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Lijiang (丽江; Lìjiāng) is a small city in Yunnan Province, China.


The city has a history of at least 800 years and may date as far back as the Song Dynasty. It guards the division of the Jade River into three streams, among which canals and waterways were cut to flow along the old town streets. A book by an American commissioner brought the town some fame in the 19th century and foreign tourists began to return soon after China liberalized its visa policy in the 1980s. Local people began restaurants and cafes and then came to domestic and international attention following a 1996 earthquake. Amid the destruction, China's people were drawn to the lifestyle and excellent environment around Lijiang and began pouring in. Domestic movies and TV shows have made it as popular as Yunnan's reigning vacation destination Dali, although Xishuangbanna is rising as well as the other two become more commercial and expensive.

Get in[edit]

By plane[edit]

Canals in Lijiang's old town

Lijiang Sanyi Airport offers many flights to Kunming throughout the day. Less frequent flights also go to the bigger Chinese cities such as Chengdu, Chongqing, Beijing, Shanghai, Shenzhen, Guangzhou, and Xi'an, sometimes directly and sometimes through a connecting flight. The shuttle to Kunming is only 50 minutes and costs between 400-700RMB with tax. International flights have begun since mid-2011 but at the moment, there are flights only to Kuala Lumpur (Malaysia), Hong Kong and Taiwan; and occasionally Seoul (Korea).

The airport is 35 minutes (22km) from the Lijiang Old Town and around 45 minutes (28km) from Shuhe Old Town, in the suburbs of Lijiang. You can take a taxi (80-100RMB) or the shuttle just outside the arrival hall to the Blue Sky Hotel (20RMB). It leaves when it is full and the other end is 1km from Lijiang old town. A taxi from the shuttle bus terminal to the old town will cost around 10-15RMB. Buses to the airport leave about 100-120 minutes before flights, giving you at least an hour to check in.

By train[edit]

There are several daily services to Dali and Kunming. A ticket booking office is located on the north side of the road several hundred metres west of the bus station. The train station is an impressive structure about 7km south of Lijiang old town. Several public bus lines serve the station, including the number 18, 16 and some number 4 buses (every 30-40 minutes). Fare is 2 yuan. Taxis are reluctant to use the meter and will demand high fares of 30-40 yuan, though with bargaining 15 yuan may be possible. Be aware that taxis are not easy to come by at Lijiang railway station. An alternative is the small SUV-type vans which cruise around offering a share-taxi service.

A hard sleeper berth (with a cabin of 6 berths, with no door) from Kunming to Lijiang costs ¥179 and runs from 10PM to 7AM. The soft sleeper car (with a cabin of 4 berths, with a door) would cost you about ¥205 on the same train. If you travel by a small family, parents and a kid, consider the VIP chamber which is at the price of ¥614, one less than purchasing three individual tickets in a four bed standard room. You may feel a bit tight for luggage storage space, but you gain more valuable privacy, with your own family. From Dali the train is a faster, cheaper alternative to the crowded buses: Hard (padded) seat is about 31Y, and the journey takes only 2 hours from Dali city.

Train Number Dep Arr Hard seat
K9620/K9617 LJG KMG ¥90
K9620/K9617 LJG DLU (Dali) ¥35
K9618/K9616 KMG LJG ¥90

By bus[edit]

  • There are two bus stations, one located south of the old city called the Lijiang Bus Station 丽江客运站, and another between Shuhe Old Town and Lijiang Old Town called the Express Bus Station 高快客运站. Regular services to/from Shangrila and Dali and overnight service from Kunming stop at both stations. There is also a bus to Kunming travelling in daytime, taking about 8 hours. You can take the bus 11 in front of either of the bus stations to the old town or take a taxi.
  • From Dali, minibus/bus at 55/60¥ about every 30/60min, taking 2-3 hours.
  • There is a direct bus from Chengdu which starts at 11:20 at Xinnamen station in Chengdu. It takes about 24 hours to do the trip, and cost about 280¥.
  • Alternatively, you can take a train from Chengdu to Panzhihua (15h, ~191¥ for a hard sleeper) to arrive in the early morning. At the exit of Panzhihua train station, take one of the bus 64 on the left of the exit and get off at the terminus, which is the bus terminal (3¥, ~1h). Then, you can take a bus to Lijiang, which run every 45 minutes from 7AM to 1PM (from 83¥ to 92¥, ~8h).

Get around[edit]

Walking is the only option in the old town, while taxis or shared private cabs (Didi) are often the easiest way around the rest of town, starting 8RMB on the meter. Make sure you have the exact location info or address for the cab driver. Get your hotel to prepare the information for you in Chinese in advance.

Fracture alert: Watch where you are walking. It is easy to trip on the cobblestones or fall into the canals from the walkways or bridges, many of which do not have handrails. The cobblestones can be very slippery when wet.

To see the sights outside the old town, the options are walking, biking, public bus, private blue or green mini-buses (bread vans), or taxi. The public bus mainly stays within the city and stops at 8-9PM. There is a convenient Bus No. 6 that takes you from outside Lijiang Old Town to Shuhe Old Town, and further-on to Baisha Old Town and even Jade Water Village at the foot of Jade Dragon Snow Mountain.

The blue mini-buses are the same price (1-2RMB per ride) as the public bus within the city. They will have the number 38 on the front windshield. The price of a shared mini-bus from Lijiang to Shuhe Old Town is between 3-5RMB per person, but the starting location within different towns and villages varies, and usually you have to wait for the minibus to fill before departing. If you do not know where you want to go and are limited on time, the best option is to rent a taxi or mini-bus for the day, but the price can vary wildly from about 200RMB all the way up to 500RMB per day. The price mainly depends on whether you can speak Chinese, how comfortable you look when you try to bargain the deal and also the distance you will be covering.

See[edit][add listing]

A part of the old town
Blue Moon Valley at the foot of the Jade Dragon Snow Mountain
  • Dayan Old Town (大研古城 丽江古城). Walk around, watch people, shop, drink and eat. There is bonfire at around 7PM at the central plaza next to the Water Wheel. Many local folks dance there, apparently to entertain themselves. Tourists are welcomed to join and the dance steps are not complicated. Can be quite crowded but if you get there early in the morning, you can avoid the crowds. *Update: It is now possible to visit the old town without the 80 yuan "Old Town Preservation Fee" ticket as nobody seems to check anymore and the booths that used to collect the fee are now information kiosks. This ticket is however requested to enter the Black Dragon Pool and is valid during your entire stay in Lijiang.  edit
  • Mu Palace (木府; Mùfǔ). 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. There used to be a lot of high quality paintings in the palace and finely carved wooden doors, but most were destroyed during the Cultural Revolution. 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 (木老爷酒; Mùlǎoyejiǔ), 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. Entry fee is ¥60 (Oct 2011), and the non-posted student price is ¥20.  edit
  • Jade Dragon Snow Mountain (玉龙雪山; Yùlóngxuě Shān), (25km from Lijiang), +86 888 8888. A mountain massif (also identified as a small mountain range) visible from Lijiang and capped all year round. Its highest peak is Shanzidou (扇子陡; Shānzidǒu) 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 (虎跳峡; Hǔtiàoxiá). In addition to a park ticket and cable car tickets, you will need a bus ticket (¥20) to get to the cable car stations, as the park is quite big. Near the spruce meadow, there is the Blue Moon Valley, with beautiful lakes full of blue water and nice stone terraces. You might be asked to purchase tickets for electrical car, which they call "Little Green frog" / "Tourist Car" - 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. Tour guides and vendors sell bottled oxygen on the mountain, but this is very overpriced (60-100RMB). If you need it, buy the bottled oxygen in the city for about 20RMB. On you way to Yu Long Snow Mountain, you may stop by at the Dong Ba Valley culture center. They moved some families from other places to this village and let them live their normal lives. Such domestic scenes as the husband in a family counting change while the wife was comforting the baby or two young siblings baking cookies and selling them to visitors are common. There are live singers and instrumentalists performing at different corners. Some singers are actually pretty and sing well. Entrance to Jade Dragon Snow Mountain Scenic Area ¥162, tickets for the cable car cost ¥180 round-trip (Glacier park)/¥82 round trip (Yak meadow)/¥77 round trip (Spruce meadow).  edit
  • Black Dragon Pool (黑龙潭; Hēilóngtán), (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, but as of Feb 2014 there are guards you need to register with to go up - and they require you to be in a group, fairly strict on lone walkers due to robberies. Walk north along the canals from the waterwheels just to the north of the old town. It is about 10 minutes pleasant walk up-river. ¥80.  edit
  • The Baisha Naxi Embroidery Institute, (12 kms north of Lijiang), 13095230290. It is in the Baisha Village 12kms away from Lijiang City. It is a typical Naxi courtyard with a very nice surroundings. The mission of the institute is to save, protect, inherit and promote the Naxi traditional hand-made embroidery. It occupies 800 square meters, there are many embroidery masters and students, also many hand-made embroideries there. You can try how to do hand-made embroidery there if you have time. Also you can buy some very nice embroideries there if you like.  edit
  • Baisha Mural, (12 kms north of Lijiang). Baisha village was once Lijiang's political, economic and cultural center. The existing55Baisha murals here, Baisha murals due to absorption of Han Chinese painting fine brushwork, succinct, fusion of Tibetan Buddhist painting in the smooth beautiful style, and there is no lack of Naxi nationality character in the wild, it became the mural art treasures.  edit
  • Dragon Bridge. Dragon bridge also known as that in Jiangqiao, located in Southeast Lijiang today seven River countryside village and Yongsheng County Anxiang Jin'an falls village between Jinsha River, from Lijiang county about 80.  edit
  • Dongba Cultural Institute, Dayan town, Lijiang (.5 mile from Baisha Naxi Embroidery Institute). Learn about Dongba, the culture of the Nakhi people, which is a blend of Tibetan Lamaism, Daoism and shamanistic beliefs. Dongba priests (shamans) are the mediators between life and the spirit world and are the only people able to read and write the 1,400 Nakhi pictographs.  edit
  • The Woodlock painting, Lijiang Baisha Old Town (North of Lijiang), 13769003543. The woodlock painting were made by a very famous Naxi Painter ---- XuYunkui who is 58 years old ,the vice chairman of Chinese Ethnic Arts Association and the Princepal Of the Baisha Naxi Embroidery Institute. The Big charectors of his paintings are very local style and ethnic style. You have to visit him and his gallery when you are in Lijiang.  edit

Do[edit][add listing]

Naxi women dancing at Old Market Square
  • Naxi Concert Hall. 8PM-10PM. Enjoy the traditional Naxi music Culture Show performed by the Naxi Orchestra, which includes some 70-90 year old men. The music itself is a combination of traditional Chinese music dating back to the Tang dynasty and local instruments and flavours. The music is well performed, but be prepared for long explanations of its musical history in Mandarin between each piece and the sometimes self-serving comments of the director Xuan Ke. While the Naxi Ancient Music group of Lijiang is famous and well promoted, it is now vastly overpriced. There are other excellent classical Chinese music groups playing in Lijiang's parks or at weddings or house-warmings all over Yunnan. ¥280.  edit
  • Float styrofoam boats. Along the main streams are girls selling candles that float on delicate flower-shaped styrofoam boats. Tourists can purchase one, make a wish, and send their candle down the waterways. Late in the evening after groups have had significant amounts of alcohol you can see many floating candles sailing down the waterways. If you are environmentally conscious and have reservations about sending styrofoam downstream do not worry. There is a net, far down the waterway, that catches the boats. The girls just go down, pick the boats up, and re-sell them the next night. ¥10 (September 2010).  edit
  • Biking. Rent a bike downtown. Ask for a handmade map of smaller surrounding towns that capture the quaint styles of Lijiang without the heavy tourism and the tacky souvenir shops. There are at least three towns, ranging from converted hippy communes to remote farming villages. There is a beautiful remote Buddhist monastery at Puji Mountain which is worth the 30 minute hike. Most of the terrain around Lijiang is level and the roads have only light traffic. These small, non-touristy towns and other sightseeing destinations can be reached within a 30-40 minute ride. Another to some extent much better option if you are intending to head towards the mountain and quaint villages is to rent your bicycles at Shuhe Old Town in the north instead for between 30-50 RMB. You avoid a boring (and upslope) 7km ride to Shuhe on the way to Baisha and Yuhu. Electric scooters are available as an alternative. About ¥30-50 per day including a lock.  edit
  • Walk the canal path. To get to the Black Dragon Pool you can walk the canal path north near the main water wheel. It will take you to the south entrance of the park. The north part of the park is free and you can get there by walking around the south entrance and keep heading north. You should reach a street with the main entrance to the park. Keep going north and you will see a small bridge that leads to a large white building. The white building is the Dongba Museum, everything north of that is free. If the guards bother you at the gate, just walk back to the street and keep walking north and there will be another path to get in to the free part with no gates or guards to bother you. Further north of the park is a local college, and northwest of that is a small reservoir. The reservoir is a good place to take photos of the snow mountain when it is visible. On hot sunny days in the summer there will be lots of locals swimming there in the afternoon although that is officially prohibited.  edit
  • Visit Naxi villages. If you would like to visit some of the Naxi villages in the hills surrounding Lijiang, you can rent a small van to take you around for ¥200-300, depending on the driver and how much Chinese you speak. There are regular minivans on Shangrila Road, the main road on the west side of town, which take locals to and from the villages. Sometimes it can be difficult to find a mini-van to go back to Lijiang after 5PM if you do not make arrangements with the driver who took you there.  edit
  • Impressions Lijiang Show. A cultural show demonstrating the traditions and lifestyles of the Naxi, Yi and Bai peoples of the area. The show takes place inside Jade Dragon Snow Mountain Park at 3500m in an outdoor theater specifically designed to showcase the mountain which is used as a backdrop. The production itself was designed by Zhang Yimou (director of Hero, House of Flying Daggers), Fan Yue and Wang Chaoge, a cast of over 500 people, and a number of horses. However, the show does not have a plot. Tickets cost 190 yuan and can be bought from the ticket booth in the Old Town (make a right at the water wheels and walk down the main street, the booth will be on your left). The ticket price does not include transportation to and from the theater (approx 1 hour drive) or the entrance fee for the park (80 yuan). There is also an Old Town Preservation fee that the park tries to charge as well, however, this can be avoided by claiming to have already paid at you hotel (and showing your hotel key). Bus 7 will take you to the theater for ¥10 and can be caught across from the Mao Zedong statue, but be sure to find out what time the last bus leaves the park.  edit
  • Dry Sea Meadow (Ganhaizi). The closest chair lift up the mountain to Lijiang. It transports visitors to a large meadow located at 3050 meters. ¥160 return.  edit
  • Cloud Fir Meadow (Yunshanping). From the reception centre which is located adjacent to Impression Lijiang on the Lijiang-Daju road a fleet of buses transports visitors to a cable car. Both bus transfer and cable car costs a total of ¥110 for a return trip. From the upper terminus of the cable car a vehicel takes you to the Cloud Fir Meadow for ¥50. The view is not very spectacular which makes this trip highly overprized.  edit
  • Yak Meadow (Máoniúpíng). The furtherest from Lijiang at a distance of 60km, this cable car, costs ¥60 for a round-trip. At an elevation of 3,500 metres and the least-visited of the three chair lifts this area offers grazing yaks, a Tibetan temple and a number of hiking possibilities. On the way to the chairlift’s lower terminus the road drips down and crosses a river. A number of yaks are located here where for a fee you can sit on one. Their owners seem to have no objection to visitors taking photos for no fee of the yaks standing in the river with awesome Jade Dragon Snow Mountain in the background. You can also access Yak Meadow by hopping aboard bus 7 across from the Mao Zedong statue which will take you to the Impression Lijiang Theater for ¥10. At the theater there is a ticket booth to the left of the show entrance which sells tickets to both Spruce Meadow and Yak Meadow (¥80) and provides a tour bus to and from the cable cars and a cable car ticket. Be sure to find out what time the last bus passes the Impression Lijiang theater or you may find yourself calling a taxi which could be expensive. Also see "Impression Lijiang" info for entrance fees to the park itself.  edit
  • Baisha Village (白沙村), (bus 6 (1y / ~30min; one problem, it's seem it's a recent service at oct 2011 and it is not labelled on all/some bus stop, one is near north entrance of black dragon pool)). A small village in Yulong Naxi Autonomous County, part of Lijiang city, well-known for its Jade Dragon Snow Mountain range. It is the original settlement of the Naxi people who came to the greater Lijiang Valley over a thousand years ago. Made up of at least 12 smaller villages, the main village is Sanyuan (三元村), which has one main stone street called of course, Baisha Street. It has a typical Chinese "old-town" tourist setup, consisting of a stone paved street with a mixture of Chinese trinket sellers-shops and several quaint cafés to stop at relax, have a drink some Yunnan coffee eat a Naxi Pie and avoid the crowded Lijiang. A great escape from Lijiang Old-town tourist trap, only 12 km north of town, you can rent a bike and get there in about 40 minutes. You should consider staying a few nights, in a Naxi family’s courtyard, no "hotel-Hostels" here. Even though almost everything costs you a ticket price to do in China these days you can do many things here for free! Like hike the local mountains through the high alpine botanical garden and search for herbs on your way to the Jade Dragon Lake, the backside of Snow Jade Dragon Mountain. Visit some of the temples or traditional Naxi houses of the area before they are gone.  edit

Local Hospitality
In Baisha village, there is an old woman named Liu who will sometimes stop tourists and invite them into her home. She is a very nice lady, who will show you pictures of people who have visited her home as well as messages that people have left in her guestbook. She will feed you snacks and tea and make you feel welcome. Before letting you leave, she will ask for a small 'donation' (around ¥10 per person).

  • Learn Chinese at Huayang Academy, No.113 Zhaihou Shangduan, Zhaihou Street, Old Town District, Yunnan, China, 0888-5189198 (), [1]. Huayang Academy Lijiang is the main Chinese language centre in Lijiang. Hauling offers low price accommodation, lessons and full X1 visa support. Students reviews are mostly positive with Huayang also having schools in Dali and Kunming. 5,000rmb per semester.  edit
  • Go hiking to local Naxi villages, Old Town Lijiang (Start in old town), 13769001439, [2]. Get out of Lijiang and discover the real place, by hiking in the Lijiang valley or in the hills to temples, lakes, villages and scenic lookouts. Agencies like Lijiang Guides can arrange trips to remote villages, as well as Tiger Leaping Gorge, Lugu Lake and Baoshan stone village.  edit
  • The Baisha Naxi Emboidery Institute, Baisha village (12 kms north of Lijiang), 13095230065. The Baisha Naxi Embroidery Institute. The mission of this institute is to protect, save, inherit. develop and promote the Naxi traditional hand-made embroidery.This institute is located in the Baisha Village, 12 kms away from the Lijiang city.There are many local embroiderers and many nice hand-made embroideries there.It is a typical Naxi style courtyard witht a very nice surroundings .It is a very beautiful place,you have to go there.  edit
Hiking outside Lijiang
  • Lijiang Xintuo Ecotourism, 13988826672, [3]. Nowadays many people feel it became too crowded in Lijiang, but there is beautiful nature to see around the area and quiet villages away from the crowds. Lijiang Xintuo Ecotourism is a community-owned company (a rare thing in Lijiang nowadays!) that strives to empower local people in Yunnan Province.Lijiang Travel Guide Travel to less known places around Lijiang to see lakes, mountains, animals and plants, or to some of the close-by Naxi villages, for a close direct experience of Naxi real village life. Lijiang Xintuo Ecotourism follow the Ecotourism criteria: nature based tourism, employing local Naxi and Yi ethnic minority trained guides, and 10% of its profit is given to a conservation and community development fund which provide services to community and schools.  edit

Buy[edit][add listing]

Loads of tourist shops available in old town. Probably overpriced, but Lijiang does not have as many cases of the Westerner price being too much higher than the Chinese price as in many other parts of China.

  • Burned wood carvings - One of the popular local specialties. Quality varies greatly by the individual artist, and prices vary by shops. Some shops do custom etchings of your face (near photo-realism) with Lijiang in the background. Expect to have your picture taken, then come back in a few hours.
  • Yak horn combs - Also popular, with some combs also carved from the yak hoof (the ones with the rougher edge on the handle).
  • Naxi clothing - For ¥5 you can get your picture taken in them without having to buy them.

Local skirts that include Ancient Egyptian designs maybe are actually pictographs the preceded Chinese characters.

  • Art and writing samples (东巴; Dōngbā) - The Naxi have the only living hieroglyphic language in the world, and shops with samples of it, or of the unique Naxi style art, are abundant.
  • Warm Clothing - In the Old Town warm clothing is quite expensive if you are just looking for something cheap to keep the chill out. The road just outside the town by the waterwheel has very cheap hats, mitts, and even long johns. Just turn left at the first intersection.
  • Small red coconut - DO NOT BUY a small red fruit shaped like a coconut. Actually, it is just a coconut painted red and sold for a very high price. This is a scam.
  • Naxi hand-made Embroidery, Baisha Village (12km north of Lijiang City), 13095230290. You can find many nice Naxi hand-made embroideries in the Baisha Naxi Embroidery Institute. Some of them are arts , very unbelievable, made by the famous Naxi masters.  edit

Eat[edit][add listing]

There are three primary types of restaurants in Lijiang: Naxi, Tibetan, and Sichuan. Some restaurants offer more than one type of food. Much Western food is also available, but more expensive. Lots of local snack-type foods available from street vendors, including:

  • Baba - a flat wheatbread available; a savoury version sometimes served with chili sauce and a sweeter version that tastes honey-flavoured.
  • Naxi style fried white cheese - A soft white cheese cut into slices then fried in a non-greasy batter. Served with sugar sprinkled on top and very delicious (only seen in restaurants).
  • Yak's milk yogurt - Has a bit of a different flavor than cow's milk yogurt, but very good. Commonly served with honey, muesli, and/or fruit. Can also be made into fruit shakes.
  • Fried yak meat - served on skewers.


Food within the old town tends to be pricier than outside of the old town, though some fancier food establishments have also started to open up in the surrounding neighbourhoods, such as near the newly opened Walmart in the south of town.

  • Baisha Aunt's Wu's Dumplings, (In Baisha Village, 100m south of the village gate. 26.952730, 100.216051). This small restaurant has very good home-made "shuijiao" (boiled dumplings). A nice stop during a ride through the countryside of Lijiang ! Around 20 yuan the 20 dumplings plate.  edit


  • The Bivou Café, 16 Zhonghe Village, Shuhe Old Town, 5 minutes walk from Shuhe North gate carpark (From the north gate, walk 30 metres towards Sifang Street, it is down an alley on the right, next to a farm), +86 888 5129449 (), [4]. 12-9pm. The food is mainly Western or simple Chinese fare such as burgers, sandwiches, spaghetti, pizzas, dumplings, noodles and fried rice sets. The burgers, pizzas and dumplings are very good and reasonably priced. They also serve Yunnan coffee, iced cold Shangri-La beer and great cocktails (from 38RMB onwards). Great view of local farm and snow mountain. Very nice collection of books on Yunnan & Lijiang, and friendly English-speaking staff offer good advice on travel and sights. Nice break from walking around Shuhe.  edit
  • Country Sky, Hongye Street, Shuhe Ancient Village (Just outside of Lijiang), +86 888 5178132. Serves both lunch and dinner and offers both vegetarian and traditional dishes at fair prices.  edit
  • Lamu, (On Xin Yi Jie (新义街) Just southeast of the water wheels). Serves Tibetan and Yunnan food (check the pages of the menu that aren't in English for this), along with some Western stuff. Nicely prepared and reasonable prices. Try the fried yak cheese balls - not at all greasy; actually quite light and sweet, like ricotta.  edit
  • N's Kitchen, 2/F, 17 Jishan Alley, Xinyi Street (Find your way to a small square in the old town some people call the grass selling square. The place is easy to miss because it is on the second floor. The entrance is by the southern entrance to the square, right across SUSAN'S NAXI), +86 888 5120060. Serves western breakfast, tasty sandwiches, monster burgers, and Italian-style thin crust pizzas. Big Qingdao beer or BeerLao Black for 15RMB, and Tibetan barley wine which is very drinkable. Free Internet and WiFi. And they have very nice bikes for hire. You could also get lots of informations of biking and hiking here. the view from the balcony is nice and you can chill out a while.  edit
  • Cornerstone Cafe, Near,Black Dragon Pond (The modern complex on Corner Yu Quan Road nr Black Dragon Pond). 10am -10pm. Opened in 2017 and one of the best spots in town for Chinese, Expat and Travellers diners. Awesome pizza, the only real Mexican food in Lijiang, homemade cakes and ice creams and the best Yunnan coffee. Great selection of everything, cooked very well and imported craft beers are the best and cheapest you'll find in the new town. A hangout spot, great for planning onward trips, super relaxed and full of character. Run by a team of local minority Pumi, the boss is "Simeon" and supported by a local American guy called "Crispin". A slice of home for travellers and Lijiang Expats alike.  edit
  • Qiuyuege Restaurant, 32 Cunwen Sect, Xinhua Street, +86 888 5125671, 8885211. Serves Naxi foods. Free live music and free Internet and WiFi.  edit
  • Lijiang Gulou Restaurant (丽江古楼; Lìjiānggǔlóu), 49 Yellow Hill Lower Section, Xinhua Street, +86 888 5186923. Serves Naxi and Sichuan food. The best ma-po tofu!  edit


The Crowne Plaza in the old town has 2 restaurants. One is a coffee shop specialising in South East Asian and Western dishes, and a buffet priced at Rmb 200. The other is Chinese, which serves decent Naxi cuisine, and for a change it looks better that what is dished out in the Old Town. This restaurant has a fabulous view of the Jade Dragon Mountain, so a lunch or an early dinner can be enjoyed with a fab backdrop. The other bonus is that both the restaurants serve a good variety of chilled white wine, which otherwise is unavailable in most places in China. Meal for 2 with reasonable wine could cost around Rmb 600 with a decent wine, and 3 dishes.

Drink[edit][add listing]

There are a couple of local drinks worthy of special mention. Lijiang Yinjiu and Sulima (both commonly available in Lijiang) are modern renditions of ancient beer types of the Naxi and Mosuo people and far more enjoyable than the typical bland Chinese lager. Yunnan is famous for tea, as well (though Pu Ehr itself is way down south on the road to Xishuanbanna) and every fourth shop is a tea shop specializing in the length and breadth of Chinese tea, the likes of which you will not find in your average Western Chinatown.

Unlike the rest of China, Lijiang's cafés and restaurants shut down around 11PM. Several of the bars along bar street face each other across the narrow canal. From here singing erupts across the water by opposing teams of (usually) girls. In order to keep the singing going small donations are normally requested from the patrons.

Several western bars are beginning to spring up, notably:

  • Stone the Crows (乌鸦飞了 Wuya Feile), Wuyi Street at Wenzhi Alley 五一街134 文治巷 (From Sifang St (四方街), follow Wuyi St for 5 minutes and take the only diagonally facing street heading downwards on the right. As you walk along the street you'll see the big mural on the side of the pub.), 15608888739, [5]. 4pm - very late. One of the longest established bars in Lijiang, Stone the Crows offers a quiet alternative to Lijiang's standard fare. This foreign run Irish pub has a clientèle that is a nice mix of locals and tourists. Unlike the places on Bar Street where you'll pay high prices for cheap beer, Crows offers a wide selection of imported craft beers and wine at decent prices. They also have (strong) cocktails and shots including a few that are exclusive to the bar. The kitchen (which is open until 2am) has good pizza, burgers and steaks. With a TV for live sports, and a free pool table, it's a great place to relax and ask the two owners John and Russ what to do in Lijiang.  edit
  • Youya Shiguang Coffee (优雅时光咖啡), 61 Qiyi Street at Xingwen Lane 丽江古城七一街兴文巷61号 (In a small street opposite from a place called Mufu. From the water wheels head in a southerly direction past Sifang road. Once you pass Puxian Temple turn left and follow the road for about 200 meters into a small alleyway. The coffee shop is on your right.), 18213279338, [6]. 10:30AM - 12:00AM, M-F. A charming coffee shop nestled in a small alleyway close to Puxian Temple. Serves a wide range of excellent coffee drinks (espresso, iced, cappuccino) made from imported beans. A bit pricey but definitely better than other coffee shops in Lijiang. Drink quality is comparable to a higher end cafe you would find in the US. Also serves a range of teas, wines, and desserts(tiramisu, waffles, ice cream). Nice couches, relaxing environment, good ambiance + fast wifi...a perfect place to relax after a long day of exercise. 35-50rmb for a coffee, depending on size, 40-80rmb for teas, 30-40rmb for desserts.  edit
  • Cornerstone Cafe, Near,Black Dragon Pond (The modern complex on Corner Yu Quan Road nr Black Dragon Pond). 10am -10pm. Opened in 2017 with imported craft beers are the best and cheapest in the new town. Excellent Yunnan coffee, selections of teas and other drinks. A small sun terrace and a small but ok selection of wines. Normally 5-10 craft beers available with a great selection of food from Pizza and Mexican to healthy salads and snacks. A solid hangoutwith a family vibe. check for the location and up to date reviews  edit

Sleep[edit][add listing]

An inn near a channel

Lijiang has plenty of hotels and guesthouses to fit all budgets and desires. Some prices below are very out of date and you should check official online sites for updated prices! Some of the "budget" guesthouses now charge four times as much as prices listed below. There is an official Old Town Maintenance Fee of 80 yuan per person to visit some attractions in the old town, such as the Black Dragon Pool park.

It is sometimes difficult to find specific addresses in Old Town so do ask the frontdesk to pick you up from an obvious location, such as the local police station, the Water Wheel or MacDonalds or KFC. One of the best option, especially in low season, is to walk around town and check actual prices and rooms to see which suits you best as there are many different options to choose from (in the winter ensure there is a heated mattress pad or heating in the room as the nights are quite chilly).

There are a few budget guesthouses that cater to foreigners, Garden inn, Timeless and Mama Naxi (the official Garden inn and Mama Naxi are not located in Wuyi Street, both have moved out of the old town because of the tourist fee). All these guesthouses have a staff that speaks good english and can help you out with information. They also enable you to meet other people. You can get a private room there or dormitories for average price. Across from the Timeless there is a tea store that is home to the world's cutest dog, 球球 (qiu qiu).


There are hundreds of cheap Chinese guesthouses not listed below. To find them it's best to ask around, or stand in the train station bus drop-off stop (East of the water-wheels central square) with a big backpack and look lost. Local ladies will approach you: expect to get a basic double room for around 100Y-150Y, depending on the season. Prices usually more than double during the peak season.

  • Enjoy Inn, "No.39. From the bus station it's best to take a taxi (7-10RMB approx). Taxis cannot drive into the centre but they can get you very close. Ask the driver to take you to the 'first middle school of Lijiang'(丽江市第一中学)then walk straight into old town along the quaint Chinese street with the stream on your right and various dumpling restaurants on your left. Enjoy inn will be on your left after 300 meters - just at the end when the road swings right with the make-shift football pitch on your left. Really charming little place situated on a very Chinese street with food vendors in the morning and some nice little dumpling houses. Easy walking distance to centre but in a much nicer and less hectic part of the town. Lovely communal open-air courtyard to relax in. Run by Joy who speaks very good English and is extremely helpful. A tea-enthusiast who is happy to share her stash over a chat and is very happy to point you in the right direction if you're interested in buying some. Knows a lot about the area and very happy to help. Wifi throughout, computers available, hot water etc Phone: 13688766022 - English or Chinese" Single Room/Twin Room Shared Bathroom 40/70RMB,Double Bed Private Bathroom 160RMB, Family Suite 360RMB.  edit
  • Lijiang YiJing Inn, No.140 Wenming Lane, Yishang Street in the southeastern part of the Lijiang old town. Well-furnished, owner-operated modern inn. 12 minute nice walk to the busy city centre. Located away from rowdy pubs; several mini-supermarkets and bus station nearby. Friendly owners; speedy Wifi connection. Phone: 13658898459 email: [email protected] - Limited English but can drop them an email in English Single Room/Twin Room Private Bathroom 120 RMB onwards.  edit
  • Happiness Inn, Lijiang old town, Xin Hua Street Huang Shan Shang Duan (Easy to find. Coming from the waterwheel on Dong Da Jie, go to Sifang square and turn right up the hill at the end of the square. The Inn is on the left about 5 minutes up the hill.), 15987932280 (English OK), 0888-8897356 (Chinese only) (). Cute, quiet Inn near the top of the hill. Run by very a friendly English-speaking young woman who goes out of her way to help guests with exploring the town and surroundings and often invites guests for communal meals. "¥80-120".  edit
  • Long time no see Guesthouse (in Chinese: 好久不见), Lijiang, Old City, five one street, Vincent lane No. 46 (in Chinese: 五一街 文生巷 46号 (spoken: wu yi jie, wen sheng xiang, 46 hao)) (It is in the outer part of the old town area. You have to pass first the Garden Inn and the Panba Hostels on the Wenming Lane, Wuyi Street, Old-Town District, Lijiang. On the next crossroads behind the Panba turn right and after 15 meters you will see it on the left side), +86 18636153997; +86 1533440 8870 & +86 182 8885 7737; 0888 - 5390 1114 (), [7]. checkin: almost anytime. Very nice and very beautiful guesthouse with a very friendly women, who is the owner. It is located in the outer part of the Old City in a very quiet area. The house is older then 100 years, but completly renovated. The rooms are clean and big, the free wi-fi is very fast, the beds are in very good condition and the bathrooms are almost perfect. The laundry is for free and sometimes some friends of the owner come to cock for the people in this guesthouse. All rooms have flatscreens with satellite-TV. If you want something really good for your money, then you should go there! Double and Twin Rooms for around ¥100, very big room for about 160¥.  edit
  • Naxi guest house, Mishi Alley, Xinyi Street No.45 Lijiang Old Town (From bus station take no 8 or 11, from Train Station take bus no 4, all this buses will drive you to Lijiang water wheel entrance, else from Airport take bus Blue Sky hotel then take taxi for RMB 7. From the water wheel is 10 minutes walking on Xinyi Street to find Mishi Alley. Since its located next to International Youth Hostel, The naxi guest house often visited as an alternative of (often) fully booked dorm room of the famous Youth Hostel. To make it easier to find it along confusing labyrinth of Lijiang Old Town, it is right in front a luxurious public toilet of East River Hotel.), 18288853430 (). checkin: Flexible. Run by friendly guy who smartly use english-chinese translator to communicate with foreign guests. Easier to book online book through email or SMS for him to reply in English. Do Not Confuse it with mama naxi guest house! Naxi guest house only offer private rooms (with bathroom inside, heater blanket, hot shower) in bargain able price start from RMB 70. Total 6 rooms with various options, such as single-room (which is enough for 2 people), double-room, twin and triple bed-rooms. Some of the rooms come with own PC for those who forget their wifi gadgets. Else, theres always really good wireless connections. Also offer one load laundry cost RMB 10 and common tour like of most Guest Houses around. The atmosphere is rather quite, with nice small terrace to read books or just hanging out. The owner is single guy who live in the guest-house and spent lots of his time serving the guests as friends, often offer his own meal and hot drinks and very much welcoming to every guests who return the same hospitality for others. RMB 70.  edit
  • Nguluko Guesthouse, Yuhu Village 雪嵩客栈 玉龙县白沙乡玉湖村 (Located in a picturesque village about 20 minutes by taxi outside of Lijiang, directly at the foot of Jade Dragon Snow Mountain.), 15008792927 (). ¥100 per night, including breakfast and dinner.  edit
  • Panba International Youth Hostel, Wenming Lane, Wuyi Street, Old-Town District, Lijiang (In the north-eastern part of the old town of Lijiang, right next to the Ruji Elementary School.), 0888-5119077 & 0888-8895606; 13187793929 ([email protected]), [8]. checkin: 12.00; checkout: 12.00. A cozy and quiet hostel, now newly renovated with a charming open-air terrace to provide great views of the old town and mountains surrounding it, situated a short stroll away from Sifang Jie, the main market square of Lijiang's old town. The staff speak good English. Want to ask for directions to find a good place to eat or get a drink? Don't bother! Free internet and WIFI, with trips to all the major attractions that Lijiang is known for.also arrange all the national E-train tickets, ¥10 commission Dorms from ¥30, Privates from ¥120 (Discounts for bookings from & YHA members).  edit
  • TianYiJiao 天一角, 束河古镇街尾村88号 (In ShuHe village, on SiFangJie main road, take the small road left of Le Petit Paris about 100m, turn right and walk 50m.), 13758815544. Newly opened guesthouse, beautifully furnished, with open air courtyard. Free wifi, public kitchen, free washing machine. Areas for chatting, drinking tea and beer. Rooms have ancient Chinese locks. Owner Mr Wen doesn't speak English, but has travelled all over China, and each night happily shares tea with guests. Double rooms from ¥150.  edit
  • After Sunday Guest House, (In ancient Shuhe Village outside of town, just follow Hongye road (the road with the main canal) past the little pond and you will see it on your left). Quiet and the people who run it are friendly. Nice and clean rooms. Double ensuite ¥120 per night.  edit
  • Be With Me Inn, (In ancient Shuhe Village outside of town, on a side lane off a street with no name that is referred to as ''the bar street'' and meanders along one of the main streams that crisscross the town, it is 5 minute walk from Laosifang Street (the old square)), +86 13708822910 (). Another wonderful option is this charming inn. The owner is a young woman who speaks little English, but is extra accommodating and provides a wonderful service.  edit
  • Dongba House (东巴豪斯客栈; Dōngbā Háosī Kèzhàn; formerly called the MCA Guesthouse, or MCA Dongba House Holiday Inn), 16 Jishan Lane, Xinyi Street, Lijiang Old Town (古城区新义街积善巷16号; Gǔchéngqū Xīnyìjiē Jīshànxiàng), +86 888 5175431 (fax: +86 888 5175431). In a traditional Naxi courtyard house. Cheap but clean. The restaurant has a great view of the old town below. Free internet and free wireless available. Dorms ¥20-30, doubles ¥50.  edit
  • Garden Inn (May's Garden Inn), 7 Wenming Lane, Wuyi Street, Old Town District, Lijiang, Yunnan (Garden Inn is located on the east side of Lijiang old town, a few minutes walk from the center of the old town (Sifang Square)), +86 15108873494 (), [9]. checkout: 12:00pm. Beautiful views of the mountains and valleys below. Rooms are comfortable and clean. Great atmosphere and wonderful staff that go out of their way to make sure your experience in Lijiang is a special one. Free Internet. Staff can organize trips: Lijiang to Qiaotou ¥35; Lijiang to Lige island ¥80 one way. Many more trips on request. Airportshuttle if you order in advance ¥80. Garden Inn has moved to north of the old town in a small alley. Dorms from ¥40 (updated july 2012), standard rooms from ¥120 and luxury rooms from ¥100..  edit
  • Home Sweet Guesthouse (丽江古城佳家客栈; Lìjiānggǔchéng Jiājiā Kèzhàn), 56 Xingwen Lane, Qiyi Street, Lijiang Old Town (古城七一街兴文巷56号; Gǔchéng Qīyījiē Xīngwénxiàng) (Near Xingwen Primary School in Lijiang Old Town, public transport nearby, 4 minutes' walk south of Sifang Square), +86 888 5188638 (). Restfully quiet and immaculate, newly built architecture in classic Naxi style. Each of 14 ensuite rooms has a private shower and toilet. Free use of PCs with wireless Internet access. Owner is warm and hospitable, proficient in Cantonese, Chinese, English. Can assist guests with tourist information. ¥120-140.  edit
  • International Youth Hostel (丽江老谢车马店青年旅舍), 25 Jishan Alley, Xinyi Street, Old Town, +86 888 5116118, 5102345 (), [10].  edit
  • Shanghai Family No.68 Hostel, No.68 Xingwen Alley, Qiyi Street, (), [11]. Contrary to its name, the place is not like a hostel. Judy, who speaks good English, goes above and beyond to make your trip enjoyable. Remarkable hospitality.  edit
  • K2 International Youth Hostel, 1 Guailiu Lane, Kangpu Road, Shuhe Old Town, +86 888 5130110 (, fax: +86 888 5130115), [12]. ¥120-160.  edit
  • Lijiang China Xiyuan Inn, 27 Guanyuan Road, Guangyi Street, Lijiang Old Town (Will be almost impossible to find on your own), +86 13368880039, [13]. Very nice budget place, owned by one young Chinese couples. Rooms around a beautiful courtyard with nice corners to sit around, growing book exchange as well as the best Yunnan tea. The (partly) english speaking staff helps with travel arrangements.  edit
  • Luminn (留名客栈; Liúmíngzhàn), Qiyi Street, Xingwen Alley, Lijiang Old Town, +86 888 5128707, +86 13108889313. Guesthouse started by a Chinese young couple who both graduated from English major. There are 10 guestrooms with clean and big bathrooms and big comfortable beds. There is a bar upstairs and a big kitchen and dinning room downstairs. Free washing machine available. ¥70.  edit
  • Mama Naxi's Guesthouse, 22 Lijingwan Jixiang Road, 674100 Lijiang, China (It is best to telephone upon arrival and they will send someone to guide you), +86 888 8881012, 5185930. The official Mama Naxi has moved south of the old town. Mama Naxi 1 is being run by others, Mama Naxi 3 is closed. New location is very nice on Kanzhong road 22. Quiet location and comfortable guesthouse. Family dinner in evening is very nice and the family is very helpful with arranging pick-up, breakfast, laundry, etc. This is an excellent place to share rides with others. Mama not only provides excellent large communal meals (at 18:30, ¥25) but can arrange transport in minivans. Train booking commission is ¥20 or ¥25 which is more than some hostels. Free internet and WiFi. Very clean and fun budget guesthouse that is a favorite for backpackers of all ages. Dorms ¥30, double from ¥100.  edit
  • Mu's Garden Guesthouse, 27 Guanyuan Road, Guangyi Street, Lijiang Old Town, +86 13368880039 (, fax: +86 888 5101188), [14]. Rooms around a beautiful courtyard. ¥120-160.  edit
  • Old Cattle Hotel, (From the bus station take the road opposite, turn left up a stone-paved road beside a stone stream, take a left at the top, and you will be in the old town, the hotel will be on the left). Inside a traditional courtyard building. A bit cold in the rooms in winter, but have lots of bed covers. Doubles ensuite ¥50 (2005).  edit
  • The Yuegulou Inn, (In the golden region of Lijiang Old Downtown), +86 888 5125671, 8885211, +86 13187791705 (, fax: +86 888 5121181), [15]. A historical cultural hotel in Naxi-style, offers 32 standard rooms at various price points. Free internet is provided in most rooms. They provide free airport pickup or dropoff if you stay two or more days. Other facilities include free washing machine, in room phones, flat screen TVs in some rooms and electric blankets. ¥100-360.  edit
  • Story Inn, +86 15887565098. A nice and very friendly Inn, located in the southern part of the Old City. Very helpful staff, quiet, area, free wifi in the room, simple breakfast (included in the rate) in the courtyard. Laundry available, if you ask nicely. Rooms equipped with TV, kettle and in-built radiotor heater and heating blankets. As you arrive in Qiyi Street, give them a call to pick you up. The place is not easy to find, but worth it! Double and Twin Rooms for around ¥150.  edit
  • Baisha Holiday Resort Lijiang(丽江白沙别院精品度假酒店), 中国云南省丽江市白沙古镇三元村33号 No.33 Sanyuan Village, Baisha Ancient Town, Lijiang,Yunnan, Yunnan Province,China, 0086-888-5482288 (Mobile: 0086-18608888143), [16]. Baisha Holiday Resort Lijiang is located in Baisha Ancient Town in the Eastern Himalayas of Yunnan Province. It is a quaint private inn which has sustained traditional Naxi characteristics. Baisha Ancient Town is about 10KM away from Lijiang city center, 20KM away from the Lijiang Railway Station and 40KM away from Lijiang International Airport. Housed in 800 year old, traditional hand-crafted Naxi architecture and environment, nice guest rooms with full western facilities. Each room has a full bathroom, HD digital TV, and wireless internet. Some rooms also have a loft for full views of nearby Jade Dragon and its plush foothills. On some nights, a Naxi cultural dance and fire party with a traditional Naxi orchestra is arranged to play, as well as a barbecue with hotel guests and staff. Overall, a friendly and hospitable environment. Bikes are available for rent. Standard rooms start at ¥150.  edit
  • Yosemite Inn, No.39 Xin Wen Ln., Qi Yi street in old town of Lijiang(丽江古城七一街兴文巷39号)phone: 18213292375. The hotel is conveniently located inside the old town with the view of Yulong mountain. The room is very comfortable and clean. Free laundry service with dryer, which is uncommon in this region. The owner is a well-travelled Chinese American who has settled in Lijiang for its beauty. Both the owner and her assistant A Liang are very hospitable and will go extra miles to meet the needs of their guests. You will enjoy a ceremonial tea served by A Liang while discussing various sightseeing/dining/shopping options. You can book the hotel on Agoda or Booking -- Family Suite 180RMB, as of Apr. 2019.  edit


  • The Sun Valley Inn (丽江束河悦然居精品客栈), No. 6 Zhonghe Road, Shuhe Old Town, Gucheng District, +86 888 5185331 (). Sitting at the center of the less touristy old town of Shuhe. The Sun Valley Inn is a Chinese style boutique inn built in an ancient residence with a history of over 300 years, and has a view of the Jade Dragon Snow Mountain. Centered around the a beautiful garden, single, double or twin rooms, as well as family suites are designed to offer travelers with a wonderful lodging experience in an oriental ambience, and the place is surrounded by the most popular foodies’ picks in town. The owner speaks English, Cantonese and Mandarin Chinese and is really helpful in organizing tours, trips, and arranging a car/driver. ¥268-600.  edit
  • Lazy Tiger Inn (懒老虎客栈), No.54 Zhonghe Road, Shuhe Old Town, Gucheng District, +86 151 26099450 (), [17]. This small inn has been built will all the charm of local chinese style and all the quality construction of a western hotel. The tastefully decorated, very clean rooms include all the amenities for a very comfortable stay. Each room includes a cozy tatami tea corner, heavenly mattress and beddings, satellite TV with movie, sports and business channels and available in-room massage service. Spent time drinking tea and listening to the owner play guqin in the tea room, enjoy a nice bottle of wine in the lounge bar or shop in the adjacent Museum Shopping District. Being foreign owned and operated means you will can be served in english, french or mandarin. This guest house is perfect if you're looking for the comforts you typically find in the higher end hotels but in the warm and friendly atmosphere of a friend's house ¥320-680.  edit
  • The Bivou Lijiang (丽江佖屋), No.16 Zhonghe Cun, Shuhe Old Town, Gucheng District, +86 888 5129449 (), [18]. This 16-room designer boutique hotel is built in two traditional 400-year-old Naxi farmhouse courtyards, next to a real communal farm. Very clean, quiet and stylish rooms which include floor heating, modern amenities and very comfortable beds and lots of sockets. Very large public spaces, cafe, bar & lounge with well-stocked library and DVD movie room with over 700 DVDs. Singaporean owned and managed. Winner of 8 Tripadvisor Travelers' Choice awards from 2015-2018, includng #2 of Top 10 Small Hotels in China in 2017. Friendly staff speak good English and are very knowledgeable and helpful about travels around the area. Provide good hand-drawn maps and restaurant recommendations. ¥480-1280.  edit
  • Baisui Inn (百岁桥客栈), 25 Baisui Fang, Xingyi Street, Lijiang Old Town, +86 13688766252 (). A 300 years old Naxi traditional house renewed in 2004 with a pebble cobbled courtyard surrounded by three wooden buildings. The owner Mrs Ho is a 55 years old Naxi lady who has been living in the old town since she born. As the old Naxi saying says: one Naxi lady equals to 8 horses,the poor lady works all day long in the Inn. The inn is very peaceful,quiet,and good location.Haba a 25 years old tour guide who speaks very good English and Japanese, he is a nephew of Mrs Ho, assists Mrs Ho in the inn most of the days.  edit
  • Bruce Chalet (纳西明珠渡假居), Ronghua Road, Shuhe Old Town, Gucheng District, +86 888 5188784 (), [19]. Charming guesthouse with a open courtyard and view of the Jade Dragon Mountain. Clean and tidy, each room has a Western toilet, heated mattress, and flat-screen TV; some rooms also have a balcony view of the mountain. There is also free wifi, spring water, and computer access in the common room. Breakfast is available for ¥10 and there is self service laundry for ¥10/load. The owner speaks English, Cantonese and Mandarin Chinese and can help you organize tours, trips, and arrange a car/driver. Located 7-10 minutes walking from Shuhe Old Town, this guesthouse is ideal for travelers looking to escape the touristy parts of town and want to just relax. ¥170-450.  edit
  • Crescent Moon Inn, 54 Xingwen Lane, Qiyi Street, Dayan (5-10 minutes walk to the south of Siyang Square in the old town), +86 888 8885880, [20]. Opened in 2007 the inn is housed in an picturesque old Naxi building which had been completely gutted, and converted into an inn with 15 large rooms each with a ensuite shower and Western toilet. All rooms (which are spread over two floors) face onto a interior courtyard. There is internet connection in every room as well as a shared computer in a reading area beside the lobby. Rates from ¥160.  edit
  • Lishui Tianjing Inn, 26 Jishan Lane, Xinyi Street, Lijiang Old Town, +86 888 5153058 (fax: +86 888 5153080), [21]. Practical amenities, excellent service, and rooms that are cozy in a prime locale. Experience the old world charm of Lijiang Old Town, a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Rates from ¥208.  edit
  • Lijiang Tianlun Guesthouse, (Close to the main street), +86 10 65187710-110, +86 13401175525 (, fax: +86 10 65187712). A traditional building of Naxi Culture. Opened in 2008, with 24 hour hot water and good English service, kitchen, book bar, tour guidance, Naxi breakfast, airport pick-up. Different type rooms are available. ¥180-560.  edit
  • Moon Inn, Wuyi Road, Dayan (In the old town), +86 888 5180520, 6661073. A delightful, upmarket hotel. Surrounding an open air courtyard the 10 double and twin rooms all have ensuite bathroom and Western toilet. Some have marvellous views over rooftops to the mountains. At night, as the roofs come alive in coloured lights, the effect is spectacular. The Li family run the hotel, and offer a computer with internet connection in the lobby, laundry and meals. Listed rates from ¥400, discounted from ¥200.  edit
  • New Senlong Hotel, Minzhu Road, Lijiang Old Town, [22]. Four-star traditional Naxi palace-style hotel that is adjacent to Ancient Town. Inside the hotel’s traditional setting, modern facilities and services can be enjoyed. Amenities include 214 deluxe guestrooms, The Mushroom King restaurant, KTV, spa, and roof garden to name a few. Guaranteed online reservation is available. Listed rates from ¥1,080, discounted from ¥360.  edit
  • Karma Design Hotel (情人結精品客棧), Feihua Chushui, Kangpu street, Shuhe Old Town ([email protected]), +86 0888 5125938, [23]. checkin: 2:00pm; checkout: 12:00pm. A cozy and quiet design hotel at the core position of the Shuhe Old Town, top 10 most creative design hotel in Lijiang, 8 different rooms special for lovers/couples. Friendly staff, you can ask for any information you need. $77.  edit
  • Lost Horizon Vacations Villa, Shangrila Avenue NO299, Lijiang Guanfang Garden Private Villas, Old Town District, Lijiang, +86 18088222800, [24]. checkin: 12:00 PM - 6:00 PM; checkout: Until 12:00 PM. This villa is located within the first five star resort of lijiang, by shuhe old town, 15 minutes by taxi to lijiang old town, and a walking distance of 10 minutes to snack streets, restaurants and a supermarket. ¥200-1400.  edit
  • Artistic suite (丽泽雅舍古城画院客栈), No.63, Xing Wen Lane, Qi Yi Street, Gu Cheng Town, +86 8885186009, [25]. checkin: 12:00 PM - 6:00 PM; checkout: Until 12:00 PM. Artistic Suite combines Naxi classical style with modern equipment and commits to create a comfortable and excellent environment where you can enjoy the beautiful time in Lijiang. ¥500 -1000.  edit
  • Zhengyang Inn- Li River Hotel (桂林正阳驿站), No.6-6,Yiren Road,Xiufeng Distict Guilin, Guangxi 584001 China, + 86 18007873678, [26]. checkin: 14:00; checkout: 12:00. Zhengyang Inn is set in Guilin, 100 metres from Zhengyang Pedestrian Street and 200 meters from Li River . Guests can enjoy the on-site bar. From 200 RMB.  edit
  • Lijiang Zen Garden Hotel - Wuyi Yard (丽江瑞和园(五一院)), No.36 Xingren Alley, Wuyi Road, Dayan Town , Lijiang, Yunnan, 674100, China, +86 8885189799, [27]. checkin: 14:00; checkout: 12:00. he Zengardenhotel Wuyi Yard is very well situated in the center of the Old Town of Lijiang, next to the Si Fang square and the stone bridge. From 350 RMB.  edit


  • Pullman Lijiang Resort & Spa, Shuhe Road, Shuhe Old Town. Tel: 0086-0888-5300111. [28]. Possibly the most comfortable place to be in Lijiang is here, with rooms starting at 1,400++ CNY per night and villas starting at 2,400++ CNY per night (as of Sept 2011). The interiors are of contemporary Chinese design, reflecting Naxi architecture and style. Amenties include new 42” LCD TV and sliding doors for washrooms. For cuisine, there is fine international cuisine, with local Chinese food in their restaurant. Jade Dragon Snow Mountain backdrops the resort. Water is free and transportation is well. The hotel is about 7 minutes away from Shuhe Ancient Town. Email [email protected]
  • Banyan Tree, Lijiang, Yuerong Road, Shuhe Old Town. Tel: 0086-0888-5331111. [29]. For those with deep pockets the Banyan Tree Lijiang is possibly one of the world's nicest hotels with rooms at 3,000++ Yuan per night (price of Apr 2008). Placed way out in the middle of farmland, this hotel is quiet, peaceful, and from afar looks like a fortress village. The "rooms" are small villas built in traditional farmhouse architecture, comprising of a bath, study and bedroom with a direct view of the Jade Dragon Snow Mountain, a private garden, patio, and an outdoor jacuzzi. The food here is mediocre but the prices are comparable to the touristy parts of the old town with meals costing 30-40 yuan. However the water is outrageously expensive with a bottle of Perrier setting you back a staggering 45 yuan, making it more expensive than a glass of wine (38 yuan). A taxi is required to get to and from the hotel (10-15 yuan to the old town). (current Nov 2006) NOTE: This hotel is quite far from the center of Lijiang city.
  • Guanfang Hotel. Although not located in the old town (it's in the new city), you can get a taxi ride from this hotel to the old town's entrance for a reasonable fee (less than 10 yuan - US$1.50). Guanfang hotel is actually part of a hotel-chain owned by a Yunnanese hotelier group - it has "Guanfang hotels" in other cities in Yunnan province. The Lijiang Guanfang hotel is built to a resort (bungalow) style. The hotel ground area is very big and you have to walk quite a distance from the hotel lobby to your assigned bungalow (containing a number of rooms). But the rooms are pretty spacious and it's beautifully set and are between 4-5 stars.
  • Intercontinental Lijiang Old Town. Located at the edge of the old town, minutes walk away from a bustling food street, the Intercontinental Lijiang is built in an architectural style similar to the old town itself. The hotel grounds are beautiful and the rooms are spacious and comfortable. A breakfast buffet (7:00-10:00am), catering to both Western and Chinese palettes, is included and is a definite highlight. The hotel also boasts a high-end Sichuan restaurant with well-prepared, albeit expensive fare.

Stay safe[edit]

Even though hotels and tourist attractions are generally peaceful and safe, Lijiang is not absolutely crime-free, with incidents of drunken fights amongst tourists and petty crime still being reported. However, the government has taken steps to install surveillance cameras in the streets, and cops patrol more actively in recent years. Nonetheless, beware of crimes involving "alcohol touts", women who are hired by bars and restaurants to lure unwary male tourists into these establishments before handing them a hefty bill for purchases made by their "companion" (who may in the meantime have secretly left).

Some shops in the old town have signs refusing business to Japanese citizens. Even though most of these are ploys to attract business from nationalistic Chinese travelers, if you are a Japanese citizen it would be wise to refrain from speaking Japanese in public.

There are 13 ethnic groups living in Lijiang. When visiting local families, be respectful of their etiquettes and taboos. Ask before taking photographs of old people and children, and do not walk into local houses even if the doors are not closed as there may be guard dogs inside.

In the Lijiang Old Town, it is not allowed to ride the bike or any motorised vehicles.

Lijiang has a clear annual distinction between the rainy and dry seasons. The rainy season lasts from mid June to October, especially in the months of July, August and September. Make sure you bring along an umbrella, non-slip shoes and sufficient warm clothing as it can be cold even during these summer months.

Travelling in summer, T-shirts and trousers are usually enough in the daytime, but it is advisable to take some warm clothes for the early mornings and evenings, and for the other seasons. What’s more, don't forget to protect yourself from the strong radiation from the sun.[30]

Get out[edit]

  • Shuhe Old Town, 5km north from Lijiang Old Town. Sometimes considered Lijiang's best-kept secret, about 200 years older than the latter and with some well-preserved houses, quiet alleys and one of the oldest stone bridges in all of Lijiang. There are two sections to Shuhe Old Town, the southern (newly-constructed and artificial) section with the "Main Entrance" requires an entrance fee of ¥40 (which you can avoid by asking taxis to drop you off at the "North Gate") mainly visited by Chinese in tour groups, and the northern (the real thing!) with Shuhe Old Town Square (named Sifang Street), Nine Dragon Pool, Treasure Mountain, temples and quaint alleys and canals. Take public bus No. 6 (from Lijiang old town, drops at Shuhe North gate 束河上村) or bus No. 11 (from Lijiang bus station and Lijiang Old Town, stops at roundabout 2km outside of Shuhe Main gate) and minibus service from Lijiang. There is also a 3RMB shared minibus service to Shuhe which departs from outside Likelong Supermarket at Fuhui Road, which leaves when it's full.
  • Baisha means White Sands in Chinese, first place that the Naxi settled into when they arrived in Lijiang. It is now a quiet village which is slowly opening up to tourism. Its main attraction is the Baisha Frescoes, ancient wall murals depicting Tibetan, Naxi, Bai and Han influences. There is also a Doctor Ho, a famous herbologist who was sent to Baisha during the Cultural Revolution to be re-educated by the farmers and who is known to have healed a lukemia patient using mountain herbs from Jade Dragon Snow Mountain. Dr. Ho speaks good enough English and will happily provide some herbal medicine for whatever problem you have (but be sure to check the price first). Rent a mountain bike or electric scooter from Shuhe and ride for 15-20min to Baisha, get there towards the second half of the afternoon to avoid the crowds. Baisha's also a great spot to go for a day's hike, surrounded by nature, you can hit the tracks fairly quickly.
  • Qiaotou for Tiger Leaping Gorge - regular bus services are available from the main bus station. You can also take any Shangri-La bound bus and have the driver drop you off at Qiaotou or Hutiaoxia Town, which is halfway between Lijiang and Shangri-La. Cost is ¥50. If you take a Shangrila bus, make sure to ask for the ticket to Qiaotou only, otherwise they will charge you the full fare to Shangrila.
  • Shangrila, it is ¥60 from Lijiang to Shangrila by express bus. about 4h trip, bus every hour.
  • Dali, direct bus to Xiaguan, Dali new town. You need to take another bus to Dali ancient city. There is also direct bus from Lijiang to Dali ancient city, ask the hotel or tour agent to book the ticket. All of the Lijiang buses pass the Dali old town on the way to Xiaguan. Just tell the driver to drop you off in Dali.
  • Shaxi ancient town, between Dali and Shangri-la. There is no transport direct to Shaxi, you need to arrive at Jianchuan first. An express bus operates from Dali(Xiaguan) to Jianchuan, and also one from Lijiang to Jianchuan, you need to check the schedules. A minibus will also take you from Lijiang to a border of Jianchuan and Lijiang, where you need to take a minibus to Jianchuan city, and continue with another minivan to Shaxi old town. Or you can just flag down any bus going From Dali to Shangri-la and tell them you're getting out in Jianchuan. Shaxi is considered the most well-preserved market town along the Ancient Tea Horse Road. Nice Friday market and square. Very picturesque. Nearby is the attraction Shibaoshan, famous for its Buddhist grottoes and mischievous monkeys.
  • Lugu (or called Lugu Lake), northeast of Lijiang in Ninglang county near Sichuan border. Known to be the home of the matriachial Mosuo ethnic group, a sub-branch of the Naxi. Direct bus from Lijiang, the road is very rough for the first 30 min. Takes about 5-6 hours, but a new road is being constructed which will reduce the journey to 2-3 hours. Since 2016 Lugu is also served by an airport. Increasingly popular with Chinese tourists.
  • Kunming, the province capital. There are train and bus services direct to Kunming from Lijiang.
  • Jinghong, Xishuangbanna. Daily non-sleeper couch bus departs at 7:30 and arrives about midnight. ¥242 (October 2016).Create category
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