Xizhou Village on the Edge

I suppose most villages in China –  if they have survived wars, earthquakes and the relentless passage of time – could be considered Ancient Towns.  Some have achieved status as World Heritage sites – Lijiang and Pingyao – or as AAAAA Tourist Attractions – Zhouzhuang and Dali.  But some are just there… like Xizhou Village, on the edge of famous Dali Ancient Town and on … Continue reading Xizhou Village on the Edge

Wuzhen Water Town Before

Wuzhen is a water town located on the Grand Canal near Hangzhou.  It has a really great PR campaign and I had been saving its Facebook posts for over a year – compelling images and dreamy ideals.  When I finally had a chance to visit, I was so disappointed.  It did not live up to my expectations, but maybe the hype had been just too … Continue reading Wuzhen Water Town Before

Charming Qibao Hidden in Shanghai

Ancient Qiboa Zhen – Seven Treasures Town seems hidden inside ultra-modern Shanghai.  I’ve seen a lot of the city of Shanghai, but not this little gem. Like other ancient towns, it is a square centered over a canal, with iconic bridges and weeping willows, striking doors and specialty shops. A long and busy shopping street runs down the middle. Near the end, I find a … Continue reading Charming Qibao Hidden in Shanghai

Xi’an Inside and Outside the Wall

Central to the mega-city of Xi’an is a mammoth and ancient city wall.  There is so much to explore, one way to set a program in the city is the delineate between what is inside and outside the great wall of Xi’an. Outside the wall – on the outskirts of the city – is the stunning Terracotta Warrior exhibit that is almost synonymous with Xi’an … Continue reading Xi’an Inside and Outside the Wall

The Wonders of the Wild Goose Pagodas

They are actually mis-named, according to my Xi’an guide who was fastidious about English. “It was a poor translation! It should be Wild Swan Pagodas”  he said, and I agree. Goose is not nearly as elegant a word as swan, and this temple complex in Xi’an is certainly elegant, and more!  Both the Big and the Small Wild Goose Pavilions are in the center of … Continue reading The Wonders of the Wild Goose Pagodas

Highlights of Hefei – My Home in China

Hefei, capital of Anhui province, is a small Chinese city of 7 million, my home in China. Each year, I spend from 3 weeks to 3 months at USTC. The University of Science and Technology of China, one of China’s most prestigious universities, has played a major role in turning Hefei into an academic, research and industrial powerhouse. Hence, Hefei is not known as a … Continue reading Highlights of Hefei – My Home in China

China at 300 kms/hr: Train Travel Tips so you Relax and Enjoy the View

China has countless historic sites and ultra-modern cities to explore, but another great attraction is the countryside and a perfect way to see it is on China’s amazing high speed trains.  Maybe you have had trouble “picturing” what China really looks like, so here are some scenes from my recent train travels, and some lessons I learned to make the travel relaxing, especially if, like … Continue reading China at 300 kms/hr: Train Travel Tips so you Relax and Enjoy the View