FREE TRIP: meeting the Gēlǎozú in Nuo City

Last week, some of the students visited the city of Chongqing, Nuo City and the Balahu Valley. Chongqing is a big and rising city in China. In its effort to promote tourism in this city, the municipality sponsors many trips to see the beautiful city, as well as its surrounding mountains and valleys.

At night, the lights of the skyline that are reflected in the river will leave you breathless. G-MEO students had the opportunity to go to one of these trips with students of different nationalities who are studying Chinese in Chongqing. There were students from Russia, Vietnam, Thailand, Germany and many more. The two days included a great hotel, food and entrance to the sights almost for free (~ $10).

The first destination was Nuo City, a beautiful place surrounded by mountains. Entering this city is only possible, when drinking a local beverage! Within this small city, the government provides the villagers with spaces for the sale of their merchandise and food.

Also, there is an attraction park (“Magic Island”). There is no doubt the students enjoyed it and felt like children again.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

At the dinner, they had the opportunity to witness an opera starring by Gēlǎozú group, one of the 56 ethnic groups recognized by the Chinese government. In this show, opera and meal are mixed together. First, the appetizers are served to you. Second, you get their special drink with some bread and third the main dish. While this is happening, the opera continues: acting, singing and dancing.
Very entertaining!

The opera ended with a dance around the fire, in which all the foreigners and the inhabitants of the village gathered and danced together around it. This was one of our best experiences!

The next day, the group visited the Puhua River and Balahu Valley, where we had the opportunity to take the boat and meet several caves and very peculiar rock formations. The valley has a waterfall and green water that matches the color of the mountains around it. Also, they found the famous glass bridge, which you can cross to see the Abysmal Valley. Unfortunately, they did not have the opportunity to cross it since it was raining, and it would be too dangerous. However, Puhua River offered us this hanging bridge instead:

Without hesitation, I can say China is one of the best countries I’ve ever met. The beauties, the culture and the exquisite food that you can find throughout your stay are amazing! Also, knowing and learning about the minorities and sharing a special moment with them was one of the best highlights of this trip.

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