Xi’an is an ancient city in central China famous for its terra cotta warriors, Muslim Quarter, and historic wall that still surrounds the original citadel. We saw all this and more (read here), but what really stands out in my memory from this part of our trip occurred not in Xi’an itself but in a small town a short train ride away. There we completed “the world’s most dangerous hike” (a dubious, but catchy title) at Huashan (Mount Hua) and found ourselves stranded on top of the mountain with a night train to catch!
This post is mostly photos because I’m saving the rambling storytelling for Xi’an Part 2, our adventures on Mount Hua (to be posted Saturday!). In short, though, Xi’an is a really unique city that has preserved its ancient history in the core of the city. Modernity rises up around its (literal) 14th century walls, but inside well-preserved buildings from eras past remain intact without the distraction of skyscrapers. Its unique history can also be seen in its Muslim culture, which is the long-standing result of 7th century Persian and Afghani merchants marrying Chinese women. And of course, Xi’an is home to the famous terra cotta warriors! We had an amazing time exploring this vibrant city and learning more about its distinct culture and history. Explore with us through our photos!
As many of you know, Tommy and I had a month-long holiday for the Chinese New Year. Actually, I had a two-month holiday because my school is like, super hardcore about prepping students for exams – woohoo! Anyways, we spent our time off travelling through East and Southeast Asia, trying to see as many highlights of this amazing continent as we could before returning for the second semester. In four weeks, we visited 10 cities in 6 different countries! We feel so blessed to have had such an incredible trip. Now that we’re back in Sinan, I’ll be working on posts for each of the cities and hopefully sharing at least one per week. In the meantime, here is a quick run-down of our trip highlights!
Chinese food. Oh man, this topic could fill a textbook. Because China is such a huge country, there’s no simple way to summarize their food. Over the past five months in China, we’ve gotten pretty well acquainted with regional food but still have so much to learn! I’ll dig into what the differences are between Western Chinese food and authentic Chinese food, what we regularly eat in our province, and a bit about food throughout the rest of the country.
Since we’ve had some downtime lately, I thought I’d do a little “Living in China” mini-series. We’ve shared a lot about our travels, but not too much about the day-to-day of teaching in China. I’ll cover topics people have asked me about in the past and anything new that comes up, so let me know if you have any burning questions! First up, where we live and what scared me the most about moving to China: ~~toilets~~.