Dali, a city of great antiquity, beckons the visitor in any season and is always a tempting destination for those interested in exploring fascinating natural scenery and the area's considerable historical and cultural heritage. It is renowned as a land of wonders, both natural and manmade, inspiring in visitors a great appetite for its beauty.
Attractions in Dali City If a shortlist of Dali's attractions was to be drawn up, the 'silver Cangshan Mountains' and the 'jade Erhai Lake' would top it. They are usually the first choice destinations for visitors.
Composed of nineteen peaks lining up from north to south, the Cangshan Mountains, located to the west of Erhai Lake, have an average altitude of 3,500 meters (11,483 feet) with the tops perpetually covered in snow. Eighteen streams between the nineteen peaks of the mountain flow eastwards to the lake. The ear-shaped Erhai (Ear Sea) Lake is referred to as 'a pearl on the plateau' with an area of about 250 square kilometers (97 square miles). Every year in the Mid-autumn Festival, people living around the lake sail on the clear, green water and admire the golden moon reflected in the lake. This is the most romantic place in Dali. The snow on the mountains and the bright moon above the lake symbolize the vows between lovers.
Running from north to south, the Cangshan Mountains and Erhai Lake form one of the most enchanting sights to be seen in Dali. Proceeding northward from Xiaguan, Erhai Park, established in 1976, is the first stop along the way to Erhai Lake. It is located at the south end of the lake and provides a panoramic view of the area. Thirteen kilometers (8 miles) north of Xiaguan, Dali Ancient City was first constructed in the early Ming Dynasty (1368-1644) at the foot of the Cangshan Mountains. This simple and tranquil city is characterized by the dwelling houses of the Bai Minority. It is a must-see destination in Dali, ranking as one of the most noted historical and cultural cities in China. Nearly all the specialities of Dali are available here. Huoguo Road, or Foreigner Street, is the central thoroughfare where most westerners assemble. Apart from the local foods and handicrafts that are available, plentiful cafes, bars and distinctive restaurants also attract visitors from both home and abroad.
Several historical sites worth visiting are within easy reach of the ancient city, Dali Tai He City, 7 kilometers (4 miles) south of Dali Ancient City, still shows its style as the seat of the central regime of the Nanzhao State although it was deserted after the Ming Dynasty. One kilometer (0.6 miles) north of Dali city, the Three Pagodas at the site of Chongsheng Temple are classic Buddhist pagodas of the Tang Dynasty and are regarded as the symbol of Dali.
Eighteen kilometers (11 miles) north of Dali Ancient City is Xizhou Town. This was a crucial military area in the Nanzhao State and is characterized by several Bai ethnic architectural complexes, such as the Yan's Compound, and the Hou's Compound. Zhoucheng Village is 23 kilometers (14 miles) north of Dali Ancient City. It was once the imperial garden of Dali State. As the largest natural village of Bai in Yunnan, it is famous not only for the Butterfly Spring, but also for its perfect preservation of Bai ethnic customs. Not far from Zhoucheng Village, Butterfly Spring lies at the foot of Yunnong Peak, the northernmost peak of the Cangshan Mountains. It is always a romantic place and the spring is a symbol of love's loyalty.
Attractions around Dali City Around Dali City, there are many other interesting destinations well worth visiting. For example, Jizu Mountainin the northeast of Binchuan County, Weibao Mountain in the southeast of Weishan County and Shibao Mountain in the southwest of Jianchuan County are all scenic areas with notable religious sites. Among them, the one hundred and thirty-nine stone Buddha statues in sixteen grottoes within the Shibao Mountain Scenic Area will intrigue any visitor who is interested in Buddhist artifacts.
Dali Ancient City Overview The ancient city of Dali is one of Yunnan's most popular tourist destinations. It has historic sites, ancient buildings and temples, nearby beautiful Cangshan Mountain and Erhai Lake, Read More>>
Three Pagodas It is a symbol of the history of Dali City, and a record of the development of Buddhism in the area. As its name implies, Three Pagodas are made of three ancient independent pagodas forming a symmetrical triangle. This is unique in China Read More>>
Erhai Lake The sights in Eryuan are beautiful and the scenery of the four seasons is charming. Eryuan is an important part of Dali's tourist resource. The many sights within the county get on very well with each other Read More>>
Butterfly Spring A park at the foot of Yunlong Peak of Cangshan Mountain,This Butterfly Spring and a clear pool have been famous for centuries because every spring tens of thousands of butterflies of many species converge at this spot. The mate here and are attracted to. - Read More>>
The Yan's Compound of Bai Minority in Xizhou The history of this small minority is very interesting. The little town of Xizhou (the name means “happy town”) is a now a quiet town with a population of about 32,000 people. It is 18 kilometers north of the ancien... --- Read More>>
The Cultural City of Nanzhao The Ruin of Taihe City is located on the western slope of South Taihe Village of Zhonghe Town in Dali City. The Ruin of Taihe City has once been the capital of Nanzhao Kingdom during the early period. Read More>>
Dali Bai Autonomous Prefecture Museum It combines ancient Dali architectural styles and Bai architectural styles. The museum is also the central institution where the government of Dali Bai Autonomous Prefecture conducts cultural relic research, excavations, collecting, exhibiting and so on...Read More>>
Dali Municipal Museum Located at the southern section of the Fuxing Lu in Dali City, the Dali Municipal Museum covers an area of 21,510 square meters .Once named Marshal Mansion, it was originally home to Du Wenxiu well known for leading the Hui ethnic minority revolt against the Qing Dynasty in 1856. Read More>>
The Tie-dying in Zhoucheng Zhoucheng Village is Dali's largest village, lying 30 kilometers north near Butterfly Spring. The main attraction in the village is that it has earned the nickname "The Hometown of Tie-dying". The delicate, colorful Read More>>
Jizu Mountain Jizu Mountain that is covered by a dense forest sits a striking tall white pagoda called Lengyan Pagoda. It is beautiful ancient temple with 13 stories, and was first built about a thousand years ago.The peak is about 3,250 meters (10,660 feet) high,and the pagoda a Read More>>
Nanzhao Love Island The Nanzhao Love Island (南诏风情岛), one of the three islands in Erhai Lake, lies in Shuanglang Village of Eryuan County, the most important part of the national scenic spot of Erhai Lake. Nanzhao Love Island boasts advantaged tourist resources. Surrounded by water, the island is bordering with Jizu Mountain which is a famous Buddhist Holy Land to the eastRead More>>
Bai’s Three-Course Tea The Bai people are very hospitable. When a guest or visitor comes to a house, the host will invite him into their main room and serve him with the so-called "three cups of tea." There are two types of "three cups of tea."One is baked tea, which used to serve ordinary guests. ----- Read More>>