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Beijing 5th and 6th December 2007

Beijing Travel Blog

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Entrance to the Summer Palace

After the cold of yesterday we decided to make a visit to an indoor market a priority to buy ourselves some warm clothes. The markets had been on our to do list anyway. We headed for Yashow market which was full of knock off labels which the stall holders insist are the genuine article. Strange that they don't appear on any retailer outlet lists. We set off on our search and rather than it being a case of gloves off it was gloves on as they were our first item. Stallholder "499 each but I do for you 300", Us "You are very funny we'll give you 50 for the pair", Stallholder "You joking be serious", Us "Do I look like I'm joking?", Stallholder "Final price 200 each", Us "We'll look around then", Stallholder "No! No! 120", Us "Final price 50 the pair", Stallholder "100", Us "70 for two pairs final offer", Stall holder "No! You're killing me", Us "Okay we'll see you later then" at which point we walk away to cries of "OK 80 for two you give me money".

Adam among the rock maze at the Summer Palace
Deal two pairs of thinsulate lined Spyder rip off ski gloves for 5 GBP. Sweet and so it continued. Thermal socks, winter hats, thermal undies and still we spent less than 20 pounds. You've got to love a haggle.

Newly warm we went on another fruitless search, this time for a Starbucks which when we found it didn't have soy milk. Sad I know but a good coffee can make all the difference.

Next it was to the Summer Palace and a long tube and bus ride out there which was interesting. The Palace covers a truly vast area. At one point we climbed up a sort of rockery playground and at the top the palace lake and grounds stretched into the distance as far as the eye can see. We walked through a covered corridor which runs along the front of the lake until we came to a full scale marble steam paddler boat which the empress dowager Cixi had built to hold parties on, the height of decadence.

The Marble Boat at the Summer Palace
The palace was superb but we ran out of time to fully explore it. If you plan to do it you can pretty much allow a full day and bring a picnic. Especially in the summer I'm sure it would be even more beautiful.

The next day we were moving on in the afternoon but thought we'd have one last attempt at finding a veggie restaurant not demolished to make way for more new shopping malls. We headed to the Lama temple where we finally had success in finding the Xu Xiang Zhai restaurant (See Review) they did a full on buffet for 58 Yuan which we took full advantage of. Massively full we set off for Beijing West Railway station which was ridiculously busy. We used the internet there (Don't bother though its so     s    l    o   w!!!

We were booked onto the soft sleeper which has its own waiting room which was cool as the others looked a nightmare.  Xi'an here we come

lisbog says:
Simply amazing! Adam, get all the haggling practice in that you can. You'll really need finely honed skills when you get to the Toronto merchants.
Cheers!
Posted on: Dec 13, 2007
Virginiagoodings says:
Darlings:
So happy to hear you are warm again!!! Love the photo of the two of you on the Great Wall!!! I am looking out my office window to snow on the hills, having just shovelled the driveway!

Love you loads and am loving your blogs...I could learn a thing or two with your bartering!
Mum/Virginia
xxoo
Posted on: Dec 10, 2007
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Entrance to the Summer Palace
Entrance to the Summer Palace
Adam among the rock maze at the Su…
Adam among the rock maze at the S…
The Marble Boat at the Summer Pala…
The Marble Boat at the Summer Pal…
Beijing
photo by: Deats