Tour operator Trafalgar has contracted Victoria Cruises as its exclusive partner for Yangtze River cruises. The company is enhancing its "Classic China" itinerary with a river cruise up the Yangtze River on the Victoria Selina along with three nights in Chengdu to observe China's national symbol, the giant panda. Trafalgar will offer seven departures for the expanded 17-day program through October 13, 2017 with 15 additional departures planned for 2018.
Along with the Yangtze River, passengers will also take in views of the Three Gorges from the vantage point of their own private balcony. Excursions may include a guided tour of the Three Gorges Dam, a visit to Shibaozhai and a scenic voyage along one of the Yangtze's tributaries via traditional Chinese sampan.
Trafalgar's "Classic China with Yangtze Cruise and Chengdu" program utilizes the Victoria Selina, a 218-passenger vessel which received a complete interior redesign during its last renovation in 2011. The onboard experience offers guests informative lectures, nightly entertainment and a dining program designed by Emmy Award-winning celebrity chef Walter Staib. Additionally, guests will also see the introduction of the world's largest ship elevator in Victoria Cruises' 2017 programs.
In addition to sailing the Yangtze River with Victoria Cruises, travelers will experience Beijing and the Tang Dynasty capital of Xi'an, along with the modernity of Shanghai and the Sichuan culinary style of Chengdu. Vacationers will spend a full morning at the Chengdu Research Base of Giant Panda Breeding, a non-profit facility for giant pandas and other rare animals.