Tea Tours ??


One of the intentionally aged teas, Pu-Erh has a loyal following.

Postby vibrantdragon » Jan 7th, '09, 23:46

Several years ago I spent almost two weeks in Kunming and really liked this hotel, Camellia, and this part of the city. Plus, they have a travel office that was very helpful with my trip to stone forest and other parts. I am sure they can help you set it up. This place has the cheap Hostel type rooms and the nice full service private rooms. I liked the breakfast, staff and rooms here.

http://www.kmcamelliahotel.com/English/Travel.asp

If you want to go to Jinghong let me know, my wife know the hotels and food places very well there.
Last edited by vibrantdragon on Jan 8th, '09, 00:16, edited 1 time in total.
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Postby wyardley » Jan 8th, '09, 00:12

You should try contacting Brian Kirbis if you're going to Yunnan. You could also try contacting Scott of Yunnan Sourcing. They may be able to take you around a little, or at least give you some ideas for people to talk to.

If you're going to Wuyishan at all, PM or email me; I can give you some contacts that might be helpful.

My personal preference is to avoid group tours, but there are occasionally tours put on by various tea shops. I haven't personally noticed any that are planned for the near future, though.
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Postby vibrantdragon » Jan 8th, '09, 02:11

The hotel was nice and a decent price. Plus, that part of town is good for american tourist, some coffee shops with western food for those times you really want some american style food. Plus, bars and places that can speak english.
You might be able to use Expedia to book the room or just go direct. We used a card my wife had from a sister company to Expedia in China and they gave us a good discount. Remember ask for discounts never take the first price offered. Plus, even if they do not advertise a tour ask them to set one up for you. They might just do it. When we went to stone forest, they just arranged a van and we went without tour guide, so much cheaper.
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Postby Drax » Jan 8th, '09, 07:42

I've never been on a tea tour. But I do know Seven Cups is organizing three tea tours in 2009. It's been awhile since I looked, but I know they go to China to get their tea, but I think this is the first year that they're trying the tour thing. $4400 total, I think? They're all going to be in this range, I would imagine. . . but if you can believe the hype (i.e. ability to go to hard-to-access areas), sounds very neat.

http://www.sevencups.com/community/tea-tours/
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Postby heavydoom » Jan 8th, '09, 09:59

it's much cheaper to book your tours in china itself. you save a lot of money doing it this way.
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Postby vibrantdragon » Jan 8th, '09, 13:42

I agree to use the local China tour places for the best price. I know in Jinghong and Kunming every coffee shop has tours and offers english guides and all types of help. I know they are not always the lowest rates, but I saw them all offered at very good rates compared to the US based tours. The lowest rates are the chinese travel shops in china. Those are hard to use unless you have a chinese speaker with you.
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Postby heavydoom » Jan 8th, '09, 17:00

regardless what tours you are going to be on, they are tourist traps. you will be herded into places where they sell touristy items. so beware. best imo is to know someone who will show you places as a native of the area.

i did a shanghai tour and i was shown your stereotypical places you could think of, all it mattered was for you to shop for useless trinklets and other items of below par workmanship.
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Postby Goose » Jan 8th, '09, 20:49

Thanks for sharing your photos Tom, Very nice.

Image
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Postby vibrantdragon » Jan 8th, '09, 23:35

Many times in China, I have done the same thing. I hired a dirver and sometimes with a guide. It worked out very well. They went were wanted not to the tourist traps. Quite nice normally. Some times just join tour to get ride and than went my own direction. All of these things are possible at the hotels and at the coffee shops.
Of course one time in Shanghai i took the standard city tour and then they wanted to go to the gift shop for us to shop.
In Shanghai when I took the tour out to Hangzhou and the dragon well tea area, that was good just a small bus with 5 of us. We could stay at the areas we wanted longer or shorter and not stops at the stores. We just had to tip larger at the end.
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