Highlights

Looking for a real escape from the urban sprawl? Take the 7 days tour traveling across Dali, the heartland of Bai nationality, and venture to the unexplored Yunnan, where you can see an “old world”, explore the remote countryside, experience primitive life, savor different delicacies, and find pure tranquility of the outdoors.

Top things to do:

  • Enjoy an in-depth Dali tour in one week to discover the unexpected hidden gems – free of crowds and noise;
  • Stay at the timeless ancient towns and villages on the great Tea-horse Trading Route, including Weishan, Nuodeng, and Shaxi, – they are even more peaceful than Dali Old Town;
  • Admire some of China’s best preserved ancient architectures, including traditional dwellings, temples, pagodas, memorial archways, theatrical stage, etc.
  • Experience the spectacular grotto art of Yunnan, as well as its tea and gastronomic culture.
  • Embrace the nature with active outdoor activities including biking, cruising, hiking and Tai Chi practice;
  • Travel Style: private tour, original, culture, nature, adventure

    Best Time to Travel: All year round

    Destinations: Dali, Weishan, Yunlong, Nuodeng, Shaxi, Jianchuan

    Day

    Meals Included: No Meals

    On arrival in China and make your connection flight to Dali. Your private local guide and driver of Yunnan Discovery will warmly welcome you at the Dali Airport. Transfer to your hotel in Dali Old Town. Dali’s mild climate and natural environment will make you feel comfortable and relaxed.

    After a brief rest at the hotel, transfer to visit the imposing Three Pagodas of Chong Sheng Temple, one of the most famous and most beautiful pagodas in China. The iconic structure of Dali, Chong Sheng Temple with its three pagodas was the symbol of Ancient Dali Kingdom. Besides, it is a treasure house of Buddhist culture and art with a rich collection of Buddhist statues, classics and other relics. Your guide can also lead you to the best shooting locations of the pagodas.

    Drive back to the Old Town of Dali initially built in 1382. As the political, cultural and economic center of Yunnan for centuries of years during Tang and Song Dynasty, it is still home to many historic sites and architectures. Stroll on the ancient cobbled streets to experience Dali’s historical atmosphere and the Bai people’s folklores.

    >> There are direct flights to Dali from Kunming, Shanghai, Beijing, Chengdu, Chongqing, Hangzhou, Guangzhou, Changsha and some other China cities.

    Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch

    Wake up from a sound sleep and have a tasty breakfast at hotel. Transfer to the foot of Cangshan Mountain, a mighty geological park. Take a cableway ride up to the Jade Belt Road (at 2600km) at the halfway of Cangshan Mountain and begin 2 to 3 hours hiking on the stone-paved mountain paths. Go deep into the forest, along the streams and see the Old Town of Dali from the air.

    In the afternoon, bike Erhai Lake along the West Ring Road (for about 2 hours) – it is one of the best ways to discover the beauty of Erhai Lake and also the countryside of Dali. Bike freely on the paths of crisscrossed farmlands, into the idyllic rural areas, and find pristine fishing villages.

    Then enjoy a relaxing boat cruise on the crystal Erhai Lake, and visit a tiny island named Jinsuo Island in the middle of the lake to see how the fishing villagers live, and enjoy the peaceful moments at this isolated island.

    Transfer back to the hotel to enjoy the night life of Dali Old Town.

    Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

    Drive for 1 hour from Dali to Weishan, a famous historical city in China and once a bustling hub on the Ancient Tea Horse Road. The old town of Weishan, dating to Yuan Dynasty, was the capital of ancient Nanzhao (Dali) Kingdom, and basically retains its look over 600 years ago. Here you can see some of China's best-preserved Ming and Qing Dynasty architecture complex.

    Pay a visit to a Muslim village called Donglianhua (East Lotus) to appreciate its special and beautiful architecture, including 5 watchtowers and 22 courtyards that were built by the ancient horse caravans.

    Discover the gastronomic delights of Weishan - observe the unique process of making "one noodle soup", a traditional Weishan food. It has a very humble name, though, this dish requires fine workmanship. Does it make your mouth water? Then devour your own bowl of "one noodle soup" for lunch. If you have a big appetite, there is another masterpiece of Weishan food named as Parou ersi (a kind of rice noodle) for you to savor.

    In the afternoon, enjoy a light hike on the majestic Weibaoshan Mountain, a national forest park dotted with Taoist and Buddhist temples. Visit a time-honored Taoist monastery and learn from a Taoist master about the philosophy of Taoism during drinking and then find your inner Zen with meditation or a set of Taichi moves.

    Return to Dali and have a good rest.

    Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

    Today we will go to explore another wonderful place - Yunlong, where the nature and culture combine perfectly. Drive for 3 hours from Dali to Yunlong County Town and have a simple, local flavor lunch. Then drive for another 30 minutes to the timeless Nuodeng village, a beautiful, primitive village built against a mountainside embraced by lush vegetation.

    With a history of over a thousand years, Nuodeng is the one of the oldest villages in Yunnan. The well-arranged residential houses, enormous memorial archways, beautiful temples, shrines and even the ancient banyan trees in Nuodeng have untouched since Ming and Qing Dynasties. Hence it is praised as “the museum of ancient village architectures”.

    Walk up and down the stone-paved lanes to meet the unsophisticated local Bai villagers, experience the history and traditions, and unwind in the idyllic land.

    Savor local dishes, especially the famous Nuodeng ham, for dinner in Nuodeng village. Stayovernight in the Yunlong County Town or in Nuodeng village.

    Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch

    This morning your guide will lead you to a viewing deck to overlook the world’s biggest Taichi diagram, shaped naturally by the river bend. A small village connecting with farmlands is then divided into two parts, located at the Yin and Yang of Taichi diagram. According to the principles of Chinese Feng Shui theory, this village of Taichi diagram is likely to bring local farmers good fortune.

    Thereafter, visit the beautiful lake of Tianchi (Heavenly Lake) hidden in the dense forests. It is a national nature reserve, unknown to the tourists, though, it features intoxicating, untouched natural scenery and is an ideal home for wildlife.

    After lunch, drive for 4 hours to Shaxi Old Town. You can see a lot of ancient bridges over the rivers along the way. Centuries of years ago, the Tea-horse Trading Route prospered Shaxi, but today it is a humble, forgotten city. Explore Shaxi Old Town by yourself, to discover the time-honored architectures.

    Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch

    Enjoy a delightful morning to walk through Sideng Sifang Street - the town center where the famous Xingjiao Temple and the beautiful ancient theatrical stage are located. And visit the Shaxi Market if you happen to travel in Shaxi on Friday. The market is one of the remnants of Tea-horse trading route period. Various kinds of goods are for sale, fruits, mushroom, herbal medicine, traditional hand-made snacks…

    After that, transfer to visit Shibaoshan Mountain, a treasure house of Jianchuan grotto art. Shibaoshan itself is a magical land with a concentration of Danxia red sandstone formations. Besides, it is praised as the “Dunhuang in Southwest China” because of the ancient grottoes and the cliffside Buddhist statues.

    Visit the 800-year-old Baoxiang Temple, constructed surprisingly on a steep rocky cliff, thus known as the ‘Hanging Temple’ in Yunnan. And appreciate the well-preserved carved grottoes of Shizhongshan. They are some of the best examples of Chinese Buddhist grottoes art and precious cultural relics of Bai nationalities.

    It takes about 2 hours to transfer from Shibaoshan to Xizhou Ancient Town, another importantsettlement for Bai people, where they have built and preserved the finest Bai nationality dwellings. Savor the Three-course Tea, to experience the traditional hospitality etiquette and tea culture of Dali. Glimpse local people’s way of living on a visit of a Xizhou wet market.

    Get back to your hotel in Dali and enjoy free time at the evening.

    Meals Included: Breakfast

    A private transfer with guide and driver will be arranged to take you from hotel to the airport. Say goodbye and fly to your next destination.

    What's included

    • One-on-one travel counseling service with fully tailor-made itinerary
    • Private English-speaking guide, native-born or with years of local life experience
    • Reservations of domestic flights and trains as listed on your itinerary
    • Private driver, with comfortable, air-conditioned vehicle
    • Entry tickets to all attractions on your itinerary
    • Private transfers to airport/hotels/attractions
    • Handpicked accommodations to meet your needs, with daily breakfast
    • Lunch and dinner arranged at local restaurants, for taste of Yunnan
    • International flight tickets or train tickets
    • China Visa (but we can send you the invitation letter to help you apply China visa)
    • Tips for guides, escort, drives, bellman
    • Personal expenses

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