10 Jun 2010 South West China
South West China with Shane
We flew from Bangkok to Kunming, China. I loved the STONE FOREST! It is a Karst forest. We have seen Karst formations in almost EVERY country on this trip.
Staying at Sean’s guest house, we woke up to climb for 5 hours in elevation. We went from 1900 to 2500m and the first hour was STRAIGHT UP! It was worth it to see the views and the water below. We walked across a waterfall with FREEZING water! This is a don’t miss stop in SW China! We saw many families doing the hiking together. Shangri-La
Zhong Dian or Gyeltang
Tibet is EVERYWHERE as we learned from a Hungarian man who lives in the USA but has a farm in Bolivia. He told us the Chinese name of Zhong Dian was changed to Shangri-la to increase tourism. The Tibetan name is Gyeltang. We were freezing there so we added gloves and coats to our backpacks and went off to the 300 year old monastery. Shane had seen Potala Palace in Lhasa 2 years ago and told us this was similar. We loved it! Due to many regulations, we decided not to go to Lhasa, Tibet on this trip BUT we will go soon. Tibetan Culture is so colorful and we loved to see the prayer flags on the chorten on the mountains.
Traveling in China is really VERY different than South East Asia. The trail is a bit more faint. BUT we can manage with some gestures and a book of pictures to order food and to buy our train tickets!!
It was 55degrees in Shangri-La so we accomplished our mission to get our of the heat of the South!! We have had limited internet access and have not uploaded our photos but look for them SOON!
We go everywhere with our “bible” the Lonely Planet China!