Thursday, October 1, 2009

Lijiang ancient town---Yunan province

Street-by-street: LIjiang

located in a picturesque valley with a stunning mountain backdrop , Lijiang's ancient towan,Dayan, is a labyrinth of cobbled alleys lined with wooden houses ,cafes,and the workshops of traditional craftmen.Home to the Naxi minority people ,Dayan is one of the most pleasent urban scenes in China.


You can fly there or take a bus from kunming to Dali then Lijiang. I took a bus trip to there which was about a 8 hours trip on the bus. You can appriciate the sceneries along the way to Lijiang, which is quiet good. and in Lijiang you donr have to worry about accomodation as there are thhousands of inns in the old town, and very cheap .The average price is about 20-100 chinese yuan. but if you go there during some important chinese festivals, the prices would be doubled or trippled. So many hikers or bagpackers go there avoiding the festivals and stay there for one week or one month .Just enjoying the peaceful lifestyle there.

The old town is cobweb of narrow cobbled alleyways,criss-crossed with canals,and free of traffic. Its extremely pretty and very popular. If you want to escape the crowds head off into the alleys away from the major tourists routes ,where local people still live.

The picture on the left is the birdscan view of the whole old town which i took it in the morning. It looks fantistic and i enjoyed the cozy and fresh air .

The Naxi minority, numbering about 278,000, live in Sichuan and Yunnan, With Lijiang as their spiritual capital. Descended from Tibetan nomads , the Naxi lived until recently in matriarchal families , though local rulers were always male.There are strong matriarchal influence throughout Naxi sociaty and in particular in the Naxi language. For example, Nouns become superlative when the word "famale" is added and diminutive with the addition on "male". A "female stone," therefor , is a boulder; a "male stone" a pebble. The script, Called Dongba, consists of about 1,400 pictograms and is the only hieroglyphic writing system still in use. The Naxi religion, also called Dongba, is polytheistic, and mixes elements of Daoism and Tibetan lamaism with older animist beliefs. The main Naxi deity is Sanduo, a protector war god deppicted twice a year with the sacrifice of a goat and, of course, much singing and dancing.

Anyhow thats something about this beautiful old town and the people here. it is so nice that I didnt want to go anywhere else . You can just live a simple life there like that .

I stayed in the town for a few days and went to visit the Jade snow mountain there , had a one day mule riding trip which is good. well there is another tiny little old towns just about 10km away from the major old town which is facinating too, extremely clear water and creek , there are always many coffee shops and retaurants along the streets., plenty of food and all kinds of gifts shops. Anyhow if you want to go there I suggest you leaving yourself a few more days for Lijiang.

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Kunming---Yunnan province

The capital city of Yunnan province, southwest of China ,Kunming rests at 6500 feet (2000m) above sea level. Its clement weather and floral wealth have earned it the nickname "city of Eternal Spring" .An ancent city that first came to prominence as part of the Nanzhao Kingdom.

Well this city was my second stop after i had stayed in Guilin for a few days . I took train from Guilin to Kunming which was not pleasent at all. i had to sit in the seat for almost 18 hours and it was impossible to fall aleep for me like that. And it was the end of September ,chinese national day was coming very soon made the traffic very crowded. Anyway if you had time like me you can try to take train ,its a different experience for me. The good thing is that i met a group of college students on the train. they can speak English relatively well , so it was not that boring then.

The hotel which I stayed in Kunming was not nice ,I can not remember the name of the hotel now but I remember it is a 4-stared hotel which is about 500 meters away from the rail way station. Anyhow I had to rest a long time after the tiring train trip . The second day i went to visit the international village and the chinese minority village as you can see the pictures below. both of them are nice and both of them are not far away from the city. The stone forest is quite famous in Yunnan province and many tourists go there which is about 100 Kms from Kunming city. I didnt go there because its just a single scenery spot and nothing around, kind of waste. So Kunming was just one of my transit stops. My major destination was Lijiang ancient city whick i loved very much and always want to go back to visit it again.








the international village

the minority village

Yunnan province is located along China's south-west frontier , offers an unmatched diversity of landscape, climate and people. and there are about 26 minorities living in this province which makes this province very attractive culturely and historically.
If i had another chance to visit Yunnan province , I think I would like to go to Xishuangbannan ,it is subtropical area ,in climate and culture it feels a part of southeat Asia. much of the area is primeval rainforest, the last left in the ocuntry.

Guilin---Guangxi province

I took a trip to China from Guilin to Yunnan province, Sichuan province and then Chongqing, shanghai, Hangzhou for a month September 2008. It was a wonderful trip and i have seen some fantistic seneries and historical places.
First of all I am going to share the first stop with my dear friends here in Guilin , the capital city of Guangxi province China .
I took plane form Gold Coast to KLL , stayed one night in KLL and then arrived in Guilin city next day. Flied with Airasia with a resonable price . The hotel which i stayed name is Education hotel ,it is quite nice and not expensive at all. I like to spned money on the trip instead of spending on accommondation. But there are thousands of hotels in China you can find in every city which are cheap and clean and everything equiped. breaksfast ,telephone, internet......The one I like most is the chain hotel---Homeinns .

Well cut the crap, after I checked in and had a quick shower ,I went out for a walk in the city to have a look around.


this is one of the streets i walked there ,quite clean

nice pagodas in the city

Guilin is renowned for its Karst peaks, most of them are under 650 feets (198m). Dotted throught the city ,they are particularly concentrated along the Li river to the south of the town. Guilin dates back to the Qin era , and by the 6th century AD, its hills were already inspiring poets.Under the Ming, it emerged as a provincial capital. a parks enclosing some fine peaks and limestone caves.

Guilin means "Osmanthus forest" , and has an avenue of these sweet-scented trees along the riveside Binjiang RD.

As you can see the pictures below, I took a river cruise next day from Guilin to Yangshuo which is a small highway town at the end of the Li river Cruise. Yangshuo is surrounded by some spectacular karst hills interspersed with green paddy fields.








As you can see there are many karst peaks along the river
and the river cruise is quite pleasent

the day after the river cruise I went to visit the zoo and limestone caves around the city which is quite nice too. Its cheap to take taxies in the city and most of the taxi drivers are travel guides too. They usually offer themselves to you as your travel guides and you can nigotiate the price with them.

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

About my trips

hello friends

I have just started this blog to show my trips around the world . i have been to some wonderful places which i want to share my experiences with all my dearest friends.

Meanwhile I paint too, I do oilpainitng and most of my paintings are related to my travels as you can see them on my other blog which is http://benjaminrowan2911.blogspot.com . dont forget visiting my blog and welcome to commmunicate with me .

all my love

Ben