From nomads to farmers: A tale of Khatso people in Yunnan
Updated 07:42, 25-Nov-2020
Zhao Ying

Most of us have the impression that Mongols are good riders on the grasslands in the north. However, in Tonghai County, southwest China's Yunnan Province, a group of Mongols has given up the nomadic lifestyle and made a living fishing and farming. 

Xingmeng Mongol Ethnic Township is the only Mongol ethnic township in Yunnan, and home to around 5,800 Mongols. They are descendants of Mongol soldiers that Kublai Khan brought to Yunnan in the 13th century. They call themselves Khatso people, and still identify as Mongol today. 

Kui Li, who is an expert in Khatso culture, told us about the history of Mongols in Yunnan and how they cherish their culture through language, clothes, architectures and festivals, and feel nostalgia for the hometown of the past. 

About 'Go! Yunnan' series:

Yunnan Province in southwest China features spectacular natural landscapes, biodiversity and diverse ethnic groups. Among China's 56 recognized ethnic groups, 25 are found in Yunnan. The "Go! Yunnan" livestream series takes you on a tour to six cities or autonomous prefectures in the province for a glimpse of the area's food, scenery and folk customs. Stay tuned for our upcoming livestreams.

See more:

Khatso Baihua Alley: Roaming the aromatic village of Mongols

Tonghai County: South China Plateau Mongolian History and Culture Exhibition Hall

(Cover image taken by Zhao Ying)

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