China Trip – Day 11

Xian: A very full day seeing: Xingqing Park, Lacquer furniture shop, lunch at a university restaurant, Terracotta warriors gallery, the archaeological site of the Terracotta Warriors, City wall, and dinner with dance performance by the Tang Dynasty Troupe. Weather: Sunny with it being 41* in AM & 70* in PM

We get up at 6:00 AM, this is becoming my new norm. Again have a fantastic huge buffet breakfast. We meet Frank and Ivy at 7:30. We get on a bus and go to Xingqing Park, which had a lot of interactive things to do. I enjoyed it very much.

Entrance to Xingqing Park
Local people doing morning exercises. They invited us to join them, which I did.
We next meet a group doing a fan dance and we have fun joining them also.
Me with the local dancers and Frank our guide.
Rick with one of the local dancers.
A group picture of our group and the local dancers.
I was having fun, Rick was taking pictures.
We join another exercise group. Ivy our guide in center with green jacket.
We continue on and listen to a local band playing music. They play Christmas carols for us!
We continue walking through the park, very pretty with the trees starting to bloom.
An up close of blossoms.
Yours truly, taking time to enjoy the small things.
Enjoying the sights of spring.
On our way out we are stopped by this interesting 91 year old Chinese man that wanted to talk to us.
Also saw this lady writing in Chinese characters on the sidewalk. Don’t know what it says.

We are back on the bus headed to a Lacquer furniture shop. On the way we pass the City Wall. It surrounds the city for a total of eight miles. It is the only original complete wall around a city that remains in China. We also see the Bell Tower.

Part of the City Wall.
More of the City Wall.
The Bell Tower.
The City Wall
Some of the furniture in the lacquer shop.
Lacquer furniture shop

We next are headed to the Terracotta Gallery where they show and explain the making of the warriors.

Man making small terracotta warriors.
The making of the warriors from individual molds.
Small Terracotta Warriors. We buy two, plus a set of four and a horse. Plus a painted plate of Chinese scene done in blue.
Large warriors that can be bought.
These warriors were seen on the way out!

From the gallery we headed to lunch on a university campus with a nice lunch beside a koi pond.

Relaxing site for lunch.
Koi in pond.

We are now headed on to the actual archaeological site of the Terracotta Warriors – life-size soldiers, horses and chariots that were entombed with China’s first emperor, Qin She Huang. On the way we pass a carved monument representing the warriors.

Monument of warriors and horses in city.
Carved monument of warriors.

Then on to the actual site where a farmer discovered the first warrior head while digging a well. We bought a book with his autograph. He is now 86 years old and no longer goes to the museum. We spend 3 hours looking at the pits and the original warriors. The first Pit has 6,000 warriors with 2,000 restored at this time. They originally were in color but as soon as they are dug up they oxidize and lose their color.

The museum – Pit 1, 2, & 3
The first of the ‘Pits’.
It is hard to show the massive area in pictures.
Rick overlooking Pit 1.
Showing some restored in front of how the pieces are found.
Two restored warriors next to uncovered pieces in the next aisle.
Digging out ruins.
Some restored warriors and horses.
Showing some of the faces. So far there are no two warriors that are the same!
Pit 2 & 3 are warriors and horses in the process of being restored (pieces being put together).
Showing how pieces are collected in boxes and slowly sorted and put together.
After assembled they are put up in the exact site where they were found.
The exact site where the first warrior head was found when digging a well. It is the soldier that is ‘headless’!
Showing the first discovered warrior (one in front row without a head).

On the way out of the ‘Pits’ we see special warriors that are encased in show cases. The archer being the only warrior found complete in the entire area.

Then it is to the building that houses the chariots.

Chariots behind enclosed glass and thus hard to get good clear pictures.

This is an amazing site and photos don’t do it justice. Very lucky and glad we had the opportunity to see it all in person.

We make it back on the bus to the hotel by 5:15, change to nicer clothes and back on the bus by 5:45 to go to dinner and the dance performance by the Tang Dynasty Troupe. It is an hour long dance depicting the only female Empress’ life.

Some of dinner.
Prior to dinner, Chinese music played on different instruments.
Pictures from the dance production:
The ending scene.

But that is not the end of the day yet. We get on the bus and see the night city lights and the city wall lite up.

The City Wall lite up.
The Bell Tower in lights.

We get to the hotel at 9:30 and have to pack our luggage and have it out to go to the airport by 10:30 PM. We have to leave the hotel by 6:30 AM. It has been a very long day but an extremely interesting and informative day!