Kunming Travel Guide
Kunming © Emitchan
Kunming is known as the 'city of eternal spring' due to its pleasant climate and attractive setting among limestone hills and large lakes. It is the capital of the Yunnan province in southern China. The city of Kunming is home to more than six million people and encompasses an ancient city (which used to be fortified), a modern commercial district, a university campus, and residential areas. It is one of China's major tourism cities and has lots to offer visitors. The city is also an important hub for transportation and trade, as it is linked to Vietnam by rail and to Laos and Burma by road.
Kunming has been rapidly modernised in the last few decades, in places to the detriment of traditional sights and interesting cultural locations. Nonetheless, Kunming has many sights and cultural attractions worth visiting, including temples, museums, parks and gardens, and the fascinating Stone Forest. Jiuxiang Scenic Area also has a number of caves and waterfalls that are popular attractions. All in all the city and wider region offer a good cross-section of both modern and ancient China for travellers and the pretty southern scenery is an added bonus.
By Chinese standards Kunming is quite a laid-back city, despite its importance as a trade and transportation hub, and it is known to offer high living standards. It is a popular resort city in its own right but its status as a provincial capital and crossroads between countries also makes it very useful to tourists exploring the region.