Trekking Through China…Cruising Down the Yangtze River

Actually, did you know that most Chinese do not know what or where the “Yangtze River ” is? Even if you could say it (“Yangzi”) in Mandarin, most people in China would not know what you are talking about.  The majority of Chinese do not call the river the Yangtze, they call it the Chang Jiang, which means ‘long river,’ or some just refer to it as “the river.” The Yangtze River is the third longest in the world, just slightly shorter than the Amazon and Nile. See more of the technical info here!

Whatever it’s called, our cruise down (or was it up?) “the river” was beautiful. From the moment we left the locks until we arrived in Chongqing, we enjoyed a constant feast for the eyes everywhere we looked. With very little sunshine throughout our 4-day cruise, the tall jagged mountains rose out of the still dark waters and quickly disappeared into the grey mist. My hundreds of photographs of our passage through the gorges all came out rather dull and somewhat monochromatic, but even wrapped in hazy mystery, the scenery was breathtaking…perhaps you’ll decide that it was a beauty that you had to actually be there to see, lol. But here is a sampling of some of the amazing sights we saw while cruising through the gorges of the Yangtze River.

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Misty mountains rising up from the Yangtze River

There was always other boat traffic on the river. And lots of little communities nestled in the middle of nowhere!

I’m not sure if this was a casualty of flooding, but people still live here. Must be very drafty at times (and it can get very cold in that area!!)

A new vista at every bend of the river…this photo was taken from the smaller boat that took us an a morning excursion through the Lesser Three Gorges.

Another tourist boat out for a cruise through the Gorges

I never tired of watching the beauty of nature unfolding before my eyes (photo taken while cruising through the Lesser Gorges of the Yangtze River)

Yet another gorgeous bend in the river…

We didn’t see much wildlife along the way, not even a lot of birds. These little guys were a rare sight!

For most of the cruise we were completely surrounded by mountains. It truly was breathtakingly beautiful!

Meanwhile, back on the cruise ship, we were treated to many afternoon diversions. This is an artist (sorry, didn’t catch his name), who started with a blank piece of paper and created a masterpiece right before our eyes!

The finished painting!

The grand finale…

Voila! This one sold right away for quite a hefty price!

We also enjoyed some cooking classes…here we were taught how to make our own dumplings…very easy and tasty!!

And in the evening, our waitresses and cabin crew put on a wonderful show. The girl second from the right was one of our waitresses in the dining room throughout our 4-day cruise.

This is what our dining room crew looked like during the day. They were so beautiful and gentle, hard-working – and eager to learn as much English – and French – as possible while we were there.

And this is how our crew looked at night! They never stopped working to please us!

Meanwhile, back on the balcony, another of many, many bridges we encountered along the way.

We passed more bridges than we could count! They were everywhere! Huge bridges!!

LOL, looks like Barb’s foot is playing the harp (actually, we’re going under another bridge). Barb was one of our tour-mates.

You could smell Chongqing long before we reached it. It’s the largest city in China, very industrialized, seemingly very polluted, and a rather rude awakening after all the glorious scenery we had cruised through over the past four days! But Chongqing also has PANDAS! We’ll visit the pandas in the next blog!!

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Copyright © Sharon C. Matthies, Meanderings (blog), 2012. All rights reserved.

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About Sharon

I love to write. I love to write myself into being right here right now. Writing releases something in me that needs wings, writing opens doors and windows that I often don't even realize are possible, writing helps me breathe out the dusty old, and to breathe in the new and possible. My hope is that maybe writing here in this blog will bring new light into these dusty old hallways and help me to clear out the thinking processes and mindsets that just don't work for me anymore. I seek to breathe new light and life into the nooks and crannies of a soul that has been feeling somewhat lost and frayed because of the last few patches of road I've had to travel.
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2 Responses to Trekking Through China…Cruising Down the Yangtze River

  1. Sharon, I am so glad you’re sharing this trip with us! I’m always looking forward to the next installment!! 🙂


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