It was our fist day in Beijing. We landed at the city at around 4 a.m. without having slept much during the flight. We took the train and later the underground to our hotel, completed the check-in and bought some breakfast at a FamiliyMart. Our bodies needed coffee and something sweet to deal with jet lag in our first day in China. We had a plan for it but trips are not always as we expect them to be, so we had to improvise a little bit.
As we already explained in this post, after crossing the security check that is required to enter the Tiananmen Square, we arrived at the sale office to purchase the tickets to the Forbidden City. However, we were told that all tickets for that day were sold out. We were tired and a bit disappointed: our trip to China had not started well. It was a very hot day but anyway we decided to anticipate our visit to the Summer Palace and now we can say that it really exceded our expectations.
Some days ago we arrived back home after two weeks in China. Although two weeks seem a very short time to visit such a huge country, we have enjoyed a lot of those 14 days in China and have managed to discover some of the most important Chinese jewels. However, we are already thinking of a second visit to this amazing country, maybe to Sichuan, Yunnan or Tibet. Who knows… 🙂
We already shared in a previous post the itinerary that we had planned for this trip. Generally speaking, we followed our initial plan, but we had to introduce some minor changes due to the difficulty of getting tickets to enter the Forbidden City in Beijing and the train bookings. The agency that had been managing the train bookings for us told us some weeks before our trip that it was not possible to get tickets for the exact trains that we had requested. Fortunatelly, we had booked our accommodation with free cancellation in Booking.com, as we always do. This made us change our plans as per the nights that we would spend in Xi’an and Pingyao.
It was not in our plans to spend a night in Uis. Therefore I didn’t look to the satellite images from that part in the border of Damaraland. Uis was in the road map that we had, but let’s say it is not easy to find the roads when there are no signs. We left the town thinking that we were going towards Twelfontein but after driving for more than 100 kilometres we realized we were going in the wrong direction!
We didn’t know if we had got lost. We were completely out of the maps, with no possibilities of calling anyone and at some point we realized that we had not seen any car in any direction, nor any person, for the last 4 hours. Fortunately, after driving up a hill and managing not to fall through the cliff on the left-hand side, we spotted a human building down there. It was just a house size building made of stones.
We had a lot of adventure in the Skeleton coast, like the jet flight above the Namib desert, the shipwrecks and the seal colonies, like the 4×4 expedition to Sandwich Harbour and the horse riding to the moon landscape. And after that we planned our route to go deep into the dead land of Damaraland. This land is a place where you don’t want to get lost, you don’t want to run out of oil or water, where there are almost no possibilities of calling anyone unless you have a satellite telephone and where you drive hundreds of kilometres without getting in touch with any human. Only wild animals like lions, rhinos, elephants or zebras and rocks. Red Rocks, yellow rocks and brown rocks, black rocks…