China Travel Tips for National Day Holiday

October is one of the best months to marvel at China’s majestic scenery, when the colorful, lyrical autumn glitters Its varied continent. But you can expect some creaming crowds and inevitable queues in the early October. China’s most famous tourist sites reach fever pitch from October 1 -7, which is the National Day holiday of China and known as the “Golden Week”. Here are some useful tips and pointers to help survive during Golden Week and ensure you a delightful China visit.

Tian An Men Square

1. Foreign tourists are discouraged to travel in China during the “Golden Week”. It is better to avoid doing so if possible. You can make it just before or after this period, when there are usually smaller crowds, and the cost is comparatively lower.

2. Plan thoroughly and seek out travel tips before set off. Make yourself familiar with the destinations, along with the attractions’ locations, traveling route, train stations, hotels and restaurants. It is better to bring with a tourist map with both Chinese and English language.

China Great Wall Tours

3. If you don’t like the holiday crowd, try to avoid visiting the most popular tourist destinations such as Lijiang, Yangshuo, Fenghuang Ancient Town, as well as those famous places of interest, including Forbidden City and Badaling Great Wall in Beijing, Terra Cotta Warriors museum in Xian, West Lake in Hangzhou, and Jiuzhougou Vally. Be positive and patient if there are queues and crowds.

4. Consult with a reliable travel agency and book a few things in advance. Generally, train tickets for the Golden Week are difficult to get; and the hotel rooms are in short supply. So book your tickets and room ahead of time. Travelling with a local guide and driver can take out a lot of stress.

Touring China in Early October

5. You probably will have to accept paying more than normal. The tour cost during the Golden Week could get higher, since the prices of hotel rooms, flight tickets, and food may rise much.

6. Consider carrying with some regular medications, in case of some minor cuts and bruises. A China trip during Golden Week will be not for hypertensive or cardiac patients.

7. Be extra careful with your valuables. When part of the big crowds, watch out for your wallet, camera and cell phone, beware of thieves.

China Autumn Tours

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Lhasa-Shigatse Railway Open in August 2014

A new railway in Tibet has open to the public since August 16th, 2014. It links the Tibet’s two largest cities, the capital city Lhasa and Shigatse.

Spanning 251 km, the new rail line starts from Lhasa, the last stop of the “Sky Way” Qinghai-Tibet Railway, then passes Doilungdeqen County, Qushui Country, and traverses through the Yarlung Zangbo Grand Canyon for approximately 90 km, finally reaches Shigatse of Southwest Tibet.

Lhasa-Shigatse Railway

Qinghai -Tibet Railway

Lhasa-Shigatse rail line is regarded as a big outreach program of the Qinghai-Tibet Railway – the world’s longest plateau rail. It was put into operation in January 2011, and finally completed on August, 2014. There are totally 14 stations on this trail. And the trains are allowed to travel at a speed of up to 120 kilometers per hour. In this way, the travel time between the two cities will be cut in half, with the journey time being about 3 hours.

Lhasa-Shigatse railway traverses on the world’s highest plateau at an elevation of 4,000 m. Many visitors has suffered from altitude sickness when taking a train within this region, so the coaches are installed with an oxygen diffusion system to relieve the discomfort caused by high altitude and ensure each passenger a smooth and pleasant trip. (Read More about Qinghai-Tibet Railway on:https://www.easytourchina.com/blog-v1229-highlights-along-…)

Lhasa-Shigatse railway will better connect most parts of Tibet, further Tibet and the country’s other regions. It is expected to improve local people’s travel conditions, and boost tourism and economic development in Tibet.

There are so many destinations and places of interest in Tibet that are both tranquil and stunning, including Potala Palace, Jokhang Temple, Changtang Grassland, holy Namtso Lake, Yamdrok Lake, Mt. Everest and so forth. (Click for China Tibet tours: https://www.easytourchina.com/tour-c291-tibet-tours)

The Famous Chinese Spicy Dishes: How to Cook Chicken with Chilies

For many foodies, of all the Chinese food, the spicy dishes usually served in Sichuan and Hunanrestaurants fascinate them the most. It’s hard to beat Chinese spicy food as one of the must-try experiences when touring China. Here, we offer this recipe with a set of instructions telling you how to cook Chicken with Chilies, one the most famous and delicious Chinese spicy dishes!

The way to cook Chicken with Chilies (辣子鸡)

1. Prepare the ingredients: one chicken with appropriate fried peanuts, salt, white sugar, onion, dry red pepper, chili, vegetable oil, cooking wine, and a little garlic, ginger and chicken powder seasoning.

Ingredients for Cooking Chinese Food

2. Clean the chicken, cut it into smaller pieces, then mixed with cooking wine and salt, and wait for 20 minutes.

3. Cut onion, garlic and dry red pepper into slices

4. Heat the oil in a large saucepan and cook the chicken pieces with ginger, fry them to golden, then remove the oil.

5. Fry the chicken pieces again until golden brown, crispy, then put them into a plate.

Chinese cuisine  Spicy Food in China

6. Heat up the oil again, fry the onion, garlic slices, later put into the dry red pepper and chili, stir-fry over low heat until hot and fragrant.

7. Stir-fry chicken pieces with the hot and fragrant seasoning in the pan.

8. The last step is to add with the fried peanuts, sprinkle a little chicken powder seasoning, white sugar and onion slices, and stir well.

Cook Chicken with Chilies

Finally, a dish of nice and mouthwatering Chicken with Chilies is ready!

Chicken with Chilies

Recommended China Gourmet tour

7-day Gourmet Package to China

15-day China Culinary & Cooking Tour 

The Way to Practice Kung Fu Tea Ceremony

Fall in love with Chinese tea, as well as its fascinating tea culture.

In china, tea enthusiasts do not only pay great attention to the quality of tea leaves, the material of tea set, but also the way to brew tea and drink it. As a tea master, you ought to therefore master the Chinese tea ceremony rituals, which represent the spirit of the “Way of Tea”(茶道) with four basic principles: thrifty, harmony, respect and aestheticism.

Chinese Kungfu tea set

Kung fu tea or gongfu tea is a traditional tea drinking custom originally in Chaoshan area of China’s Guangdong and Fujian province, and has been the most famous and popular tea ceremony throughout China. People there practice kung fu tea every day and entertain friends and guests with it. Today, many overseas Chinese from Chaoshan area still keep this drinking custom.

To practice the ceremony, people need to prepare a whole set tea service, a table big enough to hold the tea-making utensils, fine spring water and high quality tea leaves. Ideally the surrounding should be tranquil, and you have the peace of mind. Thus it is called kung fu tea (making tea with effort).

Recommended China Tea Tours:

9-day China Tea Tour

12-day China Tea Culture Tour

Chinese Tea Cups

Prepare the kung fu tea set

Being able to find the most adequate tea set is the first and foremost thing for kung fu tea ceremony. Purple clay tea set produced in Yixing, Jiangsu province is considered the best.

Tea PotTea water bowl

Here is a list of the main items used in a gongfu tea ceremony: 

*A small unglazed purple clay teapot

*Several tiny cups

* A brewing vessel

*Three tea basins or bowls for the used tea leaves and used water

* A tea tray – a deep, flat bottom porcelain plate to hold tiny cups

* A tea mat

*A tea bottle

*A water bowl

*A hot water kettle, e.g. an electric kettle

*A tea spoon (tea pick) to clear the teapot spout and a tea holder for weighing and dispensing tea leaves.

Gongfu Tea setTea Spoon

How to brew kung fu tea

1. Rinse all vessels with hot water. This can purify the vessels, and warms the pot and cups. The used water is then poured away into a water bowl.

2. Put the tea leaves into the tea pot. For a 150 ml tea pot at least 15 grams of tea leaves are used. However depending on the size of the pot and the strength of the tea the pot may be filled between 1/2 and 2/3 full.

3. Rinsed the tea leaves with hot water. This is to remove any dust from the leaves. Pour out the tea water.

4. Brew the tea. Heat the water to the appropriate temperature (different teas require different temperature). Wait for a few seconds, then pour it into the pot from some height until the pot is full. It helps to release the tea’s aroma.

Kungfu Tea Ceremony Making Chinese tea

5. Wait for 20 to 50 seconds, open the pot lid and remove the tea dust on the surface. Put on the lid again.

6. Pour the hot water on the tea pot. It allows the tea to be simultaneously heated from both inside and outside. When the pot body is drained of water, the tea is ready.

7. Pour the hot water into the cups to heat and rinse them with hands. This requires professional skill and gives a wonderful artistic performance.

8. Pour the tea water evenly into the tea cups, in a circular manner around the guests. Remember to keep the cups close to the pot, pouring slowly, so as not to disperse the flavor of the tea.

9. Finally, enjoy the aroma of the tea as well as its taste.

Chinese Kung Fu Tea Ceremony

However, to bring out the best aroma, taste and after taste of each tea through kung fu tea ceremony, you will need an in depth knowledge of Chinese tea, and should keep practicing. You may join a China tea tour to marvel at the sophisticated kungfu tea ceremony served by tea expects.

Shaolin Temple Is to Develop Online kung Fu Games

The middle part of China in Dengfeng County of Henan province is a Kung fu lover’s dream. Impressively, it is home to various time-honored religious institutions and temples, of which, the Buddhist Shaolin Temple is absolutely a big draw for most travelers, and one of the most famous temples in China. A lot of people from home and abroad have come all the way to Shaolin Temple to join the excellent Kung Fu training taught by Shaolin masters.

Shaolin kung Fu

Shaolin kung Fu

Built in 495, Shaolin Temple is the birthplace of Shaolin Kung Fu – an important branch of Chinese martial art, and one of the ways that the monks of the temple practice Zen Buddhism. For centuries, Shaolin Temple has become the cradle of Chinese martial arts and showed visitors power and grace Kung Fu demonstrations. Today the temple is devoted to expanding the Buddhist zen culture and the ancient martial art of kung fu by various ways, and especially with modern technology.  (Read more about Shaolin Temple on https://www.easytourchina.com/scene-v147-shaolin-temple)

Recently, according to Shaolin temple’s management company that the temple will develop a new series of kung fu themed video games to introduce itself and encourage more young people to take interest in the ancient Chinese culture.

The Henan Shaolin Intangible Assets Management Co., LTD, owned by the temple, has signed a cooperation agreement with China Mobile Games and Entertainment Group (CMGE) allowing the latter to use the brand of Shaolin to create Kung fu games for both mobile devices and television. In this way, all people can learn Chinese Kung Fu through the games. And Shaolin will further expand its influence, especially among younger audiences. (Learning Kung Fu in China: https://www.easytourchina.com/tour-c11-china-kung-fu-tour)

Actually, Shaolin Temple was the first temple in China to digitalize its business and now has nine subsidiary companies, including martial arts studies, calligraphy, medicine, food and movies. It was in 1996 that the temple first owned its internet domain name, and in 2001 had its own website, publishing Shaolin kung fu secrets to the public for the first time.

Later in 2008, it started its e-commerce business on Taobao, the most popular online retail platform in China, selling Kung Fu costumes, T-shirts, candles, the controversial Shaolin Medical Book and martial arts books. Then in 2012, it opened accounts on social media website Weibo (similar to Twitter), with 70,000 followers so far.

China’s Rainbow Mountain: Zhangye Danxia Landform Geological Park

Zhangye Danxia Landform Geological Park in China

Zhangye city in northwestern China’s Gansu Province is a photographer’s dream, by boasting the spectacle of Danxia landforms extending for 410 square kilometers in Linze and Sunan counties. With its majestic table mountain terrain, odd-shaped Danxia cliffs, and dynamic, dramatic colors, Zhangye Danxia Landform Geological Park is one of the most beautiful corner on earth and displays an unique type of petrographic geomorphology found in China.

The formation

Zhangye Danxia Landform

Zhangye Danxia Landform is a masterpiece of great nature’s design, with the erosion of red sandstone, and was shaped 6 million years ago. Influenced by its special geologic framework, together with thousands of years of freeze-thaw peeling, wind and rain, isolated peaks and steep stone walls formed, and differed in color, texture, shape, size and pattern, then giving rise to its present appearance.

China Zhangye Danxia Landform

Zhangye Danxia landform on Qianlian Mountain is mainly composed of red gravel, sandstone and mudstone. It is typical of an arid or semi-arid climate and stands out with the cross layers, eroded caves, vertical joints, and multi-colored slopes.

The multi-colored range

China's Rainbow mountain of Zhangye Danxia Landform

It is hard to believe this insane mountain formation is real, but it do exists! Many visitors call the mountains here “the rainbow mountains” for the layers of different colored sandstone, ranging from red, orange, green, yellow, blue, white, etc being extremely stunning when the sun shines again after rain.

The three scenic spots

Zhangye  Linze Danxia Scenic Area

Zhangye Danxia Landform Geological Park is divided into three scenic spots: Linze Danxia Scenic Area, Sunan Danxia Scenic Area and Binggou Danxia Scenic Area. The first area has four viewing platforms for catching wonderful pictures. The second area is much bigger and offers more beautiful scenery with less crowds. And the third area is known as “window lattice and palace-shaped Danxia topography”.

Colorful Danxia Landform in Zhangye

Zhangye Binggou Danxia Scenic Area

Recommended China tours to Zhangye Danxia Landform Geological Park: 

6-day Wonders of Badain Jaran Desert & Danxia Landform

10-day Gansu Highlights plus Desert Exploration

Travel in China with Your Dog: Tips for Flying with Pets

For many of us, travelling without a pet runs the risk of being nervous throughout the journey. We can’t just separate from our beloved companions, especially when travelling abroad. Our dogs are spoiled at home. But when it comes to taking an air travel in China, there are many restrictions and requirements you’ll need to consider.

Here are some suggestions for taking your pet on a plane in China, making the journey easier and more safety for both you and the pet.

 Air Travel in China with Dog

1. Consult with your airline. Make sure there is an aerobic cabin (the cargo hold exclusively for pets) available to transport your pet on the flight before booking the ticket. it’s best to fly in the morning or evening during the summer, and midday during the winter to avoid extremely hot or cold temperatures.

2. Call the airport to get to know the restrictions for your pet boarding. it is suggested that you arrive at the airport three hours before the department time. Consider booking a direct flight to help ease stress and anxiety for your pet and avoid the wrong transporting.

3. Carry the health certificate of your pet issued by a vet. This is the first and foremost thing to keep in mind.

4. Prepare a pet travel carrier with drinking bowl. Consult with your airline about the size and the specifications.

Travel in China with pets

5. Affix a travel label to the carrier with your pet’s name and your contact information, in case that your pet get strayed .

6. Consider giving your pet tranquilizer. Generally, sedation is not advised. But talk with your veterinarian whether or not to prescribe a tranquilizer for your pet prior to flying.

7. Feed the pet at least 3 hours before the flight. Pee before boarding to avoid stomach upset and discomfort caused by the high-altitude flight.

8. Upon Arrival: when arrive at the destination, wait for about 1 hour to get your pet on the local cargo terminal.

Tips for Taking Pet on A Plane

Familiarize yourself with the additional pet policies of different airlines in China

China Airlines (Taiwan) – Passengers with pet should contact with the reservation department in advance, and arrive at the airport two hours before the departure time. The disability assistance dogs, including guide dog, hearing dog are allowed to accompany the master on the plane without paying additional transportation fee.

Air China – This airline may refuse the pregnant pets, and those who have given birth within 48 hours.

China Southern Airline – Each passenger can transport only one pet, weighing no more than 32kg. Each pet should be put into a separate cage or travel carrier. However, a pair of birds can be put in the same cage. Moreover, passengers travelling with pet should apply for the pet transportation at least 72 hours before flying. Make sure to arrive at the airport no less than 1.5 hours prior to the scheduled departure time.

China Tours with Pet

Top-selling China tours by Easy Tour China:

8-day China Golden Triangle Tour 

11-day Golden Triangle with Yangtze Cruise

15-day China Impression with Yangtze Cruise