Welcome to Xi'an!! One of the oldest cities in China , with more than 3,100 years of history and a huge population of more than 8 million people, Xi'an is the capital of Shaanxi Province. I must admit to the fact that I hadn't done a huge amount of research before our visit to Xi'an, we were simply going to visit The Terracotta Warriors which I had booked online through Beijing Champagne tours, which was a full day Itinerary, including a visit to the Xi'an wall, The Terracotta Warriors and a few other bits and pieces to fill in the day. I'm not quite sure how to describe Xi'an, It is very old City, the smog is horrendous but at the same time it is very pretty and at night time...WOW!!!
Our tour guide Qin greeted us at our hotel at 9am and we departed for our tour. The day was going to be extremely hot with a predicted 35 degrees celcius and 90 % humidity. Qin decided that we should visit the wall first as it was already a warm 28 degrees, and we thought that was a fabulous idea...before the children could no longer bear the heat.
The Xi'an city wall was erected in the 14th century and was built of earth, lime and glutinous rice and truly is an amazing sight. Xi'an was was originally a walled city, and even today the wall is considered a landmark dividing the city into the old and the new. It is the most complete ancient city wall in China and one of the largest military defensive systems as well...to keep the mongolians out...of course. The wall is complete with a moat , drawbridge, gates and watch towers and it has become a must see destination in Xi'an.
When we arrived there were hundreds of people riding bikes, walking or taking the easy option of a buggy. We had 2 options, we could walk with Qin for an hour and a half and listen to his incredible knowledge...which was starting to wear thin and the children were tiring easily and sweating profusely... or apparently we could hire bikes and ride around the wall!! The kids were desperate to do this, of course it was an extra charge...but so worth it.
Qin organised the bikes and they first said Lucie and Will were too young for this activity, we quickly told them that the children were great bike riders and all was good.
We arranged to meet Qin in an hour and 20 minutes, grabbed our bikes, deciding that Lucie and I would opt for a tandem bike and off we set...a lovely welcoming breeze as we rode the 14km of the Xi'an wall, which was one of the children's highlights of our time in China.
It was incredible, we were dodging, oncoming traffic, pedestrians, cyclists and buggies helmet free, wind blowing in our hair.....surely there would be a stack somewhere along the wall.....but no..this was an injury free activity....... that would have to be a first for us....
|Quick pit stop to rehydrate....|
|Kermie the frog....|
|C'MON Mum...lets go...|
|A decorative Dragon....|
|And yes...the youngest was the first one to finish...what a gun my baby boy is...|
|Can you spot us through the smog???|
|Lucie and I riding tandem...so much fun...|
|Isabella waiting for us to catch up...|
|Can you spot us in the smogulous smog?|