Monday, June 14, 2010

Home again!

Well at N's in the Hunter Valley anyway, closer than China. I don't think I want to go home but tomorrow is it...
The last day in China was at Du Fu Cottage, a park in honour of an ancient poet. The trees, plants and ponds were magnificent. We also visited a brocade factory before into the plane again.

Then we went to Hong Kong for a couple of days, so hot and steamy but really enjoyed it, didn't do much shopping but of course I bought some material.

Hong Kong boat - fishing or washing?

View from Peak

The flight home was fantastic, my beautiful daughter gave me points to upgrade, now I need to become a millionaire so I can fly like that all the time!

Wednesday, June 09, 2010


Echo picked us up last night and today we went to see the pandas! So cute but we were a little disappointed in the information available. I was in agony with my back but was OK when walking or sitting, it was getting up and down that hurt.
Not just pandas at the panda park!
How cute
In the afternoon we went down to Leshan to see the standing Buddah. On the way we passed tea terraces but couldn't stop - we were a bit disappointed as it would have been quite easy to diverge slightly. We chose to go on the boat to the buddah but would have been great to walk up, darn back! Tea was great, went to a local restaurant and Echo ordered for us, we then went on to the Sichuan Opera. Amazing....

Sichuan Opera

Tuesday, June 08, 2010


ANOTHER early start, picked up at 6:30am for our flight to Guilin. The lovely Emily was there to pick us up and off we went at a run! Reed Flute Caves (through the overseas tourist entrance of course), Seven Star Park, Elephant Trunk Hill. After a little rest and sustanance we then all went on the Two Rivers and Four Lake Night Cruise. The reflective pool at the Caves was once again a highlight but rather spoiled by the "light show". The parks were lovely and it was good to wander around looking at the plants, people and vistas.

Reed Flute Cave
Fishing at night

Sun and the Moon Pagodas
These were seen on the night cruise - we had a fantastic trip as we were on a local boat, someone started strumming (not sure what the instrument was) and every one started singing, it was great fun to bed as up early again the next day!
This was a highlight that N was really looking forward to and the scenery, while a lot mistier than when I went before was fantastic. Once on board we raced upstairs to get a prime position for photos. Hawkers rowed out to the boat trying to interest us in souvenirs. We arrived in Yangshou and wandered up through the market area to catch a golf buggy to go out to a local residence where we were greeted by two little old ladies clapping to show they were happy to welcome us to their home. The house was 300 years old and twelve generations had lived there. Then drove back to Guilin where we had a massage - big mistake! N and I wandered around town for a while, had tea at a local restaurant and the back to the hotel.
Nicole and Emily at the rice terraces

This trip was an extra on our holiday. Absolutely fabulous history of 1000 years of cultivation. Emily even had lunch with us, we insisted after she bought us some ginger tea that would cure all our ailments. A big storm hit and we were absolutely soaked, we had to change at the airport for our trip to Chenghu and PANDAS!

Saturday, June 05, 2010


Ivan was there to meet us and off to see the Warriors, N really really wanted to see them and I was just happy to holiday with her :-) We were like VIPs because as we were in a small car we were allowed to drive right up to the enclosures.

That evening we went and had a dumpling banquet and then watched the Tang Dynasty Show. Ivan was so pleased with himself in getting us the best seats in the house!

It was a magnificent meal and a magnificent show!

N finding the way

This morning up early again! No sleep ins on this holiday. We had a long drive ahead of us as the road was being repaired and we were told it would take 4 hours instead of 1 (actually took 3!) but it was a good trip and we enjoyed it, when we had our eyes open! I am sure you aren't supposed to overtake around a bed, three abreast but Mr E was determined to do it. (Some would say that I should be used to driving like that!) Mt Huashan was fantastic, we walked and climbed and walked. Loved it, even managed to survive the chair lift.

After a good soak in the bath (no not that photo I think!) we headed off via an electric rickshaw to the market, no Chinese on our side and no English on his! Wandered around the market, then back to the hotel (again in an electric rickshaw that we think had a flat battery because we were ushered to a third one!) for a .....Moroccan dinner.

Sweets at the market

Thursday, June 03, 2010


Arrived in China yesterday and made my way to the hotel, N had arranged for a driver. As N was busy with work, well in another city altogether I think! I went for a walk around the block by myself and found this vegie garden in the middle of Beijing and just had to take a photo of it for my baby brother.

Today I went on a big adventure all by myself as N once again was off on work stuff (on the fast train, exciting). I took a taxi to Tiananmen Square, so different from when I was there last time. Huge TV screens erected in the Square which really spoils it IMHO.

Then for a wander around the Forbidden City. I spent quite a long time there before heading off out the Western Gate for a look around.

A bedspread in one of the display rooms

Looking back at the Forbidden City

Very early start tomorrow for our flight to Xian! The start of our adventure!

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