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Riding the buses » China

The Canglang (Blue Wave) Pavilion, Suzhou, China

The Canglang (Blue Wave) Pavilion, Suzhou, China

The classical gardens of Suzhou date back to the 6th century BC. More than 50 of these gardens are still in existence and 9 of them are regarded as the finest examples of Chinese “mountain … Read entire article »

Travelling around China made easy

Travelling around China made easy

My decision to travel through China was rather spontaneous. It was March 2012, and I was travelling around Malaysia. The weather was getting uncomfortably hot and after seeing so many so-called China towns I thought … Read entire article »

Suzhou, the city of gardens and the Grand Canal, China

Suzhou, the city of gardens and the Grand Canal, China

Suzhou is situated on Lake Tai in the Lower Yangtze Basin, just 66 km (41 mi) from Shanghai. It has long been one of China’s richest cities. The Grand Canal, which starts in Beijing and is … Read entire article »

The Lingering Garden, Suzhou, China

The Lingering Garden, Suzhou, China

The Lingering Garden is regarded as a masterpiece of classical Chinese garden style and is one of China’s four most famous gardens. The garden was named a UNESCO World Heritage site in 1997. It is said … Read entire article »

Hong Kong, Asia’s ‘World City’

Hong Kong, Asia’s ‘World City’

Hong Kong is a city of skyscrapers situated on the South China Sea.  It was once a British colony but on June 30, 1997 it was returned to China under the principle ‘One country, two … Read entire article »

The Master of Nets Garden, Suzhou, China

The Master of Nets Garden, Suzhou, China

Who wouldn’t love a garden that has a pavilion named “Moon Comes with Breeze”? Or the “Watching Pines and Appreciating Paintings Studio” where you go to watch evergreen trees during the wintry season. The garden’s … Read entire article »

Lijiang, China, an ancient town in a dramatic landscape

Lijiang, China, an ancient town in a dramatic landscape

China’s province of Yunnan is one of the world’s must-see destinations. The “mobs” are starting to go there so be sure to stop in if you’re in the neighbourhood. That may not be as difficult … Read entire article »

How not to hike the Tiger Leaping Gorge

How not to hike the Tiger Leaping Gorge

The Tiger Leaping Gorge in northern Yunnan is considered to be one of China’s best hikes. Foreigners have been trekking it since the 1980s although few Chinese do. I was travelling on my own and … Read entire article »

Sailing down the River Li, China

Sailing down the River Li, China

The Lijiang River (often called the River Li) starts in the Cat Mountain in Xing’an County and flows 437 km to the West River. The 83 km between the city of Guilin and the town … Read entire article »

The very doable Shanghai, China

The very doable Shanghai, China

It seems to me that just about everyone has heard about the remarkable effort China made in getting Beijing ready for the 2008 Olympics. Well, the country’s efforts for the 2010 World Expo in Shanghai … Read entire article »

The Humble Administrator’s Garden, Suzhou, China

The Humble Administrator’s Garden, Suzhou, China

Suzhou is one of China’s most historical and cultural cities. It also has over 60 well preserved classical gardens, nine of which are listed as world cultural heritages by UNESCO. So Suzhou is a city … Read entire article »

All I can do is “mooooo”! Being lost in a Yunnan market

All I can do is “mooooo”! Being lost in a Yunnan market

From the vault: The guy looked at me a little strangely but didn’t laugh; instead he shook his head and walked on. I will admit that I was acting weirdly for I was mooing, trying to … Read entire article »

May I introduce Jim, a Tibetan who owns a backpacker hotel in Dali, China

May I introduce Jim, a Tibetan who owns a backpacker hotel in Dali, China

Western travellers have been coming to Jim’s place in Dali, China for 28 years. In the early days they were mainly youthful backpackers whereas today they’re from different backgrounds and span many age groups. It’s … Read entire article »

The splendid diversity of Dali, China

The splendid diversity of Dali, China

There are travellers who dismiss Dali, saying it was once a place treasured by western backpackers but is now too touristy. I say just ignore these naysayers for they know not what they are talking … Read entire article »

Yuyuan Garden, Shanghai, China

Yuyuan Garden, Shanghai, China

The Yuyuan Garden in Shanghai was my introduction to classical Chinese gardening. The garden is hidden in the Yuyuan Tourist Mart in the old city—a shopping area made up of rows of stores housed in … Read entire article »

“The Chinese people have stood up”: So says the National Museum of China

“The Chinese people have stood up”: So says the National Museum of China

The National Museum of China underwent a four-year reconstruction and expansion project and was officially opened March 1, 2012.  It is across from Tiananmen Square and from the second floor you can look down on … Read entire article »

There’s more to Beijing than the Great Wall

There’s more to Beijing than the Great Wall

Beijing, the capital of the People’s Republic of China, lies in the northeastern part of the country, at the foot of the Yanshan Mountain and not far from the East China Sea. It was my introduction … Read entire article »

China: Looking back

China: Looking back

There have been profound economic and social changes in China over the past few years and a much improved tourist infrastructure is now in place. Not so long ago it was a challenge to travel … Read entire article »