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Biking the Xian city walls

Holy crap! I had no idea biking the Xian City walls was gonna be ridiculously hard! It was an incredibly hot day & my family thought it was nuts to go biking in that weather. Yep, they were right. 14kms for 1hr 20 mins under the hot summer sun almost killed me.
Highlights: If you go on a nicer time of day, its an excellent way to see the city. The Xian walls is an impressive fort, nicely preserved. The only remaining example of how ancient Chinese cities were fortified. The excursion offers great views & is an interesting way to experience their history.
Cast of Characters: just myself
Logistics/ Links: You don't need a guide for this one. We stayed at Jia He business hotel, it was centrally located. Walking distance to the Muslim quarter, McDonalds, shops, malls, the Drum tower & of course the City walls.
When: Biked it on a sunny, hot August afternoon in 2010. Earlier in the morning would probably be better. Then you can head out for breakfast at the Muslim quarter (or McDonalds, hehe). After that, go to see the ancient attractions like the Drum tower, the ancient mosque, markets etc. Be prepared for a lot of walking though.
Location: We came in through the south entrance to the City walls.
Cost: around $7 for entrance to the City walls + $31 for refundable bike deposit + $3 for the bicycle (100 mins)
Trip Report: I'm telling you 100 mins was not enough. I rented the bike at the corner. They told me 100 mins is enough to circle the wall. Took my bike back to my family, circled around them & taunted them a bit about how cool it was gonna be. We agreed to meet after 100 mins. So I started cycling away leisurely looking at sights, taking pictures of everything. Later on I realized I should not have goofed off for as long as I did. If you want to take lots of pictures & enjoy a nice ride, you'll probably just want to extend it. 

Entrance to Xian city wall. There's 4 entrances around town. I heard the south entrance was the best. This is the south entrance behind us.

City wall gates


On our way up

Mamu beyond. Yeah, I thought I was tough!

Wall perimeter

Pretty cool contrast of ancient & new Xian.

Mel goofing off.

Cannons!


Weapons!


My favorite picture of the wall perimeter

There's a little bike shop right there. I was getting freaked out because I didn't realize how slow I was. Towards the later half of the trip I was just pedaling like crazy.

Catapults!

Interesting looking weapons. I am really curious to see what sort of weapons they had at the Gubeikou Great Wall. They had a section closed off because it was used as weapon storage.

After a few minutes of biking, I started to get disoriented of where I was. Looked at the time & realized I had a zillion miles to go. I started panicking because the forts looked the same.

Thats my bike!!!

fortification

Some beautiful traditional homes right outside the wall.

This way to the exit
My brother decided to give the guy a break & test out his bicycling skills.

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