Lijiang is a small city in Yunnan Province, China.
Walk around, watch people, shop, drink and eat. There is bonfire at around 7PM at the Si Fang Jie, the central plaza. Many local folks dance there, apparently entertain themselves. Tourists are welcomed to join.
The palace where the Mu Clan of the Naxi people ruled for over 400 years. It is a large complex that extends part way up the hill behind it. At the top is a Daoist temple, with a few Daoists ready to give fortunes to visitors for a donation. A taste of Mulaoye Wine a kind of local alcohol, is available for ?5 (in a shot glass), and there is also a free tea tasting area. Allow at least 2 hours to walk explore this expansive complex and do wander off into the side courtyards as it will take you back to the main courtyards. If you are visiting Wangulou, exit the Lion Hill Park from the south exit which leads you right into the back entrance of Mu Palace.
Jade Dragon Snow Mountain
(25km from Lijiang. Mules can be rented from the nearby Baisha Village or you can take a cable car to the top. Prices vary for the mules depending on what elevation you want to go to. If you pay for the lowest elevation you might be able to bargain with the handlers when you reach the end and continue to the higher elevations for a lower price. Passengers over 100 kg might have to pay a surcharge. A mountain massif (also identified as a small mountain range) visible from Lijiang and capped all year round. Its highest peak is Shanzidou at 5,596m. The view of the massif from the gardens at the Black Dragon Pool in Lijiang is noted as one of China's finest views. The far side of the mountain forms one side of Tiger Leaping Gorge . You might be asked to purchase tickets for electrical car, which they call it as "Little Green frog". It's not worth it. You would miss the 20 minute walk on a wood trail which was very enjoyable. Also, renting a coat is not necessary during the late spring and summer season. You would find it a big burden later. On you way to Yu Long Snow Mountain, you may stop by at the Dong Ba Valley culture center. Though sounds copied from US, Lijiang did good job to present this traditional village to all visitors. They moved some families from other places to this village and let them live their normal lives. I have seen the husband in a family counting changes while the wife was comforting the baby. In another house, two youth siblings were baking their cookies and selling to visitors. This is way more alive. (I have visited the Indian center in Cherokee, North Carolina back in 1998. Villagers there behaved like they were working for boring jobs). There are live singing and instrument performing at different corners. You would see some singers are actually pretty and sin well.
Black Dragon Pool
(About 1 km from Square Street). 8AM-9PM. Quite large place with some nice natural scenery together with traditional building styles. Don't forget to take pictures on the center bridge where the Yu Long Xue Shan (The Jade Dragon Snow Mountain) can be a perfect background. Popular with locals, whom you can find dancing or playing games such as mahjongg or Chinese chess. You can also hike up Elephant Hill if you're feeling energetic. Walk north along the canals from the waterwheels just to the north of the old town. It is about 10 minutes walk up-river, and if you cross over to the left side (western pathway) you will pass the "Through the Window Cafe"a cool place run by an affable New Zealander that serves great coffee and western food. Ask him nicely and he may even show you where is the free entrance,
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