After a sleepless night listening to the creaking of the ship in the locks, we got to see the Three Gorges Dam this morning. We passed through 5 locks, starting at 2:50 a.m., and lasting till 6 a.m. The good news was we didn't need an alarm to wake us up!
We were picked up in buses and taken over to a hill called the "Jar" because it looks like an upside down jar. It has a nice lookout towards the dam. It turns out it's not the biggest or widest dam in the world, but has displaced more people than any other! It also provides more electric power than any other dam!
The grounds were beautifully landscaped, and the system for getting us to the dam was very efficient. Since the dam is such a big tourist attraction, it is nice that they've made it attractive to view it from a nearby hill.
We enjoyed looking down on the locks, and realizing it took almost four hours last night to go just a few hundred yards! They're building a new elevator lock that will fill up in 40 minutes and transfer a cruise ship in just one lock!
We walked around at the base of the dam, but didn't get inside to see any of the workings of it.
We were excited to have 20 minutes to shop before getting back on the ship. We've sorely missed out on shopping on this trip! Everyone but Ed managed to get something today!
Well, John also didn't go shopping. He even missed the dam tour. He was the fifth person in our group to fall victim to a cold we've been passing around with our chopsticks. Fortunately, I have escaped the little bug up till now!
We were picked up at the end of the cruise by a local guide, who took us out to a great lunch in the small town (4 million inhabitants) of Yichang. Our guide took us to the airport for our flight to Shanghai. The airport was nice, but small and only has 16 flights a day! Happily, our flight took off right on schedule!
We arrived at the Ramada Gateway Plaza in Shanghai about 7 p.m. It is a very large complex, but quite nice. Shanghai is so modern and beautiful! It really looks like a different country. The architecture is so beautiful. We can't wait to explore it tomorrow! In the meantime we picked up a little snack for dinner at a French bakery!