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World's biggest destination

zupermaus

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The biggest range of topographies in one country, set to become the biggest tourism destination within a decade. Enjoy the armchair travelling, put your feet up n take your time (there are over 100 pics), and do read the info: CHINA. not just cities No1. out of 17. 1.TEMPERATE FORESTS deciduous
Shennongjia, home to the mythical Wildman (read: Chinese Bigfoot)
Jiuzhaiguo
the worlds largest reforrestation programs
temperate rainforests
2.DESERT (sand desert, oases, rock deserts)
Dunhuang, with the worlds tallest dunes, thousands of years in the making, 1500ft high:
Shipton's Arch, recently 'rediscovered' by a National Geographic team in 2000 though the Chinese have known about it for millennia. The worlds largest, tallest natural arch, the Empire State Building would scrape underneath it at 1250 ft high
3.SUBTROPICAL FOREST (elephant country) Xishuangbanna
1500 ft Baishui waterfall, Guangzhou
4.TROPICAL RAINFOREST (read: jungle), secondary, primary Hainan thick secondary forest
untouched primary forest
(much more light)
5.MANMADE LANDSCAPES rice terraces (some of these landscapes took 2000 years to create, and cover thousands of sq. miles) Yunnan
Guangxi - (my one favourite pic of this thread)
Guilin
other farmland
(farmland continued) red earth regions
vineyards/ Mediterranean
http://images.google.co.uk/url?q=htt...l4XsWDzAHFuS6w rapeseed fields:
6.ICE DESERTS, Tibet
Xinjiang, where glacier meets desert - the only other place that this happens is Mongolia
summer oasis
winter solitude
Tsangpo river system
Summer, Namtso, Tibet
tundra and snowfields (Tibet and Manchuria)
the worlds snowiest area, NE Asia (Siberia, Japan, Korea, Manchuria)
 

zupermaus

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7.VOLCANIC Wudulianchi lava fields (Black Mountain)
Baitoushan volcano and Tianchi volcanic lake
Tengchong's 20 volcanoes, Yunnan
8. BAMBOO FOREST - in effect the largest, fastest growing grass - some species can grow 6ft in a day Mekong river (subtropical)
temperate (panda land)
Bamboo species can reach 70ft high
 

zupermaus

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9.GRASSLANDS - Prairies, moors, savannah and high steppe
10.MARSHLAND swamps, bogs, bayous (the worlds greatest wildfowl sites)
tens of thousands died here in the marshes/ sinking mud/ quicksand during the Long March
mangrove swamps
Hong Kong believe it or not, one of the best wildfowl sites in the world
 

zupermaus

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11. CORAL ISLANDS Reefs, atolls, sand and coral beaches
12.CONIFEROUS FOREST
240ft high Sequoia groves, Sichuan
13. MOUNTAIN Chinese Himalayas, with the worlds two tallest mountains - the Tibet/ Xinjiang sides of Mt Everest and K2
Tien Shan, the world's second highest mountain range after the Himalayas
Hanging Temple
Mt Huangshan
14. KARST LANDSCAPES Guilin
http://torchrelay.beijing2008.cn
ww.eu169.com
Sichuan
Yunnan stone forests
Hebei
Fujian
Wulingyuan
 

zupermaus

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15.HIGH PLATEAU
16.SALT LAKES/SALT PANS Over 100 salt lakes dot Tibet, the remains of the inland Tethys Sea, a prehistoric, landlocked ocean from millions of years ago (and yep two of the lakes have rumours of lake monsters). Chaerhan
17.LOESS LANDS/ MEDITERRANEAN semi-desert
Loess is actually vast sediment deposits from China's great rivers, much of it left by catastrophic floods and course changes. It is not desert but is in fact some of the richest, most nutrient rich land for farming, aswell as being used for millennia for troglodyte housing (equally catastrophic in earthquakes - 830,000 died from cave-ins in a 1556 earthquake).
17. Mediterranean climate areas
18. RIVER GORGES/ CANYON LANDS Tiger Leaping Gorge, the deepest in the world (at 4000m twice the depth of the Grand Canyon, but vying with the Qingcheng Houshan and Kali Gandaki gorges for the title), so called because legends claim a hunted tiger once leapt across it (its 25m at its narrowest point)
The Three Gorges, Yangtze
The massive river, normally 10 miles wide, squeezes through a series of narrow inlets -the river speeds up and the depth reaches 600ft deep, the sheer walls rise thousands of feet overhead (although now raised an extra 500ft from the dam).
19. CAVES/ UNDERGROUND SYSTEMS worlds largest sinkholes, Yungang:
Cave villages, Anshun:
Tenglong Cave, reputedly the worlds largest by volume (40 million cubic metres, 60km in length with underground rivers, lakes, caverns, waterfalls and ecosystems): www.shutterasia.com
The first cavern, also the worlds largest, is 4km long, starting from the worlds largest cave mouth
first station 2.2 km in
better scale for the cave mouth - note the size of the two people below it
 

dusty

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Another fantastic thread, thank you.
 

HORNS

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Damn, dude, thanks for the effort. It took me forever to go through those pictures.
 

zupermaus

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kewl, youve just completed a Grand Tour of China, and seen some of the rarest, newest sights in the world. Stuff like the caves (2006), the deserts etc haven't been seen by Western eyes until recently. People outside China, hell even organisations and institutions outside China are only finding out about these places now as the country opens up. To take those pics of the natural arch described once only 80 years previously the National Geographic had to risk their investigative team in 2000 (one way down, no known way back out): The Empire State Building can fit underneath:
With some places not even the Chinese know about:
the new biggest waterfall in China, Baitoushan falls, 1500ft high
 

gamelan

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great great post. i just spent the month of May in China and i can't wait to go back.

and i know this is the last thing on people's minds when all they're looking for is where their next meal will come from (or the "American Dream") but i hope the Chinese people realize what great natural beauty is in their country. and i hope the govt realizes this too.

but it's really depressing hiking to the top of a mountain in Huang Shan and seeing mutiple hotels up there too. conservationists in the US would have never let that happen and rightly so.

-Jeff
 

slipperywhenwet

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I've lived there, and I've got to say that I can't see myself returning. It just feels too exploited.

Being there always felt like I was on a train that was heading to a bridge that was out. You can see the end, but you can't stop the damn thing.

I've lived in Shanghai and Beijing, but traveled extensively up and down the east coast, usually staying in small cities or towns. It always felt like the glitz of the big cities was tarnished with the poverty of the rest of the country.
 

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