The really best thing you can do in Zhongdian, is just really taking a walk in the old town.
The Lijiang old town is worldwide famout as it's unesco heritage, but I enjoyed much more this small one.
It's full of small streets not yet full of shops and anyway noone tries to sell you anything so you can stop and give a look without even being noticed.
One of the few historical centres where you really feel away from home, easy to say, but more and more difficult now a days.
On our way back to Dali, on the road we noticed this small tibetan market.
Well actually I am still not sure if it was a market or if they were some kind of nomads with hanging dresses just to dry them.
We went there to give a look and take some photos and those people didn't mind about us at all, they did not offer anything.I asked my chinese guide if she had an idea about what those people were doing and she had no answer; so, once again, something able to surprise me, something able to let me wonder where I am and what is happening around me, this is probably my opinion of the thing to do while in Zhongdian, wander without wondering too much.
Many village houses along the road. Most of them built by wood, with stones on roof top to avoid strong wind blowing off the shelter.
I guess these people do not always see outsiders, whenever they see bus passes by, these local villagers will come out to look at us.
The Napahai Lake is 3270 meters above sea level and covers 660 square km. Mountains stand by it on three sides and 10-plus rivers flow into it after zigzagging through the grasslands. In autumn , the prairie changes into a golden color and rare birds such as black necked crane and bar-headed goose flock to the area for winter .
Check out my Travelogue for more photos.
Situated in Baidi Village, the 50 meters high Bai Shui Tai covers an area of three hectares. It gradually took form by accumulation of calcium carbonate in water in millions of years.
Check out my Travelogue for more details.
I have no idea on what this is. There are many of these kind of small stone pagoda along the road. Some people said inside the stones is a Tibetan Religous Book, where people will simply put a stone on it when they passes by, making it a small pagoda. Some suspected it is a tomb. Please tell me if you know.
Song Zan Lin Monastery, also called Guihua Monastery, is the largest Tibetan Buddhist monastery in Yunnan province, as well as one of the 13 large lamaseries in the Kangzang region (the joint area of Tibet, Sichuan and Yunnan). The monastery is 5km from the seat of Zhongdian County...
More photos & info in my Travelogue
Dong Ju Lin Monastery, one of the 13 largest lamaseries in the Kangzang region, is located in the Baimang Snow Mountain area, 105km away from ZhongDian County with elevation of 3,000 meters.
Although its not as grant and large as the Song Zan Lin Monastery, I actually like this one better: (besides the fact that I don't have to climb no stairs)* A little monastery, standing right next to a cliff, surrounded by mountains, no disturbing noice but just the sound of chanting and bells echoing through the woods and mountains~~ It really makes you feel like you are away from the chaotic world, with peace in your heart.
Again.. some good looking lamas...
Some more pictures can be found in my travelogue
The road trip is a must see activity.. because It's really a must.. you can't avoid it..
It takes about 4-5 hours to go from LiJiang to ZhongDian, and even longer from ZhongDian to Deqin, about 8 hours. But the scenary along the road is great! It's great that we hired our own car cuz we could stop the car whenever we want and take pictures!
Between the Golden Sand River and the Lencang River is the Baimang Snow Mountain with perennial snow - capped peaks. An area of 180,000 ha around it is designated as the nature reserve, with a perfectly preserved primeval forest vertical landscape and valuable animals and plants. The Yunnan Snub - nosed Monkey, the first class protected animal in China, lives in this area.
also called Guihua Monastery, is the largest Tibetan Buddhist monastery in Yunnan province, built along the mountains with a magnificent facade, the present monastery is a faithful imitation of the Potala Palace in Lhasa, Tibet.
this monastery has many treasures. the most famous are the eight gold-covered sculptures of Sakyamuni, fashioned between the time of the Fifth and Seventh Dalai Lamas. in the early Qing Dynasty, the rulers of Lijiang, the Mu Family, presented the monastery with dozens of bronze sculptures, the "Ganzur" scriptures hand-written in liquid gold, scriptures written on pattra leaves, gold lamps, and many exquisite gilded silver incense burners. every morning, noon and evening, the solemn tolling of the bells and the sound of the drums from the bell and drum towers can be heard several kilometers away.
Hire a jeep, or hop on a bus (prepare winter clothing!) and get closer to Meili.
If you hire a jeep, it should cost no more than RMB400 per day.
This was the driver I hired: a young tibetan chap and a sharp businessman by the name of Wang4Dui1: 139 887 68217
On the way you get to see:
1) Jin1 Sha1 River (the tributary of Yangzi River) big bend
2) Dong1 Zhu2 Lin2 lama temple/monastery (Yellow sect)
3) Benzilan town overseeing the Jin Sha River valley, and eat the river fish there
4) Cold snowy mountains
This park’s total area is 1313 square kilometers, of which, 300 square kilometers has been opened out for sight-seeing. This park is in possession of well-conserved landscape resources such as geology and geomorphology, lake and wetland, forest meadow, valley and rivulet, as well as rare wildlife animals and plants. You can walk usin wooden plank trails or sit comfortably one of park's bus as a private or tour buses are not allowed inside the park.
Napa Hai, with the nearby Yila Prairie, forms the largest prairie in the Shangrila area. It is famous for the broad boundless grassland, all kinds of lovely vegetations, yaks, sheep and black neck cranes.... what a wonderful places...
It was raining when I was there, all I can see was yellow grassland and and the gray foggy sky~ obviously not as good as I expected...
When I was so depressed and wanted to leave.. I saw this cute little black piggy running around in the grassland near me and lightened up a bit.. so I yell "oh so cute! let me take a picture with you!!" As soon as I jumped over the fences and ran towards it... it ran away, fast like the wind.. and vanished behind the fog.... when I turned around.. I found that my friend was laughing so hard that tears came out of her eyes...
"I saw fear in his eyes... its like he saw Godzilla running towards him... wahahaa" * she said...
That's why you all couldn't get a good look at that cute piggy.. instead.. I got a horse picture for you.. they didn't run away...