Spiritual Magic in Shaxi
The Barclay's story in South China Morning Post
There are a few areas in Yunnan province that call themselves "the real Shangri-la" in an attempt to lure Western tourists. But the place that is perhaps most like James Hilton's mythical valley has shown little interest in rebranding itself - no doubt because its story is already so compelling.
Shaxi is a sun-soaked valley high in the Himalayan foothills of northwest Yunnan whose welcoming Bai people, like those in Hilton's Lost Horizon, work verdant fields until the end of their long lives. Surrounded by mountains halfway between the tourist cities of Lijiang and Dali, Shaxi's inaccessibility has kept away the tour groups - but a new highway will soon change that.