Having left the Everest Base Camp in Tibet, we spend the night at the Kyirong Guest House. Kyirong is at the border of Tibet and just 25 kms from the main (new) Nepalese entry point for anyone traveling overland.

At the border, we have to pass through Chinese customs. It is a long process and despite very few travelers, the baggage inspection is thorough and tedious. Each and every item, souvenir, literature, map etc., on Tibet is confiscated. We exit with only our photographs and memories! 

Outside this customs building is (about) a 50m stretch of no-man’s land. We drag our luggage through this dusty path to the Nepali baggage check area.

Unlike the one we just left; this is chaotic! Bags, people, dust, confusion and chaos is a stark reminder that we have definitely left China! Read More

Everest Base Camp. EBC they call it. I’ve seen pictures and dreamt of visiting this highly elevated location (no pun intended). Now here I am, en route… 

I leave Lhasa to the Everest Base Camp via Shigatze. There are 11 of us in this bus and after five days together in Lhasa, we have become good friends and happy travelers!  

Tibet is located on the Tibetan Plateau, the world’s highest region. This mountainous region is speckled with life-giving rivers, spectacular lakes and the most amazing views. And the winding road network is a sight to behold! Read More

I have a dream to someday visit all of the Wonders of the World.  This time, it’s the Great Wall of China. Built between the 5th century B.C. and the 16th century, the Great Wall is a 4000-mile, stone and earth fortification built to protect the Chinese empire from invading Mongols. This makes it the world’s longest man-made structure. 

While there are many sections of the Wall that can be accessed, I am at Mutianyu, known as one of the best-preserved and least crowded. It is 65km to the north of Beijing. Once there, the ticket entrance is a short walk from the vehicle park and I’m given the choice of walking up to the top, or hitching a ride on a cable car.  

Of course, I get on the cable car! 

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As SQ 802 circled Beijing’s airspace for landing, I crane my neck at the window seat trying to get a glimpse of the Great Wall. I am disappointed because at this late midnight hour, there are too many twinkling lights to confuse me in this capital city of modern architecture. 

China has been a source of fascination for me. From wondering what the most populace nation in the world was like, to history lessons about ancient dynasties, the Mongol conquest of China (I am a great fan of the Genghis Khan), the strict communist control by Mao Tse-tung, apt quips by Confucius, to walking finally on the world’s wonder, the Great Wall among so much more.  

Now, I’m here…. 

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That means “good things come in small packages” in Scottish. A perfect description of my destination! 

The weather is chilly yet a welcome change from the scorching heat in Colombo and the three-hour 30 minute drive to Hatton is easy and picturesque (and much more bearable than the three-hour power cuts I was experiencing at home). I am en route to The Argyle , located along the Nuwara Eliya road and Google Maps explains the way very clearly. 

The Argyle

Set in 3.1 acres of sprawling tea country, The Argyle is large, spacious and themed along Scottish heritage in reverence to the era of the Scottish tea planters who settled in this area in the 1850s.

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