I arrived in Dalian at about six a.m. The birds were chirping, the crickets were clicking, and there was a gentle breeze cutting through the warmth that was refreshing after Beijing. Aaaah!
It was also light. China has only one time zone despite spanning well across the Asian continent. It is hard though to please everyone and in North East China this means it is light at 4.30am and dark by 7pm!
I walked to the guest house enjoying the cool. A pair of ladies were out practicing tai chi in a “tourism-style street”, some street cleaners were out picking up rubbish and leaves, a few people were on walks… it felt lovely and relaxing.
Dalian is the perfect place for me to begin my journey to Russia… Nearby Lushun, formerly Port Arthur, on the bottom tip of the peninsula, has been occupied by the Japanese and separately by the Russians over the years – and fought over between them.
The Russians built old Dalian, and you can see their influence. They also built a railway from Vladivostok in Russia to Harbin in North East China and then down to Dalian, and used the major port here.
I also found a Japanese restaurant and an Alliance Francaise. You can feel history oozing on every leafy corner.
After buying a bus ticket out for the next day (read – an hour circling the bus station in ever decreasing and occasionally increasing circles), I headed for the point, Lushun, about an hour away by bus. Separate post.
The next day, I raced out to the beach then back for my bus. Dalian is one of “the” beach get aways for Beijingers and also for many Russians – many of the beach signs were in Russian as well as Mandarin. Check the photos, its popular!!
I gave my feet a ceremonial dip.