…and the Great Wall.
One thing that is a MUST when you come to China is to see the GREAT WALL! David & I have been to many sections of this amazing wall. You know it’s not all one connecting wall right? And no it can’t be seen from space.
We wanted to provide opportunity for David’s boss Ron to see this. Since a stopover in Beijing where most of the famous wall sections are located wasn’t going to work, we decided that on our final weekend here we would take a VERY FAST train ride to nearby Dandong city. It is a 3.5 hour car ride which ends up being longer or a quick 1 hour train ride! We chose the train so he could experience traveling on a high speed train too!
Dandong is the largest Chinese border city, Facing North Korea across the Yalu River which demarcates the Sino-North Korean border. Dandong has had a dynamic history because of its strategic location for the northeast’s rich natural resources and because of its convenient access to the ocean. It is designated as a major export production centre for the province, and is a port city connected by rail with Shenyang and Sinuiju. A significant amount of trade with North Korea flows through the city.
First stop in Dandong, the GREAT wall at Hushan. Hushan Great Wall lies near the Yalu River in Dandong City of Liaoning Province, and faces North Korea across the river. It crawls on the Hushan Mountain which literally means “Tiger Mountain”, so named because the two towering peaks resemble two tiger ears pricking up into the sky when seen from afar. The Hushan Great Wall was built to strengthen the frontier defense in 1469 during the Ming Dynasty (1368-1644), and is the eastern most point of the huge military defensive system.
After the wall we headed back to Dandong city. The Sino-Korean Friendship Bridge, a railway bridge connecting Dandong with Sinuiju is the big attraction to see along the waterfront. The differences between the Chinese and North Korean sides are immense: Dandong is brightly lit, glitzy and filled with people. Construction equipment and modern cars are everywhere, hospitals and train stations are at the expected Chinese levels. Sinuiju, on the other hand, goes completely dark at night, looks run-down and if you ever do see construction activity it’s going to be manual labor with even basic tools seemingly in short supply. Border guard activities are similarly different: While on the North Korean side a lone soldier with an AK47 can be seen shivering in the cold in regular intervals, the Chinese side instead uses FLIR-like camera systems on large poles to keep an overview of activities along the river.
And just one more thing…
When in Dandong, many foreigners want to try what the locals call the “sweet meat”. Well, it’s not sweet, and this will be my third experience, But for Ron…we once again had DOG. It is a dish that is served in the Chinese Korean Restaurants.
Yes… stewed dog.
Ron has had many experiences and tasted many kinds of food this week!
Next…An afternoon coffee to warm up ( and erase the taste of lunch lol) and then to the train station to head back to Shenyang.
It’s been quite a FULL day!!! But I love the adventure .
Tonight we arrived back in Shenyang and just stayed in and relaxed for dinner. David ordered room service.