We boarded our cruise ship Victoria Lianna for our much anticipated three day cruise
down the Yangtze River. After a few (a good few drinks) in the Yangtze Bar we settled in for the night in our great little cabins. It was so nice to leave balcony door open and watch the world (China) glide by. The first tag team took on David (guide) in a drinking session, looking at likes of Gary and crew they were unsuccessful as David bounce up full of beans and they were a little worse for wear.
|Our cozy comfortable cabin|
It would have been worth being up at three in the morning to see Louella headed to the bar in her robe looking for Gary who she was certain must have fallen overboard somewhere.
|David in strife following big night|
Breakfast was enjoyed by most of the group with exception of a couple people who chose extra rest over the meal. Almost all the group set
on the guided tour to the ghost city with all reports pointing to fascinating experience.
For those of us who remained on board it was chance to catch up on some rest and try and ward off the colds that are starting appear among the group.
In the afternoon we all headed out on deck for the viewing of the first two of the three gorges. Qutang Gorge and Wu Gorge. Qutang Gorge is the shortest (5 miles), narrowest (500 feet), and most dramatic. The 25-mile long Wu Gorge is known for its quiet beauty, forest-covered mountains, and cliffs so sheer that the sun barely penetrates the precipices. It was a sight to be seen, this afternoon also featured the captains reception where we were treated to canapés and drinks. Dinner was uneventful and team two took up the running with David who saw them off in style. Not sure who was in this group but there was a fair amount of mixing drinks during the evening.
The scenery from the deck or the cabin was forever changing and it was hard not to just sit and gaze out but there was always something to do. The only problem some many things happening little time to just sit on the balcony and enjoy the passing views.
Another feature was the trip was transferring to another vessel for a relaxing excursion through the attractive gorges of Shennong Stream. Once at top of gorge we watched traditional dancing and singing before returning to our cruise ship. This was the most amazing place and the people living here must be very strong as the terrain would make every day activities almost impossible. Needless to say the mountains were dotted with homes, power lines and roads. How they ever put this infrastructure is beyond belief.
Back on board it was time for a rest before a practice for our cabaret act. It was decided that the group would sign G’day G’day with some actions and limited props. It was decided that Sharpy would give a demonstration of an auction with our group acting as buyers. This went over well and I think Don (with David interpreting) introduction as to why we were in China was well received and gave some context to our performance. There will be no Oscars, awarded for the performance but we had a lot of fun and certainly entertained the other passengers.
After the performance it was time for us to go through the locks at the dam, this was sensational and we all stayed out on deck for the whole process, which takes around 4 hours to be completed. In the meantime it was the final tag team turn to take on poor David, pleased to say he withstood phase three but I think his stamina was starting to wane, another night on board and I think they would have had him.
|After 3 big nights finally
wearing him down – Needed 1 more night
Up and at ‘em next morning, albeit a little more slowly for those who partied on until well into the night. We tramped off the boat again to bus over to the three gorges dam for another tour- another highlight to add to the long list of highlights on this tour. What an amazing feat to build such a structure, although we could see it all that well as it was a very misty (smoggy) day but to see the lock system that we came through during the night and see the dam itself was all I expected and much much more.
Back on board for lunch before disembarking for a bus ride to Yichang airport for the short flight to Shanghai, the last leg of the main tour. Eleven members of the group are travelling on to Beijing while eight of us are headed home after few days in Shanghai.