Tianmu Mountain

25th May 2013: hiking weekend

Departure: 6.00 pm; 25th

Return: 5.00 pm: 27th

Hiking hours: 7 hours day 1 / 2 hours day 2

Day 1
Departure by bus from Shanghai with twenty Chinese for 4 hours. Direction Tianmu Mountain National Nature Reserve. A vast green space, away from the hassles of the city.

We arrived at 2am in a small village. Camping in the parking lot (on very hard ground). You should not be cozy to go on camping with Chinese.

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At sunrise, breakfast, discovery of ancient Chinese toilets (I’ll let you make your own idea although I think you can never imagine such a thing).

Start our hike at 7:30 am by a sun and warm weather that is already beginning to be felt. We climb into the lush forest. After 2 hours of walking, we died of thirst but we must be careful because we hadn’t take enough water boohoo.

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Reached the summit at 11:30. Time to eat, still no water at the top (oh if I had listened to my mom I would have taken the sanitizing tablets!). Only boiling water and water that only local drink (yeah well I did not necessarily wanted to test it …). So despite, I choose the boiling water by 36 ° C outside.

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We leave in the direction of a lake. Arrival at the lake around 4.00 pm. Finally water !! A little tap to wash your face and great meal at the restaurant. Then camp still in the parking lot (the ground is hard …).


Day 2
Visit around the lake and back to Shanghai.


  • Not be squeamish
  • Always have sanitizing tablets
  • Bring antibacterial gel
  • The ground is hard, very hard, especially when you have no mattress.

On the shores of Jinji Lake

20th may 2013: Sunday walking around Jinji Lake

On this beautiful Sunday we went for a walk on the shores of Jinji Lake. This is a large lake, with very well fitted borders for walking. Here are some pictures.

In the evening we did not resist eating out in a restaurant, just to see some of the typical Asiatic food. So we went in the restaurants street along the lake. We ate very well, fish soup, spring rolls and dumplings.

Total cost: All for 136 Yuan (about 14 €).

Jinji-lake (1) Jinji-lake (16)


Jinji-lake (14)  Jinji-lake (8)

Jinji-lake (31) Jinji-lake (18)


Jinji-lake-W (2) Jinji-lake-W (3)

Jinji-lake-W (13) Jinji-lake-W (17)

Direction Shanghai

Departure: 17th May , 2013 10:00 am

Arrival: 18th May , 2013 9:00 am

Travel time: 12 hours of travel.

The journey began earlier, starting at 10:00 am from Villejuif, I took the taxi towards Charles de Gaulle airport. Boarding with China Eastern Airlines, luggage allowed: 1 baggage carry-on and 23kg baggage for the check-in.

I was not lucky, I had the place next to the toilet (suggestion: ask before a place far away from the toilet, especially if you are a light sleeper …). After 12h of an endless parade to the toilets (it does not stop more than 2 minutes).

I arrived in Shanghai. Stifling heat very wet and gray (tropical climate). I found my driver (Laurence kindly booked a private driver for me) towards Suzhou. I could already feel the language barrier, no dialogue possible between the driver and me, a simple indication with hand where I want to go written in Chinese.

Marina-Cove-Garden (4) Marina-Cove-Garden (5)

Marina-Cove-Garden (6)

Chinese visa

To enter China you must apply for a visa and it’s a long story … There are no less than 4 different visas for China. Touristic, business, student, permanent visa, etc, etc.

You must provide full administrative paper such as letter of invitation from the company or family, passport, visa application form (5-9 pages is requested for the visa).

Read carefully all the documents required. At the Chinese embassy they don’t help at all so, the best is to choose a private association they will help you (I did it at visa Lyon). I did it first at the Embassy. They asked me unnecessary paper to create my visa, I did not need those papers with the association…