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4 Days Kunming & Dali Highlights Tour by High Speed Train

Discover Comfortable “Spring City” & Leisure Getaway of Romance

Kunming as the provincial capital of Yunnan is actually a popular getaway with always pleasant weather and city blossoms all year round. While, Dali sandwiched between Cangshan Mountain and Erhai Lake is an exhilarating old city with romanticism from ancient history till now. This 4-day Kunming & Dali tour is the best combo for your savory of both favored romantic destinations by taking a 2 hours’ high speed train riding for easy transfer. The covering of Stone Forest, Western Hills, Dali Old Town, Three Pagodas, Bai ethnic old towns, and more must-see sites will help you soak in the best sightseeing, old town history, ethnic costume, and more highlights in both Kunming and Dali in the best pace! Join us to start your wonderful exploration!

  • Type : Private Tour
  • Tour Code : CD-KMDL-04
  • Price : from $633
    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.
  • Trip Length : 4D/3N
  • Theme : Nature / Culture / Photography


  • Visit the Stone Forest and marvel at a spectacular set of limestone groups and representative of South China’s Karst landscape;
  • Get up to Western Hills for a great marvel at the praisable Dragon Gate amongst the refreshing forest mountain and catch the bird’s eye view of fascinating Dianchi Lake and Kunming City;
  • Stroll freely in Dali Old Town, the ancient capital of Nanzhao Kingdom and Dali Kingdom, and feel like traveling back in ancient time;
  • Have a closer experience of the cultural essence and daily life of Bai ethnic minority settling down in Dali by watching their dwelling houses, tea ceremony, artistic tie-dye, and more at Xizhou and Zhoucheng.
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Itinerary Day by Day (Can Be Customized)
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Day 1 Kunming Arrival

Arrive in Kunming - Western Hills & Dragon Gate - Yunnan Nationalities Museum

Welcome to Kunming, the Spring City of China! Upon arrival at the Kunming airport/train station, the local tour guide and driver will meet you in the arrival hall and escort you to your hotel and help you check in.

After a short break, be escorted to visit the famous Western Hills which is called “Sleeping Beauty Hills”, looking like a beautiful young lady lying beside Dian Lake (the largest freshwater in Yunnan and famed as the “Pearl on the Plateau”). It is a particularly pleasant experience to walk in such verdant forest mountain park with elegant sightseeing and a series of cultural relics and sites, including some old temples. You will not miss the symbolic visit to the magic Dragon Gate as it says “If you do not visit Western Hill, you haven't visited Kunming; if you do not come to Dragon Gate, you haven't been to Western Hills”, where to admire the colorful old grottoes on the wall and catch the panoramic view of the large peaceful Dianchi Lake and Kunming City. (You can visit the temples if interested. Huating Temple and Taihua Temple are included in the ticket.)

After that, drive to Yunnan Nationalities Museum for a wonderful understanding of the 25 ethnic minority groups in vast Yunnan. This largest minority museum in whole Asia boasts a collection of over 20 thousand pieces (units) of precious cultural relics to show you the beautiful costumes, diverse ethnic festivals, daily life scenes, exquisite musical instruments, brilliant cultural texts, and so on to know the essence of Yunnan culture!

After today’s visiting, be transferred back to your hotel and have a good sleep!

Arrival Ideas: You can take a direct flight from more than 110 domestic cities and some international destinations including Hong Kong, Macao, Singapore, San Francisco, Tokyo, London, and Los Angeles. Also, you can take a bullet train from Chengdu (5.5 hours), Chongqing (4 hours), Guilin (8 hours), Guiyang (2 hours), Guangzhou (7 hours), Beijing (11 hours), Shanghai (11 hours), Hong Kong (7.5 hours), etc. with convenience!

  • Western Hill & Dragon Gate Kunming Western Hill
  • Yunnan Nationalities Museum-20210404-Adrian from Philippines-CD-HA Adrian from Philippines visited Yunnan Nationalities Museum.
  • Welcome to Kunming (Changshui International Airport) Welcome to Kunming (Changshui International Airport)

Day 2 Kunming - Stone Forest – Kunming - Dali (B, L)

Stone Forest - Green Lake - 2 Hours' High Speed Train to Dali

Good morning! After breakfast, your local guide and driver will meet you at your hotel and then escort you to discover Stone Forest first for about 1.5 hours’ riding (85km)!

Kunming Stone Forest as the “Essence of World Karst Landform” has been listed as the UNESCO World Natural Heritage with the incomparable coverage of 12 square kilometers’ stone pinnacle groups. Take the sightseeing bus to visit the Greater Stone Forest Scenic Area to admire the typical concentrating cinerous stone pinnacles by walking through the maze of stone peaks and jumping high for the panorama of the forest of protruding stone peaks. Also, you will see the famous peak on many photos and even stones towering over 40 meters. Then, continue to ride the bus to explore the Lesser Stone Forest to closely look at the iconic stone “Ashima” like a young lady, listen to the touching love story of Ashima, and fill your eyes with the emerald garden-like park of wilder stone peaks surrounded by lush green plants and blossoms. Take the sightseeing bus to exit the scenic park and drive back to Kunming downtown.

Visit Kunming Green Lake at the city center. This pretty park with a lovely lake, old-styled pavilions, corridors, flowers, etc. is the most popular place for an authentic feeling of local Kunming people’s leisure life with citizens singing, dancing, talking, exercising, etc. During November to the next March, Black-headed Gulls from Siberian will never be late to fly there for their expecting comfortable warm winter holiday. Do not miss playing with those adorable and vigorous elfin during your relaxing roam!

After today’s visiting, be escorted to train station in Kunming and take a high speed train to Dali (about 2 hour). Welcome to Dali, a historical and cultural city for Bai ethnic group. Upon arrival, you will be welcomed by the local tour guide and transferred to your hotel around Dali Old Town for check-in. Have a good rest!

  • Major Stone Forest Major Stone Forest
  • Kunming Green Lake-20190415-Marcin from USA- TD-Li Kunming Green Lake Winter Scenery photoed by our customer Marcin

Day 3 Dali (B, L)

Three Pagodas - Erhai Lake - Dali Old Town

After breakfast, your guide and driver will pick you up at your hotel. First, pay a visit the symbol of Dali - Three Pagodas and Chongsheng Temple. Built in 10th century in Nanzhao Kingdom, Three Pagodas is made of one big pagoda and two small pagodas forming a symmetric triangle. If you look at it from a distance, the pagodas are like three giant ballpoint pens breaking up the landscape of the never-ending mountains. Here, you’ll get close to look at the pagodas to know more history and stories, visit the royal temple in Dali - Chongsheng Temple, take awesome photos of Three Pagodas and the reflections…

Then, head to the famous Erhai Lake (Ear-shaped Sea), which is reputed as the "Immaculate Jade between Mountains". Normally, there are three ways to explore the lake. You can ride a sightseeing bus(default), enjoy a boat trip or try cycling. Please tell your best pick to your travel consultant before booking the tour, as the final prices will differ by activities you choose.

1) Erhai Lake Sightseeing Bus Tour (about 1 hour CNY 50/pp): There are sightseeing roads built around the lake. On the west bank of the lake, there is also a 27.5-kilometer-long Ecological Corridor with mini sightseeing buses offered. Hop on the mini bus, you will get the placid lake view while moving, with fresh air and gentle wind kissing your face.

2) Erhai Lake Boat Tour (about 2~3 hours from CNY 145/pp): On Erhai Lake cruise, you’ll enjoy the green Cangshan Mountain and Three Pagodas from afar as well as lots of birds and seagulls flying over the lake.

3) Erhai Lake Cycling Tour (about 2 hours from CNY 50/pp): If your energy permits, you can choose a cycling tour along this picturesque Erhai Lake, which may give you a more exciting experience there than the cruise and bus.

Later, be followed a trip to explore Dali Old Town. Used to be the ancient capital of Nanzhao and Dali Kingdoms, Dali Old Town is formed in the square-shaped structure, laid out on a typical north-south, east-west axis with five north-south and eight east-west streets. Wander leisurely through the historic streets with weeping willows dancing and colorful flowers blooming in the sunshine. You will visit the symbolic Wuhua Tower in a drum tower outlook. Continue to find Honglongjing (Red Dragon Well) with lovely view of clear water flow on layers of stone stages between the ancient dwelling houses and modern bars. Walk along Renmin Road to visit those bustling shops selling Yunnan specialties and some interesting items and then encounter the only Christianity church in this Chinese old town to feel the mixture culture there. As you feel the ancient flavor of the old site, stroll to the famous must-visit Foreigner Street to soak in the busy atmosphere along the old path and in those boutique shops and old coffee shops. Enjoy your time roam in this famous old town and feel like going back to the old times.

Optional activity: learning to make Flower Cake, the Dali's traditional pastry which is flat and round, with a pattern carved on the surface and a thin layer of puff pastry and filling of flower puree in the middle. You can bring home some flower cakes after the course.

  • Three Pagodas of Chongsheng Monastery - Louis J from Belg Our guest Louis J from Belg visited Three Pagodas of Chongsheng Monastery in December 2021
  • Dali Old Town - Marcin from USA Dali Old Town, Photographed by Our Guest Marcin
  • Erhai Lake, Photo Shared by Carrie Erhai Lake, Photo Shared by Our Guest Carrie in January 2019

Day 4 Dali & Dali Departure (B, L)

Xizhou Ancient Town - Zhoucheng Tie-dye - Transfer to the Airport or Railway Station for Departure

After breakfast, you’ll start your exploration of Xizhou Ancient Town, an authentic old town where local Bai people really live and work. Set eyes on the local morning market - a place for local people in traditional costumes trading daily supplies, including fresh vegetable, fruits, meats, and many kinds of food and daily necessities. It is a great opportunity for getting close to local living conditions. Walk into the “the Museum of Bai Architecture” and appreciate the exquisite residential complexes decorated fabulous sculptures, paintings, pointed eaves and wall screens. Taste Bai’s Three-Course Tea in bitter, sweet and mixed flavors and experience the tea ceremony to enjoy deeper of the artistic culture of Bai ethnic people. Then, visit Yan Family Compound where to appreciate the delicate courtyard houses, screen walls, colorful paintings, and more decorations to learn more about the fine Bai ethnic architecture.

Then, transfer to “Hometown of Bai People’s Tie-dye Art” - Zhoucheng Old Town for an appreciation of Tie-dye. Tie-dye is a typical feature to present the Bai’s excellent handcraft with various colors and elegant designs. You’ll visit local indigo workshop in Zhoucheng and know the way of making. (Optional experience: If you are interested, you can follow the local Bai people to learn some traditional skills of how to knot and view your works to be dyed into different colors with beautiful designs. This whole experience takes about 1.5 hours.)

After the visiting, be driven to the airport/train station in Dali. Service ends!

  • Bai-style Architecture in Xizhou Old Town Bai-style Architecture in Xizhou Old Town
  • Zhoucheng Tie-dye - Shot by Carrie Zhoucheng Tie-dye
  • Three Courses of Tea - Lyn Three Courses of Tea

The quotation for this trip is from $633 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‚ 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.



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‚ 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‚ 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‚ USA, July 11, 2024
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"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
"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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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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Our local guide in every destination is not only very friendly, enthusiastic but also very informative and knowledgeable.

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.

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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

  • Western Hill & Dragon Gate Western Hill & Dragon Gate
  • Yunnan Nationalities Museum-20210404-Adrian from Philippines-CD-HA Yunnan Nationalities Museum-20210404-Adrian from Philippines-CD-HA
  • Welcome to Kunming (Changshui International Airport) Welcome to Kunming (Changshui International Airport)
  • Major Stone Forest Major Stone Forest
  • Kunming Green Lake-20190415-Marcin from USA- TD-Li Kunming Green Lake-20190415-Marcin from USA- TD-Li
  • Three Pagodas of Chongsheng Monastery - Louis J from Belg Three Pagodas of Chongsheng Monastery - Louis J from Belg
  • Dali Old Town - Marcin from USA Dali Old Town - Marcin from USA
  • Erhai Lake, Photo Shared by Carrie Erhai Lake, Photo Shared by Carrie
  • Bai-style Architecture in Xizhou Old Town Bai-style Architecture in Xizhou Old Town
  • Zhoucheng Tie-dye - Shot by Carrie Zhoucheng Tie-dye - Shot by Carrie
  • Three Courses of Tea - Lyn Three Courses of Tea - Lyn

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