AnneMarie and Andrew

Annemarie and Andrew – Trekking Asia

Dali: Horse Riding


Posted on Nov 27, 2013

We spent the morning packing bags and planning things and checked out of our room by midday. We are taking the overnight train to Kunming (arriving at 5am) so that gave is all afternoon with nothing much to do. So we arranged with the hostel for a few hours of horse riding, up into the forest behind Dali. Our poor horses had to navigate through a massive building site (in China construction sites are absolutely everywhere) which had noisy machinery, cement mixers blocking the road and all manner of obstacles. Annemarie’s horse seemed afraid of loud noises and kept trying to get away. Then we hit the slopes up through the forest. The path was littered with stones and boulders of all sizes and both our horses were slipping a bit. This is the first time I’ve been on a horse in at least 15 years and I think Annemarie’s first time, so neither of is felt that great with the horses slipping and tripping on the steep and narrow path. We finally reached a small but very nice village. We wandered the village on foot and walked up the hillside to see a waterfall and the source of the village’s water supply. Then we had the fun of riding the horses back down the path and through the building site. It was fine, not really the guys fault that there is now a huge construction site over what was one forest. We enjoyed it. Posted from...

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Dali: Old Town


Posted on Nov 26, 2013

Dali is actually two towns. There is the new town where the bus and train station are, then 12km away there is the Old town of Dali. An Ancient Kingdom in China famed for its marble, mountains and water. This is one of the top destinations for Chinese backpackers and people who we have met on the way recommended it or were also coming here. Maybe it is because we were spoilt by the clean streets of Lijiang with canals running alongside and under the path. Whatever the reason, Dali has fallen way below expectations. The centre having been rebuilt since 1999 where the streets were made of mud and the houses run down. See the gallery section – Dali. Now the Old Town of Dali is full of Western style cafes and shops. There are four gates which are highly decorated and you can walk a few hundred metres along the wall but that’s about it. Other things to do include walking or taking the cable car up the mountain – Cangshan Mountain We are hoping to go for a horse ride up the mountain tomorrow, all being well. We had to cancel today as we ate at an iffy restaurant, which did not agree with me. Aside from the above and the Three Pagodas it is rather difficult to explore the other ‘must do’ of the Lake unless you own a motorbike or have lots of money like the Chinese Tourists. We had wanted to do a tour that is run by the hostel for a reasonable price but it requires 4 people and the others staying in the hostel appear not to venture out. Another ‘must do’ is the cable car up the mountain but at 230yuan or £23 each, not bad if you are in Switzerland but extremely expensive when a meal out for the locals is 4yuan. Plus it will blow our daily budget. Dali has given us time to purchase a rucksack cover, post a postcard and eat more Western food but with hindsight we’d have spent one day here before heading off to Vietnam earlier to allow more time in Sa Pa and walking through the rice terraces. Posted from Dali, Yunnan,...

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Dali: Three Pagodas Park


Posted on Nov 26, 2013

We’re in the Jade Emu hostel, which is just off the main road along the edge of Dali. We arrived at the hostel around 11:30am in desperate need of a shower and food. So we needed something to do in the afternoon. Luckily for us the Three Pagodas park is about a mile down the main road. The temple complex is enormous. I recorded us walking back and we covered almost 1.1 miles – plus Google shows us descending from the clouds. © OpenStreetMap contributors Download Old Dali is situated between Erhai lake to the east and pinned against the backbone of the Cangshan range to the west. The temples are at the foot of these mountains and slowly ascend up the slope. Each temple is higher than the last and gives a better view as you get deeper into the complex. There was almost no information as we wandered around. All we had was a brief overview on our ticket, so we didn’t know what most of the buildings we were looking at were for; although a giant Buddha in many of them might have been a clue. Also in China it’s hard to know what is original, what is restored and what was totally rebuilt from scratch. These photos are just the highlight, for all our photos of the Three Pagodas Park look here. Some excellent panorama shots too. Posted from Dali, Yunnan,...

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