China Travel Tips

Reflections on Travel in China

Monday, January 21, 2008

Dr. Ho of Chinese Traditional Medicine fame

If you are interested in traditional Chinese medicine, the best source of information is Dr. Ho Shi-Xiu, a Naxi nationality physician with a Ph.D from Nanjing University. At over 90 and retired, Dr. Ho lives in Bai Sha village outside of LiJiang in Yunnan province with his wife and son who works with him in retirement. Dr. Ho speaks 5 languages including fluent English, is extremely spry for his age and loves having people come to visit him at his home and small office. 60 Minutes,t.v. program did a segment on him  and National Geographics is doing a story on his life. LiJinag located north of Kunming in Yunnan province has become a popular tourist spot located in the mountains at 7000 feet above sea level and a nice cool spot during the hot summer months to visit. Snow Dragon Mountain and Lugu Lake are just two of the places to visit while touring the area. LiJiang is one of my favorite small cities in China which is the home to the Naxi, Dai and Bai nationalities and not far from Dali or the Leaping Tiger Gorge of the upper Yangtze River. In southwest China it is a great place to visit during the heat of the summer or the pleasant days of spring and fall.  Be sure to visit his newly opened Museum in the village managed by his son.
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Monday, January 7, 2008

Lugu Lake

There are only a few Matriarchal societies left in the world. The only one in Asia are the Mosuo people that live around Lugu Lake in Yunnan province of China. I visited them for the third time this past fall and find that life has much improved for them since my last visit and new modern hotels are now available. They live around a beautiful lake surrounded by mountains at 10,000 feet above sea level. The women live together in a compound. If there is a committed relationship, the man often comes at night and stays but returns to his own home during the day. There is no recognition of "father" in their language, only "uncle". There is no divorce since there are no marriages. Each evening there is a performance of their music and dance at a large hall mostly for the few tourists that come. During the day you can take a dug out canoe with one of the women and men out to an island where there is a Monastery and monks living. If you wish you can even rent a dug out canoe on your own and go to the other side of the lake and villages. For more information on getting to Lugu lake which is about 7 hours by car from LiJiang, contact me at