Discovering China

Khusbu Shauchan Lama explores four fantastc cities in China

I was in china for 10 days on a business trip and despite the tight schedule I was determined take out whatever little time I had to explore these amazing cities.

Bustling Beijing

Our first stop was at Beijing and the first thought that struck me when we landed was “OMG, IT’S SO COLD”, I was literally shivering. According to our schedule, we were supposed to have three days in Beijing. I was excited because there was so much to explore in this city and we had enough time for that. But because our flight was delayed we reached Beijing around two at night and headed straight to bed.

The next morning, we went to the Temple of Heaven.  The temple was indeed what heaven would probably be like. However, it is called the Temple of Heaven because the emperors of the Ming and Qing dynasties used to pray there to the gods for good harvest. Covering an area of 273 hectares, it is the largest architectural complex in the world. It is considered a reflection of the ancient civilisation of the Orient. It is a window through which we can see the

history of China.

The great wall is a must visit place in China and there was no way I would miss it. I didn’t have enough time to explore as I had to catch a train to Hangzhou but I still took the risk and went ahead. The best part of the Great Wall was reaching there, I took the open cable car which was an adventure in its own way and while returning I came down on a slider. It was so much fun. The Great Wall is mostly packed; people come from all over the world. The view from atop was beautiful and the fortress along the way was interesting. After exploring the beauty, I had my lunch and came back to the hotel just in time to leave for Hangzhou.

Heavenly Hangzhou

We left for Hangzhou on an overnight train which took us around 12 hours. We reached in the morning and had only a day to explore the place as we had to leave for Shanghai the next morning. Hangzhou was very clean and green. They have a 1:3 ratio for trees and people residing in the city. There is also this very famous saying in China which goes ‘Shang you tian tang, Xia you Su Hang’ which means “Up there you have heaven and down here you have Suzhou and Hangzhou” I do not know about Suzhou but Hangzhou felt like heaven.

As soon as I reached the hotel, I quickly got ready, wasting no time and left for West Lake, which is also considered as one of the most beautiful sites in China. West Lake is man-made and created after the Chinese love for garden style parks for recreation. At first the lake looks like any ordinary lake but once you take a boat and explore more, you will know why it is so famous. There is this beautiful garden in the middle of the lake, which is called the ‘Three Pools mirroring the moon’. It is perhaps the most famous of West Lake’s classic sights.

Shanghai surprise

I took the bullet train to Shanghai, a train that can go up to 300 km per hour. The first day in Shanghai, I went to the BUND. It was magical and among the best things I’ve ever seen in my life. I’ve been on the Star Ferry in Hong Kong which is similar but this is at a completely other level. I just stayed there for an hour staring at it.

We had the next day all to ourselves and we went to explore as much as we could. I bought a ticket for the Big Bus

sightseeing which allows you to hop on and hop off. The first stop was Yu Garden which was built in 1559 by the then governor for his father to spend his leisure time in his old age. It was beautiful and spacious. It was the most beautiful garden I’d ever seen. The next stop was Shanghai Tower, the second tallest building in the world. The observation deck was on the 88th floor. Visibility from the tower was not great because of bad weather but it was still worth the experience. After that we went to Xin Tian Di and to the Nanjing Road Pedestrian Street to shop.

Before my flight to Chengdu, I went to the Jade Buddhist Temple. This temple was built in 1882, to keep two Jade Buddha statues which had been brought from Burma. The jade Buddha Temple is a good place to go whether you are a Buddhist or not, as the peaceful atmosphere adds a kind of richness to our busy modern society.


After yet another delay with our flight, we reached Chengdu after midnight and headed straight to bed. We had only a day to visit Chengdu and I wanted to go to the Panda Breeding Research Base but we couldn’t as the pandas would be sleeping at that hour. So we went to watch ‘The mask changing show’ which is very popular here. I loved the show and how the actors changed their masks in a fraction of a second is going to always remain a mystery to me.