Noilly Prattle: China - Winter 2016 (move to Shaxi)

Sunday, May 22, 2016

China - Winter 2016 (move to Shaxi)

     If Dali was about getting acclimated to a large town popular with tourists in Yunnan, away from the hustle and bustle of the commercial center of Shanghai, five days in Shaxi was about exploring the countryside of rural Yunnan.

rape blossoms blurring by the national highway

       The staff of the Yin Fang Inn arranged the same car and driver who took us to Butterfly Spring to make the 3-hour drive to Shaxi. The route varied from a 6-lane national highway zipping by fields of rape blossoms, a new toll road and a winding country road through verdant fields and large and small villages.

verdant fields and villages along winding country roads


waiting for the tuk-tuk - our very capable driver
cobblestone and clear running water -
mountain runoff that you can drink
    Shaxi is a charming and quiet small town, a big contrast to Dali with a completely different feel. The car couldn't enter the older part of town and we had to park and walk a short distance into the town. The driver called the hotel (Cato Inn) for us and arranged a meeting place. The hotel owner soon arrived in a tuk-tuk and loaded our bags on, but we had to walk the short distance through the old town's sun dappled cobblestone streets with a cool clear stream babbling right down the side and through the square with its old outdoor theater to the hotel situated in a narrow alleyway.

Cato Inn - our hotel on the left
Shaxi town square and the old theater

our room left and
plum wine, peanuts and dried fruit from the market
        The hotel is traditional in structure and modernized a bit for comfort. We booked a room with a beautiful view of the valley and mountains to the east. After settling in we explored around the little town a bit and bought some peanuts and dried fruit to go with our plum wine which we enjoyed on our veranda while admiring the view. Afterwards we went out to a restaurant just around the corner from the town square called Orange Restaurant and had a delicious Chinese dinner of: shredded beef with shiitake mushrooms; sweet and sour sautéed cabbage; and a slightly (we specified) spicy hot potato soup with marinated vegetables. Too delicious to bother with pictures. Yum!

view of  inn courtyard, valley and mountains beyond

along the river front just east of town

the old East Gate
red hot peppers used A LOT
in Bai ethnic cuisine

Orange Restaurant - ate here every day

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