The Stone Forest is located in Kunming, Yunnan, renowned as “the first world wonder”.It’s one of the China best destinations, along with the Forbidden City, Terra-Cotta Warriors and Guilin landscape.
I learned very little before I came there and was curious how the Stone Forest came into existence. Selina, our tour guide from China holidays told that the Stone Forest was truly a forest made up of stones. It belonged to Karst topography.
In the Stone Forest areas, a host of stone columns poured into the sky. When we entered the Stone Forest Park, Chinse words “Shilin” came into our sight. Selina said they were written by Longyun, the former Yunnan provincial governor. There were many handwritings from celebrities, adding cultural atmosphere to the natural landscape.
We firstly arrived at Greater Stone Forest (Da Shilin). Inside it, I felt as if were in a bizarre fairyland. The stone formations standing still resembled a variety of things such as ancient fortresses, birds, beasts, flowers, trees, human beings, and whatever else one can imagine.
Then was Lesser Stone Forest (Xiao Shilin). The most fantastic ones were “The Cluster of Pinnacles Propping up the Sky” and “The Stone Singing Praises of Plums”.
The Outer Stone Forest (Wai Shilin) was gifted with myriad of stone peaks of various shapes. The Lion Hill resembles a squatting male lion on a height.
Among all , the Rock of Ashima impressed me most. The rock of Ashima resembled a girl of the Sani people, a branch of the Yi ethnic group, with a kerchief on her head, and a bamboo basket on her back. Ashima was a beautiful girl in a Sani folk tale. She was a symbol of matchmaker who can bring happy life for the Sani people.
The tour was a hurried one but I have experienced the magic and mystery of the Stone Forest. It certainly lives up to its name” the first world wonder.”