Lijiang Ancient Town

Tour Overview

The scenery of Yunnan is diverse ranging from ancient towns such as Lijiang ancient town and Shaxi ancient town to Jade Dragon Snow Mountain, from radiant and enchanting Shangri-La to Yuanyang Hani Rice Terraces. This 11 days Yunnan cultural tour will please you with the utmost fun by exploring the very meaningful sites in 7 different places. At the meantime, the considerate guide will do with all the trivial things in terms of bothering you least. Just enjoy yourself in these breathtaking landscapes and immerse yourself in kinds of ancient towns to feel the minority ethnic cultures. We also provide tailor-made Yunnan tour according to your needs, interests and budget, please contact us if you have more ideas about your Yunnan holiday.

Highlights of this tour:

*Check out why Kunming is reputed as “the Spring City” by joyfully wandering in this amazing city.
*Capture the beauty of nature in the magnificent Yuanyang Hani Terrace which is the paradise of photography tourists.
*Experience the Tibetan culture and lifestyle by visiting their house or chatting with local people in Shangri-La, also known as “Paradise on Earth”.
*Visit Lama’s private dormitory and get yourself some enlightenment in Songzanlin Monastery, to learn more about Tibetan Buddhism.
*Visit the deepest gorge in China-Tiger Leaping Gorge, which is well-known for its grotesque.
*With private driver and English guide, as well as our 10+ years experience, you will love your tour and completely feel the magic of this wonderland.

Day-by-day Itinerary

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  1. The guide will greet you at the airport holding a welcome sign with your name. Boarding a private, air-conditioned car and then you will be transferred directly to your hotel to check in. Later on, you will follow the guide to visit Green Lake Park. It is praised as an emerald set in the city of Kunming.

  2. AM: In the morning the guide will meet you at your hotel lobby and then take you to Stone Forest which is known for the typical karst landscape. Roaming in the special forest, you will be surprised by the surroundings that can be fantasied into the forms of sword, tower, mushroom and even human beings, the scene of which is peculiar and wonderful.

    Noon: Lunch at local restaurant.

    PM: Next, let’s drive 2 hours to Jianshui Ancient Town, which can be called a “museum of ancient architecture” and “museum of folk dwellings”. You can freely explore the town on your own, or just have a good rest in hotel keeping energy for the next day’s visiting.

    Accommodation: Hotel booked by us

    Kunming Stone Forest
    Kunming Stone Forest

  3. AM: Today you will pay a visit to Zhu Family Garden, the mansion built in the late Qing dynasty for Zhu’s family. The guide will show you around the garden and delight you with each unique part of design, including those exquisite decorations, function of the houses and its story at that time.

    Then come to Jianshui Confucius Temple, having a history of more than 700 years. The temple adopted the palace-type design with north-south axis symmetry. The whole building is magnificent and well-structured, giving people a sense of solemnity. It also highlights the property of Confucianism.

    Noon: Lunch at local restaurant.

    PM: After that, you will have lunch and be transferred to Yuanyang county for about 3 hours. You will check in at the local hotel tonight.

    Accommodation: Hotel booked by us

    Yunnan Jianshui Confucius Temple
    Jianshui Confucius Temple

  4. AM: In the morning, meet your guide at hotel lobby and then head to Hani Rice Terraces. It is the masterpiece that Hani minority people left by generations, which looks very spectacular. Walk through the surrounding villages and experience the ethnic customs of Yuanyang. You will also encounter the distinctive architectures and costumes.

    Noon: Lunch at local restaurant.

    PM: What comes after is Qingkou Hani Ethnic Village. Visitors can experience the essence of Hani terrace culture in just a few hours by walking along the village’s stone path, and view the national costumes, harrows, hoes and looms and other production and living tools.

    Accommodation: Hotel booked by us

    Tiger Mouth of Hani Rice Terraces, Yunnan
    Views from Tiger Mouth of Hani Rice Terraces

  5. After your breakfast, follow your guide to a local market to get down to the daily life of native minority. You will see people wear their traditional costumes and women carry the special pack basket made of bamboo, for carrying baby. The guide will narrate the customs and other ethnic things to make your tour more interesting.

    Bid farewell to Yuanyang, you will hop on the car for some 6 hours’ riding to Kunming city. Enjoy the scenery outside the window along the road. When you get to Kunming, the guide will help you check in at a local hotel.

    A local market in Yunnan
    A local market

    Accommodation: Hotel booked by us

  6. AM: In the morning, you will be picked up and then driven to the train station. Take bullet train for 2 hours and get to Dali. Upon your arrival, the guide will greet you at the train station and then transfer you to the hotel. You will reside in Old Town of Dali, where you can stroll along the alleys of the ancient city and enjoy its languid atmosphere. You can also catch the sight of those wearing traditional ethnic costumes, and take a leisure walk in the market street selling various souvenirs.

    Noon: Lunch at local restaurant.

    PM: After that, you will visit the Three Pagoda Temple, with Erhai Lake in the east and Cangshan Mountain in the west, and have a close contact with the only historical site left in the royal temple – the three pagodas, which is seen as the symbol of Dali. Finally, you will also skirt the Erhai Lake by a horse-drawn carriage, enjoying its beautiful scenery and story of the lake.

    Accommodation: Hotel booked by us

    Yunnan Dali Three Pagodas in Chongshen Monastery
    Dali Three Pagodas in Chongshen Monastery

  7. AM: After breakfast, you will board the car and then head to Lijiang. The journey usually lasts 3-4 hours. Along the road, you will stop by Bai Minority Traditional Houses in Xizhou. Follow your guide to explore the distinctive dwellings with typical minority culture, and you may also have a chance to see the process of local food making, which is called Baba as the specialty. Later on you will stop by a former mansion of Yan’s Family, where you can know the layout of Chinese courtyard of Bai minority style, and appreciate its wood sculpture as well as the architectural ornament. Stop by Zhoucheng to explore the ancient handcraft of tie-dying. You will have the chance to enter the workshop to learn the procedure of the skill, and try to do it personally on your willingness.

    Noon: Lunch at local restaurant.

    PM: When you arrive in Lijiang, the guide will then lead you to appreciate the charm of Lijiang Ancient Town. It is characterized by a culture that fully embodies the harmony and integration of man and nature. The road is paved with breccia, which adds a sense of nostalgia and vintage here. When it comes night, the colorful lights make the town glitter and much more attractive. Finally the guide will help you check in the hotel.

    Accommodation: Hotel booked by us

    Yunnan Lijiang Ancient Town
    Lijiang Ancient Town

  8. AM: Today is arranged to visit the Baisha Village first. It is the original settlement of Naxi people in Lijiang dam. The village still remains the antique style, which is quiet and simple. There’s a highlight here, that is famous Baisha Mural. The painting of Baisha mural lasts for more than 300 years from the beginning of Ming dynasty to the Qing dynasty, vividly depicting the local lifestyle and religious impressions. In addition, you will also pay a visit to local Naxi family to know deeper about local culture of inhabitants.

    Noon: Lunch at local restaurant.

    PM: Later on, move to Former Residence of Dr. Joseph Rock in Yuhu village, which locates at the foot of Jade Dragon Snow Mountain. Subsequently, explore the Black Dragon Pool Park, which is the landmark scenic spot of Lijiang and the site of researching Dongba culture. You will also be led to Dongba Museum, learning some history of Naxi minority people.

    Accommodation: Hotel booked by us

    Baisha Ancient Town

  9. AM: In the morning you will be transferred to Shangri-La for about 4-5 hours. Before reaching your destination, you will see the First Bend of the Yangtze River on the way. The site got its name by the special form of a sudden V-like bend of the stream of the Yangtze River. The Stone Drum Town is less visited but keeps its original visage, in which still holds the custom of Market Day. The observation deck of First Bend of the Yangtze River is also set in the town.

    Noon: Lunch at local restaurant.

    PM: Today’s last station is Tiger Leaping Gorge. With the reputation of danger, the place holds precipice that is not only deep, but also very narrow. The situation of rivers here also changes rapidly, which crazily gallops forward. The landscape of Tiger Leaping Gorge constitutes a rare miracle in the world.

    In the end, you will check in the hotel in Shangri-La.

    Accommodation: Hotel booked by us

    Tiger Leaping Gorge in Shangri-La, Yunnan
    Tiger Leaping Gorge in Shangri-La

  10. AM: After breakfast, meet your guide at hotel lobby and then move to Songzanlin Temple. It is a large Tibetan Buddhist temple in Yunnan, quite similar to the Potala Palace in Lhasa looking from afar. The temple also collects lots of religious artifacts and precious cultural relics.

    Noon: Lunch at local restaurant.

    PM: Finishing your lunch, you will come to Potatso National Park, which is seen as a natural botanical garden. The climate in the park is wet and pleasant, thus you can often see it wreathed in mist, or shrouded in the sea of clouds. The Mirror-like alpine lakes, meadows with beautiful water and grass, wetlands with blooming flowers, primeval forest frequented by birds and beasts, all make this place totally a paradise.

    Before the end of today’s tour, you will visit a local Tibetan family to fully immersed in the unique cultural atmosphere. You can try traditional Tibetan food, and never miss the dance and music show performed by real Tibetan folks.

    Accommodation: Hotel booked by us

    Yunnan Songzanlin Monastery
    Songzanlin Monastery

  11. AM: You will check out the hotel today, and then visit the last station of this tour – the Old Town of Dukezong. Built in the Tang dynasty, Dukezong is a Tibetan pronunciation meaning “moonlight city” and “castle built on stone”. The layout of the town is like eight petals of a lotus, and the center is the moonlight square. Turning the huge prayer tube, you can feel the Tibetan piety in the sound of chanting.

    Afterwards, the guide will see you off at the airport for your departure. Our 11 days Yunnan cultural tour ends here.

    Yunnan Shangri-La Dukezong Ancient Town
    Shangri-La Dukezong Ancient Town


Price includes

  • Second-class bullet train tickets occurred in itinerary
  • Transfer in air-conditioned vehicle with driver
  • English speaking guide
  • Admission fees to listed tourism sites
  • Meals listed in itinerary
  • Hotels with breakfast
  • Fuel surcharge, parking fee

Price excludes

  • Personal expense
  • Optional activities
  • Gratuities (recommended)
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