Harvest season, Mekong River

4 incredible September holidays to book now

Our exclusive September holidays will take you all over the world – from meeting pandas in China to following the fabled Silk Road through central Asia

1. Compare two sides of Japan

Japan provides a contrast like no other; strict tradition meets faith in the future. For the traveller it is often a bewildering mix, but always fascinating. This small group tour welcomes solo travellers and combines time in modern Tokyo and Osaka while exploring the feudal culture that existed in Japan until the late 19th century.

Starting in Osaka and ending in Tokyo, this 15-day tour delves deeper into the common perception of Japan, examining its harmonious relationship with nature, faith and tradition.

The details: 15 days, from £3,295pp (incl flights). See the full itinerary and book.  

2. Meet giant pandas in China

Icons of the global conservation movement and rather endearing ones at that, China’s giant pandas are just one element of this exclusive escorted tour. Times readers will come face to face with the endangered species and their expert handlers at the Research Base of Giant Panda Breeding in Chengdu, where the struggle to preserve these vulnerable creatures becomes palpably real.

Our exclusive nine-day tour is just an introduction to monumental nature of China. Explore Imperial Beijing and the Great Wall, plus the city walls and Terracotta Warriors of Xi’an. Every day will incite awe.

The details: 9 days, from £2,890pp, (incl flights). See the full itinerary and book.

Giant panda eating bamboo in Chengdu panda base ( Sichuan ; China )Getty Images

3. Follow the Silk Road

‘Silk Road’ – possibly the most evocative words in travel? There’s no overland adventure more alluring than tracing this ancient trading route across the mountain, desert and steppe of Central Asia, via some of the world’s most myth-laden cities – Kashgar, Tashkent, Bukhara, Isfahan.

Our epic 35-day Great Silk Road trip stretches from Beijing to Tehran: following parts of the Great Wall of China, meeting the Terracotta Warriors, exploring the mighty metropolis of Samarkand, discovering the lost city of Merv and roaming the ruins of Persepolis, as well as unearthing singing dunes, remote oases, abandoned caravanserais and centuries of stories en route.

The details: 35 days, from £9,645pp. See the full itinerary and book.

4. Sail the majestic Mekong

Travel through the centuries, through war and peace, and witness first hand the beauty and hardship Vietnam and Cambodia have experienced. Starting with the unforgettable lost temples of Angkor Wat, our 15-day cruise-and-stay holiday provides a link between the ancient and the modern in South-East Asia, from the serene beauty of its Buddhist culture to the twin terrors of the Khmer Rouge and the Vietnam War.

Following a three-night stay in Siem Reap exploring the temples of Angkor Wat, guests on our thought-provoking tour will visit the temples along the banks of the Mekong. The majesty of the French Colonial era brings us closer to our own times and the terrible conflicts of the 20th century.

The details: 15 days, from £3,295pp (incl flights). See the full itinerary and book.

Wooden boats in the sea at sunset, Phuket,Thailand.
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