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Lijiang has a mild climate all year-round and a fertile landscape that produces an abundance of agricultural products, many of which serve as delicious ingredients for the local cuisine. Lijiang is home to people from 11 different ethnic groups, the largest number of which are Naxi and Tibetan.

The cuisine of Lijiang is a delicious blend of foods and flavors of all the local ethnic cultures, dominated by the Naxi people, with influences from the neighboring regions of the Han Chinese and the Tibetans. Some of the most popular foods of Lijiang are the snacks of Dim Sum, many of which can be found on the streets of Lijiang City.

Jidou Liangfen, a kind of jelly made from chick pea, is a favorite delicacy of Lijiang to sample when you are there. Another Lijiang specialty is Baba, a kind of spicy fried potato cake. Also popular is Bingfenliangxiao, a delicious dessert, and butter tea. And don't forget to try the famous Cross Bridge Noodles.

Lijiang has many wonderful restaurants where these foods can be tasted. One of the best places to find good local restaurants is on Square Street. In the Old Town, the Hua Hua Shen Restaurant, located at Fuhui Road in the New District is highly recommended for experiencing good local Naxi cuisine.

Also of note is the Old Town Beef Restaurant (also known as Ha's Beef Restaurant), which serves Muslim cuisine. It is located on Xueshan Middle Road. There are also many Western style restaurants in Lijiang, bringing their own local twist to the flavors of the West.