The landscape of Yunnan which spraels on the Yunnan-Guizhou Plateau exudes a unique grandeur and uncanny
luminosity. While the Hengduan Mountain Range rises to breath-taking heights in its west
part, the rest of the province is a jumble of rising mountains and plunging vales,with
numerous peaks protruding through their snowy mantles,and a myriad of lakes sparkling like
mirrors in the saturated greenness of a natural tapestry. Animals and plants are
plentiful. The Kunming-Dali-Lijiang-Deqen route is designed to guide the traveller
througha highland studded with mystic natural wonders.
, nestling in the arms of the Diancang Mountain 400 kliometres west of
Kunming, is linked to the outside world by airlines and expressways. The weather there is
mild and it is spring all the year round. Dali is known all over the world for its graceful
scenes and sights. "The green in all four seasons", says another. The Cangshan Mountain
and the Erhai lake are perhaps the most fascinating of all the sceneries in the city.
Ancient City of Dali Nestling in the
arms of the statuesque Cangshan Mountain, and skirted by a wall eight metres in height and
3.5 kilomtres in circumference, the 600-year-600-year-old city of Dail was first biilt in
1683, the 15th year of the Hongwu reign of the ming Dynasty. Featuring stone walls,
grey-tiled roofs, doors and windows carved with dragon and phoenix patterns, and gardens
of varying sizes, the dwellings of Dail evince an air of classic sanctity. The entire is
covered by a maze of streams, fed by runoffs from the Cangshan Mountain. Hence saying, The
gurdling of water can be heard in every house, and flowers are planted in every family.
Three Pagodas of Chongshen Monastery
At the foot of the Zhonghe Peakof the Cangshan Mountain just one kilometre to the
northwest of the city's venerated history. The tallest of the trio, which is 69.13
metres tall, was built in 836 AD, andthe two smaller ones were built during a late period.
No visit to Dail is complete witha call at these three pagodas.
Butterfly Spring Sequestered at the
foot of the Yunlong Peak of the Cangshan Mountain, the Butterfly spring is actually a pool
four metres deep and 20 square metres wide. The gnarling boughs of an ancient silk tree
stretch over its surface. In the fourthlunar month every year, the tree puts out
butterfly-shaped flowers, and swarms of butterflies in twenty or so breeds descend on the
tree ,linking themselves head against tail into numerouscoloured ribbon-like strings which
keep dangling over the pool. For this annual congredationof butterfiles, the silk tree and
the Butterfly Spring have become a major tourist attraction of the Cangshan Mountain.
Cangshan Mountain Also called "Diancang", the Cangshan
Mountain thrusts up in the fashion of a huge screen wall inn the west part of dail.
Malong, the main peak, soars 4,122 metres into the sky under a snow mantle that never
thaws. Down the vales,streams flow with a rich susurrus; up the slopes, the blue sky is
obscured by the dense foliage of clumps of ancient trees; atop the peaks, lakes sparkle
like so many mirrors.With its vast collection of plants and trees, the Cangshan Mountain
is also a veritable botanical garden.
Erhai Lake In the shape of aner, meaning aer in chinese, the east of dail covers
250 square kilometres at an elevation of 1,980 metres with water a storage capacity of
300,00 cubic metres. Its vast pool of water, shining under the sun like a sheet of vivid
green, and the snow mantles of from a breath-taking sight known poetically as Silver
Cangshan and Jade-like Erha.
Erhai ParkAlso known as Tuanshan Mountain, the Erhai Park
covers an area of more than 15,000mu. The Mountain slopes are cocooned in luxuriant pines
and cypresses and grass, and embroidered with clusters of camellias, azaleas, primrose,
and exotic trees and flowers which can be found only in and around Dail. The pavilions,
chambers and corridors atop the Tuanshan Mountion provides an all-encompassing view of the
Cangshan Mountain,shimmering on the horizon like an immense screen, the Erhai Lake, its
vast expanse of liquid silver strewn with white city of Dail and its trio of pagodas,
which are faintly visible in the distance. it is, indeed, an ideal place to marvel at the
famous scene titled Silvery Cangshan Mountain and jade-like erhai Lake.
Yunnan Ethnic Villages
Situated six kilometres south of Kunming, the Yunnan Ethnic Villages is a 2,000-mu affair
bordering on the south by the Dianchi Lake and on the west by the famous Western Mountains
Scenic Area. The famous historical and cultural city of Kunming is in the north of the
villages. Each of the 26 ethnic peoples of Yunnan will have a village built on the
premises, and there will also be a square symbolizing unity among various ethnic groups, a
theatre for the performance of ethnic songs and dances, a folklore museum, and a museum of
ethnic waxworks. When completed, the Yunnan Ethnic Villages will become an epitome of
Yunnan as a multi-ethnic province, and an immense garden in south Chinese horticultural
and landscaping traditions.
20,000-Flower Camellia Tree The Yufeng Temple 13 kilometres
north of the city of Lijiang is home to a world-famous camellia tree which, despite its
short stature of three metres, is more than 500 years old. During its spring-autumn
flowering season, the tree puts forth a total of 20,000 flowers in 20-odd batches. The
largest of the flowers has registered a diameter of seven inches with nine pistils and 18
petals.Hence the nickname,"Global King of Camellia".During its flowering season
it is always mobbed by admirers from all over the world.
Baishui Tableland One of the largest spring-water catchment tablelands of China, the
three-square-kilometre Baishui Tableland lies snugly in the natural contours of a mountain
slope 2,380 metres above sea level in Baidi Village, Sanba Township, 101 kilometres
southeast of the seat of Zhongdian County. The varigated karst landform of the tableland
is an outcome of the continuous piling up of tosc(calcitesediments),resultiong from the
solarized disintegration of calcium bicarbonate contained in the water.
Lushilin Forest Park
The Lushilin Forest Park at Mengcang Town, Xishuangbanna
Prefecture, is a national nature reserve as well as a first-class tourist resort at the
provincial level. lt is a showcase of tropical and monsoon rain forests. The
line,"While the ground is covered with dense forests, underground there lies a vast
stretch of stone forests", gives perfect expression to the uniqueness of the park.
Plants of a thousand and one postures have struck out of clefts and cracks in barren
monoliths, and all sorts of rattans and vines are entangled to form such curious valleys
are everywhere. Waterfalls cascade down the cliffs to feed a maze of ribbon-like brooks
and rivers, where people can cruise down the mountains to the Luosuo River aboard a bamboo
raft provided by local Dai villagers. Variety shows of folk sings and dances are staged on
a daily basis in the park, where not a month passes without a folk festival being
celebrared in pomp and throng.
Dragon King's Palace at Anshun The Dragon King's
Palace is actually atypical karst cave at Longtan Village in Anshun's Matou Township.
Thename,however,is not unearned, for the scenery inside the cave is as gorgeous as a
mythological palace. A 3,000-metre-long corridor has been tunneled into this underground
labyrinth, and a 800-metre-long stretch of it has been opened, conducting the visitor to
such sceneries as the Heavenly Pond, the"palace"on board a boat is like
journeying into a celestial world,with the silhouettes of exotic rocks quivering
invitingly in the water, and the river sways and gleams in an otherworldly fashion.
The"palace", whick is a national tourist resort, consists of a series
of"halls" with a diversity of sights and scenes. So unusual is this natural
phenomenon that the Dragon King's Palace is extolled as a "Wonder of the Asia-Pacific
Zigong Dinosaur Museum Hundreds of fossils
dinosaurs and accompanying species have been found in an area of 2,800 square metres
at Dashanpu 11 kilometres from downtown Zigong. The fossils, entangled in thick piles,
indicate that in time immemorial the place was a natural cave inhabited by a herd of
dinosaurs. On display in the high and spacious hall of the in-situ Zigong Dinosaur Museun
are a number of reconstructed bone frames of dinosaurs, one of which stands as tall as ten
metres, and fossils of palaeovertebrates. Yibin sitting astride the confluence of the
Jinsha, Minjiang and Yangtze rivers, is reputed as"number one city along the
10,000-/i Yangtze". The well-known South Sichuan Bamboo Sea is located on the shared
border of Yibin's two counties, Jiang'an and Changning. The rich tourist resources of
Yibin also include suspended coffins of the ancient Bo tribespeole in Gongxian County,and
the Sea of Rocks and Land of Caves in Xingwen County, where stone forests and underground
limestone caves mingle with the world's largest dolines to form a most fascinating scene.
|Introducing'99 lnternational Horticultural Exposition Kunming, China|