High School Trips to China

Explore China With No Barriers Youth Programming

You’ve never seen educational tours in China quite like these. No Barriers offers you and your students an unforgettable journey to discover the ancient world while unearthing today’s modern China. Not only will you experience the rich historical sites, but you’ll meet with unforgettable people as you examine the environmental, cultural, and social issues facing the world’s largest population.

Sip the strongest green tea of its kind from a traditional porcelein mug. Take in the sweeping views of the Great Wall as it meanders along the dragons’ back (don’t worry, they’re actually just the gorgeous Jundu mountains). Giggle at pandas as they munch on bamboo. Your school trip to China is incomplete without sampling some deep fried scorpions (we mean, um, dumplings!). Students traveling to China with No Barriers can:

  • Go trekking to remote areas of the Great Wall
  • Be immersed in Mongolian culture and learn how yurts are built
  • Visit both mega-cities and rural communities
  • Participate in ecological restoration projects designed to reduce erosion and desertification
  • Improve your Mandarin leaps and bounds!

What to Know Before a China Educational Tour

China is home to 37 UNESCO World Heritage sites, not to mention countless temples, palaces, and tombs. Its ultra-modern cities are not far from quaint and picturesque rural villages. Places such as the Great Wall, the Forbidden City, Tiananmen Square, the Terracotta warriors of Xi’an and the Ming tombs, all conjure up images of a land filled with a rich, ancient culture. Yet today, industrialization, rapid urbanization, acid rain, and air and water pollution all threaten many of China’s historic monuments and have created a host of related social and environmental problems. Straddling both ancient and modern, China is a fascinating high school student travel destination that cannot be ignored!

Pique your students’ interest in important global issues while tapping into their inner-explorer. Bargain for silk in the market, master your chopsticks skills, and grow—together. Become leaders equipped for the future!


Choose Your Adventure for School Trips to China

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Beijing: From the Great Wall to the Forbidden City

Day 1: Nihao, China!
  • Evening: Arrive in Beijing, China. Meet your No Barriers Youth Expedition Leaders upon arrival and transfer to hotel to settle in have orientation.
  • Accommodation: Beijing
Day 2: The Ancient City
  • Morning: Tour the National Museum of China and explore the city center. 
  • Afternoon: Visit Yonghe Temple to admire the traditional Tibetan artwork and architecture. 
  • Evening: After watching the monks at practice in the temple, enjoy a hot pot dinner with your group. 
  • Accommodation: Beijing
Days 3: Temple of Heaven and The Forbidden City
  • Morning: Take an early train to the Forbidden City and explore the Temple of Heaven and public park.
  • Afternoon: Visit Tiananmen Square while learning some of China’s history and climb to the top of the park for a beautiful view of the Forbidden City.  
  • Evening: Enjoy some tasty Chinese cuisine and reflect on what you’ve learned so far. 
  • Accommodation: Beijing
Days 4: Chinese Art: Ancient and Modern
  • Morning: Spend the morning at the Capitol Museum learning about traditional Chinese art from calligraphy to depictions of Buddha. 
  • Afternoon:Head to the 798 Art District to juxtapose this youthful contemporary art scene with the ancient arts you saw in the morning. 
  • Evening: Try some more authentic Chinese dishes and rest up!
  • Accommodation: Beijing
Day 5: Olympic Stadium
  • Morning: Travel out to the stadium that hosted the 2008 Beijing Olympic Games to see the marvelous modern architecture of the Bird’s Nest and the Cube.  
  • Afternoon: Watch some performers near the stadium flip, juggle, and dance as the stadiums light up at night in the background.  
  • Evening: Join in on a mid-trip discussion about everything you’ve seen thus far.  
  • Accommodation: Beijing
Day 6: Beijing New Oriental Cooking School and the Silk Market
  • Morning: Spend the morning at the Beijing New Oriental Cooking School, which trains students for jobs in hospitality and try your hand at making dumplings during a cooking class. 
  • Afternoon: Have a traditional meal of the famous Peking Duck. 
  • Evening: Practice your bargaining skills while navigating a famous shopping center on the hunt for souvenirs. 
  • Accommodation: Beijing
Day 7: The Summer Palace
  • Morning: Travel to the Summer Palace, the vacation retreat of many of China’s emperors. 
  • Afternoon:See the Stone Boat and hike up to the Temple for a scenic view of this UNESCO site. 
  • Evening: Return to your accommodations and enjoy dinner. 
  • Accommodation: Beijing
Day 8: Explore the Great Wall of China
  • Morning: Drive out to a remote and picturesque section of the Great Wall of China.
  • Afternoon: Hike along a section of the wall to appreciate this monumental human achievement. 
  • Evening: Enjoy a final Chinese dinner and participate in a closing discussion and activity. 
  • Accommodation: Guesthouse, Great Wall of China
Day 9: Zaijian, China!
  • Morning: Pack up and say goodbye to your Expedition Leaders before heading to Beijing International Airport

Himalayan Foothills Village Immersion China

Day 1: Ni hao, China! 
  • Arrive into Lijiang Sanyi Airport (JLG) and meet your No Barriers Expedition Leaders.   
  • Evening: Arrive and settle in at your guesthouse and receive a program orientation.   
  • Accommodation: Guesthouse in Shuhe 
Day 2: Traditional Shaxi Life  
  • Morning: Drive out to Shaxi, a historic market town in Yunnan Province.  
  • Afternoon: Partake in traditional heritage handicrafts workshops learning paper-cutting, making sliced pea chips, and preparing Shaxi rice candy.   
  • Evening: Savor traditional Yunnan cuisine and acclimate to the local culture.  
  • Accommodation: Hostel / Homestay in Shaxi 
Days 3: Shibao National Park 
  • Morning: Drive to Shibao Mountain National Park to visit the Baoxiang and Stone Bell Temples. 
  • Afternoon: After enjoying a picnic in the park, hike back to Shaxi cleaning up the path on the way.  
  • Evening: Have dinner and relax after a physical day.  
  • Accommodation: Hostel / Homestay in Shaxi 
Days 4: Farming and Shaxi Market Day 
  • Morning: Visit a local farm and help farmers pick crops found only in this region.  
  • Afternoon: Experience the famed markets of Shaxi where you can find goods of all kinds.  
  • Evening: Debrief your market day over dinner.  
  • Accommodation: Guesthouse in Shaxi 
Day 5: Tiger Leaping Gorge 
  • Morning: Depart for Tiger Leaping Gorge, one of the deepest natural gorges in the world. 
  • Afternoon: Hike an ancient Naxi trail down to the Jinsha River to experience the full majesty of the gorge.  
  • Evening: Enjoy a scenic ride back to your guesthouse.  
  • Accommodation: Guesthouse at Tiger Leaping Gorge 
Day 6: Visit Historic Shuhe 
  • Morning: Partake in a morning hike in Tiger Leaping Gorge 
  • Afternoon: Explore the UNESCO town of Lijiang known as a stop on the ancient tea route and shop for souvenirs. 
  • Evening: Reflect on your experience in China and participate in a closing activity.  
  • Accommodation: Guesthouse in Shuhe 
Day 7: Zaijian, China! 
  • Morning: Pack up and say goodbye to your Expedition Leaders before heading to the airport for your homeward flight.   
Optional: Two Day Extension to Beijing 

Add on a two-day trip to Beijing to see the Forbidden City, the Great Wall of China, and Tiananmen Square!  

Giant Panda Conservation in Sichuan

Day 1: Ni hao, China! 
  • Arrive into Chengdu Shuanglia International Airport (CTU) and meet your No Barriers Youth Expedition Leaders. Transfer to your hotel. 
  • Evening: Settle in and relax at the hotel; receive a program orientation.  
  • Accommodation: Dujiangyan 
Day 2-5: Panda Conservation and Adventure 
  • Morning: Partner with Panda researchers to assist in the care of the Panda enclosures, preparing food, and supporting research studies through behavioral observations. Learn about conservation issues and threats to Pandas’ habitat through your work.   
  • Afternoon: Explore the city, tour the local temple and visit surrounding towns.   
  • Evening: Enjoy traditional cuisine and debrief your service activities. 
  • Accommodation: Dujiangyan 
Day 6: Explore Chengdu 
  • Morning: Return to the city of Chengdu and visit the People’s Park for traditional and modern dancing. 
  • Afternoon: Take a trip to the Opera for an unforgettable show that includes acrobatics, comedy, dance, and song.  
  • Evening: Close out your program with a reflection activity and final group dinner.  
  • Accommodation: Chengdu 
Day 7: Zai Jian, China! 
  • Morning: Pack up and say goodbye to your Expedition Leaders before heading to the airport for your trip home.  
Optional: Two Day Extension to Beijing 
Day 1: To Beijing! 
  • Morning: Take an early morning flight to Beijing. Transfer to the city center and check-in to your accommodation for the evening. 
  • Afternoon: After a traditional Beijing lunch, take the metro to Tiananmen Square, the biggest square in China. Walk from the top of Tiananmen Square to the entrance of the Forbidden City, which was home to the royal families of the Ming and Qing Dynasties. 
  • Evening: Spend the evening exploring a local ‘Hutong’ 
  • Accommodation: Hotel, Chengdu 
Day 2: The Great Wall of China 
  • Morning: After a quick breakfast, it’s time for one of the trip’s highlights: a visit to the Great Wall of China. Depending on the time of year and flight time, visit one of two sections of the Great Wall—Gubeikou or Mutianyu.  
  • Afternoon: Lunch at the Great Wall and transport to Airport 
  • Evening: Flight home 

Getting immersed in the culture of India and getting to know and love the children was the greatest. When the students would cling to me at the end of class, and tell me how much they enjoyed having me there was heartbreaking.

Rachel W., Student

There is so much life, happening all the time. It's crazy to think that, after only three weeks, I feel like I've become accustomed to so much of how the world move.

Saul S., Student

I just wanted to take a moment to formally thank you for another unbelievable and life changing trip. No Barriers Youth made it all possible and took the guesswork out of a potentially nerve wracking and complicated task.

Amanda W., Trip Leader