Often, I was asked where to go in China for a first time visitor. Being born in China, I have to say that I have been to more foreign countries than Chinese cities. Without knowing the interests of the said person, it is very difficult to make suggestions. In another hand, China is so big, there are always something for someone. That been said, I do have a list for the average travellers: Forbidden City (Beijing/History and Political), Guilin City (Scenery and Cultural), Yangtze River Cruise (Engeneering and Scenery), Yellow Mountains (Huangshan/Scenery), Xi'an (History) and Lijiang (Yunnan/Scenery and Cultural). I consider above places to be a must for travellers seek a first time total China experience with a balanced view. Indicentally, most guided tours of China will take you to most of the above places.