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Forums > Travel Yunnan > Dali Market,Third Month Fair

Due to the pandemic, The Third Moon Fair, aka March (lunar calendar) Street Fair, aka Guanyin (Kwan-yin) Fair has been cancelled along with other public venues. Local vendors were supposed to occupy old town Dali with bustling life for March Fair in mid-April (Georgian calendar). For a while now, tour group ban to Yunnan have been reinstated.

As some may know, Guanyin (the goddess Avalokitesvara) Fair is the biggest week-long festival celebration for the Bai ethnic minority in Dali. Too bad.

Here's a good piece on its...

"History And Origin

Currently there is no reliable record of the start of March Fair. A local legend offers an interesting explanation which goes as follows: At the beginning of the Tang Dynasty, the devil called Luocha occupied the territory of today's Dali and persecuted the common folk. During the zhenguan Period, Kwan-yin from the west(today's India) subdued the devil and saved people from the suffer. Ever since, people would gather at the ancient town, offering vegetables to Kwan-yin. Even though the legend fails to give a reasonable and convincing reason on the history of the occasion. It at least shows the fair was at its first stage related to religion.

Present-day March Fair

Now March Fair has become a prosperous commercial fair with tens of thousands of participants and a total volume of trade of over ten millions each year. Besides the Bai ethnic people, other minority groups such as the Yi, Tibetan, Naxi, Nu, Hui in that region will all throng to the fair that day. During the March Fair, the streets at Dali town are compete with temporally stalls selling a mind-boggling variety of items, highlighted by ethnic minority souvenirs.

Visiting Dali during the March Street Fair is a refreshing experience. It is the best season of the locality. Though lingering traces of snow are still visible at certain less-shone places of the Cangshan Hill, azaleas have come in bloom and the blackish hill looks like a girl’s flushing, pinkish face. Belts of white clouds drift around the hill’s waist, and the Erhai Lake at its foot is dotted with white sails and islands. Water ripples, and the lake looks like a big loving eye, with willow twigs gently brushing against its bank like fluttering eyelashes. The cheerful season makes it an ideal time for a festival like March Street Fair.

Prevalent in Dali, the festival was initially a Buddhist religious event. According to legends, Avalokitesvara Bodhisattva (more popularly known as “Guan-Yin-Pu-Sha” among Han Chinese population) would come to Dali and give preaching to local people. Therefore, at this time every year, believers would set up cloth sheds to worship him, giving rise to an annual Buddhist temple fair where sutras were chanted and offerings made.

It happened that Dali was a traffic hub – the Tea-Horse Trade Route runs through here – and believers who came for the religious events from various parts of the region would carry bundles of commodities for trade. The temple fair has gradually developed into a folk commodity trade fair in western Yunnan with nationwide influence. Dali horses, for example, were traditionally imported to China’s inland regions through this fair.

The fair usually lasts for around a week at the foot of the Cangshan Hill. Attending the fair are not only the Bai people, but also other ethnic groups in nearby regions – the Han, Tibetan, Yi, Naxi, Lisu, and Hui peoples – who get dressed in festive attires, herd livestock and carry forest and farm products and home-made daily necessities for trade, making the square a bustling market place. People trade during the daytime, and indulge themselves in singing and dancing and performances at night. Folk sports like archery, horse racing, and ball games are played, too, adding a touch of masculinity to the soft breeze and sunshine of springtime."

Forums > Travel Yunnan > Dinosaur park between Kunming and Chuxiong

High Speed Rail (train model CRH2A travelling at ~200 - 250 km/hr) from Kunming Station to Lufeng South Station takes 37 minutes for only 37 RMB (second class seats). Other HSR routes may take a few minutes longer.

Yes, stopping at Lufeng South en route to Dali.


No results found.


Appreciate the update.

It's entirely possible the starting point of the new light rail would be located near Yuquan Road (玉泉路) in the proximity north of Yunnan Tourism and Culture College (云南文化旅游学院).

The open track of the light rail visibly runs parallel to Yuquan Rd. This road is renamed "旅游环线" further up north, though still labelled as Route S223 if navigating on maps. A swathe of land is available to the east of S223, compared to areas south of tourism college. Details of the stations should be announced in the months to come.

As for public transport connections to the light rail. Bus 11 may approach the potential station starting point, while bus 101 should reach even closer to the designated location your Lijiang friend described.

Both bus routes start at Lijiang Old Town. Bus 11, often packed with locals, terminates at tourism college along S223. Bus 101, which caters to tourists, travels all the way to the main entrance visitor's center of Jade Dragon Snow Mountain with fixed rate of 15 yuan per pax, notwithstanding the alighting point.

A heads up for commuters going up the mountain:

The bus 101 driver will ask to see negative test result (within 48-hour period) upon boarding. More strictly enforced if boarding 101 at the preliminary 忠义市场 Lijiang Old Town bus station.

En route to the national park gate, all passengers' temperatures will be scanned, movement tracking and health codes will be inspected at a security check-point prior to reaching the Dongba area.

At this time, entering the east portal access through the main gate on S223 would encounter stringent measures compared to the south portal access across from Yuhu Village.

Downloading offline map apps for hiking/tubu is recommended as network signals are weak or nonexistent deep into the mountain trails.

Yesterday (on May 5, 2022), the 14.7km railway tunnel of Jade Dragon Snow Mountain was finally penetrated after eight years of toil by a thousand workers.

This is not the same panoramic light rail in Lijiang discussed previously.

The Jade Dragon Snow Mountain Tunnel, which exits the Jinsha River Tiger Leaping Gorge, is considered one the most arduous and important tunnel sections of the 139km Lijiang Shangri-la Railway. Also dubbed Lixiang Railway, aka 丽香铁路.

Slated for completion this year, the Lixiang Railway consists of 13 stations, crossing 34 bridges, and cutting through 20 tunnels.

The travel time will take about half an hour from Lijiang to Shangri-la, passing through Lashihai, Jade Dragon Snow Mountain, Tiger Leaping Gorge, and Haba Snow Mountain.

So far, 19 of 20 tunnels of Lixiang Railway have been completed. The remaining one being the 9,523-meter Haba Snow Mountain Tunnel, currently under construction.

Hopefully by the end of this year, it will only take five hours by high speed rail to travel to Shangri-la from Kunming.

Total cost of this endeavor is estimated ~10.5 billion yuan, but a vital link for the planned Yunnan-Tibet Railway.

For more details of the geological challenges and photos:

A new light rail is being built in Lijiang that will reach Yulong Snow Mountain foothills in 20 minutes, traveling a distance of 20.45 km from the city's South.

Rail workers donning orange are visible along the incomplete track doing work, even during Labour Day holiday..

Slated for completion in December, this project is touted as "the world's first tourist train with a panoramic view of the mountain."

The illustration of this train is pretty cool:[...]

Update on bus #17 station, which is located at above photo of Yuhu Village Central Plaza (玉湖村广场), the terminal station. Final bus leaving the Yuhu Village foothill to 象山市场 (SE of Shuhe Old Town) is at 19:00pm. First bus 7am, to and fro.

Near the Yuhu reservoir, excavation of additional artificial lakes are being constructed by the boulder paved roads. The Lijiang government is doubling down on Jade Dragon tourism recovery in the post-pandemic.



For a limited time until June 26, 2022, the 66th top floor observatory will be open to public for free. Visiting hours: 14:00 - 21:00, weekends and holidays. One of the best breathtaking views of the cityscape. Great for family. Below the skyscraper is intersection of MRT Line 3 (pink) with Line 2/1.


For those following the tragic saga of the baby calf elephant (born at Kunming Zoo), who was forcibly separated from its mother to perform as solo act elsewhere for profit, there's finally some good news. After months of social media uproar and complaints over the cruel treatments of the calf in tears during training in leaked vids, the calf is soon returning back to our local zoo. The visibly depressed mother and calf will soon be reunited after a brief quarantine period. One extra star for the zoo for adhering to the voices of the public. A step in the right direction. More compassion for our animal friends in captivity.