Flying to Lijiang and Lugu Lake to seek for the unique scenery! 

Written by Dec 5, 2011 21:49
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I say people who visit Liang are divided into two kinds. The first is looking for noise, liberation and romance while the second kind is seeking inner-peace and loneliness. I belong to the second kind.

Since I made up my mind to visit Lijiang, I had been looking for cheap flight and hostels for a while. Eventually, I started my journey.

On the first day
Flew from Hangzhou to Lijiang via Chongqing and stayed at 0328 hostel in Shuhe Ancient Town

On the second day
Took the tour bus to Lugu Lake and stayed on the ‘Lige Peninsula’

On the third day
Wandering by the lake and enjoying the sun bath

On the fourth day
Had a walking tour to the Nisai Village

On the fifth day
Went back to Shuhe Ancient Town and stayed there

On the sixth day
Strolling in the town

On the seventh day
Flew back t Hangzhou via Chongqing

On the first day

My flight took off at 07:45 from Hangzhou. The ticket was cheap but it stopped at Chongqing Airport for a while. I arrived at the Lijiang Sanyi Airport at 14:40. Thank goodness! It was sunny so that I had a chance to see the sunset.

The hostel I reserved offered airport pick-up service. When I got out of the airport, I saw a man with a mini-bus waiting there. I was a bit disappointed because I didn’t expect the hostel just sent a mini-bus to pick me up.

The road from the airport to the downtown area was under construction. It was dirty and bumpy. I was lucky that I didn’t have carsickness. Otherwise, I would have thrown up inside the mini-bus. About one hour later, the driver took me safely back to the hostel.

I found this hostel unexpectedly on the internet. It was different from other hostels. I didn’t find any extravagant introduction or review about the hostel. The owners just had a blog to record their daily lives by words and photos. I couldn’t feel any sense of commercialization. Good! That’s what I had been looking for.
Facilities in the courtyard
our room

The entrance of the hostel was very simple. My friend and I got lost several times because we couldn’t find the entrance.
The entrance to our hostel

It was so cozy that I took a nap on the chair in the yard. Maybe, I was tired because of the one-hour bumpy and dirty road trip from the airport to the hostel. Lucky me, I didn’t miss the sunset when I woke up.
Shuhe Ancient in the sunset

There was also a bar street in the Shuhe Ancient Town. I didn’t like this street because it had been commercialized.
Bar Street

After taking some photos of the sunset, I felt a bit hungry. So we entered a restaurant and ordered Poached Sliced Beef in Hot Chili (Fei Shui Niu Rou) and Roast Fish (Kao Yu). The fish was different because it lived in the snow mountain. Both dishes tasted very well. But the prices was high. We paid 130 yuan for two dishes.
Beef in Hot Chili

Roast fish

The night fell at around 21:00. It was a bit late so we decided to walk back to our hostel.
The buildings decorated with lights in the evening

On the second day

We planned to stay at the town this day and then went to the Lugu Lake tomorrow. But the hostel we planned to book in the lake was too popular. We were told that the vacant room was only available for today and tomorrow. Thus, we had to get there today.

There are three ways from Lijiang to the Lugu Lake:
1. take bus at Lijiang Bus Station. You will get off at Daluoshui Village
2. take bus from Lijiang to Ningliang and then transfer to Lugu Lake by mini-bus.
3. take tour bus from Lijiang Ancient Town to Lige Village by the Lugu Lake. The bus departs at 08:00 every day.

Our destination was the Lige Village. So we decided to take the tour bus. The hostel helped us reserve the ticket and told us that we needn’t go to the Lijiang Ancient Town to take the bus because they would pick us up at the Shuhe Ancient Town. Thanks to the hostel, we needn’t waste time and money to get to the Lijiang Ancient Town.

We were told to wait at the gate of the Shuhe Ancient Town at 07:30. But we didn’t see the bus when we got there on time. Suddenly, someone called me and said that the bus wouldn’t come here to pick us up and we had to take taxi to the Lijiang Ancient Town. We didn’t have a choice. So we got there by taxi.

When we got on the bus, we just found two vacant seats in the back row. We felt disappointed because we had to sat on the seats for 8 hours.

Tip: never sit in the back row on the tour bus because it is too bumpy. The ticket is 140 yuan for a round trip and 80 yuan for a single trip.

I knew that we could hitch a car back to Shuhe Ancient Town from the Lugu Lake. It just cost about 50-60 yuan. But I was not sure when we could hitch the car. So we bought the round way ticket.

Tip: You have to reserve the ticket before 12:00 one day in advance and then buy the ticket when you get on the bus. If you bought the round-way ticket, you will get a card. Please keep it in a safe place because you have to show it when you get on the bus in the Lugu Lake.

Our tour bus left the Lijiang Ancient Town to the Lugu Lake at 08:00. My friend and I felt excited. Lugu Lake, we would come soon!

The bus was running for about one hour but suddenly stopped. Some passengers got off the bus and went to the toilet. I also went to the bathroom. It wasn’t free and you should pay 1 yuan before entering the toilet.

Here I remind all of you bring some changes in case you use the bathroom.

A few minutes later, the driver stopped again. I just thought we came to another toilet. No! The driver wanted us to appreciate the winding road. We didn’t feel nervous or dangerous when we were on the bus. But I felt a bit nervous when I was looking at the road. If the driver made any mistake, we might have fallen off the road.
wandering road

Perhaps, the driver was too familiar with the roads. He drove very fast. He might know that some passengers were a bit nervous. Then he played some Tibetan songs and invited all passengers to sing together with him. I knew that he just wanted to distract the passengers’ attention.

Tip If you have a carsickness, please bring some medicine and avoid sitting in the last row.

We arrived at Ningliang county at noon. The driver took us to a farmer’s house to have lunch. The dishes were prepared before we arrived but tasted just so so. After lunch, we got on the bus and heading for the Lugu Lake.

Eventually, we arrived at the gate of the Lugu Lake. After paying the entrance fee, we got on the bus again. The driver said that we could arrive at around 16:00. Very good! I could enjoy the sunset by the lake.

Unfortunately, we were cheated by the driver. He took us to the riverside and asked if we wanted to take the boat. He said that we wouldn’t have a chance to take the boat if we arrived at the final destination. My friend and I just wanted to get to our hostel very soon. So we didn’t take the boat. However, there were five Shanghai tourists who would come back tomorrow. They wanted to take the boat. The driver asked if any of us was willing to have a boat tour. Finally, 12 people got on the boat. The rest of us just waited in the bus. They promised to get back in one hour. But we waited for more than 3 hours and they still didn’t come back.

A tourist quarreled with the driver and said we waited too long. But the driver didn’t want to leave unless 12 tourists got back. Well, they went back at last. According to what they said, they encountered a strong wind and the boatman couldn’t control the boat because he was too thin. What’s worse, the paddle was broken. He borrowed one from another boatman. But he never knew that his boat was leaking….
the pig trough boat

Anyway, they came back safely. We finally arrived the last stop. My friend and I ran into the hostel after getting off the bus. Entering the hostel, we forgot the unhappy experience immediately. It was too awesome! We threw our backpacks on the floor, made some coffee and then sat on the chair to appreciate the sunset by the Lugu Lake.

When the night fell, we remembered that we hadn’t had our supper yet. Then we went out and found a small restaurant to eat roast fish. It was disgusting because the fish wasn’t fresh! I didn’t want to mention the name of the restaurant. So we entered another restaurant. When we almost finished our supper, we finally realized that we ate roast sow meat. This was the worst supper I had ever had.

On the third day

As I said, the hostel we booked was built by the lake. The room we booked was decorated with glass walls. In order to see the sunrise, we drew all the curtains in the room before we went to bed.

Perhaps, we were too excited. My friend and I woke up very early in the morning and couldn’t fall into sleep again. So we got up and waited for the sunrise. At 06:00, we saw a bit red behind the mountain. Unfortunately, it was too cloudy and we failed to see the amazing sunrise. All we had was a photo of thick clouds.
The sun hidden hick clouds

Standing on the balcony and taking a deep breath, I felt very relaxed and happy. I turned down my head and discovered the blue lake and a naughty dog called “coffee”.
Blue water and a sitting dog

In the bathroom, you still can see the grand view of the Lugu Lake.

After getting ourselves ready, we went down stairs. Suddenly, I was hit by ‘Coffee’, that naughty dog. I almost fell down. Later, we realized that he just drew our attention and hoped that we could play with him.
the dog called 'cafe'
The rest area
The rest area 2

The rest area, where you can sit and appreciate the Lugu Lake. (photos above)

The hostel we chose was called Bi’an, located at the end of the Lige Peninsula It just has NINE rooms, four on the first floor and five on the second floor. The rooms’ names sound very good. On the first floor are Spring, Summer, Autumn and Winter. Each room costs 220 rmb per night. On the second floor are Sun, Moon, Star, Cloud and Liuru. Each has its balcony. The Sun, Moon and Cloud costs 260 rmb/night. The Star is a bit larger and has a bathroom where you can appreciate the Lugu Lake. So it is a little expensive, 320 yuan/night.

Liuru is the best and most popular room. It has bigger room and wide balcony, whose two sides are surrounded by the Lugu Lake. It costs 480 yuan per night.

Tip: You have to pre-pay for the room when you reserve it. And you have to reserve the room at least for two nights.

A corner of the Liuru’s balcony

A local on the boat

Coffee was a responsible dog. Every time the boat got close to the hostel, he began barking at the visitors to defend its territory. Sometimes, he jumped into the cold water to warn them. His behavior made some timid female visitors scream.
'Cafe' barking at the tourists

The public balcony

The balcony of the Liuru

My stomach was clenched with hunger. Time for lunch! But the restaurants were a bit far away from here. So we entered Qian Wang Xiao Zhu, another hostel.

The rooms on the first floor.

The dining room. You can appreciate the Lugu Lake while having meals.

We ordered Shui Zhu Yu (fish in hot pepper) and chatted with the boss. He said that he came from Chongqing. Great! We could enjoy authentic Sichuan style dish. It tasted very well.

My friend preferred to sitting on the balcony in a trance. So it was only me who was wandering around the Lugu Lake.

In the Lige Village, I found a small farm….
The horses on the farm

I didn’t remember how long I was wandering by the lake. Finally, I walked back to the Lige Peninsular. This was the path to my hostel. I decided to see the hostels on the path. Entering the first hostel, I found that it wasn’t good for appreciating the Lugu Lake. By the way, I didn’t remember its name. The second was called ‘Peninsular No.7’. The boss was a local and the chef was from Hanzhong, Shaanxi Province. He also cooked Sichuan style dishes.

Keeping on walking, I entered ‘Muyunxuan’. It had a nice name. The owner was from Taizhou. I didn’t like the decoration style.

The next hostel was Qian Wang Xiao Zhu where I had my lunch. The boss was kind and good at cooking food. I strongly recommended you should eat Shui Zhu Yu (Fish in Hot Pepper), Fan Qie Chao Dan (Scrambled eggs with tomatoes) and Mu’er Rou Pian( Fried black fungus with pork slices). I visited their best room. Standing in the room, I could see the Lugu Lake clearly. The price was cheaper. It cost 380 rmb per night.

In the late afternoon, we had a very romantic dinner. The electricity was cut off. So we had our dinner in the moonlight. It was awesome! But it wouldn’t be good if we slept in the dark for a night. Lucky me! The hostel had a generator. We needn’t wash our faces, hands in the dark.

On the forth day

Getting up very early in the morning, both of us packed our luggage because someone had reserved our rooms. After breakfast, we took a walk on the peninsular. Some local women asked us if we’d like having a boat tour. 10 rmb per person and the minimum charge was 20 rmb. It sounded nice.

We asked the boatwoman if we could visit the Nisai village by boat. “150 rmb and I am waiting for you for 20 minutes.”, she said. 20 minutes was too short. We gave up and went off the boat at the most busiest village. We planned to have our lunch at the Qian Wang Xiao Zhu again but the electricity was gone there. The boss recommended us to eat at Jing Yuan, a restaurant in the Lige Village.

My friend and I ordered beef and Ma Po To Fu. The beef was nice but tofu wasn’t as good as we expected. We still wanted to visited the Nisai Village. The boss of Jing Yuan suggested hiking. Good idea! We checked the map and found that it wasn’t too far from here to the Nisai Village. He said that 30 minutes was enough. But we actually spent around 1 hour.

The ‘stone hill’, located on the way to the Lige Peninsular.
Small stone hill

Passing through the village, we walked on a little path to climb the mountain.

Seeing the Lige Peninsular from the mountain…..

We finally arrived at the Nisai Village. Two pairs of LOVE TREES appeared in front of us.
Love Trees

The village was too quiet. The local’s houses were scattered by the lake or at the foot of the mountain. Some villagers opened the hostels but they seldom received the visitors because the hostels were located in remote areas. The poultries were raised in the wild. See, the geese stared at us, warning us not to get close to their land. The calf was eating grass casually. I tried to lure him to the LOVE TREE and took some photos for him. But he never looked at me and just walked away.
Geese keeping the strangers away


After spending a while at the Nisai Village, we decided to move back. But we felt very tired when we climbed on the road. So we took a mini-bus back to Lige Village. It cost us 20 yuan. The driver was nice. He allowed us to take some photos of the Lige Peninsular on the way. At last, we arrived at the Lige Village at 16:30.
Lige Pininsular

the pig trough boat

Dinner at Peninsular No.7 and dishes were just so so.

On the fifth day

Today we were going to get back to Shuhe Ancient Town. Last night, we contacted the driver and booked the tickets. Since we had an unpleasant experience of sitting in the back of the bus, we ‘bribed’ the driver and asked him to leave two seats behind him for us.

We got to the parking lot in the early morning and found the driver. He kept his promise. So we put our luggage on the two seats behind him and went to eat breakfast. At 08:30, we were leaving for the Shuhe Ancient Town. Goodbye, Lugu Lake!

The bumpy journey started again. Actually, the road from Lijiang to Lugu Lake wasn’t very safe. You might experience the landslides if you were unlucky. I was praying that we could get back to Shuhe Ancient Town safely. Suddenly, the driver stopped the bus and looked at the hill. We didn’t find out what was wrong. He told us that small rocks fell from the hill. After a few minutes, he thought it was safe to go so that he drove quickly.

We got back to Shuhe Ancient Town at 17:00. I felt exhausted and walked to the hostel and took a snap. In the evening, we went to the Xiao Zhen Ji Tang on the bar street to have supper. The dishes were ok. After supper, I went to bad very early.

On the sixth day

I was awake very early since I planned to see the town in the morning. After breakfast, we were sitting at the yard and discussing if we should go to the Baisha Town. We asked the boss and he said that 90 percent of the visitors who went there thought it was boring to go there. There were just a few damaged houses. Nothing else!

My friend and I didn’t want to spend the whole morning in the Dayan Town. Thus, we decided to see the damaged houses in the Baisha Town. We rented two bikes and planned to go there by bike.
Naxi people

Actually, the houses weren’t all damaged. They just kept their original shapes. We didn’t know if we had arrived at the Baisha Town and didn’t see any local. Suddenly, we were attracted to a ‘villa’ built in Naxi style. We were thinking of entering the house but afraid of disturbing the locals. Suddenly, the door was open. The people inside saw us and invited us to enter their house.
The rich one's house

What a beautiful yard! Flowers were everywhere. An old lady sat below the flowers and greeted us in their language. We couldn’t understand what she said but she looked very friendly, always smiling at us. We took some photos for her and let her see the photos in the camera. She was happy while seeing the photos.

We chatted with her grandson’s wife. She said that her husband loved flowers very much. The flower trees were all grown by him.
The old lady below the flowers
Flowers in the courtyard

We kept riding in the town after leaving the old lady’s house. A few minutes later, we arrived at the center of the Baisha town. Sadly, the town had been commercialized too. Cars, taxis, cafes, restaurants are everywhere. It was a bit noisy for us. We just watched the drummer performance and donated some money to them and then left the town.
Naxi people playing mahjong

local snack

chatting with each other

Getting our of the Baisha Town, we didn’t get back immediately. We kept riding for a while and saw a field of rape flowers. We stopped there and took some photos. OMG! It’s 15:00 already. We couldn’t ride too far because we had to ride back to Shuhe. I didn’t believe that we stayed so long at the Baisha Town. We planned to stay there for 1 hour but actually we spent several hours.

We rode back to 0328 hostel at 17:00. After a 30 minutes’ rest, we went out to have our last dinner in Lijiang. We learnt that Long Ji Ban Yu was very nice so we went there directly. Ban Yu was actually a kind of black fish. Usually, it was eaten in two ways: eating raw slices or scouring in hotpot. It cost 28 yuan/kilo. It’s the first time that I had eaten raw fish slices. It tasted good.

I hated noisy places so the bar street wasn’t my favorite. So we left the bar street and started looking for A’an Yogurt, another delicious snack in Shuhe. It was located on the Zhenxin Alley, Wuyi Street. The store was small but we found many visitors’ messages on the wall. We bought two bottles and the flavor was amazing.

It was a bit late. We left the town and went back to 0328.

On the seventh day

It’s the last day of our trip. In the morning, we didn’t go anywhere but stayed at the 0328 and played with the dogs. At 13:30, the bus arrived. It’s time to say ‘byebye’.

Although Lijiang had been commercialized, we still found the quietness and saw the amazing scenery.

Our flight arrived at Chongqing at 16:45 and left at 21:00. So we planned to eat some Chongqing dishes. We asked the steward if we could make it to eat in the downtown area. She told us the airport highway was under construction. We could be trapped on the way and couldn’t get back on time. Sigh! I called a friend and asked if there was a nice restaurant near the airport. She said there was a famous restaurant called ‘Dumb Rabbit’.

My friend and I decided to eat there. We ordered Diced Rabbit Meat in Hot Pepper and Fried Diced Rabbit Meat with Green Pepper. Both tasted good but I preferred Fried Diced Rabbit with Green Pepper.
Fried Diced Rabbit Meat with Green Pepper
Diced Rabbit Meat in Hot Pepper

After feeding our stomachs, we got back to the airport and finally arrived at Hangzhou Airport at 12:00.

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Comments (2)


Jan 12, 2013 08:09 Reply

Ms.SMITH said:


I want to stay on the Lige peninsula as well, but prefer to take the bus at Lijiang Bus Station to go to Luoshui Village because I've heard many stories about the "tour bus" drivers trying to make money from passengers. And I also heard the seats are larger and more comfortable on the regular bus. So, I was hoping somebody could provide me with a number to reserve tickets for the regular bus to Luoshui. I want to take the bus the morning following my arrival in Lijiang so want to reserve the tickets earlier, if possible.



Jul 18, 2012 03:09 Reply


Can someone be kind to teach me how i can book a room a lige penisular at lugu hu?
Many Thanks~!

KS Ong

Jul 18, 2012 05:02


You may call 0888-5881885 and see if they call help you reserve the house I lived.

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