Yunnan Snow Tours: How to plan a trip to enjoy snow in Yunnan?

Generally speaking, Yunnan enjoys a mild climate with pleasant weather but, due to its varied terrain with the Himalayas in the north and subtropics in the south, the weather is also diverse in different regions. Most areas of Yunnan is mild in winter and cool in summer. In Winter, some regions in Yunnan still have temperature of over 20˚C. So snow in Yunnan is relatively rare and many places in the south and west Yunnan will never see snow all the year around. Only in the north area of Yunnan such as Shangrila and Zhaotong, it will often snow in the winter. 

When Does it Usually Snow in Yunnan?

Winter is the time for snow anywhere in the world that has a temperate climate, so is the Yunnan. For the snowy areas of the region, the snows can start falling at November or December, and can last until February or March.

Winter in Yunnan is not all freezing cold and inhospitable, and there are areas that have warmer weather even in November and December. But for the snow scenes, it is best to travel to the northern areas of Yunnan such as Diqing Prefecture and Zhaotong, where there is more chance of seeing snow in winter.

And while there may be snowy landscapes in some areas of Yunnan, that does not mean they are inaccessible. You can see the snowy mountains in Yunnan capped with snow such as Haba Snow Mountain, Meili Snow Mountain, etc.

Where Does it Snow in Yunnan?


Diqing Tibetan Autonomous Prefecture is situated in the northwest of Yunnan Province, bordered on the northeast by Sichuan Province, and on the northwest by the Tibet Autonomous Region. Enjoying a typical plateau climate, Diqing may snow in October, which is encompassed by the Hengduan Mountains, and the terrain varies greatly, so the temperature difference of a day is great too. Diqing is an ideal destination for whom love climbing and hiking. As for hiking, Tiger Leaping Gorge and Yubeng Village may be tourists’ best choice. And Climbing Haba Snow Mountain is also recommended.


Influenced by the low latitude and moderate elevation, Zhaotong has a plateau monsoon three-dimensional climate with cool and dry winters. Temperatures frequently drop below freezing at night in winter, though the days warm up to around 10 °C. Snow often comes to Zhaotong and most part of its area will meet heavy snow in winter such as the famous Dashanbao Nature Reserve.


Qujing often welcome snows in winter, especially Huize county and Xuanwei county. Heavy snow doesn’t offer occur in Qujing.


With an altitude of 2400 meters above sea level, Lijiang enjoys a highland climate with distinct dry and rainy seasons. It has three different climatic zones, ranging from subtropical in the southeast, warm temperatures in the center, and cold temperatures in the northwest. What’s more, vertical climate in some highlands can also be seen in Lijiang. Every winter, Jade Dragon Snow Mountain will snow. 


Dali is a plateau monsoon climate, the temperature from December to the next January is slightly low. Sometimes there will be light snow, but you can still climb to Cangshan Mountain and the Erhai Lake will never frozen. 


Kunming is known as the “City of Eternal Spring”. In recent years, the winter in Kunming is colder than before. Snow is not often seen in Kunming city. While in the suburb area of Luquan County, it snows on the Jiaozi Snow Mountain.

Tours to Enjoy the Snow in Yunnan

Snow Mountain Tour

There are more 150 mountain peaks in Yunnan Province. Snow Mountain Climbing is about the hiking and climbing tours to the famous mountains in Yunnan especially the Three Parallel Rivers Area. Haba Snow Mountain is the most popular mountain to climb among these mountains. Besides, climbing up a snow mountain such as Jade Dragon Snow Mountain, Jiaozi Snow Mountain are worth to have a try. 

Suggested Yunnan Snow Mountain Climbing Tours:
1 Day Jade Dragon Snow Mountain Hiking Tour (4642 Meters) from Wenhai Lake
2 Days Jiaozi Snow Mountain Hiking Tour
4 Days Haba Snow Mountain Climbing Adventure with Tiger Leaping Gorge Tour
5 Days Shangrila Discovery with Meili Snow Mountain Pilgrimage

Please read more about Yunnan Snow Mountain Climbing Tours.

Skiing Tour in Yunnan

Due to the warm winter weather in Yunnan, people never see much snow in their lives. As for skiing, few ski field are available in Yunnan due to the demanding on the environment. Most of the snow mountains in Yunnan are too high and steep in elevation, especially the strong wind, partial snow and changeable weather, most of which are not suitable for the construction of snow fields. However, Yunnan’s snow mountains are always popular with tourists. And now there are several ski fields in Yunnan where tourists can enjoy the thrill and happiness of skiing. 

Lijiang Jade Dragon Snow Mountain ski resort in Yunnan is located at the eastern foot of Yulong Snow Mountain, which is the warmest natural alpine ski resort near the equator of the earth. Shangri-La ski resort is located in Hala Village, Nixi Township, Shangri-la, Diqing, with a total area of about 40 square kilometers. Yunnan Dahaicao Mountain International Ski Resort is located at Dahaicao Mountain Scenic area in Huize County. On February 2, 2018, Jiaozi Snow Mountain International Ski Field opened a primary snow track for trial operation.

For more information about Skiing in Yunnan.

Snow Mountains in Yunnan

Fall and winter are the best times to see snow-capped mountains and peaks. In Yunnan, most of the time, if you want to see heavy snow in Yunnan, you can visit the snow mountains. There are eight snow mountains in Yunnan, including Jiaozi Snow Mountain, Jade Dragon Snow Mountain, Haba Snow Mountain, Meili Snow Mountain, Bala Gezong Snow Mountain, Baima Snow Mountain, Tianbao Snow Mountain, and Shika Snow Mountain. Below we introduce part of them. 

Jiaozi Snow Mountain

Jiaozi snow mountain is a seasonal snow mountain, only from November of the first year to April of the next year when the mountain is covered with pure white snow, with beautiful icefalls hanging from cliffs. Rivers are frozen. The tree branches are coated white, the grassland is hidden by the huge white carpet of snow. Animals are having a good rest in their caves. It is so tranquil and peaceful. Snow usually begins to accumulate in November, and by mid-winter, the trees and ground are often completely covered by fluffy white banks of snow. Temperatures during this time can dip well below freezing and the wind can be intense.                    

Jade Dragon Snow Mountain

Jade Dragon Snow Mountain (Yulong Mountain) is the southernmost glacier in the Northern Hemisphere. Looking from Lijiang Old Town in the south which is 15 kilometers (nine miles) away, the snow-covered and fog-enlaced mountain resembles a jade dragon lying in the clouds, hence the name. Spring and winter is the best season for seeing snow-covered landscape of Jade Dragon Snow Mountain. During that time, Jade Dragon Snow Mountain has clear weather and dry air, the snow mountain gleams white, no matter for visiting or shooting, Jade Dragon Snow Mountain is the most charming at this time. 

Meili Snow Mountain

Meili Snow Mountain is one of the most sacred mountains of Tibetan Buddhism. Meili Snow Mountain boasts numerous snow-clad ridges and peaks, thirteen of which are more than 6,000 meters above the sea level. The highest peak Kawagebo, which rises to 6,740 metres, has not been conquered by humans which attracts countless climbers. The golden sunrise on the dramatic snow-capped peaks of Meili Snow Mountain is a must-see for most tourists who want to admire the spectacular scenery of this mountain.

Haba Snow Mountain

Haba Snow Mountain is a mountain rising above the northwest side of Tiger Leaping Gorge in Yunnan. It is covered by snow year-round. The upstanding main peak, together with four little peaks around it, seems to be a shining crown on a fine day in the distance. Best time to climb Haba Snow Mountain is between mid of March till end of June and mid of September till mid of December. Sometimes, they are partly hidden in clouds and mist and the crown becomes dimly visible; sometimes, they are totally lost.

Baima Snow Mountain

With the altitude of 5,430 meters, Baima Snow Mountain is covered with snow all year round. Tourists can enjoy the landscape of the snow-covered area in the winter. Seen from afar, the mountain (the most magnificent part of the Hengduan Mountain Range) is covered with white snow and presents a spectacular view to travelers. Crossing over the Baima Snow Mountain Nature Reserve needs to climbing two passes(Lalaka Pass and Baima Pass). With high altitude and strong wind, it is necessary to keep warm and prevent altitude sickness.

Shika Snow Mountain

Boasting its precipitous snow peaks, beautiful valleys, forests, lakes, meadows and numerous legends, it is a comprehensive scenic spots best reflecting the romantic charming of Shangri-la, which attracts many people here for hiking and adventure. In winter, the mountain is coated with snow. The white clouds, the white mountain, and surrounding white landscape with the Tibetan houses contrast superbly with the blue sky. 

Please read more about the Mountains in Yunnan.