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15-Day Yunnan, Chengdu, Jiuzhaigou, Dunhuang and Jiayuguan Tour

Classic Yunnan and Panda Tour

Explore the captivating beauty of Southwest China and its cultural treasures. Wander through the ancient streets of Lijiang, marvel at the stunning landscapes of Jiuzhaigou Valley, and discover the historical wonders of Dunhuang and Jiayuguan. Immerse yourself in the rich traditions of Chengdu, famous for its pandas and spicy cuisine. This meticulously crafted journey offers a perfect blend of natural splendor and cultural heritage.

The itinerary below is only one possibility. Tips to tailor-make your trip are offered as inspiration. Send us details of your preferences and our travel experts will customize this trip to suit your interests, tastes, and budget.

Tour 'Wow' Points

Embark on a Scenic Cruise on the Tranquil Erhai Lake

Erhai Lake

Experience the Charm of a Naxi Minority village

Naxi Minority village

Experience Taking Care of a Cute Panda

make panda cakes

Witness the Famous Great Wall on the Cliff of Jiayuguan

Great Wall on the Cliff

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Itinerary Quick Look

Here is a suggested itinerary. We are happy to customize a tour according to your interests.

DAY 1 Kunming Arrival

Your private guide will be ready to meet and greet you at the arrival hall in Kunming. A comfortable private car with an experienced driver will transfer you directly to your hotel. Your guide will help you to check-in.

DAY 2 Kunming | The Stone Forest

The Stone Forest: Discover the breathtaking natural wonder of the Stone Forest, located 90 km southeast of Kunming. This stunning karst landscape, formed over millions of years, showcases a variety of unique rock formations. As you explore, you'll be immersed in the rich culture of the Sani people who call this area home. Experience their captivating folk customs, adorned with vibrant embroidery and mesmerizing minority dances. The combination of these cultural elements with the breathtaking natural scenery is sure to leave a lasting impression.

Yuantong Temple: Immerse yourself in the history and spirituality of Kunming as you visit the magnificent Yuantong Temple. With a proud history of over 1,200 years, this temple stands as the largest in Kunming. In 1956, the temple hosted a grand ceremony to welcome and consecrate the Buddha's tooth, highlighting its significance in the Buddhist community. Recognized as one of the key Buddhist temples in China by the State Council, Yuantong Temple offers a serene and awe-inspiring experience.

DAY 3 Kunming to Dali | Ancient City of Dali

Ancient City of Dali: Immerse yourself in history as you explore the Ancient City of Dali. Wander through its charming streets, lined with traditional architecture and ancient city walls. Discover the rich cultural heritage of the Bai ethnic minority and visit historic landmarks that reflect the city's storied past.

Cruise on Erhai Lake: Embark on a scenic cruise on the tranquil Erhai Lake. Marvel at the stunning natural beauty surrounding this pristine body of water, with its crystal-clear waters and picturesque landscapes. Enjoy the fresh breeze as you soak in the serene atmosphere and capture unforgettable views.

Visit Houses of Bai People in Xizhou: Journey to Xizhou, a Bai ethnic minority village renowned for its well-preserved traditional houses. Immerse yourself in the local culture as you explore these ancient dwellings, each showcasing exquisite Bai architectural styles and intricate designs. Engage with the friendly villagers and gain insights into their daily lives and unique customs.

DAY 4 Dali to Lijiang | Li Shui Jin Sha Show

Watch the Li Shui Jin Sha Show: Experience the captivating Li Shui Jin Sha Show, where the art forms of dance, painting, and hand writing come together to depict the magnificent geography of the Lijiang area. Delve into the rich ethnic customs of northwest Yunnan and the ancient cultural heritage of the NaXi people. This mesmerizing show embraces the essence of diverse ethnic groups and showcases their cultural images through various artistic expressions. Witness the fusion of tradition and innovation as the performance brings to life the vibrant costumes and the spirit of the nation.

DAY 5 Lijiang | The Tiger Leaping Gorge

Tiger Leaping Gorge: Explore one of the deepest and most breathtaking gorges, Tiger Leaping Gorge, located in Hutiaoxia Town. Just 105 kilometers away from Zhongdian/Shangri-La County, this natural wonder offers spectacular views. The best time to visit is during spring when melting snow causes the river to flow vigorously, creating a turbulent and awe-inspiring sight.

First Bend of the Yangtze River: Experience the picturesque beauty of the First Bend of the Yangtze River, surrounded by majestic mountains and intersecting rivers. This magnificent site, situated at an altitude of 1850 meters above sea level, serves as an important ferry connecting inland regions with the old trade route for tea and horses in Tibet. Marvel at the stunning scenery as you learn about the historical significance of this vibrant trade route.

DAY 6 Lijiang to Tacheng | Yunnan Golden Monkey National Park

Discover the mesmerizing Yunnan Golden Monkey National Park, a must-visit destination on your journey through China. Nestled in the heart of Yunnan Province, this pristine park boasts lush landscapes, rare wildlife, and a serene atmosphere that will captivate US travelers.

Your adventure begins as you step into the realm of these elusive golden monkeys, a rare and treasured species found only in this region. Wander through dense forests, following well-marked trails that lead to hidden waterfalls, tranquil lakes, and picturesque valleys.

DAY 7 Lijiang to Chengdu| The Panda Breeding and Research Center

Embark on an unforgettable journey in Chengdu with our one-day tour. Start by visiting the Panda Breeding and Research Center, where you'll witness the highly successful breeding program amidst bamboo groves. Explore the panda museum to learn more about these fascinating animals. Afterwards, immerse yourself in the vibrant atmosphere of Jinli Old Street, sampling local snacks and discovering traditional architecture.

Don't miss the chance to visit the iconic "I Am Here" Panda Sculpture, a massive art installation that has become a trendy landmark. Indulge in the unique experience of Panda Post, where you can purchase panda-themed items and even mail a postcard to your future self.

End your day with a sizzling culinary adventure by trying the famous Sichuan Hotpot. Let your taste buds be tantalized by the numbingly spicy flavors of this traditional Chengdu cuisine. Our knowledgeable guide will be there every step of the way, ensuring you make the most of your trip. Prepare for an enchanting journey filled with giant pandas, cultural delights, and unforgettable experiences.

DAY 8 Chengdu| The New Century Global Center

Head to the New Century Global Center, Chengdu's extraordinary gift to the world. As the largest freestanding building globally, This architectural wonder houses a vibrant city within, featuring businesses, offices, shopping malls, theaters, and even two five-star hotels. Families will find the New Century Global Center particularly appealing, offering a plethora of entertainment options for children. They can enjoy a unique indoor beach experience at Paradise Island, complete with a wave pool.

Additionally, an indoor ice-skating rink, a bowling alley, and a children's play area are available, ensuring a fun-filled day for everyone. Don't forget to catch a kid-friendly movie at the large cinema, catering specifically to younger audiences. Located just 30 minutes away from Chengdu City Center, the New Century Global Center awaits, promising mesmerizing sights and exciting activities that will leave you with cherished memories of your time in Chengdu.

DAY 9 Chengdu to Pingwu| The Pingwu Forested Nature Reserve

Explore Pingwu Forested Nature Reserve and Meet Sichuan Snub-Nosed Monkeys. Get ready for a unique encounter with Sichuan's adorable snub-nosed monkeys in the beautiful Pingwu Forested Nature Reserve. Nestled in Sichuan Province, this hidden gem offers a chance to witness these endearing creatures in their natural habitat.

As you explore lush forests and mingle with local communities, you'll also immerse yourself in Sichuan's rich culture and savor authentic cuisine. Whether you're a wildlife enthusiast or just seeking adventure in nature, this reserve promises an unforgettable experience for US travelers. Join us for an amazing journey as we connect with these unique monkeys and the stunning landscapes of Pingwu Forested Nature Reserve.

DAY 10 Pingwu to Jiuzhaigou | The Shuzheng Valley

Shuzheng Valley: Begin your adventure in the enchanting Shuzheng Valley, one of the main highlights of the Jiuzhaigou Nature Reserve. Immerse yourself in its natural splendor as you wander through crystal-clear lakes, shimmering waterfalls, and lush forests. Capture stunning photographs and bask in the tranquility of this picturesque valley.

Rize Valley: Explore the breathtaking beauty of Rize Valley, a hidden gem within the Jiuzhaigou Nature Reserve. Marvel at its emerald-colored lakes, towering snow-capped peaks, and dramatic landscapes. Experience the harmony between nature and serenity as you immerse yourself in the untouched wilderness.

Jiuzhaigou Nature Reserve (Sight-seeing Shuttle Bus Included): Discover the wonders of the Jiuzhaigou Nature Reserve, a UNESCO World Heritage Site known for its scenic beauty and diverse ecosystems. Hop on the sight-seeing shuttle bus, specially designed to traverse this vast reserve, and enjoy panoramic views as you venture deep into the heart of nature's masterpiece.

Zechawa Valley: End your journey in the captivating Zechawa Valley, known for its awe-inspiring vistas and pristine landscapes. Marvel at the incredible mirror-like reflections in the tranquil lakes, framed by towering peaks. Immerse yourself in the boundless beauty of this untamed valley, abundant with biodiversity and natural wonders.

DAY 11 Jiuzhaigou | Huanglong Scenic and Historic Interest Area

Huanglong Chair Lift (Up): Begin your adventure with a thrilling chairlift ride, ascending the breathtaking landscapes of Huanglong. Marvel at the panoramic views as you glide above lush forests and pristine alpine scenery. This scenic lift will provide you with a bird's-eye perspective and a memorable start to your exploration.

Huanglong Scenic and Historic Interest Area: Immerse yourself in the natural wonders of Huanglong Scenic and Historic Interest Area, a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Discover the mesmerizing travertine terraces, where mineral-rich spring water creates a series of stunning pools and cascades of various colors. Traverse the wooden walkways and immerse yourself in this otherworldly landscape, surrounded by rugged mountains and lush greenery.

DAY 12Chengdu to Dunhuang | Mogao Caves

Mogao Caves: Immerse yourself in the rich cultural heritage of the Mogao Caves during a guided tour. The knowledgeable guide, fluent in English, German, French, and Japanese, will accompany you alongside fellow travelers. While around 30 caves are accessible to the public, the tour typically includes a selection of 10 caves that offer a representative glimpse into the site's overall magnificence. Please note that the specific caves visited will be determined by the guide.

Dunhuang Mural Research Institute and Mural Facsimile Experience: Enhance your visit to the breathtaking murals of the Mogao Caves with a special experience at the Dunhuang Mural Research Institute. Gain insights from an expert who will guide you through the appreciation and analysis of the murals. Then, choose a mural sample and create your own facsimile on a mud slab, using the same material found in the Mogao Caves. Take your masterpiece home as a cherished momento of your Mogao Cave adventure.

DAY 13 Dunhuang to Jiayuguan | The Cliff-Side Great Wall

The Cliff-Side Great Wall: Witness a remarkable section of the Great Wall known as the Cliff-Side Great Wall, situated 11 km northwest of Jiayuguan city center and 7 km north of Jiayu Pass Fort. This particular section of the wall is built on a steep ridge with a gradient of 45 degrees, giving it the appearance of being suspended from the side of the mountain range. Its precarious positioning has earned it the nickname "the Suspended Wall". Immerse yourself in the awe-inspiring engineering marvel of this unique part of the Great Wall.

Fresco Tombs of the Wei and Jing Dynasty: Venture into the northwestern Gobi desert, approximately 20 km from Jiayuguan City, between Xincheng Township of Jiayuguan City and Dingjiazha Township of Jiuquan City, to discover the fascinating Fresco Tombs of the Wei and Jing Dynasty. In this remote desert landscape, you will encounter approximately 1400 tombs from this ancient era. Marvel at the intricate murals and gain insights into the rich history and cultural significance of this burial site.

DAY 14 Jiayuguan| The Jiayuguan Pass

Jiayuguan Pass: Explore the renowned "First Pass Under Heaven" located at the western end of the Ming Dynasty Great Wall. Jiayuguan Pass is not only the most magnificent pass but also the best-preserved among the thousand passes of the Great Wall. Positioned strategically in the Gansu corridor between two mountain ranges, this fort offers breathtaking views. Uncover the fascinating history of the world's longest wall at the adjacent Great Wall Museum, which houses a remarkable collection of artifacts.

DAY 15 Jiayuguan Departure

Our guide will help you transfer from your hotel to Jiayuguan Airport for departure with independentcar/van and guide.

Tour Price

FromUS3,750 p/p Based on a private tour for 2 people. Price varies depending on program, travel date, number of people and chosen hotel

Price includes:

  • Private air-conditioned business car with big windows and ample space
  • English speaking local guide
  • Activities, hotels, and meals listed in the itinerary
  • 24/7 helpline for while you are traveling

Tour code: cht-cx-53

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