Day 1: Trekking the upper part of the gorge, the 28-Bend trail, and descend to arrive at Tea Horse Hostel to overnight.
Day 2: Trek the middle part of the gorge, descend to middle rapids to see the galloping Jinsha River, trek to Walnut Grove Garden, transferred to visit the gorge’s upper part, chauffeured back to Lijiang.
lunch in hostel
Qiaotou Town is about 99 km away from Lijiang city, it harbors the main passenger station where daily coaches and minicabs deliver hikers to the ticket station to enter the upper gorge. After paying the admission fee for the gorge, you’ll be delivered to the Qiaotou Primary School to start your hiking.
trails of the upper gorge
The upper part of the gorge is notable for hosting the narrowest walking trail in the entire trekking route. Most of the paths are either roughly hewed out of cliffs or shaky bridges built with planks. Plodding uphill, you’ll be almost constantly sandwiched by the craggy mountain on one side and the precipitous cliffs on the other, which can be simultaneously haunting and thrilling.
After about a 2-hour trekking, you’ll reach the first hub on the route—Naxi Family Hostel and have lunch there. After a short rest, you’ll head towards the notoriously spiraling 28-bend trail. The trail is ascending with swirling twists and is littered with slippery stones. Patience and mindfulness can be critical in assuring your safety. After reaching the peak of this particular section, the challenge of an arduous uphill climb will be rewarded with a sweeping view of the entire canyon lying under your feet.
After crossing a bamboo forest and the rugged hillside, you’ll descend to the Tea Horse Hostel to spend the night.
lunch in hostel
In the morning, after crossing a shaky iron chain bridge and the narrow path carved out of the mountain, you’ll reach Halfway Hostel to unwind. The path to Tina’s Hostel is also filled with narrow path along the cliffs, you’ll be only a few steps away from the edge of the cliff. The proximity to danger will raise your respect for nature and help you value life more. You can quench your thirst by drinking the sparkling water from a waterfall along the route, but be careful not to be blown away when you reach a stone terrace where wind would suddenly grow strong.
After that, get ready for a continue descending route that would finally lead you to Tina’s Hostel to have lunch. The middle rapid of the gorge is where Jinsha River carves its way through the canyon. The view of the galloping rapid crashing rocks is both tarrying and exhilarating. You can linger there for a while to marvel at the magnificent scenery. Continue trekking to Walnut Grove Garden to end the journey traversing the middle gorge.
After that, you’ll be transferred to visit the upper part of the gorge to take in the panoramic view of the entire canyon. You’ll be chauffeured back to Lijiang at around 5pm.
|Picked up from your hotel in Lijiang
|Transferred to Qiaotou Town
|Trek to Halfway Hostel in Bendiwan Village
|Trek to Tina's Hostel in the middle part of Tiger Leaping Gorge
|Start the Tiger Leaping Gorge trekking tour from Qiatou Elementary School
|Have lunch at Tina's Hostel
|Have lunch at the Naxi Family Hostel
|Trek down to the Middle Rapids of Tiger Leaping Gorge;
|Trek to 28-Bend Trail
|Trek to Walnut Grove Garden (Hetaoyuan)
|Trek to Tea Horse Hostel
|Transferred to visit the upper part of Tiger Leaping Gorge
|Chauffeured back to Lijiang
|Arrive at Tea Horse Hostel
|Pick up your own dinner options