Dehong Culture

Dehong Culture is diverse and colorful, featuring the folk culture of the five indigenous ethnic minoritues. It is a place where multi-ethnic groups inhabit. Different nationalities create different cultures. Dehong boasts amazing Dai ethnic culture, Jingpo ethnic culture and cultures of other ethic groups, etc. All these will make your Yunnan Travel more attractive and productive. 

History of  Dehong

Dehong was called “Ancient Mengmao Kingdom” in the recording of The Pattra Sutra; it was named as the “Dianyue Elephant Riding Kingdom” under the pen of Simaqian; it was the Jinchi Kingdom in the book of “Marcopolo and His Travels”. Dehong is not only the outlet of the ancient “The Southwest Silk Road of China”, but also the outlet of the Yunnan-Myanmar Road. At present,it is still the golden port leading to South Asia and Southeast Asia. Since its founding in 1953, the Dehong Dai and Jingpo Autonomous Prefecture has been a great concern of the leaders of the CPC Central Committee and the State Council. The older generation of the Party and state leaders such as Mao Zedong, Liu Shaoqi, Zhou Enlai concerns the troops stationed in border areas, cadres and the people of all nationalities. Whatever, different ethnic groups live in the pure land in harmony.

More about History of Dehong Dai and Jingpo Autonomous Prefecture

Ethnic Groups in Dehong

Dehong prefecture is one of the 8 ethnic autonomous prefectures in Yunnan Province. Besides the Han nationality, there are more than 30 ethnic groups living in Dehong, mainly including the Dai, JingpoLisu, Achang and Deang ethnic groups.

Dehong Border Culture

Dehong is geographically in close connection with Myanmar. Border culture is also a highlight of Dehong tours. Ethnic groups lead a harmonious life in the border areas, Sino-Burmese Baobo Carnival is the best proof to the better development of friendship between Chinese and Burmese. Border trade and marktes are booming in Dehong, promoting the local economy. Join our Dehong Culture Tours, you will have a trip to know more about the border culture in Dehong.

Dehong Food Culture

The local people of Dehong have their own traditional food and their own taste. The Dai people's diet is sour and refreshing, and the Jingpo people’ s are spicy. The tastes of the localities are mixed,renewed and integrated into the local taste of Dehong. The cuisine and snack are the highlights of Dehong. Famous food of Dai people in Dehong has high similarity with that of the Dai ethnic group in Xishuangbanna, featuring the dishes such as Sapie (撒撇), Duosheng (剁生) and barbecues, etc. In the menu of Jingpo people in the the Dehong, the most featured dish is pestled dish like pestled dried beef (舂干巴).

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Ethnic Cultural Art in Dehong


  • Dai Language: Dai language belongs to Zhuang-Dai language branch of Zhuang-Dai language group of Sino-Tibetan languages. Dehong Dai scholars generally believe that the Dehong Dai script originates from the Pali script in India, and Dehong Dai script is changed from Myanmar script. There are old and new Dai languages. As of 2013, there was a Dai population of over 400,000 in Dehong, Baoshan, Lincang, Simao, Dali and Chuxiong using Dehong Dai language.
  • Jingpo Language: Jingpo language belongs to Jingpo language branch of Tibetan-Burmese group of Sino-Tibetan language. In China, it is mainly used in Mangshi, Longchuan, Ruili, Yingjiang and other counties in Dehong Autonomous Prefecture. The Kachin language is commonly spoken abroad, mainly in northern Myanmar.

Literature and Art

Poetry, stories and legends occupy an extremely important position in Dai literature and art. Dai poetry consists of ancient ballads, love songs and narrative poems.  There are 550 Dai narrative poems, including creation epic, myth epic, heroic epic and tragic narrative poem, with the “Lang’e and Sangluo” narrative poem as one of the representatives. Other major ethnic groups also play an important part in development of literature and folk art in Dehong, with their well preserved masterworks, skills and traditions passed down generation by generation. 

Traditional Handicraft

There are many handicrafts made by Dai people, the famous ones among them are Dai brocade, Dai silver ornaments, traditional hand-made paper of Dai people and slow-wheel pottery, ect. You shouldn’t miss these when you travel to Dehong, either buying them or experiencing the making process.

Dances and Songs

The traditional dances of the Dai ethnic minority mainly include Peacock Dance, Deer Dance, White Elephant Dance, Elephant-foot Drum dance, martial arts dance, etc. Jingpo ethnic group has Sword Dance while Achang people created the “Dengwoluo” Dance.

Religion Culture

Dehong Prefecture is a multi-ethnic and multi-religious frontier ethnic autonomous prefecture. Buddhism, Taoism, Islam, Christianity and Catholicism exist in this land. Buddhism in Dehong has two major groups, Theravada Buddhism and Han Buddhism. Some Animist religions are also widely spread. Dai, De 'ang and Achang in Dehong believe in Theravada Buddhism. Some Jingpo people believe in Christianity and Catholicism. The Hui people believe in Islam; Some Han people believe in Han Buddhism, Taoism and Christianity.

Dai Buddhism

Dai people in Dehong believe in Theravada Buddhism, and almost every Dai village has its own small temple, with some large and popular ones in designated places. The temples and pagodas were built and decorated in unique style. The Dai people exercise the religion sacrifices and activities in the temples and pagodas. If you want to know about the Theravada Buddhism and the architecture art of Dai temples and pagodas, you shouldn’t miss the temples in Dehong, particularly the famous ones such as Yunyan Stupa Jiele Great Golden PagodaMenghuan Golden Pagoda. Our Buddhism culture tour will also guide you to have a site watch of the Tree-Wrapped Pagoda and Pagoda-Wrapped Tree.

More about Temples in Dehong.


Some Jingpo people and Han Chinese in Dehong believe in Christianism. There is a population of 42701 followers and 228 churches in Dehong. The major two churches in Dehong including Dehong Church in Ruili City and Songshu Village Church in  Mangshi.


Besides the Christianism, some Jingpo people in Dehong believe in Christianism. There is a population of 1992 followers and 8 Christianity churches in Dehong. The two major Christianity churches in Dehong are located in Ruili City.


In the late Ming Dynasty, Taoism was introduced from Tengchong to Lianghe, Yingjiang and Longchuan. It is mainly spread among Han Chinese, Achang ethnic minority and some Dai people. Qingyun Temple in Yingjiang County is the only Taoism temple in Dehong


The Hui people in Dehong believe in Islam. Dehong Muslim Tours will guide you to visit the mosque in Dehong, know about the Muslim culture and taste Halal food in Muslim restaurants in Dehong.

Ethnic Festivals

Dehong festivals and activities tell you what to do during the festival tour in Dehong, and they will surely enrich your Yunnan Travel.  Dehong is a place where multi-ethnic groups inhabit. As the major minorities inhabited in Dehong, Dai, Jingpo, Achang, Lisu and Deang formed their distinctive ethnic culture which is also revealed in their ethnic festivals. Different nationalities create different cultures. Therefore, there are diverse festivals in Dehong. The most famous festivals in Dehong are Water Splashing Festival of Dai people and Munaozongge Festival of Jingpo people.

Read more about Festivals in Dehong.

Intangible Cultural Heritage

Dehong has splendid culture boasted by ethnic groups.   As of 2010, 13 projects of  Dehong culture have been announced by the State Council as the first, second and third batch of national protection lists, including Watering Flowers Festival (Jiaohuajie) of Deang ethnic group. The protection and inheritor of the intangible cultural heritage has made great contribution to the preservation and passing down of the ethnic culture.

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Ethnic Towns in Dehong

Dehong prefecture is one of the 8 ethnic autonomous prefectures in Yunnan Province. Besides the Han nationality, there are more than 30 ethnic groups living in Dehong, mainly including the Dai, Jingpo, Lisu, Achang and Deang ethnic groups. It is the main habitation of Jingpo, De 'ang and Achang ethnic minorities. For your Ethnic Culture Tours in Dehong, the following ethnic towns are recommended.

More about Ethnic Towns in Dehong.

Traditional Ethnic Villages in Dehong

The traditional ethnic villages usually have the well-preserved ethnic traditions, so they can be best choice for your Culture Tours in Dehong. Traveling to the traditional ethnic villages, you can explore the most authentic ethnic traditions which can't be seen anywhere else. Dadenghan Dai Village is one of the best recommendations.

More about Traditional Ethnic Villages in Dehong.

Ethnic Culture Protection Areas in Dehong

For better protection and passing down of the ethnic culture,  ethnic culture protecion areas were founded in Dehong.

Culture Tours Including Dehong

Our Yunnan Culture Tours  will guide you to experience the famous festivals in Yunnan, such as Kuoshi festival, Water Splashing Festival and Harvest festival, to learn and know more about Yunnanculture. Culture Tour Packages including Dehong include festival experiment and ethnic minority discovery.

Regional Culture in Dehong