After the monastery stay and mountain trek, we continued on an 8 hour bus ride to Chongqing (said: chon king). This is the gateway to the Yangtze River and starting point of our Three Gorges boat trip. We spend two full days on board a basic Chinese style boat on our way through the Three Gorges en route to Yichang. The boat was noisy but with our special passes, we were given access to the lounge and the front and back decks.
First our en suite toilet light packed up and then our door fell off it's hinges! Both were repaired quickly but the smell of sewers never did go away. Unfortunately, the mist and smog was heavy and meant that we couldn't see the river bank in places. We did get 5.30am wake up calls from our local guide (dirty Harry as we called him!) to come see the narrow gorges as we passed through them. On the 3rd day, we took a progressively smaller boats out to the Lesser 3 Gorges and got some great shots.
The boat trip was surprisingly relaxing. Brian read his Da Vinci Code book almost cover to cover and I caught up in my journal...soon to be novel! We even learned to play Majone (said Mow jow) which is a cross between rummy and dominos.
By the end of our cruise, we were in Yichang but unfortunately, the boat arrived too late to tour the dam project. We just drove through the make-shift city built to house and provide for the construction workers.