Kayaking is a versatile watersport and a great way to spend quality time with friends and family while exploring nature from a new point of view. Tibetan Connections has lunched Kayaking trips in several locations in Qinghai and Gansu provinces of western China. If you’re looking for a fun and exciting way to enjoy your holiday, this may be the perfect trip you choose to go with. To get started, we’ve pulled together the tips and tricks we believe the beginning kayakers should know.

Kayaking in Mechu River
Kayaking in Mechu River

Kayaking in Mechu River
Kayaking in Mechu River

Dokog Valley
Dokog Valley

Dokog Valley
Dokog Valley



Once you try kayaking on the Tibetan plateau, we’re positive you’ll love it. it gives you some unique possibilities to see the landscapes in remote nomadic regions, it also opens a door to visit the nomad and camp next to their camps. 

  • Kayaking is great exercise: If you’re looking for an outdoor exercise routine while you are in Qinghai or Gansu, this trip is a worthy option. 

  • Kayaking is a fun and exciting way to spend time with others, enjoy a picnic and relax on the river side. Set your camp on the rugged grasslands, enjoying the sun set with red wine and Tibetan Yak cheese.  

Can we do kayak, cultural stuff and or hiking in one trip ?  

Tibetan Connections has organized the private small-group tours throughout the Tibetan and Silk Road regions for more then twenty years. Our selected locations for kayaking are in southern Qinghai and north-western of Gansu province.  We can help you to design your trips in these locations and tailor-make to combine the components of kayaking, horse-riding, trekking, cultural sites of monasteries and museums, artisan workshops, home-stay at the villages etc. according to your interests and timeframe. Possibly we can also send our team with gears and equipments to any other regions in Sichuan province or other parts of Qinghai and Gansu provinces.  For trips that have both kayaking and camping, we will provide you with full camping facilities, including cooking, dining as well as emergency first-aid kits. 

Sangkog Grassland
Sangkog Grassland

Sangkog Grassland
Sangkog Grassland


How safe is it for the beginners 

We have studied the kayak before promoting this activity. For the safety reasons, we have carefully chosen several low rivers in Qinghai and Gansu provinces, where the rivers connect you from one to another province.  For the beginners, our professional guides will teach you before starting the kayak. Lifejackets and helmets are provided for all participants. Before you book this trip, first thing is to make sure you know how to swim. During the trip, the participants are required to always listen to and follow the instructions from your guide. If the weather turns into rainy and windy unexpectedly, we will postpone the activity and rearrange it according to the weather condition.




Trip summary 

This is a week trip combining with a 2-day kayaking and one night camping, taking places in Qinghai and Gansu provinces of western China. This trip will start from Xining, the capital of Qinghai province and end at Lanzhou airport of Gansu province. You will see some distinctive scenic landscapes, reach the remote Buddhist retreat sites, talk to an amazing group of local Tibetans and taste local Tibetan, Hui and Chinese cuisines.  The highlight of the trip, (the plateau landscapes always offer the striking beauty of nature!) is  kayaking in the plateau rivers, which will be so exciting and a long-lasting memory for sure. The second highlight -- what we would like you to take away, is the meeting of the people here.  We will introduce you to the artists, environmentalist and Buddhist monks whose life stories, their current works and daily practices will be as amazing. Talking and sharing views with them, we believe, is a "thought kayaking"!

Trip level


Itinerary and trip cost details

Day 01. 

Arrive in Xining. Meet your team. Orientation dinner at a local restaurant. 

Day 02-03

Cultural tour of monasteries and retreat caves, meet the monks. Taste local cuisines. 

Day 04-05

Kayak training and go kayaking! Camping and picnic.

Day 06-07

Visit the art workshop and talk to the local artists; Visit the environmentalists and listen to their stories.

Fly back home .


$ 1430 per person (group booking minimum 4 people )

$ 1580 per person (individual booking  )

The best season for this trip:
June through Sept.

Gears includes

  1. Tent

  2. Mattress

  3. Lamp

  4. Dining set

  5. Table

  6. Chair

  7. Kayak

  8. Paddle

  9. Lifejacket

  10. Helmet

Price includes

  1. Accommodations

  2. Meals

  3. Tour guide

  4. Vehicles and drivers

Price does not include

  1. Travel insurance

  2. Entry fees for site visits

  3. Air and train tickets