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Our five nights at Guilin Ming Garden were great as well! It is certainly our favorite place in China. The apartment is remodeled, extremely clean and has a great view; having internet access is a nice touch and there is plenty of room for our entire family. After a long day of fun, it was relaxing to come home to delicious home cooked meals prepared by our nanny Mrs Huang.She made us feel right at home with her traditional Cantonese home cooked dinners: her normal dinner consist of soup, two meat dishes and two vegetable dishes; very much like the meals our Cantonese parents made for us when we were younger and the meals had brought back fond memories.
-Helen Lee

Minority Area Tour

Minority Area Tour

You will be fascinated by the flower bridges, architecture and unique customs of the Dong people. As you travel into a variety of minority ethnic regions, you will delve into and diverse social customs of these amazing minority groups, some of which have been left almost untouched by modern life. While traveling around these villages, you may find cafes or teahouses, which often carry local flare and are great places to learn more about the village and life in the area. Contact louie@lotustours.net to get started on this adventure into this little known region of China.

Tour Overview
Tour Code: LY-HA-MAT
Trip Duration: 12 days / 11 nights
Click below for: Tour Price / Accommodations
Guilin, Longsheng, SanJiang, Zhaoxing, Congjiang, Rongjiang, Kaili, Guiyang
Departure Dates: Please contact one of our experienced travel advisors for departure dates
Day 1 : Guilin
meals: N/A
Meet your tour guide at the Guilin Airport exit and you will be transferred to the Guilin Exhibition International Boutique Hotel for a relaxing stay.
Day 2 : Guilin
meals: B/L/D
Take a delightful visit to a local tea farm this morning as you learn and explore this integral aspect of traditional Chinese culture. You will enjoy some Guilin Rice noodle for your lunch in one of the local famous rice noodle restaurants. More than 700 years ago, the Italian traveler, Marco Polo, introduced spaghetti to Italy and then to all western countries. After your Guilin Rice noodle lunch, you won't be surprised why local people can have noodles every day and almost every meal. Explore the Reed Flute Caves this afternoon as you wonder at the amazing sites created these intricate formations. Enjoy the gorgeous views of beautiful backdrops created by the cool atmosphere and colorful lighting displays inside the caves as you pass by many fanciful shapes (don't forget to look for the Monkey King).
Day 3 : Guilin/Yangshuo/Guilin
meals: B/L/D
This morning, you will travel to Yangshuo by a private van and learn to make dishes of Kung-Pao chicken, Pot Sticker, and Egg Foo Yung at the cooking class. You will have the chance to eat the lunch you have created during the cooking class. After the lunch, enjoy a bamboo rafting trip on the Yulong River in afternoon. The Yulong River is a branch of the Li River and its scenery is considered even more beautiful than the scenery along the Li River. Your children will love the bamboo rafting on the Yulong River. You will be transferred back to Guilin later this afternoon and you can rest and regroup for your next adventure.
Day 4 : Guilin/Longsheng
meals: B/L
Today you will travel by private van for about 2 hours to reach Longsheng, which is known for its amazing terraced fields. During the 13th century the local Zhuang minority people constructed these coiling terraces which span a depth of between 1000 feet to 3600 feet above sea level. The terraces neatly divides the mountain into layers of water in the springtime, layers of green rice shoots in the summer; golden layers of rice during the fall season, and layers of frost during wintertime. You will visit the Longji (Dragon's Backbone) Terraces section along the winding mountainside. It received its name because the rice terraces resemble a dragon's scales, while the summit of the mountain range looks like the backbone of a dragon. Now, the Longji Rice Terraces cover an area of more than 15,000 acres. At your hotel, you will enjoy the birds-eye view of rice terraces. Then you will visit the Villages of Zhuang and Yao minority and experience the unique Chinese ethnic culture of styles, dress and varied social customs.
Day 5 : Longsheng/SanJiang
meals: B/L
This morning you will travel to SanJiang by a private van with about a one hour drive. You can experience and learn about the Dong Minority culture as you explore the Dong Village in Sanjiang, which features well-preserved residential homes within a charming natural landscape. In the Dong Village, you will see the landmark construction of a Drum Tower, and the Wind and Rain Bridge constructed with wood and bricks, which reflects the unique style and the wisdom of the Dong people. The bridge was built to provide a shelter for the people who work in fields. Every time when the chief of the village would beat the drum, villagers would stop their work and get together around the Drum Tower. The Drum Tower is always located in the center of a Dong Minority village and serves as the political and cultural center.
Day 6 : SanJiang/Zhaoxing
meals: B/L
This morning you will ride to Zhaoxing in order to explore more in-depth experiences within the Dong culture as you visit the Tang'an Dong village. The Dong minority culture features several unique components, including Wind-Rain Bridges (also known as Flower Bridges), Drum Towers and the beautiful songs of the Dong nationality. These beautiful flower bridges are named such because the bridges have pagoda-like, multi-tier pavilions with beautifully carved roof tiles engraved with flowers. The flower bridges are really covered walkways with railing and benches to take a seat and enjoy the scenery. It is a lovely place to be on a sunny or rainy day, while you sit on the bridge pavilion and chat with friends and enjoy the surrounding scenery. The bridges highlight the unique architecture of the Dong people, since every bridge built is done without a nail, any rivets or blueprints, though they boast masterpiece works with the wood columns, purlins, stools and intricate railings. This afternoon, you will get to explore the village of Zhaoxing -the largest Dong village, with more than 800 households and population of 5000. In the past, the head of the village divided people into five groups to simplify administration and built towers to serve as a symbol of good fortune and prosperity. The towers are a meeting place and a tool for transmitting information or alarms. During festivals and special meetings, villagers congregate in the lower pavilions of the tower, which is the tallest and most respected building, where they dance, listen to traditional folk songs or socialize. These drum towers have become symbols of the Dong minority and the five towers represent not only five different family clans, but also represent the qualities of kindness, politeness, intellect, righteousness and creditworthiness.
Day 7 : Zhaoxing
meals: B/L
This morning, you can visit Tang'an Dong village which has been called the biggest living museum of Dong Minority peoples and the "land of festivals" as well as the "cradle of ancient music". There are only about 160 households and a population of 800 people in this small village, which is surrounded by green mountains and overlapping terraces. You may feel like you have stepped back in time, as the community lives in very traditional ways, with the men plowing and the women who weave clothes in this natural setting. Next, take a 2 hour hike from Tang'an to Zhaoxing as you enjoy the gorgeous scenery of terraced paddy fields all around you and soak up the primitive beauty of this lovely locale. Tonight you will be free to explore Zhaoxing as you wish and enjoy an evening performance of Dong people's chorus songs.
Day 8 : Zhaoxing/Congjiang/Rongjiang/Danzhai
meals: B/L
This morning you can explore the Basha Miao village, which is an ancient village virtually untouched by modernized life. Basha residents still live in their wooden houses, practice centuries-old customs and have their own unique beliefs. Legend has it that the ancient ancestors of the Basha people immigrated from the heartland of China to this isolated mountainous region over 2,000 years ago. Like men of ancient dynasties, most Basha men wear their hair long. When the adult ceremony is held for a young man, he can keep it or shave most of it off, except the central part, which is coiled into a bun. All men wear indigo clothing, which has been made waterproof by egg whites mixture while being made. In this culture, a tree is planted whenever a baby is born; often it will be cut down to make the coffin when the person eventually dies. Cutting down ancient trees is forbidden in this village. You will have the opportunity to hike around the village today as you explore this fascinating culture. This afternoon, you will explore Huanggang Dong village and experience their daily life by visiting local families and spending time there. Villagers live in stilt houses, which are traditional folk residences in southwest China, since arable land is so valuable and scarce. You will also see flower bridges, drum towers, tie dye tanks and rice stands, showing everything here is authentic and true to the Dong character.
Day 9 : Danzhai/Kaili
meals: B/L
This morning, visit a local market and spend time exploring the streets in this small city as you learn more about areas that are off the beaten path. Later take a drive to Kaili, and then explore Shiqiao Miao village to see its traditional way of making paper from the tree bark. Next, visit the long skirt Miao village where over 100 Miao households have lived for generations with a tranquil and bucolic setting. Then visit Qingman short skirt Miao village (yes, it's a village of traditional clothing that are like "mini-skirts") except it is traditional dress. A welcome ceremony will be arranged and you will be greeted into the village and offered the traditional drink of block way wine.
Day 10 : Kaili
meals: B/L
AM: visit Datang Miao village to see their wooden aquatic granary and experience the well- known traditional dance performances and wonderful music. This afternoon, hike 30 minutes from Shuidian to Paika to visit a local Miao family noted for making Lusheng (bamboo reed pipe), which is the Miao people's traditional musical instrument. Enjoy a dinner made with Miao people's cuisine, sour soup fish in hotpot.
Day 11 : Kaili/Guiyang
meals: B/L
This morning, take a drive to Guiyang-the capital city of Guizhou province. En route you will get to visit Qingyan, an ancient town with distinctive cultural features of the Ming and Qing Dynasties. It is a small town, but it is a spectacular city, as it has been built completely of stone, as a result of the local landscape and geology. It has a well-planned architectural style, with many stone arches and city walls and though it is a small town it has an influential local culture. This afternoon, you will enjoy a city tour in Guiyang, which includes the Jiaxiu pavilion, which is the landmark building of Guiyang. You will also get to visit Hongfu Buddhist monastery, which is located on top of Qianling Mountain, with many breathtaking scenery.
Day 12 : Guiyang/next destination city
meals: B
After your breakfast in the hotel, you will be transferred to the Guiyang Airport for your return flight home or to the next destination city in China.

REMARKS:

    B = Breakfast      L = Chinese Lunch                D = Chinese Dinner
    CA= Air China     CZ=China Southern Airline     MU=China Eastern Airlines
Tour Prices:
Valid: Aug 01, 2017 - Mar 31, 2018
1 Person 2-5 Persons 6-9 Persons 10 Persons Hotel Single Supplement
Standard Class / $2220.00 Booking Tour $1499.00 Booking Tour / $499.00
Note: child price is 80% of adult price.


Accommodations:
City Standard Class Deluxe Class Superior Class
Guilin . Guilin Exhibition International Boutique Hotel N/A N/A
Longji . PingAn Hotel, Longji N/A N/A
SanJiang . DongXiang Guest House, SanJiang N/A N/A
Zhaoxing . Zhaoxing Hotel N/A N/A
Danzhai . Wanda Jin Danzhai Hotel N/A N/A
Kaili . Kaili Grand Metro Park Hotel N/A N/A
Guiyang . Hilton Garden Inn Guiyang N/A N/A

Hotel Information:
Hotel Indoor Pool Outdoor Pool Gym Safe Box Refrigerator Hair Dryer Kitchen
Guilin Exhibition International Boutique Hotel   √     √   √   √   √
N/A            
N/A            
PingAn Hotel, Longji            
N/A            
N/A            
DongXiang Guest House, SanJiang   √     √   √   √   √
N/A            
N/A            
Zhaoxing Hotel             √
N/A            
N/A            
Wanda Jin Danzhai Hotel             √
N/A            
N/A            
Kaili Grand Metro Park Hotel       √   √   √   √
N/A            
N/A            
Hilton Garden Inn Guiyang       √   √   √   √
N/A            
N/A            

Inclusions

  • Private transfer of Guilin/Longsheng/SanJiang/Zhaoxing/Congjiang/Rongjiang/Danzhai/Kaili/Guiyang;
  • Airport/hotel/airport (or train station) transfer as listed in itinerary;
  • All listed sightseeing and tour programs with private English-speaking tour guide and private van or bus with driver.
  • Hotels and meals as stipulated in itinerary.

Exclusions

  • International airfare of to Guilin, Guiyang/home;
  • Some meals.
  • Tipping to tour guide and driver.
  • Chinese visa.
  • Expenses of a personal nature.

Terms & Conditions:

  • Deposit:A $500 per person non-refundable deposit needs to be sent to us within one week in order to guarantee the above quotes.
  • Balance:Balance is due 60 days before departure.
  • Airfare:Airfare is due at time of ticket issuance.
  • Terms & Conditions:Our terms are listed on our homepage www.lotustours.net, located on the bottom of the page, right above "Resources".
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