Back in travelogue mode for the time being – even if rather after the event – mainly for my own records.
We stayed a bit more upmarket while with the family, partly to have more room and partly just because a bit of luxury would be nice while travelling with kids. In Xi'an we stayed at the Citadines apartment hotel. Just a couple of hundred metres round the corner from the airport bus stop and south of the Drum Tower, it was great. In fact we had the corner apartment and looking down the road from our window we could see the corner of said tower. Drum and Bell Towers, square, muslim quarter, south city gate and nearby museums and markets were all within easy walking distance.
I love Xi’an. The city centre is compact and easy to get around and see things. We visited the Bell and Drum Towers, enjoyed the drum performance but missed the bells. The square in between was good for the kids to run around. It was Anna’s birthday while we were there so we had a dumpling banquet lunch and a take away dinner followed by birthday cake in the apartment. (Won’t mention who threw up in the night – maybe a bit much for one day). We wandered through the muslim market area, took a ride in a "golf cart" around the top of the city wall, visited the steles museum – even found a Haagen Daas.
It was my second visit to the terracotta warriors and I loved seeing them again.
The unearthing of 110 new soldiers (some with colour still preserved), 12 horses, parts of chariots, weapons and tools has been featured on the TV news here recently. The scale of the construction is breathtaking and the conviction behind the undertaking is quite mind-blowing. I think in another life I’d be an archaeologist