Archive for the ‘London Beijing Travel’ Category

Beijing public toilets VS London Public toilets

Monday, May 23rd, 2011
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Years ago using public toilets in Beijing was an experience not for the faint-hearted, dirty and smelly, a major tourist complaint from international tourists on their Beijing Tour. In the past 6 years Beijing has allocated over 400 million yuan (approx. 40 million GBP) investment to upgrade its public toilets. It has adopted a toilet star-rated system ranking the public toilets from one to five stars.
Now Beijing, with over 5,000 public toilets built and renovated, has become the world’s No. 1 metropolitan city in terms of public toilets. All the public toilets are free of charges. Most of the public toilets are equipped with remote-sensor flushing, automatic hand drier…
The squat toilets are widely used in Beijing and other parts of China, which are considered more hygienic for there is no body contact in comparison with the condition of some public toilet seats. But a squating culture of China clashes with that of seated toilts preferred by the Westerners, which are more comfortable and convenient for the elderly.
In recent years an increasing number of seated toilets have been available in the public toilets in Beijing. When you have sightseeing around the City of Beijing, it is very convenient for you just walk around 5 minutes to fnd a toilet.
You are kindly reminded that many of the public toilets in Beijing are short of toilet paper, especially for the low-rated toilets hutong areas, which are mainly used by neighborhood residents.

2 star toilets in Beijing

2 star toilets in Beijing


4 star toilets in Beijing

4 star toilets in Beijing

How to find the public toilets in Beijing?
1. Star-rated toilets in attractions
2. Residantial areas in hutong
3. The main streets
4. Shopping centers and department store
5. Hotel lobbies
6. McDonald’s
In London, it is quite difficult to find a toilet on the streets. And the number of public toilets in London are declining. Many of the limited public toilets implement a charge admission. The cost of answering nature’s call range 20 to 50 pennies each time.

50 pennies for toilet admission

Change for the 50 pennies coins via the change machine

Insert the 50 pennies and enter the loo.

How to find free toilets in London?
1. Museums and art galleries
2. McDonald’s
3. Shopping malls
4. Hotel lobbies
5. Inside the major attractions
A free toilet at the Portsmouth Railway Station, but with controlled openning time.

A signboard by a free toilet in the Train Station of Portmouth

The Street buildings in Beijing VS the Street Buildings in London

Friday, May 20th, 2011
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The city of Beijing has a history of over 800 years, dating back to 1153 AD the Jin Dynasty (1115-1234) which moved its capital from Shangjing to Beijing, called Zhongdu. The histoy of Beijing as a capital city went through four dynasties:
1.Beijing as capital city called” Shangdu” during Jin Dynasty (1115-1234)
2.Beijing as capital city called “Dadu” in Yuan Dynasty (1271 – 1368)
3.Beijing as capital city called  ”Beijing” in Ming Dynasty (1368 – 1644)
4.Beijing as capital city in Qing Dynasty (1644-1911)
At present, the buildings in Beijing mainly fall into the following four categories
1) The remaining imperial buildings in Ming and Qing Dynasties) (1368-1911), like Forbidden City, Temple of Heaven, Summer Palace…
2) Hutongs and Siheyuan (courtyards), the traditional residential buildings starting the Ming and Qing Dynasties (1638-1911)
3) Charactorless and low quality residential and office buildings after 1949
4) Trendy and weird buildings in the 21th century
Walking on the streets in Beijing, the street buildings that catch your eyes in great number are those mediocre buildings after 1949, interrupted by the some ultra-modern buildings designed and built in the 21th century. If you stick around in the some back streets, you will find the traditional vernacular buildings in Beijing – Hutong and courtyards.
For a first-time foreign visitor in Beijing, Beijing Tour will cover the visits to the imperial places like Forbiden City, Temple of Heaven and Summer Palace. Most of foreign tourists will choose a Beijing Hutong Tour to learn more about the traditional residential buildings. Many of them would also like to have a look at the trendy buildings like Bird’s Nest, CCTV Builiding, the National Center of Performing Arts and many more…, a kind of Beijing Modern City.
As a city, London has a much longer history, dating back to AD 43 when Roman legions under the leadership of Emperor Claudius who came north to Britannia and chose the site of London as their new provincial capital. By AD200 a thick wall encircled the city of London.
The history of London can be divided into eight periods:
1. The Romans & the Anglo-Saxons (43-1066)
2. The Normans (1066-1154)
3. The Middle Ages (1154-1485)
4. The Tudors (1485-1603)
5. The Stuarts (1603-1714)
6. The Gorgians (1714-1837)
7. The Victorians (1837-1910)
8. The House of Windsor(1837-1910)
In the course of the city contruction and development, the city of London went through wars and fire many times. The Great Fire of London, the worse of several conflagrations in London, raged for four days in 1666, destorying more than three-quarters of the buildings in the city. In 1940-41, the Blitze started in London with 57 consecutive nights of bombing, causing extensive damage and loss of life.
Wandering along the main streets in Londion, you will feel as if you were in a gigantic museum of Romanesque and Gothic buildings. Most of the buildings were built during the Gorgians (1714-1837) and the Victorians (1837-1910). For the city exterior, you don’t sense much change in the urban construction in the past 200-300 years with very few modern buildings!
Look at the photos of London street buildings below:


Regent Street 1


Regent Street 2

Regent Street 3

Regent Street 4

China Town

Leicester Square

Whitehall Street 1

Whitehall Street 2

Whitehall Street 3

Downing Street

Westminster Cathedral

Backkinghan Palace

Big Ben

The Tower Bridge

The Tower of London

British Museum

St. Paul’s Cathedral

the old City of London

The City of London 2

Holborn Street

Covernt Garden

New Oxford Street

Cartwright Garden

Beijing Out of Town Excursions VS London Out of Town Excursions

Thursday, May 19th, 2011
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With the finacial support from the Beijing local governments, a huge number of villages in the 8 suburban districts and 2 counties under the administration of Beijing Municipality have become much richer by being engaged in rual tourism, offering home guesthouse and catering service to the white-collar and middle class residents who live and work in the downtown capital.
Beijing Excursions have become a pastime and popular mode of living among hard-working middle class residents. Each weekend the major sights and scenic villages in the suburban Beijing are packed with holiday-makers who are armed with cars and vans, which have entered ordinary households with the improvement of living standard and fast developed economy.
Compared with the Beijing local residents, Londoners have much more privileges in terms of the natural sights and beautiful environment. Actually the Londoners are spoiled and pampered with the picturesque out of town stunning views. This has also hardened my belief that foreign vistors are more interested in the local traditional culture of Beijing than the pure Beijing Sightseeing. The local travel agencies in Beijing should focus on tapping the local traditions and activities rather than making use of the “harsh” natural sights.
Just have a glimpse of the stunning London out of town views:


Pass through a vllage


Drive by a village house


A village house

Rose Cottage

Driving by the green field

A small village with a church.

Sheep and Castle

Green field

the field

rape seeds blossoms