4 Days Jianshui Yuanyang Rice Terraces Photography Tour
|Tour Length & Outline:|
|4 Days & 3 Nights|
Kunming - Shilin (1N) - Yuanyang (1N) - Jianshui (1N) - Kunming
|Best Time to Visit:|
|November to March & July to September|
|Very leisure tour; zero physical demand|
Amazing Sunset in Yuanyang Rice Terraces
Explore the Old Houses in Jianshui Ancient Town
Stone Forest in Kunming, Yunnan
Taking our hand-picked 4 days trip to Yuanyang and Jianshui, you will not only be impressed by the marvelous landscape of rice terraces in Yuanyang, but also deeply explore the ancient houses that well-preserved in Jianshui Ancient Town.
As a world heritage site, Yuanyang Rice Terraces is an amazing creature made by the local Hani ethnic group. Changing vividly through the year, Yuanyang Rice Terraces offers different scenes in different seasons, like it is green in spring when rice started to grow, golden in autumn when the rice ripens and the terraces are filled with water in winter, reflecting the sky.
As one of the national famous historic and cultural towns of China, Jianshui is an ancient town in Honghe Prefecture of Yunnan Province. With a history of over 1200 years, Jianshui Ancient Town enjoys a great reputation as a Museum of Ancient Buildings and Residential Houses in China.
Best Time to Visit
There are two best seasons to visit Yuanyang Rice Terraces and Jiangshui Ancient Town in a year.
The most recommended season is from November to the next March when the rice terraces are filled with water. The terraces all over the hills are just like thousands of mirrors reflecting the blue sky. And the sunrise and sunset are amazing that reflected by the water-filled rice terraces. It is good to taking pictures when the lines between the water in the terraces and the ridges of the fields are clear and beautiful.
The second best season to go is from July to September when it is the autumn harvest season. At this time, all the terraces are golden and yellow with rice.
During other months, it may be foggy sometimes for its wet climate. However, it is possible to visit Yuanyang Rice Terraces anytime during the year because of the subtropical climate.
- Explore unique Stone Forest;
- Attend sunrise and sunset at amazing Yuanyang Rice Terraces;
- Enjoy the Old Town of fabulous Jianshui;
- Visit secluded villages as Qingkou, Tuanshan and Xingmeng.
Day 1: Kunming - Stone Forest - Danuohei Village
In the morning, you will be picked up from your hotel in Kunming. First, you will enjoy a Yunnan Pu’er Tea Ceremony, during which you can not only taste the local Pu’er tea, but also learn about the interesting tea culture of China and the history of the Ancient Tea Horse Road.
Next, you will enjoy an authentic local Yunnan lunch before you arrive at Stone Forest. After lunch, we will drive to Stone Forest, the top attraction in Kunming city. You can enjoy the shaped stones at the lookouts.
After visiting Stone Forest, you will move on to Danuohei Sani Village, which is 25 km away from Stone Forest. Since the locals have kept a traditional lifestyle, you can see the traditional houses of Sani people that built by stones, get in touch with the local Sani ethnic people and explore the traditional belief and religion of the local Sani people.
- Drive about 115km for about 2 hours
- Altitude: Kunming (1895m), Stone Forest (700m), Danuohei Village (1900m)
- Shilin Local Hotel
Day 2: Shilin - Yuanyang
Yunyang Rice Terraces
Marvelous Sunset at Yuanyang Rice Terraces/p>
In the morning, we will drive about 300 kilometers (4.5 hours) to Yuanyang Scenic Area, one of the UNESCO World Heritage sites in Yunnan province. The first stop is the Bada rice terraces, from which you can get a great view over the gigantic terraced valley. Then, you will move on to the Qingkou Village. Next, you will visit Laohuzui, where you can enjoy the amazing sunset over the rice terraces if the weather permits. Because of the colorful sunset, Laohuzui is praised as a recommended stop for photographer enthusiasts.
After today’s tour, you will get dropped off at your hotel.
- Drive about 300 km for about 4.5 hours
- Altitude: Yuanyang (2000m)
- Yuanyang Local Hotel
- Breakfast, Lunch
Day 3: Yuanyang - Jianshui
Old Houses in Jianshui Ancient Town
Zhu's Family Garden in Jianshui Ancient Town
Today, you can get up very early to see the sunrise over the rice terraces at Duoyishu Village. Then, we will visit a local street market in Shengcun village. In the market, you can see many local people, especially ethnic minorities of surrounding villages, gather together to buy and sell kinds of local food and necessities during the day.
After visiting the market, we will drive about 130 kilometers to Jianshui. Before arriving at Jianshui, you will visit Tuanshan Village en route. As a world monument of architectural heritage, Tuanshan Village attracts lots of visitors from home and abroad to see the well-preserved old houses.
Afterwards, we will visit Zhu’s Family Garden, one of the highlights in Jianshui Ancient Town. Then, you can head to the Confucius Temple in the town, which is the second largest Confucius Temple in China.
- Drive 130 km for about 3.5 hours
- Altitude: Jianshui (2278m)
- Jianshui Local Hotel
- Breakfast, Lunch
Day 4: Jianshui - Kunming
The Treasure of Yunnan Provincial Museum
Before we get back to Kunming, we will visit a local tofu workshop in the morning. Since tofu is one of the most important food of this area, you can see how the locals make tofu in a traditional way.
Then, we will drive about 210 kilometers back to Kunming city. You will visit Xingmeng village en route to explore Mongolian culture in Yunnan. Upon your arrival in Kunming downtown, you will visit Yunnan Provincial Museum and Guandu Ancient Town.
After today’s tour, you will get dropped off at Kunming city center or Kunming Changshui Airport according to your schedule.
Option for the Evening:
Dynamic Yunnan Show is an original ethnic dance musical that directed by Yang Liping. You can get a unique “Yunnan Impression” from the show, which is a combination of folk dances and a fresh artistic concept. The show starts at 20:00 every day (except at and around the Spring Festival) and lasts for 1.5 hours.
- Drive 210 km for about 3.5 hours back to Kunming
- Altitude: Kunming (1895m)
- Breakfast, Lunch
Price Details & Guide
- Private transportation with skilled driver, including hotel pick-up and drop off; including gas, toll fee and parking fee etc.
- Lodging: one night in Shilin local hotel, one night in Yuanyang local hotel, and one night in Jianshui local hotel. All hotels with breakfast (as per chosen category; based on twin-bed room for 2 pax);
- Private English-speaking tour guide (1 tour guide from day 1 to day 4);
- Entrance ticket fees for all the sight spots listed in the itinerary;
- Meals authentic Chinese lunch as listed (3 Breakfasts, 4 Lunches);
- 2 bottles of local drinking water per person per day;
- Compensation fee for meals and accommodations for tour guide and driver when outside of Kunming;
- 24/7 English-speaking customer services;
- Government taxes.
- International and domestic flight/train to Kunming (Note: we accept the domestic flight/train tickets booking to Kunming from other cities in advance, check the updated ticket availibility and cost with your travel consultant);
- Meals that are not specified in the itinerary (Averagely a meal in the 3rdpole region cost 3~10USD per person);
- Tips and gratuities for the trip leader and driver;
- The expense of a personal nature like alcoholic beverages, laundry, phone call, etc;
- Optional activities and excursions not specified in the itinerary;
- Dynamic Yunnan Show discount tickets (please mention which category you prefer if of interest)
VIP – USD 72
Luxury – USD 54
Standard – USD 39
Budget – USD 27
- Destinations not listed in the program;
- China Entry visa fees;
- Personal Travel Accident Insurance;
Once we receive your tour deposit, which is followed by signing the contract, your reservation is secured with legitimacy. Our staff will reserve the accommodation, vehicle, site tickets, meals and more, and pay the deposit for our suppliers. So if you want to alter to another itinerary, you need to cover the deposit we've paid, while no service charge is needed if you make some changes on the itinerary you booked.
Cancellation and Refund Policy
If you cancel the tour beacuse of your personal issues, you will be liable to pay cancellation charges that are bounded by 3rdpoletour.com cancellation policy as follows:
1.) If you cancel the tour more than 30 days before the trip starts, you will forfeit 10% of the total land cost per person;
2.) If you cancel the tour 15-30 days prior to your trip start date, 20% of your total land tour cost will be forfeited as a cancellation fee.
3.) If you cancel the tour 7-15 days before the trip starts, you will forfeit 30% of land cost.
4.) If you cancel the tour 7 days prior to your tour start date, you will forfeit 50% of land cost.
5.) If you fail to show up or cancel at your scheduled arrival time without prior notice or later than that, you will forfeit 100% of the land cost.
If the tour has to be cancelled because of the natural disaster or the government restrictions that is beyond both parties control, we will charge only USD50 per person, this is just the service fee and larbor fee during the preparation. This is a rare occurrence!
The cancellation fee charged by 3rdpoletour.com will be kept under your name (person who contacted us) for a usable period of 2 years. Within the applicable period you can use it for next time or you can kindly pass your authority to any of your family, friends or colleagues to use by booking a tour with 3rdpoletour.com. A certifying email from you is necessary to pass the cancellation fee to others, but it is only applicable for private group.
Know Before your Go
This group tour is guaranteed to depart as soon as 2 people are booked. If there is no tour departing on your preferred date, you can also inquiry the tour and we will help you find more travelers to join in.
Eating is a big part of traveling. Traveling with 3rdpoletour you will experience the vast array of wonderful local food that is only available in the places we visit. We have most of the breakfast in the hotels except for the camping; for the long-driving and transportation day the lunches are included as well; the featured local flavor dinner is arranged as well in some places. Included breakfasts will usually be asian style consisting of noodles or congee (rice porridge) or bread and eggs, although in some remote areas the choice maybe very limited. Generally, the food in the plateau areas is worse than in the morden cities of the plains, but it's much cheaper, about 3~10 dollars one person one meal. No group dinner.
For the Meals not included in the trip price, we would like to leave you a choice of eating options, to give you the maximum flexibility in deciding where, when and what to eat. Our trip leader will be able to suggest favourite restaurants during your trip. Vegetarians will be able to find a range of different foods, although in some areas the choice may be limited.
In most of the 3rdpole area (Western Sichuan, Yunnan, Tibet, Qinghai, Xinjiang and Gansu) they might not be like what you are used to back home as service and efficiency can vary. In some areas we stay in simple local guest houses in stunning locations, and rooms are small and simple and there may only be shared toilet facilities and showers. But we guarantee to arrange the best local hotels for our guests. The accommodation condition of every night is shown on the itinerary description, please refer for the details.
All Sichuan group tours (of 4 people or more) are accompanied by one of our professional English-speaking trip leaders who are different from the tour guides you may book from most of the online China travel agencies. Our trip leaders are trained strictly and they are not allowed to take guests to commission shopping factories. All of them are our full-time staff and work 8 hours every day in our office to do the editing and website friendly design when they don't have the trip on the road. Not like most agencies who pay their guides and themselves with commision earnings, we put the cost of paying our guides a good wage straight into the tour price so they are happy and not reliant on guests spending money shopping to earn their own salaries. Thus they concentrate on your needs and being the best hosts to you that possibly can.
They know the areas like their backyards and have explored like hundreds of times. With a experience of more than ten years, everyone of them has served more than hundreds of guests from all over the world. They are responsible, trustworthy and have their own life experience and story to share which will add more fun and safety to your trip in the plateau highland.
Note: For the small group with 2 to 3 people, there is an experienced driver who can speak a little English, but no Trip leader.
We include all transportation during the trip except for the international flight or train, although you need to pay by yourself for the horse riding, cablecar, and more that are not included in the price quotation in some destinations.
We will be using a variety of types of vehicle on our trips, mainly depending on the number of your group. Land cruiser 4WD is the most popular vehicle in 3rdpole tourism that is suitable for rocky and bumpy road in off-the-bitten-path. Capacity of the vehicle is 4 passengers and bags can kept in the trunk. Most of our land cruiser are almost brand new. The van and mini-bus are mostly used for groups ranging from 5 to 15 people, and most of the vans and mini-buses are pretty new and in a very good condition. Buses are mostly used for bigger groups ranging from 20-40 people.
Our drivers are professional and always consider the safety and comfortable as the priority, although most of them don't speak English. It is our company policy to provice you with unlimited free drinking water, an air pillow and a headscarf for each one to make your driving more relaxing and comfortable.
Your trip leader is the one you could contact at the first place, should you need to contact us during a situation of dire need. If for any reasion you do not receive a satisfied answer, please call or email your travel consultant who organized the trip for you, and they will assist you 7/24. Our office number is 028-8522698, open 7/24.
Visa & Travel Pemit
Except Tibet, you can travel all of the destinations and cities of 3rdpole region with only a Chinese visa. For a visit to Tibet, we will apply for a Tibet travel permit for you in advance.
Tipping for your trip leader and driver is expected - though not compulsory - and shows an expression of satisfaction with them who have assisted you on your tour. Tipping is appreciated if they did an excellent job for you.
High Altitude Sickness
Average altitude in 3rdpole area is more than 2000M, and you may be worried about the altitude sickness. We prepare the medicine to reduce high altitude sickness symptoms. Please load this page to read the detailed information about the 3rdpole elevation and high altitude sickness.
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