2014 Preview

Hi to all!

Wishing you a happy and healthy new year.

My plans?

Awaiting publication of an article I wrote for Japanese Alpine News, detailing why I believe the new Mekong source I discovered last July together with Luciano Lepre has to be considered the river’s true source. What will reactions be?

I first introduced this source in a couple of blogs that you can find elsewhere on this page, posted between August 12 and 28, 2013.

Trips I am planning later in 2014:

In July will set out on a great China road trip. This will diagonally cut through China from the southwest (China/Laos border post at Mohan) to the northeast (China’s northernmost county of Mohe on the Russian border). Four weeks and 6,000 kilometers or so. From subtropical to Siberian latitude, crossing China’s main rivers: the Yangtze in the south, the Yellow River in the north. Public transport: battered mid-size buses, modern touring car models, the occasional high speed train. Always among the Chinese people – those still poor, those of the new middle class, those now rich. Small villages, huge cities. No better way to experience China.

Yunnan – Myanmar border trip

Will roughly follow this border, staying on the Chinese side. Starting in the south in the lands of the Wa – my current favorite tribe. Headhunters as late as the 1960’s they are now the kindest and most welcoming of people. Among other ethnic groups will be the Kachin, called Jingpo in China.

Of course there is the semi-independent (?) Wa State itself, across the border….. Accessible or not? That would be another trip.

These are exploratory trips. They will stay clear of places described in guidebooks. I believe real travel takes you to the unknown. By nature an exploratory trip does not have a fixed schedule. Just a fixed general idea.

In November I will guide a Yunnan tour. That is well researched already, but it is a tour I much like to do. It takes in the best, most interesting and most authentic places Yunnan has to offer. Ancient villages, hill tribe markets and natural beauty all are part of the itinerary.

If you wish to join any of these tours, send me an email: info@pieterneele.com.

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