Black Dragon Pool in Lijiang

Black Dragon Pool (also Heilongtan), or Jade Spring(Yuquan) Park is the main headwater of the Yushui River which goes through the Old Town. People believe that the gods of the Naxi people are living in the chestnut woods, beside the mouth of springs, behind the carved doors and below the bridges. The springs come from the god-protected mountains and gather in this place and finally form the dragon pool. Then water goes down a waterfall and becomes the Yuhe River, pouring life to the Old Town.

The Black Dragon Pool is like an ancient architecture museum. Some of the famous buildings were established suburbs have under protection actually collected from other places. People moved the traditional buildings that almost had been ruined here and let them be protected. Among them, the most famous buildings are the Villa Jietuolin of the King Mu and the Five Phoenixes Tower combines the typical Lamaism plane pattern and exquisite wooden structure of the Naxi architecture. Both the frame and the technology are unprecedented. The buildings can rarely be found even in the world of Chinese architecture.

The Black Dragon Pool’s distinguishing feature caters to the habituation of the Naxi who loves nature very much. In the past, it was a good choice for people form the Old Town to go picnicking. They gave themselves a good reason for picnic when they came to thank the blessing of the gods. They took all kinds of delicious food, wine and their specially made hotpot here and gathered together to enjoy the happy and relaxing life.

Beautiful Autumn Scenery of Black Dragon Pool in Lijiang

What to See in Black Dragon Pool

Now Black Dragon Pool buildings are divided into up and down two Taoist temples. Down temple “Black Dragon Palace”, which was said that built in 1454, was a type of building with one hall with two enclosed courtyards. Outer courtyard had a censer, engraved with eight diagrams, on both sides are the big dipper figure, these are the Taoism used to ward off evil spirits. In the inner courtyard patio pool there is a vivid paddled black dragon carving. Legend has it that it is the Du Dragon King in charge of Yunnan clouds and rainfalls.

Black Dragon Pool in Lijiang Black Dragon Pool in Lijiang

In front of the Black Dragon Palace is the pool. Two pools in the front and back are interlinked, separated by a stone bridge in the middle. On the left is the muddy pool, it is the area of 2600 square meters, the depth of the water up to 50 centimeters.

On the right is the clear pool, with 600 square meters, the average water depth is 7 meters and the deepest can up to 11 meters, storage capacity of 4400 cubic meters. It is Black Dragon Pool. Two pools connected to the water, and due to distinct color of water, it looks like a Taoist diagram of the universe. This is mainly because the clear pool is deep, springs come out by the pool bottom, so the water is clear; And muddy pool water is shallow and have mud into the pool after raining along the hillside, so the water is muddy. Standing on the bridge can find a rare sight: “there is no interaction of fishes between two pools, a bridge cut the water from two pools and the colors in two pools are different.”

  • Five Phoenix Tower

    Five Phoneix Tower, the original temple was built in Zhishan Fuguo Temple, 1979 moved to Black Dragon Pool. The temple was built in the Ming dynasty, originally it is Family Mu’s villa and family temple. Tusi Mu had met famous traveler and geographer Xu Xiake in the Ming dynasty in the temple.

  • Dragon Shrine

    Dragon Shrine is the main building of Black Dragon Pool, including stage, Deyue Building (Getting Moon Building), distributed on the axis line. Dragon Shrine faces west, it is a type of building with quadrangle courtyard and two patios, and there is gate, two wing-rooms and hall. The hall is single eave hipped-gable roof, three rooms wide, in the front is platform, and verandas surrounded are connected.

Legend of the Black Dragon Pool

The Black Dragon Pool takes its name from an ancient legend. It’s said that once upon a time there were ten evil dragons that terrorised the land. Lu Dongbin, one of the Eight Immortals of Chinese legends, jailed nine of the dragons in a tower, leaving only the youngest black dragon. The black dragon was forced to protect the land to keep its freedom, and still lives in the pool today.

The Black Dragon Pool is divided into two parts by a white marble bridge, and despite the water being connected, the sides maintain different colours and the fish on either side refuse to swim to the opposite pool. Additionally, Black Dragon Pool has never dried up, even during the worst droughts.

Black Dragon Pool in Lijiang

Distances from Other Scenic Area in Lijiang

  • Lijiang Old Town: about 1.6 kilometers
  • Shuhe Old Town:about 4.5 kilometers
  • Admission Fee:¥0
  • Opening Hours:7:00~21:30

Attraction Transportation

Get to Black Dragon Pool

  • take bus no. 3, 4, 6, 7, 8 or 9, and get off at Heilongtan Station.
  • 15 minutes’ walking from the Old Town of Lijiang or taking a taxi. Taxi fare is around CNY 10 to 15.

Attraction Travel Tips

Ticket for Black Dragon Pool

It is free to get into but travelers should show the receipt of Mantenance Fee for Lijiang Old Town. While it will open after 7:00 pm and close before 9:30.