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I was so excited to enter a new continent, South East Asia. Always the first country in a new continent became very special cause everything would be a new thing. I entered the country after the dark, so I wanted to go to a hotel directly. But first I did need to take local money from ATM. I was cycling around the border town because every ATM’s limit was really small under $100. I would lose $10-$20 every time I take money. So I usually take $200-$300 in one time. I couldn’t find any ATM which can give like $200. I didn’t want to stay in a new country on a late night. So,  I just gave up and took little money.

I was really hungry but the only thing I could buy was hot porridge in a hot humid night. Later, this porridge became the one I had eaten very often in Vietnam. They usually put pork ground meat, fried onion, and fried garlic on the top of the porridge.

After having dinner, I was looking for a hotel. Usually, if I paid $15 in a small city, China, I could stay at a quite modern clean hotel. But it was not easy to find the same quality hotel at $15 in Vietnam. I ended up at the old rusty hotel.

When I was looking for ATM, restaurant, and hotel in the night, I had seen many young guys on a scooter. Actually, many of them looked like teenager gang that I was a bit scared. To be honest, I became nervous in a new country as soon as arriving sometimes. So maybe it looked more threatening. As traveling in Vietnam later, I had realized that the country looked very young with so many young generations on the street.

I had stayed at the border town for a few days and enjoyed every new culture and food. The first thing I liked in Vietnam was fast internet. Internet was slow in China where I traveled more than 5 months before coming to Vietnam. Chinese government blocked so many websites like Google, Youtube, Facebook, and even Korean websites. So I had to use always VPN which changed IP address. It made internet speed worst. So I enjoyed so much freedom in Vietnam online. As I heard, Vietnam controlled the internet, too. But as a foreigner, I could use any site. So I didn’t have any problem.

Suddenly I was so welcomed by the local people in Vietnam. I had a dark skin color and I had been tanned lot on a bicycle. So most of the people cannot guess I am from Korea. Some Vietnamese thought I am Vietnamese. But they didn’t care where I am from. They just welcomed me without caring about the skin color that I was so happy.

To be honest, I was upset several times in China cause some local people welcomed too much Caucasian and ignored me, which I’ve never experienced in any other countries. Unforntatuely, some people in my country would be similar to some Chinese. However, I felt finally I was treated the same as any other skin color people here. I had enjoyed the local people’s greeting while cycling.

As I started cycling in Vietnam, every scenery was interesting such as what they wear and how they live

Many houses along the road looked like this. The first floor was empty and people lived on the second floor. I was wondering how their house looked like inside.

There was a boy cycling with an eagle. He let me take the picture kindly.

I could feel I was in South East Asia. Everything was covered with green plants.

And I was covered by sweat all the time. I couldn’t use suncream because of too much sweat.

It was hilly near the border. But then later the road was pretty flat.

There was one thing I really liked about Vietnam was their hat. It looked so practical and beautiful. I wanted to buy it even.

There was another thing I liked in Vietnam was cycling between paddy field. Yellow green color made me so relaxed and feel peaceful. In Northern Vietnam, they can harvest two times a year and in Southern Vietnam, they can do three times. It meant Vietnam has beautiful color always.

As reaching a big city, I could see more people on the road. There were so many motorbikes but less cars on the road. So I had more space on the road that I felt safe to cycle.

But when I was arriving Hanoi, Vietnamese capital, suddenly too many motorbikes and cars that I didn’t feel safe anymore.

Actually, I didn’t have the plan to go to Vietnam cause I read from a famous blogger that Vietnamese cheat lot. This was an article I read; WHY I’LL NEVER RETURN TO VIETNAM I do hate local people cheating me too much often. I’ve been like more than 60 countries and so far only two countries (almost three) cheated me too much. That was Tanzania, Kenya, and Uzbekistan. Cheating is quite common everywhere but those countries did too much. For example, a bottle of water price was always different. So I thought it would be better to not go to Vietnam as the person hating too much cheating. But Vietnamese border was the closest one from where I cycled in China. So I decided to go without any expectation.

But I really liked Vietnam from the first day. And cheating was not that worse. If I felt it was overpriced, I could go to other shops or restaurants. I was worried about the traffic before coming to Vietnam. But I even did like so much about chaotic Vietnam Hanoi traffic cause I felt it was surviving game.

First of all, what I did in Vietnam was voting for South Korean president cause it was Korean election day. South Korea had several dictatorships at the beginning of democracy for over 38 years. But there were so many people always fighting to get freedom. They became the biggest inspiration in my life. After seeing so much sacrifice to get the right democracy in the recent South Korean history, I do thank so much to have it and I always want to keep this by voting.

Hanoi’s night was really crazy with so many local people, tourists, cars, motorbikes and street vendors. I was surprised that I really liked this crowd. It was like a different world.

After voting, I met another Korean world cyclist whom I talked for a few years only on internet messenger. We always said the earth is round so if we keep cycling, we will meet one day. And here we really met. Hanoi was his last destination that he flew back to South Korea though.

I looked for the person to help me have a street food video cause to do with tripod by myself was quite difficult. Then I found a local film group. One of them invited me to watch a documentary which she took. The U.S used three times more bombs than the second world when they invaded Vietnam. Unfortunately, there were too many blind shells even until now. Kids and local people in the village have been still killed by them. She went to a village to take a film about how people live there. But actually, her documentary was really stillness. She didn’t change the camera angle often so it looked really boring as I didn’t understand their language.

Since I loved filming, I’ve realized that every three or four seconds camera angles are changed to avoid boredom at the show or movie. But her documentary didn’t change angle much at all. What I really surprised that it made me remember those scene for a long time more than a modern TV show. I remembered elder people eating dinner at their house and his neighbor came and play guitar. I really could say her slow documentary was memorable at the end.

After watching it, they invited me to have dinner together next to the river.

We made fire and ate street food which we bought on the way. It was really lovely night with them. It gave always a special feeling when I had a good moment with local people.

On the way back to the hostel, I used Grab motor taxi. Traffic was crazy that I felt like I was having the most amazing adventure to survive. Motor taxi was cheaper than car taxi and it was more fun. So I used to take it whenever I needed to go a bit far. Definitely, I cannot recommend it to the people who care about safety first always. It would be only good for people who like crazy things.

(Grab made in Singapore is like Uber in South East Asia. Grab was going bigger and even Grab killed Uber in Thailand. I thought it was like the Chicken game. Grab and Uber gave lots of promotion like free rides to customers in Thailand. After winning at the Chicken game against Uber, Grab didn’t give promotions often and they increased the price. haha. It was time to monopolize for Grab in Thailand.)

There was one thing I was disappointed in Vietnam was that I couldn’t see girls wearing a traditional white dress. I didn’t know that they wear it for a special day. It was a misunderstanding from TV show. Luckily, I found a group of students wearing it. They were so friendly that they let me take the photo.

I was thinking if they come to my country, they would be extremely disappointed like “Where is handsome boys and beautiful girls which we saw in Korean Drama?”

I went to Thang Long Water Puppet Theatre with the people I’ve met at another hostel. On the left side, people played a traditional musical instrument and on the right side, people played puppet under the water. In the beginning, I thought puppet was moving by remote control cause I didn’t know people were under water to hide and play puppet. It was really interesting to watch.

I really liked Hanoi’s crazy busy street that I had stayed over the week. I usually liked to be lazy and do nothing. But I was so busy that I was always out of the hostel during my stay in Hanoi. Most of the times I came back late at night. So it was funny to see new people at the next morning cause most of the guests stayed only two or three days.

Ha Long Bay was a really popular attraction in Vietnam. But I was not interested in going it because it was expensive and I didn’t want to go to too touristic place where I cannot feel much local atmosphere. However, I thought I need to do homework, having tour. So I went to a tour agency. They had a book about attractions with picture, price, time and so on. The picture of Tam Coc looked very interesting. Small boats were crossing a narrow river surrounded by gold rice paddy. I booked it with the guy I met at the hostel.

I usually didn’t join a tour company that it was my fourth experience in six years of my trip. It was funny that the tour schedule was exactly the same as I had in Peru and Turkey. We must stop at the souvenir shop having a grocery store at the beginning and the end.

Also, the tour company put some places to stop, which was not much interesting. The reason was they wanted to tell us “We visited so many places” Tourism business grows bigger and bigger these days but the way tour had been all the time same.

So this picture meant tour company wanted to make sure “We visited several different places!”

My fav Asian Buffalo

After having lunch, finally, we went to river in Tam Coc.

They rent us a bicycle that we cycled into a green paddy. I really liked the scenery that it was a really good choice to come here than expensive busy Ha Long Bay.

I was curious about what he was catching. I had seen often men wearing that kind of hat. It looked really cool.

We took the boat where local people drove with their feet. Unlike the picture on the book at the tour agency, it was not gold, but green. I realized to cross gold paddy needed the right time. And of course, there must be photo editing on attraction book at the tour company office. But still, I liked cause the scenery was beautiful.

We passed a short cave too.

I had thought about the effect of tourism for a long time. I had concluded that traveling is a way to destroy, ruin, and steal local people’s nature, economy, and freedom. As one of the example, many tourists like me took the picture and made noise at the attraction where local people worked hard for their lives. Imagine the shoe on the other foot. Every day you must go to the office, shop, or factory to work although you didn’t like. But then there were people watching you working and taking the photo of you. They looked so happy and enjoyable to watch you while you only wish to go back home. Moreover, they made a big noise like having a party. It would disturb you so much. Also, these people had so much money that they didn’t mind pay anything so they make the local prices going up too high to live for local people.

It doesn’t matter it is a remote area or city or traveling by bike or car. All the time it was the same that we, travelers, bothers local people. There was lyric in my favorite Korean song “To live makes me feel guilty” 

So will I stop travel? or should other people stop travel? I don’t know. I just think it is the time to limit foreigner visitors in every country, which will not happen cause money is the most important in this world than respecting someone.

After visiting souvenir shop again on the way back, the road covered with full of motorbikes. It was more than Hanoi. China had made air pollution from factories and many other things, so local people must wear a mask in many places. But here in Vietnam, they made air pollution right in front of the road that everybody wore the mask while on their motorbikes.

Just before leaving Hanoi, I decided to do another homework, taking the video of street food. I couldn’t find the people to film me that I had to do with my tripod by myself. The guy who went Tam Cok together asked me what I would do today. I told him I will film the food. Then he said he can help me if I showed delicious local food. He filmed me having a few dishes. But some of them I took by myself later.

This dish was called Bun Chan and it was my most favorite dish in Vietnam. They cooked pork on the grill separately so it had barbeque smell and the meat was tender and chewy.

There were so many good foods and deserts I found in Hanoi.

BEST Sweet and Deep Vietnam Street Food Tour in Hanoi, Vietnam. - YouTube

Here is the video for you I made

And this is the post about the food and location

This was Vietnamese money. There were a few ATM I could take a bit bigger money like $200. Vietnam money was really high like $1 was 20,000 Dong. If there were too many zeroes, suddenly I felt expensive which made me save money. By the way, Korean money is high too. Usually, $1 is 1,100 WON.

After Hanoi, I started passing many villages and towns again.

I had cycled with Korean guy for a week after Hanoi.

This was my favorite scenery to cycle. Many small rock mountains were covered by green plants.

My gear shift was installed at the end of the handlebar. This was a very old fashion that no bicycle was built with this way except touring bicycle these days. The reason is it is not broken easily. I had also used it six years without the problem. But suddenly it didn’t work. My gear shift moved down automatically and it made me cycle so difficult especially on the uphill. The problem of the end shift bar was it was impossible to find at the shop. People can only order it online. (I have met Shimano staff one day and he said they don’t make it anymore even because it is too old fashion to make.)

I went to a bicycle shop on the street and waited to fix. The opposite side of the road, people were having the hair cut. After waiting for an hour to fix, he told me he couldn’t fix. Then I found profer bicycle shop. He put some kind of tape inside to prevent from moving down. He said it would help temporarily.

Everything was so green.

I ate noodle lots of times in Vietnam. This time chicken broth was so good. By the way, it was really hot and humid and there was no air conditional at the restaurants usually. So I had lots of sweat even during lunch break with hot noodle.

There was beautiful scenery on the top of the hill sometimes.

Vietnam small road downhill through villages - YouTube

The video of the dowonhill taken by Gopro which is usually blur and colorless

Mai Chau was a bit popular among tourists. There were hostels and a few attractions.

It was a really..

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Amazing Sweet and Deep Vietnam Street Food Tour in Hanoi, Vietnam. - YouTube

<Hanoi street food map>

Vietnam has amazing street foods. If you love food, you must try best Vietnamese street foods.

Banh Cuon  – [Thin Rice sheet with meat or shrimp] (Address – 14 B bao khanh ko)

It is made from a thin, wide sheet of steamed fermented rice batter filled with a mixture of cooked seasoned ground pork or Shrimp. It is a small dish that it would not make you full.

Bun cha [Dip noodles into Soup with Grilled pork broth]  (Address-Cannot find local address, but Exact coordinator 21.028946, 105.849455)

It is served with grilled pork in the broth which is based on vinegar, sugar and fish sauce. You have to take rice noodle to dip into pork soup with herbs.

Xoi Xeo – [Yellow sticky rice with fried onions and meat] (Address –  35B Nguyễn Hữu Huân, Lý Thái Tổ, Hoàn Kiếm)

It is sticky rice topped with ground de-hulled mung bean and fried onion. Usually it can be served with eggs, steamed chicken, or pork.

Nom Thit Bo Kho [Dried beef salad] 

(Address – 51 Dinh Tien Hoang, around 21.031830, 105.853115)

It is a light and refreshing salad of fresh green papaya, strips of beef and sweet beef jerky, topped with toasted peanuts and a fish sauce dressing.

Banh Tom – [Shrimp and Sweet Potato Fritter] (Address – 52 Lý Quốc Sư, Hàng Trống, Hoàn Kiếm)

It is Vietnamese shrimp cake. It is made of thick cut sweet potato and shrimp, coated with light batter and deep-fried until golden brown. It is often served as an appetizer and commonly eaten wrapped with lettuce, pickle, herbs and dipped into nuoc mam sauce.

Nem Ran – [Spring rolls] 

It is made of mince pork, sea crabs, eggs, minced Jew’s ears, thin-top mushroom, dried onions, bean-sprouts, pepper, spiced salt, etc. The mixture is then rolled in flat rice cakes and fried in a pan until crispy.

Bun Thang – [Chicken Vermicelli Soup noodle] (Address – 48 Cầu Gỗ, Hàng Bạc, Hoàn Kiếm)

It is a traditional noodle soup with dried shrimp, chicken, egg, onion, other vegetables, a little bit Belostomatid essence and other spices.

Che – [Sweet dessert beverage]  (Address – 95 Hang Bac)

It is sweet dessert soup or pudding that there are many kinds. It can be made with mung beans, black-eyed peas, kidney beans, tapioca, jelly (clear or grass), fruit (longan, mango, durian, lychee or jackfruit), and coconut cream.

Egg Coffee – [Most Creamy coffee] 

(Address – <Giang Café> 39 Nguyễn Hữu Huân, Lý Thái Tổ, Hoàn Kiếm
Original egg coffee shop.. but they make big potion all together with big machine. Not fresh
– I cannot find the other place where staff made fresh egg coffee)

It is made of Black coffee, Egg York, Honey, Condense Milk, Milk and Rum. It is most creamy coffee. You have to mix very well at the beginning to have deep flavor.  Giang Café made egg coffee not with Rum, but Whisky.

The post Top 9 Best Hanoi Vietnamese Street Foods Tour in Vietnam 2019 appeared first on Cycling Around The World.

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In Xian, I spent my last day of the year at a hostel as counting down with friends I just met at the hostel. After that, we went to a bar and club to enjoy the new year.
At the next day, we visited Terracotta Army together. In the past, I saw it in the documentary film that it was very impressive at that time. But in reality, I felt different. I didn’t know that they put all terracotta army in one big place.

I went here on 1st of Jan where every Chinese visited for their holiday. There were too many people to enjoy actually. I had to squeeze into people to see. After it, I got a lesson; NEVER EVER VISIT TOURIST PLACE ON CHINESE HOLIDAY IN CHINA. Sometimes I checked travel website to get info of Chinese attractions and I could see foreigner’s review like “I visited on weekend and there were too many Chinese to enjoy.” China has a big population but cities and towns looked empty cause they have huge lands that they don’t need to squeeze in one place to live. So I didn’t feel their huge population while cycling. But when I visited Chinese attraction, then suddenly I could feel 1.3 billion populations. Here is the way to avoid Chinese Holiday while visiting China; If you type on the internet “Chinese Public Holiday (Country Name + Public Holiday)” you would see their national holiday. I recommend avoiding the weekend too.

On the way to the hostel, I could see a weird thing. I asked the seller what is made of and he told me it’s fox’s fur. Then I asked what’s the other one? He said “That’s wolf’s fur”

Um……Interesting…..

We went to the night market.

There were so many people. But at this time, I really liked it cause the market looked so lively.

There were so many different street foods and I tried a few of them.

After we were back to the hostel, we spent time in the common area. We realized we could become a big group to rent a bus to go to the Mount Hua which was very far from Xian and we could share the cost.

I went to Mount Hua on my second day of the year with guys I met at the hostel. It is one of the top five popular mountains in China. We only rented a bus for a day that we had to take a cable car to go up unless I sleep there for a night and come back alone. Peaks were so beautiful. It was fun to hike with nice guys.

This was a really fun part.

The World's Most Dangerous Hiking Trail, Huashan - YouTube

Video of Hiking

The cable car was really pricey and I wanted to come down by walking. Although I didn’t have enough time to catch our bus, I decided to try.

I walked fast as much as I could and then I arrived on the time.

It was very sunny and I could see blue sky well in the west north China most of the times. But since I cycled at Central China, the sky was not clear. Especially, Xian was really grey. I was confused that it was fog or smog. But Chinese from the hostel told me it was air pollution that she recommended me to buy a mask. I saw many foreigners in China were paranoid about air pollution. But I thought the cigarette they smoked was worse than air pollution for their own health. Anyway, I bought a mask as the advice, but I didn’t wear often cause it was not comfortable. And I always took lots of air pollution from a car while cycling next to them that I didn’t care it much. Although it was very cloudy all days, the night view in the city was pretty.

I heard from other cyclists that there was the road where foreigners were not allowed to enter in China. Finally, it was my turn to see it. I really didn’t want to go back cause it would take extra two days. So I just kept cycling.

It was beautiful as cycling next to the lake, but the weather was not nice. The road was very narrow and the visibility was too bad.

One thing I was really scared of on the road was the car overtaking another car on two lanes just next to me on a narrow road without any shoulder. Especially when two big trucks did it, it was scarier than the summer horror movie.

I had to cross one mountain but when I went up more and more the weather became worse for cycling. I didn’t eat any lunch cause I was afraid of being reported by local people to the police. They would know I am a foreigner if I tried to order food at the restaurant. So I just skipped lunch that I was hungry and exhausted. I couldn’t understand why they were so many tucks on this narrow village road. Due to the sudden snow, cars moved slowly near the top.

When the road was covered by darkness, I came down from the mountain. When I tried to check in at a hotel, staffs called the police. Police officers told me I shouldn’t be here. I explained that it was too dark to keep cycling. I promised I would leave early morning. They checked photos on my DSLR camera. Luckily they didn’t know GoPro, a small action cam. On GoPro there was the picture of signboard “No foreigners”, which could be the problem. They took the photo of me and my passport. Actually, time to time police came and took the photo of my passport and my face after I checked in hotels. But this time it was very serious that they warned me I should not stay. But thankfully they understood the situation and allowed me to sleep one night at the hotel. I was out of energy that I wanted to go out for dinner. But police officers said I must not go out. I just had instant cup noodle as the first meal in a whole day. At least it was not bad that I had a warm place to sleep for a night.

At the next morning, the police officers wanted to take me and my bicycle in their car and moved 60 km (37 mi) together. I really didn’t like to take a car with my bicycle that I asked them to let me cycle. They followed me almost half an hour by car from the behind and then suddenly they said goodbye and disappeared.

After maybe one hour riding, I saw a weird thing. Many trucks were waiting at the side of the road endlessly. I was not sure why they were waiting to pass. For me, it was a lovely time that I could enjoy cycling without a big noise. Maybe local residences could enjoy their morning too.

One thing I was really surprised in China was there were too many trucks ever on the road. Even in this kind of small road, they were too many of them. I felt like 40% of cars was trucks and 60% was other cars. In other countries, 10%~30% would be trucks and 70%~90% would be other cars.

Chinese land was really huge as North America that I had to cycle a long distance many days. Sometimes I drank Redbull to get extra energy with Chinese snack. What I was holding on the picture was Chinese Redbull.

As a big land, every town and village had a different atmosphere. This village was really weird. They cut the pig just next to the road that I had to cross a bloody road literally. To eat a pig was fun but to see slaughtering pig was not fun at all.

Passing construction road..

I always felt the excitement on the top of the hill.

I had to cycle 640 km (397 mi) for four days with some reason. It meant I had to cycle until late at night. This time I couldn’t find a good reasonable price hotel. I was too tired to complain about the hotel that my body was melted on the bed as soon as closing my eyes.

On the North West, I was allowed to cycle on the highway. But since Central China, I couldn’t cycle on the highway anymore. But this time, I really didn’t have the choice. The alternative road was really bad gravel steep covered by mud water flooding. I did wish “Please Police Officer, don’t kick me out from here”

It was a really cold night and I was just the middle of the highway that I couldn’t find any hotel. I asked people “Is there any place I can set up the tent?” One of the workers on a general store let me set up the tent at the corner. The tent looked a bit weird because I lost one of the tent poles in Kyrgyzstan.

I was guessing it is high-risk car accident road.

I arrived in Chengdu after midnight. There was one reason I cycled so hard last a few days.

There was the person, Trevor James, I wanted to meet in Chengdu. He was from Canada but lived in China for a few years. He said he would leave soon for the trip. So I cycled so hard to catch him. I had started to talk to him six months ago before the meeting. He had YouTube food channel. He left the comment on my Turkish Street Food Video and I asked him how to make YouTube channel bigger cause he had 70,000 subscribers at that time. When I met him in Chengdu, his channel grew so much that he had 440,000 subs. So he was kinda superstar for me. He was my hope as well cause I wanted to grow my Youtube channel bigger as him. (Now he has 2.3 million subs.)

Although I had spent two days with him and his girlfriend, it was really interesting meeting.

[I guess some of you guys know him. But if you don’t know him yet, check his channel, Food Ranger ]

At our last night, we went to a hot pot meal place which I loved. All those floating things on the soup were crazy Sichuan peppers. It made my tongue numb that I felt weird usually. (But after I left China, I missed it. haha)

Best Youtuber, Food Ranger, tells his big street food channel. (Interview Trevor James) - YouTube

I even made the interview video with him.

He told me via message before I met him that I could stay as much as I want at his house while they were away from home. I was surprised how he could trust me even before meeting. He and his girlfriend were really lovely sweet friendly person. I stayed at their house for a month and updated posts on my blog and videos on youtube.

There was the biggest Chinese holiday coming, Lunar New Year. I didn’t want to spend alone that I had sent messages via Warmshower.org, cyclist hosting website. And one of them invited me their family meal. A grandma was over 90 years old. I was sitting on the couch and when I saw her, I stood up fast to give her my seat. But then a friend told me it was okay I could sit on the couch and she could sit on the wood chair. I realized that their culture was different from my country, South Korea although we looked similar. In my country, to be polite is the most important and I must respect elder people. Maybe my country is more serious about treating elder people and Chinese culture is more relaxed.

They brought me the street market after a meal. I cannot remember what it was. It was rabbit head maybe. I tried all of these included eyes. What I remember was it was really spicy.

Unlike my expectation, it was really quiet at Lunar New Year Eve in China. I thought the street would be busy with fireworks. But there were no any people having traditional Chinese noise fireworks or flying lanterns in the city center. I heard Chinese government prohibited all of these to reduce the problem happened at the city center.

But the place I stayed was far from the city center that I could see people enjoying their small fireworks and flying lanterns.

This is what happened at 12:00 am on Lunar New Year in China - YouTube

Lunar New Year Video in China

In Chengdu, there was Giant Panda Sanctuaries. In the past, Panda was endangered. So Chinese Government built sanctuaries to protect them and it had been changed from “endangered” to “vulnerable” now. Actually, it was more surprising that Panda existed until now because they only had mating one time a year and too slow to run away from a predator.

When I saw Panda for the first time, I was dying cause it was too cute ever!!!!!!!! I was glad that they didn’t sit on the cement. I don’t like Zoo anymore cause it is just torturing wild animals. But Panda Sanctuaries was not bad. I was a bit worried when I saw one panda kept walking forward and backward. But other pandas looked okay.

Red Panda

It was very important to visit early morning to see pandas cause they went to sleep in the afternoon. The laziest animal, Panadas, survived thousands of years. So I, who is too lazy, shouldn’t worry to survive on this earth.

I wanted to kidnap one panda to give Trevor as a gift. But he must be too busy to take care of it and maybe panda would be happy to stay with friends.

I ordered some electric items on online and it arrived before I left Chengdu.

(There was the saddest story ever with one of the gears. I dropped Seagate 2 TB later from the desk and it was broken. But at that time I moved all my videos there cause I was thinking to buy a new portable drive for only video backup. Then all my videos which I took over two years were gone. While I searched about how to fix, I saw most of the broken portable drives were from SEAGATE!!!!!!!!!!!!!! HELL SEAGATE!!!!!!!!!!! I had 1 TB portable hard drive, which was not a famous brand. I dropped several times but it was not broken. I tried to recover data as sending it to the best recover company in South Korea which recovered data from a sunken ship. But they couldn’t recover my data from Seagate that I cried a lot. To do backup hundreds of GB videos was impossible while I kept moving. I was very frustrated for losing my hard work. To take the photo was very easy. But to take the video was a really hard job. I never ever recommend Seagate. If you have now, buy other portable drive and throw away Seagate. You can search about the broken portable drive and you will see most of them are from Seagate. Also, all of my friend who had broken portable hard drive used Seagate. I hope Seagate closes down or does something to fix their faulty items. )

There was a lantern festival that I went with the guy I had met through Warmshowers website.

I tried a pig brain for the first time. It was like chewing tofu that it melted on my mouth. But to be honest, I didn’t like it that he ate the left.

I tried bbq frog as well for the first time. I did enjoy it so much. It was one of the best meat I’ve ever had. (I tried frog at the other country as stew, but the meat tasted not much. Maybe BBQ was the best way to cook the frog.)

I was cycling with Caucasian(White) guy from Africa for one and half day. Then I got free fruit and drink on the way. He asked me “Oh people are extremely kind. They give free fruit and drink often like this, right?”. “No.. it is my first time to get free fruit after four months in China.” “Maybe if you go to South, you will get much free fruit.” But I was not welcomed this much again.

I’ve noticed when I hanged out with Caucasians that many local people really didn’t care where foreigners are from or what they’ve done. The most important thing was skin color. If you are Caucasian, so welcome than other skin color people…. I didn’t had this kind of experience in more than 70 countries that I got very embarrassing. Some Asian country I’ve visited has the same face as me, but they didn’t treat differently between me and my Caucasian friend. So I was frustrated as realizing skin color matters more here. Also, I’ve never seen Chinese acting like this in foreigner countries that it was an unfamiliar thing to see.

I expected that I will make the best friends in China because everybody around the world treats me as Chinese. But sadly it was not like that. Two times I was kicked out from restaurants in China when I tried to use google translation to convert their menu into English. I wanted to explain them, but they were so rude that they just shouted at me without trying to listen. I was treated badly at the restaurant in Russia one time. But at least I was not kicked out. I was thinking if I were Caucasian, I would be still kicked out from those restaurants in China.

One time I was in the hostel and I met European girl cyclist. We had one Chinese girl in the same room and we talked to her only a little bit about where we have cycled so far. European told her she cycled in China several months and I told her I cycled the world several years. Then Chinese girl reaction was so big to European girl, not to me. When she checked out, she only asked selfie to European girl and ignored me sitting just next. I traveled to some countries which had exactly the same color and face like me, but local people didn’t treat big differently that I was not used to having this kind of experience.

I met French cyclist and he told me he was an English teacher in China. He was told he had to say he was American cause the Academy owner asked it. He didn’t have any career of teaching, but he got like $2,000 per month (I cannot remember the exact amount. But it was really good money in China something like this that I couldn’t believe) and then he got a free house. I couldn’t understand how come people believed he was American cause he had a very strong French accent. I heard at the other time, one European told me his friend spoke English really too bad but he taught English to kids in China because he was Caucasian.

It was really sad to hear and experience that skin color matters than any other things. My country would be similar to China that it is not just another country story actually. I hope racism and sexism are less and less in the future.

After Chengdu, I was moving to Southern China. It was getting warmer and there were more mountains. The city named Leshan had significant Buddha statue. But I decided to use a local cheap boat to look than paying an expensive entrance fee. In China, tourist attraction entrance fee is quite high like $15-$30. I’ve visited many of them in the north and now I wanted to save money.

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It was really hard to cycle in the middle of the winter. Sometimes I had to cycle in the snow. I was cycling around the desert area that the distance between cities was quite far. So I had to cycle until late sometimes to get to a hotel.

I wore all the clothes I had when it got really cold.

When I cycled in Finland in the winter, everywhere was covered by the snow. But I saw the desert more often than the snow in western north China. Sometimes the view was blocked by the strong sandstorm. There was nothing to do except keeping cycling to my destination.

I couldn’t believe that I got the flat tire with my new Schwalbe tire!! I only used two weeks, but how come I had already a problem??? Schwalbe was the strongest tire that every traveler used it. This time I tried a different product. I used Schwalbe Marathon before and it was super strong. But this time I bought the different one, Schwalbe Mondial and I was having the problem already after two weeks. Usually, people got only one or two times flat tire when they used Schwalbe tire. I hoped it was really bad luck and it didn’t happen again for one year.

I was heading to Dunhuang, a desert city. I thought if I cycled harder, I could arrive at Dunhuang in one day cause the road was flat. But there was strong wind and I got the flat tire. So I had to cycle until the late night. I was really hungry but it was a desert area that everything was far to reach. I had a very late dinner at a small restaurant.

It was a new record. I cycled from 9 am to 2:30 am that I was on the road for over seventeen and a half hours. Then I made 216 km (134 mi). I thought this record would be never broken on my trip that it would remain as the longest distance in one day cause it was only possible in west China. There was the highway that I didn’t need to stop by a traffic light. Also, it was an empty area that there was no big city to stop or to tour.

To be honest, it was a useless record cause the next day I couldn’t do anything. I was too tired to go out. When I spent too much energy for a long distance like 17 hours cycling, I couldn’t’ sleep deeply and at the next day, I cannot do really much thing cause I got too exhausted. So actually if I cycled this distance in two days, it would be better. haha.

After having enough rest day, I had an amazing desert tour.

I really loved the desert so much. Desert was my favorite scenery in nature.

At the one side of the desert, I could see Crescent Moon Pool. It was quite interesting to see the temple in the desert.

Mogao Caves was a very important place to visit. It was really different from the cave around Turpan that it was 100 times more impressing. Mogao Caves was a bit far from the city that I took the bus. There were only a few times a day for the tour that I had to check the time before going there.
When we started having the tour, we watched 3D first to understand the history. 3D Movie was very detailed that I felt like I was in the cave. So I took the picture cause I knew I couldn’t take the picture in the cave.

The cave was really dark and I must need a guide. I was the only foreigner that I had my own guide. My guide told me she could speak Korean. But it was quite difficult to understand. I was wondering if I have a guide speaking English, it would be better.

The guide had a lantern to point to the wall and she explained many things about the cave and Buddhism. I had seen only Christianity and Islam for a long time on my trip. So it was really interesting to see different religion.

The entrance of the main building was a bit far from the cave that we had to take the tour bus to get there together.

This food was really spicy that my stomach was too sore.

This was typical Dunhuang food. It was donkey meat. The taste was good and I didn’t feel any weird thing from the meat.

On the way to get out of Dunhuang, I couldn’t believe that I had a flat tire again. French cyclist I had met in Turpan told me he had a problem with Schwalbe Mondial as well. Some traveler told me he didn’t have the problem with this tire. I felt like this product was really not good cause Schwalbe was selling faulty one and good one mixed together.

Later I sent the company email to ask a new one cause I got a faulty one. But they just ignored me that I didn’t get any answer back. I was very disappointed by this German Schwalbe company.

After Dunhuang, there was a really interesting lake that I was wondering how this kind of ice was made.

Sometimes I slept at a gas station cause the next city was too far. The place where I pitch my tent was a resting area. But the staff turned off the light in the night so it was kind of my own place.

I got scared when there was the sandstorm. My worry was if cars couldn’t see me, they just could hit me. Also to have the balance with the strong wind was difficult.

Although I was in a remote area, I kept connecting to the world. There was a big news that Korean National Assembly approved the presidential impeachment motion. I was so happy that finally, we won against the wrong thing. When she became a president four years ago, I cried so hard since I knew she was a very wrong corrupted person. I was more upset that how come people voted for her. Now many Korean people knew she was not a good person
Many times things happened with the reason to teach us. Park, the ex-president, opened many people’s eye that people had learned they always had to watch politicians and choose the right person.

Democracy never came for free. So many young Korean people died and missed from 40’s to 80’s after fighting against the dictatorship. Also, more than 2 million people stood on the street to impeach Park. Although South Korea still has so many corruption’s problems, S.Korea is the most democratic country in the whole of Asia. Big respect for the people who always fight to bring the freedom and justice. They were my big inspiration.

After watching the amazing news, I kept cycling. But I was really hungry that I wanted to eat warm food. I couldn’t find any restaurant. Then I opened my magic food. I found it in a grocery shop. Someone would complain that it had too many plastics. But I was really starving and I did want to have warm food. This was a huge gift for me.

There was transparent water and I poured this into some product inside. Then suddenly it made heat. So I could eat warm food.

CHINESE INSTANT FOOD. NO NEED HOT WATER OR BOILING (En CC) - YouTube

(I made the video of how to eat.)

In China, it was not possible to use Google map. I had to turn on VPN to use google map. VPN is the program to change IP address. It was very uncomfortable to use it. Maps.me, offline map app, was not accurate.

The map showed I could go into the city with this road. But the reality was just like the picture that it was blocked. I didn’t want to cycle in the night that I just lift all my bags and bicycle to go over.

I used Baidu map in China. Baidu was like Google in China and they had so many services. Actually, when I tried to use Baidu map for the first time, I gave up because I couldn’t understand Chinese characters well and there was no English menu. Then I found Google map and Maps.me were too bad to use. Then I installed it again and tried to use a few times. At some point, I realized I didn’t need to understand any letter there cause map didn’t need many functions. It was just about touching a few different things on the screen to find a route or hotel.

It was really freezing cold that the lake in the city was frozen.

But my passion about crossing China couldn’t get frozen that I kept cycling.

I cycled really hard in this cold winter in the desert area.

I had visited the end of the Great Wall of China.

This was a very unique thing in the park in China. They wrote with the water and it was gone quickly.

Later I visited so beautiful place. It was called Rainbow mountains in Zhangye Danxia Landform Geological Park. It was 35 km (21 mi) far from the city. I cycled to go there cause the bus looked complicating. I had to cycle 35 km (21 mi) to come back to the city as well. So it was quite a long distance.
Around the sunset, it made the Rainbow Mountains more beautiful. But I would be honest that I added more color on my camera and editing program because to take the picture was the art to me. I liked to emphasize some color to express the most important thing on that moment. For example, I made redder when I took the picture of sunset or sunrise. To take the picture is a similar thing as to paint. To put more color at the thing I like is just skill of the art. Although I added more color, this place itself was beautiful still that it was really worth to cycle a long distance in this cold weather.

After the sunset, the color became a bit darker. To drive a personal car or ride a bicycle were forbidden that I had my own driver which was included at the ticket price and he dropped me at the important place.

It was one of the most impressing places I’ve visited in China.

After touring, my cold cycling started again. -9.1 (15.62f)!!!! It was really freezing!! I used my thermos very well which I bought in Urumqi last month.

When there was a strong wind, I felt colder.

I was really hungry but I couldn’t find a restaurant. I must stop to give some food on my belly.

But first, this mask was really uncomfortable.

There were a few challenges at cycling in the winter. The first thing was my fingers and toes were frozen all the time. The second thing was to keep the heat on my body. The third thing would be a running nose all day!!!!!!!! Seriously my nose was running for like 10 hours to 12 hours when I cycled. I couldn’t blow my nose every 10 minutes while pedaling. I didn’t want to eat my nose. So it was a really annoying uncomfortable thing. Sometimes I had a headache after too much a running nose.

I had a tea to melt this coldness. Having snack and tea, I kept one side of glove between a leg so that I could keep the heat when I wore again.

Late afternoon, I found a very small restaurant running by a family.

Before sitting on a chair, I must put my wet mask, gloves, and others on the heater. One hard thing to cycle in the winter was everything getting wet. Whenever I got the chance to have a heater, I must dry my wet clothes.
I was really hungry that I was so happy to get some food. As soon as I tasted, I was very disappointed that it was lamb meat. I was sensitive at the smell that I really didn’t like the meat of goat or sheep. I had the meat of goat and sheep quite often in Central Asia. So, when I came to China, I was happy to run away from lamb meat. But soon I realized I still had to eat lamb cause someplace was Muslim area in west China. I just tried to breathe with the only mouth to avoid the smell.

Sometimes a small village had a beautiful scenery.

Mostly it was semi-desert and lonely road though.

I really liked Chinese foods. Definitely, the best food is Korean food for me cause I am Korean. Except Korean food, I felt that Chinese foods are the best in the world. Their foods were quite different from Korea that it was really interesting to try.
But this best food was sold in uncomfortable places so many times. Chinese restaurant was very chaotic for me. People made a huge sound when they ate cause they didn’t close their mouth. Also, they kept spitting. And they smoked at the inside of the restaurant. They had a strong accent that it was very loud when they talked. People threw garbage on the table and on the floor that everywhere there was garbage in the restaurant. And all those things were mixed always in one place. It really happened at one time together people smoking, spitting, throwing garbage everywhere, making big noise for eating, speaking loud, ….Sometimes I felt too chaotic to eat at the restaurant that I asked to take away to eat in the hotel room. But it was not possible to run away from the sound of spitting. People spit endlessly that even I heard at the hotel room while eating.

When I was in Latin America, I had to hear boys making a kissing sound at me all the time. In China, I had to hear spitting sound all the time. The difference was Chinese spit just for themselves, not at me.

One time in the hostel, I saw a young Korean traveler eating with making a big sound. And I was thinking Korean would be similar to Chinese. I was sure I made a big sound during eating when I was in Korea. But I had learned at some point that to make a noise during eating was not the good manner in many countries. So I tried to eat quietly. Then now the sound people making during eating was bothering me. Weird..

When I was worried about where to sleep, I found this hotel in a very small village. The toilet was outside but it was a quite warm place to sleep.

Chinese Nomad wore a green long coat and it looked very cool(I mean awesome).

Sometimes I paid like $15 for a good hotel. But if I couldn’t reach to the hotel, I used to sleep around the gas station. It was a small gas station in a village. I asked to pitch my tent around the gas station. They told me it was so cold that I should sleep on the inside.
Although China had a big population, I had felt it was empty cause the density was not that high. Many times I felt like I was passing a ghost town cause they closed shops so early like 9 or 10 pm. It was Christmas Eve but all the restaurant was already closed that I bought my dinner from a grocery shop. Yes, this was my Christmas Eve Dinner.

And this was my Christmas Eve free hotel. I could sleep at the next heater that it was a quite good place.

At Christmas day, I was cycling to the east. China was Buddhist country that they didn’t care about Christmas, which was good for me who was staying alone that I didn’t need to feel lonely. When I bought some emergency foods at the gas station, they gave me an apple. I heard they usually gave an apple as Christmas gift. But I didn’t know I would get it. So it was a surprising gift to me.

I hoped everybody had A Merry Christmas.

This was quite interesting!

There were many minorities in China. So, I could see suddenly different hat or clothes.

A farmer was preparing the winter.

I got always scared when I saw a car accident. I wished nothing happened to me when I saw this kind of thing. But my wish didn’t last long.

There were many trucks and they dropped sands. And the edge of the road became muddy. I had to cycle on this black side cause I couldn’t cycle in the middle of the road. At some point, suddenly the road became like the ice that it was too slippery because trucks kept moving and pressuring the side road and it made the road very slippery like the ice. I couldn’t control the balance that I was hitting the road too strongly. I couldn’t stand up although my bicycle and bags were in the middle of the road. If there was a car moving very fast just behind me, I could be hit, which would be always the worst thing. But there was no any car that I was fine. But it was too painful that I couldn’t feel anything on my knees that I just lay down on the road. Other cars went over me slowly. Then local people came and collected all my things to the side of the road and helped me to move to the side. After 10 minutes, I could feel my knee. Then the people from the garage call me to wash with hot water at their place cause my clothes became very dirty from the mud.
From central China, there was always dust on the road and I used to see this kind of mud road sometimes, which made me too scared.

After the big accident, I started cycling again. Yes, it was really painful. But this was my life on the road. I was sick, but I had to keep moving because I didn’t have any home near.
I really wanted to get to Xian on that day. I went to the highway because it looked like there was no such a small road. But at the tollgate, they didn’t let me go. Always small roads were more dangerous, but they didn’t agree. So I had to go around and went to up this one mountain

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I want to show how Thailand hotels look like. I have cycled in South Thailand through villages and cities. I tried to avoid the touristic spot that most of the hotels are a bit difficult to reach if you don’t have your own vehicle. Enjoy!

14 Hotel & Resort Tour in Thailand - YouTube

Here is the list of Thailand Hotel, Resort, Condo, and Hostel on the video.

1. Narttavee Resort
Location : A small village
Price : $19 (600฿)

2. Thachana Garden Resort
Location : Next to Highway
Price : $12.5 (400฿)

3. Laem Thong Seafood Resort
Location : Next to the road
Price : $32 (1000฿)

4. Laem Pho Beach Resort
Location : Next to the road
Price : $20 (700฿)

5. Rim Nam Lomyen Resort
Location : Next to the road
Price : $13.5 (450฿)

6. Gozone Condotel
Location : A bit far from the city center
Price : $15 (450฿)

7. Sichon Resort
Location : Village
Price : $16.5 (550฿)

8. Oak Nat Coffee and Resort
Location : Next to the road
Price : $14 (450฿)

9. Wannachart Boutique Resort
Location : A Small Town
Price : $19 (600฿)

10. Supachai Inn
Location : A Big City
Price : $15 (470฿)

11. Huasai Palm Inn
Location : Next to the road
Price : $14 (450฿)

12. Kradangnga Resort
Location : Small Village
Price : $12.5 (400฿)

13. PAK-INN HOSTEL HAT YAI
Location : Big City
Price : $6.2 (200฿)

14. DCondo Karnjanavanich
Location : Big City
Price : $20 (640฿)

The post 14 Hotel & Resort in Thailand appeared first on Cycling Around The World.

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It was not much difficult to get out of Urumqi although it was a big city. Usually to enter into a big city is difficult, but to get out of the city is easier. I saw many people dancing together with the music at the park in the morning and I thought they had so healthy life.
Before the dark, I stopped at a tollgate and asked a police officer for the place to sleep around. Then he said he was not authorized here. So he introduced me to the charger of the tollgate. To set up a tent in the empty room was not possible that he suggested me to sleep in the forest which was at the next. The ground level was not flat for the sleeping and it was really cold. So I decided to keep cycling. Then the police car followed me behind and told me there is no place to sleep around that I should sleep around the police station, 3 km (1.8 mi) far away. And then they followed me by their car the behind.

It was freezing cold night that they suggested me to sleep inside of the office. I was really happy that I could sleep warmly.

Camping at Chinese Police Station (English CC) - YouTube

Vlog

There was a cafeteria for police officers and they let me had dinner. It was my first time to try Chinese flower bun. It didn’t have any taste. But the food was really spicy so it was good to neutralize the spicy taste.

At the next morning, I dressed warmly. The heat usually goes out from the top of the head. One time there was a picture that a baseball player dropped cabbage from his cap while throwing a ball. The reason he had that was to reduce the heat. In the winter, it is important to cover something on the head to keep the heat. I tried a hat and others but it pressed too much when I wore together with a helmet. So my favorite thing to wear was this thin red rain jacket’s hood. It prevented the wind, kept the heat, and looked cool like Superman.

Along the road, there was a cemetery. It seemed it belonged to Chinese Muslim for there was Arabic on the tombstone. It would sound weird if I say “Many tombs are very interesting all over the world.” Anyhow, it would be interesting if there is a picture collection of the world’s tomb cause the tomb represented their nature, culture, and human.

I had spent much money on winter gear recently in Urumqi. But it was not warm enough. My fingers and toes were still suffering. This was my second time to cycle in the winter. The first time was in Russia, Finland, and Poland for five months. This time was in Kazakhstan and China. This winter was the same as the previous winter that I had to fight against having frozen fingers and toes.

To cycle on a winter morning was really painful. But still, I loved the morning. The morning was the best time of the life and thankfully I had it every day. I became free from the pain in the afternoon as the temperature went up.

There were many wind powers on the way to Turpan, the next city. This place was known for strong wind. Luckily I didn’t have strong wind.

Before the city, I saw many people planting and I realized a really weird thing. There was no any single plant around. Whether semi-desert or red desert dune, I saw always plants. But this place didn’t have any life on the ground. I had a question that it was my first time to see the land without any plant. I wondered that how this place would be changed after a few years.

Approaching the city, suddenly I saw many trees and grasses. It was surprising that Chinese city’s road was a bit similar to Duch road. There were very good paved cyclist roads many times next to the road. Chinese usually rode an electric bicycle, motor bicycle, and scooter.

I had met Chinese travelers at the hostel while registering. They were drinking a very strong one. They gave me a small amount but I couldn’t finish it. My throat was just burning!

Strongest Drink in my life (English sub) - YouTube

vlog

The dog and cat got along well. The cat was really friendly that she crawled to my bed in the morning. To start the morning with the cat meant lucky day.

Chinese travelers and I would have the tour together to visit ruins. Before going there, we had a nice lunch. It was called Dapanji which made of the chicken, potatoes, peppers, and vegetable. It was Xinjiang province’s cuisine. This was not the food I can order only for myself cause it was a big dish. I was happy that there were Chinese friends to eat together.

We walked around the ruins. To be honest, it was difficult to guess what this was in the past. I needed more imagination.

We had a hotpot for dinner. It was not my first time to have it. When I was looking for a restaurant with the traveler in Urumqi, we walked in conveyor-belt hotpot restaurant. I had never been coveyor-belt sushi even before. So I was really excited at that time. I had my own pot in front of me on an electric stove and there were skewers with meat and vegetable going around. At that time I didn’t know the food I had was called hotpot.

Now I knew hotpot was very popular food to have with friends and family in China. This time we shared the pot together. One side was spicy soup and the other side was non-spicy one. The soup was good from the beginning. After soaking so many vegetable and meat, the soup turned to fantastic taste. I did love so much hotpot while traveling in China. I really liked to eat with people though. To have a hotpot was like eating Korean bbq (Samgyupsal).

It looked like I had so many skewers. But trust me it was just distortion of wide angle lens.
Chinese beer was really weak that usually, it was only 2.5~3.2%??. I really didn’t feel the alcohol. Later I got one tip. If I drank so fast Chinese beer, then I could have a similar experience of having 5% beer.

On the way back, we saw bbq fish. It looked interesting that we ordered it. I liked it but Chinese travelers told me it was too simple. The way of bbq reminded me of Masai having bbq on the street. It looked quite similar.

When I came back to the hostel, I found there were two traveling bicycles. At the next morning, I met them while having breakfast. They were brothers from France and headed to Shanghai (or Beijing? cannot remember exactly) I went out for the tour with these two cyclists cause Chinese travelers wanted to go other places. Before we were heading, we had lunch on the street.

The boy was wearing special Chinese pants that there was a big hole in the middle so that he could easily poop or pee anytime he wanted. I thought it was really good to wear it than to use chemical diaper if he only wears at his house. But if he wears in the city, then um…
I saw sometimes kids just pooping and peeing in the middle of the city because these pants gave them freedom. Usually, it happened in a small city more than a big city though. My travel friend told me she saw a kid pooping while she was eating the food at the restaurant.

We were about to head to Flaming Mountains but it was really difficult to go. Nobody spoke English and google translator or map didn’t help to communicate. After taking several buses, we just gave up and visited a historic site around the city. This was similar to what I saw in Uzbekistan. The inside was quite simple but the entrance was $10. I thought it was too expensive compared to what I saw.

I bought their traditional bread which was similar to Central Asia. I had seen this stove since Armenia.
I had found Chinese bread from the grocery shop were too sweet. I heard Asian eat very sweet bread. European bread spoiled me to hate sweet bread that I really liked the bread like above the picture which didn’t have sweet taste.

Finally, I got a package!!!!! I had a long story about it. My tire was broken at the side, which kept making a flat tire. I bought a tire for $3 as an emergency. Then I ordered a new tire, rim tape, and a bicycle computer through online to German friend. And then he sent to Dushanbe’s hostel from Germany with DHL. But I didn’t get it in Dushanbe after a while. I went to the post office and they told me it was sent back because the name of a receiver was different so they kept it for two weeks at the office and then just sent back without any notification to me or him. The problem was the guest houses in Dushanbe didn’t put any signboard outside, so it looked like just someone’s house. Luckily(?) German friend got the package back at his house.
This time I asked him to send to the hostel of Turpan, China. But it didn’t arrive again. The problem was the hostel was about to close for the winter season. I asked the hostel’s owner to call DHL. Then she said it just arrived in the office but they didn’t know when it would send to the hostel. So I asked her to tell them I would go there to pick it up. When I went there, I couldn’t communicate. They said I cannot go in. But then someone helped me with the paper which hostel’s owner wrote for me. After waiting outside without knowing what’s going on, finally, I got the package from some worker. I felt so lucky to have it. If the delivery guy found the hostel closed at the next day, they would send back to Germany again.

I couldn’t believe this $3 cheap tube was so strong at a dirt road in Pamir Highway. It was like my life. Who knew I could travel around the world with this weak body. haha. By the way, it was really difficult to take away because the rubber was very tough. Maybe that’s the reason it lasted long enough although it was too cheap.

My chain kept jumping these days that it was quite dangerous to cycle. For example, at the corner or crossing road, I started pedaling with thinking a car was coming a bit far from that it was enough time to cross. But then my chain was jumping and I was stuck middle of the road. In this case, the car could hit me.
I tried to fix it by myself but it was difficult that French guy helped me. I cut one chain out. But he told me it would keep jumping until I just change to a new chain. I would buy a chain, cassette, and crankset in the next big city.

Why bus drivers don't take us? (English sub) - YouTube

Vlog of Turpan. I don’t have vlog anymore cause I lost all my videos which I kept on my portable hard drive cause it was broken.

It was the last day of the hostel. If I came here in spring or autumn, it would be so good. But when I was there, it was really cold. The toilet was outside. At least there was hot water to take shower. But before the shower or after the shower it was super cold. Especially in the morning, to brush teeth and wash the face with the cold water at the basin was challenging. I understood why the hostel closed it in the winter.
By the way, people shouldn’t visit here in the summer because Turpan is one of the hottest places in the world.
I was sure that French cyclists would go very fast that I said goodbye to them and started at my own speed.

This was the place where French guys and I tried to come by bus the day before. But actually, it didn’t need to come by bus because it was on our way to the next city. It was a touristic spot because it was said the place looked like lava flowing. I was not sure it was worth to visit by complicating bus. At this time I didn’t need to buy the ticket cause I could just see from far away. Around this place, there was a really strong wind that it was difficult to cycle.

I was about to visit Bezeklik Thousand Buddha Caves cause the name sounded very interesting. But the way to the attraction was really amazing like the heaven, just fantastic!!

I thought there were thousand caves. In reality, the picture was all and even some of the room were closed. The entrance fee was $13. I had noticed that the entrance fees were very expensive in China whether it was simple or amazing.
In many countries, the government gave local people a big discount for the entrance fee of the historic place. Many travelers have told me it was unfair that foreigners had to pay a lot more than local people. I had a different opinion that I agree with their policy because local people were the one who maintained this all ruins and they paid tax all their life for the country.
But in China, there is no any discount for local people and even the entrance is very expensive. I heard that some Chinese people shared how to sneak in some places on the internet.

(At the beginning of the trip in China, I had visited many attractions. But later I gave up because I had realized I spent much money on the entrance fee. Sometimes it was worth, sometimes it wasn’t. Later I only visited if it is the really important place. )

After touring, I saw French guys again. They were already finishing tour caves and sand dune. They told me they saw me arriving from the top of the dune. After taking the picture together, they left and I climbed to the sand dune.

The scenery was really amazing. I really wanted to recommend any cyclist to visit this route. But I doubted about paying $13 to see a few rooms in Bezeklik Thousand Buddha Caves.

*Warning*
(The next pictures are about the toilet. Please scroll down quickly with looking through half-closed eyes if you are eating something.)

I wanted to use the toilet. But when I went there, I got shocked. This was the toilet I saw only on the internet. I had paid $13 for the entrance. But this was what I got back. Fortunately, big tour groups all left. So I could have some privacy.
There was one weird thing that in China, people didn’t close the door in the public toilet sometimes. I got surprised when I entered the toilet cause I had to see people peeing and pooping. I understood the door could be broken sometimes and they hurried that they couldn’t hold the broken door. But sometimes they opened the door even it was not broken.  Actually, they didn’t not only open the toilet door but also hotel’s room door too. It was not that cheap hotel, but around $15 with modern design. But still, people opened their door sometimes. So the noise from TV and talk went around the corridor and other rooms. And I felt weird to pass someone’s room opened.

This was another unique toilet in the west north China. There was a long connecting tunnel under the toilet. So sometimes I pee while someone’s pee was flowing. As you know, poop cannot flow. So usually it was stuck there like the above picture. If it was a bit good toilet, the water was flowing automatically every some time from the end.
There was one weird thing that Malaysia had a similar thing. When I took the shower at the hostel, I found the tunnel was connected on one side. For example, those silver tunnel on the picture was much smaller on the one side corner and it was connected to all bathrooms. So I had to see someone’s water flowing while taking shower and I added my shower water on that. You know girls could have a period while they travel. Imagine someone’s blood is flowing in front of you while you talking shower at the hostel. I had a chance to go to a very nice gym in the capital of Malaysia for free. Even there was a tunnel at the side that I saw people’s water flowing in front while having the shower. I was not sure why Malaysia had public bathrooms like this.  While writing this post, I have realized maybe it was from Chinse immigrants. (In Malaysia, there are local Malay, Chinese Malaysian, and Indian Malaysian) Now I am confused Korean have this shared tunnel drain system, too. I was away from home for a long time that I cannot remember.

I wondered all this area would be turned to the sand dune in the future.

After the beautiful desert area, I passed a very pretty village. They had unique paintings on the wall. While looking for a restaurant, I met French guys again.

They were already invited by local people while looking for a restaurant as well. We got the bread, raisins, and tea. After farewell, they left first and I cycled with my slow speed.

The next village had a cultural painting as well.

I decided to stop at the next village that I asked local people to set up my tent in their yard. But local lady suggested me to sleep inside. She was starting cooking that I helped her. The oven was connected to the room that she could heat the room while cooking.

She had two beautiful kids. She showed me the video of some ceremony in the village. The way they greeted was really interesting in the video.

A lady put my head scarf later. Late night it seemed she was picking lice from her daughter’s hair. So, I guessed she was worried that I would get some lice? Or she was sincerely Muslim that she thought I should cover when her husband arrived. I just thought that she was just worried about me having lice.

Thanks to them, I could stay warm last night.

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Unboxing Xiaomi Mi In-Ear Headphones Pro and comparison Pro HD - YouTube

Best cheap Earphones: Xiaomi mi In-Ear Headphones Pro

You can check my unboxing video and comparison about Pro HD.

Xiaomi Mi In-Ear Headphones Pro : https://amzn.to/2O9TiWz
Xiaomi Mi In-Ear Headphones Pro HD : https://amzn.to/2uK1Fjr

I am a budget traveler that Xiaomi has helped me a lot for my traveling. I have used Xiaomi phone and earphones for over two years and I am satisfied. Xiamoi is like Decathlon for me, which makes my travel easy with little money. (Decathlon is a cheap European Sports shop. )

Mi In-Ear Headphones Pro Silver Dual Driver Earbuds with Mic, including 3 size earbuds (US Version with Warranty)
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Last update was in: August 11, 2018 8:20 pm

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  • The wired remote comes with three sleek buttons support answering calls, music playback and volume adjustment with android devices. But volume adjustment is not supported on iOS devices
Xiaomi Hybrid Earphones XHXKJ Mi In-ear Headphone Pro HD Version 3.5mm 1 More Circle Iron Headset 1 used from $24.08
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Last update was in: August 11, 2018 8:20 pm

  • Dynamic driver technology is implemented into a variety of products including loudspeakers, headphones and in-ear monitors
  • Get every song as a subtle story via rich and stable effect of unique balanced armature driver
  • Details of frequencies riched by triple driver: dual dynamic and balanced armature
  • Balanced armature drivers are primarily used in hearing aids, but they also see extensive use in modern in-ear monitors

The post Best Cheap Earphones : Xiaomi Mi In-Ear Headphones Pro Unboxing, Review, and Comparison with Pro HD appeared first on Cycling Around The World.

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Crossing Khorgos border, I arrived in Chinese immigration at the dark. As I heard, they would close the border after the dark. But thankfully they were still working. Actually, I was the only customer there. It seemed that Kazakhstan and China border connected the system so that they can wait for the person who just crossed the border. The immigration officer asked me many things and I had realized she was just so curious about my traveling. Once I left immigration’s property, suddenly many guys exchanging money came to me. Thanks to them, I could exchange left Kazakhstan money to Chinese money.

Cycling on the Chinese main road, I was just so touched, moved, and impressed by the fact that I was back to the continent where I was belonged to. I left home in 2010 and I lived in Canada for a year with a working holiday visa. And then I had cycled over five years through North America, Latin America, Africa, Europe, the Middle East, and Central Asia without going back home. I am not from China, but Korea. But still, I was so excited that I was back in Asia! I was not sure what kind of feeling I would have when I am back in my country, Korea.

The road was well paved and so clean. My first image of China was “Clean and Tidy” at the border town. But it was weird that it was like a ghost city that there were not many cars or people.

I had realized suddenly two hour was different from Kazakhstan. China is a huge country but they have only one-time zone. For example, the country like the U.S or Brazil had different time zones at the inside of the country. However, China only followed one-time zone. In the past, they used different time zones as well. But they decided to use only one-time zone to unify the country as a communist. I heard the western Chinese followed their own time zone. But in reality, they followed mostly Beijing Time zone. So I decided to follow also Beijing Time zone to not be confused.

Actually, it was a big benefit for me, a cyclist traveler. For example, I started cycling at like 10 am. When the sun goes up at 7 am and goes down at 5 pm, I could cycle only for seven hours (cycling from 10 am to 5 pm). But when the sun goes up at 9 am and goes down at 7 pm, I could cycle for nine hours (10 am to 7 pm). So as a person depending on the sunlight, it was super awesome that the sun goes up at 9 am in this area.

I was already in the city that it would be difficult for camping. So I was looking for a hotel, but all the hotels were expensive maybe it is because of the border city. Luckily I found the hotel for $15. It had a bit bad mold smell and the paint on the wall came off. But I was still happy that I had a safe and warm place to sleep.

It was just around 10 pm, but the street was really quiet and most of restaurants were already closed. Thankfully there was one restaurant opened. And this was my FIRST MEAL IN CHINA!!!!

It was hilarious that to use chopsticks was so challenging. I kept missing noodles. I had only few times to meet Korean or have Korean food last a few years. But I guessed the main problem was the material. It was very thick and slippery and noodle itself was slippery too. Korean chopsticks were metal and very thin. Someone told me Koreans were only Asian using metal chopsticks. I searched for it and the reason Korean use stainless chopsticks were that King was afraid of getting poison in the past. So when they use silver chopsticks, they can see it is poisoned or not. But silver is very expensive so normal people who wanted to live like a king used stainless chopsticks. It was said stainless chopsticks is cleaner and more hygienic. But I heard Korean chopsticks were more difficult for foreigners. But for me, Chinese chopsticks were too hard. Even I had the pain on my hand that I tried stretching my hand while eating. By the way, the taste was really amazing that I was so happy to find this restaurant.

Crossing Chinese Border-Travel vlog in China (Around the world by bicycle) - YouTube

At that time, I made several vlogs. This was the video about crossing the border.

I was about to buy a simcard before leaving the city. But it was difficult to communicate that I used google translator. There were three main telecom companies in China. As I heard, it could require lock phone or local address. So I decided to use China Unicom. But WOW! This was the most complicating sim card I’ve ever used that I could never understand how it worked. When I wanted to have top up, they said I had to make a new sim card. So I made a new one, but then I found I could have top up later. But then I could have only the same amount as first. But then next time I could top up different, but then other time I couldn’t and so on. Every time I had serious challenge to charge money.

To buy a simcard meant connecting to the world for me. So I was relaxed after having the simcard and I cycled to get out of the city. It was interesting to see the traffic board that they used two different languages.

I had a very clean hotel with the same money I paid for an old hotel in the border town. They just opened the hotel, so everything was clean. But there was one weird thing. The hotel’s owner asked me to close curtain after the dark cause the police can see it. I was thinking maybe they didn’t have a license to accept the foreigners.

First day of Cycling in China-Travel vlog (Around the world by bicycle) - YouTube

Vlog about my first day cycling in China.

I had stayed two days more at the hotel. At the next day, I walked around the small town. Usually, for one or two weeks at the country I just entered, I felt like I was walking around Disneyland because everything was new to me that I was super excited to see them.

Xinjiang Chinese Street Food -Travel vlog in China (Around the world by bicycle) - YouTube

Video about my first Chinese Street Food

Having some street snacks, I wanted to have a proper meal that I went to a restaurant. I didn’t know how to choose the food, so I asked for the same food as other people eating. It looked similar to Lagman, Central Asian food.

He showed me how to it. Somehow it was very different from Central Asian one. They served noodle and sauces separately. It was juicier and chewy with lots of vegetables and meat. I really loved it so much. I must stay this was one of the best noodles I had. (I want to go back one day to eat this noodle.)

Next day the hotel’s owner asked me to join the wedding ceremony. They ordered lots of food and introduced me. But I couldn’t see the wedding that it seemed it would start very late. While having lunch with them, I had learned how to count the number with a hand because Chinese counted the number very different way with the hand. I was very confused that I didn’t know how long it would take time to remember. There was one funny thing that I watched North Korean defector counted the number with Chinese way on YouTube. The reason was they usually waited in China three to four years to make money to go to South Korea. So they were used to Chinese way to count the number with the hand. But I was curious that North Korean people in their land used Chinese way or just normal way.

It was the end of October, but everything was already covered by the snow. The landscape was very beautiful but I was a bit worried about cycling.

Although I came to a new country, I still saw a yurt which I saw from Central Asia.

Definitely, the best scenery was the snow for me.

I was not sure when they had all this snow. My favorite car was a snowplow in the winter. I loved you so much and I thanked you so much ever!

I was hungry and cold. So I stopped to wear one more layer of socks and a jacket and to eat some cookies

It seemed I had to cycle on that bridge. But how?

In the first year, I didn’t like raining or cycling on the mountain. As time went, I was used to it. But I had never liked a tunnel on my trip. When a car passed, the sound is too loud and echoing. It was like the monster chasing me to kill. I was too nervous that I fell off. Luckily there was no any car behind, so I stood up quickly.

The worst part of the tunnel was when a car honked a horn. It was like the Grim Reaper shouting “Yo What’s up. I am here to take you!” THE HELL SOUND TOO LOUD!

Unbelievable! I couldn’t believe that I was on the bridge after the tunnel. Sometimes we already got there without knowing how to get there.

WOW CHINA! This was a really long bridge! They didn’t want to make the road on the mountain, so just built the long long bridge.

Oh my goodness. Again tunnel?

After the tunnel, this time the stunning scenery surprised me.

I was not sure where to sleep tonight. There were some yurts. I didn’t want to set up my tent on the snow and I didn’t want to crash their house. But the next town was too far to reach today. So I decided to go back near to the tunnel because I saw some building there.

It was like a small old hotel. There was no electricity, running water, and a toilet inside. But the room was $30. It was too much. But thanks that I could set up my tent at the inside of the building after paying $5. Setting my tent, I realized that I forgot one pole at Kyrgyzstan local people’s house last time. However, I could still use my tent with only two poles. The inside of the building was still very cold. But it was better than outside with the snow. The best part of today was I could buy a nice hot meal.

One of hardest day with long tunnels and snow(한글자막) travel vlog in China/Around the world by bicycle - YouTube

Vlog (I found this video was a bit more interesting than other vlogs)

I wore layers to start cycling.

Fingers were really cold that I covered the hand with my rain jacket to protect from the wind. I wanted to buy special gloves which I can install like a winter glove for a scooter. But I was not sure where to buy.

The scenery was so beautiful that it was such a big morning gift.

I had lunch at the restaurant just next to the road. But the meat was a bit different. When I was about to pay, they asked me almost two times more money than the usual meal. I thought they were cheating me and I got annoyed. But then they pointed their finger at a horse picture. I realized it was expensive meat. Even if they cheated on me, I shouldn’t be angry or upset much. I thought the lack of thing on my trip or maybe in my life was patience. I wish I am more tolerant.

Having self-reflection on a nice paved road, I saw some weird creature.

It looked a bit horse somehow. But it was the Bactrian camel, living in Central Asia and North Asia.

“Wow you look so weird!”

“You too! You looked very weird too. You have a very short neck! Can you see well around?”

“Yeah it is okay. But wow you have so many furs on your neck”

“Hell! You don’t have any fur?? Aren’t you cold?”

“Yeah it is freezing cold. So I wore many clothes.”

“What’s clothes?”

“Never mind. Take care!”

“You ugliest, take care too!”

It was really long downhill that my fingers were frozen. I cycled over 130 km (80 mi) until 10 pm because it was too cold to do camping and the hotel was really far away.

My fingers are frozen!! - travel vlog in China (Around the world by bicycle) - YouTube

Vlog of the day.

At the next day, there were endless cotton farms with the sand.

It seemed it was a very dry place?

Cotton was stuck on the ground for so many km endlessly. I thought it was waste.

I was about to buy petrol for my stove at a gas station, but they denied. There were many restaurants near so I went to one of them. I did love it so much. It was so yummy.

Again I was struggling with Chinese chopsticks. Then the owner gave me the fork although I didn’t ask. It seemed they even could see I was having a problem. haha.

It was a bit warmer than the day before so I wanted to have wild camping. But I really didn’t know how I could do it because there was a guardrail next to the road and then there was a fence as well. I could lift all my bags and bicycle to go over a guardrail, but it was impossible to go further because of the fence.

The next city was too far that I decided to put my tent around exit because a car cannot see me easily. I moved all my bags and bicycle to down road and set up my tent.

Sleeping Just Next Road Alone??? -Travel vlog in China (Around the world by bicycle) - YouTube

Vlog

At the next day, I succeeded to get the petrol. The staff asked me why I needed it. I explained it was for cooking by using a translator. Then he went out to the entrance and put his social id or driver card(?) on the machine. Then he put his card again on the machine when he put petrol on my stove’s bottle. It seemed it was not simple to give petrol. That’s why I was denied at the other day.

I was really hungry but there was no near restaurant that I just had snacks at the gas station. Thankfully they gave me soya milk and orange as a gift.

When I was about to the enter the city, I saw the truck tip over. I did remember this car because when the car was passing me, cotton was flying around like flowers flying in the air. I did hope everybody was okay and the car was okay too.

Passing Truck tip over - Travel vlog in China - YouTube

Vlog

At the next morning, I had a big problem that I couldn’t take any money from ATM because it was empty. There was no other bank I could use with my foreigner card. I had only $1 left. I went to a market and bought a tomato, onion, mushroom, and rice for 75 cents, which I would use for a dinner.

On the way back to my bicycle, I saw people playing a traditional board game. I knew how to play because I had learned it from my grandfather.

I kept seeing people picking cotton.

But I saw this big machine to collect cotton. Then why people picking with their hands?? I was not sure why it was like this.

There was no doubt that cotton was very unique, beautiful, and useful plan.

I was not sure where to set up my tent tonight. Then I saw some broken fence. So I tried to go far away from the main road. I cooked my dinner with what I bought on the day. I added soya sauce and salt. The juice from the vegetable made the meal so yummy that I did enjoy my dinner at my tent.

No money on ATM. What can I buy with $1 in china? (En CC/한글자막) - YouTube

Vlog

It was a really cold night that I wore more clothes during the night.

There was frost because of the cold night. One of the hardest things to sleep on the tent in the winter was to go out from a sleeping bag in the morning. It was just so painful.

It was difficult to find a restaurant that I had a very late lunch. It was so yummy that I was so happy after the meal.

While I was cycling happily, I saw one adult picking cotton with a child wearing cute clothes. I knew I shouldn’t judge people with just what I saw. But suddenly I thought so many things. I didn’t work hard for a long time. I just updated my blogs and did small things to look for small money and I had traveled for so many years and had such an easy life. I didn’t really struggle for money much. So when I saw people working too hard like just next to a street or foreigner worker such as in Dubai working Monday to Sunday without such a human right, I felt very shame about my life.

I did know the life is not fair because we started differently and chose different thing. But this was really shame to see people working hard while I just enjoyed my easy life. Someone told me we all are different that I didn’t need to feel shame, but enjoy my life cause my job was to share the story with people. Yeah,..

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UNIQUE Myanmar STREET FOOD TOUR in Yangon - YouTube

Here are five dishes you must try if you go to Yangon, Myanmar.  Myanmar Foods are really delicious. It seems Myanmar people really cook well. Two things seriously you must try is Pickled Tea Leaf Salad and Mohinga. Specially Pickled Tea Leaf Salad can go really well with beer.

1. Pickled Tea Leaf Salad (Lahpet)
It is a very unique food because they use the tea leaf as a salad. Myanmar is one of a few countries which eat the tea as the food in the world. Fermented Pickled Tea with nuts and vegetables has the very unique taste. Especially this is really good with the beer.
Location in Yangon: https://goo.gl/maps/4NKN8B6wHiS2

2. A typical Myanmar meal
If you order the main dish like meat or fish, you would get side dishes like salad, soup, and vegetables for free. You can have it for lunch or dinner. Usually, Myanmar people cook well that always it has good taste.
Location in Yangon: https://goo.gl/maps/USDnf3xG1KA2

3. Noodle Salad
It is served with salad, vegetable, and a few different seasonings. This dish is good for a snack cause it is a light meal.
Location in Yangon:https://goo.gl/maps/qptauzd7nHJ2

4. Pork Offal Skewers (Wet Thar Dote Htoe)
It is pork offal on a stick in light soy sauce. The meat placed on the stick includes the internal organs of the pig including its intestine, liver, kidney, spleen, heart, lungs, tongue and even the skin and cartilage. The soup has really deep flavor. At first, you dip the stick into the soup and then dip into chili sauce.
Location in Yangon: https://goo.gl/maps/RzqYL1r1y3n

5. Mohinga
It is a rice noodle and fish soup. It is the national dish you must try if you go to Myanmar. Usually, it is eaten for breakfast. Every region cooks the different way that if you travel whole Myanmar, you can taste different Mohinga.
Location in Yangon: https://goo.gl/maps/LhLnNZCBEAF2

The post Top 5 Best Myanmar Street Foods You Must Try 2018 appeared first on Cycling Around The World.

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I was so excited to enter into Kazakhstan which was larger than Western Europe and 9th largest land in the world.

But my excitement was erased by the snow with the strong headwind. I could not see the front clearly and my clothes and bags were covered by the snow.

I reached a small village after fighting against the snow.

I was cycling slowly to look around the village and saw some family around their garage. I asked for pitching my tent at the inside. Then they invited me into the house. The dinner was quite big portion with a warm tea.

The calm morning was starting and the road was busy with children going to school. Their clothes were very bright in the white and dark village.

It was very quiet morning on the way I got out of the village.

Nomad leading sheep greeted at me kindly and two sheepdogs were following them.

Nomad was so friendly that they even let me try to ride a horse. The one thing I really liked about Central Asia was I could get a chance to ride a horse sometimes. Also, it was very cheap and easy to hire a horse for hiking because there were everywhere horses.

I always so felt so peaceful and calm whenever I saw a horse on the field because it looked so free.

Nomad’s yurt was covered by the snow on the field far from the road.

I had to dress warmly because it was very cold. I wore long sleeve, winter jacket, long pants, and long waterproof pants. Just started cycling in the morning, I had to wear a red waterproof jacket as well. These waterproof pants and jacket were really good to keep the heat from the body. But as more I cycled, I took off the clothes one by one.  The only problem was to keep the heat on fingers and toes. I bought cheap winter gloves. But it was small that the glove didn’t help to keep the heat much. I would buy winter gears when I get to China.

There was one big hill from the morning that it helped me to stay warm cause I burned lots of energy.

After the hill, I cycled between valleys. I always enjoyed cycling on this kind of road, for curves were always fun. I could not guess what kind of scenery I would see after the curve so I always got surprised by a new scenery after turning on the curve.

After the valley, there was endlessly field. I found some old building made of sand. It was similar to what I saw in Sudan or Iran.

I left my bicycle on the road and walked into deep inside the field to check how it looked like.

There were some patterns. I could not know why it was made and when it was built as there was no any explanation around.

As I was about to go back, the scenery of my bicycle on the wide field looked so beautiful.

I faced camels suddenly in the middle of nowhere. I didn’t see real camels though. I thought maybe there were camels around.

Arriving in a small town, I was having very strong wind. I thought there was the storm coming. But later, it became calm.

I asked a few people to look for a bank and then I took some money from ATM.

I didn’t want to go out once I get an accommodation. So I bought the food before finding a hotel. I must say Shashlik, a meat bbq on a metal skewer, was fantastic tasty in Central Asia. All of the meat on the picture cost less than $2. After I got the food, I checked a few different hotels. I chose the hotel which had a room for $8 shared bathroom. During the night, I was wakened up with sweat as the heater was too strong. So, I had to open the window. I was curious that Kazakhstan was like Russia which must be very hot inside of house always. When I was in a Russian house in Russia, I had to wear summer clothes because of a very hot heater, which was good.

At the next morning, I found a nice road under the construction that there were only few cars. Later I was afraid that the road is not connected to the main road. I asked the road construction worker and he told me there would be no problem to reach my destination on this road.

Sometimes beautiful nature stayed with me for a while as like a best friend while cycling.

I wanted to arrive at my destination before the dark. But the last part was really bad and I had to go around many times.

Finally, I got to the city after the dark.

I was checking a few different hotels and then I found one restaurant. I decided to have dinner first because I was starving. The food was just amazing. There were many different foods on the menu as well. I felt like Kazakhstan had many good foods. But I would stay only for short-term that I couldn’t know many things about the country.

I got a bit expensive hotel for $18 with private bathroom since I stayed very cheap hotel last night.

They served a lot of foods into the room in the morning. It reminded me of Uzbekistan. Whether cheap or expensive hotel, the breakfast was a lot in Uzbekistan. I really loved a big breakfast on the day I had to cycle.

Although Kazakhstan was the ninth biggest country in the world, I could move to China with three days cycling only. On the bottom of the east south in Kazakhstan, there was a border to China. I thought it was too short to know. So I decided to stay at least two more days in a small city here.

Although it was a small town, there were many people and cars going around.

I had Shashlik and Laghman as a lunch. Laghman was my fav food in Central Asia. Every region cooked different ways, but it never ever disappointed me.  One funny thing was they served the beer with the straw.

On my last day, I had local beer and prepared to cross the border for the next day.

Sometimes I could see a vintage vehicle and it looked just awesome.

On the way to the border, there were so many corns on the road. Later I found the reason that there was a corn factory just next to the road. It seemed so many trucks kept going with corns and they dropped a lot of them on the road. I felt it was a bit of waste of corns. On the mountain area in Tajikistan, trucks dropped many small coals. I always wanted to pick when trucks drop something. haha.

When I arrived at the border, I heard that the border would close after the sunset. There were many people around and It was not that simple that it took the time at the immigration. I met a backpackers and he was waiting for a minivan to cross the border. I had realized that I had to go around about 8km (5mi) more because there was something between borders, which I didn’t know before. I tried to cycle so fast but there was a strong wind. I could see that the sun was about to disappear. I worried that I should set up my tent on the land between Kazakhstan and China. While cycling next to the fence, I was afraid and excited that the next country was just after this fence.

All of Asian and European cyclist I met took the train to skip western China. Only Jamy, British girl which I cycled together in Pamir, cycled all the way to South East Asia in China. I had only three months visa in China and I should cycle more than 6,000 km (3,728 mi) to South East Asia. According to the law, I could extend the visa. But still, 6,000 km sounded too much for only one country. I was not sure I could make it or maybe I would take the transportation like other cyclists. Anyway, I would try and see how it would go.

This was the time to say goodbye to Central Asia which was one of the most adventurous places on my trip. I really liked Central Asia so much. This was a very beautiful place. I would miss everything which I had in Central Asia. I sincerely thanked everything of Central Asia, which let me cycle safely. Now I needed to move to a new county, China! Yeah! But if they closed the border, I would go the next day?

Route
Days in Kazakhstan = 6 Days
Distance of cycling in Kazakhstan = 253 km (157 mi)
Expenditure in Kazakhstan = 96$
($1=331 Tenge)

The post (Kazakhstan) I am going to miss horses on the endless filed appeared first on Cycling Around The World.

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