Aug. 7, 2015
Arrived in Beijing and ready for anything! JK - spent the whole day sleeping in our hotel. (I must confess that this timing was deliberate - we left JFK the night of Wed 8/5 and landed in Seoul early Friday 8/7. I was so distraught by Jon Stewart's last episode of The Daily Show on 8/6 so i decided that day just simply would not exist for me.)
Aug. 8, 2015
I love spending my birthday doing crazy things and this year was no exception: hiking the Great Wall of China... (FYI - I felt really lame posing for this picture but apparently you can't tell until I point that out.) Had a great hike and then came back to our hotel in Beijing to some lovely lilies that Mike had delivered for my bday <3
Aug. 9, 2015
Spent the day exploring the Forbidden City... then spent the evening at the Donghuamen Night Market, where we tried everything... including the scorpions! ekkkkk!!! photographic evidence that mike makes me try crazy things...
Aug. 10, 2015
Spent our last full day in Beijing seeing a few sights like tiananmen square, the temple of heaven, ducking in and out of fun shops in the hutong neighborhoods. To top it all off, we FINALLY tried the famous beijing peking duck. Easily one of the top 3 meals of the trip.
Aug. 11, 2015
Today we traveled from Beijing to Chengdu, the capital of the Sichuan province. Mike wanted to visit this area since it's his favorite type of Chinese food... hence the happy smile on his face after we arrived to the hotel and got our first delicious meal. Not before stopped at one of the many teahouses though for some soothing loose leaf tea.
Aug. 12, 2015
Started off visiting the Panda Research Center and seeing lots of pandas and their babies- too cute! Spent the rest of the day at spice markets and hanging out in the people's park, where we ran into a gathering of parents, each with a sheet about their kids that was lining the walkway, trying to set them up with other parents' kids. #nothanks
Aug. 13, 2015
Spent our last full day in Chengdu outside of the city. Started first with a nice hike up a mountain and visiting some temples (near the epicenter of the 2008 earthquake). From there we checked out a few charming towns in the area, had a few more delicious meals, and visited a local chile bean paste factory. So many flavors!
Aug. 14, 2015
Spent the day traveling from Chengdu to Lhasa, the capital of Tibet. Once we showed our permits to be in Tibet 20 times, we were greeted at the airport with white scarves, the official TIbetan welcome. Spent the rest of the day wandering the city near our hotel, wandering in and out of shops, and trying (unsuccessfully) to adjust to the altitude.
Aug. 15, 2015
Once we recovered from the previous night's altitude sickness, we started the day at the magnificent Potala Palace (the Dalai Lama's home before he fled to India in the 1950's). Spent the rest of the day visiting monasteries, sampling lots of local tibetan food, and learning about the culture and Tibetan perspective from our guide (Peterson).
Aug. 16, 2015
Enjoyed another beautiful day in Tibet. Spent a bunch of time in the biggest market in Tibet shopping around for fabrics and jewelry. Favorite item I found was (obviously) this jean jacket. After a few more monasteries we capped off the day with dinner and a traditional Tibetan music and dance performance. Great experience - beautiful culture.
Aug. 17, 2015
As we drove to the airport about to leave Tibet for our next adventure in Shanghai, I couldn't help but think about what a beautiful culture we had experienced and the awkwardness you felt with the Chinese government's presence being everywhere. Definitely somewhere I'd recommend to anyone going to this part of the world.
Aug. 18, 2015
Made it to Shanghai and enjoyed an incredible first day. Started with a 3 hr road trip to enjoy the West Lake and tea plantations in Hangzhou. After we got back to Shanghai we wandered our hotel's neighborhood (Yu Gardens) and ended up finding one of the best soup dumpling restaurants in Shanghai - def a highlight of the trip!
Aug. 19, 2015
Started our first full day in Shanghai with a bike tour of the city, which was easily one of the more "exciting" bike tours we've done due to the apparent lack of traffic laws. Stopped at a pet market, where i learned that crickets are a pet?!?! Gross. Ended up at the Bund for the evening walking along the river and enjoying the skyline at dusk.
Aug. 20, 2015
Our final day/picture in Shanghai (and China) was Chinese Valentine's Day (the 7th day in the 7th month after Chinese New Year). Spent the afternoon trying to see lots of parts of the city we hadn't seen on our bike tour and trying to order and pay for a meal in a local place where NO ONE spoke any English. Always an adventure!
Aug. 21, 2015
We managed to fit quite a bit in and really make the most of our 23 hours in Seoul... historical walking tour during the day and then a nighttime food tour. Tried some dubu (tofu), kimchi, Korean BBQ, North Korean pancakes, makgeolli (Korean rice wine), soju (distilled liquor similar to vodka), and green tea shaved ice. So delicious!!
Aug. 22, 2015
Back from our trip with lots of souvenirs. Had a great time and can't wait for the next one!

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