European tourists enjoy tours in Beijing under new visa-free policy

(Xinhua) 14:51, March 27, 2024

BEIJING, March 27 (Xinhua) -- A group of 350 European tourists visited Beijing after arriving in Shanghai on a German cruise.

Maximilian, a 21-year-old from Germany who is part of the tour group, described this trip as "fantastic" and expressed eagerness to explore more Chinese cities in the future.

"It feels like I was in a dream," he said, adding that when he was a child, he had hoped to see the Great Wall of China in person one day. "I finally came to the Great Wall, where every brick carries history, and I will remember this journey in the future."

"It's nice to see very interesting buildings and temples here. Everything was great," said Jutta, another tourist from Germany.

"We meticulously prepared a range of half-day, full-day, and evening tour packages imbued with Chinese cultural essence," said Hu Jiying, deputy general manager of CYTS International Travel Co., Ltd., which is responsible for the reception of these tourists.

The cruise carrying over 1,000 German-speaking tourists arrived in Shanghai last Tuesday. On Tuesday night, some tourists arrived in Beijing by high-speed train and returned to Shanghai after their tours in Beijing the next day.

China has adopted a visa-free policy for Switzerland, Ireland, Hungary, Austria, Belgium and Luxembourg on a trial basis, starting March 14.

The implementation of China's new visa-free policy has greatly streamlined travel planning for passengers aboard this cruise, according to Hu.

Talina from Switzerland, who is visiting China for the first time, said that the journey from Shanghai to Beijing was "incredibly quick," lasting just over four hours. She was particularly impressed by China's high-speed rail system and its clean train environment and exceptional service.

Thanks to China's visa-free policy, the number of foreign tourists visiting China has increased significantly. According to the Ministry of Culture and Tourism, the Chinese mainland saw 3.23 million inbound tourist arrivals during the eight-day Spring Festival holiday this year.

Beijing has enriched its tourism packages, expanded global communication channels, and introduced measures to improve the experience of foreign visitors in various aspects, according to the city's cultural and tourism department.

"To provide convenient services for foreign tourists, Tiantan (Temple of Heaven) Park operates an English-language online ticket purchasing platform as well as offers manual ticket consulting services in English," said Ren Chao, who works with the management department of the park.

The park accepts foreign bank cards and all essential information displayed in the park is presented in a bilingual format, Ren added.

"China has a long history and is very modern at the same time. I want to tell my family and friends about the wonderful time I had here," Maximilian said.

(Web editor: Tian Yi, Liang Jun)


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