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Travel from Kunming to Lugu Lake by Flight, Train and Bus

The capital of Yunnan, Kunming is the gateway city of the province and Southwest China, with very convenient transportation and one of the busiest airports in the world. Located in Ninglang Country, the border of Yunnan and Sichuan, Lugu Lake is hidden in the mountains and approximately 550km (342 miles) away from Kunming. The area still retains the mysterious matriarchal society and is lesser-known to the world.

Previously, travelers, who would like to discover Lugu Lake all the way from Kunming, find no direct transportation between Kunming and Lugu Hu, and have to always make a transfer in Lijiang. But now, direct flights have linked the two places. 

Currently, there are two ways to travel from Kunming to Lugu Lake. Obviously, taking a direct flight is the most convenient, and cost-effective with discount tickets

Kunming-Lugu Lake Flight

The kunming to Lugu Lake flight was first launched in the late 2015 with three or four flights each week, and now with a flight every day. It takes only around one hour for passengers to travel from Kunming to Lugu Lake by air. 

Depart from: Kunming Changshui International Airport (KMG)

The airport has domestic flights from most of China’s cities and international flights from the big cities in Asia and from the biggest airports in Europe and America. Passengers can take an airport shuttle bus or taxi or reserve a private transfer from TCT to get to Changshui Airport. 

Arrive at: Ninglang Lugu Lake Airport (NLH)

The Airport of Lugu Lake was officially opened on October 12, 2015. By far it has only one air route from and to Kunming. It is 25km from Lugu Lake. Passengers can take the airport shuttle bus to Lugu Lake (Daluoshui Village) or the center of Ninglang Country.  

Kunming – Lugu Lake Flight Timetable


Flight No.




Flights Schedule

Full Price (based on USD dollars)

China Eastern




1 h 10 min

Mon., Wend., Fri., Sun.


Lucky Air




55 m

Tues., Thurs., Sat.


Note: the flight schedule of Kunming – Lugu Lake is for your reference only. Please check the ticket information including the discount tickets on the official websites or consult your TCT tour advisors directly.

Kunming to Lugu Lake by Train & Bus, Transfer in Lijiang

There is not direct bus from Kunming to Lugu Lake. It is also inconvenient to rent a charted bus, because of long distance and poor condition of some sections of roads. Therefore, you are suggested to get to Lijiang first by train, enjoy a relaxed trip in Lijiang and Baisha Town, and then take a chartered vehicle or a bus to Lugu Lake. 

Step 1, travel from Kunming to Lijiang by Train 

There are seven trains from Kunming to Lijiang every day. The travel time is about 7.5 hours to 10.5 hours. Many passengers choose to take an overnight train, as it saves more time for sightseeing and money for accommodation. Just keep in mind that you should buy the train ticket in advance, especially the soft sleeper which is very hard to get.  

Step 2, you have three ways to go from Lijiang to Lugu Lake 

Option 1, take a regular bus at Lijang Bus Terminal. The bus departs at 9:00 in the morning, and runs 4-5 hours to get to Lugu Lake. The bus fare is CNY100. 
Tips: It is a direct bus, so you won’t be allowed to stop en route and take pictures. 

Option2, take a tourist bus. Then you will have some time to take pictures for attractions.

Option 3, take a chartered car or reserve a private transfer with a travel agency.