Sanxia Hotel

No.1 Shanxi Road, Yuzhong District, Chongqing, Chongqing Region, 400011, China
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Travel Tips for Chongqing

Climb to the top of Shi Bao...

by FreeCloud

Climb to the top of Shi Bao Zhai Temple to have a view of Yangtze River and Shi Bao Zhai Town and other villages around, like a piece of traditional Chinese scenery painting, through the temple's round windows.

Chongqing

by RB_Oakes

"A Brief Stay in Chongqing"

I put my faith in the hostel's travel agency. It's odd because the whole arrangement feels like a tour, but it's just for me. I give them my money and somehow it finds its way to the various people along the route and voila! Every door is opened and someone is standing there to show me the way. It feels like cheating, actually.

I booked Chengdu to Wuhan, the whole enchilada, in one shot. I can't say things like "the whole enchilada" here because it just confuses people. Same thing with sarcasm.

This was the big splurge for me - the Three Gorges Tour. A quick bit of background, the Three Gorges are along the Yangtze (Chang Jiang) River. The Chinese government is building the world's largest dam, The Three Gorges Dam, along the river and this will result in flooding that will greatly diminish the gorges. They have in fact already done phase one of the flooding earlier this year. To see the gorges at all, one must do this before 2009, so I decided to make this a priority on this trip.

I woke up in Chengdu, had a cup of tea and took a bus down the freeway through the lushest farmland I've ever seen to Chongqing. We stopped twice for rest breaks in five hours. Like I said before, the Chinese are terrible at long-distance travel.

After dropping my bags at the ticket office, I had five hours ot explore Chongqing. The city, formerly known as Chungking, was the wartime capital of the Kuomintang. Their supporters packed what was up until that point a small backwater. The land itself is not condusive to supporting a huge population, as the city is built on a small, hilly peninsula at the confluence of the Chang Jiang and Jialing Jiang rivers. Thus, Chongqing has for the past sixty years been forced to grow upward.

With irregularly clustered buildings, skyscrapers as far as the eye can see, and an amazing cohabitation of gleaming towers, run-down tenements and old Sichuan-style houses, the city has a one-of-a-kind look. Across either river, the shoreline yields tall crops of glass and concrete. Overall, the city has a New York or Hong Kong kind of feel.

This density, and the diversity of architecture, shrouded in mist and rain, gifted with teeming streets of food vendors, shoppers, itinerant salespeople of all types lends the city tremendous life. It is the Montreal to Chengdu's Toronto.

Chongqing, population-wise, is only half the size of Chengdu, but it is the teeming, funky, flavourful Sichuanese city I'd hoped the latter would be (and wasn't). I wish I'd had more time to spend.

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