The Province of Yunnan

November 24, 2014  |  By  | 

Shangri-La The Town Up in the Sky Shangri-La is the most isolated place I had seen yet on this trip. Lost and surrounded in the vertiginous mountains at a breathtaking (literally) altitude. It was the most remarkable place we had been to.   On our first morning there waking up is hard for everyone because of the -4 degrees waiting outside the room for us. But we all wake up and are forced to walk for five minutes to get to breakfast with our nose and ears numb because of the cold.   As we enter ‘Noah’s’ little restaurant we sit down and are served a Swiss hot chocolate, which already puts everyone in a better mood. Our first actual western- breakfast is served with proper bread and eggs, which starts out the day in a good way already. The first hike on the mountains is for an hour and a half the weather is slightly chilly and it feels good to be able to actually wear short sleeve shirts for the first time. Stopping at Half-Way (the name of the restaurant) on the top of the mountains with an astonishing view puts a smile on everyone’s faces. Even if the food was not the best we all got something in our stomach and were ready to go again for another 3 to 4 hours. Our vehement attitude makes the walk entertaining and doesn’t allow us to think about the fatigue in our legs. We arrive at Tina’s guesthouse now, which doesn’t really seem like the nicest place to spend a night with no electricity and barely any hot water . Soon enough the next morning the discomfort of it all slights goes away as we open our curtains with mind-blowing huge mountains with snow on top took.   Being in Shangri-La put us all in the Tibetan plateau for all of us it was the first time. On that night we are driven in a bus to a typical Tibetan family, which honestly does not really excite anyone at first. As we arrive there the sun is already down and the temperature really drops down. We are taken inside the house upstairs around a little fire to try and warm us all up. While we see women dressed ‘locally’ putting the food on the fire and preparing dinner our guide tells us about the culture of the place. All of us are attentive and full of questions about this culture that is completely different then all of ours. From learning about the strict rules of the arranged marriage that the parents expect you to follow to how the first child has to stay home with their parents, not one bit did people lose focus or get bored. After at least an hour of discussing and talking with the guide we are all put on little tables and are served food and the local drink called ‘butter milk’ that everyone tries but only some of us enjoy. I think the food we had was the best local food we had had so far in the trip. After the meal we clear the tables out of the way and the family starts dancing around the ceremony pillar, once they are done some of us are invited by them to go dance and helplessly try to follow them but out rhythm and coordination is completely off which makes them laugh. Then we taught them the Macarena, which was fun and made the grandma of the house laugh a lot. The evening went so well and none of us saw the time passing but we have to go back to our guesthouse and get a good night sleep in hopefully a warm bed. SHANGRI-LA HIGHLIGHTS The massive mountains were almost scary. As we climbed it we enjoyed the amazing view that captured all of our attention. The lovely typical family that re visited for dinner. They were all smiling and while they danced you could see the happiness on their faces and it made me feel happy. WEATHER OF THE YEAR  The weather in Shangri-La can go from -2 degrees to 30 degrees so you might want to look up what the weather is like in the period of the year when you want to go to pack smart. JANFEBMARAPRMAYJUNJULAUGSEPOCTNOV ºF 3241485766738287756454 ºC -2 591419232830241812 Credits to Mr.Graham

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