Ear Lake), just as its name implies,
is similar in form of an ear. Two
kilometers east of Dali, it is a fresh
water lake, and in the middle of it,
there are islets and sandbars. Covering
250 square kilometers, the blue, rippling
lake and the snow-covered Mt. Cangshan
add radiance and beauty to each other.
The scene is, therefore, described
as "Silver Cangshan and Jade
Three main islands and
several temples and villages along
the lake's dry eastern shore are worth
visiting. About an hour by boat from
Xianguan is Golden Shuttle Island
(Jinsuo Dao), with a small fishing
community on the east side and a cave
for exploring. On the shore, directly
north of the island, is a rocky peninsula
crowned by a pavilion and temple.
Sacred Buddhist buildings, destroyed
and rebuilt many times, have stood
on this spot for nearly 1,500 years.
Luoyuan Temple was badly damaged during
the Culture Revolution but has been
put back together and has great charm.
Visitors can have their fortunes told
by an old priest who guides them in
shaking and selecting a single bamboo
stick from a bundle of 100. The numbered
stick corresponds to a specific fortune.
A tiny, picturesque temple
island, Xiao Putuo Dao, dating from
the 15th century, is devoted to Guanyin,
the Goddess of Mercy. The outside
walls have been restored with pointed
caves is especially nice. On the shore
nearby is the fishing village of Haiyin,
whose boatmen are steeped in the lore
of the lake. One of their specialties
is night fishing for the huge 40-kilogram
(88-pound) 'green fish'.
Dali Sights & Attractions