Suzhou, China

China: Water Towns of the Yangtze River Delta – Suzhou

China: Water Towns of The Yangtze River Delta Visitors go to the water towns of the Yangtze River Delta to get away from the bustle of the nearby cities of Hangzhou and Shanghai.  They come to absorb the beauty of the Classical Gardens and to bask in quiet of the tiny lanes along murky canals. The famous city of Suzhou and the towns of Tongli, Luzhi, Zhujiajiao, Xitang, Wuzhen, Nanxun, and Zhouzhuang each draw thousands of[…]

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Harbin, China

Tigers and Ice – A Brief Guide to Harbin

Tigers and Ice A Brief Guide to Harbin’s Attractions (China)   Harbin lies in China’s far northeastern province of Heilongjiang. The city has long had a distinctly international flavor. In the late 19th century, Russia based the administration of the recently constructed eastern section of the Trans-Siberian railroad in Harbin.  This led to the influx of a large Russian minority to the city.  These imigrants influenced everything from architecture to education and even today the city has[…]

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Fenghuang China

China: Fenghuang – a short guide to the Phoenix Ancient Town

Fenghuang, China A Short Guide to the Phoenix Ancient Town Fenghuang – the Phoenix Ancient Town is one of China’s most famous “Ancient Cities.” Stone streets meander under the peaked eves of the famous old houses that make up the core of the town.  The broad Tuojiang River drifts placidly down the center of the historic district adding a kind of magic to what has become a busy, commercial tourist zone. Early in the morning, a[…]

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Ronghui Hotsprings in Chongqing, China

Hot Pot and Hotsprings – 24 Hours in Chongqing, China

Everest to Shenzhen An overland journey from one side of China to the other Part VII: Hot Pot and Hotsprings – 24 Hours in Chongqing, China   Chongqing is a huge city. Many in China claim it is the world’s largest city. If you count all of the rural areas inside the government’s administrative boundaries, they are right. The administrative area of Chongqing has an estimated population of just over 30 million.  The urban area of Chongqing, however,[…]

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Tashi Lhunpo Monastery in Shigatse Tibet

Tibet: A Night in Shigatse

Everest to Shenzhen An overland journey from one side of China to the other Part V: Shigatse The Torture Chair The masseuse’s elbows and arms dug into my shoulders and back with an impatient furury that brought tears to my eyes. ‘did I do something to offend her?’ I wondered. We lay face-down on reclining message chairs in the spa behind our hotel in Shigatse. Three straight days of driving coupled with an uncomfortable night on a[…]

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Gyantse, Tibet

Tibet: The Ancient Majesty of Gyantse City

Everest to Shenzhen An overland journey from one side of China to the other Part III: Majestic Gyantse When the little van carrying me and five of my friends pulled up to the wall of the Pelkhor Chode Monestary in Gyantse, I thought we we’d arrived in Shigatse. We’d been on the road from Lhasa for more than eight hours even though the itinerary provided by our tour company estimated a seven hour drive. Indeed, that is the[…]

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Hein Nhon Gate in Ancient Hue, Vietnam

Vietnam: Three Things I Loved about Hue

Three Things I Loved About Hue (that have nothing to do with history) In addition to the architectural remnants of the city’s rich (and tragic) history Hue has a fun and casual vibe and some of the best food in Vietnam. When you visit Hue, take a trip on the Perfume River, explore the Dong Ba Market, try to catch some traditional Vietnamese music, and don’t forget to try all of the food. Here are[…]

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