1. Dianchi Lake
Perched in Anning City of Yunan Province, the Tianchi Lake (one of must-see Kunming tourist attractions) is nestled on the foot of West Hill, with Daguan Park in north and Jining County in south. It is 5 kilometers far from Kunming City and is the sixth largest inland freshwater lake in China, which is reputed as "pearl on plateau" and has been a favorable scenic spot since ancient times.
Dianchi Lake, also referred as Kunming Lake, is created due to long-time crustal movement, and it is 1886 meters above the sea level. Embraced by tens of peaks and luring waters, Dianchi Lake is just like a sparkling pearl embedded on Kunming. The lake is crescent-shaped, stretching 39 kilometers from north to south and 13.5 kilometers from west to east. Occupying an area of 300 square kilometers, Dianchi Lake is the largest lake in China. More than 20 rivers converge into Dianchi Lake.
Dianchi Scenic Area is quite mesmerizing, where natural scenery and human landscape blend to each other perfectly. It could be divided into two districts, namely west district and east district. What makes Dianchi Lake distinctive is that the color of its water changes with clouds and sunshine of the day. Around Dianchi Lake also lie many places of interest, such as West Hill, Daguan Park, Yunnan Ethnic Village and so on. These featured attractions are all ideal getaway for visitors to get close to nature to relax themselves.
Admission Ticket: Free
Opening Time: 8:00——18:00 Phone: 0871-3164961
Location: At the foot of West Hill, Kunming (Kunming tours)
How to get to: Take the bus No. 24, 44 to get there.
2. Golden Temple
Golden Temple, also referred as Taihe Palace and Bronze Tile Temple, is perched on Mingfeng Hill (Singing Phoenix Hill) in northeast of Kunming City. It is a well-known Taoist temple in Yunnan since Ming dynasty. Since the temple is made of bronze, which glitters like gold under the sun, it is named as "Golden Temple". Golden temple is one of the four largest bronze-made temples in China and it is the best-preserved and most important one among them.
The temple was first built in 1602 during Ming Dynasty, imitating the Taihe Palace in Wudang Mountain in Hubei Province. In 1637, the temple was removed to the top of Jizu Mountain in Binchuan County for political reasons The Golden Temple situated on the Mingfeng Mountain now was rebuilt by Wu Sangui, a satrap in Qing Dynasty.
The magnificent Golden Temple is just a part of Taihe Palace, a Taoist temple in China (an optional attraction for China tour deals). The temple is 6.7 meters in height, 6.2 meters in depth and 250 tons in weight. and it is the largest bronze-made architecture in China. The beam, windows, curtains, Taoist statues, inscribed board and couplet inside the temple are all made of bronze. Inside the temple stands the statue of Zhenwu, a Taoist deity, which is exquisitely in carving, magnificent in spectacle and solemn in appearance. On each side of statue of Zhenwu deity stands a soldier armor-dressed and weapon-held, appearing bold, powerful and vigorous. There are also two swords preserved inside the temple. One is the 20-kilogram sword with Big Dipper engraved, and the other is the 12-kilogram-weight broadsword with a wooden handle. Behind the temple grows a camellia and two crape myrtles planted in Ming dynasty.
Admission Ticket: 30 Yuan
Opening Time: 07:00–19:00
Location: Mingfeng Mountain, Eastern Suburb, Kunming
Recommended Visiting Time: 2 hours
How to get there: Take Bus No. 10, 71, 76 to get there.
There are also coaches launched from train station to Golden Temple Scenic Area.
For more via Kunming travel guide.
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