August 02, 2007

Zhujiajiao China

Zhu Jia Jiao China

Zhujiajiao China. On my last full day in China I really wanted to travel to a Chinese water village. I’d seen them in films like Hero and Mission Impossible and I just thought they looked really pretty and they really are in person. Zhujiajiao itself is around a one hour’s drive from Shanghai and was formed around 1700 years ago and is based around a large canal system. When we visited it was easily the hottest day I have experienced in my life. We spoke to our driver who told us the temperate was close to 50C and after a short time (about 5 minutes) of walking around and sweating you could literally have thrown a bucket of water over my head and I wouldn’t have gotten any wetter.

To give you an idea of how hot it is, Liv is from Taiwan which is a tropical country. The winters can reach as low as 10C but their summers can reach up to 40C and it’s 100% humidity. I tried to hug Liv a couple times in Zhujiajiao and each time she said, in a much nicer way than this, “get off, it’s too hot!”.

But I was really pleased we visited and although I’m not sure I would go back again it was another travel destination type ticked off my bucket list.

Zhu Jia Jiao Bell

Street in Zhu Jia Jiao

Postbox in Zhu Jia Jiao

Beautifully crafted postbox in Zhu Jia Jiao. One of the main highlights in Zhu Jia Jia is the old post office which has relics from old China.

Water Zhu Jia Jiao

Wishing Tree in Zhu Jia Jiao

Wishing tree. The ribbons represent people’s wishes.

Lamp in Zhu Jia Jiao, China

Bird in a cage Zhu Jia Jiao

Zhu Jia Jiao China Boats

Boats Moared in Zhu Jia Jiao

Water House Zhu Jia Jiao

Boats in Zhu Jia Jiao

Building in Zhu Jia Jiao

Doorknobs Zhu Jia Jiao

Door handles in Zhu Jia Jiao. Very ornate and very Chinese

Zhu Jia Jiao Homes

Zhu Jia Jiao China

Homes in Zhu Jia Jiao

Passageway in Zhu Jia Jiao

Water taxi in Zhu Jiao Jiao

Tourist boats / water taxi’s, call them what you like. I’d imagine in the heat of July this could be a pretty nice job

Water taxi in Zhu Jia Jiao

Taxi in Zhu Jia Jiao

Peephole Wall Zhu Jia Jiao

Zhu Jia Jiao China

School in Zhu Jia Jiao

School in Zhu Jia Jiao.

Zhu Jia Jiao square

Washing up Zhu Jia Jiao

Daily life in Zhu Jia Jiao. Zhu Jia Jiao was insanely hot when we went there so I guess all people can do is hang around the water and try to stay cool

Zhu Jia Jiao, China

Map Zhu Jia Jiao

Postcards in Zhu Jia Jiao, China

Old postcards from the Qing Dynasty area. So that’s it for China, I spent in total a whole month there, travelled to Shanghai, Suzhou, Jiuzhaigou, Chengdu and Xi’an. Chengdu was a bit boring, Suzhou a bit offensive, Jiuzhaigou was really beautiful and relaxing. Xi’an was a lot of fun and Shanghai is just awesome. We caught a train to Suzhou and back while we caught a bus to Chengdu. Everywhere else we flew and we stayed in a mixture of 4 and 5 star hotels. In total I spent around £3000 on every including the flights to China.

Would I go back again? Yes, absolutely, and I would like even more time next time. I wouldn’t go back to either Chengdu or Suzhou and next time I’d really like to go into the mountains and to see more of the Chinese countryside. If Jiuzhaigou is any indication of what’s out there then the countryside must be amazing. I do however recommend staying in decent hotels though. As of 2007 a 5 star hotel in Chengdu is around £50/60 a night which is really great. Final note, stay away from the guided tours and be prepared to haggle prices!

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