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Kunming Travel Guide and Tips

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Kunming, the capital city of Yunnan, is situated in the center of the province. Kunming is surrounded by mountains on three sides, with one side opening onto the Dianchi Lake. Kunming is renowned as "the City of Eternal Spring", it experiences sunny, dry summers and does not have severe winters. Annual temperatures average 15° C, peaking at averages of 19.7° C during the summer and 7.5° C in the winter. with an elevation of 1891 meters, the area's strong sunlight can come as a surprise, so remember to pack sunscreen. Despite the pleasant weather, you should also pack a sweater or jacket; nights can cool down significantly, especially in the summer.

As a renowned 2400-year-old city in southwest China, Kunming has a lot to offer: the Golden Temple and the Bamboo Monastery are essential stops on any traveler's itinerary. The city also boasts numerous natural attractions such as the bewitching Stone Forest, Jiuxiang Scenic Zone, Dianchi Lake, and the Grand View Park. The city is also an ethnic hotpot, some 26 ethnic minorities such as Zhuang, Yi, Hui, Miao, Bai, Dai, Hani and more inhabit the region, each with its own exotic festivals and traditions.

Why Visit this City:

Spring City – The weather in Kunming is always like spring, and the city is always covered with fresh flowers and green trees. Walking on the street and brushing pass with the carefree locals, you will be affected by this city’s freshness and leisure.

Stunning Natural Scenery – The natural scenery of Kunming is gorgeous, like the magnificent Dian Lake, tranquil Western Hill, magical Stone Forest, and colorful Dongchuan Red Land, etc.

Colorful Ethnic Culture – Kunming is multi-ethnic city, and there are 26 ethnic minorities in Kunming, including Yi, Hui, Bai, Miao, Hani, Zhuang, Dai, etc. Delicious ethnic food, colorful costumes, unique architecture and special ethnic culture are all fascinating.

The Must-See Attractions

The beautiful natural scenery, glorious historical heritages, and colorful folk customs made Kunming one of the first excellent tourist destination cities in China. Kunming has become a comprehensive tourist destination with tourism, holiday-spending, sightseeing, and entertainment combined as one.

Kunming Stone Forest

The Stone Forest World Geopark: It is a large comprehensive tourist zone with natural scenery, folk customs, and scientific research combined; and it's the spikiest karst landscape in the world.

TDongchuan Red Land: It is the most typical and characteristic red land in Yunnan Plateau. Praised as "God's palette", it is an ideal place for photography.

TGreen Lake Park (Cuihu Park): Dotted with verdant bamboo forests and willows, it is a green gem embedded in Kunming.

TWestern Hills (Xishan) Forest Park: It has enjoyed great fame for its beautiful and unique natural scenery since ancient times and is renowned as "the most beautiful place in Yunnan".

TYuantong Temple: It is the oldest Buddhist temple in Kunming and it houses the 3.5-meter (11.5 feet) tall statue of Sakyamuni.


Best Times to Visit Kunming

Kunming is suitable for travel throughout the year. The annual average temperature of Kunming is 15°C (59°F); the hottest and coldest temperatures are 32°C (89°F) in summer and 6°C (43°F) in winter respectively.

It's rather rainy in April, May, October, and November due to the influence of a monsoon wind. You're highly recommended to take a coat with you owing to the large temperature difference between the daytime and the nighttime.

Many ethnic festivals, such as the Flower Appreciating Festival (on March 3rd) and the Water Splashing Festival (from April 13th to April 15th), are held from March to April; what's more, you also have a chance to appreciate the flowers in full bloom.

Transportation in Kunming

Transportation in Kunming

Getting to Kunming

By flight: Kunming Changshui International Airport is the gateway airport facing to Southeast Asia, South Asia and connecting Europe and Asia. There are over 100 airlines to major cities in China and foreign cities, like Singapore, Paris, Seoul, Osaka, Bangkok, etc.

By train: Kunming Railway Station has trains to Dali, Lijiang and Stone Forest every days, and it also has trains to Major cities in China, like Beijing, Xian, Shanghai, Chengdu, Guangzhou, Guilin, Hainan, Nanjing, Shenzhen, etc.

Getting Around

To get around in Kunming, travelers can take public bus, taxi, subway and BRT (Bus Rapid Transit) to transfer. If travelers want to visit Dongchuan Red Land or Stone Forest, it’s suggested to charter a private car for this is more convenient.

If you book Kunming tour with China Discovery, we will provide private car with private driver and tour guide for you.

Know Before Visiting

1. Situated on a high plateau, Kunming is exposed to strong ultraviolet radiation, so visitors are advised to bring along sun cream with a high SPF (Sun Protection Factor).

2. The weather is changeable, with very big difference of temperature between day and night. So adequate outer clothing is a must for evening and night use, and this is even more important during the fall.

3. Kunming is blessed with cultural diversity, thanks to its large and thriving population of ethnic minorities. Since each ethnic group may have certain unique customs and traditions, you are urged to show restraint in general when visiting ethnic villages.

The Most Popular Kunming Tours

Do you want to tour Kunming with a local expert? Our professional guide will lead you to explore the less visited and more remote areas of the Stone Forest, and tell you the best places to take photographs in Dongchuan Red Land.

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