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.