The rest of my entries will most likely be done via phone! Apologies for formatting and other issues 🙂
Yangshou is such a beautiful town nestled in the middle of the surrounding mountains that are often laden with fog in the winter months. This gave it that mystic feel that entrances all the tourists that visit here. You find yourself just staring off into the distant mountains in awe. This leg of the Dragon Trip in Yangshou has been one of great times and bonding between the people in our group.
Our first night here we were treated with a wonderful table of shared plates of Chinese dishes which was a range of vegetarian and meat options. The first day was spent, at first sleeping in, but later in the afternoon the whole group went cycling on the quieter more scenic roads of the town. It was absolutely gorgeous. We stopped at a meadow of yellow blooming flowers.
We met 3 Chinese tourists who absolutely loved our group and wanted lots of photos and selfies! Next we got to see the sights of the Yulong river on traditional bamboo rafts. Lift your feet so they don’t get wet! All such good fun.
The next day we tried the traditional Chinese practice of hot cupping. The sensation is so strange! They are applied using a burning flame to heat the cup quickly and then suctioned onto the skin. This is to release the negative energy in ones muscles. The bruises make it look like you have been attacked by an octopus! Not for the squeamish or those with a very low pain threshold.
On our final full day in Yangshou we were flat out. First we took a private bus to the Golden Water cave, which is essentially the mud caves, but hey, “golden water” is a nicer name. The caves themselves were beautiful. The shapes created by water which was once flooded throughout the caves, are interesting! The best part is jumping into the mud water, having mud fights and applying it all over your skin. I was game enough to put it through my hair!
After enjoying the mud for a bit, which is quite cold, we showered off and went and soaked in the natural hot springs of the cave. The only hot spring cave in the world! Lucky us. The warm was a very welcome sensation after the cold of the mud and the cave itself. Once we had finished up here we went off kayaking on the Li River. I have never had such a ball kayaking before. This was partly due to the tour group being the best bunch of people ever and our hilariously sassy guide; Mulan. Not to mention we filled up Chris’s kayak with water and he barely made it in time to the bank to get out! Such good times. Li River is so gorgeously scenic. Some of the mountains are right alongside the river. This makes for some beautiful photos!
On our final night in Yangshou it was St Patrick’s Day! We have 3 lovely Irish lasses in our group so of course that called for drinking games and night out to say goodbye to Yangshou. We started at the hostel with good old Kings cup (aka Ring of Fire) and beer costing $5 yuan ($1 AUD). We made our way out to Monkey Janes Rooftop Bar to play Beer Pong Aussie rules style. Monkey Jane is a must do on your night out in Yangshou! She’s so lovely and because she had won the local lottery that day we didn’t pay for a beer all night! After doing a review on TripAdvisor or Hostelworld you will get a free T-shirt too!
Yangshou has been so good to us while staying here. The people are wonderfully kind and happy and the cool weather is charming but make sure you do rug up if you come here in winter! Now we are off to catch another train this time to Chengdu. A 25 hour journey!
Next entry find out about our Dragon Trip adventures in Chengdu visiting the panda sanctuary and big Buddha!
Sam and Kirsten x