Saturday, February 27, 2010

15/02/2010 - Yunnan, The Province of Mountains, Part 3.2

After lunch at the restaurant in the Dali University, we proceeded to our next destination, Yan Jia Da Yuan (严家大院). It's a mansion that was built in 1920's and owned by Yan's family, and later became the property of the Dali government and opened to the public.

The big white wall is used to reflect the light of the Sun into the houses, it's known as Zhao Bi (照壁)

The whole mansion is connected, it means that once one went in the mansion, he/she can access to any room in the mansion


Another Zhao Bi in the mansion

There's a presentation in the hall of the mansion regarding some traditions of Bai Zu including some dance performance and also the wedding ceremony of Bai Zu. We were treated with teas from the Bai Zu as well, which they called it Bai Zu San Dao Cha (白族三道茶), which means the 3 cups of tea of Bai Zu.

The first cup of tea is bitter, it represents that life was bitter in the beginning

Following by sweet tea, it means that life will be better after all the bitterness (苦尽甘来)

And the last cup of tea is Hui Wei Cha (回味茶), which means when one look back at their life with bitterness and sweetness, that's life

The wedding ceremony of Bai Zu, the bride will wear the sunglasses as she will cry during the ceremony, which is a must. Later, the bride will be pinch during the ceremony, the more she get pinched the better it is


The main entrance of the Yan Jia Da Yuan

An ancient looking door while on my way back to the bus

After visited the Yan Jia Da Yuan, we started our long long journey to Li Jiang (丽江) which took us 2 hours. While on the way to Li Jiang, I saw plenty of Canola Flowers' farms, and the Canola Flowers are blooming, how I hope I can go down from the bus to have some shot of the Canola Flowers' farms.

When we reached Li Jiang, it was around 7:00 pm, so the bus dropped us to our hotel first to drop our luggage back to our rooms and have our dinner. We were having Dim Sum (点心) for our dinner. There were 2 local delicacies which I have forgotten the name, though they have some funny name.



After dinner, we went to visit The Old Town of Li Jiang (丽江古城), it's one of the UNESCO World Heritage Site.





The source of water in the river of the town was from the Jade Dragon Snow Mountain, which is very clean and cold

There're quite a number of shops selling silver ornaments, but Jacky told us not to simply buy silver ornaments from the shops, as some of them are not selling ornaments that are made from pure silver



After an hour plus in the town, we headed back to our hotel to rest, as we are going to wake up very early in the morning next day to go to the Jade Dragon Snow Mountain, which to me, is the best tourist spot in this trip.

Monday, February 22, 2010

15/02/2010 - Yunnan, The Province of Mountains, Part 3.1

Day 3 - Another morning that I have to wake up very early, before the Sun risen. It's cold and dark outside. After a nice warm bath in the freezing morning and pack up the stuff, me and my family just take a ride on the electric car to go to the main building from our accommodation. Some simple buffet breakfast have been served by the hotel, and I enjoy the warm green tea so much in a cold morning like this.

While waiting for the tour group to depart, I just went outside in hope to snap some nice photos. Unfortunately, I was unable to find myself anything that's interesting to shoot, so I just keep my camera back to the backpack and wait for the tour group to depart.

The first destination of the day is the Dali (大理) Tian Long Ba Bu Studio (天龙八部影视城), it's the place where they shoot the Chinese series Tian Long Ba Bu, it's originate from the novel written by Jin Yong - Demi-Gods and Semi-Devils. The studio cost 1 billion RMB to built. After finish shooting of the series, it has been open to the public to visit. We reached there at 9:00 am in order to watch the gate opening presentation.

The show begins with the soldiers marching out from the castle

The soldiers queue up and waiting for the Emperor to come out

After the soldiers split up, the palace entertainers performed some dance before the Emperor and the Empress came out

After the entertainers finished their dance, the Emperor and Empress came out to welcome the guests, then we're allowed to go into the studio. In the studio, I saw many people are gathering outside a house, for the Emperor will find a husband for his daughter through an activity where the daughter will throw a ribbon made of silk, and the man who caught it will be chosen as the husband.

The Princess was out from her room to the balcony to throw the silk ribbon

A guy had caught the ribbon and has been chosen to be the husband of the Princess. While the Emperor's son-in-law was changing his cloth, the Emperor was making announcement

The Emperor and his new son-in-law, seems like the son-in-law is older than the Emperor

After that we proceed to the center stage, there was a Lion Dance performance over there.

The Lion Dance performers were trying to jump across over a large gap to reach the other stilts

Almost there~

Landed safely, bravo!

After that, I just hang around to search for something interesting.


People here, people there, full of people everywhere

A resting place, many tourists are having a drinks and some snacks over there

Back to the ancient days

A horse-drawn carriage drove past me

A yak (牦牛). Tourists have to pay 10RMB in order to ride on the yak for photo shooting

After spending one hour in the studio, we have to go back to our tour bus to the next destination. This is the entrance of the studio

Next destination was the Dali ancient town, it was built during the Ming dynasty.


The South gate of the Dali ancient town

An ancient Chinese building in the ancient town of Dali

Yang Ren Jie (洋人街) aka Westerners Street in English, the main reason for having this street is because there are many Westerners that like to come to the Dali ancient town. Thus, this street was named as Westerners Street, in order to attracts more Westerners

Luan Le (乱了), it means Confused or Mess Up. The name of the shop is interesting, and it's selling clothes

The house of Bai Zu (白族), the minority in China while majority in Dali. Mostly their houses are painted in white

The fireworks seller, I have never seen so much fireworks being sold openly in my life (it's prohibited in Malaysia)

Japanese Camellia, aka Cha Hua (茶花) in China. Can be seen everywhere in the town

Another gate in the town

The are 18 strange things in Yunnan, and 2 of them are Shao Er Kuai (烧饵快) which is baked rice cake and Kao Ru Shan (烤乳扇), which is a thin piece of cake that was made from milk and toasted with charcoal. There're 3 flavors for Shao Er Kuai, which is salty, sweet or spicy; I have chosen the salty flavor, which is quite nice. While the Kao Ru Shan taste a bit like cheese

Before went back to the bus, I saw this tree planted on the wall of the town

After spending an hour in the ancient town of Dali, it's time for us to have our lunch. The venue for lunch is kinda unique, as we're having our lunch in a restaurant located within the only university in Dali, and the restaurant is located on a hill.

The restaurant on the hill in the university of Dali

Some dishes we have for our lunch:

Pork with Chinese pickles

Specialty - Tea Leaf that was wrapped with flour and deep fried

Chicken soup



BBQ Pork

Steam cooked freshwater fish, I don't really like it, as there're too many bones for this fish

After I finished my lunch, I went to a small garden besides the restaurant for a walk.

There are some gooses in the garden