Zhangjiajie, Hunan – Part 1

We flew from Shenyang to Changsha and spent one night there before heading out for a 5 day tour to Zhangjiajie. Zhangjiajie has become enormously famous since its been featured as the mountainous backdrop you see in Avatar!

We went to Po Zi Jie which is basically the Robson St of the city – shopping and eating. We passed by some street food stalls and the first thing that catches your eyes, and your nose, is this blackened tofu…when I said it caught my nose, it wasn't an appetizing smell to say the least. For those familiar with the smell you'll recognize it right away. Yes you guessed it, STINKY TOFU! For those that don't know what it is, it's basically fermented tofu. I've tried the one in Hong Kong before and didn't like it. This version is black and we essentially stayed away from it. However, this is probably one of the most popular street food item sold in Hunan. We saw a lineup for one of the stalls in the city and you can be sure to get a whiff of the 'stinkiness' from time to time when roaming the streets.

After bypassing the street stalls, we ate at this restaurant recommended by the tour guide. It's like a dim sum place where they serve a bunch of different mini plates. It was pretty busy for 3pm and you'll have to be aggressive in finding a table since the waitresses are not going to help you. They're too busy serving and cleaning.

There were over 50 different things on the menu so it was hard to decide what to get. Most notable was the spicy mini lobster dish we ordered. It got spicier the more you eat. Our lips were burning the whole time. It wasn't really worth it because there wasn't much meat on these things and costed 68RMB.

After lunch we walked around some more and decided to head back to the hotel early since we have to get up early for a 5.5hr bus ride to Zhangjiajie.

We were pretty disappointed with the sights as it rained heavily majority of the time we were there. On top of that the skies were extremely hazy so you couldn't really see too much ahead of you. The views would have been awesome if the weather had cooperated.

On our first day of the tour everyone in our tour group was scheduled to go to the yellow dragon cave except us. We already went to the Benxi watercave so it didn't interest us. We had an hour to kill so we walked around the surrounding area and took some pics.

The market nearby that sold street food and souvenirs

Later on, we got transferred to another vehicle so we could start our tour and head out to Baofeng Lake. The fog wasn't that bad there actually so we could see the mountains.




First and only time we weren't in a sea of people.




Along the way there would be a singer on a docked boat that would belt out a traditional folk song. Nice touch.




It's not clear until I zoom in but on the right side of the middle mountain in the back you're suppose to see an image of a peacock. Spot it?


Now? 🙂



A male folk singer




Looks like a piece of poop lol





At night we went to a stage show called Zhangjiajie – Charming Western Hunan. There was dancing, acrobatics, and singing – all intergrated to illustrate the history and culture of the province. The show was quite vivid with the colorful costumes and large stage settings. The most impressive were the acrobats. I've seen them on tv but witnessing them live is unbelievable. The first part of the show was in the theater and the second part was on the outside stage.

Outside of the venue. Crazy lights going.





One word, BUSY


Inside looks pretty cool.





And the show begins!









Notice the dog in the front of the boat? He was so well behaved and stayed put the whole time.












Human jump rope












These two girls were crazy good!






No wires here!


This move was sick. Shows strength and grace



What's that rising in the background? Is that…


Yes it was a penis! On the side screen the summary on the scenario was about reproduction and fertility. Whose idea was it to make it so veiny and attach a tree house to it? Lol







Holy crap, she's swinging upside down with only their feet hooked to each other!




This scenario was about this general that led dead soldiers spirits back home
















This last scenario was about marriage






The show continued on the outdoors stage where several individuals demonstrated superhuman feats. There was a gaffe in the first act. Three men stacked on top of each other sandwiched in between beds of nails. The third man would have a large slab of concrete laid on his chest while another guy breaks it with a sledge hammer. The emcee said they should break it within five swings. He struck down the hammer like 20 times and still couldn't break the slab! That was a dud.




The second act was more hype. This guy used his Qi gong to sustain three huge slabs of concrete laid on his body. If that wasn't crazy enough, they invited 7-8 audience members to stand on top of the concrete. It's like have a car on top of you! Hats off to that guy!


Put on the second one…


The third…


Now add the people!


He's still alive!


The final act we turn to the side and some dude walk on a gigantic saber. Looks like something that should be in a martial arts movie. To show that the blade was sharp he pushed some ribbon on top of the blade and it cut rather easily. Well it was just paper ribbon, c'mon! But after walking the full length of it back and forth, spectators rushed to see if it was legit by brushing their fingers over it. Makes me quiver to think that you could cut your feet on it *shudder*






Post for part 2 of Zhangjiajie may have to wait until I get out of China again since we'll be leaving Hong Kong back to Shenyang tomorrow. Hope to be back blogging with more interesting travel experiences soon!

Peace out!