Stone Forest of Lunan
Shilin, Stone Forest of Lunan, Yunnan travel information
The journey from Kunming to the Stone Forest of Lunan in the Yunnan province takes about 1.5 hours via the highway. Another option for a trip to the stone forest of Lunan is by high-speed train from Kunming main station. The high-speed train from Kunming to the Stone Forest takes only about 20 minutes. From Shilin railway station it is about 3km to the main entrance to the Stone Forest of Lunan. There are also direct trains from Dali via Kunming to Shilin Stone Forest.
"Shilin" literally means "Stone Forest". Lunan is the next bigger city. The Stone Forest of Lunan is one of the most famous and most visited sights of the Yunnan province. This 12 km2 large karst area with its bizarrely shaped, up to 30 meters high rock needles is one of the most remarkable rock formations in China and was added to the UNESCO World Heritage list in 2007. Scientific research has determined the age of the Stone Forest of Lunan to be more than 270 million years. The area around Lunan used to be a big sea. As the water level declined, huge rocks emerged, which were formed during the following millennia by erosion from wind and rain into the strange rock formations we see today.
A labyrinth of well-maintained paths leads through the Stone Forest of Lunan and invites to an extensive exploration. Tickets for the Stone Forest can be bought at the Visitor Centre. The best thing to do here is to also buy the tickets for the electric car (25RMB round trip). From the visitor center you drive by electric car about 2.5 km to the main entrance of the Stone Forest of Lunan. You can easily explore the stone forest of Lunan on your own. If you stray a bit away from the main routes of the Chinese tour groups, you will have the stunning scenery of the Stone Forest Shilin all by yourself.