Home to many of China's ethnically diverse minority peoples, Kunming & the Stone Forest, delightful Dali, UNESCO-listed Lijiang and the awesome Tiger Leaping Gorge. Yunnan Province offers an uncommon Chinese experience.
Welcome to China and the start of your holiday! Enjoy an arrival transfer to our hotel. The capital of Yunnan Province, Kunming rests at 2000m above sea level! Its gentle weather and floral wealth have earned it the nickname ‘City of Eternal Spring’. Later today, you’ll visit the picturesque Western Hills and the Dragon Gate Grotto. Overnight - Kunming (D)
Kunming - Dali. Excursion to Stone Forest. Celebrated as a natural wonder, it’s Yunnan’s most visited sight. As you stroll along the winding paths and lookout points, you’ll be in awe of the bizaare, tightly packed formations of almost ‘petrified’ stone that forms this unusual attraction 120 km from Kunming. Tonight catch the overnight (hard) sleeper train to Dali. Overnight - Sleeper Train (B, L, D)
Picturesquely situated on Lake Erhai with a backdrop formed by the peaks of the 50km long Cang Shang range, Dali is a great place for some gentle-paced exploration and a little relaxation. Covering only about 4 sq km, much of Dali is contained by the remains of its Mingdynasty walls. Sightseeing in Dali and surrounds includes a cruise on Lake Erhai, some orientation stops at some ancient temples and villages, a visit to Butterfly Spring - a popular spot surrounded by a marble ballustrade and overhung by an ancient tree that produces butterfly-like flowers and the famous Three Pagodas. Built when the region was a major Buddhist centre, Dali’s distinctively tall pagodas remain upright, despite wars and earthquakes. The largest of them - Qianxun tower dates back to 824 AD, some hundred years older than the two smaller octagonal pagodas behind, is 64m high, and is embellished with Buddhas made from local richly veined marble on each of its 16 levels. Whilst sealed (preventing entrance inside), in any case the pagodas are best seen from a distance to take in their sheer size. Back in Dali,enjoy some free time exploring the old section of the town. Overnight - Dali (B, L, D)
Dali - Lijiang. Leaving Dali on day 4, you’ll travel north to UNESCO-listed Lijiang - a Naxi stronghold, enjoy free time in the labyrinthine streets of Dayan Old Town. Evening Naxi music show.
On day 5 we head to the thrillingly named Tiger leaping gorge on the Yangtze River, where there is time to walk and take in the scenery. Some 16km long and up to 3000m deep, it is the world's deepest canyon. The gorge is so narrow at various points that legend has it a tiger once escaped pursuit by leaping across. Visiting the gorge, you’ll have a chance to walk a section and take in the dramatic, yet stark scenery. Overnight - Lijiang (B:2, L:2, D:2)
Lijiang - Kunming via Dali. Enjoy an excursion to the stunning Jade Dragon Snow Mountain; its landscape includes one of the southernmost glaciers in the world. Access to the mountain is provided by a cable lift to Dragon Spruce Meadow, halfway to the glacier peak. Visit also Yufeng Si Monastery. This evening we take the overnight soft sleeper train to Kunming. Overnight - Sleeper Train (B)
Hotel check-out and included onward transfer to airport.
FROM USD $1,979
Prices & Departure Dates
Prices shown are ‘per person’, based on a travelling party of at least 2 adults. The single supplement price needs to be added to the twin/double price if single rooms are required. If travelling solo, an additional ‘1-person’ supplement will apply
Prices are indicative and will vary depending on your chosen hotels, room availability as well as time of travel. Please bear this in mind if comparing prices as we always aim to deliver exceptional value.
Please note that discounts will apply if there are more 4 our more people in your travelling party, since fixed costs like transportation and guiding are shared across the group.
Yunnan Experience - 8 days
Make the most of your time away! Listed below are the optional activities that are available on this trip. Please note that you will need to book these prior to travel as we cannot always guarantee availability of these activities once you are on holiday.
Drop into Guangzhou on your way to Hong Kong. Sitting on Pearl River, vibrant and lively Guangzhou or formally Canton offers a swag of attractions including Shamian Island, Chen Family Temple, the tomb of the King of Southern Yue, parks, gardens and markets. Famed for it’s cuisine (Cantonese, no less) and also the riverfront shops at Yangjiang Road.
Renowned for its striking, if bizarre scenery - vast areas of karst limestone outcrops that rise up from flat rice paddy fields, Guilin is often the subject of Chinese painting. The Lijiang River cruise is a true pleasure that offers an endless procession of peaks and simple villages. Charming Yangshuo, a river town lined with cafes and little shops selling handicrafts, clothing and curios, offers gentle respite far from the madding crowds of the cities.
If you are interested in trips with similar experiences to this one, then check out some of the ones we've listed below.
From the snow capped peaks of the mighty Himalayas and Everest - the world's highest mountain, to Patagonia's immense glaciers, Morocco's Atlas Mountains, Russia's Urals and China's breathtaking Yellow Mountain. Our tours visit all of these breathtaking mountain regions and more.
Highlights & Inclusions
Below is a list of key highlights and what is included on this tour. Further, where appropriate, we have listed the items that are not included in the tour price.
Kunming - Western Hills, Dragon Gate Grotto, Stone Forest
Ancient temples and local villages en route
Lijiang - UNESCO-listed Dayan Old Town, Naxi Music Show, Tiger Leaping Gorge - trekking/walking
Yufeng Si Monastery
Dali - Lake Er Hai
Butterfly Springs & Three Pagodas
Yulong Xue Shan (Jade Dragon Snow Mountain)
7 breakfasts, 5 lunches, 6 dinners
1 night sleeper train (hard sleeper cabin) Kunming - Dali
Lijiang - Naxi Music show
Airport arrival and departure transfer day 1 & day 8
English speaking specialist guides at local sights
Entrance fees to all included sites
5 nights 3 star hotels
1 night sleeper train(soft sleeper cabin) Lijiang - Kunming
Jade Dragon Snow Mountain (chairlift ride)
Excursions and touring of Kunming, Dali and Lijiang
All relevant transfers and transportation
What's Not Included
International flights and visa
Tipping - an entirely personal gesture
Laundry, drinks, items of a personal nature
Here's what some of our past travellers have written in to us and said about their experiences on this trip.
Yunnan Experience - 8 days
Craig, just a brief note to say thank you for organising our tour of China. We had a great time and saw some very exciting sites.
The whole tour ran very smoothly. There were people to meet us every where we went and we were very effectively transported around the country. The guides were also very willing to change the itinery to suit our needs - we wanted to do more walking than was originally planned.
Thanks for your help