Day 1: Beijing-Kunming. You'll begin your journey to the diverse and captivating province of Yunnan from the capital city, Kunming. Upon arrival at the Kunming International Airport, your local guide will meet us. And then you will be transferred to your hotel. Kunming is the capital of southwest China's Yunnan province, a primarily agricultural province of 45 million. Kunming has a population of five million and is located in one of the world's most geographically, ethnically, biologically and linguistically diverse regions. Situated at 1,900 meters (6,233 feet) above sea level and 25° north of the Equator it has a rather unique and pleasant climate for a Chinese city.
Day 2: Kunming-Stone Forest-Kunming. Special Experience: Taste the typical Yunnan food which is named Bridge crossing Noodles. You will drive 86 km to the Stone Forest. There is a local saying: "It is a waste of time not to visit the Stone Forest while visiting Kunming", which vividly expresses the deep love of the local people toward this world wonder. The quintessential karst landscape makes every tourist lost in wonder. After lunch drive back to Kunming and visit the Golden Temple which is the largest temple in China. Here you can see something of the origins of Taoism as the temple is located on Fengming Hill, the home of the Taoist Taihe Palace. And then, you will take a leisurely stroll along the Green Lake, a charming area of teahouses and small boutiques selling handicrafts and beautiful local paintings. Visit the Flower and Bird Market in the downtown. Includes: (B).
Day 3: Kunming-Dali. In the morning you will take the car to Dali via Chuxiong Yi Autonomous Prefecture. Dali, a historically and culturally famous city of China, is renowned for her historical interest. And then, you will visit the Three-pagoda in Chongsheng Temple, which is a typical historical symbol of Yunnan. It is also one of the oldest sublime architecture in South China. At last, you will visit the Old Dali Town, which is located at the foot of Cangshan Mountain. Includes: (B).
Day 4: Dali. Special Experience: Taste the Bai Three Course Tea and enjoy Bai Tea Art with ethnic dance and music. In the morning, you’ll travel in the Erhai Lake by boat and visit Jinsuo Island. After landing, you will head for Xizhou Town to fully appreciate Bai-style architecture, taste their fragrant three-course tea and explore their distinctive culture. At last, you will visit Zhoucheng Town, and Bai people's Died Cloth Work Shop. At night relax in Dali Old Town. Includes: (B).
Day 5: Dali–Lijiang. After breakfast drive about 180 km to Lijiang. On the way you will visit Xinhua Bai ethnic village and some farmland with local ethnic people. Lunch at NO.8 Restaurant at the bank of Black Dragon Pool, after lunch you’ll head for the scenic Black Dragon Pool and the Dongba Museum to explore the rich Naxi minority culture. Afternoon, explore Lijiang Old Town by yourself. Lijiang Old Town has a history more than 800 years; it was listed as the World Cultural Heritage by the UNESCO 1997. Here you will see the wonderful wooden architecture of Naxi ethnic people. Includes: (B).
Day 6: Lijiang-Jade Dragon Snow Mountain-Lijiang. Special Experience: Enjoy Naxi Orchestral and Show in Dongba Palace at night. You'll visit Ganhaizi Meadow, Baishui (White Water) River; take the chairlift to visit the Yak Meadow (3700 m) in the Yulong Snow Mountain. Jade Dragon Snow Mountain stretches a length of 35 kilometers (22 miles) and a width of 20 kilometers (13 miles). Looking from Lijiang Old Town in the south which is 15 kilometers (nine miles) away, the snow-covered and fog-enlaced mountain resembles a jade dragon lying in the clouds, hence, the name Jade Dragon Snow Mountain. The highest peak named Fan Peak (Shanzidou in Chinese) which is about 5596 meters above sea level. There are three cable cars in the mountain, the fist to the Glacier Park (4500 m), the second to Spruce Meadow (3200 m), the third to Yak Meadow (3700 m). In the afternoon, you'll stroll through Baisha Village, which is an enchanting traditional Yunnan village. Visit the Baisha Mural about 600 years old, which is one part of the World Cultural Heritage by the UNESCO 1997. After dinner, you will attend the Naxi Orchestral and Show in Dongba Palace. Includes: (B).
Day 7: Lijiang. Special Experience (Optional): Performance named the Soul of Mosuo. In the morning, dive 6 hours on the spectacle mountain road to visit the mysterious Lugu Lake. On the way, enjoy the beautiful view among the huge mountains and rivers. You plan to start your walking from Jin’anqiao Bridge to Shudi along the road at the bank of Yangtze River.you will see the beautiful canon and Yi ethnic people’s villages in the steep mountains. After 1 hour walking in the canon, you will continue the driving and you can stop in many Yi villages. Late afternoon, you will take the canoes to visit Liwubi Island and Snake Islet in Lugu Lake. (Optional) In the evening, take part in the night party and performance which is named the Soul of Mosuo. There are a lot of Mosuo young people dancing and singing around the fire in the outdoors theater. Includes: (B).
Day 8: Lijiang. In the morning, you will drive about 20 km to visit the Zhamei Lamaist Monastery and Mosuo Market in Yongning Town. Then drive back to Lijiang directly. The rest time will be free in Lijiang Old Town. Includes: (B).
Day 9 Lijiang-Shangri La. From Lijiang, you'll drive about 60 km to the First Bend on the Yangtze River with imposing gorge scenery, and the Iron Chain Bridge in the Stone Drum town. The town of Stone Drum got its name from a large, cylindrical, marble tablet shaped like a drum. The scenery is magnificent as the road running through the Lijiang valley which is filled with wheat fields and drying haystacks. Continue the driving 40 km more to visit the Tiger Leaping Gorge, the deepest gorge in the world. With 34 rapids of the Yangtze River, it is called the Jinsha in this area because you can find gold in the river. Afternoon, you'll head for Shangri La, the former Zhongdian. Upon arrival in Shangri La, you will have entered the Tibetan cultural area and a landscape of barley fields and yaks scattered in the valleys. Includes: (B), (L), (D).
Day 10: Shangri La. Special Experience: Tibetan home made at night and have dinner in Tibetan family with butter oil tea and Tibetan food. In the morning, you'll visit the Ganden Sumtseling Monastery, the largest Tibetan monastery in Yunnan. And afterwards you'll go and visit the tranquil Bita Lake and Shudu Lake. After having finished touring the Bita Lake and Shudu Lake, you'll visit the Old Town of Shangri La and the Guishan Park. At night you will visit a Tibetan family and taste the butter oil tea and Tibetan food. Includes: (B).
Day 11: Shangri La-Deqin. In the morning, drive 6 to 7 hours to Deqin County (3400 m altitude) which is 187 km away from Zhongdian through Baimang Snow Mountain Nature Reserve, you will be able to view Baimang Snow Mountain if the weather is clear, pass the top part of today at 4292 m altitude at 156 km. After traversing mountain ranges, you will make a short stop and have lunch at Benzilan town, take some shots on the first bend of Jinsha (Yangtze) River, Dongzhulin monastery and Baima (white horse) Snow Mountain. The view along the way is fantastic with different kinds of trees, streams down the valley, prayer flags and stupas, and Tibetan villages. Stay at Feilaisi. Includes: (B).
Day 12: Deqin. Try to get up early in the morning, drive 10 km to Feilai Monastery to view the magic sunrise of Meili Snow Mountain. Then drive another 1.5 hours to Mingyong village, where you will walk on the trails for about 4 km to the bottom of Mingyong Glaciers, walk another one hour or so, you will get to Tibetan Taizi Monastery-another good spot to view the magnificent Mingyong Glaciers. (You can choose to hire a horse to go up to the glacier on your own expense in order to save your energy.) After the tour, get back to Deqin County. Includes: (B).
Day 13: Deqin-Shangri La. After breakfast, drive from Deqen back to Shangri La. Relax in Shangri La Old Town.
Day 14: Shangri La-Kunming-Beijing. Take the flight to Kunming and change the flight for your back to Beijing. Includes: (B).
Also see tour packages in:
Asia China Local Culture Cultural Journey