The Essential
A town with an end-of-the-world feel about it and a former stopping-point on the Sichuan caravan route, Yongning holds an extremely popular daily market attracting all of the region's ethnic communities. It's also worth visiting the lamasery of Zhamei Geba, to the north of the town. Founded during the Yuan (1276-1368), it is still in operation today. The Buddha room, dating from the Ming dynasty (1368-1644), escaped destruction during the Cultural Revolution.