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Dali Transportation

Dali lies at the junction of the Yunnan-Burma Highway (320 National Highway) and the Yunnan-Tibet Highway (214 National Highway), which connects to other regions of western Yunnan Province. In addition, the Dali-Kunming Freeway has been open. Increasingly modern transportation system makes it easier than ever for people living ere to communicate with the outside world.

Getting There

By Air

Airport Code: DLU
Location: About 13 kilometers (8 miles) away from the city center, Dali (Huangcaoba) Airport, is located on the southeast bank of Erhai Lake.

Brief Intro: Established in 1995, the airport covers an area of 416 acres including a 4200 square meters (1 acre) terminal building and a 19,550 square meters (4.8 acres) apron, which can handle planes such as the Boeing 737. The apron has 4 parking positions and the runway is 2600 meters (1.6 miles) long. This is the first high altitude airport in China with a complex geographic situation.

At present, flights using this airport connect the city with many destinations such as Beijing, Shanghai, Kunming, Xishuangbanna, Tianjin, Chengdu, Chongqing, Guiyang and Guangzhou. Many flights, such as to Guangzhou and Kunming, are operated daily.

Airport Transportation
Bus No.7 makes a round-trip between Xiaguan and the airport. A ticket costs CNY1. In addition, airport shuttles go to downtown areas. Taxis are also available to the airport for about CNY 80. Besides the ticket booking office of the CAAC on Yunling Street, most hotels and travel agencies in Jianshe Road offer ticket booking services. We recommend leaving for the airport from downtown two hours ahead of departure time. Airport check-in services will close 30 minutes before a flight departs.

By Train

Green ordinary trains

Getting to Dali by train is also convenient. Located in Yunling Street, the Railway Station can be reached by city buses No.6, 7, 8, 10, and 11. Trains run only to and from Kunming. There are five trains daily and running time is about seven to nine hours. The earliest train leaves from Kunming at about 08:00 and the other four all run at night from 21:00 to 23:00. The tickets are only sold in the reception center of the No.35108 Army building on Jianshe Road from 09:30 to 17:30. Charges are CNY 30 for hard seats and CNY 49 for soft seats, and respectively CNY 52 and CNY 81 for trains with air conditioning.

By Long-distance Bus

Located at No.21, Jianshe Road, Xiaguan, the Dali Bus Station is the largest bus station in the city. It operates bus lines to Kunming and Lijiang, as well as cities in other provinces, such as Panzhihua in Sichuan and Putian in Fujian. Most comfortable express buses depart from this station. Bus No.2 stops in this station.

A long-distance bus in Dali Bus Station
Comfortable tourism coach
Dali Bus Station
Dali Coach Station
In addition, there are several other bus stations. The Passenger Transport Service Station is located at No.78, Jianshe Road. Visitors can choose either company depending on their schedule. Xiaguan North Bus Station is located on North Taian Road and operates a line to Tengchong, Lijiang, Zhongdian and Shangri-La. The last bus to Lijiang leaves at 18:00 and it takes about three hours on the way. The price is about CNY38 and it runs every 30 minutes. The Dayun Passenger Bus Station on Jianshe Road next to the Dayun Hotel operates bus lines to suburban counties and also lines to Kunming and Lijiang.

Getting Around

By City-bus

There are dozens of public buses running to every corner of the city. Most of them are self-serviced that require exact change. Visitors can take them to some of the scenic spots. For example, visitors can take the No. 6 to Erhai Park or the No. 8 to the Ancient City. The ticket price from Xiaguan to the Ancient City is CNY 1.5. In addition, autobuses can shuttle visitors between various spots. For instance, it costs about CNY4 from Butterfly Spring to the Ancient City by autobus. Visitors can also apppreciate the beautiful scenery of Cangshan Mountain by cable car or on horseback.

Generally speaking, getting to the scenic spots by city-buses is very convenient and enjoyable.

By Water

ferry cruise
Cruise to the lake
Erhai Lake has a long shipping history. In 1999, the Xiaguan Dock of Dali Port was expanded and renovated into a grand and well appointed dock with 13 berths. Nowadays, busy shipping around Erhai Lake is injecting new energy into the shipping industry of this area.

Cruise ships are indispensable to an agreeable journey on the Erhai Lake. Definitely, the navigable waterways of Dali mostly are concentrated around Erhai Lake. One can visit Erhai Lake by boat beginning at around 09:00 every morning. Visitors can take Bus No.6 from Xiaguan and Bus No.2 from the Ancient City. The ticket price should be about CNY 60-100. It's a good idea to make your reservation one day ahead of time.

Taxi

For people who want to get to their destination as quickly as possible, taxis are wise choice. Generally, the starting fare is CNY5, and CNY1.4 will be charged for each kilometer, while for Santana brand taxis, the starting price is CNY6. An additional CNY1.6 is added per kilometer.

By Bicycle

Renting a bicycle is the perfect solution for those who want to visit  the Ancient City of Dali to get a full view of its beauty and unique charm. Cycling along the paths paved with stone slabs is a very fashionable way to appreciate the Ancient City. Bicycles can be rented quite easily. For example, the Hongshancha Hotel on Huguo Road offers bicycles for hire. Usually, the rental is about CNY 10-20 per day, and a deposit is paid in advance.