Run and staffed by nomads, Norden Camp is an extraordinary option in the slender province of Gansu on the Tibetan Plateau. It offers visitors the opportunity to experience and immerse in Tibetan culture as well as enjoying the most inspiring landscape.
A truly unique camping experience in the Tibetan Plateau
There are both tents and log cabins that are very comfortable with beds covered in yak wool blankets and soft rugs
Enjoy a range of authentic and immersive activities; have lunch with a monk, go hiking or horse riding and even visit a local textiles workshop run by the owner of Norden Camp
Sleep surrounded by miles of wildflowers and enjoy some of the best stargazing in the country
Open from May to October each year, Norden Camp is one of China's most astonishing accommodation options that's designed for those wanting to immerse in Tibetan culture and get away from it all. Owned by American Tibetan Dechen Yeshi, and her husband Yidam Kyap, the camp combines style with authenticity and at the same time is incredibly environmentally friendly.
The area combines brilliantly with Beijing, Xian and Chengdu to form a truly unique itinerary that blends old with new and city with wilderness. Designed for those who don't mind living without luxuries for a few days, Norden's yak wool tents and log cabins offer a simple level of comfort in true Tibetan style. Bathrooms are shared or showers are offered by buckets, and you'll sleep under yak wool blankets, eating local cuisine at night. It's definitely not for everyone, but is perfect for intrepid and adventurous travellers that want a glimpse into Tibetan life.
Surrounded by miles of wilderness enshrouded with wildflowers and home to hares, marmots, foxes, gazelles and birds, Norden feels, and is, truly remote. While you are there enjoy hiking, horse-riding, making your own yak, having lunch at a monk's house or with a local family or otherwise relaxing in the small spa. After a magical Tibetan dinner share stories around the camp fire and gaze at the stars before a cosy sleep inside your tent or cabin.
We feel this is a simple but stylish camping option that's incomparable in China. It's perfect for adventurous families or couples wanting to add something adventurous and unique into their itinerary in China.
When to visit
Located in the Tibetan Autonomous Kenlho Prefecture in China's Gansu province, Norden Camp is approximately 30 minutes from Labrang or four hours from Lanzhou, the capital of Gansu.
We generally recommend flying into Lanzhou, the capital of Gansu, as flights here are more reliable than nearby Labrang. From Lanzhou it's a 4-hour scenic drive to Norden Camp, which all adds to the experience. There are flights to and from Xian and Chengdu, making this a great stop in a more classic itinerary.
Linxia: China's Little Mecca
Between Xiahe and Lanzhou, we will make a stop at the Xiguan Mosque and walk at a local market at this autonomous prefecture.
Meet a Nomad Family & Horseback Riding
Enjoy a traditional local lunch with a nomad family on a camp, hop on a back of a horse as you tread the grassland and gain insights into the nomadic lives with an evening Tibetan Culture Q&A Session.