Wild Goose chase and peaceful mosque

Wild Goose chase and peaceful mosque
Xi'an, China

Xi’an, China

We had a day in Xi’an before heading to Nanjing. Xi’an is a large modern city of 6.75m people but it feel like the provinial capital it is. The old city walls are vast and help define both the boundaries but also the character. Xi’an isn’t beautiful but is large by almost any European standards. Traffic flows pretty smoothly and it is booming like the rest of China with road construction everywhere. The city walls would be best seen at night when the red lanterns are lit along its 13km length. But on a hot, sweaty day in May they weren’t bad either. Then onto the Wild Goose Pagoda, the bigger one I believe. Lacking in architercural or more importantly spititual feeling. I’d skip this if you are presed for time or have been to any other Buddhist temple in Asia. Instead head for the Mosque in the Muslim quarter by the bell tower, it ouses peace, calm and tranqulity. The little lanes off the Mosque are full of people selling a wide range of tourist tat and some rip-off antiques. But the prices are so breath-takingly low and the vendors so friendly you don’t mind haggling for a few minutes over a 2 Yuan (20cent)fake sandlewood bookmark. Good news for pee-pee boy fans, they can be found here together with Mao caps, 6 week old medieval coins and the Little Red Book in a range of Europeam languahes.


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