A new opening, April 14

14 Apr 2014

For hundreds of years the remote Derung ethnic group, the country’s smallest, was cut off from the outside world every year from October to April by heavy snow. Those days of isolation are coming to an end. A four-year project to build a tunnel connecting them to the county seat of Gongshan in Yunnan is coming to fruition. The 6.88-kilometre-long tunnel will cut the travelling time from six hours to just two. The mountainous area is also famous for the facial tattoos of its women folk, who were said to have used them to look ugly to bandits who used to prey on the region. Photographers from Xinhua, Imaginechina and China Foto Press captured a rapidly changing way of life.