Erhai Lake

Erhai Lake, located in the east of Cangshan Mountain of Yunnan Dali, is named after the shape of an ear.

Praised as the “Pearl of Plateau”, about 250 square kilometers, Erhai Lake is the second-largest highland lake of Yunnan and one of the seven biggest freshwater lakes in China.

Cycling along the Erhai Ecological Corridor or taking a boat tour is a fantastic way to discover the majestic scenery of Erhai Lake.

What to do in Erhai Lake and its surroundings?

There are three famous islands in Erhai Lake: Jinsuo Island, Yuji Island, and Chiwen Island.

Jinsuo Island, which means golden shuttle, is like a weaving shuttle lying in Erhai Lake and 6 kilometers away from the ancient city of Dali in the west and used to be a summer resort for the Nanzhao royal family.

Yuji Island, located in the west of Erhai Lake, is named after the Yuji Temple. Here, the scenery integrates the essence of Cangshan and Erhai Lake, and architecture is rich in the cultural characteristics of the Bai fishing man. The most beautiful Erhai town, Shuanglang, is close to Yuji Island. Enjoying a few hours or a peaceful night here, relaxing, and enjoying the slow-paced local life is the main reason why many young people like this island and Shuanglang town.

Chiwen Island is not as well-known as the first two islands and is famous for the clear waters all year round. Most travelers come here more to stay in Wase Village and visit Little Putuo Island.

Located on the east shore of Erhai Lake, Wase Village retains lots of Bai-style ancient buildings and gate towers built in the late Qing Dynasty and early Republic of China era. There are many hotels with beautiful seascapes facing Cangshan and Erhai Lake. If you prefer a quiet vibe and a lake view room, staying in Wase Town is an ideal choice for the prices of accommodation and meals are relatively affordable.

Little Putuo Island is the smallest island by the east shore of Erhai Lake. Legend has it that this island is a seal sent by Guanyin (Goddess of mercy) to control the wind and waves and protect the fisherman. Therefore, they built Guanyin Pavilion on the island to thank Guanyin.

The best time to enjoy the amazing scenery of Little Putuo Island is in the morning, showing you a misty and mysterious island. Every winter, it is one of the best places to watch black-headed gulls from Siberia fly in to spend the winter.

After enjoying the splendid natural scenery of Erhai Lake, be sure to visit the ancient town of Xizhou and Zhoucheng around Erhai Lake, which are very characteristic of Bai culture.

Dali Erhai lake map

Dali Erhai Lake Map

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