China Journals

Tracking Dinosaurs in China

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A May 2010 trip to China by Linda Hoernke

Bejing Museum of Natural History Photo, Beijing, China More Photos
Quote: I do volunteer work at a dinosaur museum in my hometown and when the opportunity came up to go to China on a Paleo Tour with the museum, I took it.

Tracking Chinas Dinosaurs

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Story/Tip

Liujiaxia Dinosaur Geopark Photo, China, Asia
Quote:
I do volunteer work at a dinosaur museum in my hometown and when the opportunity came up to go to China on a Paleo Tour with the museum, I took it.My friend and I flew into Beijing early for the usual tourist sightseeing. Our China contact for Sinofossa Tours met us at the airport and took us to the Beijing Xinjiang Hotel in the Hadian District. We joined our host for dinner and found that you do not order separately on the menu. All meals come in large quantities and are served on a huge lazy susan for all to share. Food was interesting and good from tofu with an orange sauce and green onions to beef strips marinated with vegetables and sliced lotus root sautéed in olive oil. ...Read More

Xinjiang Hotel Beijing

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Hotel

Xinjiang Hotel Beijing Photo, Beijing, China
Quote:
The Xinjiang Hotel is in the Hadian District of Beijing. The hotel is upscale, comfortable and even has a computer in some of the rooms. Xinjiang Hotel is a good destination for business clients which is invested in by the government and managed by Xinjiang Hongfu Jiayuan Hotel Management Company. It is a luxury complex with accommodations, dining, recreation and convention services. The hotel is within walking distance of the Beijing Zoo and shopping. It is situated just 15 minutes from Tiananmen Square, the Forbidden City, 10 minutes from the West Train Station and 30 minutes from the airport. The hotel is 6 stories and has 166 rooms and suites equipped with high...Read More

Member Rating 5 out of 5 on June 3, 2010

Xinjiang Hotel Beijing
7 Sanlihe Rd.
Beijing, China
+86 10 6833 5599

Great Wall at Mu Tian Yu

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Attraction | "Mutianyu Section of The China Wall"

Great Wall at Mu Tian Yu Photo, China, Asia
Quote:
Mutianyu is located in the Huairou District about 56 miles from the city of Beijing. This long section of the Wall was originally built during the Qi Dynasty in the 6th century and is classified as the most beautiful section of the Wall. The scenery is spectacular as the wall winds its way across mountains and woodlands and it is much less crowded than the Badaling section.There are 22 original style watchtowers and Mutianyu is the longest fully restored part of the wall. The paths, pavements and steps of the Great Wall at Mutianyu are well paved with granite slabs and walking conditions pose no risks other than some of the steps differ in height and width. There is a steep climb form the ...Read More

Member Rating 5 out of 5 on June 2, 2010

Great Wall at Mu Tian Yu
San Du He Village
Beijing, China 101400
+86 (0)10 6162 6873

Beijing National Stadium (Bird's Nest)

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Attraction | "The Birdsnest"

Beijing National Stadium (Bird's Nest) Photo, Beijing, China
Quote:
"The Birdsnest" was designed for the 2008 summer Olympics in Beijing. Hergog & de Meuron of Switzerland built the building which houses an 80,000 seat stadium. The exterior included 42,000 tons of steel twisted around in a lattice work resembling a birds nest, hence the name. The 2008 Summer Olympics, officially known as the Games of the XXIX Olympiad, took place Aug. 8th-24th. There were 43 new world records and 132 new Olympic records set and the United States had the most medals with a total of 110. The stadium cost $423 million and the 2008 Olympic motto of "One World One Dream" trully can be felt when entering this massive structure. There is an energy to it. ...Read More

Member Rating 5 out of 5 on June 3, 2010

Beijing National Stadium (Bird's Nest)
No.1 Guojiatiyuchang South Road, Chaoyang District
Beijing, China
86-10-84373008

Forbidden City

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Attraction | "The Forbidden City"

Forbidden City Photo, Beijing, China
Quote:
My first impression of The Forbidden City was to run away from the crowds and the noise. Thousands of people shoving and pushing to get in line for a ticket...thousands more yelling to buy a booklet or whatever. The Chinese seem to have the words push and shove built into their character; not because they are rude but because they are used to sharing space with so many people. The Forbidden City is a symbol of royalty. During the Ming Dynasty, Emperor Yongle, built the palace in 14 years with over 200,000 laborers, finishing in 1420. The Ming capitol was then relocated to Beijing and the palace became the home to 23 Ming and Qing emperors until 1911. There are 800 buildings an...Read More

Member Rating 5 out of 5 on June 3, 2010

Forbidden City
North Of Tiananmen Square Dong Cheng District
Beijing, China 100009
+86 (0)10 6512 2255

Drum & Bell Towers

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Attraction | "The Bell & Drum Towers"

Drum Tower Ceremony Photo, Beijing, China
Quote:
The bell and drum were originally used as musical instruments in China and later used for telling time. Dating back to the Han Dynasty (206 BC-220), there was a morning bell and an evening drum. With no other means to keep track of time, the bell and drum played an important part in helping people during their work and life schedules. As a result, the Bell & Drum towers were constructed in almost every city throughout the country. The stairway to the top of the Drum Tower is narrow and steep.The main room at the top housed huge drums and the biggest drum is the only one of the original 24 drums left. Kublai Khan built the first Drum Tower on this site in 1272. The present tower dates b...Read More

Member Rating 5 out of 5 on June 4, 2010

Bejing Museum of Natural History

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Attraction | "Beijing Natural History Museum"

Bejing Museum of Natural History Photo, Beijing, China
Quote:
The Beijing Natural History Museum was founded in 1951 and was the first large scale natural history museum created in China. The BMNH owns more than 200,000 specimens. The collections include major dinosaur fossils and mounted skeletons. The museum also engages in scientific research in paleontology, ornithology, mammals and invertebrates, zoology and botany. The "Dinosaur World" is divided into two parts, the Jurassic Park and the Cretaceous Park. The Jurassic Park dates back 140 million years ago and displays dinosaurs from that period, such as Mamenxi dinosaur and the flesh eating Yongchuan dinosaur.The Ancient Animal Exhibition Room displays amniotes and other vertebrates...Read More

Member Rating 5 out of 5 on June 4, 2010

Bejing Museum of Natural History
126 Tian Qiao Nan Road
Beijing, China 100050
+86 (0)10 6702 4431

Museum of the Institute of Vertebrate Paleontology and Paleoanthropology Photo, Beijing, China
Quote:
The Chinese Museum of the Institute of Vertebrate Paleontology and Paleoanthropology is one of the largest paleontological institutions in the world and a global leader in the study of vertebrate fossils. Research is focused on both paleontology and those relating to human prehistory. The paleoanthrological study mainly deals with origin and evolutionary history of fossil human and Paleolithic archeology.Vertebrate paleontological research focuses on the distribution of various vertebrate groups as well as geographical, paleoclimatological and molecular biological problems. Many research results have been achieved and research papers have been published in Nature and Science. ...Read More

Member Rating 5 out of 5 on June 4, 2010

Museum of the Institute of Vertebrate Paleontology and Paleoanthropology
142 Xizhimenwai Str.
Beijing, China
+86 (10) 68356313

Xian Le Garden Hotel

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Hotel | "Xian Garden Hotel"

Xian Le Garden Hotel Photo, Xian, China
Quote:
The Xian Garden Hotel captures the spirit of the Tang Dynasty with it's spacious garden, museum, and theater restaurant that surrounds a small but beautiful lake that is home to colorful peacocks. The hotel is a display of Chinese architcture with it's pavillions and towers and has won the Architectural Gold Medal of Chinese Hotels in 1997. The hotel has 292 rooms that are clean & comfortable and include air conditioning, satellite TV, internet access, mini bar, coffee pot and hair dryer, safe deposit box and laudry service. Choices of rooms include standard, triple, deluxe, and deluxe suites. A sauna room and fitness center are available with first-class massage facilities...Read More

Member Rating 5 out of 5 on June 4, 2010

Xian Le Garden Hotel
No. 8 Lao Dong South Road
Xian, China 710068
029-84263388

Ban Po Museum

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Attraction

Ban Po Museum Photo, Xian, China
Quote:
The Ban Po Museum is located in the Shaanxi Province about 3 miles from the city of Xian. The museum is a Neolithic archeological site dating back 6000 years. At the center of the village is a large room that is surrounded by many smaller rooms. All the doors face the larger room, showing the villagers were well connected. A ditch surrounded the village which was probably used to keep wild animals out. There is an area for making pots and also a cemetery. Over 170 graves have been uncovered and some of the bones were "folded." These were people of importance as they were buried, dug up and later reburied. The exhibit area covers an acre and is divided into two exh...Read More

Member Rating 5 out of 5 on June 1, 2010

Ban Po Museum
Shaanxi Province, Banpo Road, #1
Xian, China
+86 (29) 83512375

Terracotta Warriors and Horses and Museum

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Attraction | "Terra Cotta Army"

Terracotta Warriors and Horses and Museum Photo, Xian, China
Quote:
One of the most important rulers in Chinese history, Emperor Qin Shi Huang is well known for his contributions to China as he is for sacrificing the lives of thousands of laborers for his visionary projects. He was made King of the state of Qin at the age of thirteen and by the time he was thirty-eight he conquered and united China from warring states to become its First Emperor. He built the Great Wall and collected works of art. He was obsessed with immortality and ordered 700,000 workers to build his tomb of life size soldiers, chariots & horses. Over 8000 life-size clay warriors were created to protect the tomb and no two are alike. His 3000 wives and concubines followe...Read More

Member Rating 5 out of 5 on June 5, 2010

Terracotta Warriors and Horses and Museum
Lintong District, Shaanxi Province
Xian, Shaanxi
029 391 1961

Big Wild Goose Pagoda

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Attraction

Big Wild Goose Pagoda Photo, Xian, China
Quote:
The Big Wild Goose Pagoda is a holy place for Buddhists. It is located in the southern suburb of Xian City, about 2 and a half miles from the downtown area.Built during the Tang Dynasty (618-907), it is a well preserved ancient building and holy place for the study of Buddhist scriptures. The pagoda is a good example of Chinese architecture as it was built with layers of bricks without any cement. The building reaches over 112 feet and looks similar to a square cone. Originally built 589 AD, it was renovated in 1964 after an earthquake. The stairway inside to the top is steep and offers views of the grounds below. The temple once had 13 separate courtyards and contained over 18...Read More

Member Rating 5 out of 5 on June 7, 2010

Lanzhou Friendship Hotel Photo, Lanzhou, China
Quote:
The Lanzhou Friendship Hotel was built in 1956. They have 650 rooms including 31 meeting and conference rooms. The hotel serves a buffet style breakfast that caters to the originality of the Chinese culture. The beef noodles are a specialty in this area and you can watch them actually make the noodles...an art all its own. They also have a beauty salon, bar, laundry service and tennis courts. The Lanzhou Friendship Hotel is the largest three star foreign hotel in the area. The rooms are large and comfortable although the beds are very hard. But, this is common among Chinese hotels. The one downside was constant noise from the outside. Lanzhou is a develo...Read More

Member Rating 3 out of 5 on June 5, 2010

Lanzhou Friendship Hotel
No. 16 Xijin West Road, Qilihe District
Lanzhou, China
+86 931 2689999

Hezheng Paleozoological Museum

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Attraction

Hezheng Paleozoological Museum Photo, China, Asia
Quote:
The Hezeng Paleozoological Museum of Gansu Province is located east of Hezheng County. There are numerous species of mammal fossils and the Hezeng Museum has one of the worlds most unique collections. It covers almost three & a half acres & includes over 10,000 pieces & 110 species of 7 orders in 2 classes. These precious fossils have been under excavation in this county since the 1950s. Colelondonta Nihowanensis, the earliest woolly rhino in the world can be found here along with the Hipparon, a three toed horse that lived from 5 to 2.5 million years ago. The Ovibos, which resembles a sheep but has the characteristics of the musk ox lived 12-5 million years ago ...Read More

Member Rating 5 out of 5 on June 6, 2010

Liujiaxia Dinosaur Geopark Photo, China, Asia
Quote:
The Geopark is one of 138 National Geoparks in China. The tracks are in the Lower Cretaceous (130 million years ago) Hekou Group which is housed in a wonderful museum on the side of a mountain. The discovery of these trackways and others led to the establishment of the Liujiaxia site as a Geopark. Dinosaur tracks were found in 1999 and the museum opened in 2005. This site has well preserved tracks and was the first significant fossil footprint discovery in the Gansu Province. The site is spectacular and was excavated by hand. The dinosaur tracks include meat eating theropod, long necked sauropod tracks, plant eating ornithopod trackways, bird tracks and a pterosau...Read More

Member Rating 5 out of 5 on June 6, 2010