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4 Days Daocheng Yading Classic Hiking Tour from Chengdu (by Flight)

Best Exploration of Last Pure Land on Earth

Considering a nature trip out of box to seek the most undisturbed landscape?

Daocheng Yading, world famous for being highly treated as the “Soul of Shangri-La” after the publication of its unbelievable photos by Joseph Rock, is dreamed by countless nature lovers to have a personal admiration of its legendary wonderful views hidden in the alpine area of Southern Sichuan.

This 4 days Daocheng Yading Classic Hiking Tour takes you to achieve all your imagination of the “Last Pure Land on Our Blue Planet” in the most classic way by riding bus and horse to save your energy. You will spend 2 wonderful days exploring of Yading Nature Reserve to marvel at the three elegant sacred snow mountains (Xiannairi, Yangmaiyong and Xianuoduoji), fabulous clear Milk Lake, Five Color Lake and Pearl Lake, and have more satisfying immersion into the idyllic oil painting with grazing cattle, dancing grassland, varicolored forests, historic temples, chanting streams, and so on! Besides, you will not miss the old Benbo Temple and more landscapes on the way to complete your first Daocheng Yading close-up!

  • Type : Private Tour
  • Tour Code : CD-DYHT-04
  • Price : from request
    1. 1. This price is for one person, based on a group of 2 adults sharing one double-bed room in a 4-star hotel and traveling in low seasons;
    2. 2. This price is subject to change according to your traveling season, group size, hotel class, change of activities and possible fluctuation of currency exchange rate.
  • Theme : Nature / Hiking
  • Physical Demands :

HIGHLIGHTS OF THIS TOUR

  • Eye satisfying discovery of the “Soul of Shangri-La” at Yading Nature Reserve in the most classic leisure hiking way with bus and horse riding;
  • Close appreciation of the three holy mountains with gorgeous appearance from the best locations and more different excellent angles;
  • Immerse into the stunning shimmering holy lakes and the fabulous reflection of snow peaks, forests, blue sky in the blue and green clear water;
  • Religious visit to over-900-year old Benbo Temple to admire the red Buddhist architecture and feel the rich spiritual pursuing atmosphere in Daocheng Yading.
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Itinerary Day by Day (Can Be Customized)
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Day 1 Chengdu to Daocheng Yading

Fly from Chengdu to Daocheng Yading & Hotel Check in

Today, your guide and driver will meet you at your hotel and then escort you to Chengdu Shuangliu International Airport to catch the flight to Daocheng Yading, which needs only 1 hour. After your arrival, you will be welcomed by your local guide and driver at the arrival hall of Daocheng Yading Airport (4,411m) and then sent to your hotel at Shangri-La Town (2,950m). The rest of the day is on your own to discover Daocheng Yading and the surrounding. Have a good rest for the following hiking experience!

On the way from Daocheng Yading Airport to Shangri-La Town, you will go to visit Benbo Monastery (3,940m) to have a close look at the striking claret-red Kagyu Buddhist temple cluster of over 900 years old, learn the interesting story of its establishment and the creator, and feel the sincere Buddhist pursuit and persistence of local Lamas.

Tips: Since the altitude of Daocheng Yading area is mainly over 3,000 meters, you are highly suggested not do strenuous exercise to release or avoid altitude sickness.

  • Road to Shangri-la Town from Daocheng Yading Airport Road to Shangri-la Town from Daocheng Yading Airport

Day 2 Daocheng Yading (B)

Yading Nature Reserve (Luorong Pasture - Milk Lake - Five Color Lake)

After an early breakfast, start your exploration of Daocheng Yading Nature Reserve, the Last Pure Land on Earth first found by Joseph Rock in 1928 and then be widely treated as the “Soul of Shangri-La” with extremely dreaming wonderland.

Take the sightseeing bus from the tourist center to Zhaguanbeng for about 1-1.5 hours and enjoy the 2-2.5 hours’ hike to Luorong Pasture (4,150m) via Chonggu Monastery (3,900m) (you can also choose to walk 20 minute to Chonggu Monastery and take the 0.5 hour battery car to Luorong Pasture if you want to save energy). Enjoy your relaxing roam at the idyllic pasture with those carefree grazing cattle and goats, layers of multicolored dense alpine forest, clear winding stream, etc. backed by the three holy snow mountains, namely Xiannairi (Mount Chianrezig), Yangmaiyong (Mount Jambeyang) and Xianuoduoji (Mount Chanadorje). You will appreciate the most beautiful appearance of Xianuoduoji snow mountain like a powerful man!

Next, take the challenging 5 km’s hike for 3-3.5 hours up to the fabulous Milk Lake (4,600m) (horse riding is available to Milk Lake and needs extra payment) and marvel at the unbelievable charm of such a holy lake like a precious blue gem that even can move one to drop tears. Continue to walk another 0.5 hour to visit Five Color Lake (4,500m) 0.3 km away to savor the impressive sightseeing with beautiful snow rock mountain in white, grey, silver and chocolate, blue and green water, various alpine plantations, clear sky backdrop, etc. particularly like an world-class oil painting.

After the visiting, walk down and take the car and bus back to the entrance. And our guide and driver will send you back to your hotel at Shangri-La Town. Have a good rest!

  • Yading Milk Lake (4,600m) Yading Milk Lake (4,600m)
  • Yading Luorong Pasture Yading Luorong Pasture
  • Yading Five Color Lake (4,500m) Yading Five Color Lake (4,500m)

Day 3 Daocheng Yading (B)

Yading Nature Reserve (Chonggu Monastery - Chonggu Meadow - Pearl Lake - Poplar Forest)

Today after breakfast, go to Chonggu Monastery as the same way on Day 2 by sightseeing bus and hike. Have a stop at the temple to admire the sacred Gelug Buddhist temple architecture in white, red, yellow and black and learn the interesting story about the temple and Joseph Rock’s stop by. From such unbeatable location, you will easily take the excellent photo of the brilliant temple and the three pure white holy snow mountains. After some short walk, embrace the lovely Chonggu Meadow (4,020m) that can be paralleled with the fairyland on earth. Stroll on the vast grassland like a thick and soft carpet in yellow and green in each season. Play along the particularly appealing transparent chanting river with clearly visible little stones like countless grains of gold sank to the bottom. Do not miss the best angle to admire the Xianuoduoji snow mountain like a powerful man.

Then, continue to hike for 30 minutes to visit Pearl Lake (4,120m) that is super fascinating to admire the picturesque landscape of surrounding snow peaks, green and orange dense forest, iridescent prayer flags, and their dazzling reflection in the shimmering clear lake. Also, it is the best location to admire the holy Xiannairi snow mountain.

After that, go back and be transferred to Bang River to appreciate the ten thousand acre of poplar forest (3,740m) from the best location. The wide spread of poplar trees are so charming in pure green in spring and summer and orange and golden in autumn under the frequent azure sky in Daocheng.

After the visiting, our guide and driver will send you to your hotel in Daocheng County (3,700m) and help you check in. Have a good rest!

  • Chonggu Meadow Chonggu Meadow
  • Yading Pearl Lake & Mount Chianrezig Yading Pearl Lake & Mount Chianrezig
  • Yading Chonggu Monastery Yading Chonggu Monastery
  • Yading Poplar Forest Yading Poplar Forest

Day 4 Daocheng Yading Departure (B)

Fly off Daocheng Yading

After breakfast, your local guide and driver will send you to Daocheng Yading Airport for your flight to Chengdu or other destinations. Tour ends.

Departure Idea: Daocheng Yading Airport has direct flights to Chengdu, Chongqing and Xian, and very few connecting flights to Guangzhou, Hangzhou and Kunming.

The quotation for this trip is from request Per Person

1. This price is for one person, based on a group of 2 adults sharing one standard double-bed room in 4-star hotel and traveling with our private tour in low seasons.
2. This price is subject to change according your traveling season, group size, hotel class, change of activities in your itinerary and possible fluctuation of currency exchange rate. If you want a lower price, you can get more people to join you, or use economy class hotels.
3. This price is only valid to March 31, 2025.
4. Reference exchange rate of USD 1=RMB 7.00. The final quote is based on current exchange rate. It may change according to the currency fluctuation, while the RMB quotation will be remained the same.

What's included?

  • Professional licensed English-speaking guide;
  • Admission tickets for all attractions listed in the itinerary;
  • Accommodation as listed in the itinerary (4-star standard);
  • Necessary vehicle transfers as listed in the itinerary;
  • Domestic flights (economy class) and high-speed trains (second class) as listed in the itinerary;
  • Airport (and train station) pick up and drop off;
  • Luggage Transfers: between airports (railway station) and hotels;
  • All meals as listed( “B” for Chinese and Western breakfast buffet in your hotel; “L” for Chinese Lunch in local restaurant; “D” for Chinese dinner in local restaurant.);
  • Accident insurance;
  • Our service charge, including tour planning, handling, operational and communication charges.

What's excluded?

  • China visa;
  • Personal expenses;
  • Accommodation not listed in the itinerary;
  • Single Room Supplement;
  • Tourist sites which are not listed in the itinerary;
  • Recommended optional activities;
  • Flights or trains not listed in the itinerary;
  • Excess Baggage Charges;
  • Optional tips to guides, drivers, etc.

Check What our delighted customers are saying about our services

Hi Rita,

The trip was fantastic and there were no problems. I made a couple of mistakes, but the wonderful guides were of great assistance.

The tour arrangements were excellent. All connections and meetings with guides went perfectly.

I would recommend your service to others with an interest in China.

Cheers and thanks….and I may book another tour next year!!

Wilson

Wilson‚ New zealand, July 15, 2024

Hi April

We are glad to have chosen to Century Oasis. The ship is new, spacious and clean. Staff were friendly and provided excellent service.

Thank you for checking with us and I'm really pleased to have booked with Yangtze River Cruises and for your prompt service.

Regards

Heong

Heong‚ Singapore, July 15, 2024

Hi April,

Absolutely fantastic, can’t fault. On board food was awesome and me being vegetarian they even made me special meals each day. Staff were wonderful. I also had laundry done, no issues and very good price. Bar was well stocked and well priced. I also got a foot massage and my daughters hair washed and blow dried also value for money.

Concierge did only once on check in to offer an upgraded package for food and cabin. Then never asked again which was perfect.

Porters hired by ship in Chongqing tried to charge me 100rmb for their service but the English speaking concierge told them off very sternly.

Shore excisions included were awesome. I only did 1 optional which was the show on the second night which was absolutely amazing, it felt like I was in the show.

Only complaint is the ships announcements came into cabin speakers.

Dane

Dane‚ Australia, July 15, 2024

Hi Tracy,

Apologies for the late reply.

We thoroughly enjoyed the 3 days at Bifengxia. We arrived with an open mind, so I cannot really say that the program met our expectations or not. We learned a lot about the animals, which was great and we spend a lot of time observing them, which was fun. The program itself was more like a 3-day VIP arrangement with backstage passes rather than a volunteering program. Volunteering sounds like you have to make an effort and we were not really put to work, we were treated like guests, which is of course always positive. You prepared us well about the restrictions on interaction with the panda's which was much appreciated, and we did not expect much interaction for starters because we were visiting a research base, not a circus! The panda base itself is a tranquil site and we had a lot of people approaching us for a short conversation, really nice.

If you would ask me if I had any suggestions for improvement, then I do not really have an answer. We enjoyed the hospitality of the hotel, really nice place with a beautiful room, friendly staff and good food. Your team added to the fun and made the visit more memorable when we managed to add a visit to an old village on the last day.

I would recommend this program to anyone who is interested in a laid-back panda learning experience in a mountainous area in rural China.

Hope this helps!

Jeroen

Jeroen‚ Netherland, July 11, 2024

Hi Tracy,

Sorry, didn’t respond to you earlier. Since the China trip, we are trying to catch up with everything that we held off for month.

Here is the list of our ranking of each Tour Guides we had in each city.

Guilin - Sharon

Beijing - Linda

Shanghai - Liqi

Zhangjiajie - Nancy

Xi’An - Lily

All the Tour Guides and Drivers provided the service that we needed. Our family really appreciate their hospitality and enjoyed our visit in China. Everyone was an excellent representative of their city and an ambassador to the visitors. They make us proud as a native Chinese, who have excellent command of the English language. The professionalism and knowledge on each city’s history is outstanding. I know our kids have learned a little more about Chinese historical facts and their heritage. For those who speaks Cantonese, Grandpa is very thankful.

Above all we rank Sharon in Guilin as the best of our guides along with the driver. Sharon was very attentive, detailed, and caring of our group and especially grandpa who’s over 90 years old. In addition, she was very open to exposing us to local cultures and food. We thought she went above and beyond her duties and responsibilities.

Overall, thanks much to you and to the China Discovery team for a very memorable trip.

Kin

Kin‚ USA, July 11, 2024
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M G
"Phoebe helped us plan a great day trip that included panda volunteering and seeing the irrigation system nearby. We had a great driver and guide with us the whole day. It was also the most reasonably..." read more »
Reviewed on July 12, 2024
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M G
"Phoebe helped us plan a great day trip that included panda volunteering and seeing the irrigation system nearby. We had a great driver and guide with us the whole day. It was also the most reasonably..." read more »
Reviewed on July 12, 2024
Read all reviews(1,930+)

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Eveyone in our company is working hard for only one goal, which is to ensure the highest level of service, luxury, and attention to detail from the minute you begin planning your trip, to the day you return home.

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Beside, he/she will keep in contact with you during your entire tour in China, continually checking if everything is going well as planned.

We're working at Chengdu Bamboo International Tours, local based in Chengdu.

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Once you arrive in the destination, the patient and punctual guides will pick you up and take you to get under skin of the city at your own pace. By in-depth discovery and explanation, they’ll show you more about the history, culture, customs and authentic local life. Throughout the journey, they're not only expert guides who take care of all the details but also fellow travelers who are dedicated to help you explore in comfort and style.

Our guides are passionate about what they do, and it shows all the way!

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Using our private transfer service makes you comfortable, relaxed and worry free all the way!

Our private service includes licensed drivers with many years’ driving experience and air-conditioned, non-smoking, clean and well-maintained cars/vans. Drivers are local, polite, friendly and helpful, taking you to your tourist sites, hotels, airport/train stations in safety. All kinds of vehicle are offered, and yours depends on the size of your group. Usually, we offer sedan cars, SUVs, business vans (MPV) and different types of buses, all with extra space for your luggage.

Our private transfer service guarantees you the highest comfort!

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In each destination, you’ll enjoy a comfortable stay in a great location!

The hotels we choose are based on star rating, great locations, well-equipped facilities, cozy bed, high quality service and guests’ feedbacks. Choices are a lot ranging from luxury 5 star, comfortable 4 star to budget 3 star. You could decide where to stay to best suit for your budget and likes. Generally, the hotels have both Western and Chinese breakfast with a wide choices.

If you have already got an ideal hotel, please feel free to tell our travel consultants and they'll book the hotel for you.

Have good sleep in our well-selected hotels in all the destinations of China.

Meals & Dining

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We can satisfy all the dietary requirements no matter you want Chinese local food, western food, vegetarian food or muslin food.

The restaurants we will take you for lunch or dinner are all designated tourist restaurants approved by local tourist administration bureau. They have very good sanitary conditions and the food is prepared fresh and clean.

There will be some meals excluded in your itinerary as you like, and your private guide will be delighted to give you some suggestions and take you to the local restaurants to taste like Beijing Roast Duck, Xian Dumpling Dinner, Sichuan Hotpot, etc., if you are interested in local food tasting.

All the dining options will satisfy your stomach!

Photo gallery of this trip

  • Road to Shangri-la Town from Daocheng Yading Airport Road to Shangri-la Town from Daocheng Yading Airport
  • Yading Milk Lake (4,600m) Yading Milk Lake (4,600m)
  • Yading Luorong Pasture Yading Luorong Pasture
  • Yading Five Color Lake (4,500m) Yading Five Color Lake (4,500m)
  • Chonggu Meadow Chonggu Meadow
  • Yading Pearl Lake & Mount Chianrezig Yading Pearl Lake & Mount Chianrezig
  • Yading Chonggu Monastery Yading Chonggu Monastery
  • Yading Poplar Forest Yading Poplar Forest

Most Important Daocheng Yading Travel Notes

1. Distinguish Daocheng Yading, Yading Nature Reserve and Daocheng County

Administratively, Daocheng is a county in Garze Tibetan Autonomous Prefecture in Sichuan Province. Yading is the Yading Nature Reserve in Daocheng County, which is the major tourist area with terrific landscape. Daocheng Yading is more widely known and usually refers to Yading Nature Reserve specifically in a narrow sense mostly or Daocheng County in a board sense. During your Daocheng Yading trip, we will take you to explore the core Yading Nature Reserve and discover other top highlights in whole Daocheng County!

2. Best Time to Visit Daocheng Yading

Visitors can go to Daocheng Yading all year round. Autumn (mid-September - mid-November) is the most popular season to see the fabulous colorful Yading Nature Reserve with white snow peaks, blue lakes, orange and yellow forests, clear blue sky, etc. with comfortable weather, and when is also the favorite time for photographers. September to October during when is also appealing to marvel at the Sangdui Red Grassland and ten thousand acre of golden yellow poplar forest, like a natural oil painting. Spring (late March - late June) is also great to see the mountains dressed with azaleas and other various flowers in different colors.

3. How to Avoid High Altitude Sickness

Most places in Daocheng Yading are more than 3,000 meters high above sea. To help you release or avoid altitude sickness, you are highly suggested drink some Rhodiola rosea at least one week before visiting Daocheng Yading and not do strenuous exercise during your whole trip. Besides, drink enough water and sleep well!

Daocheng County 3,700m Daocheng Yading Airport 4,411m
Shangri-La Town 2,950m Yading Nature Reserve 2,900m-6,032m
Mount Xiannairi 6,032m Mount Yangmaiyong 5,958m
Mount Xianuoduoji 5,958m Milk Lake 4,600m
Five Color Lake 4,500m Pearl Lake 4,120m
Luorong Pasture 4,150m Chonggu Monastery 3,900m
Chonggu Meadow 4,020m Yading Village Viewing Deck 4,060m
Blue Moon Valley 2,200m Benpo Temple 3,940m
Poplar Forest 3,740m Sangdui Red Grassland 3,940m
4. Where to Stay in Daocheng Yading

Visitors may not stay in only one place during you Daocheng Yading trip. For your discovery of Yading Nature Reserve, Shangri-La Town is the best place to stay with only several kilometers to the entrance and a better altitude lower than 3,000m. And for your enjoyment of other attractions and flight catching, you are more suggested to stay in Daocheng County that is 3700m high and offers more than 10 choices of 2-4 stars. Yading Village within Yading Nature Reserve is also chosen for a second hiking day, however, the altitude above 4,000 is not recommended for the first night in Daocheng, besides, the offer of facilities, hot water and electricity is not so good.

5. What to Wear during Your Trip in Daocheng Yading

As temperature in Daocheng Yading is usually lower than that in other destinations, it is necessary to take enough down jackets, mountaineering jackets, thick sweaters, waterproof clothes, scarves, gloves and antiskid hiking shoes in spring, autumn and winter season. Long-sleeves coats are also recommended in summer. Sun block, sunglasses, hats, lip balm, and so on are suggested for all seasons.

6. To Customize Your Daocheng Yading Tour

We China Discovery based in Chengdu, Sichuan have rich experience for providing Daocheng Yading tour arrangement and customization service for global visitors. Our professional travel expert will also help you sincerely to design your Daocheng Yading tour if you are interested in extending to more stunning destinations in Sichuan such as Chengdu, Leshan, Mount Emei, Jiuzhai Valley, Mount Siguniang, Danba, Kangding, Xinduqiao, or other domestic destinations like Yunnan, Tibet, Beijing, Shanghai, etc. We will show you the terrific sightseeing, culture, history and more highlights of the whole Sichuan and all places during your memorable trip!

7. Extending Chengdu trip to Jouzhaigou Valley, Leshan Giant Buddha, Mount Emei and Mount Qingcheng is strongly recommended.

Usually, the highlights of Chengdu can be discovered in brief one or two days, but it is a wonderful gateway city to Sichuan’s UNESCO World Cultural Heritages sites, especially Jiuzhaigou Valley, which acts as the second best travel place (after Chengdu) and most picturesque place in Sichuan. Besides, you can visit Leshan Giant Buddha, Emeishan Mountain, Dujiangyan Panda Base and Mount Qingcheng. If you like an adventure to more primitive and breathtaking natural world, go western Sichuan. China Discovery can provide tailor-made tours to all above destinations with great prices.

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