Please help with itinerary

May 16th, 2015, 07:19 AM
Original Poster
Join Date: May 2015
Posts: 9
Please help with itinerary

Arriving Beijing on Nov. 9, departing from Hong Kong on Dec. 1., traveling solo, first time in China:

Tentative itinerary:
Nov. 9 - Nov 13: (4 nights) Beijing
Nov. 13 - Nov. 16: Xian - 3 nights too much? Should I take the train/sleeper train/fly to Xian?
Nov. 16 - Nov. 18: Lijiang - take the train from Xian to Lijiang or fly?
Nov. 18 - Nov. 21: Dali - how to get from Lijiang to Dali)
Nov. 21 - not sure where to stay
Nov. 22 - Nov. 25: 3 nights in Yuangyang. Not sure how to get to Yuangyang from Dali or wherever I will be on Nov. 21.
Nov. 25 - Nov. 27: Kunming. Not sure how to get from Yuangyang to Kunming.
Nov. 27 - fly from Kunming to Hong Kong.

Is the above itinerary logical/efficient use of time?
I have airline ticket to Beijing and from Hong Kong to USA, will hire local guide/join day tour where necessary, open to suggestion. Thanks in advance for your help.
1dragonlady is offline  
May 16th, 2015, 07:45 AM
Join Date: Feb 2006
Posts: 24,453
Forget the local guide, get some guidebooks.

Four nights, especially with jet lag, might be a bit light for Beijing, but it also depends on how the pollution is doing.

I would (have) take the night train to Xi'an - get soft sleeper tickets. (See )

Can you fly into Lijiang now? If so, I would fly, unless you want to visit Chengdu on the way. I took the bus from Lijiang to Dali.

Can't help with Yuangyuang.
thursdaysd is offline  
May 17th, 2015, 08:27 PM
Join Date: Jul 2011
Posts: 427
What does 4 nights mean for Beijing? If it is 4 full days then ok. Otherwise cut a day from Xian and add to Beijing. Trains from Beijing to Xian are quite popular. There are good night trains if you can handle sleeping on a train (with deluxe soft sleepers - private sleeper for 2 with your own toilet), as well as high speed day trains.
There are no trains from Xian to Lijiang. You'd have to go trough Kunming. This will take forever (see schedule here Better to fly this one. Not sure about direct flights to Lijiang either. Check on
From Lijiang to Dali you have the bus or train. It is not too long a ride.
To and from Yuanyang, bus is the way.
If you want cheap flights from Kunming to HK, check
You need to work on your Yunnan itinerary in more details to see how you will fil these days. You seem to stay a lot of time in Dali and Yuanyang. You could spend more in Lijiang if you plan to do the Tiger Leap Gorge or go to Shangrila or Lugu lake.
nothing wrong with hiring a local guide once in a while. It really depends on your travel style.
JPDeM is offline  
May 18th, 2015, 11:31 AM
Join Date: Apr 2003
Posts: 507
It's been almost five years, but we flew into Lijang through Kumming. From Lijang we were able to arrange for a private driver to get to Dali. That worked well as we were able to stop when we wanted.
internetwiz is offline  
Jun 6th, 2015, 07:54 PM
Join Date: Dec 2006
Posts: 20,430
As thursdaysd said, some good guidebooks will prove a great advantage.

And while it depends on what YOU want to see and experience, I agree that 4 nights is very little for a first visit to Beijing.

Three nights is NOT too much for Xi'an. It could be on the short side....
kja is offline  

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