Top things to do in Northwest Yúnnán

Top Choice Bar in Shangri-la

Raven

Relocated since the 2014 fire, the Raven remains the best bar in town (and in northwest Yúnnán), with a huge range of beers and spirits. There's a big bar counter to sit around, sofas to sink into, New York–style pi…
Top Choice Yunnan in Lìjiāng

Tiāntiān Xiān

Locals flock here for the superb grilled fish and chicken and soy-bean-paste dishes (get here before 7pm or it will have run out). But all the Naxi specialities on offer are fantastic and great value. No English spo…
Top Choice Tibetan in Shangri-la

Silent Holy Stones

Re-opened after the 2014 fire in a new location and still a favourite spot for local Tibetans, this relaxed and welcoming place specialises in yak meat hotpots (from ¥148). Great mómo (馍馍, Tibetan dumplings) too, wh…
Mountain in Lìjiāng

Yùlóng Xuěshān

Also known as Mt Satseto, Yùlóng Xuěshān soars to some 5500m. Its peak was first climbed in 1963 by a research team from Běijīng and now, at some 35km from Lìjiāng, it is regularly mobbed by hordes of Chinese tour g…
Glacier in Déqīn & Kawa Karpo

Míngyǒng Glacier

Tumbling off the side of Kawa Karpo peak is the 12km-long Míngyǒng Glacier. At over 13 sq km, it is not only the lowest glacier in China (around 2200m) but also an oddity – a monsoon marine glacier, which basically …
Lake in Shangri-la

Emerald Pagoda Lake

Also known as Pǔdácuò (普达错), a Mandarinised-version of its Tibetan name, Emerald Pagoda lake is 25km east of Shangri-la. The bus to Sānbà can drop you along the highway. From there, it's 8km down a trail (a half-hou…
Historic Site in Lìjiāng

Lìjiāng Old Town

The old town is centred on the busy and touristy Old Market Square. The surrounding lanes are dissected by a web of artery-like canals that once brought the city’s drinking water from Yuquan Spring, on the far outsk…
Area in Tiger Leaping Gorge

Báishuǐtái

Báishuǐtái is a limestone deposit plateau 108km southeast of Shangri-la, with some breathtaking scenery and Tibetan villages en route. For good reason it has become probably the most popular back-door route between …
Monastery in Shangri-la

Ganden Sumtseling Gompa

About an hour’s walk north of town is this 300-year-old Tibetan monastery complex with around 600 monks. Extensive rebuilding has robbed the monastery of some of its charm, but it remains the most important in south…
Tibetan in Shangri-la

Rebgong

Excellent joint for Tibetan eats, even if it is somewhat lacking in atmosphere – and always busy with locals. The house speciality is yak meat hotpot, and they do a small version for two people (¥88), but the mómo (…