The thing about Beijing that struck me the most was how
gritty it all was. Gritty to the point that you could taste it when you walked
outside. There’s a constant layer of dust that settles in to your mouth with each
I don’t say this to disparage Beijing in any way. It’s a fine city, with lots of interesting sights and interesting things.
Standing on top of the hill in Jinghshan park, behind the mighty
Palace Museum, we could see the Forbidden City stretched out before us in all
its ancient magnificence. The sparkling new skyscrapers of modern Beijing were
all but lost in a grey haze. The buildings where we were, at least, were lower
than expected. The city seemed to stretch out for miles, perhaps into infinity,
before disappearing into the haze.
Continue reading “Beijing’s got grit.”
We met a tour guide in Hoi An, Vietnam who was born and raised in the nearby city of Hue. We told him we were staying there for two nights. He frowned at us.
“Most people spend four hours in Hue,” he said. “Even a full day is too long.”
This seemed to be the sentiment of most of the fellow
travelers we met in our hostel. The consensus was that Hue was fine, but really
just a pit stop on the road to the bigger and better attractions of Da Nang and
Hoi An. It might be the most underrated place I’ve ever been to.
Continue reading “Hue, Vietnam is tragically underrated.”
There is much more to Angkor than just Angkor Wat. The park is a city full of crumbling ruins, with numerous sights where tourists can wander ancient stone temples in various states of preservation. However, Angkor Wat is the biggest and best preserved, and arguably the best.
Continue reading “A few quiet hours at Angkor Wat”
So we did what the guidebooks told us to…