20.06.2006 12 °C
Me and the lovely lady left Hong Kong on 3 March for Western China. In the year and a bit that I spent in HK I never tired of the view over Victoria Harbour to HK island - here it is the day we left; the weather reflects the mood of the people - sad to see us leave.
First stop in China was Xian, it was the capital of China at some point or other in the dim and distant past. Now it is a fairly typical modern Chinese city crammed with people and cars. It does however have the odd novelty attraction such as the Bell Tower pictured below.
We also saw this Dad allowing his kid to play in the street on a 6 lane main road:
Really our sole reason for heading to Xian was to see the Terracota Warriors. They were mightily impressive and well worth the journey.
We left Xian by overnight train for Chengdu then had to take a 5 hour bus on to Chongqing which is at the tail of the Yangtze river (there's some Chinese myth about it being a dragon I believe). It's unlikely many people outside Greater China have heard of Chongqing, which is understandable given the population is only about 20 million!
This is the best place we could find in Chongqing for a photo infront of.
We went to chongqing so as to be able to sail down the Yangtze through the famous three gorges. We cheated a little bit by taking a hydrofoil so as to be able to complete the journey in a day.
The weather was terrible and the water level thanks to the infamous dam has already risen considerably meaning the voyage was not quite as spectacular as we'd hoped, still we did it.
We disembarked at a city called Yishan then moved on to a larger city Wuhan. The people of Wuhan clearly have exceptional taste as we found a Newcastle United shirt hanging on the wall of a bar there.
PLA soldiers on the streets of Wuhan:
We fly back to HK from Wuhan and then onto Singapore to commence our trip through SE Asia.