My fourth (I think) weekend here in Beijing I travelled south with Liu Lan's University of California Education Abroad Program. We spent two days visiting the mountainous region of Wuyishan, and then travelled by overnight train to Xiamen, the southernmost coastal city in China. Both were incredibly beautiful places, and a refreshing change of pace from Beijing's hustle and bustle, millions of people (though we were met by a new mass of people--tourists--in both Wuyishan and Xiamen), and pollution! Here are a few photos from the trip.
Last summer I was playing baseball in Lithuania, coaching in Moscow, hitching through Bavaria, and working construction in the South of France. Who knows what this summer will bring.
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relaxing on the riverwe were required to wear these stylish orange lifevests while floating down the river. The rafts were pushed along by two riverboat paddlers, who used long bamboo sticks to push us along. The water was only about 2 meters deep throughout.
Liu Lan and Cleo :)Liu Lan is the program/office director for the UC program in China. She planned the whole trip! Cleo is her assistant.
Coming to dockthe trip along the river lasted about an hour and a half. Notice how many bamboo rafts there are! The rafts were back to back the whole way down the river--I imagine thousands of sightseers make it down this one stretch of river ever day.
a photoAusten, Brian, and (!) I forgot the girl in the picture's name. All Liu Lan's students.
Chinese Tea CeremonyTea Ceremonies are a popular tourist spot, and well worth it I think. You receive an in-depth explanation of the traditional teas from the area, get a taste of each, and can buy them if you would like (though be careful--they are often expensive, sometimes worth the price but other times you can get a similar tea out on the street for a fraction of the price!).
Street vendorThis was an interesting street food. Inside is a big mush of rice and flour ( I believe). As the seller turns the crank, small round balls of the gooey rice substance pops out and falls into the tin pan. It is mixed around with sugar and various spices and becomes a sweet, warm, and gooey snack served in convenient little plastic bags!! Very tasty.