Off the beaten trail adventure to Xi’an

It has been over a month since I’ve written a blog post. There has been a too many adventures and not enough time to write.

Last month, Hayley and I had a weekend away to Xi’an, China to celebrate her birthday. It was an exciting weekend and we certainly did something that was off the beaten trail for most tourists. Apart from visiting the Terracotta Army, the city wall and the Muslim quarter, we stayed in a cave at the countryside.

Yes, you heard it right. We spent a few days staying in a cave and pretended to be a caveman and a cave-woman.

Our stay at the an Yaodong

Actually, caves (known as Yaodong 窰洞) are traditional dwellings in northern China, especially in the Shannxi Province. Many of these caves were dug out centuries ago and historical records show that these underground dwellings existed since the Bronze Age, which was over 4000 years ago.

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This was a cave that we stayed in. There was an outer quad-yard with where they had egg-laying hens  and a brown dog. There was also a inner quad-yard where we can chilled out and gazed at the stars in the evenings.

 

The particular cave we stayed at was located in an small village about 30 minutes drive from the Terracotta Army and was in a beautiful setting. The owner turned it into a nice B&B. We were told that this cave had been in the family for many generations and she grew up living with her parents and grandparents.

 

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Hayley tried to keep herself warm by putting a panda hat and an communist army jacket on. She turned into a communist panda whilst chilling at the quad-yard. It’s China, what do you expect?

 

The owner at the cave was very hospitable. She was really chatty and cooked really yummy food, such as stream bread, vegetable stir-fry and home-made noodles.

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Yummy home cooked food. They were very delicious

 

Home-made noodles and the cave

Wandering around in the countryside

Apart of the yummy food. We also had a chance to explore the local village and the surrounding areas.

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Picture of the local village. It was still fairly common for people to live in these caves, but increasingly the villagers were building brick houses near the cave as their new homes.

 

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Another type of cave with a layer of bricks outside to make the entrance looks nice. It almost looked like a city wall stuck onto a hillside.

 

We came across a local park and a resort area that was half built. The entire park and the resort area was accessible to the public. In theory, one can gain access to part of park where heavy construction lorries, bulldozers were working on, which of course was not safe at all. So, we didn’t enter that part of the park.

According to the villagers, the local government was building this resort to attract tourist who would be visiting the Terracotta Army. This area in a few years time will supposedly be link to the Terracotta Army with a massive motorway, which will change everything in the local area. We were glad to have visited the village before it turned into a tourist hot spot.

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Cherry blossom trees in a local park.
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We came across this mysterious ‘cave’ in the local park with a warning sign saying not to enter. As self-respected adventurers we enter the cave a found a massive empty metal tank with pipe fittings. Was it some sort of military installation? Who knows.

 

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The half-built six lane motorway. The roadway was properly surface and usable, until you get to the end of the road. No road signs warning the drivers the road came to an abrupt stop. No sign of builders working. Maybe they just ran out of money. We saw drivers made emergency stops before the road ended and turned round. We saw one driver braved it and drove over the  unpaved slip road and continued down the country lanes.

 

  • Where did we stay: Bed in a Cave in Xi’an, China
  • How to get there: Taxi, public transport was not really an option. Make sure you have the phone number of the owner, because it was really difficult to find. Even the driver was somehow lost!

 

Did you recently have a weekend away? Have you stayed in a cave before? What was your experience? Comment below

 

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5 Comments Add yours

  1. This really looks so cool! You do so many off the norm-trips, I really envy you. (But I would probably die inside if I had to stay in a cave for a night.)

    Liked by 2 people

    1. yhpchung says:

      Haha, I also get jealous when people do some awesome trips and post them on facebook or something. That includes your recent blog post about the Austrian Easter and the meat blessing ceremony. I would love to exprience that.

      As for the cave, I promise there aren’t any bears or any cripie crawlies that will come and bite you. They have probably all eaten by the locals. :p

      On a serious note, the cave was done up nicely inside and you even get an electric blanket and a comfy mattress.

      Like

      1. It’s not about cripie crawlies but more because of the echoes of Mr. Panda’s snoring. >_<

        Liked by 2 people

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