A fascinating experience of modern day China & it's people.
It was all very well planned, no problems with transport & being met at the airports & stations by our guides. We were very happy with the standard of hotels & Max kept us well informed in the lead up to the holiday.
We were extremely disappointed in Max's final choice of boat for our trip down the Yangtze, it was old & very shabby with a very strong musty smell + we had specified that we would prefer a smaller boat & it turned out to be a large one. We were unlucky with the weather, it rained heavily & was cold (just our bad luck) which meant we had to stay indoors in a cabin that was cold & they were unable to turn the heating up - we were told it was controlled by the captain! The food was not good & in fact, my husband came down with a bad stomach upset which he still has & mealtimes lasted only 1 hour with waitresses clearing up around you if you took a little longer to eat your meal. It was the most disappointing aspect of our trip.
No problems with any of the drivers & two guides in particular were excellent, namely Susan in Xi'an (outstanding) & Buna in Chengdu. Our final guide in Shanghai was Lilly, who Max informed us he was hoping to change - Lilly was very sweet & helpful, especially with my husband's need to constantly source toilets because of his stomach upset, however, Lilly's English really wasn't up to the job & we were often left trying to guess at what she was trying to tell us.
Unless they were very sure they wanted to include a boat trip down the Yangtze, I would suggest they seek out an alternative, or at the very least, choose a small boat. We chose individual guides & drivers because we're not happy with being herded around in very large groups but that's exactly what we got on the boat trip & we weren't alone in our unhappiness with that aspect of the trip! Guide books don't really give you an accurate account of the river as it is now, so perhaps it would be helpful if Max had given us a little more information of what we might expect on the trip.
Certainly the Terracotta Warriors & the Great Wall, followed by the Forbidden City. We were really happy with our decision to plan the trip with individual guides as we feel we learnt so much more about the country & the people.