Dongchuan Red Land

Yunnan features a warm and humid environment. The iron deposits in the soil have gradually developed a dazzling color caused by oxidation. Dongchuan Red Land is actually named "Hua Shitou (color stone)", which is located more than 40 kilometers southwest of Dongchuan District of Kunming City (there happens to stand a milestone of 109 km). For an area of nearly 50 km radius, tourists can see the typical Yunnan Red.

Quick Facts
  • Chinese name: 东川红土地 Dōng Chuān Hóng Tǔ Dì
  • Suggested time: 8 hours
  • Ticket: free
  • Address: Hua Shitou (Colorful Stone) Village, Xintian Town, Dongchuan District, Kunming, Yunnan, China
  • Open hours: all day
  • Best time to visit: April to May (as the wheat matures), September to December (when buckwheat and rapeseed grow vigorously), and February to March (when there is snow in the field)
  • How to get there:
    Take the shuttle bus to Fazhe Town in Kunming North Bus Terminal and get off at Hua Shitou Village (the fare is about RMB 37);
    Or take the shuttle bus to Majie Town (Luoping County, Qujing City, Yunnan Province - Qujing City is on the northeast of Kunming City) at Dongchuan District Bus Terminal and get off at Colorful Stone Village.

Highlights of Dongchuan Red Land

The land is divided into fields according to the various crops. Seen from a distance, the colorful landscape is a spectacular patchwork against the azure sky and clouds. The scenic spots of the red land are quite scattered. There is an obvious intersection near the Village, which connects the Village to Red Land Town, Dongchuan District and Kunming Expressways. The three lines offer three routes for visitors to choose: the northwestern route, the northeastern route, and the southern route.

Northweatern Route

Sights to see when traveling from the south to the north are ‘Wavy Land’, ‘Brocade Garden’, ‘Colorful Slope’ and ‘Dama Terrace’. ‘Wavy Land’ is located in the west of the T section, where the layers of terraces are like tumbling waves. ‘Color Slope’ and ‘Brocade Garden’ are the names for one plot of land. Seen from different angles, it has strong visual impacts. Due to the large scale of plantation for potatoes, buckwheat and other crops, the colors are just stunning in the blooming season. Dama Terraces in the northernmost part of the Northwestern Route is where photographers shoot their best pictures of the sunrise.

Luoxia (Sunset) Ditch Sunrise

Northeastern Route

From the south to the north, there are ‘Daping Pond’, ‘Old Dragon Tree’, ‘Donggua Bay’, ‘Luoxia (Sunset) Ditch’ and ‘Moon Field’. The ‘Old Dragon Tree’ is a conifer tree that is one thousand years old. It stands alone on the red land witnessing the many changes in fortunes over time. Local people dry the terraces for seeding sprouts. While the lines of Luoxia Ditch are like the front face of Pipa (A traditional Chinese instrument) When people decide to take photos of the sunset, they get the best view if they to move to the ditch. ‘Moon Field’ is about 20 kilometers away off Hua Shitou Village. This is where the terraced landscape and the canyon landscape are integrated. Layered backgrounds add to the visual impact of photos.

Southern Route

Score Col

The southern Route leads to Kunming. ‘Score Col’, ‘Dawo Pond’ and ‘Daya Pass’ are found along this road. ‘Score Col’ is only one kilometer away from Hua Shitou Village. The almost horizontal terraces look like colorful musical staves. The farmers working in the fields appear like the notes therein.

Tips:

1. Red Land is a naturally formed scenic spot. It is free. Please pay attention to your safety when you decide to visit it either in a vehicle or on foot.
2. The temperature difference between day and night for the Red Land is very great. Please take measures to keep warm at night.
3. There is strong UV when the day is clear (most of the time). Please prepare yourself well. And the wind can blow heavily. Thick fog can cover some sections of the road when it rains or in the dawn or dark time. Please stop driving when the visibility is that poor.
4. To take photos of sunrise, you have to get up very early. Please arrange your sleep well and do not drink too much of the local liquor the day before.
5. Please do not take photos (especially of people or their homes) without acquiring permission from the local people. Alpine crops grow very slowly. Please do not trample crops nor enter the crop fields even for the sake of artistic creation.