Volunteer Program in China

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Yunnan

Yunnan, located in the southwest of China, borders Myanmar, Laos and Vietnam. Beautiful landscapes, colorful ethnic customs and a pleasant climate make Yunnan a lure for all tourists. Visitors will be fascinated by its spectacular natural scenery, including snow-capped peaks, lush jungles and sapphire-like lake. 

Thanks to the high elevation, Yunnan hugs abundant tourist resources as well as world-famous attractions, waiting for outsiders to discover its unique beauty.

Lijiang Old Town

Lijiang Old Town, which is perfectly adapted to the uneven topography of this key commercial and strategic site, has retained a historic townscape of high quality and authenticity. Its architecture is noteworthy for the blending of elements from several cultures that have come together over many centuries. Lijiang also possesses an ancient water-supply system of great complexity and ingenuity that still functions effectively today. 

As its center there is a square. It was first built in 1126 in the late Song Dynasty and in 1253 Kublai (the first emperor of the Yuan Dynasty) was stationed here on his march into the south. Lijiang is world renowned as an ancient town built in a simple and artistic style and scientifically laid out. It was listed as a national historical and cultural city in 1986. 
Lijiang is surrounded by Lion Mountain in the west and by Elephant and Golden Row Mountains in the north. These mountains in the northwest shelter it from the cold wind. In the southeast there are fertile fields, which are dozens of kilometers long. Lijiang is favored with plentiful sunlight, an east wind and clear spring water, which flows in three streams and reaches every family. The streets are paved with the local stone slabs, which do not get muddy in the rainy season and are free of dust in the dry season. Many stone bridges and arches in the city were built during the Ming and Qing Dynasties and orderly roads and lanes extend to four directions from the central square. Residential houses are made of timber; most have a screen wall in front and some have a quadruple courtyard, in which local people plant many flowers. 
The ancient traditional culture of the Naxi ethnic group is the Dongba culture, which is based on the Dongba Religion. Believers practice witchcraft, are skilled in medicine and the culture is passed on through literature and art. 
The Dongba language has more than 1,300 separate words, which are written in primitive pictographic characters. There are more than 1,400 types of Dongba scriptures written in these characters and they take up 20,000 volumes. The scriptures cover religion, philosophy, history, local customs, literature, art, astronomy, medicine, the calendar, geography, flora, fauna, dancing, painting and music.

Dali Ancient Town

Dali Ancient Town is about 13km away from Xiaguan in Dali City and is one of Dali's Three Ancients-ancient city, ancient pagoda and ancient steles. History of Dali can be dates back to 1382 during the Ming Dynasty and it has been listed among the top historic cities of China.

Unlike any other Chinese town, the traditional Bai ethnic folk houses give the town distinctive feel. The town's layout was uniform, with five main streets from south to north and eight main streets from east to west, while marketplaces were neatly arranged within the town, which has remained unchanged to this date. Besides the Bai houses, the houses with gray-green roof tiles, peculiar workshops, temples, schools and churches with antique flavor are scattered. Traditional marble artworks, like pencil vases, striped screen, and a variety of woven handicrafts of fine straw are laid chockablock on both sides of the street to be appreciated and purchased. Its grand city wall, traditional Bai houses and marvelous scenery have been attracted many visitors.

Dali is also famous for the many types of marble it produces, which are used primarily in construction and for decorative objects. In fact, Dali is so famous for the stone that the name of marble in Chinese is literally Dali Stone.
Dali's newly finished administrative district that houses the newly opened Dali International Convention Center is in Longshan District. The Dali government's urban planning keeps its old and new districts separate, so those coming here for the first time often feel they have entered a time tunnel.
The new city is known as Xiaguan and is south of the old city. The old city was built during Ming Dynasty emperor Hongwu's reign (1368–1398). Owing to the distance between them, the old city is still peaceful and quiet.

Jade Dragon (Yu Long) Snow Mountain

The 13 peaks of 18,360-foot Jade Dragon (Yu Long) Snow Mountain, a treasure of wild plants and rare animals, are like a silver dragon lying in the clouds.

Awesome and unconquered, they dominate the Lijiang Plain. Some have described Jade Dragon Snow Mountain as a radiant cornet crowning Lijiang's head. 
Scientists say she arose from an ancient geosyncline 230 million years ago in an age when dinosaurs began to increase and formed her present shape sometime during the last 600,000 years, even as late as 12,000 years ago.  
Storms frequently rage around the glaciers and silver-gray rocks and eternal snowfields of her five primary peaks. 

Xishuangbanna

Xishuangbanna is located at the ultmost southeast part of China . It is not only the major passageway and base to Southeast Asia and south Asia, but  a window of Yunnan province opened to the world.