Archives For Tourist Sites

Recently, I have had friends in China tell me about the snow they have had lately. Some live as far north as Shenyang, in the Liaoning Province and others as far south as Linyi, in the Shandong Province. Hopefully this will ease the minds of those of you that were worried about Beijing not having snow for the upcoming Winter Olympic Games!

China does practice cloud seeding, so they can try to generate some snow if they need more for the Olympics. Also, I am sure they can make snow if any is needed. I was told that Russia considered trucking in snow if they didn’t have enough falling naturally when they hosted the Winter Olympics, so China may try that as well.

This picture was from a few years ago in Beijing. Actually it was in March, so it was kind of a surprise to see this much snow so late in the year. Nonetheless, it is beautiful. That is, until people start driving on it and the snow turns black. I love how snow makes the area so quiet and peaceful. Maybe one day I will have a white Christmas, as the song says.

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The pagoda above usually has lots of foot traffic around it, but not on this morning! To battle traffic, Beijing wants 8% of the commuters to travel by bikes, but that wouldn’t have been a good idea on this day. The shelter in the picture below is for bikes, but I don’t think many people ventured out on bikes this day. Traffic in Beijing is always interesting; especially when it snows!

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As you know from my previous blog, the river cruises at night are very impressive along the Huangpu River in Shanghai.  The boats cruise along the area of Shanghai known as the Bund.  You can see many interesting and contrasting types of architecture along the bund.  There are several older European style building, traditional Chinese, and very modern building to view from the boats.

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If you enjoy history, you should check out the history of Shanghai.  If you do, you will understand more about how the European type of architecture came to be in Shanghai.  The first time I saw these buildings, it was a huge surprise to me.  I just didn’t expect to see that style of buildings in China.

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Probably the most famous building along the Bund is the Pearl TV Tower.  It is a huge structure with a hotel, restaurants, and shopping in it.  I can only imagine how wonderful the view must be from the top of the Pearl TV Tower.

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The ending of the trip was spectacular!  The lights on some of the buildings change, so as we were concluding our cruise, I got a wonderful picture!

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As you have probably deduced, this character is for Shanghai, so we got a great view of the building displaying I heart Shanghai!  How appropriate for the evening we had been enjoying!

If you will recall from my first blog about the river boat cruises along the Huangpu River in Shanghai, the Bund is an amazing area to see.  Not only are there several gorgeous buildings to see, but the boats on the river are interesting as well.

The boat we used was a large, clean and new; so it was wonderful.  There were a few similar boats cruising the river, but they were not as large as the one we occupied.

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Frequently a police boat would speed up and come fairly close to the back of our boat, but then it would leave us and go view another of the large cruise boats.  If any boat had a problem, I am confident that there were several boats that could respond quickly and render aid.

There was also a boat on the river resembling a steam boat, like once was commonly seen on the Mississippi River.  We did not get close enough to tell if it truly was a steam boat, but it certainly did look like one!

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As you can see from the picture above, there was also a boat that resembled a sail boat.  With the light along the features of the boat, it certainly stood out against the water and city!  If you have a chance, I highly recommend taking a river cruise along the Bund in Shanghai China!

Huangpu River Cruises

August 18, 2015 — 1 Comment

A very popular sightseeing event in Shanghai is to take a river cruise around the Bund at night.  I did this in the month of May, so the weather was perfect!  Many things come into play before boarding the river boat, thankfully, I had people helping me.  There are multiple boats, so you need to know which one you want to use.  Some are old and some are old.  It is crowded at the docks, so getting thickets early is very important!  We actually had a friend go to the docks ahead of us to buy our tickets.  Once we arrived at the river, we were given our tickets.

The next step was to line up and in the boarding area.  My friend told us where to go, but I believe our tickets indicated in which line we should be.  There was quite a crowd in the holding area, and we had to wait several minutes before we were allowed to board the boat, but it was well worth the wait!

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As we approached our boat, I was pleased with what I saw.  Our boat was new, large, clean, and ready to go!

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From the street where we entered the ticket area, I had no idea we were so close to the beautiful sight above.  The river was right there, and we could easily see the lights of the Bund reflecting on the river!  This truly was impressive and exceeded my expectations!

Gunagqi Park

July 28, 2015 — Leave a comment

There is a lovely park in the middle of downtown Shanghai called Guangqi Park.  Guangqi Xu was a famous scholar, and he was born to a poor farming family in Shanghai in 1562.  His father was somehow able to pay for his son to go to school, and at the age of 19, Guangqi Xu graduated from college!

Guangqi Xu is known for many things, including translating the Euclid’s Elements from Latin into Chinese.  He actually translated many books going from Chinese to Latin and Latin to Chinese.  He worked with the famous Italian, Matteo Ricci.

Guangqi Xu was most respected for his work in agriculture, astronomy, military science, and math.  He was appointed to serve in the courts of the Ming Dynasty, where he wrote a book about military science.  This wasn’t received well by the military men, because Guangqi Xu was an academic person, not a warrior.  He was concerned about protecting China from invaders, and he a philosophy about rich countries and strong armies.  Ironically, Japan used his philosophy, and they invaded China.

Here are a few pictures of the park named for Guangqi Xu.  If you will notice the mound of dirt in the open area in the second picture, that is where Guangqi Xu is buried.

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I can’t imagine how valuable this property is with its great location in downtown Shanghai.  The city’s willingness to keep the park honoring him indicates how well respected he is in China!

Shade!

May 8, 2014 — Leave a comment

Certain areas of China get very hot in the summer; therefore many people try to stay cool in the shade. A couple of hot cities I have visited are Shanghai and Xian. Shanghai feels hotter than it is because of the high humidity. Wow, one summer, when I went to Xian, the weather was so hot, that I couldn’t get my hotel room cool enough!

 

To beat the heat in China, the people find various ways of staying in the shade. As this first picture shows, the police in Tiananmen Square have large umbrellas to stand under― and they need them! As you can imagine, Tiananmen Square is very hot and crowded in the summer, and the cement surface absorbs the heat and makes the day that much hotter. I couldn’t imagine standing for a shift in all the heat and direct exposure to the sun.

 

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People that work outside wear hats designed to keep the sun off of them. These hats are commonly seen in China.

 

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The Chinese have beautiful skin with its nice olive tone, yet many Chinese want to avoid letting their skin get darker. For that reason, on hot days and when the sun is out, it is also common to see people protecting themselves from the sun by wearing full-face reflective sun visors (like sunglasses) that shield the entire face, ladies carrying umbrellas or wearing long gloves, and taxi drivers wearing gloves.

 

Hopefully, you now have a greater appreciation for the need for shade in China, and understand how refreshing it is to have a pagoda for some shade.

 

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Beau

 

To learn more about China, check out Lessons from China: A Westerner’s Cultural Education!

 

More Than One Way to Get Lessons From China!

Lessons from China: A Westerner’s Cultural Education now available as a paperback and as an e-book on Amazon’s Kindle and Barnes & Noble’s Nook!

 

You can buy Lessons from China on Amazon.com, Smile.Amazon.com (to donate a portion of the sale to Global Partners in Life), bn.com, and in Barnes and Noble stores and a variety of other bookstores and online booksellers.

 

Note: If you don’t see the book on the shelf at your local bookstore, just ask the sales clerk to order it for you. The booksellers are eager to accommodate you, whenever possible. Independent bookstores can order the book through Bookmasters.

 

Upon arrival in any city, there are standard things a traveler wants: a clean, polished, and well-organized airport, quick and convenient transportation to and from the airport, and a comfortable place to sleep at the end of the day.
Pudong Int Airport in Shanghai

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