Thursday, April 27, 2017
Finally we arrived in Hangzhou after one and half hour train ride from Nanjing. Everything was so easy, just followed the signs (both in Mandarin and English). We can take the metro from Hangzhou East Railway Station to our hotel. But the weather was so strange, when we arrived in Nanjing on Day 1, it was around 19 degrees and everyday the temperature was lower and lower. In Hangzhou, the temperature drops further around 14 degrees and was raining. It was difficult to drag our luggage in the rain, from metro station to our hotel no matter how near. The metro station to our hotel was a mere 5 or 7 minutes walk (need cross 2 small roads). Too cold to walk in the open too. So taxi was our choice, we walked to the taxi stand, saw a long queue but there were many taxis and the queue moved very fast. I showed the driver the paper where I printed the hotel name and address. So there's no problem with the communication. The taxi fare from Hangzhou East Railway Station to our hotel in Pinghai Road was RMB45 (there's a slight traffic jam). Our hotel in Pinghai Road, can be access via the metro. The metro station is Longxiangqiao Station. Exit D and turn left and walked along Pinghai Road, will be able to see the hotel. The wonderful thing about Exit D of Longxiangqiao was there's a food court in that exit (will talked more in later post). Huachen Hotel is a bit dated hotel but since gone through some renovations. Quite cozy and comfortable, every night I slept so soundly. We booked our hotel throught Agoda.com, cheaper than booked direct with the hotel. It did not comes with breakfast. On enquiring, the staff told us if we booked the breakfast one day in advance will be RMB58 (S$11+) per person instead of RMB78. Since the weather was so cold, make sense to take the breakfast in the hotel and it was not expensive. So we decided to buy the breakfast vouchers for the three mornings that we were there. The beds were cozy and room very clean. All things in the basket are chargeable except for the free mineral water. Everyday there's will be 2 bottles of free mineral water. I prefer shower in the bathroom instead of bathtub cause both of us are old and safer to use shower room instead of climbing into the bathtub. Toiletriies in the pouch bag are free to use, the others wrapped in plastic are chargeable. No air conditioning in the room as weather is still very cold, open the window for natural air conditioning. But best get a room away from the road, at times, it can be noisy but at night, all's quiet.
Wednesday, April 26, 2017
Day4 - Nanjing/Hangzhou Trip 2017 - Travelling from Nanjing South Railway Station to Hangzhou East Railway Station
Today, we will leave Nanjing for Hangzhou. We will be taking the CHR Train from Nanjing South Railway Station to Hangzhou East Railway Station. Please refer my previous post on how to purchase the train ticket. We took the metro train (RMB2) from Xinjiekou to Nanjing South Railway Station (30 mins). We headed to the south gate, guess is non public holiday or weekend, going through immigration was a breeze, no long queue. As it the journey would take about one and half hour, we decided to have lunch in the railway station. No problem finding food in the station. We had lunch at a Chinese fast food chain called Kung Fu Fast Food Restaurant, our lunch was about RMB70+ (cant really remember the exact amount). Viewed the big screen for the train number and departure time to look for the gate number to check in and also the platform number. Enter only when the designated train number turned green and head for the platform. On the train ticket, the car number is indicated so walked to the platform and looked on the floor of the platform, the car number is printed on the floor, queue at the designated car number. There's not space to place huge luggages, best to have smaller luggages to placed on the overhead compartment. The food cart goes up and down the aisle so no luggages allowed to be placed in the aisle. Not all the end of each cabin(car) has luggage rack for large luggages. The train seat was very spacious, a very comfortable ride. Food cart goes up and down the aisle selling food and drinks. Video of trip from Nanjing South Railway Station to Hangzhou East Railway Station.
Monday, April 24, 2017
Our last night in Nanjing, we had dinner at the same chinese economical shop opposite our hotel. As we were earlier than the first day, there's more dishes to choose from. Our dinner was less than S$10. Decided to head to Hunan Road (Hunan lu), took the metro and alight at Xuanwu Gate Station (RMB2). From the map, Huan Road is just one street from Hotel Phoenix. There's a lot of construction along the road. (Construction work for new Metro line.) Found nothing interesting in this pedestrial shopping street, not worth coming here, we decided head back to Xinjiekou for last minute shopping in Nanjing. Back at Xinjiekou, just watching the people going by their business, was also a good idea to spend the night. The weather was getting colder when we were there, temperature drops to 14 degrees, even the dogs need winter coat.
Sunday, April 23, 2017
After visiting the Ming Tomb, we had to walk about less than a minute to another tram station, (the tram station infront of the ming tomb go to the Linggu Temple), but we wanted to visit Sun Yat Sen Memorial, if unsure which tram station to take, ask the staff. We bought the tram tickets to Sun Yat Sen Memorial, the tram ticket is RMB10 per person. It was about a minute away from each attraction but need 30 minutes if by foot. We arrived at the other tram station outside Sun Yat Sen Memorial. As the mausoleum of Dr. Sun Yat-sen, the father of the Republic of China, it is considered the Holy land of Chinese people both home and abroad. With deep historical significance, magnificent architecture and beautiful scenery, it is a must see when visiting Nanjing. To read more about the history, read from source. To reach the top of the mausoleum, we need to climb more than 300 steps. View from the top. Entering the Hall, a 4.6-meter-high stone statue of Dr. Sun Yat-sen sits in the center. He wears long gown with eyes facing forward, with an open book on his lap, demonstrating the wisdom of the great thinker. At the foot of the statue, there are six embossments exhibiting in vivid pictures Dr. Sun Yat-sen's glorious life and struggles in his revolution. The door of the tomb is in the center of the back wall. The whole tomb is a hemispherical in shape, with the marble coffin of Dr. Sun Yat-sen set in the center of the chamber. His white marble statue rests atop the rectangle coffin, under which this historical giant forever sleeps. (Source: TravelChinaGuide.) Photography is not allowed inside the hall. We were also not allowed into the chamber. After visiting, we climbed back down, we decided to try taking the public bus instead of the tram to the metro station after seeing the signboard that indicated public bus. It was about more than 10 minutes walk to the big car park where the bus stop was. We also had lunch at Macdonald near the big car park and bus stop. There's a lot of restaurants and eateries around there. Bus 34 or Bus 201 will goes down to the Xiamafang Metro Station for RMB2. After alighting Bus 201, we saw the bus stop that indicated Bus 34 goes to Xinjiekou. Oh dear, we should have taken Bus 34 all the way back to Xinjiekou instead of taking Bus 201 and change to the metro hahaha. There's tram near the metro station to bring visitors up to the attractions.