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14 Days Southwest China Essence Tour         Price from: US$ 1912         |         or download the order form and Credit Card Authorization
Summary : This custom itinerary is designed to offer you the city of Guilin which is regarded as the best of natural scenery and the unique Yunnan Province with the most diverse minority custom. Spend a day exploring the fabulous Li River and then another to the famous rice terraces and Zhuang and Yao minority villages in Longsheng beyond Guilin. Our Yunnan trip is a wonderful combination of scenery and ethnic culture. The legendary Kingdom of Shangri-La with Tibetan culture, one of the world’s cultural heritages-Lijiang Old Town with Naxi culture and scenic Dali with the beautiful stories of Bai people. Spectacular landscapes and exotic ethnic minority tribes await you as you step back into the Southwest part of China.

Day 1

Arrival Guangzhou
Arrive in Guangzhou, you will be met at the airport & transferred to your hotel. Free at leisure for the rest of the day.
Meals: No meal
Accommodation: In Guangzhou

Guangzhou is a civilized ancient city with a history of more than 2200 years, the same age as the ancient city of Rome in Italy. It was also the earliest trade port in China that opened to the world and was the starting port of the “silk road” on the sea since the Han and Tang Dynasties. The city is now the capital of Guangdong province, you can see there ultra-modern hotels and office blocks rub shoulders with traditional temples, wet markets and historic buildings.
 

Day 2

Guangzhou    Guilin
Today, you will take a half day city tour of Dr. Sun Yat-sen’s Memorial Hall, Temple of Chen Family, Temple of the Six Banyan Trees, then in the late afternoon, be transferred to the airport for your short flight to Guilin.
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch
Accommodation: In Guangzhou

Dr. Sun Yat-sen’s Memorial Hall is one of the most important historic buildings in Canton. It is built to honor Dr. Sun Yat-sen, the great architect of Chinese revolution. The hall was constructed between 1929 and 1931, on the site of the former Presidential Palace.

Temple of Chen FamilyTemple of Chen Family is one of the most culturally unique complexes in Southern China. Built in the 1890s, the complex is comprised of 19 buildings which are known for great decorations, woodcarvings, and iron castings and so on.

With the famous Thousand-Buddha Pagoda standing in the temple, the Temple of the Six Banyan Trees (Liurong si) enshrines three Buddhist statuses in its Grand Hall, which were cast in the Qing Dynasty in 1663. In the Sixth Ancestor Hall, visitors can find a copper statue of Huineng, the sixth founder of a sect of Buddhism.  

Guilin is world-famous for its serene landscape, Karst limestone formations, mist-covered hills and bamboo groves. It is home to more than ten ethnic groups, including Han, Zhuang, Miao, Yao, Hui and Dong. On the way from the airport to your hotel, you will see dozens of pretty hills everywhere in the city of Guilin. It is a city of hills and green trees and boasts one of the most photographed areas of China.
 

Day 3

Guilin      Yangshuo    Guilin
Depart from hotel in the morning, you will be transferred to the Pier for the Li River Cruise (about 4 hours and the lunch will be served on board). Savor the fairy-tale scenery when sail down the meandering river to Yangshuo. Be transferred back to Guilin in the late afternoon. Optional Banquet of Rice Noodle and Longji Minority Show are available tonight.
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch
Accommodation: In Guilin
 
Li River CruiseA double-decker river boat is waiting for you to have a Li River Cruise. The landscape from Guilin to Yangshuo is truly a masterpiece of nature. The crystal waters, straight-out-of-a-painting mountains, peaceful farm fields, hard-working-but- ever-smiling fishermen and wandering water buffaloes inspire poetic musings of Guilin’s charming life. Under the blue sky, your river boat transports you in an unending daydream. 

Guilin Rice Noodle is the most popular snack in Guilin. If you want to know Guilin’s culture deeply, it’s a recommended choice for you to taste the Banquet of Rice Noodle as your optional dinner. The thing that sets one dish apart from another is the soup, which is made of pork, steak, Lo Han Kuo, and other seasonings. Depending on different kinds of ingredients used in the soup, rice noodles can be divided into vegetable, three-fresh, original soup, spicy and sour, beef, and horse meat ones.

Tonight, after the dinner, how about choose the Longji Minority Show as your optional night show? Taking Longji Terraced Rice Paddies as the cultural background, this grand show of minority nationality songs and dances is made with all great efforts. Combined harmoniously with the minority folk lifestyle and customs from the Miao, Yao, Dong and Zhuang nationalities, the show will be all-side unfolded before your eyes.
 

Day 4

Guilin    Longsheng
Depart from hotel in the morning, you will take about 2.5hours driving to Longsheng and visit the marvelous Longji Rice Terrace and Ping’an Zhuang Village. Stay overnight at Longsheng.
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Accommodation: In Longsheng
 
Longji Rice Terrace Longji Rice Terraces are reached from Guilin by mountain roads amid spectacular scenery.  With a history of more than 700 years, the area is still being used for growing premium quality rice by Yao and Zhuang villagers. The rice terraces are built into the hillsides and look like great steps cut into the slopes as they wind around the mountainsides. This ingenious construction makes best use of the scarce arable land and water resources in the mountainous area.

The Rice Terraces are much prettier after the rain, as the morning fog is clearing or while rice is being harvested. If you like to paint or photograph dramatic, beautiful landscapes, this would be a superb destination in which to practice your art; or come here anyway just to look, gaze in awe, and take it all in; it’s a Guilin must-see!

Ping’an is a Zhuang minority village high up in the mountains at Longji. The village is only accessible by foot, and from across the valley, the visitor has a first impression of entering another land as the buildings, clustered around the hillside, are all two story wooden structures resembling a European Alpine village. This is the traditional Zhuang style house and among them there are excellent guest houses that can cater to all your practical needs. Ping’an is surrounded by beautiful terraced rice fields. From a distance, the terraces look like contour lines on a topographical map, texturing the ridges, mountainsides and valleys.  It is a charming environment that will have the most demanding photographer constantly busy and wearing a slightly demented grin.
 

Day 5

Longsheng    Guilin
In the morning, you will drive back to Guilin from. Then visit Reed Flute Cave and Elephant Trunk Hill which is regarded as the symbol of Guilin.
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch
Accommodation: In Guilin
 
Elephant Trunk Hill Reed Flute Cave is named for the special reeds, used for making flute instruments that grow near the cave entrance. The caves are a feast for the eyes. The natural beauty of a profusion of stalactites and stalagmites, stele, stone pillars, stone curtains and stone flowers creating an infinite variety of extraordinary scenes, creatively illuminated, is bound to evoke gasps of admiration. It is fitting then, that Reed Flute Cave is commonly praised as Nature’s Grand Art Palace.

Elephant Trunk Hill, or Xiangbishan, is the symbol of Guilin. Observed from a distance, you’ll see an elephant-like form standing majestically at the confluence of the Li and Yang Rivers, with its trunk arching into the clear waters, a fantasy elephant eternally quenching a gargantuan thirst; lifelike in shape and energetic in posture.
 

Day 6

Guilin    Kunming
Enjoy your own exploration in the morning then, be transferred to the airport for the fight to Kunming. Free at leisure for the rest of the day.
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch
Accommodation: In Kunming
 
Kunming is the capital city of Yunnan in southwest China.  Located in the middle of the Yunnan-Guizhou Plateau just north of the Tropic of Cancer, at an altitude of 1,900 meters above the sea level, Kunming enjoys a year-round temperate climate and is often called the ’Spring City’.


Day 7

Kunming    Dali
In the morning, take a short flight to Dali, the ancient political, economic and cultural center of Yunnan. On arrival, you will visit Dali Ancient Town and Three Pagodas, the symbol of the history of Dali.
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Accommodation: In Dali

Dali Ancient TownDali is located on a fertile plateau between the Cangshan Mountains to the West and Erhai Lake to the East. It has traditionally been settled by the Bai and Yi minorities. Dali is the ancient capital of both the Bai kingdom Nanzhao, which flourished in the area during the 8th and 9th centuries, and the Kingdom of Dali, which reigned from 937-1253, and today’s Dali City was established in 1983.

Dali Ancient Town is 13km (8 miles) away from Dali City. The city’s history can be traced back to the early Ming Dynasty (1368-1644). According to ancient literature, the City was a gateway to the ancient Silk Road in Southwestern China. Because of its history and wealth, Dali Ancient city was surrounded by the wall which is over 6km in length, 7.5 meters high and 6 meters thick. In 1982, the northern and southern city wall towers were rebuilt to offer visitors a glimpse into the ancient wall’s grandeur. The architecture of Dali Ancient City is in the traditional Bai ethnic style and gives the city a very distinct feel. Dali Ancient City is well known for its traditional arts and crafts. It is particularly famous for its marble and hand woven handicrafts.

With a history over 1,800 years, the Three Pagodas is the symbol of Dali, and the witness of the development of Buddhism in the area. The Three Pagodas are at the East foot of the tenth peak of Cangshan Mountains and face the West shore of the Erhai Lake of the ancient Dali Town. They are an ensemble of three independent pagodas arranged on the corners of an equilateral triangle, with the main pagoda 69 meters in height. Three Pagodas together with Zhaozhou Bridge in Hebei Province and Great Wild Goose Pagoda in Xian are known as the three curiosities of Chinese ancient architecture.
 

Day 8

Dali
After breakfast, you will be transferred to the pier and take an Erhai Cruise for about 4hours wonderful experience. In the afternoon, you can take a leisure visit to Xizhou Bai’s Houses (Yan’s Courtyard included) where you can see what the Bai people’s houses like.
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch
Accommodation: In Dali

Erhai Cruise Erhai Lake is the second largest lake in Yunnan after Dianchi Lake, and one of the seven biggest fresh water lakes in China. On sunny days, the crystal water of the lake and the snow mantled Cangshan Mountain create a beautiful scene described as silver Cangshan and jade Erhai. The surrounding isles, temples and villages of Erhai Lake are also worth visiting. The Golden Shuttle Island and the nearby fishing community of Bai people with Bai’s culture and lifestyle are charming attractions. You can also enjoy the Three Courses Tea of Bai people on the isles.

You will regret it if you miss Xizhou Bai’s Houses 18km north of Dali. Green mountains, winding creeks and fertile land make life here lyrical and carefree. The history of Xizhou dates back to the Sui Dynasty (581-618AD). People nowadays regard Xizhou as a town famous for the Bai culture. The old houses and streets are well preserved and visitors may still find traces of past glory. The houses of are characterized by a traditional Chinese rectangular courtyard with a screen wall facing the gate. On the screen wall usually are four Chinese characters reading ’Qingbai Shijia’ (innocent family) or ’Ziqi Donglai’ (Auspicious air comes from the East). Around them are landscape paintings and decorations with colors in profusion. The doors and windows are full of grills with auspicious paintings.
 

Day 9

Dali    Lijiang
In the morning, take 4hours driving to Lijiang, the famous ancient town in southwest China, and enjoy a leisure visit around Lijiang Ancient Town that to walk down the cobblestone streets over 700 years and feel the Naxi way of life which changed little over time.
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Accommodation: In Lijiang

Lijiang Ancient Town Lijiang Ancient Town is well-preserved and known as a centre for the Naxi people’s brilliant culture. With a history of more than 800 years, the town was built in the interval as the Song Dynasty changed to the Yuan Dynasty, and occupies an area of 3.8 square kilometers. It is built along the lie of mountains and the flow of rivers with the ancient water-supply system which is still in use today, providing a precious example for research on ancient architecture. As a result of selective adoption of ideas from other cultures by the Naxi group, the buildings in town incorporate the best of the architectural styles of Han, Bai and Tibetan, developed into the unique Naxi style. The layout of the town is free and flexible, the houses are close and diverse and the lanes are narrow and meandering. Along both sides of the lanes, there are shops selling superb handicrafts. Here you also have the chance to trace the ancient Tea-Horse Road.
 

Day 10

Lijiang
In the morning, you will drive about half an hour to visit Jade Dragon Snow Mountain (cable car and green vans available in the scenic area). After lunch, visit Yufeng Temple and Baisha Mural in the ancient capital of Naxi Kingdom in Baisha village.
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch
Accommodation: In Lijiang

Jade Dragon Sown Mountain Jade Dragon Snow Mountain nestles near Lijiang. It is the southernmost glacier in the Northern Hemisphere, consisting of 13 peaks with the highest one, Shanzidou, at an altitude of 5,600 meters. Looking from the town, the mountain resembles a jade dragon laying in the clouds, hence the name. The view of the massif from the gardens at the Black Dragon Pool in Lijiang is noted as one of China’s finest views.

Built in 1756, Yufeng Temple is located at the southern foot of the Jade Dragon Snow Mountain, 13km from Lijiang. The temple is surrounded by a verdant forest and river with the snow mountain at its back. It displays a harmonious mix of architectural styles of Han Buddhism, Tibetan Buddhism, Taoism and local Naxi Dongba Religion. It is witness to the peaceful coexistence of multinational cultures and religions.  It still plays an important role in local residents’ religious life.

Baisha Mural is located at Baisha Villages, 10km north of Lijiang. Although the traditional houses do not look impressive, this was the cradle of the Naxi culture and ancient capital of the Naxi Kingdom. The valuable murals are protected inside Dabaoji Palace and the colored glaze temples. The originality and figures within the murals reflect the different religious cultures and artistic forms of Buddhism, Lamaism, Taoism and local Naxi Dongba religion’s development into Naxi School. Each painting includes at least one hundred portraits, which are not only Buddha, but also ordinary people such as bureaucrats, farmers, citizens and even criminals. Many of the scenes and subjects are drawn from people’s daily life showing fishing, riding horses, weaving, dancing and casting iron. 
 

Day 11

Lijiang    Shangri-la
In the morning, drive another 4hours (about 178km) to Shangri-La, a place with stunning scenery, the azure sky and the hospitality of unsophisticated people. You will take a short visit to Dukezong Ancient Town upon arrival.
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Accommodation: In Shangri-la

Dukezong Ancient Town Shangri-la is a primarily Tibetan county in northwestern Yunnan and the capital of Diqing Tibetan Autonomous Prefecture. The county was formerly called Zhongdian but in 2001 was renamed after the fictional land of Shangri-La, from the James Hilton novel Lost Horizon. With many miles of beautiful vistas to discover, this region offers unique hiking and horse trekking opportunities to those who make the journey down to Northern Yunnan. At an altitude of 3,200 meters, Shangri-La is the start point of the Tibetan world in Northern Yunnan. The small town once was the frontier trading post on the doorstep of Tibet.

Dukezong Ancient Town is located at the southeast corner of Shangri-la, meaning the town of moonlight in Tibetan language. Dukezong was built against the mountain according to the Utopia in Buddhism. With a history more than 1,329 years, its bumpy roads paved by large stones have so many stories waiting to be uncovered.
 

Day 12

Shangri-la
Today, get up early, you will first take a minutes driving to visit Songzanlin Lamasery, the largest Tibetan Buddhist monastery in Yunnan, then visit Potatso National Park (green vans available in scenic area) after lunch.
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch
Accommodation: In Shangri-la

Songzanlin LamaseryNot far from Shangri-la, Songzanlin Lamasery is the largest Tibetan Buddhist lamasery in Yunnan, and one of the 13 large lamaseries in the joint area of Tibet, Yunnan and Sichuan. Constructed in 1679, it took about three years to complete. Built against the mountain with a magnificent appearance, Songzanlin is a faithful imitation of the Potala Palace in Lhasa Tibet. The most famous treasures in the lamasery are the eight gold-covered sculptures of Sakyamuni, bronze sculptures, the Ganzur scriptures hand-written in liquid gold, gold lamps, and many exquisite gilded silver incense burners.

Potaso National Park is located 22km away from Shangri-la, about half an hour’s driving. As China’s first national park, it mainly consists of two lakes- Shudu and Bita, the distance between takes about half an hour’s driving by green van.
 

Day 13

Shangri-la    Kunming
Fly back to Kunming in the morning, you will then have chance to visit Western Hill, Dragon Gate and the Village of Ethnic Culture.
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch
Accommodation: In Kunming

Village of Ethnic CultureWestern Hills lies in the Biji Mountain chain to the west of Kunming. It is visible from the eastern or northern banks of Dianchi Lake. Clouds and mist often hide the mountain sides, with their giant firs and pines and many ancient temples. The Dragon Gate in the Western Hills is close to the west shore of the Dianchi Lake. The elevation of the Dragon Gate is over 2,300 meters, 300 meters higher than the water surface of the Dianchi Lake. It consists of the Sanqing Temple and the Dragon Gate Grotto which was accomplished through 72 years of hard work (1781-1853). The 3 March is a festive time in the Western Hills, when it is considered the best time for Kunming residents to climb the mountains and look into the distance, to admire the spring flowers and appreciate the feeling of new life.

Located by the Dianchi Lake and at the foot of the Western Hill, the Village of Ethnic Culture is a major part of Kunming Dianchi National Tourist and Holiday Zone. Opened to the public on February 18, 1992, the community is 8 km away from the city of Kunming proper and covers an area of 1,340 mus.
 

Day 14

Kunming    Guangzhou, Departure
Free at leisure until be transferred to the airport for your flight to Guangzhou.
Meals: Breakfast

Service Ends

Full price of this tour (per person in US$):
JAN, FEB, DEC MAR, JUN, JUL, AUG APR, MAY, SEP, OCT, NOV
Group Size Using Standard Hotel
★★★
Using First Class Hotel
★★★★
Using Deluxe Hotel
★★★★★
Double
Occupancy
Sole
Occupancy
Double
Occupancy
Sole
Occupancy
Double
Occupancy
Sole
Occupancy
1 person   4318   4587   5293
2-5 persons 2851 3309 2986 3577 3339 4284
6-9 persons 2285 2742 2419 3011 2772 3717
10 persons & above 1912 2299 1990 2453 2338 3151
Group Size Using Standard Hotel
★★★
Using First Class Hotel
★★★★
Using Deluxe Hotel
★★★★★
Double
Occupancy
Sole
Occupancy
Double
Occupancy
Sole
Occupancy
Double
Occupancy
Sole
Occupancy
1 person   4436   4684   5493
2-5 persons 2949 3426 3072 3674 3477 4484
6-9 persons 2382 2860 2507 3109 2911 3918
10 persons & above 2014 2427 2085 2568 2476 3351
Group Size Using Standard Hotel
★★★
Using First Class Hotel
★★★★
Using Deluxe Hotel
★★★★★
Double
Occupancy
Sole
Occupancy
Double
Occupancy
Sole
Occupancy
Double
Occupancy
Sole
Occupancy
1 person   4535   4881   5694
2-5 persons 3036 3525 3209 3871 3615 4684
6-9 persons 2470 2959 2643 3305 3050 4118
10 persons & above 2102 2526 2218 2758 2600 3522
Remarks:
1. Shanghai Limousine & Travel reserves the right to adjust the prices of any portion of the tour due to the reasons beyond our control without prior notice.
2.All quotation is in US dollar (per person), and based on the exchange rate between CNY and USD in effect at the time of publishing. It is subject to change.
3.The quotation on our website is also subject to change during some Chinese festivals, national holidays, fairs or events, when hotels may levy higher rates which will be advised on a case by case basis.
4.The availabilities of rooms, flights and etc. are subject to change until the actual booking is been made.
5.Specific requests such as adjacent or connecting rooms, bedding requests, smoking or non-smoking rooms and special dietary needs should be subjected to reconfirm upon your arrival. We would put on your request to the Hotel.
 
Price includes:
1. Airport/railway station welcome and private transfers between airports/railway stations, hotels and sightseeing spots. Separate arrivals and departures will incur extra charges.
2. Domestic airfare of economic class or train ticket(s) as mentioned in the itinerary. Airport construction fee and fuel surcharge are included.
3. Accommodation (if include Yangtze cruiser) based on two adults sharing one standard twin-bed room (cabin); solo travelers or those who want to occupy one twin-bed room/cabin of their own are required to pay additional charge of single supplement rate (S.SUPP in above price table). A single room (cabin) is subject to availability based on prior request at an additional cost; if the recommended hotel is not available, it will be substituted by a similar one.
4. Driver and English-speaking guide service on normal sightseeing activities noted in the itinerary.
5. All entrance fees to scenic spots as shown in the itinerary. The final arrangement will be determined by local tour guides based on the local circumstances which are beyond the control of Shanghai Limousine &Travel. SLT will adhere to the original itinerary as accurately as possible.
6. Travel insurance.
7. Government taxes.
 
Price excludes:
1.Round way International airfare or train tickets, unless otherwise noted.
2.Visa fee, passport application or renewal fee.
3.Tips for guides, escort, drives, bellman, etc.
4.Personal expenses such as excess luggage fees, laundry, postage, communications and beverages.
5.Optional meals and shows mentioned in the itinerary, which will be added up if the clients desire to take the activities.
6.Any extra cost caused by changes of natural disasters, fires, weather, governmental and local authority orders, political change, strikes, war, riots, quarantine, custom regulations, damages or injury caused by accident beyond the control of Shanghai Limousine &Travel and that has incurred due to the tourist action violating the laws.
7.Any items not specified in the plan.

    You can also download the order form and Credit Card Authorization for your reservation.

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