Wednesday, 15 July 2009

Beijing (Part 4)

Ok I promise this is the last of my rambling on the Beijing trip. Heck, it took me longer time to upload stories about the trip than the trip itself!

On the second last day we were there, everybody's pretty much sick of going to those mandatory places, and jut itchy to do our own shopping. I heard so much abou the fun that is shopping at the Yashiow Market that I kept pestering our tour guide to hurry up and take us there.

But well, we spent the first part of the day going to the Olympic complex. Too bad we couldn't spend more time there, or even to come nearer. So it's the Bird's Nest Stadium from afar for us on that day. So is the Water Cube Stadium.

Just a 'lil family pose;)

This is the closest I could get to getting a decent and nice picture of the Bird's Nest Stadium:(..Would've loved to go nearer or even inside, but that'd mean additional fee.

So anyway after that we were taken to yet another shop nearby the Olympic Complex, purpotedly owned by a Malaysian consortium, specialising in gems and jewellery. I was quite irritated by that point, and it showed. Didn't really feel like layan whatever they were trying to sell us, but in the end, each of us walked out with a jade pendant:)..

After lunch and Zohor prayer, it's finally off to free shopping. Sorry no photo. It was hot, and packed and due to some foreseeable-problem-that-could've-been-prevented, I didn't feel like taking any photos.

But suffice to say Yashiow Market was not really as enjoyable as I had anticipated. As we were there in the afternoon, the market was jam-packed with tourists, and me and crowded places isn't exactly a love affair, so I couldn't really concentrate on looking at each item or have time to haggle.Our time there was also limited, so that's another thing pressing me at that time. The salesgirls there were also not as accommodating as I thought, and the worst thing is that once you've touched their item they'd force you to buy. In most cases one may have to resort to being rude just to be off their hook. But at least I knew what I wanted to look for, and that would be a winter jacket. I got one, a D&G knee-length winter jacket. Of course the original price they quoted was sky-high, but I asked for 150yuan only. Played all the usual haggling tricks in the book, and I got that price (although I would've loved getting it for 100yuan). But still, it's an RM75 jacket that otherwise would cost me hundreds of ringgit had I buy it here:). I also bought a blouse and pants set, a table runner and some silk pouch as souvenirs for friends.

After that we were off to Yangqiow Silk Market. Unexpectedly I prefer going around there, although as my money ran out, I could only look at them. They had better choice of items as the products were decently assigned on different levels. We were also there when it was quieter, so you could enjoy walking around and have a look at things. But one thing marred my experience there though. I wanted to buy this embroidered bed sheet set that I managed to get for 300 yuan. As I didn't have much cash left, I wanted them to charge my credit card. So they took it to their sister shop upstairs, and I asked them to check whether I can use my credit card there (I wasn't sure if I had to activate it for overseas use, you see) and they keyed-in the figure, we waited for a while only to tell me that the transaction failed through. So Ok I thought dah takde rezeki nak beli this set la.

But when I got my card statement 3 weeks ago, they actually DID charge me:((...Hey RM156 tu bukannya sikit tau...So now I'm trying to have this problem fixed with RHB.

So anyway, after that we left for hotel and it was the last night in Beijing. The next day, we were supposed to go to Russian Market and such but all of us decided to skip it to rest, pack our stuff so we could have ample time to travel to the airport.

We checked out at around 11, and another thing happened to spoiled our otherwise enjoyable Beijing trip. The hotel charged us for the items we never consumed. they claimed we drank the drinks in those little fridge, and the b*&*^y receptionist insisted we pay. Our guide argued our case with her but she wouldn't let go. Finally I said fine, paid the 20 yuan she wanted and we left. But not before my Dad gave her a piece of his mind.

So if anyone is reading this, if you happen to go to Beijing, DO NOT STAY AT LING DONG HUA HOTEL!!! I'm just launching my personal boycott on this hotel ok. Actually there were many other undesirable incidents involving Malaysian tourists staying there, so I think the boycott's justified.

This is where we had our final meal in Beijing. Sorry the name of the restaurant's rather far, and I could not recall its name either. That's just me and Mum posing when leaving the place;). So by then it's sayonara to Beijing.

Here are some photos of the buildings there I took while on the way to the airport.

We reached the Beijing Capital Airport at around 2 in the afternoon, which is perfect. Just in time to check in for our 4.25PM flight back to KL.

The airport is big and nice, very modern. Not sure if it's clear enough here but just when we were getting there I saw a plane taking off:)

And while our guide was busy checking us in, sempat lagi bergambar:)

The last photo was of my tour group and our tour guide, Ah Ming. Thanks Ah Ming for a nice and enjoyable time in Beijing:)

The trip was a very nice experience. I would love to go there again, and of course, this time bring more cash there:), and skip those places I don't want to be at in the first place. I definitely would love to climb the Great Wall again, this time visit the Temple of Heaven as well, maybe try skiing which means a winter trip,go see and hold the panda and explore parts of Beijing I didn't get to see while I was there.

Next destination? Jakarta and Bandung in November!

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