I had always wanted to see the famous sunrise (日照金山) of Meili Snow Mountain (梅里雪山) and it was at the top in the to-do list of my Yunnan trip. But because of the heavy snow and rain in Yunnan , the road to the snow mountain was blocked on the first 7 days of our trip.
One can find many travel agents selling local tour packages in Lijiang Old Town. So, in the first morning since our arrival, we went into the offices of these agents, chatted with many of them and tried to learn more about the current situation of Meili. We talked with no less than five travel agents. All of them, but one, told us that while they were not 100% sure, it should be alright to go to Meili Snow Mountain on the following day.
“Of course, safety is our first priority. If the weather doesn’t allow, we can’t help but make the most suitable arrangement accordingly. But the road to Meili should be ready in these two days….So, if you pay now, you can join our tour as soon as tomorrow…” all of the travel agents said similarly, except one.
And that exceptional one shot us with a big NO.
XiaoWu (小武) just plainly said, “Nope! And probably won’t have any as well for the coming few days. The road is blocked. And it’s too dangerous to go anyways…”
XiaoWu and XiaoMo (小莫, his wife) of Alading (阿拉丁) were the last travel agents we went to, for we believed that we had found a reliable source for information and professional help that we needed.
There are many travel agents in Lijiang Old Town.
After confirming on the impossibility of going to Meili on the next few days, Yik and I decided to go to Luku Lake (瀘沽湖), and were considering the tour package Alading offered. But, as funny as it may sound, XiaoWu suggested us not to join his tour. Through our conversation, XiaoWu had learned more about us and our travel style, and he believed that we would enjoy the freedom that traveling by ourselves brings more than joining a tour. He said, “It is quite simple to go around Luku Lake. I am sure you two can handle it. If you like, I can help you book the bus tickets.” And he did so with no extra handling fee, commission, etc.
Later, when we wanted to go to Meili Snow Mountain in the last minutes, we also called XiaoWu and XiaoMo for their comments on weather and road condition, as well as referral for driver to Meili (they referred us to a very good Tibetan driver – 扎西培楚).
Now, thinking more about this, I have just realized that Yik and I actually hadn’t bought any travel packages and such from XiaoWu and XiaoMo, but only kept calling them up, asking for advices and help. And they were just so nice, treated us more like their friends than customers, and gave us help and suggestions anyways.
Thank you and best wishes to this newlyweds!
Business card of XiaoMo (小莫) and XiaoWu (小武)