Stranger Danger

A few days ago in the Chinese media there was a news article about a foreigner fainting on the subway in Shanghai, and instead of someone coming to help him, or at least going to get help, every single person in the train disappeared like a fart in the wind, leaving the man laying on the floor.

Scam City – How to Not Get Ripped Off in China

When you travel, you should always be careful about what you do, who you talk to and what you agree to. After all, you are an outsider in a place you’ve never been before, you don’t know where you’re going, you may only be there for a few days, and there are always a few…

Solo in Xi’an

There is a 311 song that goes, “If you don’t have someone to do it with, it’s not worth doing.”  After my recent adventures in China, I have to now say I whole-heartedly disagree! I know a lot of people who swear by travelling alone. They say it gives you a chance to do what…

300,000

A few days ago I went to a place in Nanjing that I knew was not going to be a pretty sight — the Nanjing Massacre Museum and Memorial which documents the Japanese invasion of the city in the 1930s which is estimated to have killed about 300,000 people. Many people have heard of the…

Sights of Nanjing

So enough about cultural insights… how about some pictures? It’s been an incredibly busy few days in Nanjing, with lots of UNESCO World Heritage Sites to visit, and things to see. I was pleasantly surprised by how nice Nanjing is! The Ming Tombs: These impressive stone statues line the entrance to one of Nanjing’s UNESCO…

Only the Lonely

One of the first things I’ve noticed about Nanjing is that there are very, very few foreigners, so as a result, I definitely stick out.  I am guessing that if you live here, you better get used to the staring. Every time I’ve been on the train, I’ve been the only “round-eye” there, and without…

The lamb in the lion’s den

Is there such a thing as an honest taxi driver in Asia? Although in the “first world” parts of Asia like Singapore, Hong Kong and Japan the cabs are well regulated and always run on metres, in the rest of Asia…. well, good luck. I arrived on Monday morning at the surprisingly pleasant Nanjing International…

Guangzhou – the real China!

Guangzhou holds the reputation of being ‘the place where everything on earth is made’. That means that the plastic keypad on my computer was made in Guangzhou, the telephone on my desk was made in Guangzhou, and, most likely, the Marks and Spencer blouse, which I am wearing right now, was made in Guangzhou. And…

Taipei traipsing

Usually people spend the days leading up to a trip choosing their clothes, planning their itineraries, poring through guidebooks and circling what they want to see. It’s supposed to be an exciting time; heck, half the fun of travelling is planning the trip. But unfortunately, thanks to a dreadful stomach bacteria, I spent the days…

Holy Mount Emei, Sichuan Province, China

Well, I fought the mountain, and the mountain won. I admit it, we got our asses kicked. The holy mountain climbing expedition didn’t go exactly as we had originally planned. In fact, the whole trip was definitely more challenging (both mentally and physically) than we could have possibly anticipated. But I will say this: it…

The Great Wall — A True Wonder of the World

Without a doubt the best thing I saw during this Beijing trip was the Great Wall of China. It was unforgettable. The words I would use to describe it are incredible, astounding, unbelievable, unimaginable. How on earth they ever built such a mind-blowing and bizarre structure, and so many years ago, is beyond comprehension. Snaking…

The Best of Beijing

. To me, it is always with great sadness and regret that a trip must inevitably come to an end (unless you’ve had an awful time and you couldn’t wait for it to be over). One second I was in Beijing, standing in a beautiful, incense bathed courtyard of a Buddhist monastery watching shaven-headed monks…

Planes, trains, and really fast automobiles

Okay okay, so maybe I lied a little in that title — there were no planes, and we took a ferry to Macau instead of a train, but we certainly did see some VERY fast automobiles last weekend. Macau is a small island (well, technically two) in southern China that is an easy 1-hour ferry…