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Hello!

Welcome to Eat Well, Travel Often. I use this space to document my travels and hope you are inspired to get up and move!

The Great Wall

The Great Wall

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P1020766 The Great Wall of China...or if you're talking to Karl Pilkington, "The Alright Wall of China".  I'll will agree with the former in this case because, wow!  I'm not sure how you would build this today and to build something on this scale so long ago had to have involved Dumbledore somehow!  P1020776

There were two options to get to the top of the Wall - hike or cable car.  Which do you think we chose?  Correct!  Sit me down, take me up and let's get on with it!P1020784P1020802 P1020808 P1020809 P1020813 P1020821 P1020823

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We spent several hours at a small section of the wall that had both tourist and non-tourist sections.  We may have visited both...oops, I can't read??  Well, when we saw a group of 7 year olds walking back from the "restricted" section we knew we couldn't be shown up!  Onwards! P1020846 P1020850

We walked down a narrow path and quickly saw that this area was not kept at all.  It was nice to see the wall how it is naturally today - not rebuilt and set up for tourists, but the natural decay of it.  P1020856 P1020858

The further we walked the more rubble we saw, which gave it more character in my eyes.  We enjoyed the views and were able to see more of the wall from here...I can only imagine how beautiful it is when the leaves are changing color.  P1020864 P1020874

The Wall according to Joe:

The world’s longest graveyard…the stone snake…The Great Wall of China!  We’ve got to go!  Just think about it - walking on something that was built 1,000s of years ago.  

During some dynasties literally every man was forced to work on the wall to the point where farming was lost and women were afraid to have boys.  The jobs were that dangerous. 

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Ok, so yea The Great Wall. HUGE tourist trap, we are going to be packed in like sardines and struggle just to move through one section of the wall, right? WRONG. The lack of crowd at the Great Wall was one of the more surprising parts of the entire trip. We found plenty of spots to be alone, have some photo shoots and take in the sights together.

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The last renovation done on the wall was done in the 1980s. They have literally been continually working on sections of this wall for a millennia. It’s amazing. The part of the wall we were brought to was the renovated part. But if you walk far enough you can find your way to the run down part. I really wanted to go walking on this part to the next watch tower. (There are an estimated 25,000 watch towers on the wall. There must have been one every mile or half mile.) 

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We were a bit hesitant because it wasn’t the easiest or pleasant looking walk. But when we saw a group of twelve children, who couldn’t have been more than 10 years old trudging back from that watch tower the opposite way, it shamed us into doing it. 

The Great wall was AMAZING (Sorry, Karl Pilkington) I mean I got to walk on a wall that Genghis Khan’s Mongolian empire attacked - history nerd, I know.  

-J. Lav 

P1020891 P1020901We ventured to that last watch tower we could see and went no further because there was no "further".  It stopped there.  Or at least it was so destroyed that there was no way I was hiking it in my Steve Madden combat boots.  P1020905 P1020911 P1020914 P1020916 P1020917 P1020921 P1020923 P1020925 P1020926P1020929 P1020937

I specifically chose the Mutianyu area of the wall to visit because a little bird had told me about a toboggan that you could take back down to the village. Wonder of the world AND rides?! Sign me up!  I don't want to say that this was my favorite part of the day...but this was my favorite part of the day!  P1020940 P1020943 P1020944 P1020952

Shopping at the foot of the wall was a comedy show to say the least.  We played dress up and bargained with everyone on the street who swore their items were hand made!  Oh really, someone hand made this embroidered piece of art?...oh look 8,000 more are being sold at the vendor next to you for half the price!  P1020953 P1020954

Joe practiced his haggling and made some friends and enemies all at the same time with these great vendors!  But he came out a winner with some great souvenir items!P1020959 P1020961

Now this I believed was hand made, since I was able to watch him carve each piece.  We haggled less for these because we knew he had actually put time into each one - beautiful, right? P1020962

Diving Into Indonesia!

Diving Into Indonesia!

Off to the Land of Dumplings - Beijing, China

Off to the Land of Dumplings - Beijing, China