Xianggelila (Shangri-la) Photo Gallery and Information Page

Tours Featuring Xianggelila:
Yunnan Highlands Local Culture 11-Day Tour (CIT004): Kunming – Shilin (Stone Forest) – Jiuxiang Caverns – Dali –
Lijiang – Tiger Leaping Gorge –
Xianggelila (Shangri-la)

Map of China showing the location of Xianggelila

The name Xianggelila, the Mandarin transliteration of the fictional “Shangri-la,” refers to a county in the mountains of northwestern Yunnan Province whose traditional Mandarin name was Zhongdian. As a name that conjures images of a remote, unspoiled paradise, “Xianggelila” is quite appropriate, since the area boasts majestic mountains, pristine lakes and forests, and green fields filled with flowers and populated with yaks and horses. Xianggelila is also famous for its ethnic minority culture, and attractions like Zhongdian Old Town and Songzanlin Monastery, a stunning Tibetan temple complex, are also popular among tourists.

BASIC FACTS:
Chinese Name: 香格里拉 (pinyin: Xiānggélǐlā)
Population (2010): 130,000 (county population)
Province: Yunnan
Weather: dry, cold winters (usually well below freezing at night); mild summers

Xianggelila Photos

The photos below show some of the sights and attractions that you will see on our tours that include Xianggelila. Please refer to individual itineraries for specific information about the attractions featured on each tour.

Click on any photo below to open a full-sized version in a separate window.

Xianggelila: a land that sometimes does
seem too beautiful to be real

(photo by Liu Shu)
Remote hamlets
(photo by “The Tenth Dragon“)
Traditional rural life
(photo by “The Tenth Dragon“)
Horses, cows, and yaks
roam the land

(photo by Edwin Lee)
Prayer flags: symbols of
the local Tibetan culture

(photo by Poppy Wu)
Pray you never
have to leave

(photo by Poppy Wu)
A closeup of the prayer
wheel on the left

(photo by Poppy Wu)
Songzanlin Monastery and
its environs

(photo by CIT)
The entrance to Songzanlin
(photo by CIT)
A ceiling mural
(photo by CIT)
A demonic figure on the wall
(photo by CIT)
Monastery buildings
(photo by CIT)
Simple buildings give way to
grand temples as you climb

(photo by CIT)
This place does seem close to
the pure blue heavens

(photo by CIT)
Even clouds here seem like
celestial sculptures

(photo by Edwin Lee)
Traditional
architecture

(photo by Tracy Liu*)
Firewood for
the monastery

(photo by CIT)
Rooflines fit like puzzle
pieces with the sky

(photo by CIT’s Tracy Liu*)
Birds of prey:
a common sight

(photo by Edwin Lee)
Climb first to
the left temple

(photo by CIT)
Colorful decor in the
courtyard below the left temple

(photo by CIT)
Imposing statues and lavish works
of art are secreted within

(photo by CIT)
Smoke and
sunlight

(photo by CIT)
A possibly taboo shot
of the interior

(photo by Chen Ying)
Monks gaze
downward

(photo by Chen Ying)
Sun and shadows
in the courtyard

(photo by CIT)
The view from the top of the stairs:
on top of the top of the world

(photo by CIT)
Pointing at the
crescent moon

(photo by CIT)
The right-hand temple
(photo by CIT)
A sight at once thrilling,
sobering, and welcoming

(photo by CIT)
A shy young monk takes a
tentative look out the window

(photo by CIT’s Tracy Liu*)
Spinning a prayer wheel:
No whammies…Stop!

(photo by CIT)
Xianggelila’s Pudacuo National Park
(photo by Zhengmao Hu)
Shudu and Bita Lakes
(photo by Zhengmao Hu)
Fir trees
(photo by Zhengmao Hu)
Lovely shades of green,
yellow, and brown

(photo by Zhengmao Hu)
A lonely tree
(photo by Zhengmao Hu)
A Tibetan cowboy? Giddyup
(photo by Zhengmao Hu)
Low-resolution cows graze
pixellatedly in the distance

(photo by Zhengmao Hu)
Wildflowers at Pudacuo
(photo by Zhengmao Hu)
Another wildflower
(photo by Zhengmao Hu)
A stream crosses
the valley

(photo by Zhengmao Hu)
Explore local culture at the
Xiagei Tibetan Culture Village

(photo by Bon-yu Chu*)
Tibetan “mani dui”:
sacred piles of stones

(photo by Bon-yu Chu*)
Stroll contentedly through the
streets of Zhongdian Old Town

(photo by CIT)
Coffee and Internet service: the beauty
of Heaven, the comforts of home

(photo by Poppy Wu)
Dancing in the town square
(photo by Poppy Wu)
While you’re in Heaven,
don’t forget to buy a souvenir

(photo by CIT)
Prayer flags
cross the street

(photo by Tom Thai)
The best ‘tatoes
you’ll ever have

(photo by CIT)
Tibetan-style hot pot
(photo by CIT)

* Unlicensed photos are used by permission of the photographer.

Tours Featuring Xianggelila:
CIT004 icon - 75 x 75
Yunnan Highlands Local Culture 11-Day Tour (CIT004)
Kunming – Shilin (Stone Forest) – Jiuxiang Caverns – Dali –
Lijiang – Tiger Leaping Gorge – Xianggelila (Shangri-la)
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