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Your Position: HomeCity ToursKunming Tours8 Days Yunnan Discovery Tour of Kunming, Dali, Lijiang, Shangri-la
  • Lijiang Ancient Town
  • Songzanlin Monastery
  • Stone Forest
  • The Ancient City of Dali
  • Bitahai Nature Reserve
  • Erhai Lake
  • Yulong Snow Mountain
  • First Bend of the Yangtze River
  • Napahai Lake
  • The Three Pagodas of Chongsheng Temple
  • Golden Temple
  • Tiger Leaping Gorge
  • Dongba Culture Museum
  • House of Bai People in Xizhou
  • Tie-Dyeing Zhoucheng

You can click to see the attractions included in this tour itinerary.

8 Days Yunnan Discovery Tour of Kunming, Dali, Lijiang, Shangri-la

Tour Code: CTKM03
Tour Duration: 8 Days
Attractions: Lijiang Ancient Town, Songzanlin Monastery, Stone Forest, The Ancient City of Dali, Bitahai Nature Reserve, Erhai Lake, Yulong Snow Mountain, First Bend of the Yangtze River, Napahai Lake, The Three Pagodas of Chongsheng Temple, Golden Temple, Tiger Leaping Gorge, Dongba Culture Museum, House of Bai People in Xizhou, Tie-Dyeing Zhoucheng
Tour Overview: Yunnan (Beautiful Clouds in the South) Province encompasses 394,000 square kilometers (152,084 square miles) and has a population of more than 42 million people. It takes pride in its richly-endowed natural resources and its advantageous cultural resources, the most attractive of which is the folklore and culture of the 25 minority people……

  • Tour Summary
  • Day by Day Itinerary
  • Reviews

B=Breakfast, L=Lunch, D=Dinner

Tour Dates Destinations Services Provided Meals Included
Day 1 Kunming Arrive in Kunming, be met and transferred to hotel. Details...
First Class Deluxe Class Tourist Class
Howard Johnson Tropical Garden Plaza Kunming Kunming Jin Jiang Hotel Yunnan Jinhua International Hotel
/
Day 2 Kunming Full day tour to Stone Forest Golden Temple Details...
First Class Deluxe Class Tourist Class
Howard Johnson Tropical Garden Plaza Kunming Kunming Jin Jiang Hotel Yunnan Jinhua International Hotel
B,L
Day 3 Kunming/Dali In the morning, be transferred to airport for flight to Dali.
Arrive in Dali, be met and visit Erhai Lake The Ancient City of Dali The Three Pagodas of Chongsheng Temple Details...
First Class Deluxe Class Tourist Class
Dali Regent Hotel Dali Asia Star Hotel Landscape Courtyard
B,L,
Day 4 Dali/Lijiang Drive to Lijiang, on the way visit House of Bai People in Xizhou Tie-Dyeing Zhoucheng .
Arrive in Lijiang, visit Lijiang Ancient Town Details...
First Class Deluxe Class Tourist Class
Crowne Plaza Lijiang Ancient Town Hexi Hotel, Lijian Jinhong Villa Hotel
B,L
Day 5 Lijiang Full day visit Yulong Snow Mountain (take the cable car to Spruce Plateau and overlook the Jade Dragon Snow Mountain), Dongba Culture Museum Details...
First Class Deluxe Class Tourist Class
Crowne Plaza Lijiang Ancient Town Hexi Hotel, Lijian Jinhong Villa Hotel
B,L
Day 6 Lijiang/Diqing(Shangri-La) In the morning, drive to Shangri-La, on the way visit Tiger Leaping Gorge First Bend of the Yangtze River Details...
First Class Deluxe Class Tourist Class
Shangri-la Paradise Hotel Holy Palace Hotel Pacific Rim Hotel
B,L
Day 7 Diqing(Shangri-La) Full day tour to Songzanlin Monastery Bitahai Nature Reserve Napahai Lake . Details...
First Class Deluxe Class Tourist Class
Shangri-la Paradise Hotel Holy Palace Hotel Pacific Rim Hotel
B,L
Day 8 Diqing(Shangri-La)/Kunming Flight from Shangri-la to Kunming. Details... B
1. Normally hotels allow a maximum of 3 adults per room with an extra bed, at extra charge. Some hotels will allow three adults and a small child.
2. Tour price is indicative only, please enquire for a detailed quotation.
3. More people more discounts. Please enquire for more details.

Price Inclusions and Exclusions

Price Include

A. Entrance fees:To scenic spots as listed above in the itinerary.
B. Meals: All meals as specified in the itinerary.
C. Private Transfers: Among airports, hotels and scenic spots while sightseeing in the above cities by the private air conditioned vehicle.
D. Guide and Driver: As outlined in the itinerary, a well selected English-speaking guide and driver will accompany you throughout the entire tour in that city. They do not fly with you from one city to another.
E. Hotels: Hotel Based on two persons sharing one room with twin beds. All hotels as listed in the above itinerary serve daily western or Chinese breakfast. All rooms are air-conditioned with private facilities unless specified.
F. Luggage Transfers: Between airports and hotels.
G. Service Charge & Government Taxes.
H. Travel insurance in mainland China during the above travel period.
I. Arrangements: The tour cost includes planning, handling, operational and communication charges.

Price Exclude

A. Entry or Exit China International Airfare or train tickets.
B. Visa Fees.
C. Excess Baggage Charges.
D. Personal Expenses: Expenses of a purely personal nature such as laundry, drinks, fax, telephone call, optional activities, sightseeing or meals which are not included in the itinerary.
E. Meals: Any meals which are not specified with "B", "L" or "D".
F. Single Room Supplement.
G. Insurance coverage of personal loss, illness or damages incurred during your trip.
H. Gratuities, Tips to Guides and Drivers.

Day 1 Arrival Kunming

Transfer via: Flight on your own arrangement

Upon your arrival in Kunming, your local guide will welcome you and transfer you to your hotel. For the rest of the day you will enjoy some leisure time to relax or have a first look at the new surrounding.
 

Day 2 Kunming (B, L)

Kunming (B, L)

Sightseeing: Stone Forest, Golden Temple

Today we will go on a full day trip to Stone forest. Due to a process of weathering and erosion, nature has created an art gallery of stone sculpture here. This typical karst physiognomy seems like a forest of stone pillars and boulders. You will see fascination natural creations like Lion Arbor, Sword Peak Pond, Lotus Peak, Moon Lake, Jade Lake, and Dadie Waterfall.

Then we will head to Golden Temple, located on top of Mingfeng (Singing Phoenix) Hill. It is the largest copper temple in China and is also known as the Tongwa Temple (Bronze Tile Temple).
 

Day 3 Kunming / Dali (B, L)

Kunming / Dali (B, L)

Transfer via: Flight on our arrangement
Sightseeing: Erhai Lake, Ancient City of Dali, Three Pagodas of Chogsheng Temple

In the morning your local guide will transfer you to te airport where you take the flight to Dali.

Upon your arrival there, you will be greeted by your local guide and then visit Erhai Lake. Erhai Lake is the largest highland lake next to Dianchi and one of the seven biggest fresh water lakes in China. It means, 'sea shaped like an ear', in Chinese. Implying that the lake is ear shaped and as large as a sea, hence it was so named. The lake covers an area of 250 square kilometers and is located about two kilometers east of Dali.

The next stop will be the Ancient City of Dali, which is a magnificent ancient city with a perimeter of 6 kilometers. Its former city walll is 7.5 meters high and 6 meters thick. There used to be four city gates, each on one side. On the gates were the gate towers. While Xiaguan, the capital of the Autonomous Region of Dali, depicts you an scene of prosperity and bloom, the Ancient City of Dali will give you a simple, unsophisticated and quiet impression.

Finally you will see the Three Pagodas of Chongsheng Temple. It is a symbol of the history of Dali City, and a record of the development of Buddhism in the area. As its name implies, Three Pagodas are made of three ancient independent pagodas forming a symmetrical triangle. This is unique in China.
 

Day 4 Dali / Lijiang (B, L)

Dali / Lijiang (B, L)

Transfer via: Private Car on our arrangement
Sightseeing:
House of Bai people in Xizhou, Tie-Dyeing Zoucheng, Lijiang Ancient Town

In the morning you will take a private car into the dicrection of Lijiang. On the way, you will make a first stop at a house of Bai people in Xizhou. The town of Xizhou is next to Erhai Lake and the Wanhua Brook. Historically, it was a military fortress of Nanzhao Kingdom and a temporary palace of the King of Nanzhao. Because of its favorable geographical situation, the town used to be a commercial centre before 1949 and where more than 140 national capitalist families used to live. Their houses are of the typical Bai design known as "Sanfang Yizhaobi" (a courtyard rooms on three sides and a screen wall on the remaining side) and "Sihe Wutianjing" (one big courtyard with four smaller ones at the four corners of the main one).

Our next stop will be Tie-Dyeing Zoucheng, the largest and the farthest northern village of Dali City. The village has 7,571 inhabitants of 1,470 families. The entire village is in a square shape with row upon row of houses.

Arriving in Lijiang, you will be met by your local guide and then visit Lijiang Ancient Town. It is also known as Dayan Town in Lijiangba and was included in the UNESCO world heritage list in 1997.  It was first built in the Southern Song Dynasty and in 1253 and became larger during Ming and Qing dynasties.
 

Day 5 Lijiang (B, L)

Lijiang (B, L)

Sightseeing: Yulong Snow Mountain, Dongba Village

Today we will depart to Yulong Snow Mountain. It is the southernmost marine glacier in the temperate zone of the northern hemisphere. Altogether there are 13 peaks along the range, stretching for over 35km from south to north. The summit, Shanzidou, is 5596 meters above sea level. Viewed from afar, the snow-capped range resembles a silver dragon with snow curling up its middle. Rich forest, herb and animal resources thrive on the mountain.

On our way we will stop at Dongba Village in Yushui Stockade, which is built completely according to the traditional life style of Naxi Minority. You can feel the traditional atmosphere of national culture from the layout of its yard, building facilities, tools and details of life.
 

Day 6 Lijiang / Shangri-La (B, L)

Lijiang / Shangri-La (B, L)

Transfer via: Private Car on our arrangement
Sightseeing: Tiger Leaping Gorge, First Bend of the Yangtze River

In the morning you will be transferred to Shangri-La.

On the way, you will fist visit Tiger Leaping Gorge. Being one of Yunnan's most famous spots, the gorge itself is tucked neatly between the Yulong Snow Mountain and Haba Snow Mountain, which surround its two sides.

Secondly, we will see the first bend of the Yangtze River. It lies in Shigu Town, Lijiang. Rushing down from the Qinghai-Tibet Plateau, "the roof of the world", the Yangtze surges into Yunnan from its northwest, where it meets Lancang River and Nu River. Then, they go together through the high mountains and deep gorges of Hengduan Mountains. You will be impressed by this natural power.
 

Day 7 Shangri-La (B, L)

Shangri-La (B, L)

Sightseeing: Song Zanling Monastery, Bitahai Nature Reserve, Napahai Lake

Today your tour will start with a visit of Songzanlin Monastery, which is is a typical Lama monastery. Located at the foot of Mt. Foping, four kilometers north of Zhongdian County, a monastery was first built here in 1679 and has been rebuilt many times. The architectural style of the building is a faithful imitation of the Potala Palace in Lhasa, Tibet.

Then you will see Bitahai Nature Reserve, an intact natural attraction with various species of flora and fauna and of course picturesque landscapes. In the reserve itself, century-old pines and cypresses are growing around Bitahai Lake, in which the water is crystal clear. In the middle of the lake there is an islet covered by cedars and azaleas.

Finally, we will head to Napahai Lake, both an ideal grazing field for herdsmen and a paradise for many species of birds. This is, in the true sense, a seasonal lake. When summer comes, snow on the adjacent mountains melts and flows down into about ten rivers forming a vast lake. In the dry season, Napahai becomes boundless green grassland--the best time for herding sheep or cattle. Nevertheless when you will come, the whole scenery will be kind of unique.
 

Day 8 Shangri-La / Kunming / Departure Kunming (B)

Transfer via: First Flight on our arrangement
                Second Flight on your own arrangement

Today will be free for your own purposes, until our guide will escort you to the airport to take the flight to Kunming. From there, you will take your next flight to the following destination.
 

Comment on our service from Annette Esselborn, Germany

We had a wonderful day. The tour was well organized. We would also book it again with you. The tour guide was awesome! A big praise. She patiently answered all the questions, was funny, responded to the group. That was really great.

Hello Sandy,

 

Thank you for your request. We had a wonderful day, even though we experienced exactly the snow on the Chinese wall. The tour was well organized. We would also book it again with you.

 

The Ming Tombs were interesting, but of course the Great Wall of China was the highlight for us. And despite the snow, it was an experience. Somewhat hectic was the climb from lunch (by the way very, very delicious!) But I know that this was only due to the weather that day.

 

The tour guide was awesome! A big praise. She patiently answered all the questions, was funny, responded to the group. That was really great.

If I come back in 2 years with a group, we would like to book again the same tour (maybe without snow ....) with the same tour guide.

 

Our heartfelt thanks!

Viele Grüße

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Comment on our service from Nancy Tuksaudom,USA

Each and every city was thoroughly explored with the wonderful guides and drivers that you arranged for us.  We also enjoyed every hotel that you reserved for us. We especially enjoyed each guide, their knowledge, courtesy, and personality! We had a thoroughly wonderful time in China and thank you for all the work you did to plan it for us.  Should we ever visit China again, we will contact you to assist us!

 

Hi Sandie!

Thanks for your email! We are both doing fine and have happy memories of the time we spent touring China, thanks to you! 

We are home now (since early February) and planning our next trip in Mexico for April.

  

We totally enjoyed our time in China, despite the fact that it was cooler than we had planned for/expected. Each and every city was thoroughly explored with the wonderful guides and drivers that you arranged for us.  We also enjoyed every hotel that you reserved for us, as we did the flights, as well. The only semi-negative comment was that the Guilin hotel heat situation was sub-par. 

We especially enjoyed each guide, their knowledge, courtesy, and personality! They often showed us much more than we expected and worked very hard to make all connections efficiently, etc. 

  

I did complete feedback forms for each guide in each city. I hope that they forwarded them to you. They were likely to be more thorough than what I just wrote to you. 

The bottom line, though, was that we had a thoroughly wonderful time in China and thank you for all the work you did to plan it for us.  Should we ever visit China again, we will contact you to assist us! 

If you ever visit Seattle, Washington, please let me know and I/we will show you around our beautiful city and environs. 

Thanks again!  

Nancy and Pricha (Tuksaudom)

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Comment on our service from Gracie Chan, USA

We had a wonderful trip! You planned and coordinated everything really well. We especially appreciated all your help on the first day when we missed our train and got stranded in Beijing~THANK YOU! Everything went smoothly and our guides were most accommodating. Most of them were quite fluent and we don't have any problem understanding them. I will definitely recommend you to my friends and seek you out if I visit China the future.

 

Hello Sandy,

Hope you had a nice weekend. Thanks for being patient. Here's what we thought of the trip.

Overall, we had a wonderful trip! You planned and coordinated everything really well. We especially appreciated all your help on the first day when we missed our train and got stranded in Beijing~THANK YOU!

Everything went smoothly and our guides were most accommodating. Most of them were quite fluent and we don't have any problem understanding them. It was great to have their help dealing with hotel checking-ins and transportation details. It was very convenient and helpful. Having to move in and out of hotels daily and trying to catch all those train on time are very stressful ~ A big "Thanks" for all their help.  

I want you to know that we consider Jackie Zhang (our guide for Zhangye & Dunhuang) to be the BEST of all the guides we encountered on this trip. She is enthusiastic, meticulous and extremely knowledgeable. You can tell that she enjoys her job tremendously!

         

My observation ~ Most "Foreign Visitors" don't always have a base knowledge of the history of the places they are visiting. A SHORT & CONCISE explanation is better than a long and winding narrative. It should not be assumed that one formula works for everyone. Some visitors are more knowledgeable than others and vice versa.

We enjoyed all the sights we visited on this trip tremendously. That said, there are some room for improvements.

The one disappointment for me was the visit to Qinghai Lake. It was too commercialized. It would have been so much better if we were able to stop by the lake area BEFORE the visitor center where it was much more pristine and unspoiled. After all, we are there to take it the natural beauty of the area after all.

Our guide and driver was most accommodating when we asked them to stop by the side of the road in order for us to photograph herds of YAK and sheep. It was the highlight of the trip for me! I am sure other visitors will feel the same way.

My suggestion ~ Maybe some sort of arrangements can be made with local farmers that owned land along the Qinghai lake for a short stop over in your future tours? This way, your visitors can have wonderful opportunities to photograph and experience the scenery and lifestyle of the local people.

My observation ~ In Turpan, the Turpan Museum would have been a BETTER choice than the visit to the Karez well system (Kan'erjing Museum). There is really nothing much to see here.  

The International Grand Bazaar was also a bit of a disappointment, it was too touristy. I think we would find it much more interesting if we have the opportunity to visit a local street market instead.

We rode a donkey cart at the Flaming Mountains. It was great fun! I think this should be included in the future and its a great way to help the local make some extra money too. You agree?

Hotels ~ We still prefer staying at International Brand hotels. We really liked the Sofitel Hotels (in Xian & Xining) and the Sheraton in Urumqi.  

We find the service and breakfast food selection available at the local brand hotels are still somewhat lacking compared to the International Brand hotels.

Food ~ We had some amazing and some mediocre food on this trip. The quality of the meal is inconsistent. I guess it depended a lot on your local tour coordinators?    

I hope our observations and honest suggestions are helpful to you. Please do not consider this is as criticism of our trip but as suggestions for improvements. We had lots of fun and we hope you'll be able to attract more visitors to your tour. I will definitely recommend you to my friends and seek you out if I visit China the future.

I have attached the "corrected" photo and an extra one taken at the Flaming Mountains. You have our permission to include all three of the photos along with the following review to your website. I will write a review for TripAdvisor.com later.

Regards,

Gracie.


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Comment on our service from Sergey Shunailov, Russia

It is impossible to find any imperfection in the service. Nice guide with good English and nice driver. Thanks a lot. If I'll have free time in my next trip to China I'll use again only your company.

Dear Sandy,

Nice to hear from you. The one day Beijing tour was fine. It is impossible to find any imperfection in the service. Nice guide with good English and nice driver. Thanks a lot.

If I'll have free time in my next trip to China I'll use again only your company.

Best regards,

Sergey


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Comment on our service from Thomas Anthony Lucker, USA

It was great and the guide was tremendous!

Hi Sandy,


It was great and the guide was tremendous.  I had a great time in Kaifeng. I think we have another tour coming up quickly on the 26th to Luoyang.  :)  


Tom

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Comment on our service from Robert William Miller, USA

It was a good trip.  The sites were very interesting and unique.

It was a good trip.  The sites were very interesting and unique.   The Dazu museum was very interesting since did not know there were so many of the grottoes in China and other countries as well. We didn’t take lunch but asked rather to see another grotto.  Would recommend going to the small grotto and then the larger one and then museum in that order.

Rob Miller

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