Trekking in Yunnan, Dali to Lijiang, China

“Trek and transfer between the mountain villages and old town districts of Yunnan on this tailor made 9 day tour. Tibetan and ethnic cultural heritage meets mountain trails and river valleys.”


Dali | Wei Shan | Nuodeng Village | Lanping | Shibao Shan | Shaxi Village | Tiger Leaping Gorge | Bendiwan | Da Shen Gou | Zhongdian | Lijiang | Lion Rock Mountain |

Description of Trekking in Yunnan, Dali to Lijiang, China

Yunnan, a land of natural beauty and mystery, located in the most southwest of China, has a vast territory, magnificent mountains and rivers, abundant natural resources and diverse cultures. Yunnan is a home to 26 ethnic minorities which give a rich color to the land. They contributed with their colorful costumes, their traditional songs and dances to the attractive life.

We will start with Dali City which is located at the foot of Cangshan Mountain and can be traced back to the early Ming Dynasty (1368-1644). You’ll explore the dazzling diversity of Yunnan’s minority ethnic groups at the towns of Dali and Lijiang. As well in the villages of Baisha, Shaxi and Nuodeng, you’ll fully experience this, as these cities are a haven for minority groups, with the Naxi, Hui and Bai ethnic groups being especially prevalent.

Spend enough time in Zhongdian or say Shangrila as well as Tiger Leaping Gorge - one of the most attractive area in Southwest China. Your tour will end the trip at Lijiang ancient town for the famous Dragon Snow Mountain etc.

Travel Team

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Departure information

This trip can be tailor made throughout the year to suit your requirements

Responsible tourism

As the pioneers of responsible tourism, we screen every trip so you can travel knowing your holiday will help support conservation and local people.

This tour will transport you to an eclectic and culturally significant range of heritage sites that date back to ancient times and it will also take you to unique places of natural beauty, including "the ancient capital of Nanzhao Kingdom”, Mount Weibao (an important mountain of Taoist spiritual importance), and an outlying Hui village of Muslim influence... Indeed, all of our tours maintain a great respect for the cultural and natural surroundings in which we visit and travel, and we have opted to use only essential methods of public or private transport for this itinerary.

To help us protect and preserve what remains of both China’s wonderful cultural and natural heritage, we ask that all of our travel participants help care for the environments they visit by being respectfully aware of the unique locations we take them to. The importance of sustainable travel, particularly in sensitive natural environments and ecosystems, is something we also value highly.

Water is a really important issue on hiking trips and whilst we must stay hydrated, it is also vital that we have a system for providing clean water without causing lots of waste with plastic bottles. We will provide the drinking water for the participants to refill in on a support vehicle and minimising the need to purchase bottled water.

Flora and fauna:
Our local guides will have a set of guidelines for each tour. The flora and fauna (flowers and animals) are in abundance and wide variety in remote villages along this tour. And the weak ecological environments are complex and multiplicity, and they are damageable. we advocate ecological tourism. Footpaths crisscrossed the fields, where the crowing of cocks and the barking of dogs were heard within distance, of course we stick to footpaths. The growing number of visitors is damaging the footpaths. It is necessary to mention this on tour briefing to our clients.

When trekking or hiking in the old village, we encourage clients to stick to bring all waste to next town on this travel route and disposed of appropriately in local garbage collection facilities. These include recycling as appropriate.

It is advocated to recycle paper and ink cartridges to reduce the waste in landfill sites. We turn off printers, computers, battery chargers and transformers at the end of each day and use energy-efficient bulbs and low-energy appliances.

The Impacts of this Trip

Our itinerary has been designed to fully incorporate the local communities of the regions we visit. We value their unique insights, knowledge, and hospitality, and believe that they too should benefit from tourism too. We respect their traditions and beliefs, and are acutely aware of the need to respect indigenous people and religious sites in particular

Transport :
We try to seldom use vehicle except necessary on the tour. We actively encourage all customers to take public transport, or rent a bike, or just walk around the small and special Tibet old town in free time. So we could ensure that our transport is as low carbon as possible.

Accommodation and Meals:
We choose the hostel which are locally owned and local traditional styles.For example Landscape Hotel which we usually use in Dali Ancient Town. Wherever we can during our trips we try to offer small, locally-run hotels and guesthouses. A great example of this is our Shaxi guest house, steering away from larger chain hotels in big city. We feel this not only allows our customers to have a more authentic experience but it also benefits the local people and community with income through tourism. We endeavor to include and strongly encourage our travelers to eat locally produced food and goods. This reduces energy resources consumed through production and transport of the food and goods purchased by our travelers.

A fair wages to local guides and drives:
We engage locally-owned and operated services thereby supporting local people and communities as well as minimizing use of long and carbon-intensive supply chains. We use all local guides and drivers so that we learn about the culture and way of life directly from those who live it and put money into local hands and economies. All receive fair wages and are provided with training opportunities both direct from us and from the local tourism bureau. Our guides are also responsible for advising travelers of the appropriate recycling options available in each place.

Local crafts and culture –
We encourage travelers to purchase craft items direct from the artisans. Guides include visits to workshops (sculpture, textile, painting) according to the interests of the group. In Yunnan Province (Kunming is the capital city), the famous local crafts are quite a lot, like Fabric Scroll Painting, Lijiang bronze ware, Lijiang bronze ware, Yunnan Lijiang Niuleba Cloth, Lijiang Pu-erh Tea....Our company ever brought our tourists to farmers` home town and invite the local painters there to introduce how and what is the Fabric Scroll Painting and let the tourists to sit down to learn how to draw Fabric Scroll Painting. The tourists are quite excited with those kind of face-to-face experiences to know local culture and local crafts.


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