8D 7N CNY 2014 Trip to Yunnan, China


Finally, I’m back. What a trip! If you didn’t know, the reason I’m not here updating my blog for over a week is that I’m away for an oversea family trip to Yunnan, China from 1 Feb to 8 Feb 2014 during the Chinese New Year break. I had just returned to Malaysia yesterday’s night, and it was overall an exhausting trip. Here below are the highlights of this trip that I wish to share with you. Right after the list of places I have visited, there is a star rating I awarded based on my experience for that particular tourist destination.

Ok. I promised. More photos than words this time to make this post not that long or boring. By the way, this is one of the not-so-good trips I ever had. I’m not feeling well most of the time (reasons: oily food, place at very high altitude, throat not well even before the trip started), and some places (I mean quite a lot) are nothing spectacular or worthy to visit.

Feb 1 (Saturday) Kuala Lumpur – Kunming

– Afternoon flight to Kunming, capital of Yunnan province, China by AirAsia. Took a little less than 4 hours. Flight of this duration is still bearable, but the cabin space is too tight (that’s usual for AirAsia planes). No tourist destination to visit today. Head for dinner and then back to hotel for rest.

Feb 2 (Sunday) Kunming 

Stone Forest ***

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– Admitted to hospital for about 6 hours due to extreme stomach pain in the early morning. Hence, skipped the first destination: Stone Forest. But luckily managed to join back the tour later on.

Jiuxang Scenic Area ****

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– The boat tour along the small canyon is too short. The caves are made beautiful mostly by the colourful artificial lights. Still there are some beautiful cave formations to see. This place comes with over 700 steps as mentioned by tour guide. Very tiring.

Colourful Yunnan **

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– Nothing to visit here except some shops selling some of Yunnan’s distinctive stuff but in higher price. We spend the time walking around bored and feeding fishes on the pond.

Feb 3 (Monday) Kunming – Dali

Dinosaur Valley ****

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– This is the most interesting of the whole trip. It’s like we have entered China’s Jurassic Park. We got to see a museum featuring countless dinosaur fossils (my first time seeing all these) and got to learn about the species once dominated this valley before their extinction. But the 4D show provided here is disappointing.

Feb 4 (Tuesday) Dali – Lijiang

Mount Cangshan **

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– Another letdown. We took a cable car up to this mountain and there is nothing spectacular to see from there, except a huge Chinese chess board, a small pond with crystal clear water and some typical waterfalls.

Dali Ancient Town ***

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– Looking at the town from the gate tower makes me feel that I’m in a TVB ancient drama’s shooting. The feeling is great but when it comes to walking down and touring the streets, the ‘ancient’ atmosphere gone. They shouldn’t allow cars or motorbikes to go in (except than tourist shuttle car).

Residential Houses of Bai Minority ***

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– We got to see the courtyard-houses here, but we do see things like this in Malaysia too. Hence, nothing new. The 3-course tea ceremony and the short dancing show featuring costumes and wedding tradition of people of Bai Minority are fine.

Feb 5 (Wednesday) Lijiang

Jade Dragon Snow Mountain ****

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– For visit to this mountain, we had to purposely wake up at 4.00 am and had to go early to the place to avoid massive crowd. But still as we reached there around 6 to 7 am, there were a lot of people queuing already. Wasted few hours just to queue. Hate it. But the view at the mountain is really magnificent and breathtaking. I mean literally breathtaking as we were lack of breath at 4506 metres above sea level. We had to purchase small oxygen tank to breath smoothly. That is the highest point I had ever step on, and it is even higher than Malaysia’s Mount Kinabalu.

Baishui River and Blue Moon Valley (at the mountain scenic area) ***

– Just pass by and is amazed by the crystal clear water and picturesque surrounding at this place.

Impression of Lijiang (performance show) ****

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– Quite an interesting performance show directed by acclaimed director, Zhang Yimou set against the Snow Mountain that acts as a beautiful natural backdrop to the performance.

Jade Water Village **

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– Nothing interesting to see in this village. It’s more like a park, and more relevant to jog and relax there rather than visit the place as a tourist. Fishes in the several ponds here turn out more appealing.

Lijiang Ancient Town ****

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– Beautiful traditional architecture observed here. Wonderful atmosphere in this huge area of ancient plazas, streets, restaurants, pubs and shops rich in heritage value. But we don’t have enough time here.

Feb 6 (Thursday) Lijiang – Shangri La 

Tiger Leaping Gorge ****

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– We are now at much higher altitude. And this tourist destination comes with few hundred steps again. Very tiring. But the view offered below near the canyon is quite impressive. The wind here is so strong and I felt freaking cold. Worth visit anyway.

Feb 7 (Friday) Shangri La (Zhongdian) – Kunming

Pudacuo National Park **

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– Before I came to visit Shangri La (formerly known as Zhongdian), my impression of the place is very beautiful, spectacular, mostly untouched from outer world, like a heaven on Earth. But when I visited the place, it’s nothing more than a small town with small population surrounded by mountains, and that’s it. Nothing more. Another major disappointment. Even this national park offers simply nothing to ‘wow’ us. The two lakes we visited in the park are nothing extraordinary.

Songzanlin Monastery ***

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– This is a slightly smaller version of the Tibet’s Potala Palace.

Feb 8 (Saturday) Kunming – Kuala Lumpur

Yuantong Temple **

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– Just a typical Chinese temple in Kunming city.

Jinma Biji Archway **

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– Considered as the ‘heart’ of Kunming, the plaza features two traditional Chinese archways, and that’s it. The plaza is surrounded by bustling streets, roads and buildings.

Flower Market ***

– The last destination before the trip ends. A huge indoor market selling variety of items like snacks, coffees, jades, herbs and mostly flower-related items. I hate it when the layout or circulation of the market forced us to pass through all the stores before exiting the building.

Generally, this trip is quite of a disappointment rather than an excitement. The beauty of nature offered the most from this trip isn’t that fascinating and failed to had me ‘wow’ including the supposingly exotic Shangri La. The very unhygienic public toilets and the typical rude behaviours of the local people made the trip worst. Also not to forget the extreme dryness and coldness of the weather there which made us all not feeling well throughout the trip especially when it comes to its last few days.

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3 Responses to “8D 7N CNY 2014 Trip to Yunnan, China”

  1. Interesting. I’d like to visit Yunnan this December, thanks for you comments!

  2. hye dear…are u going by ur own or company by tour guide??

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