Breakfast Alfresco

Well as much as I would love a good ole fry up right now, instead I tucked into spaghetti style noodles in a spicy soup with pickled vegetables and chunks of what I think was pork!

Dozycat Hostel

We have arrived in Gualin and are staying at the Dozycat Hostel, this is a bargain place to stay even with ensuite at £12 per night. I have stayed in many a worse place in Europe that cost a whole lot more (Hotel Medusa in Tirennia springs to mind!).

It has all the facilities you need, shower, laundry, kitchen, Internet etc etc. So if you are ever out this way and are looking for some budget accommodation check out the Dozycat Hostel!

Technology on the Shanghai -> Nanning Express

Welcome to the Shanghai -> Nanning Express!

We are now well into our journey to Gualin only about 3 hours or so to go assuming that we are on time. According to my guide book the journey should take 22 hours and not 24 as I had previously thought.

I managed to get the top bunk out of 3, which sounds bad but for some reason I like it up the top. Despite the lack of space to even sit up I can camp out with my gadgets and keep myself amused.

Unfortunately my sleep was not as good as it usually is in a train due to increased competition in the snoring department. I am clearly an amateur in comparison to my father-in-law and a stranger sharing our cabin with us. I am sure I would have won if I had a few beers before bed.

Technology rules this trip, iPhones and iPads are keeping us amused when the scenery isn't.

Leg #2 – Shanghai->Gualin

We made it to Shanghai without issue and are now waiting in the Shanghai South Railway Station so we can board the sleeper train K537 16:52 to Gualin.

This is the first time I have been to this particular railway station, and like some other new stations it reminds you more of an airport, it even has metal detectors and X-ray machines, a sign of thinks to come back home I'm sure.

Leg #1 Wuxi->Shanghai

The first leg of our Christmas Day journey begins at Wuxi Railway Station. Just a normal Saturday for the locals!

Once we get to Shanghai I believe we have to catch the Metro to Shanghai South Station before boarding a 24 hour train to Gualin.

Santa’s Cookie Grotto

While out wandering the streets of Wuxi this Christmas Eve I was struggling to find anything that would make it feel vaguely Christmassy. We happened to walk through the lobby of a large hotel and saw this Grotto made from Cookies. Sadly I was not allowed to take a bite, but photos were allowed.

In general the shops have a small amount of Christmas decorations and some are playing new mixes of songs such as Jingle Bells and We Wish You A Merry Christmas….I need to introduce them to Shakin' Stevens!