China, Yunnan province, Lijiang, listed as World Heritage by UNESCO, Black Dragon Pool and Jade Drag

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Black Dragon Pool Park


On the northern edge of town is Black Dragon Pool Park; the view from here of Jade Dragon Snow Mountain is an obligatory photo stop in southwestern China. The Dongba Cultural Institute is part of a renovated complex on the hillside inside, an interesting stop for Naxi cultural artefacts and scrolls featuring the unique Naxi pictograph script.

Trails lead up Elephant Hill (象山, Xiàng Shān) to a dilapidated gazebo and then across a spiny ridge past a communications centre and back down the other side, making a nice morning hike (but bring your passport to register before you start the hike).

The park is included in the all-encompassing Lijiang Old Town entrance ticket, but in practice this is the only place it seems to be checked.

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Nearby Lijiang attractions

1. Dongba Cultural Institute

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The Dongba Cultural Institute is part of a renovated complex on the hillside north of the old town. Here you can see Naxi cultural artefacts and scrolls…

2. Museum of Dongba Culture

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The Museum of Dongba Culture houses displays on Naxi dress and culture, Dongba pictographic script, Lijiang's old town and the dubious claim that the…

3. Waterwheel

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This wooden waterwheel is a popular photo op.

4. Lijiang Old Town

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The old town is centred on busy and touristy Old Market Square, with the Waterwheel defining the northern edge and the lively Zhongyi Market marking the…

6. Lion Hill

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Towering over the west side of Lijiang's Old Town, Lion Hill's 23 hectares of park land are a pleasant diversion. The obvious high point is the panoramic…

7. Puxian Temple

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This pleasant little temple at the heart of the old town is among the best-preserved in Lijiang. Look for signs off of Chongren Alley near the Wanzi…

8. Wàngǔ Lóu


At the peak of the park atop Lion Hill – views of Lijiang from here are unbeatable. Take a moment as well to admire the 1st-floor reproductions of Dongba…