21-09-2023 6.761 Views

Yunnan is probably the Chinese province with the greatest cultural diversity. In addition to the dominant Han (Chinese) ethnic group, the authorities have 27 different ethnic minorities (about 8% of the population), most often linked to border countries. Sometimes minorities are extremely isolated in the countryside and have very distinct characteristics, such as the Naxi, who are a population of about 320,000 people and who have their own language and have had their own writing before. Or the Musuo (80,000 people), whose social structure is still matriarchal today.

When Tibet was attached to the Republic of China, a large part of the Tibetan plateaus was attached to Yunnan, with a population of 120 000 Tibetans additioned.


Regarding beliefs, all major religions are represented in China and Yunnan: Taoism, Buddhism, Islam and Christianity, but also animism.


Chinese cuisine is very popular within foreign gourmets. So you will never stop enjoying yourself during your trip to Yunnan. Note that the cuisine of Yunnan is very varied, due to the fact that the province has the most different ethnic cultures and therefore a great diversity in gastronomic culture. Depending on the different peoples, you will find their own specialities, for example: the Dai specialty of fish with lemongrass, which is very frequently found in Xishuangbanna (as well as in Vietnam); sticky rice with flowers, which is a very popular specialty of the Zhuang people; Dali’s Bai papaya water or rushan cheese.

In China, breakfast is a true meal made from rice porridge, with crumbs of meat, salted vegetables and dried fish; so don’t be surprised if you are offered this dish for breakfast. Generally, lunch is from 11:30 am and as for dinner, the Chinese eat early, around 6:30 pm/6:30 pm. If you like the nightlife, you will be disappointed because the Chinese are early sleepers (except in the big cities where you will find very lively neighborhoods in the evening).

The dishes are not too spicy and have an excellent flavor. You will discover the «noodles that pass the bridge» which is the most famous specialty in Yunnan (this dish is composed of a broth, various meats, noodles and a special seasoning). Two products are well-known in the province: pu-erh tea, which is traditionally grown in Ninger, and xuanwei ham, which is used as a simmer to flavour braised dishes from Chinese cuisine and forms the basis of many broths. Finally, it would be inconceivable not to taste the rice cooked in a bamboo during your trip. There are two kinds, common bamboo rice and sticky rice with fragrant bamboo.


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