Last Year, the smog in Beijing was quite heavy. I decided to escape to look for a blue sky and the fresh air. And we flew to Yunnan.
When I arrived at Kunming Airport, it was 8 pm already. Since I was in Yunnan, it would be a pity if not to eat Yunnan Rice Noodles. Only when I took my fist bite did I know those I had eaten before in Beijing could never be called the true Yunnan Rice Noodles.
On the first day, we came to Western Hill for a visit. The Western Hill is a range of 4 mountains stretching over 40 kilometers by the western shore of the Dianchi Lake. Its skyline resembles a Sleeping Beauty. All the way we saw the Dragon Gate, a grotto complex of rooms, sculptures, archways and tunnels chiseled along sheer cliff by local stonemasons from 1781 to 1853. Cornelia Rao is going to study the master degree of arts in history, so she was very excited at the sights of them.
After lunch, we took a coach to the Bamboo Temple, 12 kilometers northwest of Kunming.
It was the first temple built after Zen Buddhist was introduced to Yunnan early in 1279 when a Buddhist Master gave a Buddhist sutra to Hubelie Khan (the first emperor of the Yuan Dynasty).
The present Bamboo temple was rebuilt in the Guangxu Era (1833 to 1890). The entire architecture of the Bamboo Temple was built with the natural landscape of the hills. It consists of five ports, including Tianwang (Heaven King) Temple, Fanyin Pavilion (with 216 Arhats images), Tiantailai Pavilion (with 216 arhats images), Daxiong Temple (with 68 arhats) and Huayan Pavilion (rebuilt in October, 1989).
In the temple, there are many historic relics, such as the ” Tower Stele in Memory of the Death of the Eloquent Buddhist Master ” ” Imperial Edict Stele ” in Mongolian and Chinese languages as well as scenery spots, including peacock fir of Yuan Dynasty, Courtyard of Depository of Buddhist Texts and Cemetery of Monks. I was still wondering why so few people were visiting then. Due to different sense towards beauty? We also bought some food made in the temple. I t was very delicate and delicious.
On the second day, we visited Flowers and Birds Market. Flowers and Birds Market, along with old houses that are well kept in its immediate neighborhood, are now under Kunming’s protection plan as the Old Quarter. Beside flowers and birds, the market offers also state of art samples of traditional Chinese arts, wooden sculptures, bronze wares, China knots and more.