How to get there
The lowest round-trip air fare between Boston and Kunming, China, at press time was $2,514 on Air China International. Take a domestic flight to Dali.
Where to stay
Jim's Peace Guesthouse
Jim's is where many foreigners stay, as the thoroughly likable owner is fluent in English. Rooms about $10 a night.
Tibetan Cafe and Guesthouse
Another guesthouse popular with foreigners. Spartan-but-decent rooms for about $10.
96 Yu'Er Lu
Upscale but very attractive, with traditional Chinese-style courtyards and decor. As with most hotels in China, room prices vary and depend mostly on what you negotiate. About $30 would be reasonable.
Where to eat
Jim's Peace Cafe
Jim scores top marks for his food. The menu is small, but the quality top-notch. Especially good is the ''Tibetan goulash," a stew of vegetables and yak beef.A meal is likely to be less than $3.
Café du Jack
Western food, from burgers to pasta. Sit upstairs as service downstairs is atrocious. Meals $3-$4.
Across the street from Café du Jack, Marley's -- named for the reggae singer -- also serves up good-quality Western food. Meals $3-$4.