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!

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