Snow Jade Cave, Fengdu, China

Located about eight miles from the new county of Fengdu, the Snow Jade Cave is rated as China’s most beautiful by Chinese National Geography. Discovered in the mid-1990’s, the cave is over 1,022 miles long. Because of its uniqueness and beauty, it has become a popular scenic spot along the Yangtze River as well as serving as a research site for the study of caves. Most of the stalactites in the cave are white and pure as jade, hence its name. Stalactites grow quickly – thirty-three millimeters in one hundred years in fact. In contract, in other such kinds of caves, the average stalactite only grows one millimeter in a century. It houses many spectacular and unusual karst formations. These include a waterfall; stone hair; shields; coral and animal shapes. Tourists have 725 miles to visit. You will see the so-called ‘Four Wonders’; the coral tower in the cave is the largest of its kind in the world; the glittering and transparent King Stone Flag at 26 feet high is the world’s tallest and thinnest stone flag; the stone shield at 13 feet high is also known as the Snowy Jade Penguin; some groups of stalactites resemble goose necks, some as much as two yards long.

Tips

You can go there by car or boat or you can take a bus at Chaotian Gate bus station to Fengdu.
The best time to visit the region is in winter or spring.
You must take some warm clothes to enter into the cave. Another possibility is to rent warm clothes there.
It’s recommended not to visit the cave alone.
If you make a trip along the Yangtze River, the cave is one of the usual tourists stops.

The Tiger Temple, Thailand

The Tiger Temple is a Buddhist place of worship located in Thailand, northwest of the city of Kanchanaburi. The monks practice breeding different animals including tigers. It is open to tourism. Tiger farming began in 1999. According to the monks, they received the animals directly from people who had them as pets or they were young tigers that were brought after their mother had been killed by poachers. The temple opens from midnight to 16:00. In addition to the monks, there are international volunteers and local staff who take care of the animals. You can go there from Bangkok or Kanchanaburi. The tourists are accompanied throughout the visit and the monks are always close to control them in case a cat fuss. There are many controversies about this because many people think that tigers are drugged but the people who work there say they are quiet precisely because they have just finished eating before the visit of tourists. There are urns where visitors can make a donation as they plan to open another space, Tiger Island, where the felines could stay in a more natural environment and where they would have the opportunity to learn to hunt in order to a possible release in nature.

Tips

The best way to visit the temple is to do it on a guided tour. There are several options for combining the temple with other nearby attractions. In full day tours, lunch is included.

Do not wear red or pink or you must buy clothes before entering the temple. The only ones who can wear these colors are the healers. Women can not have their shoulders uncovered, but short-sleeved shirts are accepted.

Saint Kitts, Saint Kitts and Nevis, Lesser Antilles

Saint Kitts is an island in the Lesser Antilles and together with Nièves form the State of St. Kitts and Nevis. Originally called San Cristobal because it was Christopher Columbus that discovered it and baptized it in his name. The island is of volcanic origin and the highest peak is the volcano Liamuiga (1131 meters); which is currently asleep. Between its main cities are Basseterre, Sadlers, Cayon and Sandy Point Town. The island keeps a peculiar character since the time of slavery; a colony of African vervet monkeys or green monkeys, a large free-ranging colony. The economy of the island comes from agriculture, especially sugar cane and its drifts and tourism. The island has sixteen beaches.

Tips

If you visit the island during your cruise, the best way to get a glimpse of the island is to take a taxi, the driver will tell you a bit about the island’s history and show you the more interesting places and if the weather allows you, you can finish your day with a swim in one of its beautiful beaches.

If you want to visit the fortress of Brimstone Hill (1690), classified National Park and inscribed on UNESCO World Heritage, plan a minimum of half a day. It is the ideal place to make beautiful pictures of the neighboring islands and the north of Saint-Christophe. There is a historical museum set up in the citadel’s barracks.

There is also a small two-story tourist train that runs slowly, allowing you to take pictures or videos. You will be accompanied by live songs and depending on who you will have your excursion with, there is also the possibility of a guide in different languages. Alcoholic beverages (with rum, of course) and a few non-alcoholic beverages will be served during the journey.