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Yunnanyi Overview

Geographical Location

Yunnanyi is located in Xiangyun County of Dali Bai Autonomous Prefecture, located in western Yunnan Province, China. The whole town covers an area of 3.8 square kilometers and about 66 kilometers away from Dali City and 256 kilometers away from Kunming, about four hours’ drive from Kunming.


The legend of the “southern source of the clouds”

The name of Yunnan province is usually translated by “South of the Clouds”. A legend linked to the village of Yunnanyi itself and that dates back to the Han dynasty (200 BC – 220 AD) tells us otherwise.Two thousand years ago, the emperor Han Wudi (汉武帝) wanted to know where clouds formed. He sent a group of his best men to the south of the empire. When they arrived in the village of Yunnanyi, they saw clouds forming over the Longxinghe mountain range. To them, the clouds (彩云) came into existence in the south (南现) and Yunnanyi was named the “southern source of the clouds” (云南之源).


Yunnanyi is located in Xiangyun County of Dali Prefecture, about four hours’ drive from Kunming. As the earliest place named Yunnan(the place to the south of the colorful cloud), Yunnanyi is the former site of Yunnan County of West Han Dynasty and Yunnan Prefecture of Wei and Jin Dynasties; in the Yuan, Ming and Qing Dynasties, Yizhan (remount or post stations) were set here, so it is named Yunnan Yi. Due to its significant geographic location, Yunnan Yi used to be a must-take position since it can connect Dali, Chengdu, Kunming, South and West Yunnan; a time-honored ancient passage stretches through the small village with well conserved folk residences of Bai.


In the 1940s, the Yunnan-Myanmar Road, the Hump Flight, and Sino-Indian Petrel Pipe converged with the Ancient Tea-Horse Road, making Yunnan Yi a place of great interest. In Yunnan Yi, one could choose to visit two special museums, namely the Horse Caravan Museum and the Museum for Transportation in the World War Two; the retired aircrafts of the Flying Tigers, and the aircrafts shelter in the farmers’ land are also special.

In spite of its history, Yunnanyi remains a quiet village, out of the path of tourists.The fall atmosphere and the corn and red chilies drying in front of these centuries old wood and brick houses surely contributed to make Yunnanyi of the most picturesque village in Yunnan. Also, if you are looking for a 100% tourist-free day-trip destination from Dali ancient town, Yunnanyi is waiting for you.


Administrative Division

There are 8 Towns and 2 Townships under its jurisdiction in Xiangyun:Xiangcheng Town(祥城镇),ShalongTown(沙龙镇),Yunnanyi Town(云南驿镇),Xiazhuang Town(下庄镇),Pupeng Town(普淜镇),Liuchang Town(刘厂镇),Hedian Town(禾甸镇),Midian Town(米甸镇),Luming Township(鹿鸣乡),Dongshan Yi Ethnic Township(东山彝族乡).

Ethnic Groups

It inhibited by 471,600 people and over 6 ethnic groups live in Xiangyun,including Bai(9.3%),Han(82.97%),Yi(7.2%),Hui(0.11%),Lisu(0.24%),Miao(0.18%).

The major festivals around Xiangyun County include the Torch Festival,Dumb God Day,Song Festival in Tianfeng Mountain,AA festival.


Xiangyun County

Location of Xiangyun County (pink) and Dali Prefecture (yellow) within Yunnan province of China
Location of   Xiangyun County (pink) and Dali Prefecture (yellow) within Yunnan province of   China








 • Total

2,425 km2 (964 sq mi)


 • Total


 • Density

180/km2 (470/sq mi)

Postal code


Area code(s)



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