Guizhou is one of the best places in China to experience the authentic ethnic culture. In this 6-day tour of Zhaoxing and Kaili, you will get a chance to step into a wonderful mosaic of Miao and Dong people. Get lost in the archaic wooden stilt houses, primitive lifestyle and colorful folklore culture by visiting an array of minority villages.
Upon your arrival in Congjiang Railway Station, your guide will meet you and then chauffeur you to Zhaoxing Dong Village, the largest settlement of Dong ethnic minority groups in China. Walking into the village, you would be greatly delighted with their unique folk residences and traditional lifestyles. All the houses are stilted wooden buildings, which are just like hanging attics with strong ethnic architectural flavor. The drum tower, as a symbolic structure of Dong people, is an important public place for socializing and gathering. Wind and Rain Bridge (Fengyu Bridge) is another highlight of Dong Village, where you would witness a spectacular corridor covered with pavilions and towers above the bridge. Tonight, you would get lodged in a fancy guesthouse in the village.
Note: As the highspeed train network is now well developed, you could get to Zhaoxing which is 40 minutes' drive from Congjiang by highspeed train from Guangzhou, Chengdu, Chongqing, Guiyang or Guilin.
Today, a land transfer of 40 minutes would take you to visit another Dong Village of Tangan. The village is a pastorale perched on the hillside, where you could overlook the verdant valleys and paddy fields. Delve into the village by walking on the old stone stairs to discover the iconic drum tower and folk residences. Afterwards, take about 2.5 hours hike back to Zhaoxing. It is a classical trekking route, during which you would walk on the decline through the crisscrossing footpaths in the field. Amidst layers of rice terraces, you would get lost in the amazing nature by embracing the charming countryside landscapes. On the way, you would probably encounter some local sacrificial rituals or livestock slaughtering in rural villages, or local farmers working in their fields with buffalos.
Back to Zhaoxing, you could explore the Dong Village further to experience their traditional way of life.
Then your afternoon would be livened up by a live folk song concert (Kam Grand Choirs) performed by a choir of natives dressing up in their dazzling ethnic costumes.
At last, enjoy a wonderful night at Zhaoxing.
After breakfast, a one-hour drive would take you to the mysterious Huanggang Dong Village, which could be the best place for you to sample the oldest and most authentic Dong culture in China. The village is nearly untouched by outsiders, retaining well-preserved folk residences, customs and lifestyle as it has been like about hundreds of years ago. Just like all other Dong Villages, Huanggang gets symbolic drum towers, wind-rain bridges and stilt houses, but what would surprise you more is their pristine and undisturbed beauty.
Then sit back for a ride to Xiaohuang Dong Village nestled between verdant mountains. Stilt houses are clustered on a hill slope, imbued with primitive styles and features.
Afterwards, take a 3.5-hour drive to head for Zhenyuan, a lesser-known haunting ancient town of Guizhou. Dating back to 2,200 years ago, Zhenyuan Old Town used to be a settlement where military army units were previously stationed. The entire town was traveled across by the S-shaped Wuyang River, with quaint inns, restaurants and shops lined on both sides. Check in a boutique hotel to enjoy an overnight stay in the town.
Enjoy a morning excursion to Zhusheng Bridge, the landmark structure of Zhenyuan Old Town. Stretching across the stunning river, it is a seven-arch bridge with a three-story pavilion built in Ming Dynasty, linking the enchanting views on both sides.
Then make your way to Qinglong Cave to feel awe for the architecture complex built on the dangerous cliffs above water that could be dated back to 500 years ago, and discover the multiple styles of Confucianism, Buddhism and Taoism.
After that, embark on a cruise journey on Wuyang River to go deeper into the gorges to explore the oddly-shaped peaks, thrilling cliffs and cascading waterfalls.
Then make a private vehicle transfer to Kaili in about two hours and make visit the Matang Gejia Village en route. Gejia is a barely-known ethnic minority group blessed with unspoiled idyllic lifestyle. Gejia women are talented in batik and embroidery artworks, and their attires are the most eye-catching spectacles. Both women and men wear bright-colored headgears, and dressed in their home-made ethnic costumes likes masculine soldiers in ancient China.
Upon arrival in Kaili, check in at your comfortable hotel for a good rest.
Enrich your ethnic minority tour experience by an in-depth discovery of Miao people. Firstly, you will leave for Langde Miao Village, which is also widely known as Long Skirts Miao for women there wear long skirts traditional costumes. You will be warmly welcomed by the guest-greeting ceremonies. Local people will dress up and line up at the entry of the village to offer you twelve courses of "block-the-way" rice wine and perform their folk songs for you.
Later, you would head for Paika, another old Miao settlement famous for Lusheng making. Lusheng is a unique reed-pipe musical instrument of Miao and Dong People, and in Paika you are able to see how Lusheng is made at an old craftsman's home and appreciate the delightful melody of it.
Afterwards, embark on a 30-40 minutes' trekking to Shuidian Miao Village. Walk along the country road among the paddy fields and inhale the natural beauty of the peaceful village.
Lingering for a while to soak up the traditional folk culture of Shuidian, you will set out to visit the Datang Miao Village, where women wear mini-skirts all year round. Besides, local women keep to have a topknot of Tang Dynasty style that looks classical and trendy. Another highlight is their special stilted granaries built high above the water to protect their grains from rats and fire.
At last, get back to downtown Kaili and check in a comfortable hotel.
This morning, you will take a ride to Qingman Miao Village to sample their primitive way of life. More importantly, you are given a chance to see the local women making Miao dresses from cloth weaving, dyeing and clipping to sewing.
Next, to dig deep in Miao people's traditional art, you will pay a visit to Shiqiao Miao Village, where locals run their life by producing hand-made papers out of tree barks in traditional ways. Then you would be escorted to Guiyang Airport to catch your departure flight. Wish you a nice trip home.
Note: You are suggested to book your departure flight after 17:00 pm.
Indigo Lodge Zhaoxing
Grand Metropark Heaven-sent Resort
Indigo Lodge Zhaoxing
Grand Metropark Heaven-sent Resort