Destinations Magazine

Zhangjiajie: Caves, Lakes & Red Stone Forests...

By Josephharrison1990 @JTAH_1990

Zhangjiajie had two more gems to show me, another point of interest would stop me in my tracks the following day. Going underground allowed me to see something truly technicolour, I wasn't ready for those caves! Hearing a love song or two, a truly gorgeous lake was served up! Guzhang Red Stone Forest? Zhangjiajie knew better, she saved some lovely sights for last! Hun! 

Zhangjiajie: Caves, Lakes & Red Stone Forests...

A miraculous masterpiece under the ground? Yes, Zhangjiajie's 'Huanglong Caves' saw me lost for words, telling you the truth that doesn't happen very often! Taking things at a slower pace, it was a blessing to meet my tour guide a little later that morning, the mountains had been served with the final sights ready to be clocked. I had no idea what to expect, I actually didn't realize I was going to be visiting the caves in question. Taking our time, it was great to find an iced coffee first the first time since leaving Changsha! Heading into the darkness saw me feeling claustrophobic because the surface above me had my mind playing tricks on me! It wasn't long before those karst wonders came into view, I wasn't prepared for all of the colours! Stalagmite, she better don't! Well, she did! Those naturally formed karst wonders had me transfixed, not forgetting the subterranean pools adding to the cool atmosphere. The coolness felt within the caves made the summer heat feel like a million miles away! A boat ride for me? I had to share! 

That chilled underground water ride allowed me to pass through a series of mysterious looking settings. The contrasts were limitless, no corner looked the same because the karst deposits all possessed a different flex. Disembarking the boat was fine until I saw all of the stairs, if truth be told those stairs weren't bad because the caves were super quiet, I was able to walk at my own pace. Several photo opportunities were presented to me, I did not fancy paying for my own photo when I could take it for free with my iPhone. Not a chance! Towards the end of that cave visit, it was truly the best when I saw those bright colours, such an electric view was presented to me. The dramatic nature of that lit up focal point sure impressed me much, I loved the vista that cave projected. The water from the pools reflected effortlessly from the top of the stairs, I had climbed up a fair bit to see the full effect of the colourful stalactites. Seeing the light of day was such a bore because those scorching temperatures did the most! Sure, those caves were major!

Zhangjiajie: Caves, Lakes & Red Stone Forests...

Baofeng Lake really knocked the ball out of the park for me, now I wasn't aware during the time of my visit that the scenic area was man-made! Sure, I will get those facts straightened out, trust me I'm excited to do so! Loving the lack of crowds, the bus ride from the entrance to the boats impressed me much! Although, people really needed to stop acting like the next bus was the last one for all eternity! Babes, chill-out! Busy with my own observations, it didn't take me long until I saw Baofeng Lakes true colours in real-time motion! For a second time I was left speechless, Zhangjiajie really knew how to gag me! The lush greenery and rock formations had me fixated, the water stood still like the time during that moment. The commentary didn't bother me, my guide was able to translate bits and pieces but I was more about the view. A love song? Yes, at one of the lakeside booths, a young woman serenaded us with a bird calling-esque song! Would a potential suitor return the young Hunan maidens wishes? Baofeng Lake was my one and only! 

Right, please now let me add context to the gems of information that the internet has bestowed me. Initially the natural formations that surround the waters of Baofeng Lake started off as a tranquil gorge. The local people decided to flood the area to make a reservoir, creating this water saving haven allowed nature to play some tricks, several scenic spots were unknowingly created. With the unstoppable views and natural beauty, there's no wonder why this former gorge serves 'Baofeng Lake Realness' and so much more! For me, I snapped away like a paparazzo because those views were to die for, my final day in the area served two amazing scenes without warning. Salamander, who? I found a local anti-aging cream, paying with my WeChatPay QR Code didn't take a seconds thought because I wanted to look fresh. Yes, I swear by that cream and know where to get a refill! Leaving the lake behind, it was time for lunch because breakfast no longer sufficed. That afternoon I was able to take it easy before the following days departure. Bye, ZJJ! 

Zhangjiajie: Caves, Lakes & Red Stone Forests...

The time had come for me to leave Hunan's Zhangjiajie behind me, before I left the hotel I made sure that my National Day Golden Week holiday was booked up! Of course, before those holiday blues even popped up I had made sure October would see me visiting Seoul for the third time with Busan in the mix also! I wasn't playing around, I knew what I wanted to do and where I wanted to travel to! En route to Fenghuang City, after driving for what felt like two hours at least, we arrived at the 'Guzhang Red Stone Forest National Geopark' without much warning. I was quite relieved that the glass suspension bridge had been switched for this more 'down to earth' natural attraction. Getting to grips with the heat was not the one, I really wanted to reach Fenghuang to see the Ancient City so this visit to the forest would be brief. I appreciated the 'ancient fossils' with attention paid to the natural offerings, truly it was a sight to remember. I wasn't in the mood to stick around, I wanted to get my photos and then get out! It was very hot! 

Honestly, it was as if I was in a real-life Jurassic Park because the scenery had me wondering whether dinosaurs were lurking around the corner! That wasn't no question, I had those thoughts in my head and they were valid because that scenic area was serving jungle! I had to pinch myself because I was serving 'Indiana Jones Realness' with every step up and down those steep paths, I had already expressed that my adventurous side had been to new heights. David couldn't understand why I was hesitant to stay any longer at the Red Stone Forest, I expressed that I loved the stone formations but I felt burnt out from those mountain experiences. Nevertheless, I look back at my time at the Red Stone Forest with the experience validated and seen. Back on the road again, it was amazing to see the views for miles with a lot of Kiwi fruits up for grabs! One roadside seller had me in my feelings, she didn't use online platforms like 'Taobao', she was missing out on some much needed custom! Next, Fenghuang City called me!

Category Is... Jurassic Park Realness! 

Desperately Seeking Adventure

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