China welcomes Lisa & George travel blog

Three Gorges Dam

The locks that we will cruise through

The Ba Tribe culture

Happy Birthday Deena! We celebrated your birthday, before you were awake, so I guess in China you are 12 hours older, HA! Well we have not made it to the morning exercise class of Tai Chi, but we always seem to make it to breakfast, go figure! This morning we attended a presentation on the construction of the Three Gorge Dam. George was all over this. After lunch, we docked in the town of Yichang, which has grown into a large city due to the relocation of many of the farmers from the construction of the Three Gorges Dam. We loaded a bus and took a 40 minute ride through the country side to the dam. The Chinese are definitely focusing on making this area into a tourist attraction. They have installed several escalators to take the tourists to the observation deck of the dam. From that vantage point one can see the 5 locks and the largest hydro dam in the world. It was impressive and George was amazed on how much power it's capable of producing. I found the locks intriguing. We will only need to go through 4 of locks this evening, because the water level is so high. Viking added a tour to our itinerary today, since we missed seeing the local school children. We continued up the river by bus and the boat followed us. The bus ride was a challenge as it climbed the mountain side on narrow roads that winded through little farm villages. Dogs, roosters and children were playing in the road, which just made the drive a little more exciting. We safely arrived at the local village, where we took a 2 mile stroll along a jungled path and learned the history and culture of the Ba people. It was humid but beautiful and well worth the walk. We reloaded the boat just below the Three Gorge Dam and entered the locks at 10:00. We shared each lock with 3 barges. It was a tight fit. In 12 minutes we went up 50 meters, then moved to the next lock. Waiting for the doors to open and close took longer than the rising of the water. We were able to touch the lock wall from our veranda, but when George tried to write his initials on the wall, it was too slimy! We went to bed with two more locks to pass through. This was a great day, we took in a lot of information and sites.

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