10 Jun China: Chendu, Lang Zong, Pandas and Pollution

China Part TWO
May 2009
Chengdu and the Pandas
We flew from SW China to Chengdu and were shocked that it is SO smoggy it hurts to breathe. I read that more than 1/3 of the air pollution affecting CALIFORNIA originates in CHINA! China is more than 4000 miles from Ca. The World Bank estimates that 700,000 people die each year from the air in China (San Francisco has 700,000 people!!) from LOST ON PLANET CHINA by Troost.
We did love the PANDA Research and Breeding Area. We saw about 20 pandas of all ages and sizes. Some were playing, some were eating. We saw RED PANDAS! They were all AMAZING! We took so much video and photo!! I can’t wait to upload our photos to share.

Lang Zhong
Ancient City that is still a real place!

Our favorite place in China so far is Lang Zhong (about a 6 hour bus ride from Chengdu). It is a real ancient city. It is not like Lijiang and Dali with so many tour groups and no real homes only shops. There are real people. We went twice to the tailor and had a great gesturing conversation. We also ate twice at the noodle shop. We watched the chef MAKE the noodles. It was so great that we videotaped him. We took photos of him and he took photos of US eating at his shop. We stayed in a 1000 year old hotel and communicated with the marketing director thru Google Translator!! It is a GREAT place to visit! Put it on your list!!

Three Gorges and Yangshou
Cruise along the Gorges
We were briefly in Chongqing, a metropolis of THIRTY-EIGHT MILLION PEOPLE! Yep you never heard of it and there are 30million people! There are over 90 cities in China with over 1 million people. China is just BIG! We had a great 3 day cruise on the Yangtze River to see the Three Gorges. It must have been more awesome before the Dam raised the water 100m but it is still incredible. It is still so HUGE!

We also sailed from Guillin to Yangshou on a bamboo boat to see the gorgeous and towering Karst formations! There is so much beautiful scenery to see in China AND we even had BLUE SKY!

More of China May 4-20
Seeing more of China: the good, the bad and the cute! Traveling in China is great and full of surprises.
We have seen so much and can’t wait to see more of China. It is amazing to take a 12 hour night train and realize that on the map you have not moved too far! It is such a BIG country. There are 30 beds in ONE car in hard sleeper on the night train! I felt that we climbed 90 feet up to the TOP bunk–third from the ground.
We have been lucky to meet and travel with so many great new friends. We can now even speak a few words of Chinese that they actually understand.

More soon!Lisa and George

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Lisa Niver

Lisa Niver is a travel expert, writer, artist, entrepreneur, and on-camera host who has explored over 95 countries. Niver has established a following through her written and video content, garnering nearly one million video views on YouTube, Amazon Fire Tv, Amazon Short Video and Roku. Also the founder of a top 100 travel blog, We Said Go Travel, she has created eleven international travel writing competitions and published nearly 2000 writers from 75 countries. Lisa’s approach blends her world-class travels in an entertaining and educational style. She has contributed to USA Today, Wharton Business Magazine, Yahoo Travel, The Huffington Post, the Jewish Journal, Sheknows and National Geographic, among others. Niver is verified on Twitter and was listed by Klout as the #1 Expert in Travel Writing. She was a 2012 nominee for the Presidential Award for Excellence in Math and Science Teaching and a 2014 nominee for the Charles Bronfman Prize.

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