With a recorded history of 5,000 years, China was one of the world's earliest civilizations. China is characterized by a continental climate. The latitudes span nearly 50 degrees, its southern part is in the tropical and subtropical zones, and its northern part near the frigid zones. China is forever linked to its ancient civilization, friendly people, and many of the world's most revered treasures, such as The Great Wall, Terra-Cotta Warriors & Horses and the Yangtze River. Today, one can also find spectacular architecture and towering skylines in Shanghai and Beijing (site of the 2008 Summer Olympics), a wealth of luxury accommodations - and as always - exquisite cuisine.