BARRY's Feedback on 18-Day China Tour
Prior to this October 2009 trip, my last visit to China was in 2006, and one of my stops was the Shaolin monastery. I bought some souvenirs for my grandson, who is into martial arts. His comment was “you went to the Shaolin monastery and didn’t take me”. I promised him that one day I would take him.
His last visit to China was in 1994 when he was 7 years old. I decided to prepare a trip in which he would visit the monastery and as many sights as possible in the 16 days that he could devote for the trip. This was a “working trip” that did not allow for much relaxation. I prepared a non-stop, tight schedule and presented it to your Miss Candy Wei. This was my 11th trip to china, and I was aware of the rigors of scheduling. Candy did a fantastic job of working with me, and when there was a connection problem or flight cancellation, she patiently helped me through the changes. She is a WOW and was there when I needed her, even during the trip. When in Guilin, candy graciously met my grandson, Jared and I for dinner and we enjoyed a very good conversation. By the way, thank you for the dinner.
Finally, I prefer a private tour with a guide and driver rather than a group tour. We still get to meet some people, but do not miss the group tour when there is usually someone who will be late, not prepare for the new country they are visiting and unknowingly insult a local person. A private tour allows me the chance to set the pace and make changes, if necessary.
Without a doubt, the holding of a 1 year old panda bear at the breeding and research center was tops and will be one of the most exciting moments in my travels, which began in 1957. Already, people marvel at my photos.
The guides were all pleasant, knowledgeable, and attentive to our needs. All of the connections between cities were made timely. Especially our transfer from the 3 gorges dam to Wuhan where we picked up a flight to Xian. It was impossible to fly out of Yichang with the schedule. It was my biggest worry, but it went quite smoothly. The promptness of the guides helped to make our tight schedule easier.
Among all the hotels, the four seasons in shanghai is tops as far as I am concerned. I stayed there in 2006 and rate their steak house as the best dinner for westerners. The other 5 star hotels were true to their rating and were terrific in all aspects for our brief stay in each of them.
There was a wow at the Shaolin monastery as Jared was picked along with 2 other men to come on stage and work with one of the students, during the martial arts exhibition. The audience chose Jared as the winner and after the show, took pictures with an elder monk of the monastery and some other students
I have spoken to many people, shown many pictures, and told many stories of my trips to china. In fact, one person, after hearing stories and seeing pictures, spent his honeymoon in china. He and his wife were thrilled with their trip.
However, I think people should prepare themselves by reading about china, knowing in advance of the historical places as well as the modernization of the hotels, airport and planes, roads and shopping. Each city has its own night life, sights and sounds. A trip should not just be confined to the major cities, but stops to a smaller city may give the traveler an insight to the other part of china. I like to meet people who are not caught up in the hustle and bustle of the large city.
I have attached a photo of holding a panda bear, so far, everyone who has seen the picture are “green with envy”.
The Real Evaluation for the Destionation(s)