National Minorities Park
Located along the bank of the Liusha River, close to Yunnan Province’s Jinghong City lies the Xishuangbanna National Culture Park or more informally known as the National Minorities Park. The park was created in 1987 and covers 667,000 sq. m. The park boasts of a tropical vibe with its lovely tropical garden as well as a historical and cultural site with a showcase of traditional cultural activities and folk ways.
The mix of traditional culture and exotic flora makes the National Minorities Park an incredibly beautiful and educational venue to visit for both kids and adults who are interested about nature and Chinese culture.
The National Minorities Park has been divided between the Northern and Southern sections. The Northern section is an ideal location for those who want to learn more about the country’s ethnic minorities such as the Yao, Hani, Dai, Lahu, Blang and Jinuo. The northern section is filled with numerous traditional houses depicting the traditional communities and living conditions within various ethnic communities in China. If you wish to learn about the culture, heritage, history and customs of these ethnic groups, you will definitely enjoy visiting the Northern section.
Part of the festivities and activities around the northern part of the National Minorities Park would be the Dai wedding rituals, water splashing, bamboo fireworks, dragon boat races, as well as rafting. Apart from these activities, you can also be entertained in one of the 4 outdoor dance halls in which you can enjoy traditional dances such as the Tom Tom Dance of the Jinuo, the Peacock dance of the Dai ethnic group and even the 400-member group dance from the Lahu tribe. If you wish to enjoy these dances and other similar cultural festivities, you should visit the National Minorities Park during Mondays, Wednesdays and Saturdays.
The Southern section of the National Minorities Park is a lush tropical tourist destination. There are three major zones that you can explore in the southern park. First is the area for tropical plant species such as arecas, palms and others. There is also a zone for tropical fruits where you can find a coffee farm, orchard and areas where mangoes, coconuts, jackfruits, grapefruits and lychees are grown. If you want to enjoy these tropical fruits, visit the area when the fruits are in season since you can pick the fruits from the trees and enjoy delicious snacks while traveling across the National Minorities Park. The northern part of the orchard is a dedicated zoo where you can explore a variety of bird species and some elephants. If you want to take a swim and enjoy the water, the Southern Section also boasts of a Swimming and sunbathing zone. If you want a quick tropical tour across the Yunnan province, you will definitely enjoy the National Minorities Park.
The National Minorities Park is a 4 kilometer drive from the nearest airport. If you want, you can ride No.1 Bus or you could also opt for a rickshaw. If you are in Jinghong City, you can simply walk to the destination and explore the city before going to this beautiful cultural and tropical paradise. If you are traveling with kids or you simply want a quick getaway with a nice cultural experience, this cultural park is a nice introductory option for any traveler. It offers a pretty good collection of various ethnic icons and offers an entertaining way to explore the prominent minority groups around China.