This is the place where most of Lijiang´s postcards are taken. It offers a breathtaking view over the pond, pavilions, bridges and the Jade Dragon Snow Mountain in the background.
The park itself is beautiful and peaceful and a very good opportunity to spend a lazy day.
Entrance fee is 20 yuan, for students 10 yuan.
A very good place to sit down and relax. The water of the pond is extremely clear, all in all a peaceful place. This peace can nevertheless be disturbed quite easily, as many Chinese come here to stand on the bridge and scream and clap their hands and then watch the water carefully! We came to the conclusion that they were waiting for larger bubbles coming from the spring, but are not sure about that. Anyway, we found it quite amusing!
If you want to go to the mountain you have to enter the National Park (entrance fee is 40 Yuan, for students 20 Yuan). We were taken to the cable car station leading to Spruce Meadow at an altitude of about 3400 m. The queue at the cable car station was very long, so we decided to walk. For the unfit like us it was quite a challenge as the path is steep and we already felt the altitude. But if you are not in a hurry, walk up, it is nice! It will take about 1 hour if you really take your time. You can still take the cable car back, the views are spectacular. Don´t worry about the ticket, just queue and explain to the person checking the tickets that you went up on foot, you can pay the one-way fee of 20 yuan down at the base.
The old town of Lijiang is set at an elevation of 2400 m, characteristic are the many narrow waterways and canals. In 1996 it was destroyed by an earthquake but has been rebuilt quite originally and has become a UNESCO World Heritage Site. The old town is especially beautiful because of the cobblestoned streets, canals, trees and old chinese houses with small shops and cozy guesthouses.
This is the meadow where you get after taking the cable car to Yun Shan Ping (or walking). From the station it is a short walk through the forest, there are many people at the meadow but it is fantastic! Great panoramic view!
Price for the cable car: 40 Yuan for both ways
Lijiang deservedly receives a lot of tourists and caters for them very well. The old town is a sight to behold: ancient 2-storey white houses sit comfortably along glacier-fed canals, which are crossed by way of tiny stone bridges, giving the impression of a small-scale, oriental Venice. However the real people of Lijiang do not live in these pretty white houses, they live in the streets around.
Take a walk away from the main tourist drag, you won't be disappointed. Narrow streets, turning into steep staircases as you climb the hill, give you the smallest glimpse of real life in Lijiang. This photo was taken early in the morning. I had watched an old man come out of the house on the right with his two bird cages. The moment he hung the cages up, and removed their covers, the birdsong was wonderful.
Having meandered my way from the early morning buzz of Lijiang, I found myself in a clearing right at the very top ot the town. The view was breathtaking.
I had just wound my way up Shizi Shan, the verdant hill that separates old and new towns, known as Lion Hill. Inthe clearing at the top is a pagoda that is only some 9 years old. While it lacks the charm that comes with age, it has nevertheless been constructed with care, and provides a fantastic panorama right across the plains, taking in snow-capped Jade dragon Snow Mountain as well as the rooftops of the old town.
This is the view from the top of the mountain. Be sure to pack sweaters and jackets for the trip to the top. If you are sensitive to thin air then you might want to buy a canister of pure O2. The lift to the top provides amazing views of the surrounding countryside. The bus ride and tickets came to about 80 rmb/ person.
Lijiang is seperated into old and new towns. Staying in Old Town is a must to really experience the criss-crossing canals, bridges and maze-like narrow streets. The main focus of Old Town in the Old Market Square, where the Naxi women, in their traditional dresses, congregate.
Enjoyment Rating = 3.5 out of 5
Located 35 km from Lijiang. Best way to get there is by taxi. Cost RMB 80. From there grab the highest chairlift in Asia to a height of 4,506m for RMB 160 (return). Be prepared to pay an exhorbitant entrance fee of RMB 40 + 40 to the Snow Mt area itself.
The trip is well worth it though.
Wow Factor = 4 out of 5
Rent a bicycle to Suhe Town along a lane. There are farmland and flower, and if you are lucky, you'll find the way to Suhe Town without ticket.
Reading and sleeping under the sunshine makes me feel happy.
The Naxi cuisine has one of the most shocking appetisers in town. It features crunchy six-legged creatures. The delectable insect menu includes bee larvae, dragonfly nymphs, meal worms and fat juicy beetles. Before you try however, make sure it's deep fried or well-cooked. All the frying will sterilise the little critter and prevent from having a stomach ache.
Tip:Since you're having a go at this, you might as well shock your parent ( some of us just can't grow up).
1)put one insect near your mouth.
2)Ask your partner to take a snapshot.
3)MMS it to your chosen parent for instant results. Call your parent approx 10 minutes after sending that picture, your parent would have come to about then.
Note: I've mentioned this before in my Hanoi blog and I will do it again in China since the tip is very popular.
In the northwest of the Old Town of Lijiang, there is a hill. It is the best place for a bird's eye view of Lijiang city.
The hill, Lion Hill, is not high, but climbing it made me a little bit tired. I guess, the reason is the altitude of Lijiang (2700 meters). Looking down from the Lijiang Lion Mountain park, I was satisfied with the view in my sight. Thousands of roofs gathered. I could distinguish the main street of the Old Town, based on the direction of the roofs.
Wangu Tower is located on the top of the hill. This five- story structure is the highest wooden structure in China, which is easy to see from every corner of the Old Town. Through the window of the Wangu Tower, the Jade Dragon Snow Mountain is shining.
The price of the ticket is 15 RMB.
Lijiang Mural is quite different from other frescos, these vivid true-life frescos is rural and unconstrained. Each painting includes at least one hundred portraits, very well perspective drawing with clear images. The various lifelike portraits are not only Buddhas, many of the scenes are drawn from daily life, people are shown fishing, riding horses, weaving, dancing and casting iron.
10 miles from Lijiang, the Yulong Mountains are the southern-most section of the Himalaya Mountain range, located at the Qinghai-Tibet and Yunnan-Guizhou plateaus interlock. Shanzidou, the main peak of the mountain at 18,000 feet above sea level, looks like a gigantic dragon clad in white snow and glacier all year round. Still heavily forested, the mountain bursts into bloom every spring with camellias, rhododendrons, and azaleas. Herders take their cattle, goats, sheep, and yaks to graze on its slopes. In autumn, some of the pine trees turn amber yellow, while the deciduous trees transmute their green leaves into patches of bright yellow, orange, and scarlet.