Well, despite economic issues that are sending rumbles through the world in the first month of 2016, it is probably the best time ever to visit the amazing country of China. With well over a billion souls, history to rival and dwarf most others, natural beauty and more, China is simply a country with it all. If you’ve been thinking about China but not felt ready to take the plunge, then perhaps 2016 is your year! Here are seven reasons to visit this year.
Okay, what I really mean here is budget. China is not a bargain destination by any means, however it still hasn’t reached the prices you see in Europe or dare I say my own country Australia which frankly is ridiculously expensive at times. You can still eat pretty cheaply, and if you find the right places you’ll get a decent room for not too much. I spent less than $20 on a single room in both Xian and Shanghai when I was there, in hostels yes, but my own room, with bathroom.
As the economics of the world change, a bargain room will become much harder to find. Prices will go up across the board. The sooner you go, the better chance you have of snaring a bargain!
There are so many airlines you do need to be careful to get one with a decent reputation (or save and try your luck with the likes of Spring Airlines!). However, the great distances of China are now easily traversed in good time with plenty of air options.
Hell yeah! China is blessed with a fair bit of track all across its land. Prices are not cheap but not outrageously expensive either. I took an overnight train from Guilin to Shanghai, and Shenzen to Guilin in China, and both were comfortable and enjoyable experiences. This was really the only time I got to chat and meet locals as well, which I personally found harder than in most places.
Add to this one journey I wish I took, the Qinghai – Tibet Railway, the freaking highest railway in the world. It goes over 5000 metres, and each passenger has their own oxygen supply. Now come on, that’s pretty special!
- The Great Wall
I have been to China twice. The first time was in 1986 as an 11 year old. Here I visited Beijing, and the Great Wall of China. The only man-made object to be seen from the moon, right? Of course it’s absolutely covered in tourists today, but it’s still one of the world’s most important achievements.
- Army of the Terracotta Warriors
Not far from the amazing Xi’an, an amazing city in its own right with an incredible city wall which has to be one of the biggest in existence worldwide. You can take a local bus as I did once you’ve worked out how to navigate the bus route, where you will be taken to this amazing attraction spread over various sites under big rooves. Be warned – you will not be the only person there! The crowds are pretty overwhelming at times but the amazing thousands of terracotta soldiers is what you are all there to see. There are over 8000 warriors and the tomb is over 2000 years old.
- Yangshuo and the Li River
Just heavenly! This stunning region of Southern China is brilliant. It’s green, with interestingly shaped hills and rocks. You can take a boat, a raft, walk, cycle… there are endless options. But words can’t adequately describe this location. Pictures are better, but not as good as being there in person!
- The Forbidden City
In Beijing, this imposing, breathtaking complex still remains in my memory from 1986. Despite the three listed above, I think this is without a doubt China’s most amazing tourist attraction. If I was to go back to Beijing, it would be first on my list so that I could get some decent photos of it, and you know, be there!
So What do you think? Does China inspire you to visit? Please comment and as always, May the Journey Never End!!