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Our China Adventure - Part 2

CHINA | Sunday, 16 July 2017 | Views [104]

We survived our 25 hour train ride. Thank God for iPads and smart phones filled with books, games, music and podcasts. We got off the train in Chengdu and met with our favorite guide yet, Shao. First came a Mandarin lesson. I wasn't so great but Danny seemed to impress the group. That night we walked along the river of a city filled with 17 million people. It was absolutely stunning (and clean) but we had to call it an early night as we were getting up early the next morning to see PANDAS!

The Chengdu Panda Research Center is the largest in the world. It is home to Giant Pandas and Red Pandas including a number of babies. In this zoo, we were able to see lazy adult pandas, active teenagers, cute babies and two newborns. While the panda enclosures reminded me of the D.C. Zoo, it was the ability to get so close to the babies and the sheer numbers of Pandas that made this zoo special. The red pandas can actually walk amongst the tourists though it was a hot day and most were lazing in the trees. It was a special treat.

After the pandas we visited the new Chengdu museum, a giant statue of Chairman Mao and the People's Park. Just like in Korea, I feel I have much to learn about this part of the world. We finished the day with Hot Pot, a dish where you cook your own meat in boiling sauce. It's known for being spicy and our table went for medium heat. I stuck mostly to the plain broth but Danny enjoyed the heat! I think this was our favorite meal in China. In fact, we loved all the food in Chengdu. Our last day took us to the Wenshu Monastery where marveled at the buddhas and received an excellent lesson from our guide. We finished our amazing time in Chengdu at the markets of Jinli street eating food and exploring the little shops. We loved Chengdu! We could have stayed longer but it was time to board our 15 hour train to Xi'an.

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