comfortable. These four months are the high seasons. The prices are the lowest for winter cruises.  

"Globetrotting with Goway" blog articles

For some additional reading, the following articles are from our blog “Globetrotting with Goway”….. a great source of information for those people who are, or who want to be, world travellers!

Explore China’s Legendary Waterway on a Yangtze River Cruise

River Cruising in Asia

See the World Differently on an Asian River Cruise

China and Tibet Travel Information

At Goway we believe that a well-informed traveller is a safer traveller. With this in mind, we have compiled an easy-to-navigate travel information section dedicated to a China vacation.

Learn about the history and culture of China, the must-try food and drink, and what to pack in your suitcase. Read about China's nature and wildlife, weather and geography, along with 'Country Quickfacts' compiled by our travel experts. Our globetrotting tips, as well as our visa and health information will help ensure you're properly prepared for a safe and enjoyable trip. The only way you could possibly learn more is by embarking on your journey and discovering China for yourself. Start exploring… book one of our China tours today!

Extend Your Trip

After your China tour considers taking the time to visit other destinations. Goway offers exciting India tours and Thailand vacation packages plus a comprehensive selection of vacation packages in many other Asian countries.


Read More

Yangtze River

  • Ancient China Gorges & Gardens: Beijing, Yangtze River, Suzhou & Shanghai

    DELUXE | PRIVATE-GUIDED: Elevate your trip to China on this private tour, taking in the historic imperial sights of Beijing, the natural splendour of the Yangtze River region, and the enchanting canals of Suzhou. It all ends in space-age Shanghai, where centuries of history await discovery in the shadow of China’s future. You'll travel by train, plane and even cruise!
    11 Days
    Prices From:
    US$ 4,270
    Trip Type:
    Bucket List Travel Ideas, Private Experiences, Romance & Honeymoon, Tailor-made Travel Ideas
    China See Trip Details
Trip Finder

What our travelers say

Goway Toolkit

Need help planning your holiday? Our toolkit is a great place to get started.