China # 11 Yangtze River Cruise part 1
The four nights (but really three days) that we spent on the Yangtze River was another memorable part of my trip to China. The river originates from a trickling spring on the Quighai Plateau in Tibet and it then travels over 6,300km where it runs into the ocean at Shanghai. It is estimated that more than 10% of the world population live alongside its banks. This is really amazing when you think about it. Many people are living by clearing and cultivating the land, and fishing in the same way they have done for generations.
We flew from Shanghai to Yichang and then transferred to our cruise ship by coach where we spent four nights cruising down the Yangtze. Before we set sail we visited the dam project site and this was the only wet day that we experienced. We then sailed through Xiling Gorge, the site for the Three Gorges Dam Project (I'll cover that on a different post). The pictures below are just a selection taken as we sailed through the various gorges enjoying the beautiful scenery.This is a couple of photos of our cruise ship, 'The Blue Whale'. It was actually very comfortable, the cabins were not as small as we were led to believe and they were serviced twice a day. However they managed that much laundry twice a day is a mystery to me, but I'm not complaining.As well as lots of cruise boats you also see boats of all shapes and sizes as a lot of cargo is moved on the river including coal for the industries that border the river.
We passed many villages along the river. We passed under quite a few different styles of bridges as you can see below.
This hotel could be reached by cable car or by climbing masses of steps. I know which method I would use!Above is an unfinished 5 star hotel overlooking Fengdu. Apparently they ran out of money but personally I think it looks hideous. Just found another view and it still doesn't look right.
If anyone has managed to plough through all these photos, I hope I have managed to give you a taste of the scenery we saw as we sailed along the Yangtze. You might have noticed in a couple of the shots how the sides of the mountains have been terraced and cultivated. We saw pagodas that looked as though they were perched high in the trees (paths not visible from the river). We saw monkeys feeding on rocks, we heard rather than saw the parrots that frequent one area. We also saw the industrial areas where factories belched out fumes and other places coal was being loaded down shoots into barges.
In some areas the cloud descended but for most parts of the day it was really sunny and warm so it was an enjoyable cruise.
Are you fed up with yet there's a lot more to come!