Classic Journey to South of the Clouds Yunnan
In the 10 day “Classic Journey to South of the Clouds Yunnan” tour, you will visit the following must see destinations including: Kunming, Dali, Shaxi, Lijiang and Shangri La. Yunnan, which literally means South of the Clouds, lies to the south of the Tibet-Qinghai Plateau. Here you will visit villages and meet the Bai, Naxi, and Tibetan ethnic minority communities, as well as an ancient trading post along the Tea & Horse Caravan Trail. A diversity of culture and many breathtaking landscape offer a deep impression!
Flexible Tour Itinerary to Yunnan: Kunming, Dali, Lijiang and Shangri La
Day 1: Kunming - upon your arrival in Kunming, meet your personal guide at the arrival hall at the airport. The guide and driver will escort you back to your hotel. After check-in, take a stroll in the Flower and Bird Market.
Hotels recommended: Grand Park Hotel Kunming, Green Lake Hotel, Brilliant Resort & Spa or similar
Day 2: Kunming - Rise early for the 1.5 hours ride to the Stone Forest, a large forest of black limestone standing through winds and rains for millions of years. After lunch nearby, head back to the city to take a leisurely walk around Cuihu Park (Green Lake Park). A free park for the public and it also attract tens of thousands of black-headed galls in winter. Walk a few minutes to the Yuantong Temple, the largest Buddhist temple in Kunming city.
Day 3: Kunming/Dali - Morning flight to Dali, meet your guide and driver into Dali upon arrival. Together you will visit the ancient city, take a relaxing cruise on Erhai Lake and stop at Xizhou to see the featured Bai People’s houses.
Hotels recommended: Gurong Hotel, Landscape Hotel, Linden Center or similar
Day 4: Dali - after breakfast, visit the local bustling market and watch the people bargain, then visit the Chongsheng Temple and the Three Pagodas, the imperial pagodas with the longest history in southern China. Lunch is arranged in a local fine restaurant; take the cable car up to Cangshan Mountain to have a bird’s eye view of the ancient city and Erhai Lake.
Day 5: Dali/Lijiang - Drive about 3 hours from Dali to Lijiang, en route, visit Shaxi ancient town for its market and temples. When you get to Lijiang, feel free to have a rest or look around on your own.
Hotels recommended: Banyan Tree Lijiang, Pullman Lijiang Resort & Spa, Hotel Indigo Lijiang Ancient Town, InterContinental Resort Lijiang Ancient Town, Zen Garden Hotel (Lion Mountain Yard) or similar
Day 6: Lijiang Ancient Town - Deep visit to see Lijiang ancient town. The bustling market offers the chance to see different cooking materials and fresh fruits. Dragon Pool’s pond provides great photo opportunities to shoot Jade Dragon Snow Mountain’s reflection. Wangu Wooden Building on Lion Hill promises a bird’s eye view of the ancient town and Mu’s Mansion, a luxurious palace for the late head officer Mu’s family.
Day 7: Lijiang Ancient Town - Drive about an hour to Jade Dragon Snow Mountain, the Yak’s plateau is chosen to view the face of the highest peak – Shanzidou. Two way shuttle bus and cable car are included. After a late lunch, explore the small but interesting Baisha Village for its beautiful murals.
Day 8: Lijiang/Shangri La - Drive about 3 hours to Shangri-la, en route you will take great pictures of Yangtze’s first bend near Shigu Town. After lunch keep driving to get to Tiger Leaping Gorge, one of the most magnificent valleys in the world with a vertical drop of 3790 meters.
Hotels recommended: Banyan Tree Ringha, Songtsam Retreat At Shangri-La, Gyalthang Dzong Hotel or similar
Day 9: Shangri La - The whole morning is for the visit to Pudacuo National Park for its two fresh water highland lakes – Shudu Lake and Bita Lake, the pastures and wetlands are great for photos too. After a late lunch, visit Songzanlin Monastery, the largest Buddhist monastery in the province, constructed in the year 1681. At night, attend the bonfire party held in the ancient town with the local people in colorful traditional costumes.
Day 10: Shangri La/Kunming - Your guide and driver will escort you to the airport for your next destination.
Meals: breakfast included in the hotel, fine local restaurants for lunch or dinner upon your request
- Note: the Classic Journey to South of the Clouds Yunnan tour itinerary mentioned above is only a sample; we can customize this tour to meet your requests.