Dali is a northwest town in Yunnan province. It is the economic and cultural center of the Dali Bai Autonomous Prefecture. Surrounding by mountains in three directions and a beautiful Erhai Lake in the center Dali owns first rate natural scenery and it have created a unique cultural heritage amidst the area's picturesque surroundings. Nowadays it has become a very important gateway for promoting cultural and trade relations between China and Southeast Asian countries. Also it is a tourist destination replete with every convenience in transportation and public facilities, making it accessible for visitors from home and abroad. Major attractions include Mount Cangshan (cable car), Erhai Lake, ancient architectures and colorful cultural heritage of Bai people.
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Best Season of Dali Tour
The weather pattern of Dali Bai Autonomous Prefecture, aka Dali, is defined by its latitudinal and topographical features. Dali lies on low latitude in the northern hemisphere it tends to have a warm, subtropical monsoon climate, but because it is situated on a high plateau, it tends to be cooler than more low-lying regions. Therefore Dali has a relatively temperate climate year round, with no extremes in summer or in winter. Its rainy season begins in June and last till October. The hottest days are in July and the coldest month is January. The result goes that the best season to visit Dali is spring. All of the nature seems to be in the process of rebirth in this season.
Time Zone: East 7 time zone
Clothes and other Staffs to Pack
The weather is pleasant in spring you can wear long-sleeves and shirts in this season. Summer is always rain, so bring an umbrella or a raincoat in case of the sudden rain. On the other hand, better wear sunglasses and hat to prevent the sun in summer. Temperature drops dramatically in autumn, take warm clothes to keep warm. Prepare down jacket and sweater for winter, it will be cold in Dali.
Accommodation of Dali Tour
As a popular tourist city Dali boasts complete accommodation for travelers. Travelers have two hotel sections for option: Xiaguan District and Old Town. There are more star rating hotels in Xiaguan district and the hotel condition will be better than the Old Town area. While the hotels in Old Town are suit for the travelers who want to experience the ethnic cultures and the budget backpacker. They are cheaper and much close to local life. Youth Hostels are also available in Dali. It is recommended that visitors make reservation in advance in the tourist season.
Traffic:Ways to Get in Dali:
--Daku Airport is located about thirteen kilometers away form Dali. It also called Dali Huangcaoba Airport. At present, flights in Dali Airport connect Dali with many cities such as Beijing, Shanghai, Kunming, Xishuangbanna, Tianjin, Chengdu, Chongqing, Guiyang and Guangzhou. Many flights, such as to Guangzhou and Kunming, are operated daily. It is convenient to get in Dali by plane.
--Several trains run between Dali and Kunming every day. Dali Railway Station is located in Yunling Street and there are five trains travel daily about seven to nine hours. Trains in Dali also go to other tourist cities including Lijiang and Shangri-la.
--There are dozens of public buses running to every corner of Dali. Visitors can take them to some of the scenic spots. Traveling around the scenic spots of Dali by city-buses is very convenient and enjoyable.
--If you want to reach your destination faster you can take a taxi in Dali. They are wise choice for the cheap price. There are Santana brand taxis and other brand ones, different taxi have different price.
--Also you can rent a bicycle to enjoy your trip. Cycling along the paths paved with stone slabs is a very fashionable way to appreciate the Ancient City. Bicycles can be rented quite easily.
Dali Tour Tips
Time: Better avoid the period from May 1 to May 7 and October 1 to October 7 because there is long national vacation in China, it will be so crowd in Dali and also all around the nation, so pick a good time outside that.
Food: Dali food is famed for the dishes cooked by the Bai minority. Other Yunnan food could also be found here since Dali is a melting pot for many different cultures. Famous Dali dishes and drinking are stewed carp casserole, steamed chicken, dairy fans, Er Kuai, Xizhou Town Ba Ba, Three Courses Tea and butter tea.
You can find good local dishes on Foreigner Street of Dali Ancient City. Except some local food outlets there is a wide selection of western offerings, too.
--Good local restaurants are:
A Da Yin Restaurant (South Erhai Road, Xiaguan, Dali City)
Xinghua Village Restaurant (No.165, Yu'er Road, Dali Ancient City)
Siji Hostel (No.55, Boai Road, Dali Ancient City)
Plum Well Canteen (No.138 Renmin Road)
Yihu Chun (No.22 Beimen Street)
Hongyuan Restaurant (No.15 Renmin Road)
Water: Tap water in the hotel could not be drink directly.
·What to buy?
Staffs in Dali are really different from other tourist cities. It features rich ethnic culture and special flavor you can never find in other places. Local products like Dali snow pear, Tu Cha, tie-dyed cloth, Bai brocade, marble products, wood carving, and gold/ silver/copper Ornaments, etc. are all good staffs to buy for souvenir and keepsake. Moreover, Dali is famous for its marble blue-and-white batik printed on cotton and silk. Most shopkeepers along Huguo Lu make clothes tailored to your size for a bargain.
·Where to buy?
Foreigner Street in Dali Ancient City is an ideal place to pick up souvenirs, with many local specialties and handicrafts. This street exhibits an abundance of local specialties. In the dwelling area of the Bai minority group, characteristic handicraft articles of the Bai people can be purchased.
Festivals and Customs
·March Street Festival will be held on 15th to 21st of the lunar March at Cangshan Mountain foot in Dali every year. This festival boasts more than one thousand years history in Bai minority and other minorities flock to Dali. During the festival there will have cultural activities such as horse race, singing race, festival lantern, dragon boat race and commercial fair trading local goods and hinnies.
·Three Temples Festivals is held on 23rd to 25th of the lunar April every year. During the three festival days, the dress-up dancing and singing Bai people parade the three temples --Shengyuan, Jingui and Majiu temples. This festival has more than one thousand years history, too.
·The Torch Festival is held on 24th of lunar June every year. During the festival’s night, the bonfires are everywhere and flaming torches are paraded through homes and fields, providing a great shooting opportunity.
Recreation in Dali
Dali has many natural scenic spots can be visit. Except go sightseeing travelers can also get some fun at night. Nightlife in Dali is always fascinating and colorful. Local ways to enjoy your nightlife is go to some square before the bus station on Jianshe Road, you can see some local resident dancing and singing there. More visitors may choose to spend a serene night in Dali's Ancient City. They could relax into light-hearted chat while drinking beer and the tranquil atmosphere of the ancient city can properly set the tone for timeless relaxation. Foreigner Street gathers many westerners in numerous cafes and pubs.
--Recommend some good places for relax:
Dali Cultural Recreation Center (Central Jianshe Road, Xiaguan, Dali City)
Tangchao Pub (No.87, Foreigner Street, Dali Ancient City)
Taibailou (No.52, Foreigner Street, Dali Ancient City)
Tibetan Café (No.105, Boai Road, Dali Ancient City)
Qianzhu Internet Bar (No.52, Jichang Road, Xiaguan)
Must-see Attractions of Dali Tour
Dali Ancient City: It is located between Erhai Lake and Cangshan Mountain, thirteen kilometers away from Xiaguan. Travelers can find the relaxing atmosphere and laid-back pace of life. Many international backpackers have regarded it as a Mecca to tune out for a while. Handicraft shops and restaurants are lined up along the way. The famous foreign street is also in this Ancient city.
Erhai Lake: This Lake is located in the central par of Dali. It is beautiful highland lake of Yunnan Province and one of the seven largest fresh water lakes in China. As it shapes like an ear, and wave like a sea, the locals named it 'Erhai'.There are three major islands in the lake: Jinsuo, Chiwen and Yuji. Some Buddhist temples and villages are dotted in and around the lake, which are worth a visit. The fishing village of Bai Minority provides you a vivid experience of attractive Bai culture and lifestyle.
Three Pagodas: Three Pagodas boasts more than 1800 years long history in Dali. It is located on the foot of the beautiful Cangshan Mountain and just on the bank of the Erhai Lake. As it name goes, three pagodas consist of three ancient independent pagodas forming a triangle together. When you visit Dali it is a must-see attraction in the city. The three pagodas is treasure in Chinese architecture history, and were listed in China’s most important historical sites. It is regarded as the symbol of Dali city and recorded the Buddhism development in this area.
Mt. Cangshan: This Mountain also called Diancang Mountain. It is made of 19 peaks and make up the highest peaks of the Yunling Mountain Range. Cangshan Mountain enjoys great reputation for its snow, clouds, springs and marble. Besides the natural scenery, visitors can see cultural relics of the Bai people here, if you don't want to climb the mountain you can take the ropeway or rent a horse from the nearby town. It will be a interesting trip in Mt. Cangshan.
Dali Tour Related Topic
Dali Tourism Map