Beer or beaches? Hear the word Qingdao and the thought of one or the other will no doubt be the first that springs to mind. But Qingdao’s trump cards are not the only cards it holds. Regarded by many as one of China’s ...Read More »
Hong Kong may be lacking in some things - space, affordable housing, income equality and competition...
The good things in life don't always come easy. That's as true in the world of Cooked Food Centres a...
So here we are again, back with another quiz (if you can call it that). Another ten Chinese characte...
That’s entertainment! At first, there were just two guys holding a bunch of monkeys attached t...
On sticks or in a pot, in a bag or in the hand, Hong Kong street food is a curious mix of the tradit...
I’d walked down to the river as I’d done on my first night in Suzhou. Again there was the dancing, the kids on rollerblades, the breeze and general gaiety. I’d spent another day exploring the city, trying to figure it out ...Read More »
Suzhou bills itself as the “Venice of the East,” a moniker my guidebook had referred to as a “hackneyed … chat-up line” that I was unlikely to fall for. It is a town, it continues, that has “had to contend with destruction of its heritage and its replacement with largely arbitrary chunks of ...Read More »
I arrived in Suzhou after a little over an hour’s ride on the high-speed rail from Nanjing. The weather had cooled from the previous week’s mid-30s sweatfest. A light breeze was blowing as I sat overlooking a small square next to the Waicheng River in the south-west of the city ...Read More »
There are wartime tunnels all over Hong Kong. You wouldn't know it if you weren't looking, but I guess any tunnel worth the digging should strive to make itself at least a little tough to find. The Japanese were evidently pretty busy during their three years and eight months occupation of Hong Kong ...Read More »
Even for a cooked food centre, Tai Po Hui Cooked Food Centre is big. In fact, Tai Po is arguably the largest and busiest Hong Kong cooked food centre I've been to yet. Located above the wet market on the third floor of the huge Tai Po Hui Complex ...Read More »
It always surprises people when I mention the fact that the thing I love most about Hong Kong are the mountains and the hiking. "Hong Kong has mountains?" they say. To which I usually reply with something geeky like quoting the number of country parks and ...Read More »
Where to run in Hong Kong? It's a question that plagued my first few months in the city. When all around it seems that traffic, crowds and concrete have conspired to thwart your desire to run far and run free, Hong Kong can appear as far from a runner's paradise as you can get. In fact, it can seem the very opposite ...Read More »
It may come as a surprise to those unfamiliar with Hong Kong's less glamorous side, but the city isn't all shiny new skyscrapers and bustling humanity. In this city of constant renewal, where land is money and money is everything, not everything conforms to the development free-for-all that seems to be the status quo.Read More »
You'll not likely find it any of the guide books, but high above Tsuen Wan in Shing Mun Country Park, the remains of Hong Kong's first line of defence against the Japanese invasion during World War II, lie overgrown and unappreciated amongst the undergrowth. Constructed as part of the 13 miles of fortifications known as ...Read More »
It was supposed to be a festival of running, a celebration of individual achievement beneath the blue skies of Beijing. Instead, the 2014 Beijing Marathon made headlines around the world for very different reasons, demonstrating not the city's suitability as a place for staging international events, but one which is increasingly a city not fit for any habitable purpose.Read More »
I’d been to Chiang Mai once before, only a few months before. On that occasion, I’d left not knowing what all the fuss was about. Everybody I’d spoken to about the city had spoken of it as some kind mystical, mountain-ringed Xanadu, where every cliché about what life in Thailand for the soul-searching foreigner should be like rang true.Read More »
When Rupert Murdoch attended a dinner in Beijing in the late 1990s, he remarked that in all his visits to China, he had yet to meet a Communist. A strange remark indeed considering he was dining in by far the largest Communist state in the world ...Read More »
1986. Mao Zedong was ten years dead, the Tiananmen Square 'incident' was still three years away, and China was optimistic about the future. Only a few years before, the country had been all but inaccessible to foreigners. Still struggling with the trauma of the Cultural Revolution ...Read More »
With the 25th anniversary of the events of May and June 1989 just past, , and all the talk that went with it, it seems an appropriate time to take a look at an account of those momentous few weeks from the vantage point of someone who was actually there.Read More »