Lijiang is an old city
with gorgeous surroundings resting in northwest Yunnan, located on
a plateau at an elevation of 8,530 feet. Tectonic movement, which
took place over 65 million years ago, created the Himalayas and gave
rise to the Qinghai-Tibet Plateau. In the southeastern part of this
plateau and the northwestern part of the Yunnan-Guizhou Plateau, meandering
mountain ranges tower into the sky and swift rivers roar in deep gorges,
presenting magnificent landforms over an area covering more than 77
thousand square miles. This area embodies the beauty of Lijiang Prefecture.
The Yulong Mountains are located where the Qinghai-Tibet and Yunnan-Guizhou plateaus interlock, and together they form the peak of the Yunling Mountains, the southern-most section of the Himalayan Mountain range. Harboring a string of marine glaciers, the Yunlong mountain range, extends unbroken for 21 miles, forming a "Jade Dragon" dancing in clouds. Its silvery scales shining bright, the dragon's head faces towards to the north, while its body rolls south. The southernmost peak Shanzidou is 18 thousand feet in altitude and is also known as the "jade pillar that props up the sky."
The Wufeng Tower (Five Phoenix Tower)
The tower was built in the 29th year of the Wanli reign during the Ming Dynasty (1601). It has three stories and the upturned eaves of each story have eight angles. From any place within the tower, you can see the colorful images of five flying phoenixes.
The Baima Longtan Triple Wells
There are many artesian wells grouped in threes located in the ancient city of Lijiang. The local people utilize these wells for daily affairs according to the direction of the water flow. The one furthest upstream is used for drinking water; the middle one is used for washing vegetables, and the one farthest downstream is designated for washing clothes.