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China

China

Inside Beijing’s North Korean restaurant

When I lived in Beijing, there was one place that I knew I wanted to go but I wasn’t too sure if I had the guts. The North Korean restaurant. The first time, we got to the door and then decided maybe it wasn’t such a good idea. We were a bit put off by the blacked out windows and random sounding music coming from the room. But then the second time, I went with another group of people and…

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China

How to travel by train in China

If there’s something you need to commend China for (and there are lots of things) it’s definitely their train network. The most impressive train system in the world connects big cities such as Beijing and Shanghai to pretty much anywhere you can think of. It’s so easy to travel by train now in the country that taking a train instead of a plane is just more convenient. Take Beijing to Xi’an for example. The fast train takes 5 hours but…

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China

Reasons to go to Guilin & Yangshuo

Before I left China I had a list. I know. I became one of those people who has a list of things to do – i’m not really a fan of those but when it came to leaving China I was determined that I was going to see as much of the country as possible. When it came to deciding where to go, I knew the first two stops on my mini tour of China. Guilin and Yangshuo. I had…

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China

Seeing the pandas in Chengdu

If you mention China and pandas it’s most likely that your thought goes straight to Chengdu which is home to the country’s largest panda base. Many people visit Chengdu just to see the pandas and then get to know the cool city that it is – think hotpot and historical attractions along with cool mountain hikes. I visited the city during Chinese New Year with some friends from Xi’an and we were determined to see as much of the city…

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China

Things you’re usually asked in a Chinese taxi

Taking a taxi in China is always a bit of an adventure especially if you’re out in the sticks. If you can speak some mandarin it’s even more awkward and mildly enjoyable as the drivers like to interview you about your lives and of course talk some controversial politics. Having lived in different cities in China, I can definitely say the drivers in Xi’an were the most inquisitive and wanted to chat even after the journey had eneded. So here’s the top…

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China

Hong Kong Airlines and being pepper sprayed

I hadn’t been able to sleep the night before. It had been four years since I left Hong Kong, the beautiful city I had studied abroad in for a semester. Quite frankly, it had been four years too long. Sat on the airport express, I was pumped, ready to go and even in the mood for a celebratory selfie. Fast forward two hours and I was sat on my backpack of Beijing airport’s floor still waiting for check in to open.…

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China

The best ways to see the Great Wall of China

The Great Wall of China is quite honestly a beast. But it’s the one beast people have at the top of their bucket list when they visit the country. Hell, i’ve even heard of people skipping Beijing, heading straight to the wall and flying back out again (i’m not recommending that). There are so many options for visiting the wall, whether its staying in a nice hotel, camping on the actual wall or just heading there for the day and…

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China

2.91 billion journeys? It must be Chinese New Year!

This weekend the ‘Spring Festival rush’ kicked off in China. It’s a time when everyone begins to start the long journey home to celebrate Chinese New Year which falls on January 28. It’s estimated that 2.91 billion journeys will be made this year during the 40 day period.  I thought it would be interesting to take a look at because it’s something that is a big part of Chinese culture and also helps show that there’s more to the middle kingdom’s…

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China

China’s freezing Disneyland: Harbin Snow and Ice Festival

No this isn’t a scene from Frozen, this is Harbin Snow and Ice Festival in China. Possibly my favourite trip that I did while living in China and also the most costly to get to. Every year in January and February people rush to northern China to see the year’s Ice and Snow Festival, thought to the the biggest in the world. Sculptors from around the world join together to create the amazing snow and ice wonderland, carving the blocks…

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China

Spending Christmas in Sanya, a Chinese paradise

“It doesn’t really feel like Christmas at all” Having landed back in China at the beginning of November, it was absolutely freezing cold. I couldn’t believe the sheer difference in temperature from Xi’an to Beijing. Feeling like some warmth and good times with friends was needed, a group of us decided to take some time off and head out to China’s Hawaii for Christmas. It was one of those things where we hadn’t seen each other for a couple of…

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