Our People
  • Amy Waters snow biking Our Team

    Steppes Travel is made by the people who work here. Incredible holidays are made possible because of their vast travel experience and the great enthusiasm they bring to their work.

  • William Dalrymple Our Tour Experts

    We carefully select our experts based on their knowledge, companionship and influence, ensuring that you can travel with the most knowledgeable leaders in the field.

  • Liz Bonnin Heroes and Heroines

    The people who lead the way when it comes to those things which matter to us: exploration, the environment, women’s empowerment and education.

Giant Panda eating Bamboo, China

Chengdu and giant pandas

The magical region of Sichuan in southwest China is a land of many guises.

It contains many of China’s most interesting natural wonders, wildlife preserves, archaeological sites, ancient engineering achievements, museums, and historical buildings.

Buddha on Mt Emei, Sichuan
Budda Mt. Emei, Sichuan,

Chengdu

The Capital of the region is Chengdu where people firstly come to visit the giant pandas at the Giant Panda Breeding Research Base close by. Another attraction is the Buddhist temples on Mt. Emei and the Grand Buddha carved into a cliff face. Visitors also come to Chengdu to admire the traditional, style buildings, explore the narrow streets and experience a lively local life. If you like spicy food, Sichuan cuisine is famous across the land.

Running through the Sichuan Province is the mighty Yangtze River making it possible to include this region on a Yangtze River cruise.

Sichuan Tibet Northern Line Queer Mountain
Northern Line Queer Mountain, China

Northern Sichuan

Bordering with Tibet, Northern Sichuan is heavily influenced by Tibetan culture as most of the outlying villages have a large Tibetan population. The surrounding scenery is breathtaking and the national parks of this region are well known for their clean lakes, waterfalls, colourful ponds, snowy mountains and gorges. A less visited area of Sichuan but full of magical surprises.

Experiences

What do you really love doing? We curate your itinerary especially for you.

Adventure in Jiushaigou

Hike, ride and camp in the stunning landscapes of Jiushaigou Nature Reserve, home to wildlife including the giant panda and golden monkey.

Experience a Sichuan Opera

Take in a Sichuan Opera, an important part of Chengdu culture.

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Visit the Leshan Giant Buddha

Marvel at the 71 metre tall, 1,200 year old Grand Buddha, carved from a cliff face.

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See Giant Pandas

Observe Sìchuan’s famous residents at the Giant Panda Breeding Research Base.

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Dine on Sichuan Hot Pot

Spend an evening at a locally run restaurant and order a Sichuan hot pot to experience an authentic taste of the region.

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Accommodation

Below is some of the wonderful accommodation to include on your journey.

The Temple House £££££

  • China
  • City

The Temple House is home to a beautifully restored hundred-year-old Chinese courtyard building which sits boldly alongside two contemporary buildings. Within these are 100 guest rooms and 43 adjoining serviced apartments known as Residences. Elegant bamboo frames, Qing Dynasty courtyards and traditional step stones greet guests on arrival before continuing to elegant spacious rooms with a minimalist and modern vibe. The hotel is home to a dynamic collection of restaurants as well as a spa, heated swimming pool and fully equipped gym.

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Six Senses Qing Cheng Mountain £££££

  • China

Six Senses Qing Cheng Mountain Resort has been designed to blend regional architecture and landscaping, resulting in a hotel with a strong sense of place yet with a contemporary attitude. The spacious suites and villas are extremely comfortable with a modern twist on a traditional Chinese style. Each has a private balcony or courtyard and lovely views of the surrounding scenery.

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Meet our experts

A passion for travel runs right through every one of our experts - meaning they're always ready with first-hand insight about their specialist countries.

Paul Craven

Paul is the Conde Nast Traveler chosen Specialist for Central Asia and the Silk Route.

Being from a family with Army connections I can from an early age remember travelling. From camping in Europe and then later being sent to boarding school when we lived in Germany at the age of eight, complete with shorts, long socks, a cap and my suitcase. In appearance not too dissimilar to the children evacuated to the countryside during the blitz. Later, my father’s postings took us to Nepal where we had to transit Delhi and Kathmandu where we were sometimes stranded for days and Hong Kong from where I travelled in 1983 through China for two months.

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  • 01285 601 784

Clare Higginson

It was my passion for languages that first encouraged me to leave the UK behind and grab my rucksack. Since then, it’s been a mixture of intriguing cultures, jaw-dropping landscapes and the wonder of seeing animals in their natural habitat that sees me continuously extending my travel wish list. I also seek adventure; exploring the deep blue or hiking a peak often winning favour. Although it’s my time horse herding in Mongolia that I regularly want to relive.

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  • 01285 601 784

Let’s chat

Speak to our experts

Our team is waiting to help you tailor a trip that will leave you with stories for a lifetime. Call us on

01285 601 784

Send us an enquiry

Complete our enquiry form and start your next journey.

Enquire

The design and operation of this holiday was excellent and took us to places that we had hardly heard of. A great experience and opportunity to sample " Old China" before it becomes overcrowded. We were very happy with the whole procedure.

China

The Temple House is probably one of the best hotels we have ever stayed in. Quite gorgeous, central, quiet and beautifully run.

Destination: China
Hotel: The Temple House

Clare was brilliant when I was organising my holiday and understood my brief from the word go. Some of my trip was as a lone traveller and she made sure I was well looked after the whole time - every part of my itinerary worked perfectly and was very well organised. All of the guides were excellent with wonderful local knowledge and lots of ideas to keep the itinerary interesting and flexible.

Malaysia and China

Why Choose Steppes?

These may be uncertain times but they are, without a doubt, still full of opportunity to discover the extraordinary safely. Through knowledge and expertise, we can connect you to those destinations embracing travellers with the added confidence of flexible booking and decades of insight.

Are you ready to discover extraordinary once again?


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