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Some travel advice please

 
Author chesham1
Partaker
#1 | Posted: 23 Aug 2009 09:17 
My wife and I are planning a holiday in Croatia in 2010 and I cannot work out whether to focus on Porec or Split etc? We are likely to go for Porec re accom but does anyone know how easy it is to get down to Split (bus?).

Author Solivagant
Partaker
#2 | Posted: 25 Aug 2009 07:11 
I haven't done it by bus but I self drove some years ago and the E65 road from Split through Sibenik up to Rijeka isn't that fast - and then you still have to get Porec- Rijeka which I don't know at all. Also there are a lot of great places on the route (Trogir, Sibenik, Zadar etc) so it deserves having some time taken over it.
This site says that just Split - Rijeka by bus is 8 hours which I can fully believe.
http://www.croatiatraveller.com/central%20dalmatia/Split/Buses.htm

I guess it all depends on what sort of holiday you want - if it is primarily sightseeing then I would have thought that the Split area must be used as the centre.

Author joycevs
Partaker
#3 | Posted: 27 Aug 2009 17:14 
There's a Highway (1) going to Split. It also passes by Plitvice National Parc. I would recommend the south much more than Porec

Author jsilvamaia
Partaker
#4 | Posted: 31 Aug 2009 19:00 
If time is not a problem for you, here is an alternative suggestion: takes ferries and have stops in some islands. Of course this also needs taking some busses between ports, which is time-consuming. But you will get a more country-in-depth understanding than through the road.
http://jsilvamaia.blogspot.com

Author quality townsville
Partaker
#5 | Posted: 1 Oct 2009 07:01 
I think there's croatia airline bus that goes and meet regular flights to Split.

quality townsville

Author Khuft
Partaker
#6 | Posted: 26 Oct 2013 12:20 
Travelling to China tomorrow - Beijing, Xi'an and Shanghai.
Any recommendations, aside of the well-known sites? Thx!

Author winterkjm
Partaker
#7 | Posted: 26 Oct 2013 16:42 | Edited by: winterkjm 
Bell and Drum Towers in Beijing are very much worth a visit. They are key elements in the Central Axis of Beijing nomination. Some of the best preserved Hutongs are nearby.

In Xi'an make sure to walk or bike around the Xi'an City Wall. Make sure to do a little research, there are 3-4 sites in or near to Xian that are part of the Silk Road nomination coming up in 2014.

Safe travels!

Author Solivagant
Partaker
#8 | Posted: 26 Oct 2013 16:56 | Edited by: Solivagant 
Re Shanghai - not WHS related but there is of course a lot more to China than WHS!
Be aware that the Maglev to/from the airport only travels at its fastest speed (430km per hour) between certain hours - the majority of the time it goes at the snail's pace of a mere 300!! You probably won't want to hang around if you are arriving by air at a "slow" time but if you have a choice or if you are doing the journey purely as a tourist from the centre return, having arrived by rail, it would be a shame to miss it. See the official web site for the fast/slow times.

Shanghai has a lot of competing "highest buildings" to go up - each of them built a bit further back from the river than the previous one! You probably won't want to pay to go up more than one - but it is well worth choosing one to get the view of Shanghai from up above. Some of our fellow visitors to Shanghai in Feb 2012 went up the Jin Mao. This is closer to the river than the taller World Financial Centre which we chose but we felt from experience and conversations that the latter's observation deck lifted us high enough to see over/past the Jin Mao (the views of which from "above" were also rather fine) and we were happy with the views we got of Shanghai - though the air clarity wasn't wonderful that day and may never be! I wouldn't bother about "record heights" - China is building so many super tall buildings that no record is going to be kept for very long and the financial Centre has already lost its "Highest observation deck" status (but still claims the highest "indoor" observation deck!)

Author bojboj
Partaker
#9 | Posted: 26 Oct 2013 19:18 
Welcome to Beijing! Quite cold here now, so keep warm. And ready face mask if you're sensitive to air pollution. :-)

Shanghai can easily connect you to Suzhou (for the gardens - only 30 mins by train); Hangzhou (West Lake - 1 to 1.5 hours); and Nanjing (city walls, a Ming tomb - also 1 to 1.5 hours by train). These are possible day trips for you.

Author Khuft
Partaker
#10 | Posted: 27 Oct 2013 09:35 
Many thanks to all!
Definitely planning to go to either Suzhou or Hangzhou, or maybe even both.

We're a few days in Beijing, so we'll fit the Bell & Drum towers in.

For Xi'an, we got the City Walls as well as Xi'an Mosque on the schedule, as well as Mount Hua Shan, which is one of the sacred mountains on the TL list.
With regards to the various ruins of Chang'an - can you recommend those? It seems to me that there is barely anything left...

Author bojboj
Partaker
#11 | Posted: 27 Oct 2013 19:29 
I haven't been to the Chang'an ruins, so I don't really know how they are.

Otherwise, you can also string in Luoyang (1.5 to 2 hours by train from Xi'an) to see the Longmen Caves and other Silk Road sites; and/or Zhengzhou (2 - 3 hours by train from Xi'an) to connect you to Dengfeng and the Shaolin Temple.

Author meltwaterfalls
Partaker
#12 | Posted: 28 Oct 2013 05:43 
I hope you are having a great time and this message isn't too late, I only have experience of Beijing but maybe this would be of us for a WHS spotter.

Aside from the obvious and those already recommended there is the outlying WHS of Peking Man, some details of getting there under your own steam can be found here. It isn't astounding so if you are short on time it is one to skip, but it is kind of fun just getting there, and it is an important site.

There is also the chance to get a look at the proposal being put forward next year, the terminus of the Grand Canal is only about 35 mins from central Beijing. Hop on Metro 1 (I think you technically have to change onto BT line but it is basically a continuation of line 1) and get off at Tongzhou Beiyuan. There are a few buses that then run along to the canal (including the 12 & 19 I think). It isn't the most wonderful sight in the world but you can see a potential new inscription and get off the Beijing Tourist trail for a bit. I think it took me about 3 hours for the round trip from Tienanmen Square, on the metro keep an eye out for the wonderful Ming era bridge at Baliqiao.

If you do go to the Drum and Bell towers I found some nice bars nearby and enjoyed an evening beer whilst watching the locals on the square mass ballroom dancing, it was very enjoyable.

Have fun.

Author Durian
Partaker
#13 | Posted: 29 Oct 2013 03:07 | Edited by: Durian 
Khuft:
ruins of Chang'an


I'm not sure which one you want to see, there are two Chang'an in Xi'an, Han Dynasty Chang'an and Tang Dynasty Chang'an. I did visited both sites, for Han Chang'an there is nothing much to see except some piles of earth in very dry forest, actually if you arrive Xi'an by plane, a shortest route used by many taxi is too drive thru Han Chang'an area, so most people see the site without knowing it! But for Tang Chang'an, you have to see the ruins of Da Ming Palace, not far from train station. The ruins is impressively big, but again nothing much from the old time.

Author Khuft
Partaker
#14 | Posted: 12 Nov 2013 15:28 
Well, am back from 2 weeks of China now - thanks again for all your tips!
As a quick recap of non-WHS sites we did:
- in Beijing, we did indeed do the Drum & Bell Towers, which I quite liked, as well as the hutong and bar area. An unexpected highlight was also the Residence of Prince Gong - a quite huge residence of a mighty aristocrat during the last spasms of the Qing dynasty. I can really recommend that - it's between the Forbidden City and the "normal" hutong in terms of size and luxury, and gives you a feel how the nobles lived. Also, its garden is actually nicer than the one of the Forbidden City.
- in Xi'an, a highlight was definitely the Mosque. It's built like a Chinese temple and doesn't look like a mosque at all - except of the Arabic script you can see everywhere. We gave up on Hua Shan, in the end, and went to the Han Yangling tomb (the tomb of the Western Han emperor Jingdi) - which I thought would be on the Silk Road list but after all seems not to be (but maybe it's included under "Han Chang'an"?). The basic idea is similar to the Qin Shi Huangdi mausoleum, but the terracotta statues are smaller and have no arms (those would have been made of wood). Also, there are little terracotta pigs, cows and sheep to serve as afterlife food.
- in Shanghai: we did get the "slow" maglev, but it was still a nice experience. In Pudong, we chose the Shanghai World Financial Center as well - for me a preferable choice because it allows to actually see the Jin Mao tower, which I think is architecturally superior. In any case, it's all being overshadowed (literally!) by the new Shanghai Tower, which is > 600 m tall and currently being finalised.
- we did Suzhou and Hangzhou too. I really liked the gardens in Suzhou - the Lion Forest garden was really fun; the Couple's Retreat garden one of the few gardens which had almost no tourists. On the way to the latter, Pingjiang canal and its houses have been restored and received some UNESCO accolade for it apparently. It's a nice area with bars and does give a feeling of how Venetian Suzhou must have been in the past.

Author meltwaterfalls
Partaker
#15 | Posted: 13 Nov 2013 06:10 
Khuft:
Residence of Prince Gong

Ah! It seems that was the large complex that I wandered around the perimeter wall of as I got lost heading from my guest house to Houhai Lake. Oh well a reason to return.

Glad you had a good trip.

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 Some travel advice please

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