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China. Charming villages, mountains, authentic people and tea

14 +2 to transfer

Tour description

Full immersion in the life and culture of the most vivid national minorities of southern China! Picturesque mountains, rice terraces, and the most beautiful places of the Middle Kingdom on the Li river. 

  • Walk on the endless rice terraces in Longshen and get acquainted with the unusual lifestyle of the Yao people. 
  • Ride bamboo boats on the Li river, enjoying views of the most beautiful places in all of China! 
  • Explore Lijiang and Dali - cozy cities on the Ancient Tea Road. 
  • Observe authentic monastic life in a remote monastery in the mountains where there are no tourists. 
  • Discover one of the biggest tea markets in the world and take part in the tea ceremony.

Tour departures

The price of the tour includes

Domestic flight from Kunming to Beijing; All transportation, including trains, buses, city transport and taxis; Accommodation throughout the trip; Entrance tickets to all attractions along the route; Professional guiding services.

What is NOT included

Flight to Gulin and from Kunming back home. (Let us know if you need help finding the best deals); Food ($15-20 per person per day); Insurance (mandatory); Visa to China.

Tour map

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Tour itinerary

Day 1-2

The town of Xingping, Riding bamboo boats on river Li, Fuli village

We arrive in Guilin and take a bus to the town of Xingping (approximately one and a half hours on the way). We arrive in the most beautiful places in China, and this is a fact! The local landscapes of the karst cliffs between the bends of the Li River have for centuries inspired the most famous poets and artists of the Middle Kingdom. And now they are depicted on the back of a 20 yuan note. 

We ride bamboo boats along the river, enjoying the views. Wander through the surrounding villages, watching the unhurried and very authentic local life. Boys here fish in rice fields flooded with water and graze buffaloes. Yes, the most famous Chinese landscape - a shepherd with a pipe against the mountains can still be seen in these amazing places! 

We leave for the market in the neighboring village of Fuli. Representatives of the brightest peoples of southern China come here from remote villages. Here we will see the most unusual costumes and often authentic goods.

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Day 3-4

Longshen rice terraces

In the morning we go to Longshen by bus (about 3 hours on the way). We check into a hotel. Look around - we are among the famous rice terraces on the slopes of the mountains! The local people of the Yao nationality laid them in the mountains 650 years ago and still grow rice there. We walk on the terraces, and see unusual wooden houses. Here locals bake rice with vegetables and tofu in bamboo, and add vegetable oil and spices to their tea. Yao women never cut their hair and knot them at the top of their heads. 

Next morning we take a bus to Guilin, and then we take the train to Kunming (about 4 hours on the way). We arrive in the evening, and check into a hotel.

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Day 5

Shilin Stone Forest, The city of Kunming, Tea market

In the morning we are going to Shilin Stone Forest. Here in an area of 500 square kilometers there are thousands of sharp stone rocks that resemble trees. We can climb some of them to explore the unusual landscape from above. And the passages between other rocks are so narrow that a person can hardly fit there.

We return to Kunming and head to one of the main tea markets in China. Local tea shops have every kind of tea for every taste, and even hundreds of varieties of tea, the existence of which you did not suspect. Old pu-erh, oolong tea, herbal teas, the freshest green, pink, floral ... And the abundance of tea-ware! We will also see the famous traditional tea ceremony here.

Finally, we will try the famous local noodles. The most famous soup consists of chicken, turkey, cabbage, sprout, green onion and rice noodle. Delicious! In the evening we take the night bus to Lijiang.

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Is this trip for you?

This trip is of easy level of physical activity. It includes long walks in the cities and villages. We will also spend two days walking an easy trek for about 24 kilometers. We will travel by buses and trains (transfers lasting up to 6 hours). Accommodation in double/twin rooms tourist class hotels and guesthouses. All will have their own bathroom with hot water and wi fi internet. One night during the trek we will spend in simple houses.

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