Shuanglang, a Bai Minority town,
With poetic scenery and tranquil guesthouses, the small fishing village of Shuanglang has become a favourite escape from urban living for those know.
Many of you may know of the tourist-thronging Dali & Lijiang in Southwest China’s Yunnan Province. But few of you may have heard of Shuanglang Village. This is an idyllic place & China’s hidden little treasure which few have come to know.
For over a thousand years, the local Bai Minority people here have made their living fishing in the lake. But the past 10 years have brought in a change to life. The small tranquil village is now popular with visitors looking to unwind and enjoy a slower tempo.
Old alleys and traditional architecture made for pleasant wanders. And it’s easy to take a boat out on the lake or just kick back and do very little.
Surrounded by mountains on three sides, Shuanglang village hugs the scenic Erhai lake. The weather here always seems perfect, making it a great retreat anytime of the year. It is also home to some of the most romantic boutique guesthouses in China.
Baxun, Shuanglang village chief & owner of the first such guesthouses, said,”A guesthouse is not a hotel. It’s much more personal. The decoration varies in different guesthouses. Each and every one of them represents the owner’s unique style.” There are more than 120 guesthouses now, offering much choice for a comfortable stay. Most face the lake and have decks providing breath-taking views.
A tourist said,” I like staying here. It feels like home.” And many really do make this their other home. In fact, many of the guesthouses are opened by the once “outsiders”.
Xiaoyun and her husband, “We wanted to find somewhere peaceful to live,” came to Shuanglang in 2009 from Beijing, and fell in love with the quiet village. The couple later quit their jobs to set up their own guesthouse here. “We had traveled to many places around the country. The air, clouds, people . . . we just love everything here.”
As elsewhere in China, change is coming to Shuanglang. Several new guesthouses have been built in anticipation of future visitors. With the influx of bar, restaurants & people, the mood of the village will no doubt change. Hopefully it will be a few years before this hidden gem becomes a mini-Lijiang.
For the present, tranquillity & peace exist. Before long these may not persist!