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Published: June 30th 2010
Day 159: Wednesday, May 5th, 2010
Shanghai, China to Xi'an, China Per Intrepid notes, "We arrive early morning in Xi'an and have a private transfer to our hotel which is located right in the heart of this ancient city. After checking in your leader can take you for an optional local breakfast, perhaps some fried dough sticks with soy milk or some steamed buns as well as on a walk to show you where local facilities such as the bank, laundry and food outlets are located.
The imperial centre of China for 2,000 years, Xi'an is now a vibrant, modern city dotted with many interesting historical sites. A monument pays homage to the fact that this was the start of the famous ancient trading route of the Silk Road and the city is still surrounded by city walls along which you can climb and walk or cycle around for a unique way to experience the city. For a different view of the city centre, ascend to the top of the Bell or Drum Towers in the centre of the city. As home to many Hui people, an ethnic Muslim minority, Xi'an has a unique Islamic flavour in the streets surrounding
the Great Mosque known as the Muslim quarter, the night markets and in many of the tantalising local specialties such as pao mo (lamb broth that you break flat bread into), hand pulled noodles, hot pot and barbecue. In the evening you can try your voice at karaoke with your group or head down to the South Park to live it up with the locals as they dance, practice martial arts, play games, fly kites and take part in other traditional pastimes."
So, the rest of the group arrived in Xi'an via train early in the morning. Myself, Steve and Damon caught an early morning flight from Shanghai to Xi'an. To fly from Shanghai to Xi'an was only about $100 US. If I remember correctly, the train was about $50 US. Screw that- for $50 I'll avoid another train ride. Poor Damon was still suffering from allergies so he was unconscious for the most part and soon exhaustion caught up with myself and Steve so we all conked out on the plane. I was proud, I managed not to drool nor snore (though I guess I was 2 inches away from sleeping on Steve's shoulder- sorry Steve!)
get to Xi'an, get a taxi and head to our hotel, the Guan Zhong Hotel
. Since, once again, I am the single female traveler, I'll get rooms to myself for the remainder of my trip. Yea!!! We meet up with Marcia and the others and Marcia leads us on a tour of our neighborhood of Xi'an. We're not that far from the Muslim Quarter
so we do a quick walk past that. Plus some drum towers and what not. I vote got the Xi'an link at the top of the page- odds are, we walked by some of that stuff.
That night, we take some tuk tuk's to the Tang Palace Dance Show
. We had a huge dumpling dinner there and we repeated past mistakes. They serve you little portions of one kind of dumpling, so you gobble before you fellow travelers eat up your share. Repeat this about 8 times and by the time they've brought out the 9th tray of dumplings, we're all sitting there going "can't eat, pants will split." They bring out about 5 more dishes after that. Every time I think I'll never get full and it always ends up there's too much food. Oh well.
So, the opera
was nice. I was hoping for something amazing and dramatic, just like in Shanghai. It was just a bunch of pretty dancing. Still, it was a fun night- had a chance to get to know the rest of the new group.
Tot: 3.019s; Tpl: 0.046s; cc: 11; qc: 72; dbt: 0.06s; 2; m:saturn w:www (126.96.36.199); sld: 2;
; mem: 1.4mb