Shaxi old town
Have a Memorable Winter Trip in Yunnan
Home China Tours Yunnan Tours 7-Day Kunming, Dali, and Lijiang Winter Tour

7-Day Kunming, Dali, and Lijiang Winter Tour

If you plan to have a China trip in winter, Yunnan is a destination that's memorable in this season. The warm sunshine and pleasant climate give more charm to this area in winter.

We have selected Kunming, Dali, and Lijiang to make a special Yunnan winter tour for you. You will enjoy the landscape, history, and minority cultures in the amazing Southwest China and will meet local people who love this land and have created a beautiful life there. In this 7-day Kunming, Dali, and Lijiang tour, let the bright sunshine on the plateau warm your body and shine into your heart.

Highlights

  • Lose yourself in the less visited karst landscape of Naigu Stone Forest.
  • Meet thousands of black-headed gulls from Siberia at Dianchi Lake.
  • Learn how to make a Yunnan flower cake in a rose garden facing Cang Mountain.
  • Find the lost Tea Horse Road in the hidden ancient towns of Jianchuan and Shaxi.
  • Take a cable car ride up to the snowy world on the holy Jade Dragon Snow Mountain.
  • Visit a shaman from the Naxi nationality in Baisha Village.

Tour Map

7-Day Kunming, Dali, and Lijiang Winter Tour map
Day 1Kunming Arrival

Meet your guide in the arrivals hall at the airport or at the exit of the train station. A private vehicle will transfer you directly to your hotel. Your guide will help you check-in. Relax for the rest of the day.

Hotel options:
Kunming New Era Hotel
Green Lake Hotel

Day 2The Stone Forest and Dianchi Lake Tour, Bullet Train to Dali

breakfast and lunch

After a 1½-hour drive, visit a fantastic natural phenomenon located 90 kilometers southeast of Kunming — the Stone Forest. The various limestone shapes were formed due to millions of years' movement of the Earth.

For Chinese tourists, the Stone Forest National Park is a must-see attraction; therefore, we have selected a less crowded area, the Naigu Stone Forest. You will feel that you are walking in a national geological park but not a touristy site.

Enjoy a local lunch in a quaint courtyard with the Stone Forest National Park in the background.

Enjoy a walk in quiet Naigu Stone Forest Enjoy a walk in the quiet Naigu Stone Forest

In the afternoon, transfer back to Kunming and visit Dianchi Lake. You will see thousands of black-headed gulls having traveled all the way there to spend their winter there. Take some pictures when feeding them. Every picture could be a magnificent poster.

After the tour, your guide and driver will escort you to the train station to catch the bullet train to Dali.

Your local guide and driver in Dali will meet you at the train station's exit and then escort you to your hotel in Dali.

Hotel options:
Gurong Hotel Dali
The One Resort Dali

Feed the black-headed gulls at the Dianchi Lake Feed the black-headed gulls at the Dianchi Lake

Day 3 The Three Pagodas, Erhai Lake, Flower Cake Making, and Dali Old Town

breakfast and lunch

After breakfast in your hotel, you will be driven to the most famous landmark in Dali, the Three Pagodas. The white and slim pagodas face Erhai Lake and have Cang Mountain as their background. Besides photographing this landmark, you will understand the local Bai people's respect toward nature.

Hop in a horse-drawn carriage to enjoy a relaxing tour along the lakeshore of Erhai, which is blessed with a mild climate and stunning scenery.

Have lunch at a popular local restaurant and try the typical Dali dish of fish casserole.

The landmark of Dali The landmark of Dali
Enjoy a relaxing tour along the lakeshore of Erhai Enjoy a relaxing tour along the lakeshore of Erhai

Then you will continue on to a rose garden where you will learn how to make the famous Yunnan flower cake, which is representative of the snacks in Yunnan. You will learn how to make your cake look like a flower. You might not find flower cakes in this particular shape in an ordinary shop. Enjoy the cake you have made with a cup of flower tea and see the clouds floating above Cang Mountain.

You will be driven back to Dali Old Town, which is normally less crowded in the afternoon. In a quiet corner of the town, you will find a Chinese-style Catholic church that was built in 1927. Stay overnight in the ancient town and relax.

Learn making Yunnan flower cakes Learn to make Yunnan flower cakes
Dali Ancient Town Dali Ancient Town
Day 4Jianchuan and Shaxi Tour

breakfast and lunch

You will visit two ancient towns hidden between Dali and Lijiang, which were two important stops on the Tea Horse Road.

Starting from Dali, you will drive for about 1½ hours to get to the ancient town of Jianchuan. It is the cultural center of the Bai nationality. The residential houses, the city gates, the temples, and the bridge are still in the ancient Bai style.

Visit a workshop where a typical handicraft of the Bai nationality, Buzha, is carried out. It comprises colorful cloth with embroidery and wormwood to keep insects and evil spirits away. A Buzha master will show you this beautiful folk art and teach you how to make your own Buzha souvenir. It is a great chance to meet people who love and protect the culture of their nationality.

Make your own Buzha, the handicraft of Bai nationality Make your own Buzha, the handicraft of Bai nationality

After enjoying some local food that was loved by the horse caravans, you will continue to Shaxi Ancient Town to have a peaceful afternoon. The last remaining market town on the ancient Tea Horse Road has become quiet nowadays but the shining wall, Xingjiao Temple, Square Street, and the ancient stage, bridge, and grand courtyard still tell stories about the horse caravans.

Hotel options:
Landscape Hotel Shaxi
Sunyata Hotel

The ancient stage in Shaxi The ancient stage in Shaxi
The Yujin Bridge on the Tea Horse Road The Yujin Bridge on the Tea Horse Road
Day 5 The Old Town of Lijiang and Black Dragon Pool

breakfast and lunch

Your personal guide and driver will transfer you directly from Shaxi to Lijiang.

The Old Town of Lijiang is the best-preserved minority ancient town. Enjoy the quaint city scenery and see plenty of handicrafts in a distinctive style that is only found in this area of China.

Visit Mufu Palace, the official residence of the local governor in ancient times, to appreciate the Naxi people's brilliant skills in architecture and fine arts. You can climb up to Lion Hill to have a bird's-eye view of the whole town.

Have lunch in a local restaurant. Your guide will help you to order the famous local dishes.

Then pay a visit to Black Dragon Pool, from where the view of Jade Dragon Snow Mountain is one of the most famous postcard-perfect sceneries in Southwest China.

Hotel options:
Ivy Garden Resort Hotel
InterContinental Lijiang Ancient Town Resort

Lijiang Ancient Town Lijiang Ancient Town

Day 6 Jade Dragon Snow Mountain, the Baisha Murals, and Visit a Shaman's Family

breakfast and lunch

Visit the Baisha Murals in Baisha Village, which were painted hundreds of years ago and took about 300 years to complete. By appreciating these unique murals, you will learn about the cultures of Central China, the Naxi minority, and Tibet, as well as the stories about Tibetan Buddhism, Confucianism, and Taoism.

You will understand more about the mysterious Naxi culture by visiting a shaman's house in the village. Learn some Naxi characters and enjoy a piece of old Naxi music. You will be impressed by the local people's passion for their culture and homeland.

Naxi people in Baisha village Naxi people in Baisha village
Visit a shaman in Baisha village Visit a shaman from the Naxi nationality

Enjoy some authentic Naxi dishes for lunch and then take a cable car ride to the snowy world on the holy Jade Dragon Snow Mountain, which is normally less crowded in the afternoon.

Get to the snowy world on the Jade Dragon Snow Mountain Get to the snowy world on the Jade Dragon Snow Mountain

Day 7 Lijiang Departure

breakfast

Your guide and driver will escort you to the airport or train station.

Trip Notes

1. About the Hotels

In Dali, Shaxi, and Lijiang, we have selected hotels featuring the local culture. Due to the smaller number of foreign tourists, the Western breakfasts served might be simple and the hotel staff speak less English. Your local guides will help you if you need any assistance.

2. About Jade Dragon Snow Mountain

If you are not keen on snow, you can just take a cable car ride to Spruce Meadow to appreciate the elegant natural landscape and the view of Jade Dragon Snow Mountain. Please let your travel adviser know your preference.

3. About the Old Town of Lijiang

The Old Town of Lijiang attracts more tourists than the Forbidden City in Beijing. If you would like to escape the hordes of tourists, you can start early to find the best spots with the help of your guide or stay overnight in Shuhe Ancient Town, which is 20 minutes away from Lijiang by car. Shuhe Ancient Town is less touristic and quieter.

From USD1,339 p/p

based on 2 persons and 4-star hotel

Service Includes
  • 1-1 consultancy from an experienced travel expert
  • 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
INQUIRE ABOUT THIS TRIP