Day 7 – Lijiang
“All good things must come to an end.” My time in China was almost to an end and that was when I felt closer to the family I had been tagging along for last 2 days. The tour in Lijiang was fairly small compared to Shangri-La. There were one new family, two twin brothers, the family I had been tagging along, and me. Our first stop was at the Dongba Valley Cultural village but after seeing the amazing view of the snow mountains, I just wanted to go to the snow mountain.
Dongba Valley Cultural village is an active museum and it is located in a park. I got to see a glimpse of the Naxi culture there but I wish I could understand what was going on. At one point, the tour guide from the cultural village told us to go around a ladder which steps are made with sharp knives. As people were going around, there were told to say something which sounded like some kind of chantings so I stepped aside and just observed. As people were going around and chanting, a barefooted Naxi man climbed the steps of the ladder stepping on those sharp knives.
After that, another man put a metal plate in a furnace for a few minutes, took it out, and put it on his tongue. It made me cringe and couldn’t tell they were professional stuntmen or performing black magic.
After that, we went to the Jade Dragon Snow Mountain. The Naxi people take pride in Jade Dragon snow mountain (Mt. Yulong in Chinese) because many had reached to the peak of Mt. Everest, the Earth’s highest mountain, but only one could make it to the peak of Mt. Yulong and that shows Mt. Yulong is their sacred mountain. From the base, we took a 10-minute cable car ride to visit the Spruce Meadow which is at an altitude of 3200m.
There is a wooden walk way around the meadow and I totally enjoyed the fresh air and quietness around the meadow area. There were yaks, horses, and black sheep in the field. I couldn’t see the clear view of the mountain peak because it was very foggy but still it was a breathtaking view and there was a sense of serenity around the meadow.
After coming down to the base, we saw the White River Terraces. But the water is almost like blue and one of the guys from the tour said it was artificial. But it was indeed beautiful and it’s a river fed by snowmelt from the mountain’s glacier.
After lunch, we saw the impression of Lijiang. It is an outdoor cultural show which takes place at the foot of Mt. Yulong. Usually I easily get bored with those cultural shows. This one was very impressive and grand. There were about 100 horses and 500 local ethnic people with their costumes singing and dancing. The show was directed by a very famous Chinese director. There were also English subtitles on a small screen so I understood the story line. It was quite moving with breathtaking backdrop plus phenomenal performance that left me speechless at the end.
After the show, we went back to the town area to go to Shuhe Old town.
Our last stop was the black Dragon Pond Park. It is worth seeing place and on a clear day you could see the Mt. Yulong from there. But it wasn’t clear by the time we got there. It was a small park so we were there for about 20 minutes.
Now it was time for my last dinner in China 😭. It was hotpot but ,what a shame, I was still too full from eating yak barbecue from Shuhe Old town so although I wanted to, I couldn’t eat much.
After dinner, they dropped us off at the train station to go back to Kunming.