Kangding Experience (Road Trip)

West Sichuan - China

Only ฿ 22,800 per week!

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Leave your comfort zone behind, hit the road to natural and cultural discovery! Push yourself to explore new places, hike, meet people and try new things.

Your Road Trip starts in Kangding, visits Xinduqiao and ends in Chengdu. You’ll be challenged to meet and greet people from another fascinating culture and try traditional food popular with the locals. Expect to fall in love with the natural beauty and peace of it all. What you discover will create everlasting memories and inspire you!

Culture
Learning
Leisure
Community Engagement
Physical Demand

Program Description

Starting from Chengdu or our Panda Reserve you will explore several of the highlights of the west of the Sichuan province.

Explore Kangding, the largest city and capital of Ganzi Tibetan Prefecture. Get a first taste of Tibetan style food here. Take the chance to hike to 4000m above sea level, see snow mountain, endless grasslands, and colorful lakes, watch the amazing Golden Mountain sunset, have a peek at Tibetan culture, try traditional Tibetan food, stay in a Tibetan style guesthouse, and visit the famous Tagong temple.

Back in Chengdu, enjoy the hustle and bustle of a big cities’ diverse nightlife to round off your trip.

Aims & Objectives

  • Take you on a journey through the beautiful valleys and grasslands of the region
  • Gain new perspectives and introduce a new culture and people to you
  • Present you with an opportunity to admire and revere natural beauty
  • Provide an introduction and insight into Tibetan culture, customs and their way of life

Schedule

Monday

  • Breakfast in Chengdu or the Panda Reserve, depending on your previous program or if you just arrived
  • Travel by bus to Kangding City (the journey is approx. 7 hours from Chengdu). Lunch on the bus
  • Arrive around 15:00, check in at the hostel
  • Visit a Tibetan style temple (An jue Temple)
  • Dinner: Traditional Tibetan food
  • Walk around Kangding City along its famous river
Stay overnight in the hostel in Kangding

Tuesday

  • Start with an early breakfast and leave into the mountains as early as 07:00 in the morning. This may vary depending on weather conditions.
  • Visit Zheduo Mountain for a stunning view on the valley and Kangding City
  • Lunch
  • Go by car to the best viewpoint on the Konka Snow Mountain (Zi Mei Ya Kou)
  • Watch the famous sunset on the ‘Golden Mountain’
  • Visit Shangmuju
  • Dinner
Stay overnight in a home stay in a traditional Tibetan house

Wednesday

  • Breakfast
  • Travel by Car to “Photographers’ paradise” (Xinduqiao town)
  • Lunch: Picnic
  • Travel on by Car to Tagong. See Grasslands, Traditional Tibetan temples and buildings.
  • Back to Kangding City
  • Dinner: Traditional Tibetan food
Stay overnight in the hostel in Kangding

Thursday

  • Breakfast
  • Visit the famous Lover’s lake (Yajia lake)
  • Admire Yulin snow mountain. Chinese mythology says a goddess lives here!
  • Lunch
  • Visit a natural hot spring (entry optional, cost not included). You can bathe there.
  • Visit a local museum to learn about Tibetan culture, language, clothing, food and historical figures (Gānzī Prefecture Tibetan Cultural Heritage Museum)
  • Dinner
Stay overnight in the hostel in Kangding

Friday

  • Breakfast
  • Travel by bus back to Chengdu City
  • Lunch
  • Some relaxation time after the journey
  • Visit the ‘East Music Park’, a creative part of Chengdu filled with variety of small cafes, art exhibits artist stores. There’s even a good chance for live music!
  • Dinner (not included)
Stay overnight in the hostel in Chengdu

Saturday

  • If this is the last week of your program (around Chengdu) it’s time for you to say goodbye. Otherwise stay in Chengdu to connect to your next program.

   Note:   This schedule can be changed and/or amended depending on weather conditions, local conditions and unforeseen circumstances.

Participant Criteria & Requirements

Standard Requirements

Minimum age:

Maximum age:

Minimum English level: Basic

CRB required: No

Passport copy required: No

Resume copy required: No

Required qualification: None

Additional Requirements

  • This program takes you to high altitudes. If you experienced altitude sickness before, be cautious.

Additional Equipment

  • Mountain weather is very unpredictable and therefore waterproof shoes or hiking boots, rain jackets/coats etc., are recommended
  • During winter the weather is quite cold and hence warm clothes are a must.
  • Bathing clothes (optional)

Location

A route from Kangding  to Xinduqiao to Chengdu that takes you on a journey of discovery. Along the road trip you will have a chance to see snow mountain, endless grassland, colorful lakes, watch the amazing Golden Mountain sunset, get a peek at Tibetan culture, try traditional Tibetan food, stay in a Tibetan style Guesthouse, and visit the famous Tagong temple. It's a combination of natural & cultural experience.

About the Accommodation

Along the route you will have overnight stays in hotels/guest houses, etc. More information can be found inside the schedule.

Food Arrangements

Mostly Chinese or Tibetan style dishes (vegetarian and fish) will be served during the trip.

Facilities

Along the route – but not at all times – there are ATMs and small local stores. Please make sure you have enough money with you before starting the trip.

Activities & Events

No scheduled activities outside the program.

Sights & Surroundings

You’ll be on a busy schedule.

Transportation

From this location we provide free transport to your next program at the following location(s):

  • Chengdu
  • Panda Reserve
  • Ya'an

Quick Facts

Name: People’s Republic of China

Population: 1.37 billion

Capital: Beijing

Language: Standard Chinese

Currency: Renminbi (Yuan) (CNY)

Time zone: CST (UTC +8)

Country Information

China covers approximately 9.6 million square kilometers making it the 2nd largest country by land area. It is not only the country with the largest population in the world but it is also one of the largest economies laying claim to being the world’s largest exporter and 2nd largest importer of goods.

It is a country of incredible cultural history boasting one of the earliest ancient civilisations dating back to around 2800 BC. Its landscape is equally rich in diversity, ranging from its forest steppes, its deserts in the north and subtropical forests in the south to its 14,500km long stretch of Pacific Ocean coastline. All of this makes China an incredible and exciting place to be, both in what it has to offer today and the story of its past.

Climate

Due to the vast expanse of land that China covers both in terms of longitude and latitude, the climate varies greatly from place to place. Generally, the climate pattern in China is characterised by dry seasons and wet monsoons. The rainy seasons mainly span from May to september but this pattern is less consistent in the some areas such as the dry northwest.

The difference in season causes a pronounced disparity in temperatures between winter and summer. Whilst the summer offers warm temperatures almost everywhere, the winter can cause temperatures to drop significantly, especially in the northern areas of China.

The Monsoon

The southern provinces start to experience the monsoons first, starting in April and May. The winds start to blow north in June meaning that northern provinces receive the rains around July and August, and the rains start to come to an end in September and are generally completely over in October. The northwest of China is the only area that avoids the monsoon climate.

Culture

China is one of four great ancient civilizations with 3,600 years of written history, and its culture both past and present is incredibly profound. Whilst Chinese cultural identity has many common, unifying elements, it is a country that represents 56 ethnic minority groups, the largest of which is the Han Chinese (900 million people), with other groups including the Tibetans, Mongols, Naxi etc. The significance of this is that each group to an extent creates their own culture and so within the vast expanse of China, depending on where you are, cultural variety is plentiful and there to be explored!

The country is currently ruled by The Chinese Communist Party. It is officially atheist, but is slowly and surely becoming more tolerant towards the practice of religion. The five official religions in China are Buddhism, Taoism, Islam, Catholicism and Protestantism. Due to the fact that it is only in recent years that tolerance of religion has made any progress, the practice of other religions is not formally recognised, although are often tolerated especially in the case of ancient Chinese beliefs. Currently about a quarter of the population practice Taoism, Confucianism and other traditional religions.

Gastronomy

There are 8 different styles of traditional Chinese cuisine, and traditional food can be found everywhere in China. Other styles adopted into Chinese cuisine and that might be found in China include Singaporean, Malaysian, Indonesian, Indian and American cuisine.

The staple foods used in Chinese cooking include exactly what you would expect: rice, noodles, and vegetables with sauces and seasonings.

The attitude regarding food in China is generally “waste not, want not” meaning that it not just uses a wide variety of both plants and animals, but every part of these plants and animals are used in some way. For westerners this might mean that there are a few things on the menu that you may not be used to and might want to avoid.

Due to the scale of the country, it isn't surprising that each area of China has a unique style of cooking and the ingredients very much depend on the natural agricultural produce of the specific region. For example the south of China uses far more rice than the north, where wheat is its main ingredient, a reason why noodles and dumplings are much more common. Southern food is also typically more spicy than that of the north.

Common Chinese dishes include: Sweet and Sour Pork, Gong Bao Chicken, Ma Po Tofu, Wontons, Dumplings, Chow Mein, Peking Roasted Duck and Spring Rolls

Transportation

Like its economy, China’s transportation network has rapidly expanded over recent years and now houses the longest road network in the world as well as the busiest train network

Air

Although the most expensive means of transportation, it is by far the most convenient and can save a lot of time travelling the longer distances across China.

The main ports of air travel are Beijing, Shanghai, Guangzhou and Hong Kong although all major cities within the country host domestic flights.

Rail

This is the primary mode of transportation in China and most major cities have their own metro systems. As well as its standard vast rail network, China boasts over 7000 km of high-speed rail.

Bus

For local travel, buses are a very affordable way of getting around and a good alternative mode of transport where metro is not available.

Taxi

Taxis are generally cheap and easy to find. Meters are generally used in towns and cities. If your driver does not want to use a meter, common for longer trips out of town, be sure to negotiate a price before the journey.

Other Alternatives

Motor pedicabs, pedicabs and motorbikes can all be found in China and are a cheap way of getting around. We recommend you set a price before using this form of transport.

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