North Yunnan Travel

Get to know the best of Yunnan Province! This tour let you experience the historic Tea Horse Road, the old towns Lijiang, Shanxi, Dali and Shangri-la, little villages at the border to Tibet, through one of the deepest gorges in the world and snow capped mountains. The diversity of the landscape is stunning: experience the wide Tibetan grassland, cactus-lined curvy gorge roads or a ride along the vast Erhai Lake. Drive along the Mekong River to the north and enjoy the breathtaking atmosphere at the holy Kawa Karpo, which is high above 6700 m. Stay also in a farmhouse in a Tibetan family on the banks of the Mekong River to experience this unique culture first hand. On the way back to Dali, we drive along the breathtaking Lugu Lake to the unique culture of the Mosu.

On Request

On Request

10 days / 9 nights

Overnight stays in hotels and guest houses.

You want to change the tour a little bit?
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The Tibetmoto Team …

… took care of everything. Great tour, I definitely would book it again!

Ben D.

The tour …

was really special. Tibetmoto organized it very well. Thanks a lot.

Karla L.

Lovely Tour

The whole family enjoyed the tour. Thank you Tibetmoto.

Heiner H.

10 Days – North Yunnan Travel – Itinerary

Day 1: Arrival in Dali

Our journey begins in the old town of Dali, the former capital of the Nanzhao Kingdom, which was built on the banks of the 42-kilometer Erhai Lake. Airport pickup and transfer to your hotel. Depending on arrival time we have trough Dali old town and visit the 1200 years old Three Pagodas.

Day 2: Dali – Shaxi

We start our tour with a drive along the lake towards Shaxi. Soon we leave the lake shore with the houses of the Bai minority and take the winding road to the side of the Cangshan Mountains, whose peak is over 4000 M. high. Free time to visit the old town of Shaxi. Shaxi is how many other places and villages part of the historic Tee Horse Road and still remembers much of that time, such as the arched stone bridge over the river and the village square with its wooden stage. If you like to, there is the possibility to visit the Shi Bao Mountain which is around 12 kilometer far away. In the old town of Shaxi, right on the historic town square, theres a Boutique hotel where you will spent the night.

Day 3: Shaxi – Shigu – Qizong

After a few hours driving up north we will reach the Yangtze River, which takes a 140 degrees bend in Shigu thousands of miles before it flows into the sea. Before lunch we climb the edge of a small hill to enjoy the view. After that it is possible to take a small boat out onto the river and take a break on one of the small islands. All the way up to our destination, we follow the Yangtze through fertile valleys up north. Once we arrived in Qizong we visit a Tibetan Buddhist temple that was finished only a few years ago and shows how the Buddhism is flourishing again. Here we can relax in the garden or have a cup of tea with the monk.

Day 4: Qizong – Cizong – Jiabe (tibetan Homestay)

Soon after we leave Qizong we reach the Mekong river which is on its way down from the Himalayan heights to South East Asia. We follow this wild river for many kilometers today until we reach in the upper Mekong region – only a few kilometers away from the actual Tibetan border – a small Tibetan village. We will be guests in a traditional Tibetan farm house and share meals together with the family. A real highlight of the entire trip. The green village is perched between mountains and a welcome contrast to the spectacular but rough Tibetan landscape and the wild Mekong river. The time in the village will give you the possibility of an unmasked insight into Tibetan culture and village life. The farm was built in traditional architectural style and has a traditional spacious living room with Tibetan wood carvings and a ceremonial prayer room. From the flat roof terrace you can see the pek of Mt. Kawa Karpo (6.774m), one of Tibet´s most holy mountains.

Day 5: Jiabe – Kawa Karpo – Shangri-la

From Jiabe we follow a side valley to Deqin and Feilaisi, the flying temple which serves a view platform for holy Mt. Kawa Karpo (6774 meter high). We are now already on 3.400m. Before decending to Shangri-la we will have to cross mighty Baima pass (4.300m) which offers great views on Baima Snow Mt. and high altitude yak pastures. In Benzilan we visit another great Buddhist monastery of the area. Here we encounter the Mekong again – now wide and peaceful. We cross Tibetan grassland scattered with yak herdes and reach Shangri-la where we visit the old town, the largest prayer wheel in the world and the largest Tibetan monastery of southern China: Tsumtsaling.

Day 6: Shangri-la – Tiger Leaping Gorges

After breakfast we drive along the old road to the 3700 M. high mountain pass that demarcated the plateau of Shangri-la over centuries. The little busy road leads through the villages of the Naxi Lisu and isn’t straight for more than 100 meters. On this windy road it goes to the White Water Terraces (Baishuitai), the birthplace of the endangered threatened Dongba religion. Here we will have lunch, put the bike aside and visit the sacred source of Dongba. Two hours later we see from the top down to the Tiger Leaping Gorge, which opens up like a giant crack in the valley. The road through the gorge offers fantastic views of the Yangtze River and into one of the deepest canyons in the world. It also offers spectacular views of the Jade Dragon Snow Mountains, a massive of about 5000 M. height. We will spend the night in a guest house, overlooking the gorge.

Day 7: Tiger Leaping Gorge – Baisha

The drive to Baisha is very short (about 1.5 hours), so there are different possibilities. 1. A three hour hike into the canyon and the Tiger Leaping Stone. The walk-rock is in the middle of the river at the narrowest point. 2. Early arrival in the old town of Baisha, 10 kilometers north of Lijiang. Ride to the UNESCO World Heritage Old Town of Lijiang and visit the Black Dragon pools, one of the most famous photographs of China. But before we get there the road takes us back along the Yangtze River, through small villages and past strawberry, tobacco and corn fields.

Day 8: Baisha – Lugu Lake

From Baisha we will follow the wide Yangtze river over several bridges, farmland and small villages to Lugu lake. The alpine clear blue lake is surrounded by pine forest and more than a dozen beaches. Around the lake shore small Buddhist temples can be visited. Lugu is inhabited by the Mosu minority which still nowadays has a matriarchal clan structure. Tonight we stay in Lige, a small peninsula on the lake, where we will stay over night. From here you can take a boat to nearby islands.

Day 9: Lugu Lake – Dali

From Lugu we take the new highway back to Dali and visit the 1200 year old Three Pagodas, Buddhist center of the ancient Nanzhao Kingdom, before we reach the old town.

Day 10: This trip ends in Dali

Free time in Dali and transfer to the Airport.

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Included Services

  • Overnights stays in hotels and guest houses
  • English speaking tour guide
  • Accompanying vehicle for equipment and luggage
  • Meals (Breakfast, lunch), mineral water
  • Help with applying a Chinese visa

Questions & Answers

Tour Concept by RC Hendrik

About RC Hendrik