For many, a cruise down the mighty Yangtze River is the quintessential China experience. At 6,418 km (3,988 mi), the Yangtze is the third-longest river in the world.
Sailing through the steep rocky sides of the Three Gorges is arguable the most memorable part of the cruise. Although cruises range from three to nine days, most will include the Three Gorges section. You will also be taken on a tour of the Three Gorges Dam.
We began our cruise in Chongqing. Sailing downstream, we went through the first gorge, Outang Gorge, and the second and most famous Wu Gorge on the third day.
Last but not least, we cruised through the third Gorge, Xiling on the last day. Xiling Gorge used to be the most dangerous route for boats before the dam was built because the water was too shallow. But the construction of the Dam has made the waterway safe.
Our trip through the lock system of the Three Gorges Dam on the third night was an incredible experience. Witnessing the enormous steel doors open and close was hard to believe.
For striking photos that really display the grandeur of the scenery as well as the cruise experience, check out Runaway Juno’s Yangtze River Cruise post.
Our tour included a stop at the Shibaozhai Pagoda –a beautiful twelve-story wooden pagoda grafted on the cliff face. We also enjoyed a trip on a smaller boat which went up Shennong Stream. In the old days, naked men used to pull the boats up-stream from the shore. Shennong Stream is smaller and the very narrow, high cliffs are scenic as well.
For help booking your Yangtze River Cruise, visit ChinaTours.com.