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Off to Xi'an

Xi'an Travel Blog

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Chinese Traffic Dance - Crossing a street in Xi'an just south of Yongning Gate - the traffic from my left is essentially entering a large roundabout that travels around and through the Yongning Gate.

5/16

Didn't have to get up too early to catch the 10:29 train (K166) from Emei town back through Chengdu and then on to Xi'an.  This was the longest train journey of the internal China portion of the trip, nearly 20 hours from departure to arrival in Xi'an.  It was an altogether mostly uneventful affair turning north and back east again.

5/17

Arrived super early in the morning (between 6:00 and 6:30 AM) via the train at Xi'an Railway Station.  Grabbed taxis to take us the short distance (but more than we wanted to walk) to the hotel.  We were all hoping that the hotel would have our rooms ready for us, and thankfully they did.

Food sellers in the Muslim Quarter of Xi'an
  So we grabbed our keys and headed up to our rooms for a short rest before heading out.  We agreed to regroup at 9:30 AM to head out and explore the city.  Time for a shower and a quick nap, as I did not get the best sleep on the train last night.

Meeting up we walked down to the markets near the south City Wall.  Lots of little stands selling little knick-knacks.  I looked around a bit more intently now as with about a month to go on my journey it was time to start looking for souvenirs for the family.  Didn't buy anything just yet but tried to establish what people might like.  From these markets headed up to the Muslim Quarter to see the market there and get a delicious brunch at some of the food stalls in the quarter.

From brunch a few of headed up to Lianhu Park where we watched many families take some small boats out on a pond while we quietly sat at a tea house and sipped some tea in the relaxing early afternoon.

Bell Tower - Xi'an
  Finally decided that we had to do something so we chose to head outside the city walls and go visit the Small Wild Goose Pagoda.  Since the day was absolutely delightful we figured we would walk through the center of town, outside the Yongning Gate and down to the Pagoda.  The Small Wild Goose Pagoda was first built in the early 700's, lost the top two levels in a 1556 earthquake and now stands 43 meters (142 feet) in height.  We paid the nominal fee to climb to the top getting squeezed as the 13 levels became increasingly tighter for someone standing 6'1".  From the top some interesting views out over the city of Xi'an, again another Chinese city growing at an incredible rate.

We considered making our way to the Big Wild Goose Pagoda another few kilometers away, but decided to stay in the same location and go to the Xi'an Museum adjacent to the Small Wild Goose Pagoda (especially since the ticket to get into the Small Wild Goose Pagoda included the Museum Admission).

Small Wild Goose Pagoda
  The museum offers some historical insight on the building of the Small and Big Wild Goose Pagodas and a wealth of historical relics from Chang'an (the ancient name of Xi'an) and other interesting information on this city that was the starting point of the Silk Route.  All in all a wonderful way to spend the afternoon.

Met up with some of the others back at the hotel to head out for dinner, then went down to an entertainment district not far from the south city walls.  Lots of small bars here and night spots to have a drink, listen to some live music, and just chill.  Didn't stay out too late since it had been a long day on the go.  One final amusement for the night was still to be had at the hotel.  As I was just about to drift off to sleep, the phone rang.  I stumbled over to answer it and the voice on the other end says, "Massage, yes or no".   But pronounced with a soft "g".  I begged off and headed for the blissful opportunity of sleep.

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Chinese Traffic Dance - Crossing …
Food sellers in the Muslim Quarter…
Food sellers in the Muslim Quarte…
Bell Tower - Xian
Bell Tower - Xi'an
Small Wild Goose Pagoda
Small Wild Goose Pagoda
Shopping Mall - Xian
Shopping Mall - Xi'an
Bell Tower - Xian
Bell Tower - Xi'an
First thought these were some type…
First thought these were some typ…
Food sellers in the Muslim Quarter…
Food sellers in the Muslim Quarte…
Small boats on a pond in Lianhu Pa…
Small boats on a pond in Lianhu P…
Small Wild Goose Pagoda
Small Wild Goose Pagoda
Simone doesnt need to crouch in t…
Simone doesn't need to crouch in …
Crouching in one of the levels of …
Crouching in one of the levels of…
Xian follows in the trends of all…
Xi'an follows in the trends of al…
Just a funny fountain in Xian
Just a funny fountain in Xi'an
Just a funny fountain in Xian
Just a funny fountain in Xi'an
Just a funny fountain in Xian
Just a funny fountain in Xi'an
Old and New China
Old and New China
Xi'an Hotels & Accommodations review
This was a mighty inexpensive hotel (around $30 US for a double) for being in the center of Xi'an - literally one block south of the Bell Tower in cen… read entire review
Xi'an
photo by: Deats