km. from Xiaguan lies the town of Xizhou by the side of Erhai
Lake and the Wanhua Brook. Historically, it was a military fortress
of Nanzhao Kingdom and a temporary palace of the King of Nanzhao.
Because of its favourable geographical situation, the town used
to be a commercial centre before 1949 and there were more than
140 national capitalist families among whom the Yan's, the Dong's,
the Yin's and the Yang's were the biggest ones in capital. Their
houses are of the typical Bai design known as "Sanfang Yizhaobi"
(a courtyard rooms on three sides and a screen wall on the remaining
side) and "Sihe Wutianjing" (dne big courtyard with
four smaller ones at the four corners of the main one). Xizhou
Town is composed of more than 88 compounds of this kind. Some
have several yards and some have yards within yards. In short,
the houses here show the strong and unique Bai national characteristics
in their painted roofs and pillars, upturned eaves, and "dougong"
systems (double bow-shaped brackets on columns supporting upturned
recent years, streets and roads have been widened, new markets
have been established and a scene of prosperity prevails throughout
the area. In 1988, one of the compounds of the Yang's was made
to open to foreign visitors with the name of "Xizhou Tianzhuang"
(Countryside Villa at Xizhou) by the Tourist Bureau of Dali Prefecture.
Pagodas of Dali
City OF Dali