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Experiencing Yunnan Province, China: An Insane Off the Beaten First Time Travel to China’s South of the Clouds

Thursday, September 06, 2018 , 0 Comments

bowdywanders.com Singapore Travel Blog Philippines Photo :: China :: Experiencing Yunnan, China: An Insane Off the Beaten First Time Travel to China’s South of the Clouds
Experiencing Yunnan Province in China
Just like a Beijingese, I was staring at one of the small sandy bricks on the Great Wall of China. I was floored to have finally seen the greatest and longest wall of all. With a brash yet nervous face, I shouted at the top of my lungs. I made a prophecy to my tribe of Filipino-Chinese backpackers: I shall return, I said. I didn’t know how, I didn’t know when… I almost slipped after shouting, probably because it was too cold that day, or maybe it was my nerves throwing me off. Haha! But I knew, from my senses – my core being, that I MUST GO BACK TO CHINA because: CHINA TRAVEL is one of the best in Asia.

bowdywanders.com Singapore Travel Blog Philippines Photo :: China :: Experiencing Yunnan, China: An Insane Off the Beaten First Time Travel to China’s South of the Clouds

This was me eight years ago, with less than five countries visited and minimal travel itineraries completed. I was still living in the Philippines, and my everyday encounter with Filipino-Chinese people was the closest experience I had to understand more about China. Beijing, ShanghaiHong KongMacau, and Taipei were my proudest “Chinese” go-to experiences, and I must admit, I was idealistic (read: naïve like a pre-school Asian kid) back then.

bowdywanders.com Singapore Travel Blog Philippines Photo :: China :: Experiencing Yunnan, China: An Insane Off the Beaten First Time Travel to China’s South of the Clouds

Flash forward to this day in Singapore, thanks to Zomya.Co, collaborating with Chinese travel gurus, doing a travel blog about China, and traveling yet again to this least unknown country in the world, I would never have believed myself for being back in China… this time to experience an intense life-affirming province known as Yunnan. If it’s your first time visiting China, you probably never have heard of Yunnan, China, nor of Zomya.Co. But, no worries. You have to get a feel of some experiential adventures in Yunnan and care of Zomya.Co, should you consider a different kind of first (or second. or more.) in China.

bowdywanders.com Singapore Travel Blog Philippines Photo :: China :: Experiencing Yunnan, China: An Insane Off the Beaten First Time Travel to China’s South of the Clouds
bowdywanders.com Singapore Travel Blog Philippines Photo :: China :: Experiencing Yunnan, China: An Insane Off the Beaten First Time Travel to China’s South of the Clouds
bowdywanders.com Singapore Travel Blog Philippines Photo :: China :: Experiencing Yunnan, China: An Insane Off the Beaten First Time Travel to China’s South of the Clouds

Bordered by MyanmarLaos, and Vietnam, as well as the nearby regions of GuangxiGuizhouSichuan, and my forever bucket list favorite, Tibet, you kind of get the picture why Yunnan is a special place to travel to. With Kunming as the heart of the Yunnan province, each village, town, and region gives an unbelievable real-life highlight.

Fun fact: Did you know that Yunnan is larger than Germany? Yes. Did you know that there are ethnic minorities living in Yunnan that don’t look like your stereotypical imagination of Chinese? Yes yes. Did you know that they have a really impressive International Airport that could rival the best ones in Asia? Yes yes yes. How to get to Yunnan? I will take you there.

bowdywanders.com Singapore Travel Blog Philippines Photo :: China :: Experiencing Yunnan, China: An Insane Off the Beaten First Time Travel to China’s South of the Clouds
bowdywanders.com Singapore Travel Blog Philippines Photo :: China :: Experiencing Yunnan, China: An Insane Off the Beaten First Time Travel to China’s South of the Clouds
bowdywanders.com Singapore Travel Blog Philippines Photo :: China :: Experiencing Yunnan, China: An Insane Off the Beaten First Time Travel to China’s South of the Clouds
bowdywanders.com Singapore Travel Blog Philippines Photo :: China :: Experiencing Yunnan, China: An Insane Off the Beaten First Time Travel to China’s South of the Clouds

From historical kingdoms, dynasties, and perfected Yunnan cuisines (read: Yunnan stinky tofu, hello I miss you every stinking single day!), you’ll be glad to know that you can get the most diverse and distinctive of Chinese cultures in Yunnan alone. Though compared to other CN cities, Yunnan is still a bit underrated and off the beaten, you should not shy away from wanting to go to this minority culture-abundant province. After going through experience after experience, with what seemed like a parallel dream, I started to recognize why my Chinese brother told me that you haven’t experienced the real China if you have only experienced Beijing and Shanghai”.

It still holds true by the way, even after 8 years of not seeing China. CHINA TRAVEL is one of the best in Asia. And the good thing to know, DIY Yunnan or Kunming itineraries are doable, even if you are a newbie at traveling. Tourist trails and backpacking ideas should be entertained, even if you have zero knowledge of the Chinese language. Places like Dali, Lijiang, and Jianshui are intriguing and good for backpacking. Yunnan safety is, well, very safe! There are definite places, experiences, discussions, not to mention food fares in Yunnan that can drive you crazy… in a good way, yes! This kind of experiential travel is more possible with Zomya.Co.

bowdywanders.com Singapore Travel Blog Philippines Photo :: China :: Experiencing Yunnan, China: An Insane Off the Beaten First Time Travel to China’s South of the Clouds
bowdywanders.com Singapore Travel Blog Philippines Photo :: China :: Experiencing Yunnan, China: An Insane Off the Beaten First Time Travel to China’s South of the Clouds
bowdywanders.com Singapore Travel Blog Philippines Photo :: China :: Experiencing Yunnan, China: An Insane Off the Beaten First Time Travel to China’s South of the Clouds

The team from Zomya made me feel like a Yunnanese, blending in with the locals the second I ordered coffee at the airport. It’s a different kind of travel affair, which suites travelers who would rather experience the genuine-less-touristy-more-travel-sensible kind of trip. It’s the kind of tour you SHOULD experience when you visit China. They rallied with me in tailor fitting every inch of experience – from timely conversations and timeless experiences – CHINA TRAVEL is one of the best in Asia and Zomya.Co strengthens that belief even more.

With that said, before I overshare everything in one post, like a Yunnanese History professor, let me just say that I am so stoked to let you in on the details about Yunnan, China in the coming posts. Get ready, hope you are looking forward to this part of China that you probably have never seen before. You shall return, I say.  Will you join me as I help you pre-explore Yunnan before you go there soon? :-)

ZOMYA.CO: Experiential Adventures in China
Providing one of a kind travel experiences, through the off the beaten path adventures in China’s Yunnan and Eastern Tibet. Building bridges between local people and authentic cultures, like traditional villages, ethnic markets, and local cuisines. Tailor-made itineraries to give you a different perspective on traveling in China.
Website: http://www.zomya.co/

bowdywanders.com Singapore Travel Blog Philippines Photo :: China :: Experiencing Yunnan, China: An Insane Off the Beaten First Time Travel to China’s South of the Clouds
bowdywanders.com Singapore Travel Blog Philippines Photo :: China :: Experiencing Yunnan, China: An Insane Off the Beaten First Time Travel to China’s South of the Clouds
bowdywanders.com Singapore Travel Blog Philippines Photo :: China :: Experiencing Yunnan, China: An Insane Off the Beaten First Time Travel to China’s South of the Clouds
bowdywanders.com Singapore Travel Blog Philippines Photo :: China :: Experiencing Yunnan, China: An Insane Off the Beaten First Time Travel to China’s South of the Clouds
bowdywanders.com Singapore Travel Blog Philippines Photo :: China :: Experiencing Yunnan, China: An Insane Off the Beaten First Time Travel to China’s South of the Clouds
bowdywanders.com Singapore Travel Blog Philippines Photo :: China :: Experiencing Yunnan, China: An Insane Off the Beaten First Time Travel to China’s South of the Clouds
bowdywanders.com Singapore Travel Blog Philippines Photo :: China :: Experiencing Yunnan, China: An Insane Off the Beaten First Time Travel to China’s South of the Clouds
bowdywanders.com Singapore Travel Blog Philippines Photo :: China :: Experiencing Yunnan, China: An Insane Off the Beaten First Time Travel to China’s South of the Clouds
bowdywanders.com Singapore Travel Blog Philippines Photo :: China :: Experiencing Yunnan, China: An Insane Off the Beaten First Time Travel to China’s South of the Clouds
bowdywanders.com Singapore Travel Blog Philippines Photo :: China :: Experiencing Yunnan, China: An Insane Off the Beaten First Time Travel to China’s South of the Clouds
bowdywanders.com Singapore Travel Blog Philippines Photo :: China :: Experiencing Yunnan, China: An Insane Off the Beaten First Time Travel to China’s South of the Clouds
bowdywanders.com Singapore Travel Blog Philippines Photo :: China :: Experiencing Yunnan, China: An Insane Off the Beaten First Time Travel to China’s South of the Clouds
bowdywanders.com Singapore Travel Blog Philippines Photo :: China :: Experiencing Yunnan, China: An Insane Off the Beaten First Time Travel to China’s South of the Clouds
bowdywanders.com Singapore Travel Blog Philippines Photo :: China :: Experiencing Yunnan, China: An Insane Off the Beaten First Time Travel to China’s South of the Clouds
bowdywanders.com Singapore Travel Blog Philippines Photo :: China :: Experiencing Yunnan, China: An Insane Off the Beaten First Time Travel to China’s South of the Clouds
bowdywanders.com Singapore Travel Blog Philippines Photo :: China :: Experiencing Yunnan, China: An Insane Off the Beaten First Time Travel to China’s South of the Clouds
bowdywanders.com Singapore Travel Blog Philippines Photo :: China :: Experiencing Yunnan, China: An Insane Off the Beaten First Time Travel to China’s South of the Clouds
bowdywanders.com Singapore Travel Blog Philippines Photo :: China :: Experiencing Yunnan, China: An Insane Off the Beaten First Time Travel to China’s South of the Clouds
bowdywanders.com Singapore Travel Blog Philippines Photo :: China :: Experiencing Yunnan, China: An Insane Off the Beaten First Time Travel to China’s South of the Clouds



Bowdy is an amateur adventurer, a coffee sleepyhead, and a start-up rooter, with a penchant for classic-looking photos. At last count, he has visited some 55 countries, and is now living in Singapore. He's always in search of fascinating routines to exploit, within the edges of after-office hours and (un)limited holidays.

For collaboration ideas, email bowdywanders@gmail.com.

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