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Yunnan Travel Guide

Picture of Yunnan Location MapYunnan is situated on a plateau in southwest China formed with the rising of the Himalayas from the ancient sea. In the northwest it borders on the eastern section of the Himalayas, thus it seems to be the last step to Tibet, the "roof of the world". "Yunnan" in Chinese means "south of the clouds". Various colors and shapes of the clouds over this plateau give Yunnan its full name "South of the Colorful Clouds". These beautiful rosy clouds always appear in the south, which is thought to be an auspicious sign. Yunnan people, therefore, are proud of living on this blessed land.Regions

Yunnan is famous for its "autonomous prefectures" for various ethnic groups, it is the province who has the most ethnic groups in China. We can divide Yunnan into 7 regions by its orientation:


Picture of Kunming CityKunming is without a doubt the heart of Yunnan Province. It borders Sichuan Province to the north, and its convenient for travelers come into either by plane or by train.

Central Yunnan

Central Yunnan is west of Kunming and where the hills start becoming more rugged. This is a very popular region for travellers. Includes: Dali Prefecture and Chuxiong Prefecture.

Eastern Yunnan

Eastern Yunnan is filled with the gorgeous scenery of the rolling hills transforming into the high, hilly plateau of Yunnan. This area includes many tourist sites not regularly visited by travellers. Includes: Zhaotong Prefecture, Qujing Prefecture and Wenshan.

Southeastern Yunnan

Southeastern Yunnan is amazingly diverse, in one day you could pass through arid badlands, lush pine forests, barren hills and tropical rainforests. The urban centres in this area of Yunnan are very compact and it is quite easy to get around from city to city to see the sights. Includes: Yuxi Prefecture and Honghe Hani and Yi Autonomous Prefecture.

Southern Yunnan

Picture of Southern YunnanSouthern Yunnan is an ethnically part of China. Jungle covers most of the terrain and this is probably the best region of China to escape the winter. Includes: Simao Prefectureand Xishuangbanna, a major tourist area.

Western Yunnan

Western Yunnan is home to some very rugged, off-the-beaten-path terrain. It is now one of China's most alluring destinations. Includes: Lincang Prefecture, Baoshan Prefecture, Dehong Prefecture and Nujiang Prefecture.

Northwestern Yunnan

Picture of Northwestern YunnanNorthwestern Yunnan is a chunk of ancient Tibet within Yunnan's boundaries. Many traveller's come here to experience 'Tibet' without having to enter the actual province. You will find towering mountain ranges and fascinating culture here. Includes: Lijiang Prefecture, Deqin Prefecture and Shangri-la.


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