Honghe Culture

Culture in Honghe is diverse and colorful. Different ethnic groups create different festivals and culture. In Honghe prefecture, Hani people and Yi people as the representatives, the cultures they created, like terrace culture, have attracted a crowd of tourists. 

History of Honghe

As early as the Han dynasty (206BC-220AD), the central government established shires to govern the region, which was the beginning of the central government's sphere of influence in the region. On November 18, 1957, Honghe Hani and Yi autonomous prefecture was established, made up of the Mengzi Special Zone and the former Honghe Hani autonomous region.

More History of Honghe

Religion Culture

Honghe prefecture is one of the main inhabited areas of Hani and Yi ethnic groups in China and also one of the areas where Hui people are relatively concentrated in Yunnan province. Therefore, there are quite a lot mosques in honghe, mainly distributed in GejiuLuxi County and Mile. Most famous one is Shadian Grand Mosque.

Shadian Grand Mosque

Shadian town, located in Gejiu city of Honghe prefecture, is a famous Hui community in Yunnan province. It has the largest mosque in southeast China, Shadian Grand Mosque. The grand mosque of Shadian was built in 1684. After several renovations and reconstruction, Shadian new grand mosque was built into a large-scale mosque with a construction area of 18,000 square meters. It can contain 10,000 prayers at a time.

Other Mosques in Honghe

Honghe Architecture Culture

The architecture culture of Honghe is represented by the architecture of ethnic minorities and ancient towns, among which the Hani housing construction and Jianshui old town are the most representative.

House Building of Hani 

Referring to Hani ethnic minority, the first thing that comes to mind is the mushroom house, and then the clay-roof house(土掌房). They are an important expression of Hani traditional architecture. Mushroom house is not only a place to live, but also a manifestation of Hani ecological culture. Honghe prefecture has a large number of ethnic groups, each with its own characteristics: Dai people mainly live in the hot river valley and plain area, the alpine mountains are inhabited by Miao and Yao people, and the Hani and Yi people live in the pleasantly cool mid-levels. Hani ethnic minority includes various branches, the house shape is also different, generally there are thatched cottage, mushroom house, clay-roof house, stilt house, tile-roofed house and so on. Among them, the mushroom house made of thatch is the most traditional and common house building, and the mushroom house is also the architectural style with the most profound Hani culture. It got the name because the outside of the house looks like the mushroom in the mountains.

Jianshui Ancient Town

Jianshui ancient town, called Lin'an in the ancient time, was built in the Tang dynasty, has a history of more than 1200 years. There are more than 50 well-preserved exquisite ancient buildings inside the ancient towns, which can be called an "ancient architecture museum" and "folk house museum". The ancient town is not big, mainly several streets with Lin'an road as the center. The most famous ones in ancient town are Jianshui Confucius Temple and Zhu Family Garden, and there are also many old buildings worth a visit.

Terraced Culture in Honghe

Reclaiming terraces in the mountains is the specialty of the Hani ethnic minority and has been a tradition for thousands of years. After experiencing more than 1200 years, Hani people have created the large-scale Hani terraced fields by taking advantage of the geographical and climatic conditions of "four seasons in one mountain and different weathers every ten miles" in the southwest plateau, have built the farming pattern of "forest, villages, rice terraces, rivers", forming the core of terraced culture. Honghe prefecture is featuring high mountains and deep valleys, from the valley to the top of the mountain, there appears the three-dimensional climate of tropical, subtropical, temperate zong, frigid zone. The virtuous circle of "forest, village, terrace fields, rivers" has formed the agricultural ecosystem of Hani wisdom, the high coordination between man and nature, is the product of the wonderful combination of culture and nature.

Ethnic Groups in Honghe

Honghe Prefecture is a frontier ethnic minority autonomous prefecture in which 10 ethnic groups are indigenous peoples. Ethnic groups in Honghe include Han, Yi, Hani, Miao, Zhuang, Dai, Yao, Hui, Lahu, Bai and other minorities. Yi and Hani are two main ethnic minority groups, accounting for more than 40% of total population.

Ethnic Towns in Honghe

There are 3 autonomous counties (Pingbian Miao Autonomous County(屏边苗族自治县), Jinping Miao, Yao and Dai Autonomous County(金平苗族瑶族傣族自治县) and Hekou Yao Autonomous County(河口瑶族自治县), as well as 5 ethnic towns in Honghe, namely, Dazhuang Hui Ethnic Town(大庄回族乡), Mingjiu Miao Ethnic Town(鸣鹫苗族镇), Qilubai Miao Ethnic Town(期路白苗族乡), Laozhai Miao Ethnic Town(老寨苗族乡) and Qiaotou Miao and Zhuang Ethnic Town(桥头苗族壮族乡).

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Traditional Ethnic Villages in Honghe

According to the list of traditional Chinese villages, there are many traditional ethnic villages in Honghe, mainly distributed in Jianshui county, Honghe county and Shiping County. Here below are several of them. 

  • Jiajizhai Village of Jijie Town in Gejiu City, Honghe红河州个旧市鸡街镇加级寨村
  • Tuanshan Village of Xizhuang Town in Jianshui County, Honghe红河州建水县西庄镇团山村
  • Chengzi Village of Yongning Township in Luxi County, Honghe红河州泸西县永宁乡城子村
  • Zhengying Village of Baoxiu Town in Shiping County, Honghe红河州石屏县宝秀镇郑营村
  • Tala Village of Niujie Town in Shiping County, Honghe红河州石屏县牛街镇他腊村委会他腊村
  • Azheke Village of Xinjie Town in Yuanyang County, Honghe红河州元阳县新街镇爱春村委会阿者科村
  • Nimei Village of Leyu Town in Honghe County, Honghe红河州红河县乐育乡尼美村

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Ethnic Festivals and Customs

Hani Ethnic Minority

Hani ethnic minority is one of the unique ethnic minorities in Yunnan, mainly inhabited in the south bank of the Red River, Lvchun county, Yuanyang, Jinping County and part area of Jianshui County. Hani minority has a long history, together with Yi and Lahu ethnic minorities, originated from the ancient Qiang tribes. During the Sui and Tang dynasties, the Hani and Yi ancestors were both known as the Wuman(乌蛮) tribe. The traditional festivals of the Hani people are mainly Shiyuenian(十月年) and June Festival(六月节). Shiyuenian, known as Zhatele(扎勒特), is celebrated every year in the 10th lunar calendar and lasts five or six days. It is the longest and richest festival of the Hani people of the year, similar to the Spring Festival of the Han nationality. Kuzhazha festival, known as June festival, is held in the 6th lunar month, lasting 3-5 days. 

Yi Ethnic Minority

The ancient books and literature of Yi are rich, and there are more than two thousand ancient books are scattered in the folk of Honghe prefecture, and the famous literatures include the "Ni Su Duo Jie(尼苏夺节)", "Genesis of Yi(彝族创世纪)", "the solar calendar" and so on. The classic dance include A Xi Tiao Yue(阿细跳月) and Yanhe dance(烟盒舞), and the classic music has Haicai tune(海菜腔) of Yi people in Shiping. Yanhe dance and Haicai tune were included in the first batch of national intangible cultural heritage list. The grandest festival of Yi people is Torch Festival. 

Miao Ethnic Minority

The Miao ethnic minority moved into the autonomous prefecture late, mainly living in Pingbian, Jinping, Hekou and Mengzi. Due to the long-term communication with the Han people, many Miao people speak Chinese well, and there are also many Chinese words in their Miao language. The high mountains inhabited by the Miao ethnic minority generally have fewer water sources and poor land, and can only grow dryland crops such as corn and buckwheat. However, the vast area and rich pastures provide convenient conditions for the development of animal husbandry. Therefore, the Miao ethnic minority not only engages in farming, but also raises yellow cattle and packhorses in large quantities. As for clothing, different places are not exactly the same, women's clothing is more diverse. Women are good at textile, embroidery, batik, with exquisite craftsmanship and strong ethnic characteristics. The Miao minority is rich in folk oral literature and has a wide range of contents. Grand festival is Caihuashan(踩花山), which is held every year on the 5th day of the 1st lunar month.

Intangible Cultural Heritages and its Heritors in Honghe

With a large number of ethnic minorities, especially Hani and Yi people, Honghe has many intangible cultural heritages with ethnic characteristics, including Lezuo Dance, Haicai Tune, Yanhe dance and four seasons production ditties, etc. Every intangible cultural heritage has its inheritors, who play a vital role in the promotion and inheritance of culture.

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Culture Tours including Honghe

With many ethnic festivals and mosques in Honghe, our Honghe culture tours are mainly festival tour and muslim culture tour. During the tour, you can meet diverse ethnic cultures in local villages and Long Street Banquet, or visit the famous mosques in Honghe to learn more about Yunnan muslim culture. 

Festival Tours

Muslim Tours

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