This 5 Days Kunming Xishuangbanna Tour offers you the perfect mix of highlights of "Spring City” - Kunming and “Little Thailand in China” - Xishuangbanna! Start off in vibrant Kunming for eternal “spring flavor” and iconic Karst Stone Forest. You’ll then fly southwest to Xishuangbanna, where China meets Thailand! Continue to discover the exotic capital Jinghong, where you will hit the best tropical garden, forest park and monastery in Thailand style and feast on bold Dai cuisine. Finish off after days with elephants and peacocks!
Day 1 Kunming Arrival & KunmingPick up in Kunming
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. The rest of the day is on your own to explore the comfortable cityscape and leisure atmosphere there! Have a good rest!
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!
Free-time Ideas (If you arrive early): In this afternoon, go to enjoy a cultural visit to Yuantong Temple that is one of the top oldest Buddhist temples in Kunming with more than 1,200 years’ history. Take your stroll there to feel the rich Buddhist atmosphere of three Buddhist sects filling the antique halls and houses specially designed into a traditional Chinese garden layout for a quite different appreciation of temple in China.
Then, walk to Kunming Green Lake nearby. 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!
- Winter Birds at Kunming Green Lake Park
Day 2 Kunming - Train to Xishuangbanna (B, L)Stone Forest - High speed train to Xishuangbanna
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.
After the sightseeing, you will be escorted to take a high speed train to Xishuangbanna (about 3.5 hrs). Upon arrival, your local guide will greet and guide you to your hotel in Jinghong downtown. The rest time is free for you to relax.
Nightlife idea: go to the largest night market in Xishuangbanna - Gaozhuang Night Market (or Jiangbian Night Market on the other side of the Lancang River) to savor fresh tropical fruits, sample tasty Dai snacks and shop lovely souvenirs without overspending.
- Major Stone Forest
- Gaozhuang Night Market
Day 3 Xishuangbanna (B, L)Xishuangbanna Dai Minority Park - Manting Park - Xishuangbanna Zongfosi Temple
Today, your Xishuangbanna Tour starts with the best of the best highlights of this region!
After breakfast, drive about 30km (0.5~1 h) to Dai Minority Park in Olives Dam. Being the Only Dai Culture Zone and the Soul of Xishuangbanna, Dai Minority Park will introduce you everything of the major inhabitants - Dai Minority People, including their languages, belief systems, dress styles, customs and traditions… Your tour starts from Manchun Buddhist Temple with a long history of 1,400 years. Join worshipers who come to make offerings in return for good luck and learn about Dai’s spiritual beliefs while enjoying murals and sacred statues. And then you will stroll some of the five Dai villages, which are the best-preserved ones in the whole China, to know how the local’s really live on a daily basis. Most significantly, you will experience the extreme pleasure of being the part of fantastic water fights during their daily Water-splashing Festival held at the Water Splashing Square. Treat the visitors by your side a splash or two with your buckets or water guns! If you prefer, rent a typical Die minority suit to dress yourself up like locals!
Notes: 1) Water-splashing Festival in Xishuangbanna, similar to Thailand, is an annual celebration marking the start of the New Year and will be officially held during the 13th day to 15th day of April. However, the water celebrations at Dai Minority Park will be available every day, with one held in the late morning and two in the early afternoon. 2) Take a zip-lock or a small waterproof bag to keep your valuables (like a change of clothes) dry during the water fight.
Then drive to Manting Park, Xishuangbanna’s most famous landmark and the former royal garden of the Dai kingdom. As legend says, the Dai Princess once visited the park and her soul attracted much by its beautiful scenery, hence Manting Park is also called Chunhuan Park by Dai locals, which means “Garden of the Soul”. In this complex with a history of 1,300 years, you will be able to relive the splendor and pageantry of the past in every Buddhist statue, towering spire, vacant monastery and beautifully designed lake. And you will find the best examples of Dai Buddhist architecture in the park - the Jingzhen Octagonal Pavilion and Manfeilong White Tower.
As you walk further to the back gate of Manting Park, awe-inspiring golden monasteries of Zongfisi Temple will leap to your eyes one after one. Zongfosi Temple isn’t your usual Buddhist temple, indeed, it was once an exclusive temple of Dai Kings in history. And it has long been the vital heart of Xishuangbanna Buddhist worship, ranking higher than all other temples in Xishuangbanna. The temple worships more than 25 states of Buddhas, including a remarkable 2.5-meter-high golden statue of Sakyamuni Buddha. More than 80 monks now study here. As you approach those mystical monasteries, you will hear tranquil sounds of their chanting.
After the day tour, you will be transferred back to your hotel at Jinghong downtown. This evening is free for you to explore at leisure.
Optional night activity: feast your eyes to appreciate a wonderful Dai Ethnic Show Night on Lancang Mekong River at Manting Park (usually performs for 3.5 hours during 18:30~21:30) and then enjoy happy dancing at the Bonfire Party there.
- Dai Minority Park in Olives Dam
- Zongfosi Temple
- Manting Park
Day 4 Xishuangbanna (B, L)Wild Elephant Valley - Jinuo Ethnic Village
Today, get ready to date with the great giants - elephants and to visit the Jinuo Minority Village.
Your exciting morning starts with an invitation to visit the only sanctuary of wild elephants in China - Wild Elephant Valley, where inhabit about 300 elephants. Drive about 30km (0.5-1h), you will be at the south gate of the valley. Skip the small theme gardens near the entrance, you will seize the time to catch a cable car to find the wild elephants first, because they prefer to show up in the early morning (except the midnight). The cable car ride takes about 35 minutes and will take you to the best observation platform by the river deep in the jungle where you are most likely to see them. And then your tour continues with a lush jungle trekking for a descent. Immerse yourself in this adventurous tropical forest trekking experience with opportunities meeting wild elephants coming toward you or playing at the nearby bushes. About half an hour later, you will pass by the Museum of the Asian Elephant. Step into this first elephant museum in China to learn the origin evolution and protection of these giant creatures. Then continue your way back to the Butterfly Garden, Bainiao Garden (Hundred Birds Garden), Monkey Park and Python Park near the entrance to greet more adorable tropical animals.
Notes: It is said that wild elephants prefer to show up at the mid-night most, and then the early morning or at nightfall. However, there is no fixed time. So sometimes you may miss the chances to see them.
This afternoon you will say goodbye to the animals and jungles and then be escorted to Jinuo Ethnic Village, which is inhabited by the 56th group in China called Jinuo Ethnic Group. A lively Jinuo Ethnic Show awaits you. You’ll enjoy the show while trying some typical food of them.
After the day tour, you will be transferred back to your hotel at Jinghong downtown. This evening is free for you to explore at leisure.
Optional night activity: hit the busy Gaozhuang Night Market (or Jiangbian Night Market on the other side of the Lancang River) to savor fresh tropical fruits, sample tasty Dai snacks and shop lovely souvenirs without overspending.
- Wild Elephant Valley
- Jinuo Ethnic Village
Day 5 Xishuangbanna & Xishuangbanna Departure (B)Xishuangbanna Tropical Botanical Garden - Xishuangbanna departure
A Xishuangbanna tour is not complete without a visit to Xishuangbanna Tropical Botanical Garden! On the last morning after breakfast, its time to meet with China’s best tropical flavor at Xishuangbanna Tropical Botanical Garden!
Drive outside the city for about 62km and 1 hour, you will arrive at Xishuangbanna Tropical Botanical Garden, the largest and most beautiful botanical garden in China with the largest collection of flowers and plants. This vast area is consisted of three parts, and today, you will visit the most beautiful West Area. Kick off your visit with a sightseeing battery car to lush patches of flora, with stops at every garden for short trips. You will lose track of time getting up close to the various collections of palms, Orchids, ferns, bonsais, lotus, bamboo... You will also hit a small museum to learn tropical forest species and culture of this region.
Your Xishuangbanna tour ends after the visiting of the garden. Your guide will escort you to catch your flight/train to next destination or home.
Notes: Most of the highlights of this vast garden gather at its West Area, while some visitors also like trekking its East Area and Green Stone Forest Area, which are more primitive. If you have 3.5~4 hours more left in Xishuangbanna, you can try a forest trekking there.
- Tropical Plants Garden
In this trip, you will explore two of the most charming places in Yunnan: Lijiang - the Kingdom of Naxi People and Shangri-La - Garden of Eden! Here, you are in a world of minority people, temples, old towns, ancient streets, lakes, rivers, mountains…splendid culture and breathtaking scenery are waiting for you to explore.
In this 4 days Lijinag & Shangri-La highlights tour, you’ll graspe every second to enjoy yourself on the incredible land – have panoramic view of Lijiang Ancient City, explore the authentic Naxi Village to feel the special Dongba Culture, visit Ganden Sumtseling 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!
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, 2023.
4. Reference exchange rate of USD 1= RMB 6.45. 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.
Our guide Tenzin is an excellent guide and we had an amazing time with him. He was very friendly and very knowledgeable...
Thx for arranging a great trip to Tibet! Had great time.
Our tour is really great ! So many nice moments.
we made it back to Shanghai. It was a great trip even with rain, COVID, and Sophie's personal issues.
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Our travel consultants are professional, experienced and responsible, helping you from the very beginning to the end of your China trip!
After sending us an inquiry, one of our travel consultants will get back to you within 0.5~23.5 hrs. In the next few days, he/she will be working closely with you to formulate a customized tour plan, as well as providing professional suggestions based on your travel interests, time, and budget.
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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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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.
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Have good sleep in our well-selected hotels in all the destinations of China.
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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!
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