Huangyao Ancient Town Guangxi China

 

Huangyao Ancient Town Guangxi China

Admiring the ancient buildings from a traditional boat

Huangyao Ancient Town, Guangxi, China

With a history of a thousand years, built-in 927 B.C, reaching its prime during the reign of Emperor Qianlang of the Qing Dynasty (1644 – 1911).  The name Huangyao came from the family names of the townspeople mainly Huang and Yao ethnic groups.

Some scenes from the movie ‘The Painted Veil’ was filmed here.  This movie inspired me to visit China as I thought the scenery was so beautiful.

I hired a driver and English-speaking guide, from Yangshuo which took about two hours.  Drivers in China usually don’t speak English so you need hire an English speaking guide as well, this was the most expensive part of my trip.

Huangyao was the most authentic town I visited in China, the narrow cobbled lanes lined with tiny coffee shops, bars and restaurants.  It wasn’t crowded with tourists and only had a few souvenir shops.

Huangyao Ancient Town Guangxi China

Huangyao Ancient Town Guangxi China

Stone Arch Bridge

Huangyao Ancient Town Guangxi China

Huangyao Ancient Town Guangxi China

Banyan Tree

Huangyao Ancient Town Guangxi China

Quirky Cafe with hundreds of post-it's

Quirky Cafe with hundreds of post-it’s

Huangyao Ancient Town Guangxi China

This little lady is 96 years old, we lit incense before praying to a buddha in a small shrine

At the end of the day as were walking back to the car there were a group of school children on a trip.  They immediately surrounded me and they started practicing their English.  The main thing they said was ‘Pleased to Meet You’ and one girl asked me where was I from – my guide translated ‘New Zealand’.  I didn’t see any foreign people in this town so maybe they don’t often get the chance to talk to tourists.  As we drove away they were waving goodbye to me ‘They Were so Sweet’.

 

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Yangshuo Karst Mountains Guangxi Province China

Yangshuo Karst Mountains Guangxi Province China

Yulong River

Yangshuo Karst Mountains, Guangxi Province, China

I stayed in a small village called Chao Long which was about four kilometres from Yangshuo.  The guest house I stayed in was within walking distance to the Yulong River.

One of the activities in this area is to cycle around the paddy fields, so I decided to hire a bicycle which was bit of a disaster. I hadn’t rode a bike since I was about 12 and was quite nervous of the traffic. You need to cycle on the road to get to the cycling paths.

My expensive walking sandals gave me blisters and although it was spring it was 28 degrees and very humid and I got lost.Yangshuo Karst Mountains Guangxi Province China

Yangshuo Karst Mountains Guangxi Province China

I stayed at the Outside Inn which was a 600 year old farmhouse converted into a guest house.  I had a huge room with a bathroom for a very reasonable price.  The walls were so thick you didn’t need air-conditioning.

The restaurant served breakfast, lunch and dinner and the food was good with big portions.  There was outdoor eating area set in lovely gardens surrounded by Karst Mountains.

Outside Inn Yangshuo China

Outside Inn Yangshuo China

Outside Inn Yangshuo China

Outside Inn Yangshuo China

Outdoor Dining Area, Outside Inn Yangshuo China

I decided to do a trip on the Li River on a motorized Bamboo Raft.  You can also do trips on the Yulong River, these Bamboo Rafts are not motorized.

Karst Mountains Li River Yangshuo China

Li River Yangshuo

Karst Mountains Li River Yangshuo China

Li River Yangshuo

Karst Mountains Li River Yanshuo China

Li River Yangshuo

 


Why I didnt visit the Great Wall of China

Why I didnt visit the Great Wall China

Why I didn’t visit the Great Wall in China

Most people who visit China would include The Great Wall on their itinerary.  I did consider this option which meant I would be staying in Beijing for a few days. Beijing’s population is 24 million people and polluted.

I was travelling to China on my own and I was nervous about visiting such a populated city.  I am quite claustrophobic and I don’t like large crowds of people.  I also had my heart set on Yangshuo and Lijiang which is a long way from Beijing.

The reason why I visited China

I inherited a small amount of money and decided to spend it on travel.  I had traveled before getting married and having children, but whilst bringing up three boys we could only afford trips around New Zealand.

A film called ‘The Painted Veil’ inspired me to visit China, based on the 1925 novel by  W. Somerset Maugham.  Set in the 1930’s and filmed in London, Shanghai and Huangyao Ancient Town, Guangxi Province. Edward Norton and Naomi Watts were the main stars.   One of the first scenes of the film featured an amazing landscape of Karst Mountains.

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The-painted-veil-the-painted-veil-3410802

 

painted veil book

 

Below is links to posts on Yangshuo and Huangyao Ancient town where the movie was filmed.

Yangshuo

Yulong River Yangshuo China

Huangyao Ancient Town

Huangyao Ancient Town, Guangxi Province

 

 


Bohemian Fashion in Chiang Mai

Ginger Home is a clothes and hardware shop in Chiang Mai, Thailand. A bohemian fashion store where you can find  bohemian style clothes and beautiful accessories for your holidays.  A complete collection of fashion apparel ranging from clothes, handbags, sun glasses, jewelry and other accessories.

Here we have a gorgeous shirt paired with a matching shawl. Designed on muted colours and decorated by colourful embroidery, this picture forms a strikingly beautiful image.

Gold earrings and hair styled with flowers compliment this lovely colorful dress

No outfit is complete without a handbag. This colorful handbag that can be paired with any dress.

Here is another stunning short summer dress that is ultra-chic and enchantingly lovely.

This gorgeous black number with vibrantly colourful embroidery around the neckline is the perfect dress for a night out.

No look is complete without complementary jewelery. These bright set of bangles and bracelets can make any look ten times more attractive!

Stunning earrings made up of an incredibly intricate design and beautiful rings that accentuate your hands, what more can a girl want?

This lovely red dress made out of soft fabric and covered with vibrant prints can be the perfect choice for a vacation.

What better way to complete a fetching outfit than by a splendid necklace? Highlight the contours of your pretty neck with magnificent gold and turquoise necklaces.

 


Green Spirit Villa Ubud Bali

Green Spirit Villa Ubud Bali

This villa is a 10 minute drive from the artistic center Ubud.  Overlooking a peaceful valley with views of the river and surrounded by tropical plants.

The outdoor area features an infinity pool decorated with Balinese garden statues, creating a relaxing and calming ambiance.

The Balinese-style rooms are tastefully decorated featuring private terraces and stunning views.

Ubud Bali

The furniture and decor compliment the natural beauty of Bali

Ubud Bali

Gain a moment of spiritual introspection on the patio with a breath-taking view of the jungle

Green Spirit Villa Ubud Bali

Each bedroom uniquely decorated for rest and rejuvenation

Green Spirit Villa Ubud Bali

Overlooking the valley from a refreshing infinity pool

Green Spirit Villa Ubud Bali

Let your mind wander as you relax closer to nature than ever before

Green Spirit Villa Ubud Bali

Allow your spirit and imagination to soar at every turn

Green Spirit Villa Ubud Bali

Eat breakfast on your own private deck adorned in exotic plants

Green Spirit Villa Ubud Bali

Listen to the gentle rain lull you to sleep

Green Spirit Villa Ubud Bali

Large windows connecting you with nature

Green Spirit Villa Ubud Bali

Here the tree leaves rustle in the breeze and watch the life of the jungle

Green Spirit Villa Ubud Bali

Natural decor for complete rest and relaxation

Green Spirit Villa Ubud Bali

Bungalows surrounded by jungle for complete privacy

Green Spirit Villa Ubud Bali

A private terrace off the bedroom allows for easy access to witness a stunning sunset

 


Tibetan Zhiyun Monastery China

Tibetan Zhiyun Monastery China

Zhiyun Tibetan Monastery China

Built in 1727, situated about 17km from Lijiang, Yunnan Province, China.  It differs from the traditional Tibetan architecture as the carvings and designs taken from Naxi Han and Bai people.

I visited this monastery  with a tour guide arriving early morning in time to watch the young monks chanting and playing traditional music. Unfortunately we were not allowed to take photographs inside . The ages of the monks were between six and seventeen, it is a great honor for a male member of a Tibetan family to become a monk.

Stupa’s may represent the five purified elements

  • The square base represents earth
  • The hemispherical dome/vase represents water
  • The conical spire represents fire
  • The upper lotus parasol and the crescent moon represents air
  • The sun and the dissolving point represents the element of space

This was the highlight of my China trip, it was a very spiritual and moving experience.

Tibetan Zhiyun Monastery China

Tibetan Zhiyun Monastery China

Tibetan Zhiyun Monastery China

Prayer Wheel – The concept of the prayer wheel is a physical manifestation of the phrase “turning the wheel of Dharma,” which describes the way in which the Buddha taught.

Tibetan Zhiyun Monastery ChinaTibetan Zhiyun Monastery ChinaTibetan Zhiyun Monastery ChinaTibetan Zhiyun Monastery ChinaTibetan Zhiyun Monastery China

Tibetan Zhiyun Monastery China


Whimsical Guest House in Bangkok

Phranakorn-Nornlea Guest House

This whimsical guest house situated in the old Bangkok District, Thailand and is within walking distance of Bangkok’s temples and Chao Phraya River. The design reflects local Thai life in the 1920’s.

Each quirky room is individually designed with its own distinctive painted murals, hand embroidered bedspreads, recycled furniture, patchwork cushions and curtains.  An organic rooftop garden supplies fresh produce for the restaurant, whilst a craft shop sells handmade crafts and eco-products.

This Guest House is definitely on my travel list.

PHRAKORNphra-nakorn-norn-len - Copy (2)

 


Dongchuan Red Land Yunnan Province China

Dongchuan Red Land is situated north-east of Kunming, Yunnan Province, China. There are bus’s run from Kunming but apparently it’s quite complicated.  I hired an English-speaking driver.

Dongchuan Redland

The soil has oxidised iron and various metallic minerals which gives it a reddish-brown colour. The fields planted with multi-color crops, emerald-green barley, golden-yellow buckwheat and snow-white oil flowers.

http://www.dreamstime.com/stock-photo-dongchuan-red-land-yunnan-province-china-image41637440

http://www.dreamstime.com/stock-photos-red-land-image9595103

DC6

The highlights include Jinxiu Garden, Qicai Slope, Yuepu Hollow, Yueliang Field, Damakan and Lexiagua.

Waves of colour is a photographer’s and artist’s dream.

In response to The Daily Post’s weekly photo challenge Earth


Lijiang & Shuhe Ancient Towns China

Tibetan Couple

Lijiang & Shuhe Ancient Towns – My guide and I stopped off at Shuhe Ancient town for coffee on our way to a Tibetan Monastery.  Shuhe is similar to Lijiang but quieter.  Whilst sitting at a cafe a professional photographer was taking a photo of the couple above.  I asked if I could take a photo and he agreed, my guide thought that they were a Tibetan Bridge & Groom.

 

Lijiang Square

Lijiang Square

Quaint Streets of Lijiang

Quaint Streets of Lijiang

Lijiang Ancient Town is a three hours drive from the Tibetan border.   Built in the late Song Dynasty and the early Yuan Dynasty and has a history of more than 800 years.  The Old Town is a maze of winding cobblestone streets and is very easy to get lost. The layout of the town established to conform to the flow of three streams in adherence to “Feng Shui” design, so there was water and waste disposal for the inhabitants.

I stayed on the outskirts of the old town in a traditional courtyard hotel Kimbro Inn a ten minute walk to the main square.   My room was gorgeous with antique Chinese furniture and access to a terrace looking over the rooftops and gargoyles.

Kimbro Inn

I needed to book a train to Dali my next destination, but unfortunately none of the travel agents or staff at the hotel spoke English.  The hotel organised a Chinese girl who could speak English to help me, her name was Maggie, she was delightful and we spent the day together.She took me to a friends Tibetan Hotel for a Chinese Tea Drinking session.  We spent most of the afternoon drinking various teas and relaxing in the hotel courtyard.

Maggie

Tibetan Courtyard Hotel

There are twenty ethnic groups living in Yunnan Province.  Naxi Minority ladies dance every day in the Square to entertain the tourists.  Maggie persuaded some of the ladies to have a photo taken with me, they are quite shy and don’t like being photographed.

Naxi Minority Ladies

Naxi Minority Ladies Dancing in Lijiang Square

Naxi Minority Ladies Dancing in Lijiang Square

I stayed in Lijiang on a weekend and it was very busy so I walked around the back streets to avoid the crowds.   I had planned to walk to Lion Rock which has an amazing view but I got lost.  Lijiang is 18,000 ft above sea level, I suffered from some altitude sickness, drinking lots of water seemed to help.  I found a cafe with a sign outside which read ‘Lijiang’s Best View’ so I decided to have a cold drink whilst admiring the rooftops of Lijiang.

Lijiang, Yunnan Province, China

Lijiang Rooftops

Water Wheel, Lijiang Square

Water Wheel, Lijiang Square

In response to the Daily Post Photo Challenge Partners