Neighboring the captivating Dianchi Lake, the West Hill is just under 10 miles (15 kilometers) from downtown of Kunming, stretching 25 miles (40 kilometers) at an altitude of 8,200 feet (2,500 meters). The West Hill is endowed with breathtaking natural scenery indeed.
However, visitors who come to West Hill are often more captivated by its places of interest than by its enticing natural landscape. When visiting West Hill, the five must-sees, Huating Temple, Taihua Temple, Sanqingge Pavilions, Nie’er Tomb, as well as Longmen Grotto, should never be missed.
Built in the 14th century, Huating Temple is a well-known and revered site for Buddhists in Kunming and it is situated at an altitude of 6,700 feet (2,050 meters). Taihua Temple, built in the early 14th century, is blessed with verdant trees and clusters of flowers, where the fragrance of flowers is all-pervading. The grand sea-viewing Pavilion in Taihua Temple is a great place to watch the sunrise off Dianchi Lake.
Sanqingge Pavilion together with Longmen Grotto is a jaw-dropping architectural complex built on the precipitous cliffs on Luohan Peak, the main peak of West Hill. All structures here are completely engraved on stones, and it is where the highlight of West Hill lies in. Looking down on Longmen Grotto, you can see the auspicious cliff, while looking forward will give you a panoramic view of the inviting Dianchi Lake.
West Hill was called Green Bird Hill during the Tang Dynasty, and Taihua Hill during the Ming and Qing Dynasty. Since it is situated in the west of Kunming, it is called West Hill by the locals. Seen from a distance, West Hill resembles a “sleeping beauty,” lying silently beside the breathtaking Dianchi Lake. In West Hill, you would be surrounded by lush trees, blooming flowers, singing birds and bubbling waters, which lives up to its fame as “The First Wonder in Kunming”.
Admission Ticket: 40 Yuan on peak season, 30 Yuan during off-season
Opening Time: 8:00-19:00
Location: Xishan District, Kunming City, Yunnan Province
How to get there: Take No. 5 bus and transfer to No.6 Bus at Liangjia River to get there. Or get to Yunnan Restaurant first and then take the tourist shuttle bus to get there.