Lijiang has some superb hotels full of charm in old restored Naxi residences.
125 miles to the north of Dali, 7,870 feet high, Lijiang is inhabited by Tibetans: Yi, Pumi, Naxi, Lisu... In front of their old wooden houses, the Naxi women still wear their seven star capes daily, and preserve a few matriarchal customs. Canals cross the very flowery little town that has a big daily market. You should discover the Black Dragon Pond Park and the small museum founded by an erudite Naxi, Xuan Ke, who receives his visitors in English. Every evening there are concerts of Naxi music. Goat's cheese, tea with butter and barley-sorghum alcohol are among the local specialities. In the surrounding areas, see the very pretty and restful village of Longquan, 1 mile from Baisha. The more adventurous could devote an additional 7h by bus to go up to Zhongdian, on the border with Tibet. This point of passage was previously frequented by caravans transporting boxes of tea to Tibet. There are several lamaseries of the Hat Sect in the region.