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Dianchi Lake & Western Hills

Dianchi Lake Scenic Area, Kunming

 Dianchi Lake

In the southwest part of Kunming City there is a beautiful lake to enjoy all year round. Its name is Dianchi Lake, also referred to as Kunming Lake. It was formed twelve million years ago by a tempestuous movement of the earth. Dianchi Lake is considered the vastest and the sixth biggest freshwater lake in China. The lake's scenery is quite elegant; lovely blue green waves, tiny sailboats in the distance, mountains, trees and flowers make you feel extremely relaxed. Gorgeous landscapes and vegetation surround it. Dianchi Lake certainly deserves its reputation as the pearl of the region.

Getting there:
Bus No. 24 or 44 , exit at Haigeng Park.

Nearby Attraction - Daguan Park

Daguan Park neighbours Dianchi Lake in the western part of Kunming City. The scenery here is quiet and beautiful. Rock formations, pavilions, bridges and crystal clear water are interwoven, providing you with the perfect chance to escape from the hustle and bustle of modern city life.

Daguan Park gets its name from Daguan Pavilion, considered the spot worth visiting the most in this vast park. Daguan Pavilion is on the list of the most famous Chinese pavilions. It is a three-storey wooden construction in the classic elegant shape, originally built in 1828. By standing on the top floor of this pavilion, one can see the far-flung and spectacular view of Dianchi Lake, Western Hills, and other sites. This is why it is named Daguan Pavilion (Grand View Pavilion). There are also three other stone pavilions in the lake in front of Daguan Pavilion. Many well-known scholars have visited Daguan Pavilion and left a great number of poems and odes.

Admission Fee: CNY 10
Recommended Time for a Visit: One hour
Opening Hours: 08:30 to 18:00
Bus Route: 4, 54

Taihua Temple on Western Hill, Kunming Western Hills

During the Tang Dynasty (618-907), Western Hills was called Biji Mountain. In the Yuan (1271-1368) and Ming Dynasties (1368-1644) it was called Taihua Mountain. Nowadays, people are again calling it Western Hills because it is located in the west of Kunming City.

Western Hill, Kunming, Yunnan

With its thick forest and flourishing flowers, Western Hills is thought of as the most pleasant place in Yunnan Province. Looking from Kunming City, Western Hills resembles Sleeping Beauty. Her long, flowing hair is the water of Dianchi Lake, enhancing its charm and grace. A well known legend about Western Hills and Dianchi Lake tells the story of a princess who had grown so tired of the loneliness in the palace that she escaped to marry a young man and lead a happy life. Her father eventually separated the happy couple and secretly killed her husband.

The princess was in such extreme sorrow that she wept for a very long time. Her tears then became Dianchi Lake and her body turned into the Western Hills.

Western Hills is now a forest park. There are many scenic spots here, such as Huating Temple, Taihua Temple, Sanqing Pavilion, and others.

 Getting there:
Bus No.5, exit at Liangjiahe, and then take No.6 bus. Alternatively, one can take one of the special sightseeing buses in front of the Yunnan Hotel.

Admission Fee: CNY 30 for the Dragon Gate
Recommended Time for a Visit: 40 minutes
Opening Hours: 08:30 to 18:00