7 Best Restaurants in Dali, Southwestern China

Bird Bar


For a taste of one of Yunnan's major cash crops, head to the Bird Bar, which grows, roasts and grinds its own coffee beans. The owner's love for antique buildings clearly shines through in the coffeehouse's cozy, old-fashioned interior.

Café de Jack


A longtime favorite specializing in Western and Chinese classics as well as some local Bai specialties, Café de Jack serves good breakfast, lunch, and dinner—and the strongest cup of coffee in Yunnan. All three floors are a bit different: the first floor feels like a bar, the second floor is more like a restaurant, and the rooftop is a perfect place to kick back with a beer. Catch up with the rest of the world via computer terminals or Wi-Fi.

Duyichu Fanzhuang


Hidden inside a leaning shack, this little dumpling palace wraps the best jiaozi in Dali and the surrounding region. Other dishes are on offer, depending on what's available in the local markets. The menus have been kindly translated into English by expat regulars, but they don't mention the selection of splendid house-made liquor. The owners both hail from China's freezing northeastern reaches.

Renmin Lu, Dali, Yunnan, 671000, China
No phone
Known For
  • cozy
  • small bites
  • variety of dumplings
Restaurants Details
Rate Includes: No credit cards

Recommended Fodor's Video

The Bakery No. 88


The dessert counter here has some of Dali's best cakes, which can be enjoyed with a coffee and a book on the second floor if you're after somewhere quiet. It's one of the best places in town for good Western food and take-away stuffed baguettes.

The Sweet Tooth


Dali's expat community indulges in its love of pastries at this low-profile little eatery. Surprisingly enough, it also cooks up some of the best Mexican food in town. The prices are more than reasonable, but the seating is limited.

52 Bo'ai Lu, Dali, Yunnan, 671003, China
Known For
  • blueberry cheesecake
  • coffee
  • excellent savory mains

Waffle Wizard


Here you'll find authentic Belgian waffles topped with whipped cream, ice cream, or just a dusting of powdered sugar. If you don't have a sweet tooth, sip a cold Belgian ale while you watch the people stroll past. It's easy to miss, as this place is no more than a cutaway in the street with some chairs out front. The Wi-Fi is a plus.

Corner of Honglongjing Lu and Fuxing Lu, Dali, Yunnan, 671003, China
Known For
  • sugary treats
  • English-speaking staff
  • cozy

Xinghua Cun


In business for decades, Xinghua Cun is a no-nonsense Chinese restaurant with the usual revolving-top tables and a counter filled with all kinds of homemade liquor. If you look past the spartan decor, you'll notice what this place does best: tasty Yunnanese and local Bai dishes, all served with a smile. The menus are in Chinglish, but ordering is easily done by pointing at pictures.

165 Ye'er Lu, Dali, Yunnan, 671003, China
Known For
  • soups
  • cultural diversity
  • cozy