Beijing the mountainous #summerpalace and that famous bar place erm o #houhai

So I made it back to England alright and I’ve just got over the jet lag. 🙂

The last few days of Beijing were full and fun packed… kind of. Everyone was tired from their traveling adventure and envied me for staying in Xian for an extra few days.
So the to dos were:
Lama Temple, it was cool!
Summer Palace, it was awesome!
Went to the temple around the corner from the Lama Temple which is called Confucius Temple, which was pretty big.

By far the Summer Palace was on top of my to do list. I heard so many good things about it, but I had to go by myself. Everyone else was too tired to go (hungover from the night before!) So for my last day in China I went off to the Summer Palace by myself. Acting like I knew exactly where I was going I ended up walking round in circles outside Beigongmen Subway Station, still maintaining the look. Of course I found the entrance after walking past all the exits to the subway. (The entrance was behind the exit labelled summer palace exit… toz knew that)

The Palace building didn’t look much like what I had imagined. Then again I have only seen European Palaces. For a start you had to adventure around rocks in order to get up to the main palace buildings. (Something you don’t really expect when you have hiked mountains by climbing up stairs)

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The walk ways had gorgeous paintings running alongside.

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There were big temple like buildings with Buddha’s featuring both inside and outside. The downside was that you weren’t to take photos inside the buildings.

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Outside was some wonderful scenery. The key feature was the lake. It was massive. I mean massive. Shunde eat your heart out massive.

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The gardens were pretty amazing. (Loved the fish BTW *Thumbs up*)

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And finally the shopping street, where if you were too slow then you either had to buy something or get pushed into the water. I lie it was an awesome last minute souvenir shopping paradise so long as you know the realistic price of the items! (Chopsticks aren’t 65 Y!!)

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Ok so shopping in Beijing was expensive if you didn’t know the actual price of the item. Positives of going round China is that you see the real price of souvenirs from that area of China. For example shadow puppets in Xi’an start from 10 Y, in Beijing costs more like 65 Y, unless you turn round to the stall keeper and laugh at their face and say the actual price you may still be paying over the odds for it.

My friends were still, hungover/ asleep / out / dead in the evening so I caught up with the people I met on the train, for diner and a night out. Its a shame really never actually got to say goodbye to the people I had been traveling with. Anyway coming from Beijing I thought they would know good places to visit… they did, but they had never been there before… so where did we go?

Houhai!!!

That famous bar street??? I never heard of it until they suggested it and I looked it up.

So I adventured onto a bus and played guess the symbols, simple where am I? Where am I going? How many stops? Got on the bus and for the first time there was someone sat behind a counter, thought this is odd, gave her the kuai she gave me a ticket… that was that… it was all in English. The most amusing part of the bus journey was when the bus hit the wing mirror of another bus and stopped and blocked the road whilst the bus drivers were there patting the wing mirror on for 10 / 15 minutes before giving up. Interesting.

Got to Houhai after a long winding walk though a housing estate. (Houhai doesn’t seem that easy to get to.) We got to go on the lake it was fun, the guy talked to his mum on the phone for most of the time. We walked around the lake deciding where to eat, they told me to pick…. I don’t know much Chinese and I didn’t fancy the western restaurant because it was my last day in China, can have proper western food at home. So we grabbed a yogurt drink which Beijing people seem to love (Tastes like thick Yakult, it’s in a small glass milk bottle with a paper lid put in place by an elastic band).

Failing to decide upon a place to eat we adventured back to the hostel I was staying at… the heavens had literally opened, it was pouring it down, and water was rising. I did get soaked, and we settled for the first place that was still open and at a fair price. The food was good, had chicken neck, rice that tasted like Marmite, and a bit of tofu.

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