I flew to Xi’an from Xiamen, a flight which left that beautiful little coastal city and travelled over sharp mountain peaks which were the most verdant I had ever seen. When I arrived in Xi’an, one of the biggest adjustments I had to make was coping with the size of this ancient capital of China. Occupied for over 6,000 years it’s a majestic city which was the centre of culture and power to thirteen dynasties of China. Though extremely modern in parts, it’s a city which is redolent with the fascinating past of China and its intersections with the West.
As I was staying within the city walls I decided to make this area my focus and get to know the fascinating streets within the four gates and as many historic sites as possible.
Theres nothing quite like walking, when you re a tourist, for discovering little nooks and crannies and out of the way places.
As much as I enjoyed the beautifully preserved sites of the ancient capital, I also enjoyed scenes of everyday life for the residents. The people’s park was a green and shady place on a hot day to sit and watch the populace enjoying life; playing badminto, Ping Pong or practicing Tai Chi by the river.