Dian Lake, Dianchi Lake or Kunming Lake is a large inter-land lake located on the Yunnan-Guizhou Plateau close to Kunming, Yunnan, China. Its nickname is "Sparkling Pearl Embedded in a Highland," and it was the model for the Kunming Lake in the Summer Palace in Beijing.
It is a freshwater fault lake at 1,886.5 m (6,189 ft) above sea level. The lake covers 298 km2 (115 sq mi). It is 39 km (24 mi) long from north to south, and the average depth is 4.4 m (14 ft). It is the eighth largest lake in China and the largest in Yunnan Province.
Features of Dianchi Lake
Dianchi Lake, also known as Kunming Lake, lies at the foot of the Western Hills in Kunming city. With a stunning landscape and an elevation of 1,885 meters (6,185 feet), it is praised as the "Pearl of the Plateau".
Dianchi Lake is the sixth largest freshwater lake in China and has a shoreline of more than 160 kilometers (100 miles). It is also a natural cistern, being of great benefit not only to the water supply, flood control, shipping and fishery, but also to the climate conditioning.
The west side of Dianchi Lake is covered by the mountain forest, while the east side is dotted with the fisheries and agribusinesses. There are few natural sights more beautiful or inspiring than a mountain and a mountain-like side by side under the sun. There is just something about the deep green water reflecting the forests and stone peaks that captures the imagination and man's sense of adventure.
Traditional fishermen still sail with their boats on the lake, carrying about their family business today in much the same fashion as their ancestor's did hundreds of years before. There probably isn't a better way to truly enjoy the surroundings than to take a ride on a boat for a trip around the lake. The blue sky, cool water, invigorating fresh air, and soaring birds will all contribute to building a lasting memory and love for Yunnan province.
Dianchi Lake is the most beautiful at dawn and sunset. The refraction of the ethereal rays glitter on the water surface just like thousands of silver fish swimming and playing. This ocean-like lake is indeed the best place to go for those people who wish to get away from the bustling city and be close to nature.
Reviews of Dianci Lake
During each November to April the following year, Kunming city will be thronged with ten thousands of blacked-headed gulls. They will fly across the vast and deserted area of chilly Siberia and Russia all the way to Yunnan, the lost Shangri-la and a paradise on earth.
With warm weather and abundant food, they live very happily and healthy here during the 180 days. You can feed them in Cuihu Lake( Green Lake) during this period, and feel the merry atmosphere of local people. Cuihu Lake is the "Vienna' for the local people, a base camp for local singers and musicians. During morning or dawn, middle-aged or senior-age group will gather here habitually, singing and dancing every day at this park and humming the original flavor Yunnan folk music. If you want to see the Tibetan dance or Dai Minority's dance, you can visit Jinyudao( Golden Fish Island).
How to get Dianchi Lake
From Kunming train station to Dianchi Lake: Take Bus 24 or 44 and get off at Haigeng Park.
Advised tour hour: two hours
Best Travel Season: With annual temperature of 15 degree, Kunming well lives up to its name as the "Spring City", "Flower City" and "Green City". You can visit it all year around and appreciate blossoms in spring, enjoy breeze and lush vegetation during summer as well as feed the black-headed gulls during autumn and winter.
Tour Route Advised: you can visit the West Hill first, and then take the cable car at Longmen. The fee is 30RMB. Or you can leave from Daguan Park by boat. Cycle around this lake is good idea.
Special tips: Though with an altitude of only 1800m, sunshine here is still a threat to your delicate skin. Sunscreen (30+ to 50+) and cap are necessary items; Be aware not to get into the illegal taxi; Rain often visit Kunming unexpectedly, but it goes quickly also. You can bring an umbrella.