Dali lies on the shores of the majestic Erhai Lake and enjoys a year-round temperate climate and a backdrop of spectacular mountain scenery. Among the main attractions here are the Three Pagodas, some of the biggest and best preserved in China, one of which dates back over 1,000 years to the time of the Nanzhao Kingdom.
There are few better places to get off the beaten track than in Dali, where you can escape the tourist crowds at the remote Muslim village of Donglianhua (East Lotus), with its large mosque and wonderful traditional architecture. The village was an important point on the caravan trading route, which eventually led into neighbouring Myanmar. Further south is Weishan, the birthplace of the ancient Nanzhao Kingdom and a portal back to the China of days gone by.