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Dali, the Three Pagodas & Erhai Lake

Explore what Dali and its surrounding area has to offer.

First head to Erhai Lake where you board your boat and spend a couple of hours cruising on the beautiful freshwater lake. This lake is one of the seven largest lakes in China and is located at 2,000 m above sea level. It is filled by 18 streams from the Cangshan mountain range behind Dali that gets a good covering of snow every winter. There are several scenic spots around the lake including several islands on the lake itself.

After disembarking you will head back round the lake to proceed to Dali's most famous sight — the 'Three Pagodas'. These are unique due to the fact that they have withstood earthquakes, erosion, rain and wars to stand today as a sign of Dali's ancient history. The main and central pagoda is 16 stories high and was built during the Tang Dynasty (400 AD). The two smaller pagodas were added in the Northern Song Dynasty 400 years later. The rest of the park is now very modern and has only recently been converted into a park.

In 1997 the local government built the Bell Tower to house a 16-ton bell. It was built to commemorate the handing back of Hong Kong to China. Behind this is yet another building housing four Buddhas built to commemorate Macau. If you head off to one side of the park you find a small man-made lake which offers great reflections of the pagodas.

Leaving the park you can head off to Dali's old town. Spend time wandering the streets which are now completely enclosed by a 'modern-ancient' wall and compare the old with the new.

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