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Approximately 180 kilometers north-west of Dali, ideally located on the cusp of the Himalayas is the historic old city of Lijiang. Lijiang Old Town was named a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1997. Lijiang is separated with an “old town” and a “new town”. Enter through the gates of the Old Town and it’s a picturesque spot with winding, renewed cobblestone roads.
An ideal spot to catch a bird’s eye view of the town is from Lion Hill; about a 15-minute climb and also the location of the Wangu Pavillion, a restored Qing Dynasty building with over 10,000 dragon image carvings.
Lijiang’s history dates back over 1,000 years and it’s the home of the traditional Naxi culture. There are still Naxi locals in Lijiang today. Their culture is unique to Yunnan Province as well as China’s ethnic minorities as it is one of the only ancient cultures that still use a pictographic script. Some murals are scattered around the town of Lijiang that display the ancient Naxi script.

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