We recently returned from a rather magical trip, travelling China.
As promised, here’s a little post and some pics.
We walked. We flew. We trammed. We taxied. We bussed. We trained. We ferried. We missioned from Hong Kong to Beijing and all the way back again and came home very happy, very exhausted, China travellers. Garth and I really made the most of it – eating everything and anything, guzzling back local beers, lest we forget getting lost and frustrated a few times.
We took a million happy snaps on my DSLR but our film pics were by far my favourite. Here are a few as well as a super abridged version of our Asian adventure. *Cool story behind the camera we used: Garth’s film camera bust on our first day in HK so we took it to a camera store that my cousin frequents. The little old man behind the counter said he’d need a while to fix it but gave us one of his cameras to use while we travelled the rest of China. 100% trust and awesomeness right there!
We kicked off our journey in Hong Kong, staying with my cousin and her husband and explored Sai Kung, Kowloon, The Island, Mong Kok and everywhere in between – with highlights including The Peak, Big Buddha and a night involving 3 bottles of Sake and a 6am home time. Oh and Garth got the most epic haircut at a traditional men’s salon by a Korean man with spectacular eyebrows, who said not one word for the entire hour we were there. It was a gamble, but one that turned out to be in our favour ‘cuz Garth’s new cut was fresh to death.
From there we had a quick overnight in Xiamen, exploring the art district near the varsity, eating fish balls and buying some local music while meeting up with Garth’s friend Chris and his lovely girlfriend Charlene.
Next up was Shanghai where I was reunited with a dear friend I’d made while living in India, as well as her beautiful family. We stayed in an amazing backpackers called Ming Town Youth Hostel, right on the Bund. The Natural Science and History museum was mindblowing as was the vegetarian meal we had at Jing’An Temple. We had an all round magnificent time in Shanghai, despite the rain! Actually, the rain was damn beautiful. We also popped over to the Island and saw sections where the movie “Her” was filmed – sups futuristic with tall buildings disappearing into the mist. The Tschumi exhibition at The Power Station of Art also made for some good memories.
From Shanghai, we headed to Beijing and after fleeing from the world’s sketchiest backpackers at the ass end of a hutong (Beijing alley) we settled at the GORGEOUS Peking Youth Hostel. The Forbidden City, Temple of Heaven, a failed attempt to see a Yoko Ono exhibition and (drumroll) THE GREAT WALL OF CHINA were just some of the highlights. We got the coldest beer of our whole trip up on the Great Wall as well as the creepiest foot massage at a parlour near our hostel. My personal favourite memory was stumbling upon a tiny craft beer parlour run by a quiet old man and his pretty young daughter. He didn’t say much to us (his only two patrons) but hummed along to his music and offered Garth a cigarette like a real gent.
The longest train ride ever brought us back to Xiamen to spend a night on the creepy, strange, beautiful, Gulangyu Island with Chris and Charlene, and we chatted and drank on the roof until 2am, marvelling at the city lights across the water. Such poetry. Very prose.
We spent our last weekend back in HK, enjoying a hike in Sai Kung and a swim in the pacific ocean at Trio Beach. I also got tattooed by my cousin’s husband, Rich Phipson at their amazing studio – Starcrossed Tattoos.
It’s safe to say that travelling China was one of the best trips I’ve taken, and I’ll be back for sure!
I’m busy making a little video of our travels so look out for that 🙂
Pics taken on Nikkormat, 35mm. No editing.