Lush green rice fields as far as the eye can see. We ride in the hilly landscape of Yuanyang, 80 km southwest of Jianshui. Over the centuries, the Hani minority terraced rice fields created. It is not only about a valley, but an area of ca. 12.500 ha with a distinctive topography. At the top of the mountain slopes, the villages have settled, while the rice terraces to extend deep into the valleys. A direct bus from Jianshui from there is not, so we or several times the bus. Must change Minivan. Our accommodation, das „Timeless Hostel Yuanyangʱ??, located in the village Pugaolao and offers a wonderful wide view down to the rice fields. From the rooftop terrace, we can see, go up as fog and clouds in the snail's pace of the Valley. Night dive the large moon behind the mountain ridge on. Even a few stars are visible. There seems to be no better place to relax..
The charming, native of Shanghai Proprietor our Guesthouses lived here for two years. She had immediately fallen in love with the village, tells us, and has remained. Whether there are problems between Han- and Hani Chinese admit, we want to know. This is denied with a smile. All residents are always friendly and very helpful. Both we can only confirm to our short stay. Again and again come by villagers, keep a longer and whistles, Children romp through the "lobby". Maybe they know, that there is to buy expensive chocolate here.
Yuanyang counts next to Yading Nature Reserve to the Chinese top destinations in the South West of the country, for which we are ready, Shelling out money. But we're lucky. The required 100 RMB per person must be paid only, To enter special viewing platforms, what we do without. Most visitors come in the spring in the region, when the terraces are filled with water and the sunrise- should and sunset a great game with lots of light reflections show. Now in June, the rice fields are against deep green. It does not happen a lot. Only now and then a peasant saunters along the terrace limits and controls the water supply. Here and there, grazing water buffalo along the way. Most of its kind to be brought to the higher pastures at this time. Pugaolao hat, like the other villages in the area, a few small shops with irregular opening times, where we drink at high prices and sweet, can buy soft flatbread. Milk and fresh fruits are not to our regret on offer.
Photo gallery Hani Village
We decide, to make a long walk through the rice terraces and get from our hostess a self-drawn map. The path should lead us around six hours from the small village Quanfuzhang 全 福 庄 by rice terraces and several small villages and finally ends in the small town Shengcun 胜 村, where we can buy on the market fruit and milk. A minivan drives us to the starting point of the hike and soon we find ourselves on a path surrounded by rice paddies and marvel at the flying dragonflies and butterflies. Stones as a guide line the path and show us the direction to the nearest village. Women hauling full, filled with dry twigs baskets past us up upwards high into the village. Eye contact is avoided from their side always, as we notice.
Suddenly there is a huge water buffalo with a smooth, gray skin in the middle of the narrow path, munches relish lush green grasses and obstructed us with his thick body the way. Right there is a steep slope to the next rice terrace, left steeply down, what should we do? We are approaching cautiously to within a few meters, when the monster finally turns and comes to meet us. Directed The threatening curved horns at us it begins even at, menacing snort and hiss. We hurry back soft. Here we will not get, the path is simply too narrow, to get past a certain distance of the mighty animal… There's only one: We turn, climb to the higher ground rice field and behind the buffalo back down, to continue our way.
Photo gallery rice terraces Yuanyang
A little later, we reach a village, which is one big construction site. Few roads are concreted. Water lines may seem to give it, but are defective. A black liquor passes over the muddy road. An old woman washes On a corner in front of her house her face, at another children play in the dirt. As in Pugaolao run poultry animals and black domestic pigs around freely. Only water buffaloes and dogs be leashed. Seeing the duck gets Sven appetite. But we must continue.
On the way we remember, that the exact location of places are not consistent on our map with the directions and we went in the wrong direction for some time. The evening sun bathes the mountain slopes in a gentle light. The shadows lengthen. We walk uphill. Top Somewhere there must be a paved road, from where we get further, wherever we find ourselves. GPS does not work here.
In the next village we achieve nothing with our Chinese hiking map, let alone in English. Again, only the clucking chickens, somewhere rattles a moped. After another sweat, it's still uphill, we finally reach a concrete road. Now we come faster and the nearest village appears to be greater. Again, hauling heavy women, filled with stones baskets on their backs to a construction site, while men together rooms at a shell bamboo poles to a scaffold. We check with a Chinese after the Way Shengcun. “This is Shengcun!”, he replies. Over there is the main street…
To our delight, we discover there several small fruit stands. Although the choice is varied, Sets the quality to be desired. Schrumpelige mangoes and dragon fruit are next to brown bananas and apples from last season. Only the covered with dust peaches and grapes look relatively fresh out, but unfortunately only washable. Due to the Chinese fertilizer, we do not prefer it,. Right next door, we show the seller a photo of a Chinese Milk Carton. Without further ado, she disappears into the back of her shop, and comes with a large box full back with me pack. We propose to cover us, and for the next three days with still a further beverages. Obviously delighted with the "Great Shopping" We receive free grapes, which unfortunately moldy the next day.
We enter happy about our purchases when we heard a loud horn back onto the narrow road. From a car window looks of dark curly head of our Guesthouse-owner. What a surprise! Whether we want to go back with her? Since we do not say no yet! Thanking, not to have to organize a minivan after the long hike, We climb and learn on the way back a few more details about the area.
Thus the villages are supported by the government only for about a year with funds and it is being built everywhere. Tourism is becoming an increasingly important source of income expectant. But how much of the high entrance fee, that pays a tourist for special prospects in this region, really matters in the villages - we can only guess. Now, in June, but was off-season and we are glad, not to be surrounded by masses. They still exist, the quiet places in China. One has to be just the right time in the right place…