Monday, April 27, 2009

Kunming adventures part 1

I seized the opportunity to visit Kunming, China during the Easter week.  Coupled with cheap promo airfares as well as the chance to redeem my hotel stay with my credit card points,  I found myself in Kunming.  This is the place for pu erh tea.  I want to drown myself in pu erh and hope to fill my whole luggage with tea.

My first encounter with tea was on the flight there.  The air stewardess was promoting a famous branded perfume scented with green tea.  Wow.....I would like to announce that I am thinking of pu erh perfume, ripe and raw tea for the special occasion.  Use liberally and your body should have that teapot glow.  

Wikipedia describes  "Kunming is the political, economic, communications and cultural center of Yunnan, and is the seat of the provincial government. It is also home to several universities, museums, galleries and other important economic, cultural, and educational institutions. The headquarters of many of Yunnan's large businesses are in Kunming as well.  It covers an area of 21,501 km² and its urban area covers 6,200 km². Kunming has an estimated population of 5,740,000 including 3,055,000 in the urban area and is located at the northern edge of the large Lake Dian , surrounded by temples and lake-and-limetone hill landscapes."

Kunming is a modern city, with many western influences found in the city.  The famous french mega supermarket chain Carrefour has 7 outlets in this city.  Thats where I got the pu erh cake dessert in box. Its, to me, taste more like candy than tea, but its fun to eat.  Fast foods like KFC and Macdonalds are also easily found in the city.  New buildings are being built at a super rapid pace.  However there are still pockets of old Kunming still existing side by side with the modern architecture.   Tea wholesale centers are an example.  

The short video shows a local tai chi  exercise by the locals in downtown Kunming on early morning Sunday.

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