Marie Duranceau, with her husband Evan, took a trip to China, and she shared the trip with a slide presentation and talk to members of the Wentworth United Church Women.
Duranceau sent me a report, as well, entitled ‘Our amazing trip to China,’ a portion of which I now enclose:
“Day 1. We flew by airplane from Montreal to Chicago where we caught the 12-hour flight to China. When we were about to leave the Beijing airport terminal, our tour guide was there waiting for us with the welcoming sign. We went to the Loong Palace Hotel to dine and rest.
Day 2. We visited Tienanmen Square, walked around the Pedestrian Plaza, and saw the site of the National Museum and Mao Zedong’s Mausoleum. We entered the Imperial Red Wall of the Forbidden City, the Emperor’s Palace (off limits to commoners for centuries). We visited the Temple of Heaven where the Emperor could humble himself in prayer to guarantee the realm’s good and plentiful harvest
Day 3. We enjoyed our excursion to the ancient Great Wall which was built over 20 dynasties as a military fortification and runs thousands of kilometres across China. The Great Wall never achieved its purpose. Next was a four-hour tour of Beijing with spectacular light shows. We visited the site of China’s 2008 Olympics.
Day 4. We went to the airport for the flight to Chongqing where we were to visit the zoo that has pandas, but we arrived too late to enter and went directly to board the ship for a four-day River Cruise.
Days 5-8.We entered smaller boats to have a closer look at the Three Gorges, which contained beautiful views of canyons and mountains. We saw the Precious Stone Fortress on a hill along the banks of the Yangtze River providing a walkway to the Temple on top of the hill. We saw the Three Gorge’s Dam, the world’s largest hydroelectricity project, and the 5-Stage Ship Lock, a most impressive sight. The Captain’s Farewell Dinner ended this wonderful River Cruise.
Day 9. We disembarked the ship at Guangzhou, a city located on the banks of the Yangtze River. This city has 6,000 years of history that gave birth to the culture of “Chu,” and during a tour of this city we had another dazzling display of its lights. We were taken back to Wuhan to rest up at the Loong Palace Hotel.
Day 10. We went to Shanghai by the High Speed Train which can reach speeds of 394 kilometers an hour. We had leisure time at a hotel and after dining had a night tour of the city.
Day 11. We visited the Shanghai Museum, shopped at the boutiques, and went to the waterfront area in central Shanghai where we experienced a most exciting acrobatic show.
Day 12. We went to the airport for our flight home.
Final comment: We visited Beijing, Chongqing, Yangtze River, Three Gorges, Guangzhou, Wuhan, and Shanghai. We also did side trips planned by our guide: a jade factory, a pearl factory, a silk-making factory, and a Tea Ceremony. It was a busy time-filled vacation and the only spare time we had was on the bus going from one event to another. We were a great bunch on our bus, enjoyed talking to one another, joking and laughing together. All in all, it was a trip to remember and the many friends we had met.”
As Duranceau finished her slide presentation and talk, we felt that we had been on the trip with her, even though we were still seated on our chairs at the Wentworth Church downstairs hall.