10 Amazing Places You Should Visit in China’s Yunnan Province

The natural Taichi pattern at Nuodeng. (Image: Klife.com)
The natural Taichi pattern at Nuodeng. (Image: Klife.com)

Yunnan is a mystical province situated on the southwest plateau of China, and is home to 25 different ethnic groups.

Apart from Shangri-La, Lijiang, and Dali, there are many other splendid landscapes to visit here that have not yet been commercially exploited.

Make your list of must-see places, and prepare to feast your eyes!

1. Bamei Village

Bamei Village. (Image: Baidu.com)

Lush farmlands. (Image: Baidu.com)

Bamei Village. (Image: Baidu.com)

Even the water is green. (Image: Baidu.com)

Bamei Village. (Image: Baidu.com)

Traditional life. (Image: Baidu.com)

Bamei is a quiet village away from the hustle and bustle. It is surrounded by green hills, and the only entrance to the village is via a narrow cave with river that flows through it. Villagers have to take a boat to go through the cave.

After come out of the dim light of the cave, you will feel as if you have entered another world, far from the stress of modern life.


2. Puzhehei

Puzhehei. (Image: Klife.com)

Soft sunset hues. (Image: Klife.com)

Puzhehei. (Image: Klife.com)

A sea of lotus flowers. (Image: Klife.com)

Puzhehei. (Image: 163.com)

Mystical karst mountains. (Image: 163.com)

Puzhehei has a unique karst geology with 312 small hills, 83 caves, and 54 lakes that are linked together.

In the summer, tourists can enjoy a magnificent view of thousands of acres of lotus flowers in the lakes.


3. Red Lands of Dongchuan

Red land. (Image: Secrectchina.com)

Rich colors. (Image: Secrectchina.com)

Red land. (Image: Secretchina.com)

Fertile soil. (Image: Secretchina.com)

The soil of Dongchuan is rich in minerals, particularly copper, giving the land its striking red color.

In May and June, the bright red dirt, and golden crop fields form the most gorgeous landscape, against stunning blue skies.


4. Baoshan Stone Town

Stone Town. (Image: Secrectchina.com)

Traditional houses huddles on the steep slopes. (Image: Secretchina.com)

Stone Town. (Image: Secrectchina.com)

Local stone is used for building. (Image: Secrectchina.com)

Stone town. (Image: Sina.com)

Buildings perched on a hill top. (Image: Sina.com)

The Stone Town is located in a valley where the Jinsha River runs through. Here an ancient ethnic group known as the Nakhi people built their homes on top of mushroom-shaped rocky hills.

The houses are scattered across the hills, following the shape of the slope. The town itself is a giant carved artwork with natural beauty.


5. Shaxi Town

The twilight of Shaxi Town. (Image: Sina.com)

Twilight in Shaxi Town. (Image: Sina.com)

Shaxi town. (Image: Secretchina.com)

A stone arch bridge. (Image: Secretchina.com)

Shaxi town. (Image: Secretchina.com)

Visitors enjoy the atmosphere. (Image: Sina.com)

Shaxi Town has over 2,400 years of history. It is the only historic market town left on the ancient Tea Horse Road.

It has retained most of its original architectural features. Temples, opera stages, shops, red stone streets, and centuries-old trees… Everything has managed to keep its original look just as if time hasn’t flown by.


6. Yuanyang Rice Terraces

Colorful fields in the dusk. (Image: Baidu.com)

Colorful fields at dusk. (Image: Baidu.com)

Terrace fields under the rays of sun. (Image: Weibo.com)

Terrace padis reflect the sun’s rays. (Image: Weibo.com)

A quiet village among the green terrace fields. (Image: Baidu.com)

A peaceful village in the green fields. (Image: Baidu.com)

Along the Red River in Yuanyang County are the renowned rice terraces dug by the Hani people, starting around 1,300 years ago.

This tiered landscape covers over 16,000 hectares, and is a World Heritage Site located in the Ailao mountains at around 5,900 feet above sea level.

The Yuanyang rice fields are regarded as the core region of the Hani terraces because the area is so mountainous, with around 3,000 steps carved into slopes ranging from 15 degrees to 75 degrees.


7. Canola Flower Fields of Luoping

Villager riding on a water buffalo in the canola field.  (Image: Qingfeng qingying)

Riding a water buffalo. (Image: Qingfeng qingying)

Canola fields forms different patterns on the land. (Image: Weibo.com)

Canola fields form different patterns in the land. (Image: Weibo.com)

Canola fields in the soft light of dawn. (Image: taobaocdn.com)

Yellow flowers in the soft light of dawn. (Image: taobaocdn.com)

While most part of the country is still covered by the snow, the canola flowers has already been in full blossom in the county of Luoping in the eastern Yunnan. The golden color stretches across thousands of acres of farmland.

Luoping is called the largest natural garden of flowers. Tourists feel lost in the endless sea of golden flowers. The ideal time to see the visual spectacle is in March, when the Canola Festival is celebrated in Luoping.


8. Fuxian Lake

Fuxian lake. (Image: Baidu.com)

Misty Fuxian lake in the early morning. (Image: Baidu.com)

A small island in the lake. (Image: Baidu.com)

A small island. (Image: Baidu.com)

The lake in the twilight. (Image: Baidu.com)

The lake at twilight. (Image: Baidu.com)

Fuxian Lake is one of the most mysterious lakes in China. In 2000, a large-scale historic city was discovered underwater there, but its origins remain unclear. Also, the lake is an aviation restricted area like Bermuda. Two planes have crashed into the lake after losing control as they flew over it.

The island in the lake is said to be the palace of fishes. In the summer, tourists can sometimes see thousands of fish around the island moving in the same direction like soldiers marching in a parade.


9. Tengchong

Hot springs. (Image: Baidu.com)

Hot springs. (Image: Baidu.com)

Volcano landscape. (Image: Baidu.com)

Volcanic landscape. (Image: Baidu.com)

Volcanoes. (Image: Baidu.com)

Volcanoes. (Image: Baidu.com)

Tengchong County is located where the Indian and Eurasian techtonic plates meet, and where intense volcanic activity occurred in the past. The collision of two continental plates has made Tengchong a volcanic geothermal area.

The Volcano National Geological Park of Tengchong has 97 volcanic edifices. Tengchong Hot Sea is densely covered with the hot springs, and tourists can take their pick of different springs to relax in.


10. Nuodeng Ancient Village

The naturally formed Taichi pattern. (Image: Klife.com)

A natural Taichi pattern. (Image: Klife.com)


Ancient village. (Image: Baidu.com)


Stone alley. (Image: 163.com)

Nuodeng Village is located in a valley in Dali. The natural landscape of Nuodeng forms an splendid view similar to the Taoist “Tai Chi.”

Time seems to have frozen here as many of the buildings are from the Ming or Qing dynasties. The villagers still keep their simple way of life, and show great hospitality to visitors.

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