Beijing ~ Melbourne By High-Speed Train

 

Paul Chong

Wednesday, 29 November 2017

 

As it is Australia is one huge continent with great distances from north to south & east to west. It is a country, a continent and an island. It is located in Oceania between the Indian Ocean and the South Pacific Ocean.

The vast distances between places make it expensive to travel domestically. Most Australian find it more worthwhile to travel abroad to Bali, Thailand, Malaysia & Singapore. In 3 years, we will take a trip across all the borders from North to South.

But not for long now. Changes are in the horizon & within three years,high-speed train will be coming to Australia. In 3 years, we will take a trip across all the borders from North to South. Distance barriers will become a thing of the past.

Starting at Beijing thereafter, along the South Canton line, from Nanning into Indo-China, Malay Peninsula passing through Hanoi, Vientiane, Bangkok, Kuala Lumpur, Singapore and other important cities, thereafter through Malacca Strait tunnel into Indonesia’s Pulau Sumatera, the Indonesian Archipelago, passing through Jakarta, Bandung, and other Indonesian cities, through to Australia via The Northern Territories capital, Darwin, spanning a 550-kilometre trip cross-Sea bridge into Australia’s East Coast via Cairns, Brisbane, Sydney, Canberra to the train terminal at Melbourne.

Built by China Railway on a turnkey contract, with total length of project 13000 km, for the entire viaduct Railway, design of 2 sea-crossing tunnels, 5 bridges, at highest speed of 400 km per hour, and at a total investment of 460 billion U.S. dollar.

The Chinese-led Asian Infrastructure investment Bank will provide financial support to all countries along the way.

After completion of the project, the trip from Melbourne to Beijing via high-speed train is expected to be within 48 hours, with fare control within 1000 Australian dollars. Annual passenger throughput is expected to reach 200 million persons each year. For countries along the way it will bring direct economic benefits of more than 200 billion U.S. dollars.

The project expected to commence early 2018 and completed by end 2020.

Along the way, you can enjoy different customs and natural landscapes of Australia and Southeast Asia, and enjoy delicious food from all over the world. As the train passes through every country, the country’s attendants will provide services for the railway.

It’s a changing world we live in. Make sure you live healthily to usher in this new era of fast-speed transportation. Passengers can expect to travel in great comfort, apart from high speed, & if not more comfortable than the airlines & more affordable.

Update Insertion: 7 January 2019

Isn’t it time for the Aussie Government  to consider upgrading the domestic rail infrastructure? Both the Indian Pacific Rail & the Ghan (the Great Southern Rail) are old & outdated. More popularity, convenience & speed would be afforded to serve this great continent of ours with the recommended High Speed Rail system from China. Think what will all this mean!

 

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China’s New Sheraton Hotel

Paul Chong / Thursday, 20 November 2014 

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When my wife & I first went to China in 1989, we were tremendously impressed with the standard & range of design with their five-star hotels in each of the cities we visited. In Beijing we stayed in Kunming Hotel, Shanghai was Sheraton Hotel with its fantastic indoor fountain which responded synchronising with the music played and I still recall the marvellous White Swan Hotel in Guangzhou. They even had a fleet of Mercedes for guests’ use.

That was 25 years ago when China was just opening up to welcome tourists. Shopping then was mainly confined to their Friendship Stores or roadside stores. Currency exchange was with some difficulties, besides not having much  shopping choices to attract the tourists’ dollars. Food was good, especially the hotel breakfast and all our travel was covered by air-conditioned coaches for sight-seeing.

China has since come a long way with its remarkable range of hotels. Today’s structures are mind-boggling & futuristic. Such is the presentation of the 27-storey “big glowing doughnut”

Sheraton Huzhou Hot Spring Resort that’s newly established near to Shanghai.

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Guoliang Village – China’s Hideaway

PC/Sunday, 22 September 2013

guoliang-village-zhengzhou

Guoliang Village, with 350 strong independent people, is situated in Wanxianshan scenic area, Henan Province. A favourite tourists‘ spot, visitors say there are very beautiful mind boggling views of stunning canyon, landscapes, cliffs & mountain ranges.

For access there is a daring road carved into the side of a cliff, though difficult to reach, it’s well worth the trip.

Hidden away in the Taihang Mountains it’s covered by an amazing transportation system.

guoliang-village-zhengzhou4
guoliang-village-zhengzhou5

guoliang-village-zhengzhou9Guoliang Village was a tiny Chinese village high in the Taihang Mountains in Henan Province. Nobody heard about it. The only way to reach it was via steps cut on the side of a very steep cliff on which their village was built. They called the stairway their “Sky Ladder.” Perhaps the difficult access and a defensible position kept the little village safe when trouble was brewing in the area. But in 1972, the village elders including Shen Mingxin were determined to build a road. They wanted their village connected to the outside world and for people to be able to reach it other than by laboriously climbing stairs. So in 1972, with hand tools, 13 strong villagers started carving a road down the side of the canyon road. It is a single lane road that is about 12 or 13 feet across and about 15 or 16 feet high. Many tourists see their handiwork as a colossal feat. The road was finished in 5 years, and the result is that the village is famed as a tourist attraction.

The road is amazing considering that it is tunnels and levelled cliff face. The road stretches about a mile. It reminds me of a tunnel an ant colony might dig. They carved arches for their tunnel and levelled sections of cliff face so that tourist buses are able to go up. It isn’t wide enough to be a two lane road, but cars can pass each other slowly. The road was opened in 1977.

Along with seeing the road, tourists like visiting the welcoming little village people. They like hiking up the road because the canyon and the mountaintop area have spectacular scenery. The village itself is unusual because the villagers built it of stone. The walls, chairs, tables and even the bowls and some eating utensils were made of stone. The village probably has an interesting history of survival in a harsh land. The canyon below the village is very narrow and deep. There are coloured rock layers, and you can better see the colours of the layers in the tunnel and along the road cut. There is also a beautiful waterfall.

It is said that to pay for the tools to carve the road, the villagers of Guoliang Village 郭亮村 sacrificed a lot and even sold their animals and other necessities of life. What they probably didn’t realise was that the government would later think that this was a prime tourist attraction in central China. When the borders were opened for foreign travel in the last decade, foreigners started to find it and post pictures about it. Even a few years ago, it was a difficult place for foreigners to find and reach, but now the village is getting famous. Hotels have opened in the village, and bridges and walkways have been built for the tourists so that they can walk around in the area. Foreigners say that the hiking and scenery is excellent and there are lots of stairs to climb around on.

In the summer of 2011, there was a dispute between the villagers and officials about access and payment. Access to the village was restricted to foreigners, but some tourists still got in. So if you are planning a trip there, check the internet for the latest news.

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Getting there is still not easy. Here is an address to show people: 河南新乡市辉县万仙山景区.

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The Village of Guoliang is about 120 kilometres or 75 miles north of the city of Zhengzhou in the Wanxianshan Scenic Area. If you want to go there by train, the nearest train station is at Xinxiang at (新乡) that is about 50 miles southeast of the Wanxianshan Scenic Area. From there, you can take buses to the town of Huixian 辉县. Get off at the Huxian Bus Station, and then take another bus to the Wanxianshan Scenic Area. This leg costs about 6 RMB or 1 USD and takes 30 minutes. From there, there are buses that cost 11 RMB that go the the scenic area. This leg takes about two hours though it is only about 40 miles away because the buses make many stops. The bus lets you off at the scenic area at a place where you can hire another ride or hike the 4 kilometres to Guoliangcun or 2.5 kilometres to another village called Nanping. There is an 80 RMB entrance fee if the park is open. The walk through Guoliang Tunnel is breathtaking, but keep an eye out for motorists. The road is steep in some places.

 

 

Why China Rises and the US Falls

PC/Friday, 20 September 2013

images

The Chinese have always been widely known to be most assiduous in their economic pursuit. From having the great capacity for work, surviving in the most adverse economic conditions, suffering & enduring, they are also very employable. They contributed much to the building of railway in America. Totally reliable & trust worthy, that’s who & what they are.

Most importantly you’ve got to remember they boast of an unbroken civilisation of some 5000 years unequal by any! – P Chong

Herein  we clearly see the dichotomy that distinguishes one from the other . . .

Source of Slides/Pictures Unknown:

Chinese women army greater in number than the whole of US population!

The American are required to be asleep in order to realise their American Dream.

America needs to really wake up and stop whining. It needs to fix the social political system and economic system. The only way to compete with China over the long term is to have its “EDUCATION” right.

Education is the secret to China’s long-term sustainable rise. Recently, America was shocked to see how much the American students are falling behind on science, mathematics and writing, while Chinese students excel in those three on international tests. Many in the US realize the challenge but also quickly point out that those Chinese students were from the developed Shanghai area and they have more money and better facilities. Wrong!!! students in Shanghai or Beijing are known to be lousy students who perform a lot worse than those from poorer areas. They have much lower college entrance thresholds, and normally they cannot enter the top Chinese universities.

This shows how wrong the US is: it looks at education only by money . . . while it is the will and love of knowledge that make a people worship education. (See BBC Chinese School, or http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=C8cyb0. ..)

Education can make a turnaround within 10-20 years in a person’s life, and within 20-50 years in a nation’s lot.

America was in shock when it learned that China produced a stealth fighter, the fastest super-computer, longest highway system, longest high-speed rail system . . . all happened within a number of years since its reform started in 1979 when China was a lot worse than Ethiopia or Ecuador.

Education aside, let’s take a look at the other factors: 

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 A VERY YOUNG worker in China . . .

only 5 years old undertaking a man’s job!                                   

Click Below/Copy & Paste:

http://static.video.qq.com/TPout.swf?auto=1&vid=r010673xh67

Five-Year-Old Chinese Boy Flies A Plane Solo

1378559784206_1378559784206_r A five-year old Chinese boy has launched himself into the record books as the world’s youngest pilot by flying a plane unassisted.

He said, “I quite like it, because flying a plane is very exciting and it’s much more exciting to sit in the front instead of the back. Also, the level of danger in the front is higher than in the back. The person in the front has to drive, and it’s really fun.”Forget toy model airplanes, the five-year-old Chinese boy He Yide is already piloting real planes in the sky. Nicknamed Duoduo, he completed a 35-minute solo flight by ultralight aircraft at the Beijing Wildlife Park, earning himself a world record as the youngest pilot ever.

Duoduo is no stranger to extreme feats. His father, He Liesheng, who calls himself “Eagle dad”, has already let Duoduo compete alone in a sailing race and sometimes makes him run around almost naked in the snow. The elder He says these harsh training exercises are part of his “Eagle education”

He said, “Eagle Education” builds the qualities of bravery, morality, emotion and strength. Bravery is an important part of “Eagle Education. Today’s flight realizes this principle. After living here for 20 days, Duoduo has really become much braver.”

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A five-year old Chinese boy has launched himself into the record books as the world’s youngest pilot by flying a plane unassisted.

The video posted online has prompted huge debate over He’s style of parenting, even though he said the boy had had “no problems” from the “intense education method”. Still, experts caution that this approach isn’t suitable for every child.

5-year-old Chinese boy flies a plane solo CCTV News – CNTV English

http://english.cntv.cn/program/china24/20130907/103527.shtml

Zong Chunshan, Director of Beijing Youth League & Psych. Counseling Center, said, “At different ages, a child’s development and physical characteristics have their own laws of maturity and what they can withstand. So people should respect these laws of development, and they should not say ’I think (the child) should be like this and therefore I will educate him or her accordingly’. Doing this is very likely to harm the child in the name of love.”

Eagle Dad insists this kind of training is good for his son. And they’re already planning their next adventure to China’s least-populated area, the Qinghai-Tibet Plateau.

Related stories

The rising costs of child raising2013-08-27

Child traffickers face maximum sentence of death2013-08-11

Child star performs in Beijing2013-06-01

Cute South Korean child monks2013-05-16

Editor:James |Source: CCTV.com

China Scraps Floor on Banks’ Lending Rates

Move may be just the first step as Beijing wrestles with its weakest economic expansion in many years

Analysts wonder whether deposit rate liberalization has been put off for now.

BLOOMBERGJULY 20, 2013

China Scraps Lending Limits Photograph by: Getty Images Files , Bloomberg

China has eliminated the lower limit on lending rates offered by the nation’s financial institutions as economic growth slows and authorities expand the role of markets in the world’s second-biggest economy.

The change, effective Friday, eliminates a limit set at 30 per cent below the current 6 per cent benchmark, according to a People’s Bank of China statement. The central bank left a deposit-rate cap unchanged.

While the move temporarily jolted world stocks higher, the PBOC acknowledged that it was a limited step and said that freeing up deposit rates would be more important. The shift came as central bankers and finance ministers from Group of 20 nations gathered in Moscow, and after a cash squeeze in money markets curbed a record expansion in China‘s credit.

“While deposit-rate liberalization is still possible, the fact that a decision was made to just remove the lending-rate floor suggests that more aggressive liberalization proposals were defeated, or at least delayed,”

said Ken Peng, senior economist at BNP Paribas SA in Beijing. “This decision shows that some reform is being done, but may actually reduce the chances for deposit-rate liberalization in the near term.”

Raising the deposit-rate ceiling would improve household incomes and reduce the attractiveness of non-traditional wealth management products while threatening banks’ profit margins, Peng said.

The move will lower companies’ funding costs and boost financial institutions’ pricing capabilities, the PBOC said. In March, only 11 per cent of loans were priced below the lending benchmark, according to central bank data.

The nation’s economy grew 7.5 per cent in the second quarter from a year earlier and is at risk of the weakest expansion in 23 years. The announcement builds on pledges by Premier Li Keqiang to expand an overhaul of interest rates, tagged by the World Bank and the International Monetary Fund as a priority in financial reform.

© Copyright (c) The Province

Truth Behind the Great Firewall of China

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 Michael Anti (aka Zhao Jing), a key figure in China’s new journalism, explores the growing power of the Chinese internet & the truth behind  the great firewall of China.l

He has been blogging from China for 12 years. Despite the control the central government has over the Internet — “All the servers are in Beijing” — he says that hundreds of millions of microbloggers are in fact creating the first national public sphere in the country’s history, and shifting the balance of power in unexpected ways.

One morning in 2011, Michael Anti woke up to find himself a nonperson: His Facebook profile, with 1,000+ contacts, had been suspended. Anti, whose given name is Zhao Jing, ran up against Facebook’s real-name policy – but he points out that for Chinese bloggers and information activists, the pseudonym is an important protection for the free exchange of information.

Facebook itself is blocked in China (along with Twitter and YouTube), but the country boasts some 500 million netizens – including 200 million microbloggers on sites like Sina Weibo, a freewheeling though monitored platform for text and photo updates that offers, perhaps for the first time, a space for public debate in China. It’s not a western-style space, but for China it is revolutionary. It’s the first national public sphere. Microblogs’ role became clear in the wake of the high-speed train crash in Wenzhou in 2011, when Weibo became a locus of activism and complaint – and a backchannel that refuted official reports and has continued to play a key role in more recent events.

Recently a TED video featuring Michael Anti on China’s Censorship seems to be making the rounds.  I think Anti does bring some unique insights to the English speaking audience about China that we don’t generally see in Western media; hence his video below:

Imagine there are 500 million internet users in China!

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Chinese Equivalent Internet Sites

Google       Baidu

Twitter       Weibo 

FaceBook    Renren

             YouTube       YouKu or TuDou 

The Most Mysterious School in China . . . shaping China’s future

National emblem of the People's Republic of China
National emblem of the People’s Republic of China (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

 

 

Xi Jinping

Here is an interesting article you may care to read. It describes part of the extensive and arduous educational process necessary for those in China who show promise as national leaders.

Apart from the fact that China’s national leaders are a special selected elite bunch of highly-educated, knowledgable, trained & put to the mills, experienced & tested, their role as national leaders leaves you with little doubt of their suitability, competency, legitimacy & meritocracy.

A school that shapes China’s future

By Li Jing and Peng Yining (China Daily) – 2011-06-01

Group interviews were on the agenda last June when 70 journalists from home and abroad visited the Party School of the Central Committee of the Communist Party of China.This might be the most mysterious school in China. The gates are closely guarded by the People’s Armed Police, 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

Headmasters of this place, a training ground for future leaders of the Communist Party of China (CPC), are always one of the country’s vice-presidents, if not the president. Former headmasters include Mao Zedong, Liu Shaoqi and Hu Jintao.

It is also a haven where possible cures for China’s economic and social ills are discussed and debated, and where policy trends are set. By influencing decision-makers, experts say, the Central Party School is partly navigating the country’s development.

Situated next to the Summer Palace, an 18th century imperial retreat in suburban Beijing’s northwest, the Party School of the Central Committee of the Communist Party of China – the Central Party School – is like no other university or college in the country.

Without the usual hustle and bustle, the 100-hectare leafy campus is extremely quiet, and almost empty. There is no bicycle congestion. Instead, the roads outside school buildings are lined with black Audis, the German brand selected as the government’s official sedans.

The serenity and security are prepared for those who study there – provincial governors and ministers, young and middle-aged officials, their guest speakers and sometimes the country’s top leaders.

The speeches that top leaders deliver at the Central Party School, and their articles printed in the school’s publications, often signal new strategies and policies that will be adopted by the central government.

Seeking new solutions

The most recent example is the notion of innovative social governance – keeping a handle on social issues while fulfilling people’s fundamental interests – brought about amid growing public concerns over unbalanced and unsustainable development.

In February, at the opening ceremony of a seminar for provincial and ministerial officials at the school, President Hu Jintao called for new methods of social management in a bid to “ensure a harmonious and stable society full of vitality”, Xinhua News Agency reported. Hu acknowledged that the country is “still in a stage where many conflicts are likely to arise”, despite remarkable social and economic development.

In his speech, Hu highlighted the necessities to “improve the structure of social management”, which must be achieved through the Party committee’s leadership, government’s responsibilities, support from non-governmental organizations and public participation.

In March, at the annual sessions of the National People’s Congress and the Chinese People’s Political Consultative Conference National Committee, a proposal high on the agenda called for establishing a sound social management system with Chinese characteristics during the 12th Five-Year Plan (2011-2015) period.

More detailed plans have since been drafted, including one for a comprehensive and dynamic national population database. Zhou Yongkang, secretary of the Central Political and Legislative Affairs Committee of the Communist Party of China, made that proposal in an article published in Qiushi, the CPC central committee’s biweekly journal.

Steering the policymaking in China is a tradition for the Central Party School, according to Wang Haiguang, a professor in the school’s history department.

Broad range of programs

The Central Party School, founded in 1933 in Jiangxi province, has trained 61,024 officials under different types of programs.

Provincial and ministerial-level officials usually undergo two months of training on political science, public management, economy and history. Young and middle-aged officials spend six months to a year at the school, usually followed by a promotion.

Since 1981, the school also has offered postgraduate and doctoral programs for about 500 non-official students. They focus on philosophy, economics, laws, politics and the history of the Communist Party of China.

“The Central Party School has played an important role in several critical stages in China’s history,” Wang said. “In some way, it is partly navigating the country’s development through influencing decision-makers.”

Following the end of the “cultural revolution” (1966-1976), Hu Yaobang, then headmaster of the Central Party School, led a fervent discussion about the criterion for “testing truth” among the officials receiving training at the school.

At the time, whatever Mao said was regarded as the truth or principle to follow. The discussion led by Hu was whether this rule should continue.

The discussion was held in a stubborn social environment still dominated by the notion of “two whatevers” – “we will resolutely uphold whatever policy and decisions Chairman Mao made, and unswervingly follow whatever instructions Chairman Mao gave.”

It led to the publication in May 1978 of a commentary piece, titled “Practice Is the Sole Criterion for Testing Truth,” in Guangming Daily. The concept put forward in the article won approval by the majority of Party members, but it also touched off a fierce national debate.

The debate was believed to be a great movement to free the minds of Chinese people from personality cults, and also a solid ideological foundation for the economic reforms and opening-up that would follow.

Freedom of speech

Although outsiders expect the Central Party School to be conservative, the school tolerates free internal discussions, even without limits. Li Tao, a 27-year-old postgraduate student at the school, was surprised by the freedom of speech in class.

“Teachers told us there were no taboos in their teaching, and officials can debate on almost any sensitive issues in the country,” Li said. “This is actually a place of mind emancipation and free speech.”

“Officials might be discreet in talking to strangers or in public, but their internal discussion in class is unbounded,” said Wu Zhongmin, a professor at the Central Party School who focuses on social justice research. “Sometimes their opinions can be really audacious and revolutionary.

“The Central Party School is a place where officials and researchers debate about the future of the country and the Party,” Wu said. “They have to face the problems and find ways to solve them. Speaking empty words or simply flattering makes no sense here.”

Discussions are closely linked to the most sizzling social problems, such as illegal land grabs, inequality between rural and urban areas, and corruption. To give trainees a better understanding of these problems, the Central Party School sometimes invites outspoken scholars to give lectures.

One speaker, in 2009, was Yu Jianrong, head of the Rural Development Institute of the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences and a prominent advocate for farmers’ rights. He addressed the rapid urbanization that has resulted in farmland being taken up for construction projects and the use of the petition system for redress.

Some farmers, believing they had not been adequately compensated for their land, appealed to the petition system. But going over local officials’ heads by petitioning can lead to ill treatment by officials whose job performance is downgraded when they do not handle problems well locally.

Wang Changjiang, director of the school’s Party Building Teaching and Research Department, said officials are aware that mishandling such social problems could create greater chaos.

“China has so many problems now,” Wang said. “As the country’s governors, officials have no reason to ignore those problems. They must bear in mind that only reform and changes to the Party can help it stay in power.”

Social and economic changes also have led to changes in officials’ mindset, he said. In the early 1990s, higher ranked officials were unaware of some of the problems at the grassroots.

Wang said he met strong opposition from trainees when he tried to talk about democratic reform in 1996. But in recent years, more high-ranking Party leaders began to realize the need to carry out government reform following economic progress.

“The Central Party School might be the most ideal place for such discussions,” he said, “because you can’t find anywhere else where hundreds of high-ranking officials gather for months.”

International exchanges

Since the mid-1990s, the Central Party School has welcomed another group of guest speakers – top leaders from foreign countries – in a bid to give Chinese officials a wider horizon and better understanding of different cultures, values and political systems.

Most recently, Herman Van Rompuy, president of the European Council, gave a speech titled “Europe and China in an Interdependent World” on May 17 during his visit to Beijing. Besides talking about the economic crisis, he also addressed human rights, climate change and other concerns common to both Europe and China.

Xu Wei contributed to this report.

Shuanglang – Little Known Secret Paradise

Shuanglang nestling on Erhai

Shuanglang, a Bai Minority town,

across from Dali in Yunnan, nestling on the shore of Erhai Lake, is one of China‘s most laid-back destination.

With poetic scenery and tranquil guesthouses, the small fishing village of Shuanglang has become a favourite escape from urban living for those know.

An idyllic hideaway 

Many of you may know of the tourist-thronging Dali & Lijiang in Southwest China’s Yunnan Province. But few of you may have heard of Shuanglang Village. This is an idyllic place & China’s hidden little treasure which few have come to know.

For over a thousand years, the local Bai Minority people here have made their living fishing in the lake. But the past 10 years have brought in a change to life. The small tranquil village is now popular with visitors looking to unwind and enjoy a slower tempo.

Boating pleasure

Old alleys and traditional architecture made for pleasant wanders. And it’s easy to take a boat out on the lake or just kick back and do very little.

Surrounded by mountains on three sides, Shuanglang village hugs the scenic Erhai lake. The weather here always seems perfect, making it a great retreat anytime of the year. It is also home to some of the most romantic boutique guesthouses in China.

Filming taking place . . .

Baxun, Shuanglang village chief & owner of the first such guesthouses, said,”A guesthouse is not a hotel. It’s much more personal. The decoration varies in different guesthouses. Each and every one of them represents the owner’s unique style.” There are more than 120 guesthouses now, offering much choice for a comfortable stay. Most face the lake and have decks providing breath-taking views.

A tourist said,” I like staying here. It feels like home.” And many really do make this their other home. In fact, many of the guesthouses are opened by the once “outsiders”.

Xiaoyun and her husband, “We wanted to find somewhere peaceful to live,” came to Shuanglang in 2009 from Beijing, and fell in love with the quiet village. The couple later quit their jobs to set up their own guesthouse here. “We had traveled to many places around the country. The air, clouds, people . . . we just love everything here.”

As elsewhere in China, change is coming to Shuanglang. Several new guesthouses have been built in anticipation of future visitors. With the influx of bar, restaurants & people, the mood of the village will no doubt change. Hopefully it will be a few years before this hidden gem becomes a mini-Lijiang.

English: Erhai - Lake of Dali (Yunnan) - North...
English: Erhai – Lake  (Yunnan) – Northern part (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

For the present, tranquillity & peace exist. Before long these may not persist!

Beijing, Paris, London & New York

The Cities above are so placed in an alphabetical order

and not by any means on an arguably competitive basis

 

In hindsight, having travelled to Beijing, Paris, London & New York, the four major metropolitan cities in the world, I just can’t begin to take stock as to which city I like best. I guess each one has its own unique attractions to offer and likely too because of differing love & interests, each individual will have have a different opinion.

I asked my wife for her choice of the appealing attractions of each place and she indicated the following:

Beijing

Forbidden City

The magnificent Forbidden City is the largest & the best-preserved imperial palace complex in the world. It has 9,999 rooms during the flourishing period, just one room short of the number that ancient Chinese belief represents ‘Divine Perfection.’ It is surrounded by a moat six metres deep & a ten-feet high wall. For five centuries, this palace functioned as the administrative centre of the country.

The Great Wall of China

The Great Wall of China is one of the ‘Eight Wonders of the World’ and is enlisted in the World Heritage Directory. This immense wall was built to keep out invaders as well as to retain the inhabitants. It spans five provinces from Shanhaiguan Pass in the east to Jiayuguan Pass in the west, looking like a gigantic dragon across deserts, grasslands and mountains. In the downtown area of Beijing, it is possible to climb Badaling Great Wall.

Tiananmen Square

The solemn and respectful Tiananmen Square is the largest central city square in the world, which serves not only Beijing’s symbol but also the whole of China. This immense courtyard is surrounded by a variety of significant edifices such as the Tiananmen Tower, Great Hall of the People, Mao Zedong Memorial Hall, Monument to the People’s Heroes and National Museum of China.

Paris

Paris

Eiffel Tower

Probably the best known landmark in Europe, the Eiffel Tower is the symbol of Paris and one of the city’s must-see attractions. You can climb up the stairs or take the elevator after waiting in the (long) queue.

Louvre Museum

One of the not-to-miss sights in Paris is the Louvre Museum, possibly the most famous museum in the world with a fabulous collection. It is housed in the Louvre Palace, once home to France’s Royal Family.

Notre Dame Cathedral

The Notre Dame de Paris is one of the first Gothic Cathedrals ever built.

Construction started in 1163 and lasted for almost two decades. From the lookout at the north tower you have a great view over the city.

London

Big Ben

The Clock Tower of the Palace of Westminster, known as the Big Ben, is one of London’s most famous landmarks. At the time the tower was built in 1858 its clock was the largest in the world.

Tower Bridge

London’s Tower Bridge is one of the most recognizable bridges in the world. Despite being disliked by many when it was built in 1894 the bridge soon became one of the London’s most famous landmarks.

Piccadilly Square

Piccadilly Circus is a busy square in the heart of London. It is famous for the fountain that was installed here at the end of the 19th century and for the neon advertising that turned the square into a miniature version of Times Square or Beijing’s Tiananmen Square.

New York

Empire State Building

Tired of staring up at New York City skyscrapers? Check out the view of New York City from atop the Empire State Building. The Empire State Building is a classic New York City attraction, and offers visitors wonderful views of New York City and the surrounding area.

Statue of Liberty   The Statue of Liberty was a gift to the United States in honor of the friendship established during the French Revolution. The Statue of Liberty has become an American symbol of freedom and welcome to the immigrants who come to the USA looking for a better life. While the interior of the Statue of Liberty is closed for improvements, you can still visit Liberty Island and nearby Ellis Island.

Grand Central Terminal   Renovations since its opening in 1913 have turned Grand Central into more than just a hub for transportation — there are shops, dining and more available to visitors. Grand Central is both an essential transit hub and a beautiful example of Beaux-Arts architecture.