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Chengdu, China

Chengdu Travel Blog

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Our room in Chengdu

We arrived around midday, we had arranged a pick up from the station, when we saw the guy who was waiting for us we ushered over to him and introduced ourselves. We had to wait at the station for a few more minutes to see if any other foreigners were getting off who whe could try and get to go to our hostel too. There was one more and he was approached both buy the guy with us and a girl from another hostel, they both explained why he should go to their hostel but the guy simply asked “Which one of you makes the best cheese burger?”. In the end he went with her because he said it would be fair as the guy had already got Lexi and I there. Although we did see him a little later at our hostel which was strange. The escort called us a cab and told the driver where to go, he informed us we would pay the cab driver then claim the money back on arrival at the hostel.

Our room in Chengdu
It would only cost around eight yuan.

We arrived paid him then got our money back from reception. We did not have enough to pay for the room so we would have to go out and get the rest from the nearest bank which was fine with them. We dumped our stuff in our room, which was quite nice, cosy and clean enough. We asked them where the nearest bank was and headed out, we also seem to get riverside hostels. We crossed over the bridge and found an ATM near buy where we got about five-hundred yuan out. We thought we would have a little look around while before we headed back, we walked further down the street and spotted a book store with a sign saying “English Section” so we stopepd in. The only book that interested me was oddly Harry Potter and the Half Blood Prince.

Comparitively to the last book shop it was ridiculously cheap at thirty-five yuan so I bought it, I had been desperate for something to read on the train journeys. I also figured I could tease Lexi with it as she refuses to read the books but loves the films.

We walked further down and found an old looking street with a temple in it, we figured we best get back pay for the room then go exploring. We headed back to pay for the room then went out again to explore the old area we had just seen.

The street was a old style buildings but they looked recently built. It was very nice to see the traditional buildings if not a little too fake. The temple however was as real as it could be. We wandered round the many streets finally finding an outside Go board but no one was playing.

We also found a cool side stall where people would make lollies out of toffee in shapes of things like dragons or butterflies.

After visiting the old area, we continued through the city in search of the central square in Chendgu, containing a large statue of Chairman Mao. After a few minutes of walking we reached him, and were greeted with a nice water fountain display to music piped through the square. It was a perfect time for Lexi’s camera to run out of battery.

The weather was really strange that day; as we walked from the old street area, this strange misty air appeared. It looked like we had walked into a dusty construction site, but the air was soft, still and considering there was no breeze, quite comfortably warm. The sky was completely white and it was difficult to tell where the sun was without looking hard.

As we neared Chairman Mao’s statue, we noticed the colour of the sky had changed from white to a dirty off-white/yellow colour which is when we realised this was just a massive amount of smog. We tried to capture it on camera, but the photos don’t do it justice.

We wandered through the streets surrounding the square and found a person selling barbequed meat skewers on the street. We stopped and had some, our first taste of real Sichuan food. It was spicy - like fire spicy, but really tasty. There was one piece of meat to one piece of pure fat, which Lexi didn’t like, but it was so nice, all barbequed and crispy. We continued walking towards a small park that was on our map, and saw the classic groups of women dancing and musicians practising.

We left the park and headed back to the hostel.

After we got back we went to our room for a little relax and to grab the laptop. There wasn’t any connection from our room so we headed down to what was known as the “Internet Garden”. The internet garden was basically a small area with some parasols and a deck lined with cushions. We sat on the comfortable deck, Lexi moving photos to the hard drive (as she couldn’t get online) while I delved into my new book. It wasn’t until the next day that we worked out that the reason the internet wasn’t working was because we had the wrong password!

As we sat there for a while, a couple of guys came and joined us, loudly talking about where they could get the best marijuana from in the area.

Drug offences lead to huge penalties in China, and it wasn’t really our cup of tea listening to them bragging about how stoned they had been. So, as we were getting a little hungry we decided to find something to eat which turned out to be quite the task.

We headed towards the main part of the city, taking many side routes looking for a friendly place to eat, but most importantly a restaurant with pictures of the food (so we could point out what we want!). Along the way a rather friendly drunk woman almost walked in to me and decided to stroke my arm, I quickened my pace for a quick escape. We still had not seen a good looking restuarant and were beginning to get quite hungry. After wandering the many streets we gave up and suddenly the Devil’s yellow M shined up on us. With our hungry bellies we gave in to temptation and ordered a McDonalds. Still satisfying though and cheap we finished our food and headed home. At the hostel we went in the internet garden for a bit before retiring to bed for a busy day the next day.

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Our room in Chengdu
Our room in Chengdu
Our room in Chengdu
Our room in Chengdu
Chengdu Hostels review
Bohemian comfort
As with many other hostels in China, Mix hostel offers a free pick-up from the train station. We were dropped off on the street and then had the probl… read entire review
Chengdu
photo by: spocklogic