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26/08/2013

Pristine Winter Sightseeing at Huangshan Mountain

As HuangshanMountain (the Yellow Mountain) is a year-round attraction, winter visitors are often stunned by its beauty. The mountain has been said to be at the peak of its beauty during winter, and for that reason many people will suggest curious visitors should travel there during the cold months. What's so special about Huangshan in winter? Lower cost, fewer people and magnificent winter scenery! When you have
Yantze River tour, Yellow Mountain is a must-see after disembarktion.

Cheaper

Every year between Dec 1 and Feb 28, the price of admission tickets drops from the season's high of 230 yuan (unit for China money) to 150 yuan. The cost of a cable car ticket drops from 80 yuan to 65 yuan. Even local hotels and restaurants cut their prices by an average of 30 percent. Cash-strapped backpackers can save some money by visiting during winter.

No crowds

It seems that people have an aversion to winter trips thinking there is nothing to see at that time of the year. Thanks to that, photographers and backpackers can have Huangshan all to themselves in the winter. You start to feel the absence of the typical summer crowds at the gate. And the plank roads, twisted and narrow, further disperse the visitors. Along the way, you can feel free to slow down or stop anytime to enjoy the landscape or take a rest. In winter, swarms of people are nowhere to be found even at Shixing Peak a favorite spot among tourists tp watch the sunrise.

Winter spectacles

Huangshan (top destination for top China tours) can still be beautiful without too many colors. The yellow rocks, naked branches and shriveled plants present a soft beauty, while the robust green pines reaching out into the azure sky show the tough vitality of life. Clusters of red beans are waiting to surprise you anytime on the way. In winter, the "four major marvels" of Huangshan uniquely shaped pines, oddly-shaped rocks, seas of clouds and hot springs are as enjoyable as ever. And you may even be lucky enough to experience "the fifth marvel": the spectacular snow.

Tips

1. Temperature changes dramatically during the day, so bring clothes that can be taken on and off easily.

2. Travel agencies usually arrange one-day compact tours. But those who want to savor the charm of Huangshan (making contribution to China tourism) are recommended to stay on the mountain over night. Hotels such as the four-star Shilin Hotel are easily accessible.

3. Up on the mountain, food becomes less diverse and more expensive. You better bring your own food with you.

09:55 Publié dans Voyage | Lien permanent | Commentaires (0)

23/08/2013

Travelogue: ChengFu Courtyard

The unparalleled culinary craftsmanship, unique cultural heritage and perfected service at ChengFu make it the premier Chinese dining experience in Beijing for my China tour deals.

“Are you able to find the front door?” Our host RenFeng has, no doubt, guided many guests to the unremarkable doorway off NanChang Jie. Once inside, however, we finally see the quiet elegance of ChengFu Courtyard, whose meticulous chef and quality ingredients have been favored by every generation of communist elite. We are guided through the small inner courtyard past private rooms housing restaurant relics, such as the bamboo box used to serve the Great Helmsman himself, to our second floor escape. Like the three other private rooms, ours includes a small lounging area to relax post-meal or between any of the eight courses.

chinatour.com

When we arrive, our table is already lavished with individual servings of, house made morsels—spiced peppers, pickled radish, fried smoked fish. Our host explains that all of the food at ChengFu is organic and prepared to the highest standards. This commitment to excellence can even be seen in one of Deng XiaoPing’s favorites, the bread and house-made butter (truly the best in Beijing, the must-see for top 10 China tours). Our first course was a delicately cooked seafood sampling, including octopus, sweet scallops and prawns paired with a tangy ginger sauce—briny and succulent, the dish was perfectly executed. The main ingredient for our next course, soup, was nearly unrecognizable as it arrived at the table. We were presented with what seemed to be a giant puffball, floating ethereally in a bowl of clear broth. Our host explained that this furry wonder was actually silky tofu that was hand-cut over 100 times to create a flurry cloud of goodness. It was quite unique. The next course was in homage to the chef’s time in Germany—house-made cheese-stuffed, deep-friend prawn with shrimp har-gau dumpling disguised as little bunnies. The rich creaminess of the cheese married perfectly with the springy crunchiness of the fried prawn,.. The sweet shrimp and its delicate rice skin rivaled the finest dim sum in the city.

With the promise of improved beauty and vitality, I tried the next course, beef cheek skin. The intricate sauce paired well with the thinly pounded, rice noodle ravioli. As a blue-blooded American, I admit that this was not my favorite dish, in concept, but the gelatinous skin, which takes over 24 hours to prepare, was succulent and flavorful. Next, I enjoyed the most famous dish in ChengFu’s repertoire, Mao’s hongshao rou. As explained by our waitress, the chef at Chengfu combined Mao’s three favorite things—rice and hongshao rou presented in a baked pumpkin shell—to present to the Great Helmsman himself. It is easy to see why this dish is so famous--the sweetness of the pumpkin combined with the soft, rich meat made for an incredible mouth sensation and the rice added additional depth, as it soaked up the juices and spicy peppers (served on the side). Although it was nearly impossible to top their signature dish, ChengFu did an admirable job with their mushroom stuffed, phyllo codfish, served with a sesame rice fish cake. The presentation, complimented with Chinese greens and sliced oranges, was a feast for the eyes, while the perfectly cooked fish was a dish for the senses. The last course was also good, but perhaps not up to the remarkable standards of the rest of the meal—tofu noodles and greens set in a savory sauce. Admittedly, it may have been that I was so full from the other courses that I was incapable of enjoying the dish to its full potential for my popular China tour package.

As the main meal came to an end, we sampled another ChengFu exclusive—5 yr Danxi Huang Jiu. Reminiscent of fine German ice wine, Danxi is typically reserved exclusively for Zhongnanhai, but due to ChengFu’s uniquely singular relationship with the leadership compound, they (and thus, we) enjoyed certain privileges. Accompanying our aperitif was our final dessert course, ying and yang style chilled pumpkin and yogurt. The golden-hued, puréed pumpkin was subtly sweet and accented with a white mixture of almond pudding that melted into blueberry tinged yogurt. The light creaminess of the course was the perfect end to an absolutely stunning meal. The unparalleled culinary craftsmanship, unique cultural heritage and perfected service at ChengFu make it the premier dining experience in Beijing. For more others, you can check out travel China guide.

10:16 Publié dans Voyage | Lien permanent | Commentaires (0)

22/08/2013

Dalian and its main attractions

Dalian, located at the southern tip of the Liaodong Peninsula, is an important port and industrial and tourist city for affordable China tours. Dalian has a long coastline. Dalian covers an area of 4,826 square miles with a population of 5,370,000.

Dalian has a pleasant climate with clearly demarcated seasons. Cool summers and warm winters make the city an ideal holiday resort. Dalian abounds with natural resources. It is an important base of fruit and water production in China. Dalian is also known as the “home of track and field” and the famous “soccer city.” The port has many factories, which produce handicrafts such as glassware and shell mosaics. The flourishing coastal city of Dalian is the major port for this northeastern province and is a magnet for foreign investors. Every year, Dalian attracts many regular international events and activities such as the Chinese Scholar Tree, International Fashion Festival, Export Commodity Fair, and International Marathon Competition.

Lushunkou Scenic Spot

The Lushunkou Scenic Spot, at the southernmost tip of the Liaodong Peninsula, is the military strategic town of the Japanese-Russian War and one of China’s popular seaside tourist resorts. Lushun area has rich tourist resources such as beautiful and changing seaside scenery, the remains of modern wars and the mysterious and colorful Snake Island. The Lushun Museum, one of the oldest in China, was built in 1917. It should not be missed for your top 10 China tours.

Dalian Beach

Dalian Beach is a tourist attraction and summer resort of national caliber. Stretching 25 miles, the beach has many scenic spots, such as Wooden-Club Island, Fujiazhuang, Mt. Baiyun, Xinghai Park and the Black-Rock Reefs.

Jinshitan National Summer Resort

Situated along the banks of the Yellow Sea, the resort commands a breathtaking landscape that includes mountains covered with lush vegetation, reefs in five various shapes, a seaside with soft clean sand, and rippling blue water. The resort has a 4.6-mile natural bathing beach and an 18-hole golf course.

Other Attractions

Bingyu Scenic Area, Xinghai Park, Mt. Laotie, Snake Island and the murals in the Han Tombs

The above-mentioned attractions make contribution to local China tourism.

10:05 Publié dans Voyage | Lien permanent | Commentaires (0)