An unforgettable trip to China

Published November 1st, 2011

Student Flight’s Todd Ellem travels to China. Todd begins his journey in Shanghai where he visits the Jade Buddha Temple and the Oriental Pearl TV Tower. Todd then visits Suzhou, Guilin, and Yanshuo before taking a cruise down the Yu Long River. Todd, tells us about his unforgettable trip to China.


China - YangshuoWe started off our journey in the duty free shopping area of the Brisbane International Airport. We were flying to Shanghai with Royal Brunei Airlines with a one night stopover in Brunei. Brunei and its airline are dry, which means the sale of alcohol is prohibited. However, the airline permits you to bring alcohol onto their planes and will serve it to you until you arrive in Brunei. You then have to sadly leave all unfinished liquid gold on the plane.



Brunei Airlines are an amazing airline. Great food and up to date personal entertainment systems to keep you occupied on your flight. The seats are spacious and the airline continually has very competitive prices.



First stop Shanghai. Shanghai is a very modern city, China's financial hub. Shanghai looks like a European city in a Chinese setting. A stroll along the famous Shanghai Bund confirms this. Highlights for me were the Jade Buddha Temple and the Oriental Pearl TV Tower which is a 468 m high tower with a glass viewing platform.



Now off to the Venice of the east, Suzhou. This area has intricate canal systems and you can take gondola rides while the Gondoliers belting out the latest Chinese love songs. This town was one of my favourites. You could pick up a bargain shopping in this place and the sweet and sour fish is amazing.



Another highlight was Guilin and Yanshuo. This area is similar to Halong Bay in Vietnam which is renowned for its limestone mountain scenery. Well, the Chinese call it little Halong Bay. We took a river cruise along the Yu Long River. We could have gone swimming or tubing. Watching the local fisherman use their trained cormorants to catch their dinner was a sight. There were many other cities and towns such as Nanjing, Hangzhou and Longsheng which included rice fields, green tea plantations, snake wine and fire water, that are a must see and do.



On the Go Tours were amazing. We stayed in very central boutique hotels at a four star rating or higher. I can't rave enough about the knowledge and friendliness of our local tour guides. I've done my fair share of independent traveling; however, I was very happy to be on a tour in China as you could find it very hard navigating train/bus terminals and around town with the language barrier. This combined with dumplings for breakfast, lunch and dinner made my holiday such an amazing experience that I won’t forget.



Looking for more information about travelling to China? Contact [email]text=Todd Ellem[/email], an International Travel Consultant with Student Flights based in Brisbane’s West End, Queensland who can be reached at 1300 839 675 or by [email]text=email[/email].