[photopress:Three_Parallel_Rivers.gif,full,alignright]A national park complex with the most excellent name of ‘Greater Shangri-La’ is being constructed near the Three Parallel Rivers in Yunnan. The complex includes Potatso National Park, Meili Snow Mountain, Tiger Leaping Gorge, Shangri-La Gorge, Tacheng National Park for the Yunnan Golden Monkey and many other scenic sites.
So it will be big, colorful and will pull yet more tourists to the area which is under the supervision of the Diqing Tibetan Autonomous Prefecture. The Three Parallel Rivers area is a UNESCO World Natural Heritage site. And rightly so. Three of China’s great rivers — the Yangtze, Nujiang and Lancangjiang — run roughly parallel from north to south for 170 km. The Diqing Tibetan Autonomous Prefecture accounts for 49.2% of the total area which is a magical group of alpine landscapes.
Presently, the Potatso National Park is mapping out its second phase of construction. The road construction up into Meili Snow Mountain will begin soon. By the end of this year, several projects will start equipping the Tacheng National Park for the Yunnan Golden Monkey with a security system and Damo Cave with an asphalt road.
To include the formerly independent Bitahai Lake and Shuduhu Lake into the complex, a 69-km environmental-friendly asphalt road and a 10-km plank road constructed with advanced Finnish technology are being installed. All of which links these areas of outstanding national beauty into one.
The problem will be dealing with all of the visitors who want to go there. However, the parks of this area have much experience and will almost certainly keep it under control. Doubtless there will be loud lamentations from those who would like to keep this a wilderness with only a selected few — basically themselves — visiting. However, there does seem to be a concerted effort to keep the project under control and not impinge much on the area’s natural beauty.