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Tiger Leaping Gorge Hike & Trek Tours 2023/2024

The Tiger Leaping Gorge may not be one of most famous attractions in China, but the hiking trails of Tiger Leaping Gorge is one of world famous hiking routes. The gorge is one of the deepest gorges in the world with a vertical depth of nearly 4,000 meters. Due to the squeezing of two high snow mountains on both sides, Jinsha River shouts loud with turbulent riptide in an obstinate way to make this gorge a special cool and precipitous place for exploration. One of the snow mountains is the famous Jade Dragon Snow Mountain (5,596m) that stands on the southern side of the gorge and is visible from many places on the hiking trails on the northern side. And the other is the Haba Snow Mountain (5,396m) on the southern side of gorge.

Tiger Leaping Gorge stretches about 20 kilometers consisting of three sections: Upper Gorge, Middle Gorge and Low Gorge. The Upper Tiger Leaping Gorge is wide where the water flows slowly. Many rural villages and terraced fields situate on the mountains by the side of the gorge. The gorge gets narrow and steep in the Middle Tiger Leaping Gorge. The hiking trails here are much more challenging, but the landscape is fantastic. And there are fewer tourists ere, which is good for hikers to explore the wild features in the gorge. Lower Tiger Leaping Gorge is the downstream area of Tiger Leaping Gorge. The river releases from the narrow gorge and flows very peacefully on the flat area of Daju Village.

How to Plan a Tiger Leaping Gorge Hiking Tour

Tiger Leaping Gorge located between Lijiang and Shangri-La needs about 2 hours’ car driving from both Lijiang and Shangri-La to the tourist center at Qiaotou Town. And people now usually travel from Lijiang by private car or distance coach. 1-3 days are enough for Tiger Leaping Gorge hiking. You can spend half day to hike the Upper Gorge if you want a classic discovery. While, if you would like to discover more essences, spend 2 days to hike the Upper Trekking Route of Tiger Leaping Gorge to from Qiaotou Town to Middle Gorge. Most visitors actually prefer to arrange Tiger Leaping Gorge with Lijiang, Shangri-La and other top destinations in Yunnan and China, like Kunming, Beijing, Shanghai, Chengdu, Guilin, Lhasa, etc. to enjoy more highlights. All our itineraries are customizable, so please feel free to contact us or customize your own Tiger Leaping Gorge Tour in 2023/2024!

Notice: Because of the road upgrade, the Tiger Leaping Gorge Hiking tours to the Middle Tiger Leaping Gorge have been suspended since June 29, 2021. We will update the news once it reopens. You can also contact us to get the real-time info. The classic visits to the Upper Tiger Leaping Gorge are still available.

Best Tour Packages with Tiger Leaping Gorge In-depth Hiking

The Tiger Leaping Hiking is a mature adventure trail. There is no need to worry too much about the supply of food, water, also the accommodation even though they are generally basic. Below are the top best hiking tour packages to trek at the most beautiful parts of the gorge. No strong hiking is involved, and you can even choose some certain sections to hike according to your physical condition.

  • Tiger Leaping Gorge Hiking

    3 Days Tiger Leaping Gorge Hiking Tour

    You will firstly get to Lijiang where you can take a shortstay. Then transfer to Tiger Leaping Gorge. The hiking takes 2 days to go from Qiaotou to the Halfway. And with this tour, you go the classic trail which offer fatanstic landscape and local village custom.

  • Tiger Leaping Gorge Hiking

    4 Days Tiger Leaping Gorge Hiking Tour with Lijiang Highlights

    Lijiang's trekking routes feature some of the most striking landscapes in the world including the trek near Tiger Leaping Gorge and along the banks of the Jinsha River. This tour takes you to experience one of the great gorges of China on this 25-kilometer hike for two full days with spectacular Jade Dragon Snow Mountain scenery being the backdrop.

  • Tiger Leaping Gorge Hiking

    4 Days Tiger Leaping Gorge Hiking Tour with Shangri-La Highlights

    Shangri La, known as the Garden of Eden, is a great place to experience some spectacular and interesting landscape and culture which can't see in other parts of the world. After touring Shangri La, go to take the lifetime hiking - Tiger Leaping Gorge Trek which takes 2 days to go.

Popular Yunnan Tours including Classic Tiger Leaping Gorge Hiking

Tiger Leaping Gorge is a top must-visit place for a Yunnan discovery. The following popular Yunnan tours are your ideal choices with the personal visits to the classic destinations including Kunming, Lijiang, Shangri-La, and Dali and a more relaxing Tiger Leaping Gorge hiking arrangement for your best enjoyment of the colorful province of landscape and ethnic minority culture.

Tiger Leaping Gorge Hiking

5 Days Lijiang & Shangri-La Highlights Tour

Destinations: Lijiang / Shangri-La
Hiking Section of Tiger Leaping Gorge: Upper Tiger Leaping Gorge
Tour Pace:Comfortable

In this trip, you will explore two of the most charming places in Yunnan: Lijiang - the Kingdom of Naxi People & Shangri-La - Garden of Eden! You will not miss to graspe every second to enjoy yourself on the incredible land – have panoramic view of Lijiang Old City, explore the authentic Naxi Village to feel the special Dongba Culture, visit Pudacuo Monastery, and take a light hike to Tiger Leaping Gorge that is the world's deepest gorge. You will just find the tour fabulous every moment!

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Tiger Leaping Gorge Hiking

6 Days Best of Yunnan Tour

Destinations: Lijiang / Shangri-La / Kunming
Hiking Section of Tiger Leaping Gorge: Upper Tiger Leaping Gorge
Tour Pace:Comfortable

This 6 day tour gives you a great overview of the beautiful Yunnan, one of China's most visited provinces with the amazing visits to Lijiang, Shanri-La and Kunming to catch all the fabulous sites of sceneries, ethnic culture, historical architectures, and more, with the exciting hiking experience at the upper section of Tiger Leaping Gorge!

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Tiger Leaping Gorge Hiking

8 Days Classic Yunnan Tour

Destinations: Kunming / Dali / Lijiang / Shangri-La
Hiking Section of Tiger Leaping Gorge: Upper Tiger Leaping Gorge
Tour Pace:Comfortable

In the 8 days, you’ll visit Yi, Bai, Naxi ethnic groups’ lands of Kunming, Dali and Lijiang and the legendary Shangri-La. The most magnificent scenery and colorful ethnic culture of Yunnan are waiting to be explored, from ancient town to snow mountain, from the world’s deepest canyon to notable limestone formations...all makes you get far from the madding crowd!

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Recommended Tiger Leaping Gorge Trek Trails

Generally, one and a half day is needed to hike the highlighting section from Qiaotou to the Middle Gorge. If you want to hike all three gorges, at least two days are needed. Naxi Family Guest House, Tea & Horse Guest House and Halfway Guest House are three main bases for accommodation and dining where you can stop your hiking and get down to the concrete road to Lijiang and Shangri La.

1. Qiaotou to Naxi Family Guest House / 2 hours

Departing from Qiaotou (Hutiaoxia Town), buy the ticket, then walk a few minutes to the High Road which refers the hiking paths on the upper region of mountains. You will hike about 1.5 hours to Naxi Family Guest House. The landscape you can see from the High Road is brilliant – wandering Jinshan River, tidy terraces, blue sky…

2. Naxi Family Guest House to Tea & Horse Guest House / 3 hours

Keep hiking from Naxi Family Guest House, then you need to climb up some steep narrow paths. After one hour, you get to the most challenging hiking section of Tiger Leaping Gorge – the 28 Bends. As you can imagine from its name, this section goes up with large gradient, and is filled with dusts. One needs 1~3 hours to finish it. From the 28 Bends, the walking gets relaxing until you reach Tea & Horse Guest House.

3. Tea & Horse Guest House to Halfway Guest House / 2hours

Continue your hiking after a short rest in Tea & Horse Guest House, after 1.5~2 hours’ trek, you will get to the famous Halfway Guest House located in Bendi Wan. Most parts of road are near to the river, which is easy for you to get close to the surging water. The final section before your arrival at the Halfway Guest House is easy. The Halfway Guest House is located in a village near to the highway. This region is the best place to view the sunrise and sunset of Jade Dragon Snow Mountain.

4. Halfway Guest House to Middle Gorge / 3 hours

Many hikers regard this part as the best highlight of all hiking in the gorge. Leaving Halfway Guest House, you will two beautiful waterfalls. After a short ascent, start to take a long downhill, and pass a quiet forest, you will reach Zhongxia which is the oldest hiking route in Tiger Leaping Gorge. Then you need to hike about 1~2 hours to the bottom of the gorge – Middle Tiger Leaping Gorge. There are two famous high ladders connecting upper place to lower place because of no available road. Get down to the river side, you will see the Jinshan River shrinks in a narrow valley, and get blocked by several huge stones. Listen to the deafening voice of water flapping at the stones, and explore the nearby.

From the Middle Tiger Leaping Gorge, you have two choices: back to Halfway, and transfer back to Qiaotou, or keep hiking to next destination – Hetaoyuan.

5. Middle Gorge to Hetao Yuan / 1 hour

Heading to Hetaoyuan, there are two choices: get back to the highway, then walk straight along the highway to Hetaoyuan. Another route is the Yixiantian which is a walking path built on the rocks. But there is a short section which has possible blinding falling down from mountains. Then the road gets easy to walk.

6. Hetao Yuan to Daju / 1. 5 hours

Leave Hetaoyuan, walk down 1500 meters to the Low Tiger Leaping Gorge. Then you have to take a boat to cross the river. Walk several minutes to the park lot, then drive back to Lijiang.

Best Time to Hike Tiger Leaping Gorge

Since Tiger Leaping Gorge is located at an average altitude of 3,300 meters, the temperature is usually lower than that in Lijiang City, and it is often very cold in winter and early spring months, which is not very recommended for hiking there. From late spring to autumn is popular for enjoying hiking at Tiger Leaping Gorge, when is good with comfortable weather and also beautiful natural landscapes. In spring and summer, the surroundings are covered in refreshing green, and in autumn months, the gorge is particularly fascinating with elegant autumn view with clear blue sky backing the white Jade Dragon Snow Mountain. However, June to September as the rainy season with more dangers is not recommended. And temperature drops quickly after October, so warm clothes are advised to pack.

What to Eat for Your Hiking

There are some small restaurants and guest houses along the Tiger Leaping Gorge hike trail, which you can find nearly every 2 hours’ walk. Some restaurants are even operated by foreign people. Most guest houses offer Chinese food and some local Lijiang specialties. You can also find some simple Western dishes and drinks at some better guest houses and restaurants. And the menus are usually in both English and Chinese.

Where to stay for accommodation

There are many guest houses along the hiking trails, but the facilities are basic as this region is rural and far from cities. Convenient highways connect many villages. There are public washrooms, bathing room and hot water supply. The prices are usually ranging from CNY 30 to CNY 300 differing by facilities and location. Among all the choices, Naxi Family Guesthouse and Tiger Leaping Gorge Tea-Horse Guesthouse are the top favored accommodation for international hikers.

What to pack

Due to the mountainous steep and narrow road, a pair comfortable strong walking shoes are very necessary. Also pack light shirts and warm jacket. It is sunny, and gets hot easily because of hiking. While in the night, it is usually cold and windy. Before hiking, remember to pack with some water (at least 1 liter), some snacks like cookies, chocolate, sugar, nuts, beef jerky, etc. for energy replenishing. An alpenstock is also necessary. You can also take a flashlight for the possible outage of electricity. A pair of gloves is helpful when passing some steep roads. Sun cream and hat are MUST to prevent from the strong sunlight.

Useful Tips for Tiger Leaping Gorge Hiking

Entrance Fee: CNY 65/person.

Hike with Someone: Although Tiger Leaping Gorge Hike Trail is relatively a mature route with well equipment, you are still not recommended to hike along, since there may still be some dangers of the road or something else that may cause some injury. Besides, there are nearly nobody speak English to help at local clinics and hospitals if there is any situation. You are highly suggested hike with your partner(s) or travel in a group to safety.

Do Not Hike in Rainy Days: Since there are often debris flows and falling rocks, especially in rainy days, it is seriously advised to avoid hiking under such condition. And remember to stay away from the river when hike along the Middle Tiger Leaping Gorge to avoid the stepping on slippery rocks.

Prepare Cash: Prepare some Chinese RMB cash. Credit cards are usually not acceptable on the mountain top.

Recommended Top China Tours including Tiger Leaping Gorge

Have more days to spend in China? Why not travel Tiger Leaping Gorge with other popular travel destinations in China, such as Beijing, Shanghai, Chengdu, Mount Emei, Lijiang,Tibet etc. Following are several recommended tour packages with private service and budget price.

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Tiger Leaping Gorge Hiking
14 Days China Tour with Tiger Leaping Gorge Hiking

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