Autonomous Prefectures in Yunnan

Autonomous prefectures are one of the administrative divisions of the People’s Republic of China. They are at the same level as municipalities, regions and leagues at the prefectural level and are under the jurisdiction of provinces and autonomous regions. The autonomous are established in the areas where ethnic minorities live together. There are 30 autonomous prefectures in China and 8 in Yunnan.

1. Chuxiong Yi Autonomous Prefecture

Chuxiong Yi Autonomous Prefecture has jurisdiction over 9 counties, 1 county-level city, 103 towns and townships. It is located in central Yunnan Province, east of Kunming City, west of Dali Bai Autonomous Prefecture, south of Puer City and Yuxi City, north of Panzhihua CitySichuan Province.

Top Chuxiong Attractions include Yiren Ancient Town, Jiyi Grand Valley, Guanglu Old Town, Shiyang Ancient Town, etc. 

2. Honghe Hani and Yi Autonomous Prefecture

Honghe Hani and Yi Autonomous Prefecture has jurisdiction over 4 county-level cities, 6 counties and 3 autonomous counties. It is the epitome of Yunnan’s economy, society, humanity and nature, is the birthplace of Yunnan’s modern industry, as well as China’s the landway passage and bridgehead towards asean. 

The top sights in Honghe are Yuanyang Hani rice terraces and Jianshui Old Town

3. Wenshan Zhuang and Miao Autonomous Prefecture

Wenshan Zhuang and Miao Autonomous Prefecture has jurisdiction over 1 county-level city and 7 counties. The government is located in Wenshan City. With the rich natural tourism resource and profound history culture, Wenshan enjoys the ancient land and heroic people. 

Top attractions in Wenshan are Puzhehei Scenic Area and Bamei Village.

4. Xishuangbanna Dai Autonomous Prefecture

Xishuangbanna Dai Autonomous Prefecture has jurisdiction over one county-level city and two counties: Jinghong City, Menghai County and Mengla County. The prefectural seat locates in Jinghong City. It is connected with Laos and Myanmar by mountains and rivers and also close to Thailand and Vietnam. The annual splash festival is held on April 13-15, known as the “Oriental Carnival”.

The top attractions in Xishuangbanna includes Xishuangbanna Tropical Botanical GardenWild Elephant Valley, WangTianShu Scenic Spot, etc.

5. Dali Bai Autonomous Prefecture 

Dali Bai Autonomous Prefecture has jurisdiction over 1 county-level city, 8 counties and 3 autonomous counties. Enjoying long history, Dali is one of the earliest cradle of Yunnan culture and has created glorious Dali Kingdom. 

Cangshan MountainErhai LakeDali Ancient Town and Three Pagodas of Chongsheng Temple are the representative scenic spots in Dali.

6. Dehong Dai and Jingpo Autonomous Prefecture 

Dehong Dai and Jingpo Autonomous Prefecture covers 2 cities and 3 counties. Its government seat is located in Mangshi City. Dehong Prefecture is the juncture for the Chinese Economic Area, Southeast Economic Area and South Asia Economic Area.

The the famous attractions in Dehong are One Tree ForestMoli Tropical RainforestRuili River.

7. Nujiang Lisu Autonomous Prefecture

Nujiang Lisu Autonomous Prefecture has jurisdiction over 1 city, 1 county and 2 autonomous counties. Its government is located in Liuku Town of Lushui City. It is the only autonomous prefecture of Lisu ethnic minority in China. Among all the ethnic minorities inhabited in Nujiang, Dulong nationality and Nu nationality can be only found here. 

Nujiang Grand CanyonBingzhongluo Scenic AreaThree Parallel Rivers Natural Reserve are the top attractions in Nujiang.

8. Diqing Tibetan autonomous prefecture 

Diqing Tibetan autonomous prefecture has jurisdiction over 3 county-level administrative regions, including 1 county-level city, 1 county and 1 autonomous county. namely, and . The people’s government of Diqing prefecture is stationed in Changzheng Avenue of Shangri-la city. Diqing is a glorious place, with dense forests, alpine lakes, grasslands, and gorges distributed among the meadows and plains.

Top Diqing attractions are Pudacuo National ParkNapahai lakeTiger Leaping Gorge, Songzanlin Monastery, Meili Snow Mountain.