AS A WAY OF LIFE

nomads, writer, speaker, photographer

CHINA YUNAN

Once again, we dive into the magnitude of the Chinese Empire.

After crossing the border, it seems the distances are dilated, as if there are calibrated on a different scale. However, this time, China shows us a new facet of her face, we are cycling in the heart of ancient traditions of multiple ethnic minorities, crossing small villages on a road in poor condition. We are in the heart of the mountains in Yunnan. The landscape is made of valleys and mountains becoming higher and higher as we keep heading north. They are the typical images of Yunnan, mounts covered with a dense jungle and hiding in the veil of mist. A place where green mountains and peaks undulate out of sight.

A first wave of freedom takes us over the rubber plantation, having the feeling we are flying over these endless forests of hevea, as we cycle on the freeway that crosses over the landscape with  bridges and tunnels. Then we enter splendid tea plantations, on a gigantic plateau where the trees  streak the scenery in a dark green. We are in the heart of one of the most ancient Chinese tradition, the art of drinking tea. Tea that will remain the link between us and the land, us and the Chinese population during all our time there.

In the heart of the Pu'Er, its fermented and earthy taste will become a symbol of our passage in Yunnan. We are cycling on a mythical road, that surprises us with its wild and vivifying nature. We are following part of the ancient tea horse road. A road used for centuries, the tea from Yunnan was brought by porters and donkeys through the high plateau and Himalayan acmes to Sichuan and Tibet. A road linking the tropical zone to the forbidden city of Lhasa.