DAY 37

Week 6

XI'AN (Shaanxi, CHN)

Saturday August 12th, 2017

TODAYS MILEAGE – 7 miles or 11 kilometres
TRIP MILEAGE – 33,964 miles or 54,660 kilometres

For the uninitiated, Xi'an became a cultural and political centre of China around the 11th century BC, with the founding of the Zhou Dynasty. It is often called the birthplace of Chinese civilization, is one of the Four Great Ancient Capitals of China, was the capital city of 13 imperial dynasties, is the eastern end to the Silk Road and home to the Terracotta Army of the first emperor of Qin - Qin Shi Huang.

Our CEO (Chief Experience Officer) Lee led the remaining three tour participants on a 3 hour "bicycle tour" of the 8.7 mile (14 kilometre) cobble stone topped "Xi'an City Wall". As this activity did not interest my existing lower back injury in the slightest, I trundled off on my own to check out the Muslim Quarter as well as the "Drum Tower" and "Bell Tower".

In my meanderings, I was also able to locate the impressively named "China People Wuzhuang Police Budui Xi'an Fire Fighting Detachment", which the locals know as the "11 red door fire station". The spot would mark the meeting point for this evenings Xi'an Evening Food Tour.

As a group, we all met back up again around 3PM at our accommodations - "HNA Hotel Downtown Xi'an", for Lee to offer some suggestions for the evening. I mentioned that we all had agreed to the participate in the evening food tour, at which point both the German girls said they were going to do their own thing. Somewhat incredulous, I reminded them that based on their acceptance and approval the day before, I had booked and paid the 375 RMB (77AUD/$59USD) for each of them. This is when they had the 3rd or 4th dose of convenient amnesia for the trip and simply wandered off. Yeah, you could say I was pissed off at the girls errant moral compasses, but rather than get upset, I offered the vacant spots to Lee to come join Rob and myself and maybe check out a different side of Xi'an for herself - which she accepted.

You know that old saying "ya had to be there"???

What's not to like about enjoying unlimited food & drinks, while getting whisked around the bustling streets & back alleys in a tuk-tuk, sampling Xian’s famous assorted delicacies including Chinese burgers, noodles & satays, culminating at the city's only local craft brewery, located at the base of Xian’s famous city wall??? Be Happy

• XI'AN ~ Exploring The City (Shaanxi, CHN)
• XI'AN ~ Drum Tower (Shaanxi, CHN)
• XI'AN ~ Bell Tower (Shaanxi, CHN)
• XI'AN ~ Lost Plate: Evening Food Tour (Shaanxi, CHN)

Day 7 - Xi'an
Opt to cycle the ancient city walls or visit the Great Mosque.
Arrive in Xi'an in the morning and, after checking into the hotel, opt to visit one of Xi'an's most fascinating areas - the Muslim Quarter. Tour the lovely and unusual Great Mosque, a wonderfully serene place to escape the hustle and bustle of the city, bargain at souvenir stalls and enjoy some of the best street food in China. The remaining city walls are a great place to watch the sunset or join the locals for ballroom dancing or tai chi in the early morning.