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Songtsam Linka Retreat Shangri-La

Songtsam Lodge Shangri-La

Songtsam Lodge Benzilan

Songtsam Lodge Tacheng

Songtsam Lodge Cizhong

Songtsam Lodge Meili

Songtsam Lodge Lijiang

Songtsam Linka Retreat Lhasa

Songtsam Lodge Rumei

Songtsam Lodge Laigu

Songtsam Lodge Bome

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Songtsam Linka Retreat Shangri-La

Songtsam Lodge Shangri-La

Songtsam Lodge Benzilan

Songtsam Lodge Tacheng

Songtsam Lodge Cizhong

Songtsam Lodge Meili

Songtsam Lodge Lijiang

Songtsam Linka Retreat Lhasa

Songtsam Lodge Rumei

Songtsam Lodge Laigu

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Songtsam Linka Retreat Shangri-La

Songtsam Lodge Shangri-La

Songtsam Lodge Benzilan

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Songtsam Lodge Cizhong

Songtsam Lodge Meili

Songtsam Lodge Lijiang

Songtsam Linka Retreat Lhasa

Songtsam Lodge Rumei

Songtsam Lodge Laigu

Songtsam Lodge Bome

“Exploring Three Parallel Rivers” 8N/9D

“Welcome New Year of 2021” 8N/9D

The Yunnan to Tibet Tea Horse Road Expedition 11N/12D

Tibetan Family Dinner

Tianbao Abujee Snow Mountain Hike

Yunnan Golden Monkey National Park

Tiger Leaping Gorge Visit

Tiger Leaping Gorge Hike

Tibetan Family Dinner

Tianbao Abujee Snow Mountain Hike

Yunnan Golden Monkey National Park

Tiger Leaping Gorge Visit

Tiger Leaping Gorge Hike

Outdoor Rock Climbing

Tofu Making Experience

Yunnan Golden Monkey National Park

Nanjiluo Hike

Cizhong Catholic Church Visit

Hiking/Cycling Around Feilai Temple

Mingyong Glacier Hike

Baima Snow Mountain Hike

Tibetan Prayer Flag Printing

Wenfeng Temple & Wenbi Mountain Hike

Puji Temple

Outdoor Rock Climbing

Plant Magic

Tiger Leaping Gorge Visit

Tiger Leaping Gorge Hike

“Lhasa” in Lhasa: Jokhang Temple and Barkhor Street

Mani Stone Painting

Duosong Tso Lake

Jampa Buddha Puja Celebration

Gedong Festival

Gedong Festival

Shoton Festival “Yogurt Festival”

The Tibetan New Year (Losar)

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Meili Snow Mountains Tour: A Mystical Journey to Kawagebo Mountain

The Meili Snow Mountains tour provided by Songtsam Lodges will take you on an eye opening and spiritual journey in the Yunnan Province.

Mar 11 2022

The area where the Meili Snow Mountains meet the Three Parallel Rivers of Yunnan creates breathtaking scenery that encompasses the majestic land. The free-flowing Mekong and the wild Salween join the Jinsha to make it into the mighty river that hems the stunning landscape that features towering snow-capped peaks and glaciated gorges.The area is steeped in culture and religious meaning and the peaceful people that inhabit the region have not only worked hard to preserve this area for generations, but have also nurtured their own majestic “Shangri-La.” Songtsam Lodges have built a beautiful series of lodges in five carefully selected Tibetan locales, enabling guests to experience and immerse themselves in the different cultures and landscapes present in these regions. By combining stays at other Songtsam properties, the Meili Snow Mountains tour will take you on a spiritual journey through the region.

Three Parallel Rivers of Yunnan Three Parallel Rivers of Yunnan

Songtsam Meili Customized Tour

Songtsam Lodges offers a custom travel itinerary of five nights and six days on the Meili Snow Mountain route. Songtsam Lodges will create a unique and unforgettable tour and cater your experience according to your specific interests and requests. The tour begins in the secret Niding Primeval Forest in Benzilan, where you can see the night sky twinkling above without the interruptions of civilization and be at complete peace of the nearby river valley at night. The next stop is the Meili Snow Mountain. Learn about the ancient myths and unveil the secrecy and mystery of the sacred Kawagebo Peak. Lastly, the conclusion of the tour takes place in Shangri-la. In the city named after the famed legend, experience the still-celebrated ancient cultures that have been handed down through generations and for thousands of years while being surrounded by the beauty of snow-capped mountains and rolling grasslands.

This tour is for those more adventurous travelers looking for an unforgettable and spiritual experience. On the tour, you will experience physical and cultural activities, wildlife discovery, and take part in exploring the hidden and lesser-known, untouched, and off-the-beaten-path areas. From the stunning views of Kawagebo, the highest snow peak of the Yunnan Meili Snow Mountains, to the floral and lush Mekong valley, this customizable tour will take you through the heart of the Three Parallel Rivers area and reveal its living heritage.

Benzilan: A River Valley Full of Lush Greenery

Benzilan is a quaint town that lies alongside the Jinsha River. The town is the perfect place to visit for those who are wanting a change from typical Chinese architecture to experience a less commercialized and more traditionally charming location.

The Best Place to Stay in Benzilan: Songtsam Benzilan Lodge

Songtsam Benzilan lies in a region between the Songtsam Shangri-La Lodge and the Meili Snow Mountains. The Benzilan Lodge is nestled amongst barley and wheat fields in a traditional and friendly Tibetan village. Songtsam Benzilan features a magnificent exterior decorated with carved stones and an interior embellished with rich Tibetan adornments. The lodge provides guests with a cozy and private atmosphere with its ten exclusive rooms, small and intimate restaurant, and stunningly beautiful surroundings.

Songtsam Benzilan Lodge Songtsam Benzilan Lodge

Niding Primeval Forest

Hike through and picnic in  Niding Primeval Forest. Follow the ancient Tea Horse Road as it winds through the  most beautiful section in the forest. At this stunning piece of the road, you will find yourself amongst ancient trees that seem to  reach  the sky and enjoy a peaceful picnic along a babbling stream.

Niding primal forest Niding primal forest

Dong Zhu Lin Monastery

Dong Zhu Lin Monastery is one of the 13 ancient Lama Monasteries that were built in China during 1667. It is the oldest Tibetan Buddhist Gelugpa (the newest of the four major schools of Tibetan Buddhism) monastery in the western region of the Yunnan province and acts as a spiritual sanctuary for the local Tibetan people. The temple is rich in artifacts; it holds the only three three-dimensional “Vajra Wheel of Time” (the series of Buddhist texts that founded the lineage of Tibetan Buddhism) altars in the Kang-Tibet region. They are the temple’s most precious items, symbolizing the core wisdom of the Shambhala Kingdom. Every year at the Gedong Festival the monastery will hold a grand celebration.

Surrounded by beautiful mountains and a peaceful landscape, this is the ideal location for sightseeing and trekking. August is filled with jubilation and celebrations, and there will be extravagance  in line with the Chinese Lunar Calendar holiday.

Local Traditional Delicacies

The food of the Benzilan Deqin County reflects its wintry landscape. It focuses on barley, dairy products, and meat. Yak is fried, made into hotpots or jerky, and dipped in hot sauce, a particular favorite among visitors. Their diet is usually heavy on meat and noodle dishes, hearty stews and braises, dumplings, cheese, and butter, which is often used to make tea. Here are some recommended things to try on your visit.

Buttered Tea: For most people, Tibetan butter tea, known as po cha, is an acquired taste. Since the tea is salty rather than sweet, it has a completely unexpected flavor. As a result, many non-Tibetans don’t like it at first, but come to love it as they associate it with warmth and good times spent with Tibetan friends.

Highland Barley Wine: Highland barley wine is one of the three symbolic food items of Tibetan culture. It is a unique type of wine that is brewed from the highland barley and unpolluted snow water or spring water. It is the most favorite wine of the Tibetan people and is a must-have in big festivals, celebrations, as well as in day-to-day life.

Yak Meat: Yak is a sweet and subtly flavored red meat. It is juicier than buffalo and elk, and never gamey. It has a more delicate flavor than beef and is never greasy, bland, or mushy. The different flavor and feel of the texture come from its lean, tender meat and natural oils.

Buttered Tea Buttered Tea

Meili: Feel the Sacredness of the Snow-Capped Mountains

The mountain range in the Chinese province of Yunnan lies close to the northwestern boundary of the province and is followed by the Salween River on the west and the Mekong on the east. The Meili Snow Mountains are a subrange of the larger Nu Mountains, a constituent range of the Hengduan group.

The Best Place to Stay in Meili: Songtsam Meili Lodge

Songtsam Meili Lodge is located in a small Tibetan village called Gujiunong. The village is opposite Mount Kawagebo, the most prominent peak of the Meili Snow Mountain range. The lodge overlooks the majestic Meili Mountain range, its presence solid and impenetrable. Most of the Songtsam Meili Lodge rooms feature a stunning view of the Meili mountain range, an unforgettable experience for every guest who stays there.

View of Meili Snow Mountain from Songtsam Meili Lodge View of Meili Snow Mountain from Songtsam Meili Lodge

Gujiunong Village

You will visit Gujiunong Village, a wonderful town where you will get an inside feel for the typical daily life and routine of Tibetan locals. Experience Tibetan homes and the lives of their inhabitants, learn to knead tsampa, taste the family’s homemade ghee or butter tea, and then try using the generations-old method of using hand-carved scripture boards used to hand-print the secrets of Goddess of Mercy on the colorful flagstaff.

Gujiunong Village Gujiunong Village

Meili Snow Mountain

The Meili Snow Mountains are awe-inspiring. The range’s crest rises to over 20,000 ft above sea level, making the mountains an extremely prominent presence over the river valleys to the east and west. The highest peak is Kawagebo, rising to 22,110 ft and is considered highly sacred for Tibetan Buddhists.

Mount Kawagebo

Mount Kawagebo holds meaningful religious significance for the people of Tibet. If you are lucky enough to visit on a clear day, you will have a chance to enjoy the divine view of the sun shining on the golden peaks at sunrise.

The peak is so sacred that every year Tibetans and travelers from all over the world make their journey to worship Kawagebo. Every morning the light hits the peak spectacularly, turning it into an illuminating gold that emanates a deity-like splendor. Songtsam’s tranquil lodge is in view of this magnificent peak and deliberately located away from the main tourist area and can guide you to the most beautiful and untamed paths around the Meili mountain range. The guided hikes take you off the beaten track and allow you to feel a connection with nature. At the same time, however, offering a private experience of this spiritual land with no crowds.

Mount Kawagebo Mount Kawagebo

The Legend of Mount Kawagebo

Kawagebo Peak is one of the most sacred mountains for Tibetan Buddhism. It is known as the spiritual home of a warrior god of the same name and is visited by 20,000 people each year from around Tibet. Many of these visitors like to walk the perimeter of the peak, an arduous 150-mile trek. However, although the peak is spiritually significant throughout Tibetan Buddhism, it is the local Tibetans that are the everyday guardians and stewards of Kawagebo, both the mountain and the deity.

The ancestral religion of the Kawagebo area, as in much of Tibet, was Bön. It was a shamanistic tradition based on the idea of a world pervaded by good and evil spirits. Bön encompassed numerous spirits and deities which are still recognized today, and are usually connected with specific geographical localities and natural features. The major mountain peaks in the Hengduan Mountains, for example, are all named after specific deities. Kawagebo is one of these. Since the introduction of Tibetan Buddhism, however, Bön has mostly vanished, and Tibetan Buddhism has become the dominant religion of the Kawagebo area.

Tibetans believe that the warrior god, Kawagebo, will leave them and take away their protection if humans set foot on the peak of Kawagebo. They believe a human touching the peak will result in making the ground unholy and that disasters will follow as they lose the god’s protection. Tibetans have also shaped a centuries-old sacred geography around the peak, maintained by the religious leaders of local monasteries in negotiation with local villages. The sacred and natural site preserves the natural resources and ecological health of the range.

Try a Traditional Yak Hotpot

The most popular and enjoyed food in Tibet is the unique yak hotpot. The nutritious diet of the yak, the unique environment of the snowy plateau in which they live, and the Buddhist way of preparing the yak meat makes it more tender and juicy than regular beef. Yak meat is also very nutritious, and both locals and tourists enjoy the delicate taste of the meat.

Shangri-la: a Spiritual City Bathed in Rich Culture

From the breathtaking mountains, plateaus, and valleys, to the unique lifestyles of its inhabitants, Shangri-La injects peace and spiritual feeling into its visitors. On this part of the tour, you will receive even more insight into the lives of Tibetans and the rich culture of the region.

The Best Places to Stay in Shangri-la: Songtsam Shangri-la Linka and Songtsam Shangri-La Lvgu

Hidden in the city’s tranquility and rolling green valleys between traditional Tibetan villages and Himalayan barley fields are the Songtsam Shangri-la Linka and Songtsam Shangri-La Lvgu

lodges. Songtsam Shangri-la Linka replicates the Tibetan stone buildings in the Kham style and is surrounded by blooming flowers and trees.

Songtsam Lvgu Lodge Shangri-La is situated in close proximity to the Ganden Sumtseling Monastery, the largest Tibetan monastery in the Yunnan province. The lodge sits within a traditional Tibetan community. The locality is a self-sufficient Tibetan farming village and holds a special meaning for the origin of the Songtsam Lodges.

Songtsam Shangri-la Linka Songtsam Shangri-la Linka

Jinsha River

The Jinsha River flows through the Yunnan province in western China as well as the provinces of Qinghai and Sichuan, and at one point, through the famous Tiger Leaping Gorge. Kawagebo Peak combines with the other two nearby rivers, the Mekong and the Salween. The river then flows mightily through deep gorges and untamed scenery and at this diverse junction is where the Songtsam tour focuses.

Nixi Pottery Village

The history of pottery making in Shangri-La dates back 2,000 years. It is the most coveted practice that is linked to the prestigious cultural heritage of the region. Today, pottery makers in Nixi still follow the methods used in ancient times to make earthenware items such as food pots, water pots, and tea boilers, which are all essential to Tibetan households. You will visit an authentic pottery workshop where you will have the opportunity to learn to make a black pottery item to take away as a souvenir.

Nixi pottery Nixi pottery

Join the Enchanting Tour

Songtsam’s tour of the Meili Snow Mountains will lead you on a mystical journey to the spiritual Kawagebo Peak. On the Meili tour, you will discover the breathtaking scenery of the region as well as the lifestyle, beliefs, and culture of the Tibetan locals. With Songtsam Lodges, you will uncover a new way of living and experiencing the world. Enquire now to begin your journey into a new corner of the world.