Tuesday, September 20, 2016

The Breathtaking Zhangye Danxia Landform.


After lunch, we first made a pit stop to use the public toilet. As Mal describes it, it was the Step to Urinary Disappointment - her way of describing a toilet that is well, unpleasant to use because of the smell and dirty floor. I shall describe no more. You can imagine it. The rest of this blog posting will seem so much nicer after this unpleasant start :-)

We then piled back in the van for the hour long drive to our final sightseeing destination of the day.....the place that I have been waiting to come to for years.....literally years and that which I could not believe I would actually have opportunity to visit on this trip - the Zhangye Danxia Landform.

As we arrived into the parking lot, I immediately noticed all the large tour buses parked in a corner of the lot. My heart sank. The place would be crowded.


Cathy got us our entry tickets and we boarded the shuttle bus that took us to our first viewing stop. 




We had to walk up a steep hill to get to the viewing platforms.




As I arrived at the top of the platform at Stop #1, I was stunned by the magnificent view of the mountains.  The colors and patterns on the rocks were absolutely mind boggling!  This landscape is so stunning and I have dreamt for so long to come here that I make absolutely no apologies for the seemingly ridiculous number of photos that I have included in this post. 




You could clearly see the rock striations that reflect the upheaval that took place millenia ago.  The colors are the result of minerals leaching up through the surface.  Unbelievable sight!






The four of us soon split up though every now and again, I would cross paths with them.

And we had our photo ops.


The Fabulous Four!

Taken by Yim who is a very talented photographer in her own right.  We have much in common :-)




No doubt the place was crowded with people but it's such a massive place that you don't feel hemmed in by people. At times, I would have to wait a few seconds to make my way to the railing to take a photo but other than that, there was plenty of open space to accommodate for all the visitors there.










Cathy gave us 30 minutes to enjoy Stop #1 before we boarded the bus to Stop #2.

Mal posing for a selfie.  She can't escape the countless requests....not even on the bus!



A set of steps led up to the viewing platform at Stop #2.



It was more incredible views of the gorgeous mountains.




I had to take a panoramic view.









And more of Mal posing for a photo. I love how the woman on her right felt comfortable enough to put her hand on Mal's shoulder.




From Stop #2, we made our way to Stop #3 which I thought had the most spectacular landscape views of all the stops.  I think I took the most photos here.
















Stop #4 was the last stop.  After the views at Stop #3, the ones at Stop #4 somehow didn't seem quite as impressive though if these were the only images you ever saw of the Zhangye Danxia Landform, your jaw would drop!


















After Stop #4, it was all over.  I had realized another travel bucket list item and I was on a high from taking in all the incredible views I had just seen.  I will never forget this place!