Blogs from Yunnan, China, Asia - page 9


Asia » China » Yunnan » Yuanyang November 13th 2012

Apologies that the flurry of blogs I promised a few entries ago didn't materialise. Despite many hours on the road, I just never got round to doing my blog homework. It hasn't helped that most bus rides have been more like riding a Big Dipper. Right, where were we up to? We were leaving Yangshuo for Kunming. The majority of the journey was made up by 17 hours on a night train from Guilin. Guilin North station is about the most dreary place known to mankind, so it wasn't a great place to arrive early for a then delayed train. Once on the train, Sophie and I exchanged nervous glances when we discovered we would be sharing the cabin with a new-born baby (and its mother thankfully). ... read more
My View
Tai Chi in Xinjie

Asia » China » Yunnan » Yuanyang November 13th 2012

The time has come and after 5 weeks we have reached the end of our time in China! For our last stop on our adventure here, we chose to head to the Yuanyang rice terraces in South Yunnan, just a few hours from the Vietnam border. Although we had seen great rice terraces a few weeks ago in Guilin, we had heard that Yuanyang was extra special and somewhere we should not miss. Plus it was on the way to Hekou, the town on the Chinese side of the border crossing to 'Nam that we needed to leave from, so a handy stop over. The bus was supposed to take 6 hours from Kunming to Xinjie, the old town of Yuanyang and the starting point of the rice terraces, but as usual took longer and after ... read more
Incredible rice terraces at sunrise
Great views

Asia » China » Yunnan » Kunming November 10th 2012

When travelling, you always meet other travellers who have been to the place you are planning on going to next, and what they tell you about that place can either make you really look forward to it or wish you were giving it a miss, depending on what they experienced there. It’s great to hear other people’s stories about places you are about to visit, as they can be a good source of information as well as get you excited for that place, but occasionally what you hear can be misleading – Kunming is the perfect example of this. We had been planning on going to Kunming from Lijiang for ages; it was always in our China itinerary as it was on the way down to the rice terraces we wanted to see, just for a ... read more
In French Cafe
Local Tai-Chi in Park
Seagull feeding

Asia » China » Yunnan » Tiger Leaping Gorge November 8th 2012

The Yunnan province was to be the last province in China we would visit but for the longest amount of time and the one which we had heard so many great things about, so our expectations for the area were high. Our first stop was the old Naxi town of Lijiang, where we arrived after a quick flight from Chengdu. LiJiang had been home to the 300,000 odd Naxi minority for the last 1,400yrs and they originally decended from the Tibetian Qiang tribes. What we found so strange and endearing about this minority (especially Vic’s) is that the women rule the roost in every way, I mean they become the sole owner of any child they produce and if the decide to kick the man out they retain all property and rights. We had wanted to ... read more
Sunrise over the mountains
Never get tired of this view
Sun breaking through

Asia » China » Yunnan » Kunming October 26th 2012

Day 14 Kunming Last Day This is the last day in China and we are going home at 11.30pm via Seoul in S Korea. Yesterday we went to the Golden Temple in the north of the city on a small hill where the air is less polluted. The small temple is all copper and used 250 tonnes in its construction. At the top of the hill is a large bell which is 400 years old and a small replica which visitors can ring for 20p by striking it with a big wooden fish on a rope. Alongside the temple are two small trees dating back to the mid 1600's which are still living but rather fragile looking. The temple has a Buddha which is an image of the Chinese General who,opened the gates of Yunnan in ... read more
Bags of Maize


Asia » China » Yunnan » Kunming October 25th 2012

Day13 Kunming City Lu Bao Hua (Michael), our local guide has been bitten by the cycling bug so Jeff and myself went with him to visit a couple of bike shops in Kunming. You would not believe it but there are hardly any bike shops to choose from, maybe four or five in a city of 6000 people. The first shop had mostly hybrids and blunderbusses and only one with drop handlebars. The second shop was a GIANT retailer and had mostly hybrids and Mountain Bikes and quite a few with drops. However, they were for small Chinese riders and Michael is a 6' person and we struggled to find him one. The gears were also rather high for what he wanted so changes needed to be made. The staff were apathetic at best and did ... read more

Asia » China » Yunnan » Lijiang October 24th 2012

Day 12 Lazy day in Lijiang Today was spent lazing around the Old City of Lijiang after doing the final packing of the bike and getting Roger and Elaine's bikes out of storage ready for despatch to Kunming this afternoon. It was good to be on the streets early before the mass hoards of tourists are out in force. I bought a few small gifts for granddaughters in the many shops offering anything and everything at double the price of the country markets. We bumped into a retired couple from England who set off three months ago in St Petersburg and followed the silk road down through Kazakhstan until they arrived here. They are due to go down to Vietnam and Laos before returning home in another month. We have had umpteen cups of coffee and ... read more
Stream in Lijiang
The well

Asia » China » Yunnan » Lijiang October 23rd 2012

Day11 Yulong Snowy Mountain is 5600m tall and sits at the opposite side of the Tiger Leaping Gorge to the Haba Snowy Mountain! Which is 5400m. It looms large on the landscape and is often capped with cloud as it was this morning. The stay in Daju was very pleasant with the new rooms now in operation. It is still a little basic with only two rooms having shower and toilet, plus one shower and one toilet out in the yard. Luckily by pure chance we had the room with the shower and toilet, the down side was we had to share and had middle of night invasions. Sitting out in the vines for meals was very pleasant and after noodles we were off at 8am across the plain to the foot of the mountain, first ... read more
Lunch stop

Asia » China » Yunnan » Tiger Leaping Gorge October 22nd 2012

Tiger Leaping Gorge, the Jewel of Yunnan. The gorge is about 40k in length but seems much longer when it is cycled since it is up and down all the way with some quite steep hills demanding low gears. The middle of the Gorge is where the rock stands in the centre of the Yangtze surrounded by a ferocious current of water boiling up everywhere and is the rock onto which it is suggested that a tiger once used as a stepping stone to escape across the river. There are 400 steps down to the edge of the river but you can be taken down by some tuffies in a Sedan Chair if you are a bit tired, lazy or rich. At this point you can take photos along with a mass of other Chinese tourists, ... read more
Daju guest house

Asia » China » Yunnan » Tiger Leaping Gorge October 21st 2012

Day 9 Qiaotou in the Gorge Qiaotou is a small dirty town at the foot of the Tiger Leaping Gorge on the route up to Tibet and Shangri La. This is on the Road 214, which has always been a major trade route between China and Tibet, trading tea to the North and horses to the South. Now it is large red 8 wheeler lorries, driven by lunatic young Tibetans who sit on their air horns, bringing Yak meat South and all manner of goods North. We are in the Yixiang Hotel which seems just a little bit better than when I was here last with a clean, newly decorated room but with a wardrobe door leant against a wall. The journey out of Lijiang was a bit dusty and busy with a large hill to ... read more

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