Saturday July 3, 2010

Thought for the day: “Life is nothing more than a series of hurdles. Take each as they come and embrace all that life has to offer”. – Katie Austin

Nancy and I woke up to our first day in Dali. We were both surprised at how hot it was early in the morning and we started out with our Bai guide, Jane.

We first headed to Lake Erhai (which means “ear” in Bai) for a boat cruise. An uninspired cultural show and a stop at a beautiful island covered with greenery and bougainvilla were included.

Afterwards we had a relaxing walk through Butterfly Spring which included a visit to the amazing butterfly garden. We walked through it as all kinds of beautiful butterflies flitted by—some multi-colored and some that looked just like leaves.

We then went to a tie dye cloth workshop where we could see the various steps that lead to beautiful indigo-dyed fabric. Nancy bought a dress and I got a shirt.

A stroll through Xizhou Bai Town followed. The village seemed to be off the tourist path and is the home of several rich merchants who profited from trade with Tibet.

Then we headed back to touristy but beautiful Dali. We are staying at the Landscape Hotel in Old Town. It is built in the style of a multi-courtyard Bai mansion.

We are tired but happy to be in such a scenic location. Tomorrow we look forward to visiting the Chongseng Buddhist Temple complex (1200 years old), the Three Pagodas and hiking in the mountains with a visit to Zhonghe Temple.

– Jim

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