The Baishui terrace is situated in
Sanba Township 101 kilometers southeast of Zhongdian
County seat. The terrace is 3 sq. kilometers in area.
It is a karst formation of a layer of white deposits
of calcium carbonate crystallized in spring water. It
was also one of the places where the Dongba was originated.
In Baidi village near the terrace one can still experience
the old Naxi ethnic life-style.
Terraces like those of Baishui are
one of nature's most remarkable creations. The formations
vaguely resemble a frozen cascading series of short
waterfalls - and the wet terrace walls have a white
jade like glow. The half circular pools of water that
fill the shallow basins behind the terrace walls lend
a serene visual touch.
gradually formed over hundreds of thousands of years.
Running spring water rich in bicarbonate calcium left
behind the calcium sediment that built the terrace walls
and basins molecule by molecule.
Calcium is white, but the terraces
of Baishui are creamy white and sometimes streaked yellowish
brown. Reason: The flowing spring water deposited other
dissolved minerals besides the calcium.
The Baishui Terrace runs 130 meters down
its mountain slope and extends some 150 meters at its broadest point.