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Welcome to Guilin, Guangxi Province! Airport arrival and transfer to your hotel.
Today you have the opportunity to hike in the Dragons Backbone. Two hours from Guilin is Longsheng, surrounded on all four sides by forested mountains. With four ethnic minorities, Longsheng is a vibrant cultural town and the place to pick up the little stones that are in bonsai pots, the trading of which was illegal until a few years ago. Hike along the stone paths that are no more than a metre wide for a couple of hours and you will have panoramic views of the ribbon-like terraces with picturesque valleys and meandering streams below. It also gives you the chance to see the different traditional costumes as the local women work the fields – quite a colourful sight.
This morning drive on to Yangshuo. Renowned for its striking, if bizarre scenery, vast areas of karst limestone outcrops which rise up from flat rice paddy fields. From Yangshuo it is possible to take a relaxing cruise by simple bamboo raft or motorised long boat along the River Li passing an endless procession of peaks and remote villages.
Returning to Guilin we tour the enormous Reed Flute Caves. Take an afternoon stroll along the picturesque riverside foot bridges and paths before our overnight train journey to Kunming.
Capital of Yunnan Province, Kunming lies 2000m above sea level. Its gentle weather and abundance of flowers have earned it the name ‘City of Eternal Spring’. Arriving mid morning, hotel check in and free time. Visit the stunning Western Hills or the Dragon Gate Grotto if you choose.
Today we visit the petrified Stone Forest, before flying onward to Lijiang.
Seeing the reflection of Jade Dragon Snow Mountain on the surface of a picturesque lake, is the highlight of the 3 - 4 hour hike toward Wenhai Eco lodge. Upon arrival explore the village and drink tea with a local family.
This morning you visit Yi Village before embarking on a 4 hour hike to visit the Lashishai community. Here, you’ll meet and stay overnight with a traditional Naxi indigenous family.
En route to Liming (approx 3 hour drive) visit the town of Shigu, located on the first bend of the Yangtze River. Here you undertake a 3 hour hike (or pony ride if you choose) to the 3000m summit of the Thousand Tortoise Mountain. After enjoying the spectacular panoramic views continue your walk (downhill) to Liming.
After breakfast head to the excitingly named Tiger leaping gorge on the Yangtze River. 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. After lunch you will board a train from Lijang to Dali.
This morning you have at leisure. Later this afternoon you will board a train back to Lijiang. Upon arriving in Lijiang you will be transferred to the airport from where you will board a flight to Chengdu.
About 100km northwest of Lijiang in Yunnan province is where the Yangtze River’s upper reaches, the Jingsha Jiang, channel with ...