Day 1: Kunming. Arrive in Kunming and check-in Hotel. Subject to time we visit Bamboo Temple. A Special local delicacy Mushroom Hot Pot will be served as your dinner. Overnight in Kunming.
Day 2: Stone Forest. Leave Kunming in the morning and drive to Stone Forest (Shilin in Chinese, 89 km, 1,5 hours), n 80 ha site of fantastic limestone formations created during the Permian Era when the sea covered this area, Shilin is on the World Heritage List and managed by the traditional owners the Yi people. It is famous in China and unique in the world. We will to visit the Stone Forest for 2,5 hours. Today’s lunch is Yunnan local flavour Yiliang Roast Duck. Overnight in Kunming.
Day 3: Kunming - Shangri-la. We take a morning flight to Shangri-la (Tibetan minority area, 50 min flight). Visit Songzanlin Tibetan Buddhism Monastery, designed as a smaller version of Lhasa's Potala Palace and home to 780 monks of the Yellow Hat Tibetan sect. Then visit Dongzhulin Monastery (110 km, 3 hours) first built in 1667, the 6th year of the reign of Emperor Kang Xi of the Qing Dynasty. It was where the Monlam
Festival of Prayer for the Emperor's birthday was held and is one of the most important monasteries in North West Yunnan. Drive further (8 km) and see the First Bend of Golden Sand River (the upper reach of Yangtze). It is here that the Yangtze's flow south finishes and it takes an abrupt V turn, continuing on through central China to empty near Shanghai, several thousand kilometers to the East. In the evening go to the central square in the Zhangdian Old Town to enjoy local people's dance. Overnight in Shangri-la.
Day 4: Shangri-la - Lijiang. Drive to Lijiang (Naxi minority area, 180 km, 4.5 hours). Take a cable car up to the inspiring Jade Dragon Snow Mountain, which is 5,596 meters above sea level, a truly memorable experience. Take a walk on the Dragon Spruce Meadow and breathe the crisp, fresh air. Later we will visit Museum of Naxi Culture and learn more about these fascinating people. Free time to explore. Overnight in Lijiang.
Day 5: Lijiang - Dali. Drive to Dali (Bai minority area, 153 km, 3.5 hours), which is regarded as "the oriental Switzerland" or "Chinese Geneva". Visit old Three Pagodas, which known as the Chongsheng Santa and situated on top of the ruins of Chongsheng Monastery, the Three Pagodas lie one kilometer northwest of Dali and located on the slope of Mount Cangshan. In the afternoon you could take a pleasant stroll in Dali Old Town which was the capital city of Nanzhao Kingdom 1000 years ago. Overnight in Dali.
Day 6: Dali - Jinghong. We join the flight to Jinghong (Dai minority area, 40 minutes flight). Afternoon take a visit to Wild Elephant Valley (natural reserve area), walk through the forest and then take cable car. Overnight in Jinghong.
Day 7: Jinghong. Today go to visit Ganlanba morning market, Water Dai Village, Burmese temple, rubber garden, Botanic Garden (the biggest one in China). In the evening enjoy the Dai BBQ as dinner. Overnight in Jinghong.
Day 8: Jinghong - Chiang Saen (Thailand, 344 km, cruises 10 hours). The upper Mekong flows through Southern China, Burma and Laos and is now opened to foreigners. We join an express boat for the spectacular daytime journey to the Golden Triangle. We hope to land at a Laotian Aini Village. After our exhilarating boat ride we reach the Golden Triangle region between Burma, Laos and Thailand and disembark at Chiang Saen at 18:00. Overnight in Chiang Saen.
Day 9: Chiang Saen. Today we will visit the Doi Tung Botanical Gardens in a beautiful hilltop setting within this notorious region, where the King and Queen of Thailand have encouraged modern crops to replace opium poppies. We visit the Hall of Opium to learn about this crop in a spectacular underground setting. We also visit the Giant Buddha, overlooking the Mekong at Sop Ruak, and the smugglers’ town of Mai Sai on the Thai/Burmese border, where thousands of stalls sell contraband. Overnight in Chiang Saen.
Day 10: Chiang Saen - Houay Xay. Boat departs around 07:30 a.m. One stop is made to visit and admire the authentic rural life of hill tribe settlements. Lunch on board. Arrival in Houay Xay before 17:00 hrs. Border crossing and transfer to Houay Xay for overnight. Overnight in Houay Xay.
Day 11: Houay Xay. Breakfast at hotel. As you make your way down river, you will visit the Pak-Ou caves, where thousands of Buddha statues are stored. You will pass areas of un-spoilt forest with little villages along the riverbanks and perhaps the odd elephant or two with his mahout. You are going to visit a fishing village as well. You will arrive in Pakbeng around sunset. Overnight in Pakbeng.
Day 12: Pakbeng - Luang Prabang. Arrival in Luang Prabang. Transfer to hotel in town. Join us on a city tour visiting Wat Visun, Wat Aham, the beautiful Wat Xieng Thong, walking along the street, Wat Mai,This afternoon climb Phusi hill to enjoy the view overlooking the city and watch the amazing sunset. From here we can see the magic Mekong and the small Nam Khan rivers.
Overnight in Luang Prabang.
Day 13: Transport to airport for leaving. End of service.
- This cost is based on a group of at least 18 persons.
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