Difference between revisions of "Jinghong"

From Wikitravel
Jump to: navigation, search
(Buy)
(added listing eat)
Line 52: Line 52:
 
*<buy name="Thailand Avenue (Tai Guo Jie)" alt="" address="" directions="" phone="" url="" hours="" price="" lat="" long="">A newly built large open market and Thai themed stores centered around a stage. There are at least two bars on premise. Free live music at night at around 7 pm.</buy>
 
*<buy name="Thailand Avenue (Tai Guo Jie)" alt="" address="" directions="" phone="" url="" hours="" price="" lat="" long="">A newly built large open market and Thai themed stores centered around a stage. There are at least two bars on premise. Free live music at night at around 7 pm.</buy>
 
*<buy name="Wangtianshu Restaurant & Deli" alt="" address="17 Mengzhe Road" directions="Opposite 'xiao cai guan' or 小菜馆对面" phone="0086-6912121546 or 0086-18787934545" url="www.wangtianshudeli.com" hours="11:00-23:00" price="" lat="" long="">In their deli section, Wangtianshu offers bread. Combined with a selection of cheeses and Italian cold cuts, olives and olive oil and a broad selection of wines, this is the place to stock up on picnic fare for a trek or a day in one of Jinghong's many parks.
 
*<buy name="Wangtianshu Restaurant & Deli" alt="" address="17 Mengzhe Road" directions="Opposite 'xiao cai guan' or 小菜馆对面" phone="0086-6912121546 or 0086-18787934545" url="www.wangtianshudeli.com" hours="11:00-23:00" price="" lat="" long="">In their deli section, Wangtianshu offers bread. Combined with a selection of cheeses and Italian cold cuts, olives and olive oil and a broad selection of wines, this is the place to stock up on picnic fare for a trek or a day in one of Jinghong's many parks.
 +
*<buy name="eat" alt="" address="" directions="" phone="" url="" hours="" price="" lat="" long=""></buy>

Revision as of 06:15, 16 April 2013

Jinghong (景洪; Jǐnghóng) is the capital of Xishuangbanna in southern Yunnan. It is a hub for Chinese package tourists as well as for travellers passing between China and Laos. A prime area for backpackers, it is an interesting alternative to Laos or northern Thailand. It is an easy overland trip from Laos and it is also possible to get there by boat from Thailand without obtaining a Lao visa.

Get in

By plane

Jinghong's recently updated airport (IATA: JHG) fields daily flights from Kunming and a few other cities in China such as Chengdu and Shanghai. Currently China Eastern flies twice weekly between Bangkok (IATA: BKK) and Jinghong. Note that when booking a plane ticket to Jinghong, if it is not listed as "Jinghong" it may be listed as "Xishuangbanna".

By bus

There are over a dozen sleeper buses from Kunming daily, from around 9am to 10pm. They cost ¥150-260, depending on the coach quality. The bus takes around 8 hours, and will travel over some bumpy dirt roads. Note that it may be a "sleeper bus" (lying down) even during the day.

From Yuanyang coming down to Jinghong is a bit more tricky. First option is from Xinjie or Nansha you backtrack to Jianshui (3-4 hours) and take a sleeper bus to Jinghong from there (¥177, 12 hours, at 1330 and 1630). Second option, again from Xinjie city you can take a bus to Luchun (¥38, 5 hours), spent the night there and catch the one and only Luchun to Jinghong bus at 8.00am the next morning (¥120, 12 hours). Be aware that the second option will take you through very bumpy, rough and many times unpaved roads crossing endless mountains, rice terraces, banana plantations and little villages so its not for the fainthearted but the scenery is stunning. Landslides are often and many times small streams go through the unpaved road so its not recommended during the rainy reason, you might get stuck in the middle of nowhere due to a blocked road. Furthermore there will be a few police checkpoints where your passport will be checked but its very fast and hassle free.

This is the first big city for travelers coming from Laos. This is the first place with banks that accept foreign cards, but most travelers will have to change buses in Mengla to get here. A direct bus from the border town of Mohan takes 3 hours.

By boat

Ferry trips along the Mekong to Chiang Saen (on Thailand's side of the Golden Triangle) are around ¥800, although these are currently suspended due to the Thai military incident on the Mekong in October 2011, where the discovery of murdered Chinese nationals on a boat with amphetamine tablets has irritated the Chinese government. No Laos/Myanmar visa necessary, but very irregular, leaving only several times a month as of early November 2010. They leave around 7am and take a full day (see http://www.maekhongtravel.com/en/). Slower 3-4 day trips on cargo boats may be available but are currently limited to just two passengers per boat.

Get around

The few limited interesting parts of town are definitely walkable.

Jinghong has plenty of tuk-tuks or auto-ricksaws about. Hire these as a slightly cheaper way to get between places, but more than a kilometer or two and your butt might be sore all day.

Taxis run about ¥5-15 to places in town.

Down by the Lancang jiang (or Mekong river) it may be possible to hire a boat for a bit of river cruising.

See

  • Minority villages. Scattered outside town are both minority villages and "minority villages". The ones in quotes are stylized reconstructions featuring song-and-dance numbers for Chinese package tourists. Approach with caution. The Dai Minority Park 傣族园 in Ganlanba (橄榄坝)(aka Menghan 勐罕) is the most famous of all. Is comprises several small villages and it is better to explore it on bike. Lonely Planet year 2006 book claims that you can rent a bike near the entrance, but this place doesn't exist anymore (Feb 2013) ¥100 - full-price ticket ; students enjoy half-price discount. Water-splashing festival is held twice a day and is really popular with Chinese tourists. Except for a few beautiful temples inside, there is not much to see -- it just feels like the rest of Southern China.
  • Botanical Garden. -1800. Mixed reviews from foreign tourists, but admired by Chinese tourists entrance ticket-¥80, discounted price for students -- ¥50.
  • Pottery Factory.
  • Dai Handycrafts.
  • Mengle Temple, Nanlianshan Mountain. The biggest temple in Xishuangbanna. In the southern area in Jionghong, you can hire bicycle to go there. ¥120.
  • Peacock Lake Park, crossroads of Mengle Dadao and Xuanwei Dadao. A pleasant "park" with an artificial lake and a fountain. If its not raining, during the evening check the corner just outside the park on the roundabout, locals gather and dance on the open for many hours. FREE.
  • Manting Park, No.35 Manting Road (on the southeast of the city, around 1km from the center), 06912161451, [1]. 7.30am-5.30pm. Another pleasant park which is divided in eight parts, the main entrance, the National Cultural Plaza, the Tropical Orchid Garden, the Peacock Garden, the Life-leaving Lake, the Buddhism Cultural Quarter, the Planting Memorial Quarter and the Dai Cultural Teahouse. There are extra performances of singing, dancing and fire (which cost extra as well), check with the counter in the entrance for times and fees. ¥40 entrance to the park, performances extra.

Do

  • Dai Newyear. If one is in the town during the Thai (Dai in that area) New year there is a massive celebration with Dragon boating and capped off with a massive city wide water fight on the final day of celebration.
  • Riverfront Walks. The town is on the Lancang River, to most Westerners better known as the Mekong. There is excellent walking along the riverfront.

Buy

Bank of China with 24 hours ATM is available a few minutes walk from the bus terminal. Cross the road and turn right as you leave the terminal. There are other banks in the area as well.

The usual Chinese tourist gimmicks, somehow more here than anywhere else in China. Local Dai produced items also available.

  • Night market Xishuangbanna Park, On the righ side of the New Bridge. Every night there is a big night market in Xishuangbanna Park just on the right of the New Bridge. You can buy almost anything here and there are endless street food stalls.
  • Thailand Avenue (Tai Guo Jie). A newly built large open market and Thai themed stores centered around a stage. There are at least two bars on premise. Free live music at night at around 7 pm.
  • Wangtianshu Restaurant & Deli, 17 Mengzhe Road (Opposite 'xiao cai guan' or 小菜馆对面), 0086-6912121546 or 0086-18787934545, [2]. 11:00-23:00. In their deli section, Wangtianshu offers bread. Combined with a selection of cheeses and Italian cold cuts, olives and olive oil and a broad selection of wines, this is the place to stock up on picnic fare for a trek or a day in one of Jinghong's many parks. *eat.