Page 3 of Greenwoods Travel Blog Posts

Asia » China » Beijing December 25th 2009

For some reason our photos are not showing so trying again!... read more
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Asia » China » Beijing December 24th 2009

This is Mark again, and I'm going to go ahead and give a run down of our day and only post a couple of pictures from my iPhone. Later, we'll come back and add pictures once Deb is awake. Merry Christmas by the way, as it Christmas morning here! We started the day real early to visit Mao's Mausoleum before the line got long. The subway was quite an adventure at 7:30am in rush hour. Each train was packed and we ended up waiting three trains until all six of us could squeeze in together. We ended up waiting only perhaps 5 minutes in line to see what might be Mao's preserved body. We had heard previously that the body in the mausoleum is often times a wax replica as they limit how much Mao's body ... read more
Mao's Mausoleum
People's Monument
Arrow Tower

Asia » China » Beijing December 23rd 2009

We started off the day with a quick work stop for Deb at the Johnson and Johnson Diabetes Institute in Beijing. The facility was part of a J&J Medical Center to train Chinese medical professionals in the hope of leading to more use of J&J products. We were impressed with the facility and the expense that Johnson & Johnson is putting into China. They obviously view it as a growing market. From there we moved on to a Cloisonne Factory. The process is a very interesting and labor intensive one. Being that it is the low tourist season, they basically opened the factory and gift shop for us. After we made our purchases at the gift shop, they quickly closed the doors and everyone went home. Prices at this place were higher than Deb paid last ... read more
Johnson and Johnson Diabetes Institute
Diana Reviewing Cloisonne Factory
Cloisonne Workers

Asia » China » Beijing December 22nd 2009

Today we had a great, very long day exploring Beijing. We ventured into the subway, as we have done in many other cities but found that the crowds were nothing like we anticipated. As the train approached, the meaning of crowded took on a whole new significance. We pushed our way through the crowd and found our way to The Temple of Heaven. We had fun walking through the maze of people trying to reach the entrance. There were so many people there engaged in a variety of activities from playing cards to singing to doing ballroom dancing. We took the boys to the Pearl Market so they could experience the fine art of bargaining first hand. Will purchased a “Bat Man Belt” and the boys all bought T Shirts, while Diana and I purchased some ... read more
One of two Starbucks within a block of our hotel
Temple of Heaven
Forbidden City

Asia » China » Beijing December 21st 2009

We are back relaxing in the executive lounge with a glass of wine and snacks while we write and upload photos of our great day to the Great Wall. Mr. Lei and his driver picked us up at 9 AM at the hotel and after adjusting to the traffic, crazy drivers and lack of seatbelts in the van, we settled back and enjoyed the clear sky and mountain views. The cool windy air gave us bright, clear skies! We started at the Badaling section and hiked up quite a steep portion of the Wall, certainly getting our cardiovascular workout of the week. We took the “left” hand turn and walked to the end of the line and only passed a few others along the way, we really had the Wall to ourselves! We had a great ... read more
Deb and Diana at Wall
Climbing the Wall

Asia » China » Beijing December 20th 2009

We are in Beijing!! Had a great flight, a little turbulence here and there but the 12 hours went by pretty fast with several movies and reading travel books. We hired a driver to pick us up at the airport and he was waiting for us with sign that said “Green Wood,” kids thought that was funny. We are very happy with our hotel, JW Marriott, we are on a club floor with access to the club lounge with drinks available all day, happy hour every night and a full breakfast in the morning…..Helpful with our family of 6 and boys that can eat non stop. Steve was so excited with our “luxury” bath that he had to take one while watching the TV above it  Right across the street from our hotel is a ... read more
Red Carpet Club waiting

North America » United States » California » Sacramento January 5th 2008

We made it back, yeah! The flight from London to Los Angeles was long but uneventful. The individual TVs in economy in Air New Zealand helped a lot to pass the time. After going through customs, we gave Mike a hug and said goodbye as he took a Super Shuttle back to UCLA. The rest of us got ready for our Southwest flight back to Sacramento. The flight ended up leaving an hour late and we didn't get back to the house until midnight (9am Spain time). What a long day! Here's our Top Ten experiences from our trip: 1. Sintra - hiking the Moorish castle, enjoying the great views and fairy tale Pena Palace. 2. The Alhambra - learning a lot from our interesting guide and seeing the snow capped Sierra Nevada. 3. Ceremony of ... read more

Europe » United Kingdom » England » Greater London January 4th 2008

We flew from Malaga to London and are spending the night at the Marriott Hotel at Heathrow. We gave ourselves a day in London since our flight from Malaga (British Airways) and flight home (Air New Zealand) were on unconnected airlines and a delay from Malaga could leave us stuck in London. It was a pretty quiet day as we had dinner in the pub at the hotel and then watched some more episodes of Lost before going to bed. Everyone is ready to come home!... read more
Diana and Steve ready to come home

Europe » Gibraltar » Gibraltar January 3rd 2008

Our last day in Spain was a trip to Gibraltar. The day started out with a very hard rainstorm and we were a bit concerned what our day would be like. We had a leisurely morning and the weather seemed to be improving so we hit the road to Gibraltar. Since we were unsure what the weather would bring, the fact the cable car wasn't working, and the prospect of the bus on some tight roads, we decided we would do the taxi tour of Gibraltar. We started off by having the taxi drop us in the main square so we could get some lunch. The kids went to Pizza Hut while Mark and Deb went to a nice pub in Irish Town called the Clipper. After a brief delay in rendezvousing with our taxi driver ... read more
Streets of Gibraltar
The Clipper Pub
Palm Trees with Pubs

Africa » Morocco » Tangier-Tétouan » Tangier January 2nd 2008

We woke early to get picked up at 7:05 for our tour of Tangier, Morocco. It was nice to be part of a tour as they bypassed some of the entry and control checkpoints boarding the ferry that everyone has to go through. The 40 minute ferry ride (catamaran fast ferry) was a bit up and down as the seas were a little rough. However, we arrived in Tangier with no one getting seasick. Whew! We started with a bus tour of the different sections of Tangier. Tangier was an internationally controlled city for much of the 20th century so that definite sections were historically populated by French, Spanish, English and Americans. We were surprised to learn that several celebrities have second residences in Tangier. There certainly are some large large villas in the nicer parts ... read more
Arabic and French are two languages of Morocco
Mike rides a camel!
Walking toward the Casbah (old town)

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