Yunnan - China's most beautiful province


古镇: Death-knell for Yunnan's Historic Towns

In China even the 'old towns' are new. Under the 古镇, or ancient town, moniker old towns are razed and their population driven out to make space for sanitized versions of Chinese history that drive the tourist dollar.


Jim Goodman: The Terrace Builders

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Abstract: The rice terraces of the Ailao Mountains in southern Yunnan province, China, are some of the oldest terraced farms in Asia. First mentioned in Tang Dynasty records, these farms, 80% of which are irrigated, with water running through them all year round, have been in continuous use for over a thousand years. In 2013 UNESCO declared the heartland of this area a World Heritage Site. The Terrace Builders is a detailed account of how these farms are made and used, the cities and mountains of Honghe Prefecture and the far north of Vietnam, as well as the various ethnic minorities who live there. The book pays special attention to the Hani people, the largest ethnic group in the area, and includes summaries of the culture and clothing of their neighbors the Yi, Miao, Yao, Zhuang and Dai. The book includes 300 photos of the land and its people.

Yunnan Tours

We can put you in contact with personally vetted, experienced tour guides, speaking Chinese, English, Dutch and German, for southwestern China. They can help you plan a trip matching your personal interests and requirements and accompany you on your trip. We just provide the introduction, we do not charge any commission or fees.
For enquiries email tours@yunnanexplorer.com.


Followers of Jianchuan Azhali Buddhism perform a candle dance in Shaxi.


A clan temple on the slopes of a burial hill near Xizhou.



The old border crossing to Guizhou.


Jim Goodman: Children of the Jade Dragon

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In the first half of the 1990s Lijiang had barely made its appearance on the Chinese tourism stage, even less so the then remote mountains of Ningland and Lugu Lake. Jim Goodman's account of the Naxi and the Yi draws back to a time where not everything was staged for mass tourism: an account of a lost world.


Traditional Bai vernacular architecture with buildings to three sides and a screenwall.



Best surviving station on the French-built Vietnam-Kunming railway.

Markets this Thursday

Kunming 昆明
Kedu 柯渡镇

Dali 大理
Shuanglang 双廊镇
Huangping 黄平镇
Yangcen 羊岑
Biaocun 表村
Niujie 牛街
Maidi 脉地
Zhongjiang 中江
Yinqiao 银桥
Daying 大营
Qiaohou 乔后

Lijiang 丽江
Shunzhou 顺州

Xishuangbanna 西双版纳
Xiding 西定哈尼族乡

Dehong 德宏
Lianghe 梁河县
Kachang 卡场镇

Honghe 红河
Mengla 勐拉
Dianwei 甸尾乡
Heping 和平乡
Wuwan 乌弯
Maandi 马鞍底
Daheigong 大黑公
Xinjie 新街
Longwu 龙武镇
Baixian 白显

Wenshan 文山
Shadou 沙斗
Nijiao 腻脚彝族乡
Tienpeng 田蓬镇
Jijie 鸡街乡
Donggan 董干镇

Chuxiong 楚雄
Jiyi 己衣乡
Shizhong 适中乡
Tanhua 昙花乡
Sanchahe 三岔河乡
Guanglu 光路镇
Dongpo 东坡傣族乡

Baoshan 保山市
Wafang 瓦房彝族白族乡
Mangbang 芒棒

Lincang 临沧
Luodang 洛党
Yongde 永德县
Lushi 鲁史
Danjia 单甲乡
Fuhe 复合
Mengdui 孟堆乡

Zhaotong 昭通
Linfeng 麟风
Shuitian 水田

Yuxi 玉溪
Nanuo 那诺乡
Mosha 漠沙镇
Yuanjiang 元江哈尼族彝族傣族自治县
Yani 亚尼

Nujiang 怒江
Jiakedi 架科底乡
Pihe 匹河怒族乡
Dimaluo

Puer 普洱
Mangxin 芒信镇
Qiannuo 千糯