Summer Palace

Trip Start Nov 20, 2010
Trip End Dec 01, 2011

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Where I stayed
Sunrise Hostel

Flag of China  , Beijing,
Wednesday, May 18, 2011

 So we were planning on going to the Olympic Square on the 17th but instead wound up staying in the hostel all day, literally from 10am til 4pm. We did manage to book several train tickets in the UK and a hostel for London, which was our goal and why we stayed in so it was actually a successful day. We got away for about an hour however to buy a new microphone for our computer to use on skype. Back at the hostel we once more sat around in the bar and chatted with Steve and Mike and this time also met a girl from the Netherlands (whose name we never really got simply because it's not one we recognize or could pronounce, haha).

 On the 18th our plan was to go to the summer palace but didn't manage to get there until noon cause we're getting tired and lazy, lol. Our trip on the metro didn't take very long though and we were at the summer palace before long.

 When you buy your tickets at the gates you have either the option of buying an 'all access pass' to all the exhibits or a cheaper one that doesn't give you access to any of the exhibits leaving you to buy individual ones inside. If I (James)  could do it again I would buy the cheaper ticket and only pay for the extra one to 'the Temple of Buddha Insence' because the others were not all that great, but each to their own I guess. 

 We walked along the lake and over beautiful old bridges but we didn't even cover half of the park area; the entire place is massive.  Jackie was very excited about being in a park area as she is still very much missing having a lawn and grass to sit on!

We saw pictures and explanations of how the temple was made and changes made to it over time and explanations of how it was destroyed and rebuilt twice. There was also portraits of the empress that was the main resident of the palace; it was cool to put a face to someone who called this place home.

 We also walked down the 'worlds longest corridor' as well but Jackie didn't think it was the longest because when we were changing planes in Toronto there was a damn long corridor between terminals that we used a super fast floor escalator to get through the corridor with that seemed to go on forever, but I'm not a Guiness judge, so who knows.

 Once we got back to the hostel we met with our friends Steve and the girl from the netherlands to go out for peking duck as none of us had tried it yet and it's a big thing in China. After finally finding the restaurant that our hostel suggested we just pointed to the menu and hoped the waiter got our order right. They did and we had an amazing meal of duck! After that we went to the night food market by our hostel to gets some pictures of some of the strange foods they have. Steve and I tried the scorpian and said it wasn't bad, cz you mostly taste the oil they deep-fry it in, and Jackie tried a bit of snake skin which she said was tough and not real good.

Once again back at the hostel we sat around the bar visiting, this time we indulged in a few more drinks! Haha. We had been playing cards, enjoying our drinks and meeting even more people in the hostel before for quite some time when a guy decided we should all go out to a pub/bar he knew in Beijing. A group of us decided to head out on our way. When we got to the pub someone looked at their watch and realized it was already 2am!...we had thought it was more like 11pm, oops. We sat at the pub for a while more enjoying another drink and then finally everyone was getting too tired to last any longer and we all decided to return (at 4:30am!!). When we arrived at the hostel the sun was coming up....aaarrgh.

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