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Yunnan Ethnic Minorities

Yunnan Province has the largest number of ethnic minorities in China. It has 52 ethnic minorities among them 25 minorities with more than 5000 people. The ethnic minorities scatter around Yunnan and mix with the majority of Han people. Some ethnic groups lives in hilly areas, some lives in bustling city, and travelers could see them in the tourist destinations - Kunming, Dali, Lijiang, Shangri-La, Yuanyang and more places.

Below are the introductions of some selected ethnic minorities in Yunnan helping you understand better about their language, religion, festival, costumes and even find the right places to meet them.

Yi Ethnic Minority

Place to See: Chuxiong, Honghe, Kunming
Language: Yi
Religion: Polytheism
Festival: Torch Festival, Chahua Festival, Yi New Year

Related Tourist Attractions to Explore

Kunming Stone Forest

Stone Forest, located in Shilin Yi Autonomous County 90 km from Kunming, is a notable set of limestone formation which listed in UNESCO World Heritage Site. Explore Great & Lesser Stone Forest, Naigu Stone Forest in the scenic area. Enjoy the legend of Ashima, a beautiful girl of the Yi people. Visit Sani Village near Stone Forest and know more about Sani people, one of the branches of Yi minority.

Recommended Kunming Tour

>> 3 Days Kunming Spring City Tour (Kunming / Stone Forest / Kunming)

Stone Forest Yi Minority

Yi Minority in Stone Forest, Kunming

Bai Ethnic Minority

Place to See: Dali, Yunnan
Language: Bai
Religion: Buddhism
Festival: March Fair, Torch Festival

Related Tourist Attractions to Explore

Xizhou Ancient Town

About 34 km from Dali Old Town, Xizhou Ancient Town is honored as “The Museum of Bai Architecture” with more than 100 old Bai traditional buildings. It has kept the buildings from Ming, Qing and Modern China. Explore Seven Inch Book Mansion, Yang’s Family Courtyard and Yan’s Family Courtyard. In Yang’s Family Courtyard, visitors could enjoy the Three-courses Tea of Bai Ethnic Minority.

Dali Old Town

Dali Old Town is situated at the foot of Cangshan Mountain and west of Erhai Lake. Explore leisurely in the old town by visiting temples, old courtyards, cafes, shops and bars. Enjoy some local snack while walking along the streets. Some important Bai Ethnic festivals like March Festival, Torch Festival, Bai Raosanling Festival take place in Dali Old Town.

Recommended Dali Tour

>> 4 Days Dali Highlights Leisure Tour (Dali)

Dali Bai Ethnic Minority

Bai Minority in Dali

Naxi Ethnic Minority

Place to See: Lijiang, Yunnan
Language: Naxi
Religion: Dongba Religion
Festival:Bangbang Festival, Sanduo Festival, Dongba Festival, Torch Festival, July Festival
Show:Naxi Ancient Orchestral Music

Related Tourist Attractions to Explore

Lijiang Old Town

Lijiang Old Town, listed in UNESCO World Cultural Heritage site, is the place to explore Naxi culture like the architecture, lifestyle, music, art and more. If you are lucky, you could see and join the old Naxi people dance at Sifang Square. The folk dance by Naxi people is performed everyday.

Naxi Dongba Culture Museum

Dongba Culture Museum, close to Black Dragon Pool Park, shows the Dongba culture of the Naxi people. It has more than 2500 Dongba cultural relics and various other historical relics which makes the museum with the most abundant Dongba relics.

Baisha Mural Paintings

Visitors could see Baisha Mural Paintings in Baisha Village, 10 km from Lijiang Old Town. The mural painting is the reflection of different religious culture and artistic forms of Buddhism, Taoism and Naxi Dongba religion. There are 44 Baisha Frescoes.

Recommended Lijiang Tour

>> 4 Days Lijiang Natural & Cultural Tour (Lijiang)

Lijiang Naxi Ethnic Minority

Naxi Old Women in Sifang Square, Lijiang Old Town

Hani Ethnic Minority

Place to See: Yuanyang, Honghe
Language: Hani
Religion: Buddhism
Festival: October New Year Festival, June Festival, Fresh Rice Festival

Related Tourist Attractions to Explore

Yuanyang Rice Terrace

Yuanyang Rice Terrace is the masterpiece of Hani people. Yuanyang Rice Terrace is composed of several scenic areas, including Duoyishu Rice Terrace (especially for sunrise), Bada Rice Terrace, (for sunset) Laohuzui Rice Terrace (especially for sunset) etc. The mushroom-like houses can be seen throughout the villages. The vast majority of Hani women still wear traditional clothes as their daily attire. You could see the local Hani people working in the fields, attend the local markets and and other daily activities.

Recommended Yuanyang Tour

>> 5 Days Kunming, Jianshui & Yuanyang Rice Terrace Tour (Kunming / Yuanyang / Jianhsui / Kunming)

Hani Ethnic Minority in Yuanyang

Yuanyang Rice Terrace and Hani Ethnic Minority

Tibetan Ethnic Minority

Place to See: Shangri-La, Yunnan
Language: Tibetan
Religion: Buddhism
Festival:Gedong Festival, Tibetan New Year

Related Tourist Attractions to Explore

Songzanlin Monastery

Located 5 km from Shangri-La town, Songzanlin Monastery, also Garden Sumtseling Monastery, is the largest Tibetan Buddhism monastery in Yunnan. It is reputed as “Little Potala Palace”. It has six main structures including eight colleges. The Gedong Festival is held in the monastery annually on 29 November.

Dukezong Old Town

Dukezong Old Town is the largest and best-preserved town kept Tibetan-style dwellings with a 1300-year-old history. Visitors could see authentic Tibetan dwellings, majestic prayer halls and pagodas, prayer flags and Buddhist sutras. Enjoy folk dance with local Tibetans in Sifang Square of the old Town.

Recommended Shangri-La Tour

>> 4 Days Best Shangri-La Tour (Shangri-La)

Tibetan Ethnic Minority in Shangri-La

Tibetan in Songzanlin Monastery

Plan a China Tour with Diverse Ethnic Minorities?

Check the Best-selling China ethnic minority tours, which covers the diverse ethnic groups in Yunnan, Guizhou, Guangxi, Tibet and Xinjiang etc. Remember, all can be customized to satisfy your needs at best price!

5 Days Kunming, Jianshui & Yuanyang Hani Minority Tour
(Kunming / Yuanyang / Jianshui / Kunming)
5 Days Kunming Lijiang Minority Tour
(Kunming / Lijiang)
6 Days Best of Yunnan Tour
(Lijiang / Shangri-La / Kunming )
6 Days Kunming, Dali & Lijiang Minority Tour
(Kunming / Dali / Lijiang )
8 Days Yunnan Diverse Minority Tour
(Kunming / Dali / Lijiang / Shangri-La)
11 Days Amazing Yunnan Tour
(Kunming / Yuanyang / Jianshui / Kunming / Dali / Lijiang / Shangri-La)
10 Days Yunnan & Guizhou Amazing Minorities Tour
(Kunming / Dali / Lijiang / Guiyang / Kaili / Guiyang)
10 Days Yunnan Tibet Discovery Tour
(Kunming / Lijiang / Shangri-La / Lhasa)


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