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Tai Shan

Tai Shan mountain has been revered as a mystical place for several thousand years, and the earliest summit temples were erected in 354BC. It remains the holiest of all Taoist mountains in China and attracts millions of visitors a year.   However this chill December day it feels like I’ve got the place to myself. […]

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Holing up in Tai’an

The weather isn’t as dire as predicted, but it’s still C-O-L-D. Looking out the double-glazed window of my room it seems like it should be okay as it’s sunny and dry, but it’s tough to walk around outside for more than twenty minutes. There is no thermometer around to tell me exactly what the temperature […]

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Change of plan?

I’m sitting in a proper internet cafe for the first time this trip, and am taking advantage of the opportunity to check the weather forecast. So far conditions have been still and clear (except for smog) every day, generally fine though it is naturally getting colder the further north I travel. Perfect really, given the […]

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Confucius say

Qufu in Shandong province is revered in Chinese culture as the home of Confucius. The ancient scribe laid the foundations for so much in Chinese society, and in Qufu you will find the Confucius Temple, Confucius Mansions and Confucius Forest where he and nearly all his descendants are buried. Naturally enough it is a tourist […]

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Food notes #1

Street food is fine and extremely cheap (it won’t cost more than Y7 or A$1.50 for a really big feed), but it’s difficult to get a balanced diet from it. I’ve slowly been working my way up to cheap restaurant level, which is harder than it sounds because menus are always in mandarin characters and […]

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Where am I?

Bengbu isn’t as nice as Shanghai. While plotting my route to Qingdao, where Welm lives, I wanted to include a place that was definitely not a tourist town. Somewhere I could get a taste of “real China”, whatever that means. I guess I wanted to experience a place that is completely untainted by tourism or […]

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