Kunming, the capital city of Yunnan Province, enjoys the reputation of the “Spring City” thanks to its mild and pleasant weather throughout the year. Being the centre of politics, economy, culture, science and technology, transportation and communication in Yunnan, it is one of the key cities for tourism, trade, cultural exchange and information technology, etc.
The City of Kunming lies in the low subtropical zone of the North latitude and monsoon climate in plateau mountainous region. It has long sunshine duration and short frost season due to the influence of the warm and moist airflow in the Southwest Indian Ocean. With the annual temptation of 15℃ and 2200 hours of the annual sunshine, Kunming enjoys mild and spring like weather through four seasons, being one of the world’s renowned travel destinations.
But if you only have one to two days in Kunming, what would you do? It is not an easy job to take it all in, but we do have some suggestions from our guests on where to go and what to do to in such a tight schedule in Kunming.
You might have heard of the romantic and enticing “sleeping beauty” from fairy tales, but in Kunming, locals have their own sleeping beauty lies on the bank of the famous Dianchi Lake. Western Hills are the mountain ranges which runs 40 km along Dianchi Lake, and its altitude is between 1900 m to 2350 m. Looking from afar, Western Hills present itself as a sleeping beauty with distinct features. A panorama view of the entire city from top of the hill is one of the highlights of the trip. And another place of interest here is the Dragon Gate and the Dragon Gate Grotto which were completed during 1781 to 1853. A stone archway, a stone room and several dedicated sculptures are all carved out of a same rock.
It saves a lot of time when you take a cable car from the Western Hills to the foot of the hill and then it is just 10 minutes by mini bus from there to Yunnan Nationalities Village. As Yunnan is home for 25 ethnic minority groups in China, it is worth a visit to experience the rich culture of Yunnan in just one place. Yunnan Nationalities Village covers a land area of 1264.96 mu, and 463.96 mu of water area, which is the microcosm of Yunnan’s dynamic culture. Dai, Bai, Yi, Naxi, Wa, Bulang, Jino, Lahu, Hani, Zhuang and other 15 ethnic minorities’ featured villages offer you a general idea of their culture and tradition.
Being the most well-known dishes in Yunnan, this dish is available in most of the restaurants in Kunming. It is served in a big and deep bowl, in which the hot chicken soup is prepared, and sliced chicken, fish, pork go into the soup, and then vegetables and rice noodles add to the bowl. Its philosophy is that one could have soup, meat, vegetable and the main course, in this case, rice noodles all together in one bowl in such a simple cooking method.
Being one of the most popular parks in the city centre, Green Lake Park is also winter home for red beak seagulls from Siberia. Its name Cuihu, originated from its verdant plants and clear water. Pottering around the park, one could always spend a relaxed afternoon and yet found some discoveries along the walk. Photographers fill the park during summer to capture the most beautiful picture of the lotus in the ponds. Retired people and some ethnic groups take corners of the park to share their passion in dancing, singing, chess competition and mostly, socialising.
On Wenlin Street, there are a great variety of restaurants that offer authentic Yunnan food with very reasonable price. No matter which one you choose to have dinner, don’t forget to try some wild mushrooms, Yunnan goat cheese cake, mashed potato (Yunnan style), deep fried beef and vegetable soups. There are bountiful vegetables available in Yunnan throughout the year, vegetarians could always find something nice to eat.
Dynamic Yunnan, a grand and primitive song and dance medley choreographed and starred by renowned dancer, Ms. Yang Liping. The show is another cultural masterpiece following The Five Golden Flowers and Ah Shi Ma. It shows the different dances of the minority tribes in Yunnan province. It is both vibrant and colorful as the dancers perform in their traditional costumes. One of the leading dancers performs the peacock dance with vivid imitation of the movement of the peacock, which is highly recognised by audiences from home and abroad.