Monday, November 14, 2011

China trip!

Hello :)
I told you I'd update this blog didn't I? Anyway so today I'm going to talk about the China trip. I don't have any pictures because I haven't downloaded the digital ones, some of them are on my computer and I only have a hard copy of some of them. Anyway, you can search on Google if you're really that bothered.

We set off on our epic adventure on October 19th 2011. We were flying from Manchester Airport to Dubai airport and then onto China! We were flying on Emirates, which was so awesome. They had perfume and hand cream in the plane toilets (which I suspect was free, I mean I used some so...), I didn't even have to use my iPod on the way there (because the inflight entertainment was absolutely amazing. I must have watched about 50 Disney films) and the food. Oh my goodness, for plane food, that stuff was so nice. And it doesn't help that you are 30,000 ft in the air either. But anyway, after two 7 hour flights and a three hour stop over in Dubai, we finally made it!

As soon as we got onto the coach to the hotel, we were informed that our original hotel could not cater for us for the first two days of our trip, so we had to go into a different hotel. Hotel number 1 was... well... Decent. But, after two minutes of being in the hotel room, we had established that the Chinese were perverts; there was a window between the bathroom and the actual room. Luckily there was a curtain, and it wasn't that bad, but still, who watches other people shower! Creepy. (No offence if you are Chinese though)

This was our itinery -
Day 1:
- We visited a Chinese copper factory. Let me just say, no wonder China is so polluted. The smell was horrible.
- We continued onto the Ming Tombs. There wasn't really anything that exciting here, but it was still nice to have a walk around.
- At lunchtime, we visited the restaurant, and then walked around the adjoining Jade factory. Did you know that Emerald is a form of Jade? Yeah, I do.
- After lunch, we visited the Great Wall. I'm going to brag here and say that yes I did climb up as far as we could go, and yes, I would do it again!

Day 2:
- We had to pack our cases and move hotels today. I have to say that the second hotel was so much nicer.
- We visited the Olympic stadium.!This is so much better than the London one. Seriously.
- We visited the Summer Palace, but we didn't actually go there, because we didn't have enough time, but we walked around the shops instead, which was cool.
- The best part of the day was the Chinese market. It was brutal haggling at the stalls, but eventually on the Tuesday, I mastered it!

Day 3:
- The Forbidden city was one of our attractions today. It was raining though, so it kind of put an downer on our day. It was okay though.
- We also visited Tian'men square or whatever it is called. There wasn't much there.
- We visited a pearl factory today too. They taught us how to distinguish real pearls from fake pearls. After you've seen a few different factories though, it kind of gets a bit boring. (No offence intended there)
- To the markets we went again. I got lots more bargains. :)

Day 4:
- Today we visited a Chinese school. They had 7 floors. And a swimming pool. And about 500 different staff rooms. Wow.

Day 5:
- Our last full day in China. We went back to the school to do a Caligraphy lesson and a Chinese watercolour painting lesson.
- We also visited our final landmark, which was the temple of heaven. It was okay.
- The markets beckoned us again, and I spent the last of my Yuan! :)
- We then had to wake up at 4am the next morning, and catch a plane to go home.

The plane ride home:
- Conpletele seriousness here - I actually didn't think we would get home on that plane. It was awful. We had really bad turbulence, and to top it all off, it was dark outside as well. It was just great. :/

Overall, I would have liked to have had a bit more time looking around the monuments and landmarks, but besides that (and the squat toilets - luckily I didn't have to use them) it was a brilliant trip, and I would love to go again sometime. :)

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