13 Days Yunnan Muslim Culture Discovery Tour

For this tour, you will visit the highlights of Kunming, Dali, Lijiang and Shangri-La. This is also a minority discovery tour, because you will find minority diversity during your trip, the minorities such as Huis,Yis, Bais, Naxis and Tibetan. Moreover, the Tiger Leaping Gorge will be the most impressive part of your trip, you could be shocked by the ruggedness and magnificence of Tiger Leaping Gorge and the mountains around when you are there. This part can not be missed. You will have some time to visit muslim areas.


  • Experience the local students’ study life by having classes, games, eating etc.
  • Doing voluntary work at a poor village.
  • Have leisure time with students.
  • Cycling and trekking in Lijiang.

Breif Itinerary

  • Day 1 Arrive in Kunming
  • Day 2 Kunming Muslim Tour-Tonghai
  • Day 3 Tonghai-Jianshui
  • Day 4 Jianshui-Gejiu
  • Day 5 Gejiu-Shilin-Kunming
  • Day 6 Kunming-Dali by Speed Train
  • Day 7 Dali-Weishan-Dali
  • Day 8 Dali-Lijiang
  • Day 9 Lijiang
  • Day 10 Lijiang-Tiger Leaping Gorge-Haba Village
  • Day 11 Haba Village-Baishuitai-Shangrila
  • Day 12 Shangrila
  • Day 13 Departure from Shangrila

Google Map

Detailed Itinerary

Day 1 Arrive in Kunming

Sightseeing and Activities:Arrive in Kunming
Accommodation: Kunming
Meals: Lunch

We will meet you at Kunming airport or railway station and transfer you to the hotel. Dinner at local Muslim restaurant in Kunming. The rest of the day is on your own to relax or explore evening scene of the city.

Day 2 Kunming Muslim Tour-Tonghai

Sightseeing and Activities: Nancheng Mosque, Najiaying Great Mosque, Xiushan Park
Accommodation: Tonghai
Meals: Breakfast, lunch

This morning, you will go to pray at Nancheng Mosque. The Nancheng Mosque is the largest mosque in Kunming, the mosque was constructed during the Tang Dynasty and continued to be renovated and reconstructed through the Qing Dynasty. The mosque’s design reflects that of Chinese temples due to the Buddhist culture.

This afternoon, drive to Tonghai County.  Visit and pray at Najiaying Great Mosque which is about 110 km away from Kunming. Then visitXiushan Park in Xiushan Mountain. Xiushan Moutain is one of the four famous mountains in Yunnan Province.

Day 3 Tonghai-Jianshui

Sightseeing and Activities: Jianshui Old Town, Zhu Family Garden, Jianshui Confucius Temple
Accommodation: Jianshui
Meals: Breakfast, lunch

Drive to Jianshui County. Stroll around Jianshui Old Townto see Chaoyang Gateway Tower, Old Well of Jianshui. 

Then make the visit to Zhu Family Garden the so-called ‘Grand View Garden’ of South Yunnan Province, which is a representative of Chinese residential houses of the Qing Dynasty (1644-1911). When walking through the garden, it really seems as if you are strolling through the Grand View Garden depicted in ‘A Dream of the Red Mansions’ (a famous Chinese Classical novel by Cao Xueqin (1724-1764) in the Qing Dynasty). This garden was the residence and ancestral temple of the rich man Zhu Weiqing and his brother in the Qing Dynasty (1644-1911).

Later,visit Jianshui Confucius Temple. This over 700-year-old temple was initially built in the 22nd year of Zhi Yuan reign in the Yuan Dynasty (1285AD). It has been repaired and extended for about 50 times and now covers an area of 7.6 hectares. Based on its scale, construction standard and excellence in preservation, Jianshui Confucius Temple stands second only to the one in Qufu of Shandong Province, hometown of Confucius and the one in Beijing. It is the best large-scale Confucius Temples in south China.

Day 4 Jianshui-Gejiu

Sightseeing and Activities: Tuanshan Village, the Garden of Family Zhang, Double Dragon Bridge, Great Mosque of Shadian
Accommodation: Geliu
Meals: Breakfast, lunch

This morning, you’ll visitTuanshan Village andthe Garden of Family ZhangTuanshan Village is a rare surviving example of an intact-albeit neglected-traditional walled Yunnan village compound in southwestern China, and has been added to the 2005 list of internationally significant sites by the World Memorial Fund for Architecture (WMF), an international fund for the protection of world heritage sites. And Have a stop to take picture at Double Dragon Bridge.

Then drive to Shadian Town in Gejiu City. Pay a visit to Great Mosque of Shadian and pray there. There is a Muslim Accessories shop beside the mosque, where you can have or do a little shopping there. Shadian Grand Mosque is the largest mosque in the southwest and is one of the 100 famous mosques of China. Shadian mosque exhibits an elegant architectural style. 

Day 5 Gejiu-Shilin-Kunming

Sightseeing and Activities: Stone Forest, flowers and birds market
Accommodation: Kunming
Meals: Breakfast, lunch

Drive to Shilin County. Visit Stone Forestwhich is one of the largest plantations of rapeseed flowers in Southwest China. Fields covered with golden rape stretch as far as the eye can see and form seas of yellow buds. Combined with a unique terrain dominated by karst features with small basins among mountain ranges, the place boasts very unique landscape features.

Drive back to Kunming, visit flowers and birds market in Kunming downtown.

Day 6 Kunming-Dali by Speed Train

Sightseeing and Activities: Three Pagodas in Chongshen Monastery, Erhai Lake, Dali Ancient Town
Accommodation: Dali 
Meals: Breakfast, lunch

Reflection Park of Three Pagodas in Dali City

Take the high speed train to Dali (2 hours). After arrival, meet your local guide and transfer to the hotel in Dali Ancient Town. Dali which is a historically and culturally famous city of China, is renowned for her historical interest and Bai ethnic culture.

After that,  you will visit the Three Pagodas in Chongshen Monastery which has a history of over 1,800 years located at the foot of Cangshan Mountain facing to the Erhai Lake. Three Pagodas are made of three ancient independent pagodas forming a symmetrical triangle.

After lunch, cruise in Erhai Lake by the small boat to the Jinsuo Islet in the east Erhai Lake. There are 200 Bai ethnic families around 1000 people in Jinsuo Island.In Erhai Lake cruise, you will enjoy the green Cangshan Mountain and the Three Pagodas from a far as well as lots of birds and seagulls flying over the lake.

Afterwards, visit Dali Ancient Town. It can be dated back to the year 1382 during the Ming Dynasty (1368-1644) and has been among the top listed historical cities of China since 1982. With Erhai Lake to the east, and Cangshan Mountain to the west, its grand city wall, traditional Bai ethnic minority folk houses and marvelous scenery have been attracting many visitors. The tour in Dali Ancietn Town will include the Foreigner Street, the Gate Towers and the Ancient City Wall. 

Day 7 Dali-Weishan-Dali

Sightseeing and Activities: East Lotus Village, Donglianhua Mosque, Weishan Ancient Town
Accommodation: Dali
Meals: Breakfast, lunch

Donglianhua Mosque in Weishan County, Dali

After breakfast, drive about one hour to Weishan Yi and Hui Autonomous County. Visit East Lotus Village(Donglianhua Village)before arrival in Weishan Ancient Town. Donglianhua Village also has rich minority and strong Muslim customs. The most outstanding representative is the Donglianhua Mosque in the village. Donglianhua Mosque is a major attraction in Donglianhua Village. This large-scaled mosque built in unique folk style is a great destination for the admiration of Muslim architecture and culture. Drive to visit Weibaoshan Mountain at the first which is one of the 14 China’s most famous Daoist holy mountains.  

Come back to Weishan Ancient Town, visit Big and Small Temples on the way. You will explore Weishan Ancient Town in the afternoon. Weishan Ancient Town was built more than 600 years ago. There are a lot of ancient buildings in it. The magnificent Building Gongchen is the symbol of the ancient city.

After that, drive back to Dali.

Day 8 Dali-Lijiang

Sightseeing and Activities: Xizhou Town, Zhoucheng Village, Morning Market, Lijiang Old Town
Accommodation: Lijiang
Meals: Breakfast, lunch

Xizhou Ancient Town in Dali

In the morning, you will head for Xizhou Town to fully appreciate Bai-style traditional architectural courtyards, taste their fragrant Three-Course Tea and explore their distinctive culture. Xizhou is our home. This little village has been called ‘a living art museum’ due to its unusual concentration of nationally protected heritage sites, mostly including architecture that spans the Ming Dynasty (1368 – 1644) until the creation of New China in 1949, but also includes centuries old trees, parks, and wildlife preserves.

Strolling through the morning market and main walking street will reveal a vibrant town with a healthy mix of traditional Bai culture and modern influence from Eastern China and abroad. It is the balance of development and forward thinking that exists in Xizhou that makes it special.

After Xizhou, visit Zhoucheng Village which is the largest Bai ethnic village in China and the Bai Ethnic Tie-dying Cloth Workshop where you can take some special souvenir with the Bai ethnic style. The tie-dyeing products in Zhoucheng Village are well sought after, both at home and abroad. Do drop by and witness for yourself the process of this historical craftsmanship. Who knows, you will return home with some cheap and beautiful crafted cloths.

Transfer to Lijiang in the afternoon. You will be relaxed around Lijiang Old Town, a well-preserved old city of ethnic minorities with brilliant culture, is a central town of the Lijiang Autonomous County of the Naxi Ethnic Minority in Yunnan Province. Located on the plateau which is 2,400 meters above the sea level and embraced by the tree-covered Lion Mountain in the west, Elephant and Golden Row Mountains in the north, vast fertile fields in the southeast and crystal clear water running through, the old town looks like a big jade ink slab, therefore got the alias the Town of Big Ink Slab (Dayanzhen).

Day 9 Lijiang

Sightseeing and Activities: Ganhaizi Meadow, Baishuihe River, Jade Dragon Snow Mountain,  Spruce Meadow, Baisha Old Town, Baisha Mural 
Accommodation: Lijiang
Meals: Breakfast, lunch

Enjoy the sunrise of the Jade Dragon Snow Mountain and Lijiang Ancient Town in the morning, drive about 30KM to Ganhaizi Meadow(3100M), you will take the sightseeing bus for a short visiting through the Baishuihe River in Blue Moon Valley, take the chairlift up to visit Jade Dragon Snow Mountain. The cableway will be arranged according to the condition of the mountain. You will hike around 1 hour in the original forest in Spruce Meadow(3200M).

After lunch, enjoy Impression Lijiang Show which is A Spectacular Show with Jade Dragon Snow Mountain as the Backdrop, directed by the famous director Zhang Yimou. Impression Lijiang is a magnificent outdoor singing and dancing performance demonstrating the tradition and lifestyle of the local ethnic people. It is another creation of famous Chinese director Zhang Yimou.The show is innovatively staged in the morning and afternoon, at 3,100 meters (10,100 feet) above sea level with Jade Snow Mountain as the breathtaking backdrop.

Stroll through Baisha Old Town, which is an enchanting traditional Naxi style old town. Visit the Baisha Mural about 600 years old, which is one part of the World Cultural Heritage by the UNESCO 1997. 

Transfer back to hotel in the late afternoon.

Day 10 Lijiang-Tiger Leaping Gorge-Haba Village

Sightseeing and Activities: First Bend on the Yangtze River, Tiger Leaping Gorge, Haba Village
Accommodation: Haba Village
Meals: Breakfast, lunch

From Lijiang, you’ll drive about 60KM to the First Bend on the Yangtze River with imposing gorge scenery.

Visit the Tiger Leaping Gorge, the deepest gorge in the world. With 34 rapids of the Yangtze River, it is called the Jinsha in this area because you can find gold in the river. Afternoon, you’ll head for Shangri La, the former Zhongdian which is welknown as the paradise destination for every tourist.

Then drive to Haba Village for overnight.

Day 11 Haba Village-Baishuitai-Shangrila

Sightseeing and Activities: Baishuitai, Dukezong Ancient Town, Guishan Park
Accommodation: Shangrila
Meals: Breakfast, lunch

Drive to visit Baishuitai. Baishuitai or Baishui Tableland, also named the White Water Terraces, is located in the foothills of the Haba Snow Mountains, 101 kilometers (about 62 miles) southeast of the Shangri-la County. It is known as one of the most attractive destinations in mysterious Shangri-La and is an ancient Chinese landform with a history of 200,000 to 300,000 years.

After that, drive to Shangrila. Visit Dukezong Ancient Town and Guishan Park. Dukezong is an important town of the Ancient Tea-horse Trade Caravan from Yunnan to Tibet and India.The Square Street in the old town, at the heart center of the old town, is the main tour area gathering a maze of cobbled lanes, white stupas, renovated tourist shops, café, bars, etc. Further away from the square street, the narrow winding lanes will give you a quieter shelter and unveil you more authentic local touch with the unrestored structures and real local life.

Day 12 Shangrila

Sightseeing and Activities: Ganden Sumtseling Monastery, Pudacuo National Park, Tibetan village and family
Accommodation: Shangrila
Meals: Breakfast, lunch

In the morning, visit the Ganden Sumtseling Monastery, the largest Tibetan monastery in Yunnan. Songzanlin Monastery has another alias – ‘the little Potala Palace ‘, so named because the whole monastery is in the traditional style with mysterious atmosphere.

Pay a visit to a Tibetan village and family. Have yak butter lunch with local people.

This afternoon, you’ll visit the tranquil Shudu Lake in Pudacuo National Park.It is located in one of the most biologically-diverse regions of the world. While the region comprises only 0.7 percent of China’s land area, it contains more than 20 percent of the country’s plant species, about one-third of its mammal and bird species and almost 100 endangered species.

Day 13 Departure from Shangrila

Sightseeing and Activities:Departure from Shangrila

Departure from Shangrila

Recommended Hotels

Destination 5 Star 4 Star 3 Star Hostels
Lijiang Lijiang Hilton Garden Inn  Wangfu Hotel Baisha Holiday Resort Local Hostel
Kunming   Crown Plaza Kunming City Centre  Wenhui Hotel  Baiyun Hotel Local Hostel
Dali Hilton Dali Resort And Spa  Landscape Hotel  Gnosis Hotel Local Hostel
Shangrila Shangrila Hotel  Zhaxidele Hotel Shenqu Hotel Local Hostel
Jianshui Linan Hotel  Zhu Family Garden Hotel Jianshui Hotel Local Hostel
Gejiu       Local Hostel

Service Included:

-Admission fees for all of the sightseeing spots listed in the itinerary;
-Meals as listed in the itinerary;
-Accommodation with breakfast as listed in the itinerary;
-Private English-speaking tour guide and vehicle for transfers & sightseeing;
-Service charge & government taxes;
-Luggage transfers between airports and hotels;
-Tibet travel permit and all other necessary permits to Tibet;
-Two bottles of mineral water each day.

Service Excluded:

-Any arrival and departure international airfares or train tickets;
-Chinese visa fees;
-Excess baggage charged by Airlines;
-Single room supplement;
-Tips to guides and drivers;
-Personal expenses and gratuities to service staff;
-Personal travel insurance;
-All optional programs;
-Domestic flight/train not listed in the itinerary. (We can provide you the domestic flight/train ticket booking service at the BEST discount price; please contact us our travel experts for the details.)

Travel Tips:

-Visitors are advised to always carry changes of clothing due to the large variations in temperature between day and night.

-The climate is relatively dry, so drink more water every day.

-Protecting oneself from strong UV radiation at high altitude.

-Protecting oneself from altitude sickness. Lessen the effects of altitude sickness, avoid strenuous exercise and have plenty of rest.
-Respect local customs , habits, and religious beliefs.
-Situated on the northern edge of the tropical zone, Xishuangbanna area is hot, humid and rainy; don’t forget to take an umbrella or a raincoat when go out.
-When take photos, please pay attention to your safety, do not shoot in dangerous areas.