Travel Tips

China’s long holiday

If you plan to travel to mainland China, you’d better avoid the so called golden week in October this year. This year the week stretches from 1 October to 8 October, including the day for Moon Festival which falls on 3 October, making the week slightly longer than usual.

During the golden week, many local Chinese will travel around in the country, making hotel booking and transportation harder to arrange. The major scenic spots will also be packed with visitors. Avoid it.

Travel Tips

A bridge trap

If you go sightseeing in China, look out for traps like this. the money making bridge in sanya park

This small wood bridge is in a park called Lu Hui Tou (meaning Deer Looking Back), a major tourist spot in Sanya, Hainan Province.

On the very top of the wood bridge are Chinese characters “Zou Yun”, meaning “walking luck”. Just for a bit of fun, you may be tempted to walk through the bridge in hopes of getting some luck. You can certainly do that. But after the walk, expect that some one will come up to you to ask you for money. Not much – RMB3 for walking through that one-meter long bridge.

Near the bridge lies a small sign which says RMB3 is charged because it represents harmony of heaven, earth and people.

Travel Tips

Swine flu check on flight

If you fly in to China, this may be what you will encounter:

After a flight lands on an airport in China, two guys in white medical uniform will board the flight. The first guy will walk through the corridor and take photos of the passengers. This is followed by the second guy who holds a laser machine to check the temperature of each passenger.

Well, at least this is what has happened to me when I took a Southern China airline flight to Sanya, Hainan province, from Hong Kong just days ago.

These are the precautions taken by the Chinese authority for containing the swine flu, as you may have guessed. And I guess the first guy taking photos of passengers is for keeping a record so that in the case of one passenger later is identified to have caught swine flu, those sitting next to him or her would be able to be identified and traced down.

China As It Is Travel Tips

The world’s No.1 longevity place is in China

In the Hechi (河池) city of Guangxi province, there is an autonomous county populated by Ba Ma Yao (巴馬瑤) ethnic group. The county now boasts the highest longevity rate in the world – every 100,000 residents, 31.7 are 100 years old or older. Now, 81 people are 100 years old or older, of its current population of about 240,000. 

According to a renowned nutritionist in China, the elderly in the county live a long life because they follow a so-called “five-low, two-high” diet – low in calorie, fat, animal protein, sodium and sugar, while high in vitamin and fiber. 

Guangxi province, in southwestern China, is among the poorest provinces in China. The ethnic group of Ba Ma Yao surely does not live in luxury. Their simple and low calorie diet has helped them live a longer life, coupled with the green and beautiful environment there, the experts say.

Another reason behind the longevity, according to research, is that the Ba Ma Yao people live in red-brick houses, which release a kind of natural energy, helping to improve human’s immune and digestive system. Houses made of cement of modern days do not release such beneficial energy. 

Here’s a glimpse of the beauty of the autonomous county of Ba Ma Yao ethnic group.

Travel Tips

Taking taxi in China

In major China cities such as Guangzhou and Hangzhou, taxis are equipped with fare meters and machines to print receipts. Ask for a print receipt when you leave the taxi, which usually shows the taxi fare, the taxi number and the license number of the taxi driver.  This receipt would be useful if you suspect that you are ripped off and want to lodge a complaint.

Nowadays, because of the rise in fuel price, many cities allow for taxi fuel sub-charge ranging from RMB0.5-1.0 per journey. Say Guangzhou, which imposes on passengers a fuel sub-charge of RMB1 per taxi journey. So do not be surprised if you are asked to pay RMB1 more on top of the charge shown by the taxi meter.