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Yangshuo

 Cycling Along The Yulong River & Cruising The Li River

Karst Landscape along Yulong River, Yangshuo, China

Karst Landscape along Yulong River, Yangshuo, China

One of the best ways to see the extraordinary scenery is riding a bike along the Yulong River. Here tourism is presently finding its way into the local farmer communities along the river. This area is undergoing a major transition: you see farmers working their rice paddies or taking their animals home in the evening, while others are building bamboo rafts or taking tourists down the river on these floating devices. Some people try to sell conic hats or fruits and most farmers along the river have added a few floors onto their modest dwellings, probably expecting tourists soon wanting to stay out there, away from the hustle of West Street. Continue Reading →

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Yangshuo – Out Worldly In More Than One Way

"Cruises" on Li River, Yangshuo, China

“Cruises” on Li River, Yangshuo, China

What makes this area a prime tourist location are the amazing rock formations that are especially spectacular to watch from the Li or Yulong River. They are best described as a never ending cascade of pointed hills covered with lush green vegetation, often coming in bizarre shapes given names like Moon Hill, Nine Horse Fresco Hill… Continue Reading →

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Macau & Its Portuguese Heritage

Macau lacks the glamour and sophistication of Hong Kong and looks like a lot poorer relative, but it has undergone similar dramatic changes. Now the centre sports lots of neatly renovated old colonial buildings and the whole place is buzzing with Chinese tourists from the mainland

Macau lacks the glamour and sophistication of Hong Kong and looks like a lot poorer relative, but it has undergone similar dramatic changes. Now the centre sports lots of neatly renovated old colonial buildings and the whole place is buzzing with Chinese tourists from the mainland

Macau was our destination for the weekend and also our port of entry into Mainland China. The otherwise scenic one-hour crossing by hydrofoil from Hong Kong unfortunately was more like rushing through a tunnel of fog, the same kind of fog or smog that had blanketed Hong Kong throughout our entire stay. The “Chegada a Macau” is usually via ferry from Hong Kong. Already on the boat, less informed visitors are thrown into confusion by bilingual immigration forms in Cantonese and Portuguese. Continue Reading →

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Tour De Force

Macau – Guangzhou – Guilin – Yangshuo

Gui Lin Train Station, Guilin, China

Gui Lin Train Station, Guilin, China

We decided to describe this first stretch of our trip in “China proper” in great detail, simply to show how easy it is to travel in an environment where communication is rather difficult. It took us about 23 hours to cover the approx. 750 kilometres between Macau and Yangshuo, but it was hardly tiring or boring. The public bus in Macau took us to the border at “Portas de Cerco” where we crossed into Mainland China together with zillions of gamblers who had spent the weekend in Macau. Despite the big crowd things moved smoothly. Continue Reading →

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Flight Cancelled

Arriving in Hong Kong was as much of a shock as a delight: after spending months on small Pacific Islands and in New Zealand with its sheer unlimited space, we were suddenly surrounded by skyscrapers, traffic jams and millions of people rushing around

Arriving in Hong Kong was as much of a shock as a delight: after spending months on small Pacific Islands and in New Zealand with its sheer unlimited space, we were suddenly surrounded by skyscrapers, traffic jams and millions of people rushing around

“Have a nice flight” shouted the driver of the car rental shuttle after dropping us off at the international terminal of Auckland airport. Seconds later our eyes were scanning the huge board listing all departures, one flight was cancelled, flight Cathay Pacific CX 108 to Hong Kong, ours. Not good! Continue Reading →

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One Month Discovering Vietnam

Halong Bay, Vietnam

Halong Bay, Vietnam

We traveled through Vietnam from July 18th to August 18th 2003. First we stayed a few days in Ho Chi Minh City at a friend’s place, visiting the city and discovering the Vietnamese cuisine, which we found extremely delicious. From Ho Chi Minh, we explored the famous and really spectacular Cu Chi Tunnels dug by the Vietcong during the American War as it is called in Vietnam.

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