I recommend a classic China itinerary:
Beijing -3 days, for imperial Chinese history
Xi’an – 1 days, for ancient Chinese history
Yunnan Province – 7 days, for colorful ethnic cultures and stunning scenery
Shanghai – 2 days, to experience the head-spinning modern China
Skip Hong Kong if you have limited time. You can always swing by on your next business trip.
Don’t do the Yangtze River Cruise unless it’s absolutely your thing. Too much time spent on board with hundreds of other western tourists, eating hotel food. Why come to China to do that?
Come back to my post to read about what to do if you have 3 days in Beijing and more