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Published: August 25th 2011
We were relieved when our train pulled in to Xi’an station around 11.30am and followed the crowd out to the exit where we found a guy from Xiangzimen hostel we had booked waiting for us. Our first thoughts of the hostel were ‘very nice’, in an old traditional building and decorated in traditional Chinese style. On further inspection we found it not to be as nice as we had thought. The bathroom was dirty, bed hard, and when Debbie pulled out a black curly hair from her overpriced spag bol at the restaurant right in front of the waitress she did nothing except take the hair and throw it on the floor. Not so nice after all. We did some laundry and enquired about tours and train tickets. We booked train tickets but not a tour as we had read some bad reviews and they looked overpriced. They didn’t seem too happy with us after that! We spent the rest of the afternoon sleeping as we’d only got a couple of broken hours on the train.
We were up and out the door by 7.45am as we had decided to do the terracotta warriors trip ourselves. We took a taxi
to the train station and they the local bus for 8RMB (80p) to the site. We hired a guide which was expensive but worth it. We like how the warriors have been kept in the same place they were excavated but the whole place has become ultra-touristy - there's even a subway!
We got ourselves back to the city to visit the bell tower followed by the drum tower. After we took a walk around the market and Muslim quarter where we had some tasty pitta bread stuffed with beef.
On Thursday morning we caught an early taxi to the Shaanxi Museum of History which was definitely worth a look – especially as it was free – but was packed with locals pushing and shoving to get a photo of everything. We grabbed some lunch at a place around the corner where we think they don’t see many tourists. Luckily they had pictures of their food we could point at or we might have had problems!
We headed back to the hostel to pick up our train tickets and relax before the train journey to Beijing – which we had managed to get a sleeper for!!
Deb & Ang
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