This issue - China
This week we look at China, and next week we will be bringing more detailed information on this fascinating country. Some of our newer subscribers have asked about back-issues of this newsletter, and a list of previously covered countries is included this week also.
Don't forget you can easily find cheap air fares from any starting point to any destination, using the Travel Select Fare Finder. And even better if your journey happens to start from, or pass through, the UK because there are special offers for flights originating in the UK. For accommodation, you can find real bargains in good hotels if you book with Precision Reservations.
So now, on with our review of the web sites we have reviewed for this issue:
A picture speaks much louder than a thousand words. TravelChinaGuide have started a photo gallery to offer web site visitors a stronger impression of Chinese culture and scenery. The gallery, featuring places throughout China, illustrates the beauty and diversity of this ancient nation.
The site currently features the following (with number of photos in brackets):
The site is thoroughly recommended at:
Photo Gallery of China
It doesn't have photos and it doesn't tell you anything about interesting sights, but it does contain a lot of useful practical information for the tourist. The last update was in April 2002. Although intended for US citizens, most of the information is applicable or useful to travellers from other countries.
Whilst they don't speak highly of Chinese driving standards ("Travelers should note that cars and buses in the wrong lanes frequently hit pedestrians and bicyclists on sidewalks") the general tone of the information is that China is a safe place to visit as long as you stick to the rules.
The US Consular Information Sheet is at:
US Consular Information Sheet
I really like this site. As it says on the opening page "This website is an attempt in bringing the beauty and glamour of China to people all over the world. Just enjoy it!"
There is extensive coverage of the entire country and the pages are well written and well illustrated, although a few more photographs would be an improvement in my view. The text can be poetic ("In a morning mist, nearby woods with distant villages in the backdrop and small bridges with winding brooks beneath are just like elegant pictures; over on hundred and sixty meters high, the bamboo-shoot-like Dinghu peak looks imposing and majestic, thrusting right into the sky") and at times very Chinese ("This would, therefore, make Suzhou Amusement Land able to show itself among vast numbers of recreation grounds in this country and really reach the first-rate level Happy World already started breaking ground for construction in October, 1995") but it is always interesting and informative.
If you don't already know about it, the Window of the World project is well described on this site. It includes "the world wonders such as the pyramid and the Amon Temple of Karnak of Egypt; the Angkor Wat of Cambodia ; the Grand Canyon of America; L'Arc de Triomphe of Paris; the St. Peter's Cathedral of Vatican; the Taj Mahal of India; the Sydney Opera House of Australia and the Leaning Tower of Pisa, Italy, etc. All these replicas were made on a scale of 1:1, 1:5 and 1:1.5 respectively, with each exquisite beyond comparison and absolutely lifelike" plus a 108 meter tall Eiffel Tower, an 80 metre wide Niagara Falls and active Hawaii Volcanoes!
You can learn all this and much more at this fascinating site. As it says, "A bridge leading to the century beyond has been built and on this bridge called Internet one can see all the beautiful things the most populous country can boast". Indeed.
This web site is an account of my own trip to China in 1994. Since I wrote it, I'm not going to say much more about it apart from the comment that it sets out my personal impressions of a trip from London to Beijing with Uzbekistan Airways. I visited the Forbidden City, the Great Wall, the Summer Palace etc. but primarily my account is more about the feeling of China than about the sights themselves. Take a look and decide for yourself.
You can read my Trip to Beijing at:
My Trip to Beijing
Jim Chambers visited Beijing in December 1998. His account of his trip is very different from mine. It is extremely informative and contains a lot of practical information dealing with travel arrangements, prices, weather and toilets. The latter is an item you do need to be prepared for!
Take Jim's trip at:
Jim Chambers' Trip to Beijing
For useful books on travel, you will find a comprehensive listing with prices and reviews on my books page (with links to buy direct from Amazon.com) on:
Hotel accommodation in Asia is plentiful and using a reputable agent can secure you substantial discounts. Precision Reservations can usually find you a good deal and you can check their availability here:
Back issues of this newsletter are available. You can find them on:
The countries covered in other issues are:
Far East Air Fare deals from Travel Select
For flights originating anywhere in the world use this Travel Select link
And if your flight originates in the UK there are some special deals on this special UK page
Other Useful Links
|Previous Newsletter||Index||Next Newsletter|