The old town of Lijiang was once an important commercial town along the Tea Horse Route. Merchants and traders from Sichuan, Yunnan and Tibet, as well as ethnic groups of the Han, Tibetan, Naxi and Bai cluster and develop their businesses here from 13th century. The charming old town integrates the mountains, rivers, trees and architecture to form a unique habitat. Tile-roofed, timber-framed houses, carved roof beams and decorated arched gateways combine the characteristics of the Han, Tibetan, Bai and Naxi culture. This ancient town was inscribed as a UNESCO World Heritage since 1997.
Today, a number of old wooden mansions are turned into coffee shops and souvenir stores. A leisure walk along the old town, crossing the network of canals and waterways, make a stop at a local souvenir stores to look at the local pottery, Naxi musical instrument and arts and crafts, and when tired, take a seat at a coffee shop and watch passer-by, a perfect way to spend a lazy afternoon.
The MTV “Love in Lijiang” shows some of the charming sceneries of this beautiful ancient town.