Enjoying the reputation as 'the 1st Ancient Temple of Central Yunnan Province', Black Dragon Pool is lying at the foot of the Wulao Peak, Longquan Hill, where there is a pool with clear and serene water. Legends has it that a black dragon has ever hidden in the pool, hence its name.
The present Black Dragon Pool is mainly made up of two temples, the upper temple Dragon Fountain Temple and the lower temple Black Dragon Palace. The upper one, the largest Taoist temple in southern China, is hidden among ancient trees, including Thunder Deity Hall, North Pole Hall, Sanqing Hall, Jade Emperor Hall and some other halls in which the deities of Taoism are worshiped. The lower one consists of three halls and two courtyards. There are two pools in the inner courtyard, with opening in between. The stone bridge divided the two pools, built just above the middle. The water in the left pool is turbid, but the right pool is surprisingly clear even they are connected. A vivid black dragon statue stands in the pool, which is said to be the Dragon King controlling the cloud and the rain.
Not far away from the stone bridge is one of the 'Four Invaluable Treasures', the Ming dynastic tomb, which is a joint tomb of the Xue Er'wang Family. Xue Er'wang was a scholar in Kunming during late Ming to early Qing Dynasty (1644 - 1944). In 1661, Emperor Yongli of the Ming Dynasty (1368 - 1644) escaped into Burma because of being chased by the Qing Dynasty soldiers led by Wu Sangui. Xue Er'wang saw that Ming's day had been lost, so he jumped into the pool in defense of his virtue with his wife, children and servants. The descendants built a tomb for him to memory him and his faithful deeds, which is the well-known Ming tomb.
In front of the Black Dragon Pool is the other there of the 'Four Invaluable Treasures', namely the club of the Tang Dynasty (618 - 907), the cypress of the Song Dynasty (960 - 1279), the camellia of the Ming Dynasty. The main branch of the plum died of old age, but the remaining branches growing out sideways are still full of vital force and vigor, the 28-meter-high (84 feet) cypress is leaf-clothed with thick roots twined round, while the camellia blossoms in early spring, whose flowers are a more fiery scarlet. They are known as the 'Three unique trees in the Black Dragon Pool'.
In addition to these historical treasures, there are sweet-scented osmanthus, azaleas, maple, bamboo and pine in the Black Dragon Pool scenic area. Located east of it is a martyrs mausoleum of Wang De'san, Wu Cheng, Ma Dengyun, etc., covered with green pines and verdant cypresses.
Entrance Fee: CNY 20
Opening Hours: 07:30 - 17:30
What to See in Black Dragon Pool: clear and serene water, ancient temples & Ming-dynasty tombs
Best Time to Visit: May & Jun.
Transportation: Take Bus No. 9, 79, 128 or mini buses to Black Dragon Pool.