The Hani and Yi people are the creators of the monumental rice terraced mountains which have made Yuanyang famous.
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Yuanyang County (元阳县) is located in Honghe Prefecture in southeastern Yunnan province, along the Honghe (Red River). The prefecture is predominantly populated by a number of ethnic minorities such as Yizu, Hani, Dai from the valleys, Miao and Zhuang. It is a popular destination with photographers due to the vast areas of nearby mountains which have been cultivated into terraced rice paddies for at least the past 1300 years by the Hani people. The Hani and Yi, the creators of the monumental rice terraced mountains which have made Yuanyang famous, are the original inhabitants of these regions. Both their languages belong to the Tibeto-Burman group.
Back in 2002, we did a documentary (in Italian, sorry!) about Yunnan and its ethnic minorities
Photos: Matteo Damiani
Video: Dominique Musorrafiti, Matteo Damiani