Where do I begin? This was the longest vacation I have ever taken, as well as the most exotic. The plane rides were numerous and thankfully uneventful. Let’s start with the trip home – it took 32 hours from when we left the hotel until I arrived home. Too much time on a plane – especially when you don’t sleep.
The Forbidden City, the Great Wall, the Three Gorges on the Yangtze River and the Li River were all they were advertised to be – GREAT. The hotels were exceptional and the food was much better than I expected. The only real negative was the weather…either too hot, too misty or rainy. I think that we saw two blue skies in 21 days. Fortunately, one of those was at the Great Wall.
I was ready for lots of bicycles but, they are no longer riding bicycles in China. Now many people have cars or motor scooters. We even saw a Bentley. And I couldn’t believe how many KFCs and McDonald there were.
We used Vantage Deluxe World Travel and were very happy with them. Our tour manager, Jonathan, was outstanding. The other people on the tour were great as well. All in all, a great vacation…in spite of the weather. One thing that was disappointing was the fact that the meals were not diabetic friendly. Meals included bottled water, local beer and sometimes Coca Cola…never Diet Coke (or Coke Light as they call it.) When it was available, I had to buy diet Coke (sometimes Pepsi) and paid anywhere from fifty cents to three dollars for a can.
My favorite moment in the vacation was in Hong Kong. We went to Outback for burgers (I love Chinese food but after 20 days, 3 meals a day a burger was awfully inviting) and they offered to refill my diet Coke. Free Refills – now that’s living! See more photos at: http://www.adoramapix.com/jerrydeutsch/book/china-12×9-copy
Denton and Sharon, travel mates of yours and of ours on previous occasions, forwarded your works to me … knew in an instant that the photos were “professional”. The photos are beautiful! You should market your works to Vantage as a choice they might like to have in thanking their more frequent Vantage travelers. Your entire China photo book (not that I need the group photo at the end) covers nearly all the same bases as we had on our wonderful China trip with Vantage just before the river valley was flooded. Enjoyed seeing that modernizations have taken place since then. Apparently the panda portion of the zoo is still in need of attention – it was probably the only major disappointment in our trip. We too looked for anything American or Northern European to eat after 20+ days even though we adjusted to our new diet while there. Our wonderful accomodations and food at the hotels used by Vantage were always appreciated at the beginning and end of each day … external to the hotels, we only found a McDonald’s in the basement of a building – not the same but appreciated the attempt to give an optional eating choice. Another find of ours when traveling was the book Wild Swans, a perfect read when traveling and getting to know China. Your photos and that book should be offered on all China tours. It would be the perfect package.
Thank you. Great photos are much easier when there is something great to photograph. The colors, sites and even the people made great subjects.