Songtsam Benzilan Lodge view from outdoor patio
Nestled in an intimate green valley in the Shangri-la region at the junction of Yunnan and Sichuan, Songtsam Lodge Benzilan consists of 10 deluxe rooms offering a luxurious experience rich in local culture and natural beauty.
The little town of Benzilan was once one of the most important stops of the Ancient Tea Horse Road. Although the glory of the once charming trading post has gone, fortunately the surrounding countryside remains intact; traditional handicraft methods have survived commercial mass-production, leaving a glance into the history of this famous trading road. Dotted with farms, small temples and some of the most pristine Tibetan villages, the countryside here is an ideal place to experience tranquil village life, and appreciate well-preserved local culture and traditions. A short hike leads to more pristine Tibetan villages and original forests in the mountains with stunning views of the lush, deep Yangtze River gorge – a journey of true discovery.
Of the many traditions in the Tibetan Buddhist calendar, the Gedong Festival usually takes place in winter with specific dates decided by the different religious sects. Held in Yunnan’s monasteries, this colorful festival consists of the Cham dance where performers put on masks and clothes that portray deities and ghosts to celebrate bumper harvests and pray for an auspiciousness new year.
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