A Travellerspoint blog

By this Author: greynomadm

Hong Kong and Home

It is always great to return home.


View 2005 China Tour on greynomadm's travel map.

Thu 14. Transfer to the airport very early to catch Cathay 07:15 flight (2500 Km S) to Hong Kong where we spent 7 hours at the International Terminal. Enormous place, takes you 30 minutes to walk from gate 71 to gate 1 - we did it to fill in time. We were too stuffed to travel into Hong Kong and couldn’t be bothered with the immigration and security checks. Cathay Pacific flight to Sydney left at 17:10.

Fri. 15. We arrived in Sydney at 06:05 - we were the first plane in I think. Customs and Quarantine and transfer to QANTAS domestic terminal. Welcome back to the real world - third rate facilities and less than helpful staff. Had to wait until 13:15 to fly back to Canberra. Son-in-law and grand kids were there to collect us and back to their place for a cup of coffee. Left Queanbeyan about 15:00 to head for Moruya, forced to stop for a one hour catnap in Braidwood.

Home at about 18:00. Stuffed but filled with great memories.

Posted by greynomadm 16:00 Archived in Hong Kong Comments (0)

Beijing and the Great Wall

Many palaces too.


View 2005 China Tour on greynomadm's travel map.

Sun 10. Train arrives Beijing 12 hours later having travelled 1500 Km. Chartered bus to the hotel and breakfast. The local guide escorts us to Tiananmen Square (closed for special event) and the Forbidden City - just enormous and impossible to describe. Lunch and rickshaw ride through the 'houtons' - traditional courtyard dwellings, not many left. After dinner “The Legend of Kung Fu” show, great seats and fantastic performance.

Mon 11. Chartered bus to visit The Great Wall at Jinshanling (3 hour drive - very hairy trip), climbed the Wall and walked (scrambled) along about 500 meters out and back. Just incredible structure and enormous scale. Beijing Duck Dinner - fantastic.

Tue 12 The local guide takes us on a tour of the Summer Palace - surrounds a huge lake which was dug out to create a hill - home of the “Marble Boat”, 1400 paintings along the covered 300 m walkway. Lunch - we needed it, feet have been worn down to stumps. Finish this off with a walk through the Temple of Heaven - a huge park, 285 ha with spectacular buildings, each one more magnificent than the last. Final night farewell dinner. It is almost over.

Wed 13. The end of the tour we're on our own. Visit the Silk Market - five floors of BARGAINS. Our bags are already fully stuffed but we manage to buy some last minute trinkets. Lunch and back to the hotel to do the final packing, early to bed.

Posted by greynomadm 16:00 Archived in China Comments (0)

Xi'an and the Terracotta Warriors

Walked part of the city wall


View 2005 China Tour on greynomadm's travel map.

Thu 7 Chartered bus to the airport for the 09:45 flight to Xi'an (1200 Km NW). Visited a special school for handicapped young people staffed by volunteer local college students. There's no social welfare to speak of. Special dumpling dinner.

Fri 8 Chartered bus to see the Terracotta Warriors - huge area and awesome task. Noodles for lunch and the Big Goose Pagoda, so many significant sites. We say goodbye to “Happy” Helen here as she has to prepare to take the next tour from Hong Kong. Hot Pot dinner.

Sat 9 Visit and walk part of the City Wall, the Muslim Quarter and the Great Mosque. Crossing a busy road, Jenny almost froze, I had to drag her to the far side. She doesn’t have my faith in their driving and she physically shook for 5 minutes. Lunch along the way and back to the hotel to await the chartered bus to the train station. Train to Beijing departs at 19:30 and we are heading North East.

Posted by greynomadm 16:00 Archived in China Comments (0)

Shanghai and Hangzhou

Also Zuh Jia Jiao


View 2005 China Tour on greynomadm's travel map.

Sun 3 Shanghai Museum fantastic historical artifacts, no photos allowed. In the afternoon Jen and I travelled on the Mag Lev train (431 Km per hour) WOW!!! After dinner off to the Shanghai Acrobats - fantastic, and finally bed.

Mon 4 Yu Yuan Gardens where we attended a traditional tea ceremony and topped that off with a River Cruise on the Hungpu River. Off to a pre-dinner drink on the 89th floor of the Jinmao Tower the “Cloud Nine” night club of the Hyatt hotel. On to dinner in the old French quarter and finally back to the hotel and BED!!!

Tue 5 Our departure is delayed as four of the party are in need of medical treatment for colds, flu and fever. Jenny came out with a shopping bag of medication and she only has a cold!! The chartered bus takes us West to Zuh Jia Jiao -
ancient canal town narrow streets, lots of trinkets, good food. After lunch we head South and arrive in Hangzhou (200 Km SW) in time to check in and have dinner.

Wed 6 They grow tea here in Hangzhou although they are less than 100 meters above sea level. Visited the Lin Yin temple enormous place, wealth of statues and buildings. After a big lunch we walk back to hotel 'not far' according to the tour guide - took us almost an hour and a half. After a simple noodle dinner we crashed out.

Posted by greynomadm 16:00 Archived in China Comments (0)

Yangzi River Cruise

Shanghai via Yichang


View 2005 China Tour on greynomadm's travel map.

Thu 31 After a big breakfast in the hotel we are transferred to the Yangzi River cruise boat the MV Victoria 7. We will be on board for two and half days and travel 600 Km E. The boat sails down the Yangzi, very wide, very dirty (silt mainly) and very busy with all manner of rivercraft. Stop at Fengdu in the afternoon for a shore excursion to the "Ghost City". Tourist attraction, 1000s of steps, Jen's side not too good we do part of it and sit out the rest. After dinner a fashion show by the crew Tony knocked out of musical chairs in the 2nd round!

Fri 1 April. Early morning on deck as we pass through the Qu Tang and later the Wu gorge and Goddess Peak. All along the river we see preparations for the flooding from the big dam, water level will rise about 30 meters. After lunch an excursion to the Shennong Stream, isolated minority people breathtaking scenery. Late afternoon the Xiling gorge followed by dinner then a movie on the construction of the 3 Gorges Dam Project. Enter the locks at the 3 Gorges Dam Project too dark to see any detail, trip through the locks takes about 3 hours. Tied up for the night.

Sat 2 Tour of the Dam Project so big it would take books to write about it and back to the boat to Yichang. Chartered minibus takes us to lunch ashore then on to the airport and the 17:30 flight to Shanghai (1000 Km E).

Posted by greynomadm 15:00 Archived in China Comments (0)

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