Get­ting there

NewsChina - - HISTORY -

There are flights from many ma­jor cities to the un­der­sized Dali air­port, but flights are of­ten ex­pen­sive. Fly­ing into nearby Li­jiang is of­ten much cheaper, and or­ga­niz­ing a ride to Dali us­ing a ride-hail­ing app is easy. By the end of the sum­mer, a high-speed train from Kun­ming should be open. There are also overnight trains from Kun­ming – book in ad­vance as they of­ten sell out. It takes an hour to get to the Dali Old Town from the air­port by taxi – there are no buses. It takes about two hours to get to the Dali Old Town from Li­jiang air­port. Note that Dali City is di­vided into the Old Town, and the new town of Xi­aguan, which is 30 kilo­me­ters away and to be avoided, ex­cept for its week­end sec­ond­hand mar­ket.

When to Go

The best time to visit is spring and au­tumn. The sum­mer rainy sea­son is pleas­ant enough, but the sky is of­ten over­cast with a lit­tle rain each day. Win­ters are sunny, dry and pleas­antly warm in the day­time, but the night­time tem­per­a­ture can dip to 0 Cel­sius. The spring San Yue Fes­ti­val, marked ac­cord­ing to the lu­nar cal­en­dar, fea­tures a huge mar­ket with tra­di­tional Bai mu­sic on free out­door stages and three days of horse rac­ing. The main tourist streets in Dali are jammed on ma­jor holidays. Dali and Erhai have many ex­tremely taste­ful bou­tique ho­tels opened by Dal­i­for­ni­ans, so ex­pect to find a lovely place to stay in a per­fect lo­ca­tion at a rea­son­able price out­side of ma­jor holidays. Couch­surf­ing or Airbnb-type ser­vices are an ex­cel­lent op­tion for an in­sider ex­pe­ri­ence. Rent­ing an elec­tric scooter is an ex­cel­lent way to get around town and see the lo­cal sites.

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