Travelling China & HongKong

In February 2017 we have visited Shenzhen, Beijing, and HongKong. At the time of our travels, we didn't have a VPN internet connection and were unable to blog straight away. So the time of publication and actual travel do not coincide..

On the trip, we came under the spell of this fascinating country and its inhabitants..

So much so we refreshed our knowledge of Confucius and were even more intrigued

http://asiasociety.org/education/confucianism

layers of history and of human scale

  • coffee

    Starbucks is the place to be in China. Coffee is hot. Symbol for Urban Succes. Expensive and exclusive too. Even we started to believe the hype, drinking more and more luke warm overpriced cappucino.

  • or tea

    Tea houses were rather hard to find. This one in is located Beijing. Very exclusive as well. The little pots of tea will last you hours, though. Allowing for a good working session on the computer or, a good long conversation with a friend.

hong kong amateur photo shoot

forbidden city, traditional clothing as style statement

  • Chinglish

    Many public signs and posters and advertisement have english words. It remains unclear if they are there for foreigners or lend a certain status to the message.

  • heavenly peace

    The Tien An Minh square is huge.. Huge..

  • heavenly pictures

    you can photograph yourself or have your picture taken

  • by the professionals

Most tourism ofcourse is of Chinese visiting their country...

  • nature as culture

    Stones, trees, unusual natural phenomenon are displayed as sculptures.

  • a good meal

    The sign of a good host is serving you so much food

  • never finishes

    that after everybody has finished, the table is still full

  • scooters wear coats

  • they are all different

  • & very traditional looking

  • buddhist temple

    The temple is still a temple. A place of worship. Visitors are asked no to photograph the buddha.

  • : no pictures of the buddha

    some say this means, not in the temple, so taking pictures from the outside is ok. We're not sure..

  • Beijing, Zaha Hadid by day

    Like giant pebbles. New, yet very fitting...

  • by night

  • industrial Shenzhen

    we visit the Led factory of Jacky...

  • LED factory

flowerworks, beautifull

Shenzhen, young man making a video, dressed like pig..

mores

people on phones

One of the most exciting things of travelling in a new environment is the search for the normal.. This is apparently the way of the subway..

  • big city- human scale

    Is the human hand still present in a city of millions?

  • Yes. We noticed these carts, adepted to the specific needs of the user.

  • Nice!

getting the story

center of Shenzhen, market, housing, high rise housing & offices

Being in Shenzhen, a new town of 15 million inhabitants, is an experience. It plays with all our notions what a city should be: historic centre, relatively new urban commercial area, housing, industrial sites. First: there is no historic centre. Everything is new. Symbol of the start of the growth, the passenger ship Minghua, meaning "Spirit of China" lies now landlocked in the Seaworld entertainment park. Because a new area of land has been created on the coast. Still, the centre has the difference in scale that functions as a sense of time. Because in essence, this is what we need: the story of a place. Whether it's traditional or not....

Disruptive competition of marketforces...or Lifestyle changing initiatives?

Hirebikes in China, back to the sixties?
a new phenomena on the sidewalks of the capital of China.
It reminds us of citylife back home in Amsterdam.

Make a photo with your phone to scan the code and the bike is yours to take! So the combination of the use of smartphone and the use of legmuscle reduces polluting transport.
It' s wonderfull,... or?

The succes of hire bikes in Beijing is enormous. They have been distributed to all corners of the city. In some locations they have been transformed into huge piles of metal and have become almost a public hazard. The succes of the hirebikes shows a limit in a selforganising principle- human behavior. There are so many different brands that offer you this service. yellow, green, blue and silver bikes.... it makes your head spin. The supply of bikes is one of over-abundancy, like a flood. So it gives you the feeling that it is of little value. Without supervision this can turn into a mess. i think it is just a phase in another step in the experiment, a selforganising city.

The different companies are in fierce competition for customers and the most wonderfull thing is that this phenomena comes closest to the whitebicycle plan, originated in the sixties in Amsterdam.


In China 2017 it is not a plan, but a reality. i feel at home at once!!


Best practice

Shenzhen

Although everything looks modern and is in fact new, Shenzhen as a big city is only 35 years old, it doesn't give you the new-town blues. Old traditions are visible everywhere. Specially in the green spaces and the overall appreciation of nature. What is most striking is the love and care for plants that is everywhere in the public space. Shop owners have their little garden of potted plants. Restaurants have and abundance of greenery. Even on a small scale in the form of the miniature landscape nature is present. It makes the size of the building less daunting and oppressive. Public space still feels like a people's place....

  • private-public