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Your Position: HomeChina ToursChina Train Tours9 Days Fantastic Natural Beauty Tour to South China
  • Li River
  • Lijiang Ancient Town
  • Stone Forest
  • The Ancient City of Dali
  • West Street
  • Erhai Lake
  • West Hill
  • Yulong Snow Mountain
  • Reed Flute Cave
  • The Three Pagodas of Chongsheng Temple
  • Golden Temple
  • Dongba Culture Museum
  • House of Bai People in Xizhou
  • Tie-Dyeing Zhoucheng

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

9 Days Fantastic Natural Beauty Tour to South China

Tour Code: CTT19
Tour Duration: 9 Days
Destination: Dali, Guilin, Kunming, Lijiang, Yangshuo
Tour overview: Combining China natural beauty, and its Ethnic Minority Groups, this China tour is quite special. You will visit Guilin, and see the karst mountains which have made it a popular destination for visitors for millennia. You will visit the ancient towns of Dali and Lijiang, and see how the local Ethnic Minority groups live. On this tour you will travel by train, which will allow you to see parts of China unseen by those flying overhead.

  • Tour Summary
  • Day by Day Itinerary
  • Reviews
9 Days Fantastic Natural Beauty Tour to South China 9 Days Fantastic Natural Beauty Tour to South China 9 Days Fantastic Natural Beauty Tour to South China 9 Days Fantastic Natural Beauty Tour to South China

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 . Then be transferred to railway station to take overnight train to Dali. Details... B, L
Day 3 Dali Arrive in Dali, be met and transferred to your hotel. Then visit Erhai Lake , The Ancient City of Dali , and 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
Guanfang Hotel Lijiang Yinxiang Old City Hotel Grand Lijiang 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
Guanfang Hotel Lijiang Yinxiang Old City Hotel Grand Lijiang Hotel
B, L
Day 6 Lijiang/Kunming Take morning flight to Kunming. Be met and transferred to visit the West Hill and Dragon Gate. Afternoon you will be transferred to train station for overnight train to Guilin. Details... B, L
Day 7 Guilin Arrive at Guilin railway station at noon time. Your guide will greet you and transferred to your hotel. In the afternoon visit the Reed Flute Cave . Details...
First Class Deluxe Class Tourist Class
Sheraton Guilin Hotel Guilin Bravo Hotel GuiLin Eva Inn Hotel
L
Day 8 Guilin/Yangshuo Full day tour to take the Li River and see West Street . Details...
First Class Deluxe Class Tourist Class
Guilin Yangshuo Green Lotus Hotel New Century Hotel Aiyuan Hotel
B, L
Day 9 Yangshuo/Guilin Free at leisure this morning. In the afternoon, be escorted to Guilin Train Station for overnight train to Shenzhen or Guangzhou. Then proceed to your next destination. 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 / Dali (B, L)

Kunming / Dali (B, L)

Transfer Via: Overnight Train (soft sleeper class) on our arrangement
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).

In the evening, you will be transferred to railway station to take overnight train to Dali.

Day 3 Dali (B, L)

Dali (B, L)

Sightseeing: Erhai Lake, Ancient City of Dali, Three Pagodas of Chongsheng Temple

Arrive in Dali in the morning, your local guide will meet you at railway station and then transfer you to your hotel for breakfast and have a short rest.

First we will 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 wall 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 a 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 direction 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 Zhoucheng, 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 / Kunming / Guilin (B, L)

Transfer via: Flight / Overnight train (soft sleeper class) on our arrangement
Sightseeing: West Hill, Dragon Gate

Have an early breakfast, then be transferred to airport to take morning flight to Kunming. Be met and transferred to visit the West Hill and Dragon Gate. Afternoon you will be transferred to train station for overnight train to Guilin.

Day 7 Guilin (L)

Sightseeing:  Reed Flute Cave

Arrive at Guilin railway station at noon time. Your guide will greet you and transferred to your hotel. In the afternoon visit the Reed Flute Cave, which is a vast and very impressive cave system, one of the most important sights of Guilin. Known as "the Palace of Natural Arts", you can see beautiful stalactites & stalagmites and learn how they are formed.

Day 8 Guilin/Yangshuo (B, L)

Guilin/Yangshuo (B, L)

Sightseeing: Li River Cruise, West Street

Guilin is famous for its picturesque scenery, and the best way to see it is from the deck of Li River Cruise ships. In the morning you will depart from your hotel and be transferred to the Zhujiang Pier (about 1 hour drive) for a 4.5 hours wonderful cruise. You will enjoy the unique mountains, peaceful green fields, farms and villages with water buffalos, cows wondering around on both sides of the river bank.

In the afternoon you will disembark at the old town Yangshuo. Having a history of more than 1,400 years, West Street is the oldest street in Yangshuo. You will have some time to explore the old town's lovely attractions.

Stay tonight in Yangshuo.

Day 9 Yangshuo / Guilin / Depart (B)

Transfer via: Overnight train (soft sleeper class) on our arrangement

Free at leisure this morning. In the afternoon, you will be escorted to Guilin Train Station for overnight train to Shenzhen or Guangzhou. Then proceed to your next destination.

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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Comment on our service from Caitlin Radich, New Zealand

Overall we loved our tours. Zhangjiajie was fantastic! Our tour was really great and we would recommend it. Beijing - our guide was fantastic! So full of facts, great English and overall fantastic. Overall we have found dealing with your company a very pleasant experience, and we like the individualised aspect of it.

Hi Sandy,

Nice to hear from you. Overall we loved our tours. Zhangjiajie was fantastic! Our tour was really great and we would recommend it. Our tour guide was really lovely in zhangjiajie, but her English was less than perfect, but overall that didn’t hinder anything.

Beijing - our guide was fantastic! So full of facts, great English and overall fantastic. Forrest was his name. Seeing the wall was amazing!!!

Overall we have found dealing with your company a very pleasant experience, and we like the individualised aspect of it.

I hope you find this helpful, and thank you for your help,

Thanks

Caitlin


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Comment on our service from Wolfgang Ernst Kasper, Australia
I want to to thank you again for your good services. Everything worked out as expected ––or better! Getting the gaotie tickets was easy, and the two excursions were most enjoyable.

Dear Sandy,

now that we have returned home after a marvellous trip through China, I want to to thank you again for your good services.

Everything worked out as expected –– or better! Getting the gaotie tickets was easy, and the two excursions were most enjoyable. In particular, the guide at Huangshan – I called her ciao Xue (Little Snow) – was attentive and intelligent, great company!


After the hike up and down on Huangshan, we felt great: we can still do that at our age in the high seventies!


Hakka Country


Finally, it was a pleasant surprise to get your call. That was unexpected, but much appreciated.

Keep selling China to the world!

Best wishes

Wolfgang


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