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Hi everyone,

I hope you will enjoy my place and my photos, I am looking forward to visits from friends, old and new.

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Sunday, 14 October 2018

Beijing - Houhai



Houhai is not far from where my daughter lives, Houhai means 'rear lake' and is a popular place with locals and visitors.


The streets leading down to the lake are full of really lovely shops, brilliant for buying all the presents. The shop above had amazing jewellery :)


So pretty :) I particularly love the little boy in the photo below, trying to post his letter :)



Yes the young lady is wearing a wedding dress with a denim jacket. Before the actual wedding ceremony the couple dress in their finery and have 'pre-wedding' photos taken in a pretty place. The dress the bride is wearing in this photo is not the one she will wear for her wedding. We saw two or three couples having their photos taken in this area, I think it is a lovely idea.  


Looking towards the main lake from the bridge. We were on our way to one of the lovely restaurants for food :)


Tourist boat trips :)



Another photo looking towards the main lake, can you see the crocodile in the front of the photo? It is of course a stone one, with a matching one on the other side of the canal, both were fenced off, but I am not sure why.

Sunday, 23 September 2018

Beijing revisited, The Summer Palace - the Opera House and Marble Boat.


Tucked away from the main tourist areas in the Garden of Virtue and Harmony building complex
 is the Opera House or Grand Theatre, situated in a very calm, peaceful and extremely beautiful area of its own.


This is the back of the building




The photos above and below show the individual rooms near the stage of the Opera House, it is easy to imagine the members of the Empress's Court enjoying an evening watching the Peking Opera.


The  Empress Cixi loved Opera and would have watched the performances from the Hall of Nurtured Joy which is situated directly opposite the stage, this building was not open to the public when we visited, but peeping through the window we saw the couches covered in yellow silk which would have been used by the Empress.


The Stage :)


Bats on a door decoration. Bats in the Chinese culture are symbols of happiness and joy. Five bats together as seen in the centre of the photo represent the Five Blessings, which are long life, wealth, health, love of virtue and a peaceful death.


Some of the many beautiful decorations that can be seen all round the Opera House area, every one is different, all are just gorgeous - I wonder how many hours were spent painting these?






The Golden Dragon is a frequently seen decoration in the Imperial Buildings, I love them, they just look so happy!


A small courtyard near the Opera House


A beautifully decorated small pavilion.


No tourists, only us!!


The head of a Dragon Boat :)


The gorgeous Marble Boat, built in 1755, and rebuilt in 1893 after the original was burnt down.


The superstructure is made of wood in the French style.



My daughter and my friend on one of the amazing bridges in the gardens.


Friday, 7 September 2018

Beijing revisited - The Summer Palace

The Garden of Harmonious Pleasures


The gateway leading to the Garden of Harmonious Pleasures.

I first visited the Summer Palace back in 2011, on that short visit we walked through the covered walkway to the marble boat.  I loved what I had seen on my last visit, but had no idea of how much we had missed on our last visit to this beautiful place.


My daughter has visited the Summer Palace on a number of occasions, and this time she took us to some of the lesser known parts, starting with this gorgeous garden, known as the Garden of Harmonious Pleasures. I have to say that this garden is probably my favourite place from this holiday, to me this summoned up what I had always thought of as being the essence of China.


The Garden consists of a large pond, surrounded by pretty pagodas, winding walkways, bridges and beautiful pavilions. The winding walkways are made of  over 100 sections, joining the various bridges, and buildings.


There were an amazing number of fish in the pond.


Looking across the pond to some of the pavilions in this amazing peaceful place.


Such a lovely place to sit and while the summer days away.


Everywhere you looked were gorgeous views, fantastic for taking photos :)


Some of the winding walkways surrounding the pond.




The marble bridge from the opposite side of the pond.


Beautiful buildings hiding amongst the trees




Looking toward the marble bridge, so pretty :)



The marble bridge.



It is noticeable in China that the parks and palaces are enjoyed by many people, when they are as beautiful as this it is not really surprising :)


In this country if a tree was leaning this much it would have been taken down, instead the chinese have gone to a lot of trouble to prop it up with poles, which to me is amazing. :)



Finally I couldn't resist taking a photo of this man, enjoying his visit to the garden :)