Shangri-La, also known as Zhongdian, is home of the old town which is nearest to the Tibetan Autonomous Prefecture. Despite a significant portion of the old town being destroyed by a fire at the beginning of 2014, it remains under construction and some of the cobblestone alleyways remain. Shangri-La still sees a decent amount of visitors every year. The town of Zhongdian is a mix of Chinese Han and Tibetan people. The old town is decorated with cobblestone roads, shops and quaint restaurants for a mix of Western and Chinese tastes. There’s plenty of opportunity for yak meat and hot pot, as well as pastries and delicious coffee.
In the main square of the old town a traditional nightly dance occurs with the locals. Visitors are always allowed to join and the choreography lasts for approximately an hour.