Travel Theme: Mystical

Mystical is the theme for this week at Where’s my backpack?

Some of the mystical scenes that I have seen were high up in the mountains of Zhang Jia Jie, China where the mist is thick.

The mist is so thick and the mountains are so strangely shaped that they look almost surreal.

Even the leaves look mystical in the heavy mist.; the silhouette is just eerie.

Some limestone columns look as if they are floating in the air. What seems more mystical is how some trees can survive at the top of these columns.

Is this mystical or just “mistical” ? . . . . . . . . . . . . .

83 thoughts on “Travel Theme: Mystical

    • Up on the mountains, the weather changes quite quickly and the mist sometime gets very thick too. I also like the atmosphere of the second photo. Thank you!

  1. I would definitely call your gorgeous photo’s mystical. Don’t know if you saw James Cameron’s block buster movie Avatar, but this beautiful destination may have inspired him.

    • Hi Boomdeeadda, have seen the film. You are right, it was the scene in this place that inspired Avatar. You may also like to preuse my earlier post under Travel China – In Search of Avatar. Thank you, Michael

  2. Last photo is great. Why is it that mist makes us thing of mystical? Do we feel the same during sunrise? I guess mystical evokes the unknown, and the sun makes us see too well?

  3. Gorgeous photos – they are really filled with mystic … my favorite is the last one.
    Where the rock stands out … so clear in the mist. That is one of my top favorite from you camera.

    • Actually, all the images are interesting. They fit the theme well too. Does the 3rd one happen to be a favorite of yours? It is funny though, how people react to photos. Sometimes you get a response that you didn’t expect.

    • I think they are good as a set. I want readers to see in more detail what they see in the dark environment in photo 2. 3rd photo shows the details rather than the landscape. I think it is less interesting and have considered using it for the Weekly Photo Challenge on Silhouette. Thanks for the response!

      PS Is the photo your childhood photo? This photo reminds me of a photo taken of my sister when she was small.

    • Yes, it is. I was about 18 months old at the time. It was taken by my mother. As with most of my childhood photos, I am making a ridiculous face 🙂

      Your photos do work as a set as well. I think the 3rd one would have worked for the Silhouette challenge as well. It is interesting how some photos are flexible that way.

  4. Hi, I’ve been developing a smartphone app for a couple of years which is based on the principles of Tai Chi – i have 20 years experience learning Tai Chi Chuan, Bagua Chuan, and other Taoist arts. I am European, though by coincidence my brother has lived in Hong Kong for almost 25 years. I while ago i was looking for a suitable background picture of the mountains of China, renowned as the source of much inspiration for the Taoist arts. A google search showed the first picture on this page. The different levels of the mountains in the picture, with greater mist at each level, captured well i thought the stages of achievement of gong fu, hidden in the mists, but available for those who search and persevere. I check only now on if the image is free for use, and see you have a copyright policy. The app is therapeutically orientated, but ultimately it will be commercial if the therapeutic aspect is found to work. If you would be happy to allow the use then i could credit you. If you contact me by email i can show you how the picture works as a background for the app. Maybe you will find the use in a Taoist context supportable. If not then i fully understand, and would simply congratulate you on capturing well the essence of the mystical mountains, both hiding and revealing their secrets.

    • I can fully understand why this picture is suited for your purpose. Go ahead and download it for this purpose. Please include a link back to my site.
      I would like to have a look at your Apps when it is available.

    • Ok. In the next few weeks i’ll be preparing the online launch, so will return and post some links when they are available. I hope you will consider they merit use of the image.

    • Hello again. The app and website have now been launched. The website can be found at, and the app at Both have a credit and acknowledgement for use of the Zhang Jia Jie image. I hope you like how the design works. If you review the case studies on the website, you can see what the goals of the app are. Is is intended that the full benefit will always be 100% free, perhaps ad supported at some point if we get some success, as it has been two years, and a lot of work in the development. If you would like any changes to the image use, or would like to request that we find an alternative image, there is a contact email on the website to get in touch. With best regards.

    • I am impressed!
      The photo at large scale comes out so well, I can now see why you said this photo fits exactly your purpose.
      The photo was taken with an entry level SLR Nikon D40 camera which has a low resolution, I am glad that it comes out so well.
      I like your site too which will hep many people in need.
      Do you think your work is also suitable with Parkinson Disease tremor?

    • Glad you like how the image is being used. There was a few hours searching for something that blended with the inspiration and goals of the app.

      Concerning how the app might work for Parkinson’s Disease tremors, there are several studies and personal accounts of how Tai Chi can improve management of Parkinson’s Disease. This site has a nice summary of typical benefits.

      I would say that roughly half of what is in Tai Chi, and described in the link above, should be enhanced by the app, possibly substantially enhanced. Top of the list would be relaxation, and increased conscious motor control, posture awareness.

      The actual cause of Parkinson’s tremors is quite well understood (where as the much more common essential tremor isn’t understood). Actually affecting this underlying cause of Parkinson’s is a much tougher question. It is about dopamine levels, so essentially cells are getting destroyed, or not doing there job, and if the body could get the cells to work better, get them replaced, then the disease would reverse.

      There are various internet discussions on how use of Chinese Medicine (TCM) practices (Herbs / Qi Gong etc) can reverse symptoms. Often included with various other holistic health practices.

      So there would appear to be mechanisms that promote the necessary cell changes to reverse symptoms, but it’s probably tough to get the exact balance of medicines / activities right. The very best doctors of advanced TCM are quite difficult to find.

      I would say the app has a chance to get into this advanced recovery realm, as it is using technology to give bio-feedback, so not limited by the skill of a TCM doctor, a Tai Chi teacher, or ability to learn advanced Tai Chi skills. So i would give this a maybe, but only a few test cases would show whether there was any chance of this.

      From the app i would expect some basic improvements in well being, but i would not not obviously expect major improvements in tremors, as these have a known cellular cause which is difficult to change.

      There might be some useful effects from the body learning how to compensate with the cell problems. Symptoms might improve, and progression of the disease might be slowed down. This would be more a middle ground possibility. Basic Tai Chi i would say is working in this area.

      The advanced benefits to repair the cells would only be known from some test cases. An outside chance perhaps, but unknown until it is tried.

      In summary, i’d certainly think it was worth a try. At 7 minutes once or twice a day, there is no real risk, and the possibility of genuine benefits. Only the first test users will answer the question if it was worth the practice time.

      I thought it best to include the reasoning for my answer, rather than just the conclusion. My plans for the app are to gradually build on positive test case results, and start going for more difficult test cases once a clearer picture is known on the benefits that are reliably reproducible.

      Hope that answers the question.

    • Hi Andy, thank you very much for the detailed explanation. I have passed this to a friend who has done electrodes implant to the brain to control his PD hand movements. I have also passed this to my relatives hope the will benefit by it.
      You have a great site and I wish you every success!

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