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Reisverslag South and Central China
1 februari 2014
South and Central China
Yangshuo is a great place to do some outdoor activities and it felt to do something physically demanding for a change. I did some kayaking, rockclimbing and running around here. I also paid a local fisherman to take me around on his boat and to see more of the stunning sceneries. Yangshuo is, however, one of the most popular touristic destinations in China and that attracts a lot of people selling useless overpriced junk and a lot of Restaurants. The funny thing is though that many of the Chinese tourist don’t go outside the town - except for perhaps a boat ride - and you have most of the nature for yourself. I was glad to realise that I am traveling during the right time in China. It might be a little more cold, but there are far less (Chinese) tourists everywhere. I appreciated the fresh air and the rural life around Yangshuo, which was a welcome change from all of the Chinese megacities that more or less like the same - except for the major sights of each city. Here I also booked most of my train tickets for the rest of my journey, keeping in mind that Chinese New Year (31 jan) will lead to a major domestic migration. I also booked two domestic flights, which were remarkably cheap.
After seeing the Dragon’s Backbone rice terraces, which were unfortunately not flooded because of the season, I took a flight to Kunming in Yunnan province, because every single I met that had been to Yunnan said such good things about it, that I had to see it for myself. Kunming, the spring city, was pretty okay for a megacity and I bought a cheap Chinese tablet - FNF Ifive X3 - over here (with awesome specifications) to make traveling in flights and trains more comfortable.
Because I landed in Kunming at night (1:30 AM ) I could have paid around 25 euros for a taxi and a hostel, however I decided to do some reading at the 24/7 KFC at the airport until the metro system opened up, spending my time reading. I didn’t stay for too long in Kunming, but took a (sleeper)train to Dali the night after.
Dali is a beautfiul (ancient) town in a valley, surrounded by beautiful mountains. This and the relaxing atmosphere over there has turned it into the #1 hippie location in China. Everyone is just really relaxed and I met some really nice people over there. At my hostel I saw an advertisement for a stay of a week in a monastery, veg food included, no electricity, no hot showers and either free Kung Fu or Tai Chi lessions. I would have loved to stay here for a week but unfortunately I had booked all of tickets already. After Dali I spent a night in Lijiang, which was another beautiful town. The morning after I took a plane to Chengdu. I would have loved to spend some more time in Yunnan and perhaps go to the Tiger Leaping Gorge as well, perhaps next time I’m here in China.
In Chengdu I had a good hotpot, it was really mouth-numbing spicy and I was glad to see that all of my months of spicyness-tolerance training had paid off. After the dinner I couldn’t feel much of my tongue anymore, except for a weird tingling feeling. At this point I was going out almost every night, so I didn’t really do that much except for partying. Traditionally the night before I leave I tend to go out one more time to celebrate the awesome time I have had over there. This usually results in traveling hungover, but everytime I had been all right, until the day I was supposed to take a train to Chongqing. I woke up and checked my phone after I was worried by some sun-rays shining into the dorm past the curtains- my train was supposed to leave at 9. I found out it was 10 already and was kind of worried, because there was a probability that obtaining another train ticket would be impossible because of the New Year. Fortunately I managed to get another one.
In the hostel in Chongqing I had another hotpot and actually ate some dried blood slices. I didn’t do to much over there, because there wasn’t that much to do. It is a really foggy city and it was kind of cool to walk past the big cruise boats in the Yangtze river.
From here I took a long train ride to Xi’ an. I have been here for one night now and today I visited the Terra Cotta Warriors, which was an amazing sight. I’m looking forward to the following days, unfortunately my last 10 days in China. If I have another opportunity I think I will return to this beautiful country. Even though I don’t want to leave China, I have a feeling Japan is going to be awesome as well and that there will be a lot to do.
Signing out from Xi’an, much greetings and Happy (Chinese) New Year,
3 februari 2014 13:33 | Door: Marina from Xian
Was really nice to meet you in Xian yesterday.
I'm now waiting for your article on the city :D hope the end of your travelling goes well in China.
Enjoy every moment, fill your head up with many memories and maybe see you in Thailand !