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Showing posts from May, 2016

Our visit to Tiananmen Square, The Forbidden City and Summer Palace and other tidbits..

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This is the ninth post in the Ni ha (Hello) China Travelogue.


After a glorious week in Guangzhou, we travelled to Beijing via their speed or bullet train. We travelled at an average speed of 307 kilometers per hour and arrived in Beijing after 8 hours.  As we travelled through the countryside,we could see the many rice paddies.

Interesting nuggets we learned from our tour guide Kong Li (Leo) Our travel guide in Beijing was Leo. Leo is the 76th generation of Confucius, a history that he is very proud of. Leo may not be the philosopher his ancestor was, but he is a brilliant tour guide and an entrepreneur de luxe ! Because of his ingenuity and his amazing network of contacts, we had hitched rides on the rickshaws and had lunch in one of the hutongs - the old courtyard style residential areas reminiscent of the old Beijing.




After Leo had shared how each child is given a seal that contains your family name and the animal category you belong to, we were all gaga and ordered seals for our…

Cruising on the Pearl River in Guangzhou on a starry night.

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This is post number eight in the Ni hao (Hello) China Travelogue.




We knew we were ending our stay in South China with a cruise on the Pearl River, but not in my wildest dreams did I expect such a spectacular experience.

It was drizzling and foggy almost the entire day, but the evening of our river cruise the heavens opened.







We boarded our boat and were mesmerized for the next hour or so. All the buildings that surround the Pearl River switch on their headlights to create a static pyrotechnic display. Each of the riverboats glittered with their neon displays on the dark river waters. Even the bridges became part of this multi-coloured, fantastic playground.

The Pearl river is 2,400 kilometers long and it is the third largest river in China.







Then the highlight of the river cruise appeared. There she was, with her slim waist and her rhythmic dress transformation: The Canton Tower in all its glory! We were mesmerized. As the boat cruised, our Lady Canton teased in the distance. It was su…

We spent The Public Holiday getting to know our city.

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My sisters and I decided to explore Cape Town City Centre.

We decided to travel by train - 3rd class - to Cape Town. Our first bonus was that the total cost for our return tickets from Plumstead to Cape Town, was a mere R45,00.


Our first stop was the Apache Spur because Hilary was hungry. Once the tummies were sorted, we went to the Slave Lodge.





 We met Ms Williams with a few of her Littlewood Primary School learners  at the Slave Lodge. Ms Williams explained that she brought these learners on this outing because they earned it. Imagine giving up your public holiday to take children out! 


I acted as a tour guide for my sisters, remembering some of the details we were given when our education district visited the Slave Lodge.  As expected, my siblings loved the exhibitions. They listened to all the audio recordings and spent a lot of time admiring the silverware, artworks and the fashion displays.



After the Slave Lodge tour, we walked through the Company gardens, munching on nuts an…