In July, we went to Yunnan for a week of travel. Although we cannot leave China, we can travel within it and it gave us the opportunity to explore the country we live in. Yunnan is a very special region and is the Tibetan part of China. We went to Dali and Shangri-La.

In Dali, we stayed at the Linden Center, which you can see on the above drawing on the right. This place was right next to a rice field and was surrounded by stunning mountains kissed by clouds. It was an absolute joy to be there.

We did lots of exploring in the village of Xizhou as well as Dali Old Town. We also went tea picking and made our own green tea. The food was fantastic.

We travelled from Dali to Shangri-La where we stayed at the Songstam Lodge. This was a whole new set of amazingness to discover: monasteries, wild flowers, sacred hillsides with colorful flags and delicacies using yak meat or milk.

For this travel journal, because I knew there would be very little on site ephemera, I focused on sketching and watercolor drawings. I really took my time with it and completed it about a week after our return. It was a really great exercise and I love the result.

I definitely recommend adapting your travel journal to the place where you are going so that it reflects the atmosphere of the trip you took. The colors I used are all part of a palette I created myself by combining watercolors from different sets I had. I feel so grateful to have been able to travel in 2020, something I thought I would have to forgo.