Sunday, August 29, 2010

China Updates…

The trip is coming closers now, only 1 month and 10 days! Our planning continues and I think the final plan is official on Trip It. We will spend more time in Shanghai (October 10th to October 18th) to get the full World Fair experience as well as the Shanghai culture, food, sights etc.. We will head to Beijing on October 18th on a night train and arrive at 11am - just enough time to catch a few hours of the countryside, something I wanted to see on the way there instead of passing by on a plane.

I've also learned a lot more about what Beijing has to offer including the rich history of the Forbidden City, Temple of Heaven, Great Wall and the old and new Beijing that we will undoubtedly see while riding bikes or electric scooters around town. Another major attraction for me is the various Buddhist temples, some from the 14th century. I want to see how they live, eat their veggie food, and experience their peace, meditation and spiritualization. I absolutely want to see the real Beijingnese and Shanghainese while were there as well. I don't want to feel so touristy that I'm whisked away to popular tourist events all day - so I found some small towns where they still live in the same living conditions of the Song era and the houses are the same too -amazing. I will miss a lot out of China too, of course,  the Yellow River, Huangshou mountains (Avatar!) and most of the small villages around that will be too far to venture out to just for a day. Since our time is limited, we will leave that for another trip...

There is more to learn, especially Mandarin, and I'm still thinking about picking a Chinese name (the travel show we watched today had a guy named Plum Blossom), so if there are any recommendations, I would appreciate it!