The Xishuangbanna Dai Autonomous Prefecture is situated in the southern-most tip of Yunnan Province, and is contiguous to Burma and Laos. It is 733 km. from Kunming. With a total area of 19,185 square km., it has a population of 820,000 people, including the Dai, Hani, Lahu, Bulang, Jinuo, Yao, Yi, and some other nationalities. The population of the Dai people accounts for 34.9% of the total. The composition of the population is like this: the Dai people, the peoples of other minority nationalities and the Han people each occupy one third of the total population respectively. Some of the minority nationalities living on this side of the national boundary line belong to the same nationalities as the people living on the other side of the boundary line. They live harmoniously together, and are on very friendly terms, often coming and going across the boundary line in their daily activities. The prefecture seat is in Jinghong County (known as Yunjinghong among the Dai people).
In the Dai language, "Xi" means ten, "shuang" two, "Ban" one thousand, and "Na" paddy fields. Xishuangbanna therefore means "Twelve districts of one thousand mu of paddy fields each". It is the general name given to twelve administrative bodies under twelve chieftains in the old days. Yunjinghong is a term in the Dai language, meaning "The Daybreak City". The Dai calendar started from 638 AD. So, as for the Dai calendar, 2000 is 1362.