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Language and History Tours China

The Victorian Department of Education and Early Childhood Development has stressed the increasing importance for Australian students to learn an Asian language in its publication "Languages Learning for the 21st Century: The Victorian Languages Strategy" published in 2010. In fact, the steadily growing trade volumes with China and other Asian nations provide a range of employment and business opportunities for Australians who are able to speak an Asian language. Travelling in China on a School Group Tour gives students the opportunity to get to know this amazing country and to practice their Mandarin in everyday life.

 

Study Tour Yunnan Southwest China including Shangrila (Tibetan Culture)
Plan C: Kunming – Dali – Lijiang – Shangrila - Kunming 14days 13nights

Day 01 Arrive Kunming by flight D
Met and transferred to your accommodation. Balance of day free.

Day 02 Kunming tour and night train to Dali B/L/D
Visit Stone Forest (Shilin in Chinese, 89 km, 1.5 hours), 80 ha, site of the fantastic limestone formations created during the Permian Era when the sea covered this area. Shilin is on the World Heritage List and managed by the traditional owners the Yi people. It is famous throughout China and unique to our world. At noon, Yiliang roast duck will be served as lunch – a real treat!. In the evening, take a night sleeper train to Dali.

 

Day 03 Arrival Dali B/L/D
Arrive at Dali in the morning, meet the local guide and transfer to have breakfast in a local restaurant. Then meet the school teachers and students of the host family, visit the school.

Day 04 Dali B/L/D
Full day at school to with language lessons.
Students Home-stay with your host family. Teachers accommodated at 3 star hotel, or with host family. Teachers can visit different host families each day for meals.

Day 05 Dali B/L/D
Full day at school to with language lessons.

Day 06 Dali B/L/D
Full day at school to with language lessons.

Day 07 Dali B/L/D
Today you say goodbye to your host families. Drive to Weishan County to visit Weibao Mountain, the origin of Nanzhao Kingdom which existed between 738 and 902. Then on to Weishan Old Town which has a history dating back more than 600 years. Lastly you visit, ‘Eastern Lotus Village’ which once featured as part of the famous ancient Silk Road. It is a picturesque, well-preserved Hui nationality (Chinese Muslim) village. Tonight’s accommodation is back in Dali itself

Day 08 Dali B/L/D
Drive to Xizhou Town to visit the local morning market of Zhoucheng Bai Nationality Village. Here you can see Bai ethnic folk houses and Tie Dyeing Workshop where this folk craft is still produced. Taste a, ‘Three Courses Tea’ to learn about local tea culture, then stroll through the ancient centre of Dali known as, Dali Old Town. The history of Dali Old Town can be traced back to the Tang Dynasty when Dali was the capital of Nanzhao Kingdom, home to Bai minority. The town, whose design is like a chess board, has four gates guarding the old entrances to the walled city from, east, south, west and the north. The city is sited between the Cangshan Mountains and the rather large Lake Erhai. Erhai Lake. Overnight Dali

Day 09 Dali – Lijiang by coach B/L/D
Drive north to Lijiang. Visit Lijiang Old Town, a lovely traditional town with beautiful wooden houses and crisscrossed by streams fed by mountain water. Lijiang is one of the best preserved ancient towns in China and is on UNESCO’s World Heritage List. Overnight.

Day 10 Lijiang tour and night train to Kunming B/L/D
Visit the Black Dragon Pool & Dongba Cultural Museum, its name comes because of the waters which sparkle like jade and are as clear as spring water. The entire park is a spectacular garden done in Chinese landscape design. Under the Suocui Bridge, a waterfall creates a constant roar as it cascades downstream. In the Dongba Museum, you can see the pictograph that shows the origins of the Naxi Nationality 1,000 years ago. Later visit Shuhe Ancient Town. Shuhe, also "Shaowu" in Naxi language, means "the village at the foot of the high hill". In the past, behind the village was a high hill named Jubao Hill, so people named the village after the hill. The Ancient Town of Shuhe is located 4 kilometers to the northwest of the Ancient City of Lijiang. Its central part covers an area of about 5 square kilometers. In 1997, the Ancient Town of Shuhe was ranked as an important part of the Ancient City of Lijiang. Lastly visit Naxi village of Baisha. Baisha (White Sand) is located in the north of Lijiang. It is named because of the large amount of white sand on the earth’s surface there. According to history Baisha is the earliest place for the settlement of Naxi nationality after they entered Lijiang basin. This evening you are delivered to the railway station for a night sleeper train to Kunming.

Day 11 Lijiang – Shangri-la by coach B/L/D
Drive to Shangri-la. On route visit Tiger Leaping Gorge, which is said to be the deepest gorge in the world. From the top of the gorge you look down the steep sides to the fast moving Golden Sands (Jingsha) River. Time to walk down (and back up!) the well made stepped pathway to the new viewing deck which is right down at the river itself. Continue the drive and you wind up to the high Tibetan Plateau. Upon arrival, check in the hotel. In the evening visit Zhongdian old town with its streets of Tibetan design houses. Also time to join locals in the old square for their nightly dance.

Day 12 Shangri-la tour and night train from Lijiang to Kunming B/L/D
Morning visit to Songzanlin Tibetan Buddhism Monastery, which is 5 km from the town centre. Construction began in 1679 and was completed in 1681. It is said that the Fifth Dalai Lama chose the site of the monastery through divination and named it "Gedan Songzanlin Monastery". In 1724, during the reign of Emperor Yongzheng in the Qing Dynasty, the monastery was renamed the "Guihua Monastery". During its time of greatest prosperity, there were more than 3,000 monks in the temple, now there are still 700 monks living inside. From here we visit a Tibetan family visit with lunch. In the afternoon drive back down to Lijiang to connect with a night sleeper train to Kunming.

Day 13 Kunming B/L/D
Arrive in Kunming where you are met and transferred to your accommodation. After a short period of free time you then visit Green Lake Park, the largest park downtown. Later, we visit Guandu Ancient Town which was built in 1180. Lastly, a walk around the Golden Horse & Jade Peacock Archway where local people enjoy themselves by flying kites and skating.

Day 14 Departure Kunming B
Transfer to airport for your departure flight.

Tour costs will Includes:
* Relevant airfares
* Sleeper trains: Kunming/Dali and Lijiang/Kunming
* Accommodation as shown in the program (the student stay in the multi share rooms, teachers stay in single rooms
* The meals as shown in the program (students have meals with host family during the home-stay, teacher will have meals by themselves during students’ home-stay or the teacher can go to different host families.
* Admission charges where applicable as shown in the tour description
* Private clean and air-conditioned transportation for land transportation
* Guide & driver for the land tour
* Two bottles of mineral water per person per touring day
* Service charges for baggage handling between airport and hotel
* Government taxes & Service charge

Does not include:
* Personal consumption
* Visa fee
* Tips for driver, guide and porter