Travel Exposé: Yunnan Province (3) Simply Shangri-La (2),Pudacuo National Park 普达措公园

It’s that time of week again, and right off the back I want to extend a warm welcome to one and all. It has probably been a long week for us all, and so to kick off the weekend, this is my little gift to you.

IMG_0343When we last met, we had just arrived at a place almost synonymous with mystery and lore, Shangri-La. We discussed the practical aspects of getting there, certain transport tips, traversing Old Town and had also taken a hint at some of the things one may do whilst there( Refer to Travel Exposé: Simply Shangri-La(1) ). In this weeks edition, we shall take a quick look at one of the major natural attractions of the Shangri-La region, The Pudacuo NatioIMG_0400nal Park.

The massive Pudacuo National Park is a 5A Level park, but an even more ostentatious fact is that this National park is the oldest park in China, and by deduction, the first National Park in China. In order to gain an appreciation of the sheer majestic scale of this park let’s take a look at some basic statistics surrounding the area.

The Pudacuo Park, at its lowest point is situated 3500 meters above sea level and ascends to above 4159 meters at its highest. This, when paired with the fact that Pudacuo itself occupies a total surface area of 1313 square kilometres, its grandeur becomes impossible to understate.

HoweverIMG_0345, the true beauty of this park lies not in the sheer gargantuan size of environs, but instead in the bio-diversity which forms the literal life-blood of the Park. Pudacuo is the largest highland wetland and is quite unique in its existence. Due to the its altitude above sea level, and its location within the plateaus of Shangri-La, Puducuo National Park serves as a nucleus of bio-diversity and thus, houses many endemic species of plants and animals.

The 碧塔海(Bi Ta Hai)“Bita Sea” of Pudacuo is a perfect example of the importance of the park as a bio-nuclei, as within this extensive lake system exists the 碧塔重唇鱼( Bi Ta Zhong Chun Yu)Bita Zhong Chun Fish, which has existed there since the end of the forth Ice-Age.

IMG_0358Getting around the park is quite convenient and it is impossible to become lost, as the park has been split up into three distinct (walking) areas. Buses ferry visitors to the park to each of these three distinct areas, and as long as you follow the path there really is no danger of being lost, but remember to pack your walking shoes as traversing pedestrian attractions will require some physicality. (Re: The Weekly Funny: Survival in Shangri-La)

Finally, bear in mind that within the Park it is NOT allowed to walk on the grasslands, or marsh grass, as this can negatively impact the wildlife of the area. It goes without mentioning that regardless of how beautiful a photo that lush green bed of grass may appear to be, take into the consideration the delicate natural balance and your role in protecting it.

IMG_0555Pudacuo National Park, a place which makes perfectly apparent the elegantly intricate balance of the natural world, which not only helps us to recognise our place in this world, but also helps us to truly appreciate this sublime system. That is Pudacuo.

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