The Road to Everest

Day 19: Sunday 14 May 2006
May 15, 2006,

Day 19: Sunday 14 May 2006
Lhasa rest day

The Mitzi outside the Potala Palace
This morning we all had a much needed lie-in after two tough days to and from the Everest Base Camp.

The morning was spent by a few in the car park checking over their vehicles. The Holopainen’s were still having problems with their roof-rack and Jim Carr’s Land Rover Discovery was having problems with its ABS and traction control mechanisms but all seem to have now been sorted.

In the afternoon we had the opportunity to visit the Potala Palace, the famous Barkhor or pilgrim circuit around the Jokhang Temple. It was an impressive building with more than one thousand rooms (not that we visited all of them!). It was originally the centre of the Tibetan Government and the winter residence of the Dalai Lama. Construction of this immense building began in 1645 and took 50 years to complete. It is 13 storeys high and is located near to the Old Town where there are many small shops and stalls selling all manners of goods and souvenirs.

In the evening we all walked to a local restaurant and enjoyed a Tibetan singing and dancing show whilst tucking in to some very good food.

View over Lhasa

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Day 30: Thursday 25 May 2006
Zhaoqing – Splendid China, Shenzhen

On this our final day of the Great Tour of China 2006, we made a short journey mainly on expressway from Zhaoqing to the Splendid China Cultural Park in Shenzhen for the ceremonial finish.

May 26, 2006
Day 29: Wednesday 24 May 2006
Guilin - Zhaoqing

We left Gulin on smooth fast roads with wonderful views of the ‘eggbox’ type hills. These are hills of limestone which have eroded into shape over centuries covered in native vegetation and resembling very large teeth.

May 25, 2006
Day 28: Tuesday 23 May 2006
Kaili - Guilin

The agenda today was another long driving day to Guilin along a mixture of road surfaces: smooth main roads, bumpy secondary roads and some roads still under construction.

May 24, 2006
Day 27: Monday 22 May 2006
Huangguoshu Falls - Kaili

Before negotiating another day on the road, everyone spent a couple of hours today visiting China’s most scenic falls at Huangguoshu. Set against lush, local vegetation, the falls make up in beauty for what they lack in size.

May 23, 2006
Day 26: Sunday 21 May 2006
Kunming – Huangguoshu Falls

This morning we took the northern road from Kunming on a mix of main highway, dual carriageway and back roads. The first town we passed through was Quiyang en route to Honggu, a large town with coal mining and steel production as it’s main industries.

May 23, 2006