LuoYang lies to the South-West of Beijing in Henan Province. Basicly it is an industrial-agricultural city on the Lo River and in the middle of the Fertile Yellow River lands. In May the City and Province of Henan
As mentioned around this website, LuoYang is also known in China as the Home City of the fragrant and colorful peony flower. This is DrBen in the Peony fields of the Divine Land Gardens in LuoYang.
The Marco Polo Bridge and the National Memorial of the War of Resistance against Japan at Lukou Qiao, although far from the City Center are two interesting places to visit, especially if you are a buff for recent Chinese History and or the Revolution.
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Ben- 7Th Time in China Foto's:
Taken on my 7Th China visit from April 22 through June 16th , 2006
in Beijing and in LuoYang, henan Province.
As I sort of instinctively expected, Caroline turned out to be a small Lady ...
Climb Jingshan all the way to the Wanchun Pavilion at the Top. From there one has a clear 360 degrees look-out over The Palace and surrounding Inner City of Beijing.
The Climb turns out to be quite a work-out, however not as disastrous as some parts of the Great Wall of China near Beijing. The rewards, the view, as mentioned are more than worth your while.
The Years 2006 China Adventures started amid white clouds of incense in the Xuanwu District of Beijing ...
Dr.Ben waving incense in Prayers at the Monastery of the White Clouds in Western Beijing.
Beijing has many Temples which we are still in process of documenting, however, the Taoist BaiYun Guan on the Xuanwu-Fengtai Border, as one of the first temples visited and Photographed by Dr.Ben, holds a special place in his Heart. 2006 saw a new visit, accompanying Caroline Wang who made this photo.There were more prayers made than photos, but it was once again an interesting cultural experience !
It seems our prayers to the Taoist God of Money ensured a reasonable financial success in the year 2007 !
Naturally, the LongMen Caves in LuoYang were THE most important reason for our visit. The Longmen Caves are sort of the sequel to the Yungang Caves at Datong. In this way Dr.Ben and the China Report silently started off on explorations the Silk Road.
The Jingshan Park of Beijing turns into a fragrant peony garden by the Time of April and May, making this the Best Time for Photography, but also for simply enjoying the Park and Gardens ! If it weren't for the crowds ...
Many visitors flock to Jingshan making may the busiest time of the year in the Park.
This Page holds a small collection of pictures of Myself on tour in China in the year 2006. This was my 7Th Tour in China so far, and for a while it would be even the Last.
As our main City to Report on in preperation for the 2008 Olympics and as the Location of our Bai Shu Hutong Head Quarters (near Wanfujing Cathedral), destination for Spring of 2006 was mainly Beijing and little else. The trip made to LuoYang was only a short one, intended to make a first scouting of the City and prepare for a longer tour of the LuoYang, Henan and South Shanxi Region in the Future.
Hence, the spring of 2006 in Beijing was a Time of exploits in the Book & DVD Publishing Business, hard work exploring the huge city of Beijing and keeping ahead of its rapid changes and on the other hand ... of good times in Beijing together with Caroline.
This First Photo was taken after the 2 of us visited a nearby Publishing House to add to our China Online Store Collection. Afterwards we combined business with some pleasure by fist visiting nearby Monastery of White Clouds, engaging in prayers and burnings and then going for a try of Hunan Styled Kitchen at a nearby Mao Zedong Restaurant.
Yes,it was still cold when Dr.Ben arrived in the City of Beijing right after his April Birthday, but it did not matter a lot .The Beijing weather was still grey and surprisingly, evenings in the centrally heated Bai Shu Hutong home & HQ were bitterly cold. But Times together were warm and rather kozy ...
Helped by my Latest Camera, the DSC-F828 this was another sucesful Photo Tour of Beijing. Colorful Greenery and Flowers abounded everywhere,
Basicly I forgot because I stayed away from China some Time after that, and beside - for 2007 I went even further and got the new Sony 12.2 megapixels Camera.
In 2006 Caroline and I visited Jingshan, The Palace Museum, Marco Polo Bridge, Tiantan Park and a number of other Places in and around Beijing. In between we handled some book + DVD publishing Business and yes, go to know eachother better !
It is a pitty this Page is not about Caroline's adventures with Dr.Ben otherwise i could show some of her Photos.
Actually, the Tour of China in early 2006 for the first time was not a purely photo and/or business tour but I took considerable time to delve more in to the other attractions of Chinese Culture. Now that the basic work on Beijing was well underway, we took more time to find the better restaurants, try new tastes, fruits and the like.
Although DrBen did not get much opportunity to delve into the realms of Peking Opera and Chinese Acrobatics, he did read plenty on the Opium War & Revolution.
The Divine Land Peony Garden lies across the Road from Bai Ma Si - China's first Buddhist Temple and thus a popular Pilgrim destination.
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The Tea-Road - China and Russia meet across the Steppes, by Martha Avery - source book on the history of Silk- and Tea Road and routes.
The Palace Museum and Jingshan are always remarkable places to visit and browse around in. In April & May however 1000s of Flowers enhance the scenery even further and bring out happiness in all visitors.
Search KLM for available Tickets and Booking - in cooperation with www.drben.net.
<-- No walk in Beijing for Dr.Ben without Camera of course ! Here at Jingshan Park and the North Gate of the Palace Museum.
DrBen receiving Flowers and Attention at Home
As a Result of the First week's weather, initially attention was divided between Photography and Business on the One Hand, and
making happy times with Caroline on the other. The Beijing Kitchen tasted Good and my return felt as a home-coming as never Before. "Tiny" even awaited me at the airport bringing colorful and fragrant flowers !
A Poem by Mao Zedong as displayed in the Restaurant.
Soon the Beijing Weather turned for the Better however and we could go out together to enjoy spingtime in Beijing, and .. in my case - to photograph yet another bunch of Beijing Historic Landmarks and sites, in order to create to 1st and most complete Virtual City of Beijing. Quite a Challenge !
Spring Time in Beijing means pleasant weather, flocks of Tourists and plenty of things to See and Enjoy !
That is exactly, what Dr.Ben came down for !
After meeting up in Beijing in November of 2004, in 2005 we traveled together to Chengde to see the best preserved regal gardens in China, to Datong in pursuit of the Famous Buddha Statues of the Silk Road and even to Thailand for pure leisure.
This time we were preparing to find a new destination, although I had enough things to do in Beijing. It is a huge City, and eventhough Dr.Ben had visited plenty times already, at the time I still had seen only half of the City and monuments. Today even, I am not Done !
One of a Kind 5 DVD Documentary from China - The Palace Museum
Only available from our Online Store ! - Buy Now !!
Dr.Ben returning to The Palace Museum one more Time before leaving China. It is tradition to visit the Palace Museum at least once during every stay in Beijing, however .. usually Dr.Ben visits more than once. Beijing's Forbidden City is one of Dr.Ben's favorite places on Earth !
Dining together and trying the Local Kitchen is always part of a proper China Report Tour ! Although, admittedly, Dr.Ben originally was hardly a "foodie", with help of Caroline he is now discovering the Chinese Kitchen and other Foods ...
Whatever you do ! If you come to Jingshan, be sure to bring a Camera !
Enjoy having your picture taken with the Palace, the abundant surrounding Flowers or one of the other Historic monuments of the Park. If you are more in for leisure, on less crowded days the Pavilions on Jingshan Ridge are great places to enjoy the sun and scenery while reading a book about it all.
You should try it some time !
How about Tales of the Forbidden City, explaining the Palace Museum and some of its history, or "From Emperor to Citizen" the autobiography of Aisin-Gior0 Pu Yi ?
Both Books deal with scenes at Jingshan too !
On the way to the Next historic site or marvel Dr.Ben always checks his camera and makes sure everything in is in order to go...
Touring China is a mix of hard work, exercise, patience and often also relaxing in hotel rooms and just having a swell time.
Got your Cameras Ready, yet ? !
When you are Touring the LongMen Site it seems inevitable to Pose like a Buddha. Howdy !
Although there are more spots in LuoYang to marvel at the peonies and enjoy the feel of the green and fertile Chinese Heartlands, this spot certainly has an abundance.
It is an ejoyable getaway from any tourist crowds and a pleasurable direct journey into the beauties of nature and Chinese rural life.
Mind you - the LongMen Caves are world famous and among the well-visited spots in China. It is one ignorant tour-group after the other, nowadays.
DrBen at Longmen Caves, LuoYang, in Henan.
Luckily Caroline and I managed to find a quieter Time and still enjoyed our Tour of the Giant Park. A warning, this does include some pretty tough stair-climbing !
In the first week of May it is pretty hot already in LuoYang, so make sure you have something to drink too.
Enjoy ! There is a river, a Buddhist Pagoda and ofcourse - the 1000's of buddha statues of all sizes !
Photographing hours on end and walking district by district can be quite exhausting. Since Dr.Ben also works 70+ hours a week in The Netherlands, all trips in China count as holidays too !
While relaxing - one can finally catch up on some good source reading and find out what more to see and photograph ....
After playing around in Beijing for a while we decided to visit LuoYang for some fresh air and a new taste of the Chinese Country-side.
Apart from the LongMen Caves and Wei + Han Dynasty Statues of the Buddha, there are two major attractions at LuoYang. Both are located somewhat outside of the City but, as one can tell from these photos Dr.Ben is quite serious about his photograhy and reporting, so .. off we went.
The two other destinations are the Bai Ma Si - White Horse Temple, alledgedly the First ever Buddhist Temple established on Chinese Soil and the other One is
the Shao Lin Monastery, famous for the KungFu Specialist featured in many popular movies.
Both are legends in Chinese Culture.
However unfortunatly, due to the Chinese Golden Week of Holiday there were so many visitors that Dr.Ben will have to return at a later time for the
better photos, and quite frankly, so as not to be
are at their very best so we were happy to arrive there !
On to the River and the Famed LongMen Caves of the Silk Road.
annoyed and disturbed by hordes of leisure seekers walking in on our photo ops.
I quickly found out how to operate my camera best and so the year 2006 gave us some great new photos of Beijing. The File Size now up to 8 something megapixels.
Caroline is a lot better looking than Dr.Ben, I feel, but ofcourse I was happy to pose for Photos in these spots !
Hello World !
Dwelling among History with his Camera at hand Dr.Ben is always Happy. But having such great weather and interesting company certainly helps !
Caroline is also very helpful for on site translations, as Dr.Ben still hasn't found the considerable time needed to
Master the Chinese Language. Far from it actually ! In all things I learned, one is that I know only a few words to help me get by.
Not only for reading the adjacent Book from "Opium War to Liberation"
and others in our Online Store, it is also simply because of the Marco Polo Name.
Any westerner interested in China and
many others must have heard about him. Therefor, the bridge, although famed for completely different reasons, had had a magical attraction for some years already. It is only because there are so many other famous and worthwile places in Beijing that, so far, I had not gotten to it.
Finally, Caroline suggested she take me down there and I go see and photograph the lot. Naturally, she only had to suggest this course of action one... - and, off we were.
LuKou Qiao (Chiao) or Marco Polo Bridge is probably not what one would expect. It wasn't what I thought. There is more than only the Bridge but not very much, which makes it interesting. Wanping Walled Village is nearby.
And so is the National Memorial of the War of Resistance against Japan.
If you can get your Taxi Driver to find it or perhaps even you know the correct bus-line to take, you will get delivered at the War Memorial's Parking Lot. From there it is an interesting walk along the Walls of Wanping Village (restored) and these bullet shaped drum stones. They are inscribed with messages from international revolutionaries who were at Wanping in September 1937 when the Japanese made their move for all of China.
Current day Luoyang is home of the Peony and some more of the Wei Dynasties' (see Datong, or Shanxi Province Introduction) Silk Road Buddha Statues and Murals. After the Wei Dynasty had helped introduce Buddhism into China from the Silk Road and had started a tradition of carving cave statues of the Buddha, they moved their Capital more to the South and across the Yellow River to no other city then LuoYang. Hence, they continued their Cave Murals and Budhha Carving at Longmen near LuoYang. After them, the Tang Dynasty and others helped bring together a whole Valley dedicated to the Buddha and Buddhism.
LongMen is world famous and not completely for no reason. If you are in the area, make sure you pay a visit ! Although there are better preserved remnants of the buddhist art and culture carried on the silk road, as I found out later, the LongMen Caves rate among the oldest. Only Yungang is older this side of China !
LuoYang itself is not that much of an interesting City. However, we are not done with the City and surroundings yet ! We will return, possibly traveling from Shanxi.
For now we only scouted out the City of LuoYang although DrBen did make some serious efforts of making a basic coverage of the City. The Huge Amount of Tourists coming out during the Golden Week - for now a week in which all Chinese have holiday, soured our visits to the White Horse Temple and Shao Lin Temple. Luckily, we could enjoy the flowers of LuoYang the more.
There is always something to enjoy in China, even if your main goal, for the time being, is shrouded in flocks of visitors.
Although we came for the Wei Dynasty Statues at LongMen,
and Bai Ma Si, at least we came at the very right time to enjoy LuoYang's famous Peonies.The weather was perfect.
LuoYang itself is not very lively and vibrant but it seems to be modernizing and has enough to see in 5 days.
Longmen will take you one day, a visit to the far way Shao Lin Monks and their Warrior Monastery also. Then there is plenty more !
To give a serious and trustworthy internet account of all Cities, we always pay multiple visits.
Next Time we may find our way to LuoYang down from TaiYuan and PingYao in Shanxi. Or, we may travel there from KaiFeng, another ancient Imperial Capital with some interesting sites to visit in its immediate area.
Henan and South Shanxi have plenty to offer for the visitor and DrBen already calculated he could spend a month photographing the several places of his interest. Please help finance and Sponsor him !
Actually, it is quite vital that
as many People as Possible buy the dvd's
, stuff and films we advertize, shop in our online store, buy photo-prints or simply DONATE !!!!
Donate ? Thats Right !
Yes, you can. Dr.Ben is arrogant enough to figure that if people apperently can sponsor guys like Bin Laden, than sure as h*ck our friendly photography, tourism and cultural travel oriented site should be MORE eligable. So, donate and support !
Your online orders and ofcourse direct Donations will help keep China Report Expanding and bringing new information.
So, help keep DrBen free all days to work on his Cause !
Dr.Ben spent the rest of 2006 creating a 50% visitor increase but ofcourse ...
Shouldn't there be more ?
DrBen certainly thinks so, so if you are impressed by his work perhaps you could reward him and help enrich the internet further.
During his last day in Beijing Dr.Ben returned to the Palace Museum of Beijing in order to complete more of his first virtual Palace Museum on the Internet. A large basic part of it already came available in Late 2006 and more in the spring of 2007, but even then the Palace is too huge to have photographed and seen all, already.
New Parts of the Forbidden City are opened and more old treasures have been taken out of storage or re-aquired from the market and now on display in a changing Palace Museum.
The Evil Empress-Dowager Cixi and her control over the Reign of the Guanxu Emperor. Great Costumes + Historic Drama !
Buy it - Click Here
Stone Carved Peony from a Beijing Temple.
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Marco Polo - The True Story, a remarkable documentary revealing the likely truth about Marco Polo's epic Journey and adventure !
How? By putting Reports online for China Report. That way I & You keep finding out more and thus keep returning !
One thing I found out is that since May 2008 Wanping has become a stop on the Metro/Subway Lines, a great improvement if you would like to go out to Marco Polo Bridge by yourself without bothering on Tours.
But there is much more, as you can read in the Report and our Pages on the Beijing Legation Quarter, in 1900 AD the Boxers warmed up their actions by destroying the railroads and telegraph lines near Wanping. Those Boxers, quite a passionate bunch. Luckily none of them are around today to keep us from enjoying a peaceful walk on this remote bridge.
One has to pose with the Lions lining Marco Polo Bridge. I guess, to anyone European the Marco Polo name is famous if not Magical. The Bridge still is a worthwhile experience even today !
The Fun thing is, due to my work, job, activities, hobby or whatever you want to make of it, I get to re-enjoy my visits Time and again.
A Long awaited photo opportunity, finally reaching and visiting Marco Polo Bridge. In 2007 i would even visit Dunhuang, an Oasis City on the Silk Road mentioned in Marco Polo's Book "Il Millione".
No, I do not mind to live in Hotel Rooms ! Just as long as I get to see interesting things, great architecture, culture, history and all that.
I love traveling in China and it is just great that they have so many foods to choose from just about everywhere.
For the year 2006 I had to contend with a Headquarters in Beijing and a lot of Time building websites and collecting funds in The Netherlands, however.
I would rather be in China enjoying all of this, so this will remain a steady goal. Everything Mobile, I say !