Isn’t this a cheery fellow? One of the spirit goats at the Green Goat Temple in Chengdu.
This is one of the pagodas in the Green Goat temple.
This slab was spotted at the Green Goat temple. The detail is amazing.
The pottery found in the gardens in the Green Goat temple is highly detailed.
This bush was spotted at the Green Goat temple in Chengdu.
Lunch in Chengdu- Century eggs. Google them if you want to find out how they are made!
Note: the pictures below show pandas that are living at the sanctuary that Louise visited. They are being prepared for their introduction into a protected wilderness habitat. The pandas are kept separate from each other as they can cause damage to both the other pandas and their keepers with their powerul claws and teeth, which is why when they are fed in the indoor part of their individual enclosures, they appear behind bars. They have easy access to their outside environments and are clearly loved and well-cared for by the staff at the sanctuary.
Louise feeding and recording a new black and white furry friend!
This young Giant Panda was having fun being fed and posing for the camera.
This is an adult Giant Panda. He is the only one at the centre that loves to have a swim! He has a pool in his back yard. After a hot day in Sichuan province, there is nothing better than a quick dip to cool down!
This happy chappy decided to show off his bamboo stripping skills!
This is one of the buildings that form the bridge over the Dujangyan aqueduct. It is quite different in style from other buildings we saw during our travels in China.
This is a close up of the detail of one of the pillars in Tianfu Square…
This seems to be a watermill of some kind. I stumbled across it whilst being lost in Chengdu…
This furry feline greeted people as they walked down the road towards Wenshu Monastery.
This rather unusually poised guardian was protecting the entrance to the Wenshu Monastery.
These are some stones I saw whilst exploring the gardens of Wenshu Monastery.
This is another image taken of the Wenshu Monastery gardens.
Within the Wenshu Monastery there were numerous ponds with fish, turtles and frogs. Here is an example of a carving beside one of these ponds…
A pond full of turtles at the Wenshu Monastery.
I heard something that sounded a little like cows mooing… turned out it was this little guy…
Chengdu is famed for its tea. I spent a very happy two hours with a cup of bamboo tea.
The sleeper cabin on the train from Xi’an to Chengdu
Starting the day’s planting in the rice paddy
Halfway through planting this paddy
Tending the rice crops
Rice paddies by the side of the railroad
The paddies lie between the railroad and the motorway
While farming takes place on this side of the river, an industrial zone looms in the distance
An impressive crane zips past the train window
Breakfast on board the train (there were more than 5 cherries – before I ate them all)
The whole staff of the hotpot restaurant tried to teach us the mandarin for hotpot and its ingredients – sadly we were hopeless at learning!
My final glimpse of Chengdu – a revolving panda statue at the airport
The bell in Xi’an’s Bell Tower – which was rung at dawn to start the day
The flower beds around the Bell Tower were in full bloom
We passed a stall with calligraphers hard at work creating amazing works of art
Green Tea is used as a flavouring in cakes here as well.
Near the Big Goose Pagoda there are lots of statues. This shows a female folk hero with a distinctive fighting style
The monk Xuanzang, hero of ‘Journey to the West’, who retrieved Buddhist scriptures from India with the aid of the Monkey King
The seven storey tall Big Goose Pagoda south of Xi’an city centre
The view north to Xi’an city centre from the top of Big Goose Pagoda
The Treasure God at the BIg Goose Pagoda has a thing for gold
Every few feet, another small detail catches your eye
An elephant stool in the grounds of the Big Goose temple complex
Stalls on the way in to the Terracotta Warriors Museum
A fountain topped by rearing horses greets you as you walk along the path to the Museum
The hall containing pit 1 is just massive
Terracotta Warriors stand in ranks in the trenches of the pit
These horeses would have been rigged with harnesses to a chariot, but the leather and wood have long since decayed away
We passed a power station while on the bus, just outside Xi’an
Welcome to a huge shopping mall in Xi’an
As with Western malls, you could almost be anywhere
A wedding shop in downtown Xi’an
The Xi’an city walls are massive – with the contrast to the high rise development across the city
The City Guard are still active around here…
Travel in style around the walls on a bicycle made for two
The banks have some fearsome guardians. This lion looks a bit rabid…
While this guardian looks a bit happier to me.
Chess is a serious pursuit on the streets of Xi’an
The Great Mosque is very different to those in the UK or Istanbul
Kebabs are on sale on the streets behind the mosque
A bit further along, a mallet pounds a confection made of nuts
This dog has got to have been trained to pose for the camera
The bell tower is lit up at night in competition with the nearby high street shops
The run of sleeper cabins on the train to Xi’an
The buffet car on the train – breakfast was available, but we settled on cups of tea
A slightly dilapidated building flies past the train window
Xi’an – a city where the old meets the new comfortably
Starting off along the Great Wall
There are a lot of steps involved
The views are amazing, even through the mist
Hard at work on the Great Wall
Looking up at a watchtower
The Great Wall is a very popular place to visit
A detail caught my eye as we passed a modern wall beside the Great Wall
Burning Incense at the Yonghe Gong Tibetan Lama Temple
A prayer wheel – by spinning it, you are taken to be reciting a mantra or prayer over and over again
Walking through the Temple Complex offers some amazing sights
It’s worth looking up too
We finally managed to find Simon’s Teahouse (see Memories)
A welcome ‘cup’ of tea
The queue for our sleeper train to Xi’an
All things have to move slowly and quietly in the Diplomatic Quarter
The impressive main building at the Central Conservatory of Music
Louise lecturing at the Conservatory, interpretation by Maggie
Andy lecturing at the Conservaory, with Maggie interpreting again
Bihe and Maggie, both of whom have been extremely helpful
The portico leading up to the main building. Sadly, we didn’t see it at night, it’s covered in lightbulbs
The beauty of music is definitely appreciated at the Conservatory
The sun sets as we wait for the flag lowering ceremony
On of the first sights and sounds we encountered on our way to the Temple of Heaven were musicians – often competing witn each other
Everyone in the park seems extremely fit
The archways are typically Chinese in design
The Hall of Prayer for Good Harvests – is just immense. It’s made of wood, without any nails
The Altar Stone at the Temple of Heaven – said to mark the very middle of the Middle Kingdom
On our way in to the Forbidden City at Tian’anmen
One of the massive Halls you pass through as you move further in to the City
The turtles seem friendly, if a little large
An understated corner in the Forbidden City
It wasn’t until I looked closely at this photograph that I noticed the dragon seems to be holding some flowers in his claw – maybe that’s why he looks so happy
An internal canal snakes away into the distance
A larger canal runs along the outside of the Forbidden City
A parting glimpse of the Forbidden City
The Summer Palace is constantly watched over by faithful guardians
The best way to travel over the lake at the Summer Palace
The buildings at the Summer Palace are stunning
Although a bit bashed, the door plate is still opulent
Baby dogs don’t argue with their mothers…
For some reason, this drainage hole at the Summer Palace made me smile
Even soldiers need a break on a long hot day
It took a bit of climbing, but the views from the top of one of the temples included this
We crossed over this canal just as we were leaving the Summer Palace, and wished we had more time to explore it fully
The Rabbit God! Seen near the Confucius Temple
Commercial Beijing – a large bookshop in Wanfujing Dajie
A bustling Night Market just off Wanfujing Dajie
He’s got a lovely bunch of coconuts
The crowds were already gathered in Tian’anmen Square when we arrived
A soldier strides towards his duty post, guarding the flag
Mao Zedong watches over most of the Universities in Beijing
There are various symbols representing science and technology scattered around the USTB campus
Fitness and health are very important here – every student has to take at least one class each year in a sport
But the walls are a bit unreliable, it seems…
Arrival at Beijing
We found a bridge at the end of our street while wandering around
Lanterns along the Hutong
Bikes and Bottles
The eaves of a house just down the lane from our hotel
Louise makes a new friend
T’ai Chi in the air – getting rid of the kinks, ready for landing.
A spire caught my eye while walking across campus
- The way in to the University (and out again)
A swan floating by serenely on the canal
The swan notices the camera and decides to spruce itself up
Louise checks that her microphone can pick up traffic noise
We disturb John Young hard at work composing in the studio
Andy and Louise are ready to go