We traveled with Wild China from Jinghong to Shangri-La. In other words, we followed the ancient "Tea and Horse" road, which links up with the Silk Road in Tibet. The trip was pretty amazing. First, it was well organized, and our guide, Jeff Fuchs, was incredibly knowledgeable and funny. Our first Chinese guide, Michael, was also super-organized, and the second one quite helpful. We learned everything you can possibly want to know about the origins of tea and how it became as important as silk for commerce in China and Central Asia. Our hotels were luxurious and gorgeous, the food was quite good - including Western-style breakfasts. We pushed for more vegetables and more vegetables we got. We visited tea farmers, pagodas, anciens quarters in old town. We went up mountains, went down beautiful landscapes and finally, made it to Shangri-La where a brand new monastery complex rivals with the one in Lhasa. The only hitch to the trip was our flight out of Shangri-La, which materialized only some 7 hours late, so that we missed our connection in Kunming and then had to rebook our international flight. It was none of Wild China's fault and the Chinese airline took care of us, but if do grab flight insurance if you travel inside China and need to make international connections. Overall, a WONDERFUL EXPERIENCE!
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