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Retrace the Caravan Trail into the Heart of Shangri-la

    

Itinerary:
Day 1 Kunming                            
Meet in Kunming, check in a hotel beside the beautiful Green Lake, make an orientation about this trip. And pay a visit to the local Flower and Bird Market if time permitted.  

Day 2 Kunming/Shangri-la
Shangri-la is easily reached by a short flight (50 mins). After check in, we begin to discover this historic caravan staging port. There are numerous sights such as the chalet-style adobe houses of Dukezong old town, 17th century Songzanlin Monastery built at the orders of the 5th Dalai Lama, and resembling the Potala Palace in Lhasa. And we also get chance to take yak butter tea and participate in Tibetan dances in the home of a local Tibetan family.  

Day 3 Shangri-la/Deqin
Today we transfer to Deqin, the very foot of Mt. Khawakarpo. Land cruising northward, we can relevantly image how deeply the ancient caravan people admired the nature: the Lake Napa Nature Reserve with colorful grassland, the great turn of Jinsha River after the beautiful name of the Moon Bend, high passes on a narrow, meandering mountain road flanked by immense forests of the Baimang Snow Mt. area, and also a distant view of Meili Snow Mt. On the half way we will stop at a famous ferry place and vital passage of the caravan trail, Benzilan, with its fertile and beautiful land, different ethnic group people and culture that gathered here. And we will finally arrive and overnight in Deqin.  

Day 4 Deqin/Mingyong/Cizhong
Today we will pilgrimage to the sacred Mt. Khawakarpo. In the early morning, go to Feilaisi Monastery to appreciate the great sunrise over the magnificent peaks of  Meili Snow Mt. Then transfer to Mingyong village, hiking (4-5 hours) or horse riding tor Mingyong Glacier. Later we will take a van along the Langcang River to reach the beautiful Cizhong village where we will spent the night. It’s a 4 hours adventurous experience.  

Day 5 Cizhong/Deqin
After breakfast, we go to the village church for mass with the local church goers. You will have the rest of the morning to walk around the village, chat with villagers and observe their way of living. You might even get the chance to sample the local wine—brewed from grape vines first planted by the French.  In the afternoon, we will take a 4-hour drive back to Deqin.  

Day 6 Deqin/Shangri-la
In the morning we explore Deqin, strolling down the main street selling Tibetan handicarfts and equipments for horses and cowboys. And then drive 7 hours back to Shangri-la. If time allows, we will visit Dongzhulin Monastery, the birthplace of Tibetan Buddhism in Yunnan.  

Day 7 Shangri-la/Kunming A morning flight to Kunming and end of the journey.


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