Page 8 of AnnaW travels Travel Blog Posts

Asia » China » Shanxi » Pingyao May 31st 2013

Another day, another province in China… This time we were driving to Shanxi, a province somehow forgotten or lost in time it would seem as an estimated three million people still live in caves around here! And you don’t really need to be driving around for a long time trying to find the caves as they are spread everywhere around the province, you can easily spot them once you drive through the region – cave dwellings all around. Our group leaders were saying the day before that it was going to be a long drive that day – it could be a 5-hour up to 8-hour drive depending on the road conditions, whether we would fit through one place or whether we would have to drive around it... hmmm… It didn’t make sense at the time ... read more
the streets of Pingyao
sun setting over Lijiashan
side streets of Pingyao

Asia » China » Shaanxi » Xi'an May 27th 2013

There it was, my solo adventure in China was coming to an end as I was about to join the Dragoman truck the next day. First had to pick up my visa and get to Xi’an though... Didn’t really have a lot of time in the morning to do that as my train to Xi’an was leaving at 12.50. I booked it before I even went to Emei Shan but already at that time my choice of trains was very limited – didn’t know the route was so popular with locals! There sure were many trains going to Xi’an from Chengdu each day but at the time I was booking my ticket there were only two morning trains left – had my group meeting at 9 the next morning so really needed to get there before ... read more
at the city wall in Xi'an
ancient street in Xi'an
yum! dumplings!!!!

Asia » China » Sichuan » Leshan » Emeishan May 23rd 2013

My first visit to Leshan definitely wasn’t a successful one, very far from it actually. I got to Chengdu on Sunday so thought it would be best to head to the PSB office the very next day as wasn’t sure how long it would take to arrange everything. But then I found out that in Leshan you could get the visa extension on the same day (while in Chengdu it would take 5 days) so without even thinking about it, I got my bus ticket and headed to Leshan on Monday morning. According to LP I could just take a public bus there, I sure tried to do that… only to get a lot of head shaking and pointing all around from the bus drivers. Ok, taxi then! Tried a couple of them showing the drivers ... read more
at Emei Shan Park
girls getting ready to perform at Baoguo
at Baoguo

Asia » China » Sichuan » Chengdu May 19th 2013

Before deciding to take on the 24hour bus journey to Chengdu I did look at different options of getting there and obviously flying would’ve been the best one but it was way out of my budget, then there was an option to take a bus to Panzhihua and a train from there (which didn’t seem that bad but there were a couple of risks involved like delays and hence a necessary overnight there…) but a direct bus from Lijiang all the way to Chengdu sounded like a much easier way to travel so finally went for the 24 hours journey! I knew I was getting an upper seat (it was actually a bed rather than a seat) but still was quite surprised to see the way the beds were arranged in the bus – my ‘seat’ ... read more
at Tianfu Square
at the Panda Centre
monk at Wenshu Temple

Asia » China » Yunnan » Tiger Leaping Gorge May 16th 2013

I had some serious doubts whether to do this trek or not… I definitely wanted to do it, but wasn’t exactly keen on doing it on my own… but then decided to go for it after all, you never know, maybe it’s the first and last time I put my foot around here… and what’s more this place might not look the same after a few years anymore as there are some serious works going on around here at the river at the moment… As soon as I decided to do this trip I found out that my new Slovenian friends from Dali were doing it on the same day as well, so it looked like I would be having a company after all! Great! :)I booked a bus from the old town to Qiaotou (35 ... read more
river slowly coming out of the clouds...
hiking the Tiger Leaping Gorge
hiking the Tiger Leaping Gorge

Asia » China » Yunnan » Lijiang May 14th 2013

I got to Lijiang in the early afternoon, which was just perfect as had almost the whole day to explore still! The Chinese guy who joined me on a bike on the way to Caicun the previous day told me if I liked Dali, I was going to like Lijiang even more. As promising as it sounded I wasn’t totally convinced but have to say that he was absolutely right! What a charming place – narrow cobblestoned streets, beautiful wooden finished buildings, bridges and canals all around, absolutely beautiful! Jade River splits into three streams here which flow along the streets of the old town and apparently some people go as far to call Lijiang ‘Chinese Venice’… There would have to be a few more canals to be called that I’d say, but there is something ... read more
women of Baisha
in Baisha
famous dr Ho

Asia » China » Yunnan » Dali May 11th 2013

I woke up a bit earlier just in case there were any troubles in reaching the bus station – like getting lost when changing buses or taking the bus in the wrong direction for example… ;) Well… getting there couldn’t have been easier though – there was actually very good information at my hostel as to which buses to take and where to change so following the instructions I got there without any problems at all – 10 stops with bus 95, then another 10 with bus 80 and taraaa! …arrived at East Bus Station! And the journey cost me 2yuan only! Happy days! It was funny though when I was getting on the first bus, I let through an old Chinese man, he just couldn’t stop smiling to me later on and even wanted to ... read more
Erhai Lake
at Congshen Temples
performance at the Southern Gate

Asia » China » Yunnan » Kunming May 9th 2013

Originally I was supposed to enter China from a totally different side – through Tibet, but had to change my plans in the end… Than I thought that maybe it was for the best as thinking of going to an altitude of over 4,000m was making me slightly uneasy – I think I’ve had enough of high altitudes for a while… The new plan was to start off in Yunnan, then through Sichuan head all the way to Beijing and finally back south through Shanghai to Hong Kong. But then since I was applying for a Chinese visa in Kathmandu, only got a visa for a month, which definitely wasn’t enough time for my itinerary. Ah well… I decided to stick to the plan though and see how far that would take me… Coming from Kathmandu ... read more
morning tai-chi in the park
in Kunming
at the Yuantong Temple

Asia » Nepal » Kathmandu » Thamel May 8th 2013

So there it was… It was time to say goodbye to Nepal… Not that I wanted to as I really got to love this country and its people. But then new countries waited to be explored and I was actually ready for new adventures as well! Especially the last week was a little bit emotional as I was on my own once again – all my buddies from Annapurna eventually had to go back to their lives, their Nepali adventure finished earlier than mine… The only thing that was keeping me in Kathmandu this last week was my Chinese visa really (it takes 4 days to issue it there usually but due to bank holidays it took a bit longer than expected)... Actually thinking about going on my own to China was a bit of a ... read more
the streets of Kathmandu
relaxing around Durbar Square...
sunset at Swayambhunath

Asia » Nepal » Bhaktapur » Durbar Square April 30th 2013

Having heard so many good things about Bhaktapur, I just knew I had to make it there one day, only had to fit it in my busy schedule somehow... ;) But finally a wonderful opportunity came up to share this experience with my dear friend (that would be you Grant! :)). We thought about taking a local bus there first, which could’ve been an interesting experience on its own, but since it was well over 30C degrees outside, we just decided to spoil ourselves a bit and took a driver instead – and what a treat it was, a sports car with airco! It just doesn’t happen in Nepal… Once we got to Bhaktapur we were offered guide services straight away, the guy seemed very nice and his price was very good also, but having him ... read more
Bel marriage ceremony in Bhaktapur
Durbar square in Bhaktapur
in Bhaktapur :)

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