Hiking to Yubeng Village in Yunnan Province

Tour and Travel Guide Yubeng

Hiking to Yubeng from Xidang, Yunnan Province

The Tibetan village of Yubeng lies hidden in a side valley of the Mekong River in the north of Yunnan Province at the foot of the 6740m Mt. Meili (Kawa Karpo), the highest mountain in Yunnan Province. For a long time Yubeng village could only be reached by a 5-hour hike. Recently a simple road has been built and Yubeng is now also accessible by car.

Hiking from Xidang Village to Yubeng Village in Yunnan Province3
Hiking from Xidang to Yubeng Village, Yunnan Province, China

An ideal starting point for the hike to Yubeng is the village of Xidang (2640m), which is situated on a sunny terrace high above the Mekong River. Xidang can best be reached from Feilai Si by rental car or during a one-day hike. In Xidang there are some simple guesthouses and eateries available.

From Xidang the hike leads uphill for about 3 hours to the Nanzhang Pass (3720m). From here it is another 2 hours largely downhill to Upper-Yubeng at about 3200 meters above sea level.

In Upper-Yubeng there are numerous guesthouses for the overnight stay. Yubeng is very suitable as a base for hikes to the Yubeng Waterfall, to Ice Lake or to the base camp of Kawa Karpo. 

For the return journey there is a beautiful hike from Yubeng via Lower-Yubeng down to the Mekong River to Ninong. From the village of Ninong you can return to Feilaisi by local bus or rental car.

Hiking around Yubeng Village, Yunnan

Hiking from Lower Yubeng Village to Yubeng Waterfall in Yunnan, China
Hiking around the magnificent mountain landscape of Yubeng Village, Yunnan

The hike to Yubeng can also begin in Ninong. The village of Ninong is located at about 2000m on a sunny terrace above the Mekong River. From the village of Ninong you first hike parallel to the Mekong River before a steep, winding path leads through a deep gorge to Lower-Yubeng at 3'000 meters above sea level. The hike from Ninong to Lower-Yubeng takes 5-6 hours.

In Lower-Yubeng there are numerous simple guesthouses where you can spend the night. Lower-Yubeng is a good base for the hike to the Yubeng Waterfall (3650m).

The hike from Lower-Yubeng to the Yubeng Waterfall takes about 4 hours with about 600m difference in altitude. The hike back to Lower-Yubeng takes about 2 hours.

From Lower-Yubeng to Upper Yubeng it is another 30 minutes with about 200m altitude difference. In Upper Yubeng there is a bigger and better choice of Guesthouses and eateries compared to Lower-Yubeng.

Trekking from Upper Yubeng to Ice Lake

Hiking from  Upper Yubeng to Ice Lake in Yunnan
Hiking from Yubeng to Ice Lake, Yunnan

A popular and strenuous hike leads from Upper-Yubeng (3200m) to Ice Lake at 3865 meters above sea level. The first part of the 13km hike (return) is flat along a crystal-clear mountain stream before a steep ascent brings you to the Xianong pasture where you will meet peaceful grazing herds of yak in summer.

In 1991 the beautiful mountain landscape of Xianong served as a base camp for the ill-fated Sino-Japanese expedition for the first ascent of Kagebo. At that time, 17 mountaineers died in an avalanche. Meili Mountain remains one of the few peaks on earth that has never been climbed.

From Xianong it is another 1.5 km and 200 meters of altitude difference to the Ice Lake. The hike from Upper-Yubeng to Ice Lake takes about 6.5 hours.

Distance approx. 13km (return) with a total altitude of 1600 meters. A good fitness is required in order to do this hike in one day.


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