Countryside Cycling, China-style

The night before I arrived in Dali, some light research from the hostel had me brimming with excitement at the thought of renting a bicycle – after a few days of straight bus and train rides, I desperately needed to move my legs!

First thing in the morning, I rented a cheap city bike and headed towards Erhai Lake, an alpine fault lake with stunning views which I planned to visit en route to Xizhou, a nearby town where I’d made lunch plans with a friend of a friend. The map told me it would take 30 minutes to arrive (by car).

An hour tops by bike, I figured.

…..Three hours later, I’d snapped about 100 photos and was well on my way to being sunburnt, which is something of a rarity for melanin-rich Asian complexion. Apparently the path along the lake is the extremely scenic route.

But who could argue with this?

I can’t tell you how many times I had to stop and squeal to myself “OHHHMMYYYGAAWWWD THIS IS SO PRETTY” *click click click*

Talking out loud to absolutely no one, I was soon audibly lamenting my decision to not shell out the extra money to rent the motorized scooter (or pack backup sunscreen) as fellow tourists whizzed by.

By the time I’d arrived to Xizhou some 2 hours later, I was warmly greeted by two (very patient) former Prince-in-Asia fellows at the gorgeously situated Linden Centre. Highly recommend this route for anyone visiting the area. But learn from me and rent the motorized scooter!

Top down view of the day’s humble transport

More gorgeous sunny views of bright green algae blooms over Erhai Lake. A couple in wedding attire posed nearby with the same backdrop.

Farmers harvesting onions (so I was told) near the Linden Centre against an endless blue sky