Shaxi – Stepping Back into the Past on the Ancient Road to India

This tiny village was once an important point on the Tea-Horse Route to India. It lies about 120 kilometers northwest of Dali off of the road to Shangrila. It was once a major hub for the traders and its preservation makes it a great time capsule to explore for a couple days. The old buildings, narrow cobblestone streets, ancient courtyards, the historical placement, good weather, clear skies also make this an ideal location for filming period Chinese movies.

We stayed at the Shaxi Miss May Hotel.  I would highly recommend it.  For information on the hotel, please visit here.  Great location, very quaint and very kind lady that runs the joint.   We even had guard dogs watching over us.

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Where are we off to Aimee?

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By horse, by mule or by foot is the best way to travel.

The courtyards are rather spectacular.  This is the Xingjiao Si Temple,  the only Ming-dynasty Bai Buddhist temple.   DSC09165DSC09010DSC09009

Across the courtyard is the Three Terraced Pavilion which has a prominent theatrical stage which is still in use today.

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Oh look, there is a guy playing guitar.

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After a nice conversation, guess who ends up serenading the small group of tourists?

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Aimee watches from the comfort of the cafe across the courtyard.

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As this is a trading town, the market is incredibly lively.  I thought of this place as sort of Costco out on the street.  They had everything you could imagine.   The streets were lined for at least a kilometer and a half filled with smells and colors of all kinds.

These are traditional Bai people.  They wear incredibly vibrant clothes. DSC09125DSC09123

This machine is making crushed red pepper. DSC09118

This friendly lady is mass producing tea from the leaf crushing machine.

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Aimee gets surrounded by a herd of dogs.

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Many canine characters roaming this little village.

The town is filled with distinctive artwork on the walls.

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The culinary experience is a big part of being out in China.  Eagerly awaiting dinner….

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Lunch is served.  Fresh vegetables, pork, peppers and local river fish; all made fresh to order.

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More splendid delicacies that were experienced in Shaxi:

After a long day of exploring it is back to the local pub for meeting fellow explorers and sharing our unique stories.   Found a guitar and started doing what I do best.

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Our two days in Shaxi was a pleasant experience steeped in culture, history, food and community.

The journey northward continues….

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