Covering an area of 15561 square km. with a population of 3.7 million, Kunming, the capital city of Yunnan Province, is a tourist city renowned for its perennially pleasant weather, intriguing highland scenes and sights, the famous Shargri-La natural beauty, and venerated history. Thus it has been entitled as "one of the historical and cultural cities of China". Since it stands at an altitude of 1895 meters with an average annual temperature of 15.1 Celsius, no wonder it has got a sobriquet "Spring City".


Dali nestling in the arms of the Diancang Mountain 400 kilometers west of Kunming, is linked to the outside world by airlines and express ways. 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 mountains are encircled by rivers, and the city is encircled by mountains, as one line goes. The mountains area perpetually 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 .


The ancient city of Lijiang is found in Dayan Town, a largely Naxi settlement first built during the Southern Song Dynasty some eight centuries ago . In December 1986 , the State Council designated the place as a famous ancient UNESCO put Lijiang on a list of the world major cultural heritages. Culture is the soul of Lijiang ancient town. Dongba culture is an integral part of Naxi culture, referred to as the ancient culture of the ethnic Naxi. It is called so because it is mostly found in the Dongba religion, which is believed to be one thousand years old. It chiefly consists of scriptures, paintings, music, dances, ritual implements and religious services. Situated in the northwest plateau in Yunnan, Lijiang(the Beautiful River) got its name from its position at the middle reaches of the beautiful Jinsha River. The Naxi Autonomous County is the seat of the administrative commission of Lijiang Prefecture. Scattered on an area of 7,648 square kilometers, the population of 320,000 is made up of the Naxi, Bai, Lisu, Pumi, Yi, Tibetan, Miao, Hui, Han and other ethnic groups. Among them, the Naxi people constitute 57% of the total. Affected by the plateau wind from South Asia, Lijiang has two distinctive seasons, the dry and the wet. The temperature range of the four seasons is narrow. The annual mean temperature ranges from12.6 C to 9.9 C. The Dongba religion, a primitive religion, is the common belief of the Naxi people.In addition, some of them believe in Lamaism. These two religions have greatly influenced the ideology of the Naxi people and their social activities and life.


Zhongdian is the name of both a huge county and the town that is its capital. It forms one of three counties that make up the Diqen Tibetan Autonomous Prefecture in northwestern most Yunnan ; Tibetns call their home Gyelthang , not ZHongdian, an introduced Chinese name. The prefecture touches Tibet in the northwest , Ganzi and Muli in Sichuan to the north , Lijiang to the south and Nu Jiang (Salween River ) Lisu Autonomous prefecture to the west. It has a population of more than 300,000 and is at the heart of the Hengduan Mountain Range thatembraces the gorge system of great rivers which rush down from Tibet. The region has a huge range in elevation , from a 6740-metre mountain on the border with Tibet to 1480 metres in river valley to the south . Plant hunters and naturalist during the first half of this century prized the area . Now Many of the forests have been stripped , but still large traces of virgin forest remain . Domesticated animals of the region include yak, Dzo , sheep , goats , pigs and chickens , wild animals are the Dian golden haired monkey , wild donkey , black-necked crane , lesser panda , leopard , muskdeer , pangolin , and many small mammals and birds . Hunting is universally loved here and guns are common; most of these rare treasures will not survive.

Xishuan Banna

Is the southernmost prefecture of Yunnan Province with the city of Jinghong and thecounties of Menghai and Mangla under its jurisdiction . Of Xishangbanna 19184.45 square kilometers of territory, tourist and scenic resorts make up 1202.13 square kilometers , and nature reserves occupy a total of 2,064.6 square kilometers . The prefecture is nicknamed ?Aerial Garden ?for its luxuriant and multi-layered primitive woods and tropical rain forest , which are teeming with animals and plants . Xishuangbanna is famed for its wild herds of elephants , looking auspicious in an awesome fashion , and its swarms of peacocks , whose graceful psotures can put professional dancers to shame . The prefecture is truly a cradle height of 88 meters, and a single tree can grow into a forest It takes twenty or so hours to drive from Kunming to Xishuannbanna , which are 700 kilometers apart . banna Airport is large enough to accommodate Boeing 737s , and a flight between Kunming and Xishuangbanna takes about 50minutes .Apart from daily flights to and from Kunming , the airport also operates chartered flights between the prefecture and Chengdu , Chongqing , Bangkok and some other cities.

 China Center for Financial Research, TsinghuaUniversity
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