Yunnan is not likely to spring immediately to mind when selecting a family destination in China, but the unspoiled “Kingdom South of the Clouds” is actually a magical, heavenly place for a family adventure and offer a wide range of family-friendly and kid-friendly activities that cater to both the parents’ and children’s interests. Here are our picks for top things to do in Yunnan with kids.
>> Highly recommended 8 days Yunnan Family Tour
Undisturbed Family Time at the Picturesque Old Towns of Yunnan
There are dozens of ancient towns in Yunnan, among which, the old towns of Lijiang and Dali are the most famous ones and ideal for a family trip, with convenient transport, luxury family hotels and interesting cultural sites. The family can learn something new, encounter different cultures and experience a totally different life here, far away from the busy life and polution of the city, and close to big mountains, clean lakes and starry sky.
Natural & cultural Wonders of Yunnan
Yunnan has five UNESCO-listed world heritages, including Stone Forest (Shilin), Cultural Landscape of Honghe Hani Rice Terraces (Yuanyang Rice Terraces), Three Parallel Rivers of Yunnan Protected Areas, Old Town of Lijiang and the lesser-known Chengjiang Fossil Site – your family travel in Yunnan can be full of cultural and natural discovery.
Tiger Leaping Gorge
Whether you’re planning a Tiger Leaping Gorge hiking tour, or an easy sightseeing trip with toddles, this beautiful gorge is a hit. It is a great chance to be close to pure nature and primitive villages, encounter horse/yak keepers on road, also follow the past trade caravans’ footsteps on Ancient Tea Horse Road and listen to those legendary stories.
Leisurely biking in Dali and Lijiang with children
For your family holiday in Yunnan China, countryside biking is highly recommended. Explore Lijiang and Dali on your own way with well-paved and less-crowded roads, biking through pristine villages, ancient bridges, paddy fields, seasonal vegetable fields… Exercise your feet on two wheels, while at the same time experiencing the true life at China countryside.
To Cruise or Boat on Emerald Lakes
Nestled between mighty mountains, the lakes of Yunnan are “bright pearls” on the highlands and ideal for cruising and boating – definitely a great fun for both adults and kids. Both Erhai Lake cruise and Lugu Lake cruise can include an islet excursion. It sounds like a treasure hunt for the family. If you visit emerald Lashi Lake Wetlands in winter or spring, there’s chance to boat among migratory birds.
Unique Yunnan Flavor Foods, Snacks and Drinks
Forget about the Western foods, for a moment, and enjoy a diverse range of local specialty dishes and snacks. Since you’re traveling with kids, we won’t recommend the insects or anything weird. Still there are a lot special to eat, such as the crossing-bridge rice noodles, dairy fan, bamboo-tube-cooked rice, Yunnan barbecue, all kinds of toufu, tropical fruits, let alone the nutrient rich steamed chicken and mushroom hot pot. We even craft the Yunnan culinary journey for your consideration.
Hands-on Activities with New Learnings
Travel in Yunnan actively with family. We prepare for you a list of hands-on activities to learn new arts and crafts, and obtain new life experience. In Lijiang, you can take embroidery class, in Dali, a cookery lesson and tea picking and making experienced, in Xizhou, a tie-dye lesson, in Shangri-La, pottery-making experience. And we have more activities for you to enjoy.
Cable Car Ride on Jade Dragon Snow Mountain
Your family will love the cable car ride up Jade Dragon Snow Mountain and enjoy a nature adventure in a primitive and pure world with forests, rivers, valleys, lakes, views of glaciers. Impression Lijiang show is highly recommended if traveling to JDSM. There’re also cable cars on Cangshan Mountain and Shika Snow Mountain.
Wildlife in Yunnan’s Natural Reserves
An unspoiled land and a great biological treasure in China, Yunnan has a perfect harmonious natural ecological system and boasts many natural reserves and wetland parks, where your family can have a close contact with various wildlife. Visit the Yunnan black snub-nosed monkey on Baima Snow Mountain. Watch migratory birds in Lashi Lake Wetlands or Wenhai Lake or Napahai Nature Reserve. Find black-necked cranes in Dashanbao Nature Reserve. >> Check out 7 days Lijiang & Shangri-La Discovery to be cloese to the wildlife
Family Visit of Ethnic Minority Tribes
There are over 50 ethnic minority groups in Yunnan, who retains their own unique culture, traditions and customs. A family visit to a minority tribe’ home is part of an authentic adventure in Yunnan and helps the children to understand the historical past of Yunnan and the mysterious parts of Chinese culture. By meeting and chatting with the friendly hosts, you can know more and experience more of the local lifestyle.
Xishuangbanna Tropical Botanical Garden
The best and largest botanical garden in China, its tropic plants are a hit for the family. You can have a peaceful walk through the garden of rainforest and find various species of trees and flowers (including many rare or endangered species).
A Selection of Outdoor Activities to be Close to Nature
Given that you’re planning a Yunnan trip with kids, the outdoor activities we recommend are soft and easy. In addition to the cycling and boating, you can hike on some beautiful trails, climb some easy-to-reach mountains (even with the help of cable cars), enjoy horseback riding (pony is available for children) on the even grasslands, and join the rock-climbing project to climb on wallsof peculiar Danxia landform in Liming.
Family-friendly Accommodations in Yunnan with Children
Travel with kids in Yunnan, you don’t need to make compromise on comfort. There is a wealth of comfortable or luxury hotels/resorts, with family-friendly rooms, facilities, swimming pools and spa & wellness centers. Stay in Yunnan comfortably and even luxuriously with much valuable family time.
>> Contact your tour advisor of Yunnan Discovery for a tailor-made family vacation in Yunnan