Our courses
Beginners' Tai Chi Courses Energy Makeup Analysis
Continuing Tai Chi Students Tai Chi Workshop Sat 2 June
Wu Dao Gong Martial Arts China Trip 27 Dec 2018 to 8 Jan 2019
Push Hands Tai Chi & Meditation Retreat, April
Yang Mian Explosive Power Training  

To ensure that you’re viewing the latest version, please click REFRESH.

China Trip  : Thurs 27 Dec 2018 to Tues 8 Jan 2019 (13 days) 

Discover the Beauty and Soul of China
Guilin, Yang Shou & Guangzhou

with Chief Instructor Brett Wagland & Fontane Ip,

Tai Chi Academy (since 1982)

Printer Friendly Leaflet


Experience inner peace and harmony in the spectacular scenery of China


River Li, Guilin


Enjoy a holiday with a difference!  Instead of just sightseeing, you can also learn to relax the body, calm the mind and gain insight into the deeper aspects of traditional Chinese culture and its ancient healing and wellness arts.  For 5 days of the holiday, we will devote more time to practising qigong, Tai Chi and meditation in the surrounds of beautiful scenery, great food and tranquillity. 


China is a land of immense natural beauty.  The ancient Taoist culture which promotes harmony and balance between humans and nature is one that still permeates the Chinese culture to this very day.  The arts of Tai Chi and qigong are some of its most famous legacies.  Feng shui (literally means wind water) is the balancing of energies of a building with the environment for health and well being.  It is evident in much of its ancient and modern architecture.  Traditional Chinese medicine is also heavily influenced by Taoist principles and practices for regulating the mind and body.  The famous Chinese cuisine is another example of preparing healthy, tasty food by applying the philosophy of yin yang and the five elements.



The weather at this time of the year in Southern China is around 15 to 20 degrees Celsius while back in Australia, it is in the high 30s.  Just imagine staying in a beautiful hotel based on feng shui principles and enjoying Chinese delicacies all set in a botanical wonderland in the picturesque city of Guilin.  We begin the mornings with qigong.  After a delicious breakfast, we practise Tai Chi in the stunning gardens surrounding the hotel while listening to the sweet sounds of the warbling birds.  The energy in the garden is powerful and nourishing, making this a great way to start your day.  Practising qigong and Tai Chi will relax and regenerate your mind, body and spirit.


We will lunch at the great restaurants in and around Guilin.  After lunch about 2pm, we will travel to some of the famous beautiful picturesque areas surrounding the city. Guilin (Osthmanthus Forest) is one of China’s most scenic natural settings and a world major tourist attraction.  The city was built during the Qin Dynasty over 2,000 years ago.  It is filled with evergreen osthmanthus trees and is located on the west bank of the River Li.  This famous river is surrounded by striking jagged limestone hills known as karst formations.


Reed Flute Cave, Guilin


Visiting the beautiful Reed Flute Cave is a must.  Due to its carbonate disposition, this enormous cave which has been eroded by water is filled with stunning rock formations, stone pillars and stalactites hanging from the ceiling.  Illuminated with coloured lighting, the cave becomes a wondrous subterranean fairyland.  We will visit other scenic attractions including Elephant Trunk Hill.  You will understand the reason for its name as soon as you see this interesting natural elevation.  Fo Bo Hill (Wave Subduing Hill) is partially submerged in water and resembles a wave reaching into the sky.  At the foot of the hill lies the Thousand Buddha Cave filled with mural paintings and statues carved out of stone.   


In the evenings we will enjoy the special local dishes.  The food component is always high on our list when visiting China so you can expect to savour some of the best food available.  Many previous participants have said that our tours should be called the foodies’ trip to China.


We will return to our hotel for meditation which will allow us to enjoy a relaxing night’s sleep.  Fontane will introduce you to the practice of meditation and its many benefits.  Fontane is known for her penetrating insight and a powerful teaching style, helping you to get in touch with your true nature.  So whether you are a seasoned meditator or an absolute beginner, you will learn something special from these sessions.


We will celebrate New Year’s Eve by enjoying the famous dreamlike Li River Theatre show.  The dancers, dressed in colourful costumes of minority ethnic groups, will entertain us with a delightful production which is a combination of ballet and acrobatics.

Yang Shuo


The contrast of the cone-shaped peaks and rice paddies in Yang Shuo provides an interesting backdrop for photographs.  The streets are kept in the original style of an ancient town.  There is also excellent shopping for bargain hunters.  We will float down the gorgeous Li River and enjoy the views of the natural beauty such as the huge limestone mountain’s luxuriant forests and fishing villages. 

Seven Star Park, Guilin


Before we return home, we will spend 3 days exploring the sights and tastes of Guangzhou.  We will visit famous sights such as the beautiful Yue Xiu Park with its 7 hills, 3 man-made lakes and the impressive Stone Sculpture of 5 Rams.  We will also explore the Chen Family temple which is now a folk arts museum and the Sun Yat Sen Memorial Hall with an octagonal, ancient palace style main building. 

Giant Kwan Yin statue, Mount Xi Qiao


Mount Xi Qiao with spectacular waterfalls, transparent lakes, unusual caves, steep cliffs and a giant Kwan Yin Goddess of Mercy statue is also on our itinerary.  This mountain is an ancient extinct volcano, estimated to be 40 to 50 million years old. 


Memorial Hall of Wong Fei Hung, Foshan


One cannot be in Foshan without visiting the Memorial Hall of the legendary martial artist, traditional Chinese medical practitioner and folk hero, Wong Fei Hung,  He has been immortalised by the many movies about his life.  Another Foshan attraction is the Wing Chun martial artist Ip Man (Bruce Lee’s teacher) Memorial Hall with exquisite wood carvings.


Foshan is known for pottery and has a long history of porcelain production.  We will visit the Ancient Nanfeng (South Wind) Kiln Museum.  This kiln which is still in operation looks like a dragon winding its way along the hill slope.  It is the oldest kiln in China, built in the period of 1506 to 1521 during the Ming Dynasty and is considered as a living cultural relic.  Surrounding this kiln are interesting shops with ceramic artists at work. 


This will be an unforgettable journey to a stunningly beautiful part of China.  It also offers the benefit of reinvigorating your own health and reconnecting with your inner peace through the practice of these amazing traditional arts.  Hope you can join us for a wonderful holiday of relaxation and enjoyment!



We welcome students’ families and friends on this unforgettable experience.  On previous trips, there were family members of our students and interested individuals, who are not Tai Chi practitioners, who joined us on our journey.  They all thoroughly enjoyed the tour.  They had the opportunity to see unique sights which are not included in most package tours.  They were welcome to join in the Tai Chi sessions but sometimes chose to do sightseeing or shopping.  In China, there is always something to see and do, right at your doorsteps.  Discover the mystery and excitement of China with us!

If you would like to read the participants’ experiences of the previous trips, visit these links:

Reed Flute Cave, Guilin


Day 1 - Thurs 27 Dec 2018       D
Fly Sydney (China
Southern CZ326) 11.25am to Guangzhou 5.35pm (local time)


Day 2 - Fri 28 Dec
Breakfast, lunch and dinner included (B L D)
Fly Guangzhou (China Southern CZ3243) 9.55am to Guilin 11.10am.

Sightseeing: Reed Flute Cave, Elephant Trunk Hill, Fo Bo Hill, Thousand Buddha Cave.
Relax with a foot massage.


Elephant Trunk Hill, Guilin

Day 3 - Sat 29 Dec   B L D
Morning Qigong & Tai Chi practice up to lunchtime.
Sightseeing from c2pm : Reed Flute Cave with stunning rock formations, stone pillars and stalactites hanging from the ceiling.
Meditation & talk after dinner.


Day 4 - Sun 30 Dec     B L D
Morning Qigong & Tai Chi practice up to lunchtime.
Sightseeing from c2pm : the historical Jingjiang Princes’ Palace (commonly known as Princes’ City), older than the Forbidden City in Beijing, built from 1372 to 1379 during the Ming Dynasty around the Solitary Beauty Peak — 19.78 hectares including 4 halls, 4 pavilions & 40 other structures. It was home to 14 Ming princes and later became the base of Sun Yat Sen, the first leader of a Republican China.
Meditation & talk after dinner.


Day 5 - Mon 31 Dec     B L D
Morning Qigong & Tai Chi practice up to lunchtime.
Sightseeing from c2pm : Seven Star Park covers an area of c134 hectares
— a unique combination of hills and historic artefacts.
Enjoy the Li River Theatre show in the evening.


Day 6 - Tues 1 Jan 2019     B L D
Morning Qigong & Tai Chi practice up to lunchtime.
Sightseeing from c2pm : tour of Guilin city on a cruise.
Meditation & talk after dinner.


River Li, Guilin


Day 7 - Wed 2 Jan     B L D
Morning Qigong & Tai Chi practice up to lunchtime.
Sightseeing from c2pm : enjoy a Tea Ceremony (gong fu cha).
Meditation & talk after dinner.


Day 8 - Thurs 3 Jan     B & L
Enjoy the scenery of the Li River on a cruise. Visit Yang Shuo Town. Free time.
Optional extra : watch the Water Theatre performance (the largest natural theatre in the world with the Li River being the stage) - if the weather allows.


Day 9 - Fri 4 Jan      B L D
Morning outdoor Tai Chi practice. Free time.
Fly Guilin (China Southern - CZ3244) 6.50pm to Guangzhou 8pm.


Day 10 - Sat 5 Jan  B L D
Morning outdoor Tai Chi practice. Sightseeing : Yue Xiu Park with 7 hills, 3 man-made lakes & the Stone Sculpture of 5 Rams (one of the city’s emblems), the Chen Family Temple (folk arts museum) and Sun Yat Sen Memorial Hall. Guangzhou to Foshan by coach.

Day 11 - Sun 6 Jan     B L D
Morning outdoor Tai Chi practice. Sightseeing : Xi Qiao Shan (spectacular waterfalls, transparent lakes, unusual caves, steep cliffs and a giant Kwan Yin Goddess of Mercy statue) and Foshan.


Day 12 - Mon 7 Jan     B & L
Morning outdoor Tai Chi practice. Visit the memorial halls of kung fu masters, Wang Fei Hung and Ip Man and the Ancient Nanfeng Kiln Museum.
Foshan to Guangzhou by coach.
Stroll down the Beijing Road for last minute shopping.
Fly Guangzhou (China Southern - CZ325) 9pm to Sydney.

Day 13 - Tues 8 Jan
Arrive in Sydney 9.25am.


Included in the cost: economy international airfare from Sydney return, accommodation, meals as specified in the itinerary, admission (sightseeing places, parks and show), Qigong, Tai Chi and meditation sessions, coach, English speaking guide, economy China domestic airfares and airport taxes in China . 


  • Guangzhou – Hotel Canton or similar (4-star)

  • Guilin – Royal Palace Hotel or similar (4-star)

  • Yang Shuo New West Street Hotel  (4-star)

  • Foshan – Xi Qiao Mountain Hotel or similar (3.5-star)

Travel to Southern China during the Christmas and New Year period is Peak Season.

Cost of the China Trip will be:
        – AUD$5,280 per person based on twin share
        – AUD$5,910 per person based on single room

        The cost estimate is based on 12 people.  A minimum of 12 people is required in order for the tour to proceed.  Less than 12 people will incur a higher cost.


Please pay a deposit of $2,000- by Monday 3 September
the balance by Tuesday 2 October 2018.

Please note that the entire course is non-refundable.

Appropriate travel insurance is strongly recommended.


>> Please contact Fontane when you are ready
to pay the deposit. <<

Payment can be made by:

  • cash,

  • personal cheque payable to Southlands Travel & Cruise - please pay your instructor or mail cheque to Tai Chi Academy, PO Box 70, Woden ACT 2606.

  • If you wish to pay by credit card, there will be a credit card fee:
    1.5% extra for MasterCard or visa
    3.5% extra for Amex or Diners

Note: The organiser reserves the right to change the travel dates or/and the itinerary if deemed necessary.


Excluded from the Cost – please allow for the following expenses:

  • Taxes for the international airfare: approx. $175 – Australia Departure Tax, Airport Taxes, Security Taxes, fuel surcharge and China Departure Tax.  All the taxes are subject to exchange rate and introduction of new taxes.

Reed Flute Cave

  • Tipping for the national and local tour guides: AUD $140- per person.

  • Canberra to Sydney airline tickets return  Please feel free to use your frequent flyer points to book your own tickets or arrange other means of transport.  However, the travel agent advises that we should wait for the international tickets to be issued first before booking the domestic tickets.
           Please allow at least 3 hours before the flight departure time for baggage check in at the Sydney International Airport.    
            If you need Southlands Travel & Cruise to book your domestic airline tickets, please contact Fontane on 6296 1357 or

  • Visa application fee for single entry, $109.50 (subject to change), your passport and one passport size photo. Chinese Visa Application Centre, Suite 201, Level 2, Canberra House, 40 Marcus Clarke St, Canberra City – Monday to Friday 9am to 3pm. Phone 6279 7800.
    http://au.china-embassy.org/eng/ls/bg – click on Visa Application Form

  • Appropriate travel insurance is strongly recommended.

  • Travel vaccinations – seek advice from your doctor 

  • Please be aware that many countries such as China require travellers to have at least 6 months remaining validity and at least 2 blank visa pages on their passports – phone Australian Passport Information Service on 131 232 or visit www.passports.gov.au

River Li, Guilin


Printer Friendly Leaflet