Wednesday, June 29, 2011


We met the tour guide from Guangzhou the next morning, "Little Lee" who will be taking us to Shaoguan for our 3D/2N tour to Danxiashan.

We were taken to the Bullet Train Station in Panyu. The bullet train just started this year linking Guanzhou to Wubei. Next year the bullet train will link Guangzhou with Beijing. The train station is huge- just like a airport and sparkling new and clean. The surrouding areas are not fully developed yet- more apartments etc. There is strict condition that each person has to show identity card/passport to get a ticket each - this is to prevent touts. We also have to go through strict security checks as well.

The bullet train station.

The journey to Danxiashan takes around hald hour by bullet train. The travelling speed is 340 kph maximun yet inside we did not feel any movement- its just like travelling in the normal express train.

Arrived at Shaoguan and met the local tour guide "Little Chang". In China, you have to use the service of the local district guide.

We were taken to a Tourist Designated Restaurant for lunch. In China, the tourist are treated different from the locals. We normally had a room for meals whereas the locals eat in the main lounge. I guess the menu for the tourist is different as well - for hygience and health reasons, i think.

As usual there are 10 dishes and 1 soup. The notable and outstanding ones is:-
Spareribs baked in Lotus Leaves.

After lunch, our first destination is the ZHUJI VILLAGE. This is old street with ancient houses along the way. These houses are now used mostly as "Chee Tong"- the ancestral worship houses for the different surnames in China eg. Chan, Lee, Wong, Ho, Chang etc. There is a huge signboard at the entrance where you locate the family roots and the house no. This place is popular during the Ching Ming Festival where the Chinese would come by to pay respect to the ancestral home. Sounds of fire crackers would be heard and that means someone is praying for blessing from the ancestors.
The Signboard with 159 names

At the entrance of Zhuji Village.

The ancient Zhuiji Village

Rolling long cigarettes-in this area those with farmlands will have to grow certain acres of tobacco and these are normally sold to the government. Each of this "long cigarette cost only RMB1.
This is an main attraction in the village. The statute of Gwei Fah. Story is that she was forced to flee from the palace and as a result was rescued by a noble from the village and became his wife. The wicked officer informed the Emperor that the village is rebelling against the Emperor and cause the Emperor to send the army to destroy the whole village. In order to save the whole village, the Gwei Fah committed suicide and thus the village was spared. The people then built this statute to honour her.

There are beautiful marble carving around the village too. This one is about the Great Wall.

This one is about Buddha and the story of Journey to the West.

After that, we check into our hotel and were free to roam on our own. We went shopping, yes there are small shops here and I found a bottle of "cologne water" -not the 4711 brand but "Lotus Flower" brand. You can hardly find them in KL nowadays. However, this was confiscated by the security when we return to Guangzhou at the Bullet train station. Told you that they are strict on security.

There was a market nearby as well and business was still brisk in the evening.

This lady is sorting out the leaves from the Kangkong - see the long stem which is being sold only.

These are green brinjals- haven't seen them in KL though.

Shaoguan is famous for melon seeds -this is Sunflower seeds- bigger than the ones we get over here.

TCM- herbal roots, leave etc and one type of root which is only available here is the "Ng Chee" root- the ones on the right. They smell wonderful and when boiled with chicken and sweet dates, they taste like Chicken and Coconut soup.

Saw a vendor selling fresh garlic- see the purplish skin - bought some home but yet to use and taste them.

We had our dinner at another Tourist Designated Restaurant and again its 10 dishes and 1 soup

Homemade Taufoo -simply lightly brown and top with soya sauce and spring onions. Wonderful.

Another Cantonese style of plain cooking- wintermelon braised with taufoo pok.

The green brinjals fried with purple brinjals in dark soya sauce. yummy.

Our desserts- lychees- so sweet and luscious - we just can't stopped eating!

After heavy meal, we took a walk to the community park. Everyone seems to enjoying themselves - there were groups practising their ballroom dancing, line dancing and classic dance as well. This is their classic simple, happy and healthy lifestyle or shall we say relaxation and de-stress- yes even in Guangzhou- at night you can see the people dancing away.

Even the little girl is seriously involved in dancing!

Tuesday, June 28, 2011


We had our breakfast at the 30th floor of the hotel. The Chinese buffet basically is the same everywhere in China. There are bread, hard boiled eggs, hot milk, plain congee served with its usual condiments of preserved vegetables, boiled sweet potatoes and sticky rice and cheong fun etc. The Chinese seems to require these carbo to sustain them for the day's work.

After breakfast we made our way to the Pedestrain Street of Shangxia Jui Lu. This is another popular shopping centre. We were early otherwise the place will be teeming with people- "People Mountain People sea" is how you would describe the place. The goods sold here are cheaper (anyway there seems to be a sale everywhere) but the quality in Beijing Road is better. Here you can get good "AA" bags. There are bronze sculptures depicting old China and culture scattered along the street.

The three sisters.

The western influence.

The famous Man in Chicken selling olives.

Here is the person in flesh. He would stand upright and play a tune with his pipe whenever he had done a sale.

The shop selling the "Kam Wah Ham". I did not get the whole leg but only a small piece for RMB68. cheap. There were people lining up to buy their sausages (again on sale).

After shopping, our cousins took us to a popular Tea House for Dim Sum. The place is big and spacious and the environment is tranquil and peaceful.

The center courtyard of the restaurant. This restaurant also offer wedding dinners.

Our cousins booked a room for us. Here in China, to book a room , you will have to spend at least RMB1,000.00 above. This is their sales charge. So our cousin keep ordering and in the end, we had more than 10 dishes.

We were first served with the soup - its GREEN/HAIRY MARROW, BLACK EYE BEANS AND PORK RIBS. Its refreshing after a hot day in the sun.

The most memorable dishes are:

Fried Milk - I think its consist of egg whites as well. Its fluffy and there are pieces of fresh prawns as well.

This is Roasted Duck with Yam. The yam pieces are steamed and served alongside with the Roasted Duck and not as a yam paste on top of the duck as it is usually served in Malaysia.

The Buddha Bowl is purely vegetarian- bits of celery, water chestnut, carrot and gingko. You can see gingko trees aling the roads of city.

This is Milk Tarts and Egg Tarts. It is creamy and flaky crust is a contrast of texture.

The flavour of the milk is not over powering.

The much craved for - DOUBLE LAYER MILK CUSTARD. This is either srved cold or hot. This is the hot version and they use water buffalo milk for this. Again the milk flavour is not overpowering. We also the the Har Gow- prawn dumpling and they are huge- and you can see the whole prawns inside!.

After such a heavy lunch, we do not feel like walking/shopping besides the ladies wanted to do their hair for the wedding dinner. So we went back to the hotel. However we were a bit let down by the hair styling. Anyway, we did Malaysia proud as we were probably the best dressed guests of the night. The guests all seems to be casually dressed, but they can really drink! The brandy and whisky are served on the rocks most of the time for them!

The restaurant is in a shopping mall and the decor is really RED! There is no stage for the groom and the bride to give toast and besides this does not seem to be the practice over in China. They just go around the tables to toast and there is no shouts of "Yam Seng". The strangest practice here is that the bride does go around the tables to serve "bride's tea" in disposal tea cups and angpow is given onto the tray!

Beautiful embrodiery background.

Some of the dishes for the wedding:-

Pig trotters Braised with Abalone

The Buddha Bowl again- this is with fresh scallops

Big Prawns with Longevity Mee

Lastly we were served with fresh fruits. The funny thing is they served the fruits together with the seeds - and we thought these were flies!LOL

It was an enjoyable dinner and May God Bless the happy couple everlasting till old.

Monday, June 27, 2011


We arrived at Guangzhou Bai Yun Airport around 3.00 pm. due to the turbulence in the air and our cousins had been waiting for us since noon. We checked in at the Lido Hotel, Beijing Road. After refreshing ourselves, we hit the road. Yes, Beijing Road is where the action or rather shopping is. It is the newer part of Guangzhou city and the whole area has been turned into a pedestrian walk. Shops are on both sides of the street- and being Summer time, the sale seems to be on and they calling out cheap bargains. It started to get more crowded as the night draw on as it was Friday night.
This water feature is located at the beginning of Beijing Road. Can see the crowds behind.

With all the shopping crowds around, it was indeed seems strange to find an ancient ruin smack in the centre of the street.

This site was found in th middle of the road when they were execavating Beijing Road. This is the passage to the city of old Guangzhou. You can see the layers of the stones laid down by each dynasty.
That's what I called the old mixes with the new.

After shopping, its time for dinner with our relatives at one of restaurant near the shopping mall in Beijing Road.

Chinese loves to eat and the meal would have around at least 10 dishes at a time.

Cantonese cuisine is plain, non spicy and freshly sourced and prepared ingredients.

Of course, soups play an important role in Cantonese meals especially soups that has been boiled for at least 2 hours. (in Cantonese, its called "Loh Four Tong").

This are the ingredients used for the CHINESE PEAR, GREEN OLIVES AND DRAGON MEAT soup. Dragon meat being pork ribs- the lumbar part of the spine.

The soup is light and sweet and astonishing clear - yummy.

Blanched prawns- served with a dipping sauce of soya sauce and julienned ginger. As I had said, Cantonese food is plain and non spicy. You can taste the freshness in the prawns.

Again, this Kwai Fah Fish is just plain steamed with spring onions and soya sauce. Very fresh and no muddy taste.

This is Deep Fried Sweet Potato - crunchy outside and soft and sweet inside.

We had a mix of spicy food too. This is Beef cooked Sichuan Style - or what they called "water-style" Its spicy and numbing - too much Sichuan pepper.

I am really fascinate with these long bean sprouts. Nothing like our Ipoh Taugeh.

Left to right: Loh Che (the daugther of the 2nd Aunty deceased), Serena( my sister in law), my 3rd Aunty (Ku Che), Vicky and Jennifer (sisters) KK and Y. Chin (brothers standing).

Left to right: (Standing) my cousin Lai Ying (who had arranged our tours and hotels and meals too); Jennifer, KK, Yoke and husband Seng, Bill (Vicky's husband), Y. Chin and wife Mei Lian.

sitting: Loh che, Serena, Ku Che and Vicky.

We were informed that the costs of living has gone up in Guangzhou so you can see that the restaurant is not full. But yet we had such a scrumptious meal.

Thursday, June 23, 2011


I am glad to be home after 7 hectic days of sightseeing, climbing, shopping and of course, eating from Guangzhou.

Haa.. Guangzhou- shopping paradise, eating heaven and spectacular sights and sites both historical and of latest technology.

There is always something you can look, see and do in Guangzhou.

Guangzhou- is where our roots are. My grandfather and grandmother came from China to Malaysia to escape the Communist Revolution with their 2 sons. The daughters were left behind as they were already married by then. Sad to say, their husbands were either killed during that time or maybe thereafter in those turbulent times, leaving the widows to fend for themselves and their children.

I can recall my father sending money back to them every now and then and especially for the Chinese New Year. And my grandmother would get my help to sew those patchwork quilt to send to them. I was unable to comprehend why as my father has 11 children to feed. But now I feel glad and honoured to hear them praise my father for his financial help to them otherwise, they would have suffered more back then. I am also glad and thankful for my father's teaching to us that we are not to neglect our family members or anyone in need, to give what we are able to and as a family to help each other and stand by each other together. His teaching and his actions will always be in our mind. Our ancestral home is still standing in the countryside but this trip we did not go back- too many memories.

Our last link to this is my Ku Cheh - my aunty. She is the youngest daughter and she is 82 years old. she has suffered a stroke recently but is recovering. She is a strong will lady, the stuff that most Chinese women are made of. She has suffered much in her younger days. Now she can enjoy the fruits of her labour surrounded with kind and caring daughters and grandchildren. They are all so warm and hospitable towards us.

To my "family" in China - a big Thank you very much for the th very enjoyable trip.

Will update more of the trip later.