Yunnan Discovery

Price from
US$ 2,600
12 Days / 11 Nights
462 km
Tour Code
Next departure
Number of Cycling Days7
Average Distance Per Day: 68
150 Km
Average Climbing Per Day: 1235
2,250 m
Total Cycling Distance462 kilometres
Bike HireMountain Bike: US$ 185
Single SupplementUS$ 425
Client Rating (based on 12 reviews)

About this Cycle Tour

Vibrant and diverse are words that perfectly describe China’s southern province of Yunnan. Graced with spectacular natural landscapes, multicultural inhabitants, and fresh mountain air, Yunnan is the perfect mix of great cycling and local flavor. Home to both famous landscapes and landmarks, like Shangri-La and Tiger Leaping Gorge, to lesser known sites like the karst terraces of Bai Shui Tai, Yunnan is both a stunning and fascinating exploration of China's treasures beyond the Great Wall!

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Day 1

We meet at Shangri-La Airport and transfer to our hotel. We will visit the spectacular Ganden Sumsanling Monastery, built at the instruction of the fifth Dalai Lama in the 17th century and then have a Tibetan welcome dinner.

Day 2

After a bike fitting, we ride around scenic Napa Lake. After lunch, the rest of the day you are free to explore this Tibetan town.

Day 3

We depart Shangri-La with a short morning transfer to start riding outside the town. We climb up and down through valleys and across mountains with spectacular scenery and arrive in Bai Shui Tai in late afternoon.

Day 4

We have a few short climbs and rolling sections in the morning and are rewarded with views of Haba Mountain towering above a beautiful valley. Then we head down to the Naxi village of Haba for lunch and continue riding towards the Yangtse River Valley. When we reach Yonke village, we turn to Tiger Leaping Gorge and cycle through one of the deepest and most dramatic gorges in the world.

Day 5

A rest day to explore the the famous Tiger Leaping Gorge of the Yangtze River. Cycle or hike, or do both!

Day 6

We have an easy 12 km cycle back through the gorge again towards the Yangtze ferry where we will cross the river and then start a 30 km steady climb of 1,500 metres! Some undulating hills with long downhills takes us to Blue Moon Valley. We stop here and transfer to Lijiang.

Day 7

We take morning transfer into the heart of rural Yunnan. We ride over a pass, descend to a valley, and ride along the ‘Old Tibet 214 highway’ to Shaxi where we overnight at a wonderfully local courtyard hotel.

Day 8

We rest today in the interesting town of Shaxi. This old town nestled in a valley is a perfect place to explore the surrounding villages and countryside.

Day 9

We start with another beautiful day of riding on the once very busy tea horse caravan route. We follow the Heihui River and pass through villages to Liantie Town. We end the day in Xia Shan Kou where we can soothe our sore muscles in the famous hot springs.

Day 10

On our last riding day, we head to the historic town of Dali, cycling along a flat paved road between the towering Canshan Mountain range and Er Hai Lake.

Day 11

We take a bus to Kunming and overnight there. The rest of the day is free to explore the city before we meet again to have a farewell meal together.

Day 12

Day free until onward flight.

Elevation Profiles

Day 2 - Shangri-La Loop Ride 25km. +315m / -315m.
Day 2 - Shangri-La Loop Ride 25km. +315m / -315m.


The trip through Yunnan was breathtaking and SpiceRoads provided the itinerary and support to make the best of the trip, really seeing amazing landscapes and sights at the right pace and feeling more part of the locality. The guide and drivers were knowledgeable, very friendly and flexible to the different fitness levels of riders on the tour, so that everyone got to enjoy themselves. Rented bicycles were all in excellent working condition. We were well fueled throughout. Accommodation was great and food selected was authentic, giving a good sense of the unique cuisine of the region.

Oliver SpaldingOctober 2019

The most incredible scenery I have ever experienced on a bicycle. This trip should be on every cyclist bucket list.

Gary DoolittleSeptember 2018

Tony, our tour guide, was great and attended to every need. The trip was a close look at old and modern China. It was a foodie delight.

Rick LancasterSeptember 2018

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