In addition to “Trekking in the Majesty of the Tibetan Plateau, A Qigong and Wilderness Adventure,” LittlePo and Karen team up again to offer another magical fall trip which consists of day hikes, bike tours, cultural activities, and qigong practice in the beautiful and diverse Yunnan province, south of the clouds. Oct 28-Nov 10, 2012. We had a successful trip in this lovely place in spring 2011 (check out our photo album) and we can’t wait to share this awesome experience with more friends!
Karen will be the one teaching Qigong lessons and leading Qigong practices. Scroll down you can read more about Qigong in the section “A few words about Qigong” and of course Karen’s website (http://www.qidancing.com) provides more in-depth information!
Yunnan, literally means “south of the clouds,” is located in the southwestern corner of China. The climate of Yunnan is usually mild and pleasant. Its capital city, Kunming, is well known by the nickname “spring city.” Yunnan is situated in a mountainous area and has exceptional geographical features: karsts topography, deep mountain gorges, and distinctive canyons. In addition, Yunnan contains extraordinary cultural diversity as it is home to 25 different minority groups, and is home to one of the last matriarchal societies at LuGu Lake. Friendly people living a simple life, surrounded by amazing scenery of high mountains and countless lakes, makes Yunnan a unique paradise. Many believe that the utopia described in a best-selling book, The Lost Horizon, was inspired by Yunnan.
Our journey starts at Kunming, follows the railroad to Dali, and arrives in Lijiang to further explore some signature northwestern areas, including the stunning Tiger Leaping Gorge and Laojunshan National Park. In addition to exploring the mystical limestone formations, scenery and featured hikes of Kunming, we will also take in its local culture, culinary style, and history. Our tour will focus on the traveling through and staying in the historic sections of towns of the region, where you can re-live the era of Dali kingdom among real residents. Trekking along the Tiger Leaping Gorge, one cannot help but be awed by the sheer cliffs and mountain peaks overhead. The unknown Laojunshan National Park is like an unrefined diamond – its pristine natural beauty is enticing and waiting to be explored. Qigong instruction and daily practice will be offered throughout this mystical, exciting and delicious adventure.
Dates: October 28-November 10, 2012
Duration: 14 days
Activity: Hiking, Qigong, Cultural Events
A few words about Qigong:
Qigong practice is a powerful way to both cultivate your own health and vitality, as well as develop your spirit and soul. In China, we will be using Qigong practices to tap into the teachings of the vast Lands of the Far East.
China, the home of a most powerful system of Chinese Medicine, of Qigong, of Daoism and many mystical arts, is born from its Lands, its mountains, rivers, trees, gorges, plateaus, and is channeled through its people. Qigong is one simple and profound practice to develop our innate abilities to more fully receive from our environment, our Earth – both energy and information – Qi. Come receive, experience, and explore in ancient, yet ever-evolving magnificent terrain!
Tentative Itinerary for Discovering the Lost Horizon, an Active Journey to the Heart of Yunnan
Day 1: Our Yunnan trip starts in Kunming, the capital city of the province. With pleasant weather year-round, this city has won the nickname of “the spring city.” Many westerners also refer it as “Seattle of China.” While in Kunming, we will visit Stone Forest National Park and explore the stunning karst topography and taste the signature Yunnan dish, “bridge-crossing rice noodles.”
Day 2-3: We will arrive in Dali old town in the evening of Day 1. On Day 2 and Day 3, we’ll embark on a bike tour circumnavigating the serene Erhai Lake. In the evening of Day 2, we’ll stay in the little fishing town, Shuanglang, which is located at the northeast corner of the lake. During this bike tour, we’ll have the opportunity to interact with local Bai minority folks, and if you dare you can try the signature dish of Bai cuisine (slightly roasted pork with the specialty dipping sauce.)
Day 4-10: We’ll take a morning train from Dali to Lijiang. Lijiang is an important hub of the ancient Tea Horse Trail. Many minority groups reside here, though the majority of the people are from the Naxi group. Recently Lijiang has attracted countless tourists because of its central location to many adventure destinations, and therefore this city has a somewhat commercialized appearance. We’ll stay in the neighboring and more low-key old town called Shuhe and use Shuhe as our base camp to explore the following three side tours (each side tour typically takes 2 days):
- Laojunshan National Park. You might call this place the Zion of China. Both places have red rocks and display stunning land formations; yet they also have some distinct differences. Because of the interesting relative locations of mountains here in Laojunshan, in fall/winter months, people can witness the legendary three sunsets in a day. The Lisu minority group also resides here, and, in the evenings you might have the opportunity to dance with them and taste their homemade rice wine. We’ll hike in this magical place and explore the special scenery and cultural activities.
- Shaxi old town and Stone Treasure Mountain. Shaxi was also a very important commercial hub of the ancient Tea Horse Trail. Yet unlike Lijiang, this city has not become a touristy “adventure hub.” Once the money-making salt wells dried out, this town has kept much of its historical authenticity. We’ll walk on the ancient stone bridge and streets and visit the near-by Stone Treasure Mountain to play with wild monkeys.
- If you come this far to Lijiang, you have to check out the Tiger Leaping Gorge. Yunnan is well-known for its steep mountain cliffs and deep-carved canyons. This geological signature of Yunnan had made traveling between villages difficult and therefore cultivated huge regional and cultural differences. Tiger Leaping Gorge is the representative location to witness the magical work of mother earth. We will hike along the river and awe the contrast between sharp peaks and ragging rapids.
Day 11-14: We will arrive at our final destination, Shangri-la. The majority of the people in this town are Tibetan. Before we enter Shangri-la, numerous stupas will welcome us along the road and soon we will see Tibetan-style houses decorated by prayer flags. We will have chance to take a stroll on the cobble stone paved streets in the old town and visit a Tibetan monastery and museum to learn about Tibetan Buddhism and medicine. Most importantly, we will take hikes to explore the famous Meili Snow Mountain, which is a sacred peak in the hearts of locals. We then can wind down and take back unforgettable memories with us back home.
Deposit: A $500 deposit is required to reserve your spot. 50% of your payment is due 75 days before your trip (August 14th 2012). Full payment is due 45 days before your trip (September 13th 2012).
If you cancel 60 days or more in advance of your trip: $200;
If you cancel 30-59 days in advance: $50% of trip tuition.
If you cancel within 30 days or less: 100% of trip tuition.
You can pay through paypal here: