Backpacking in China: Top 5 Everlasting Memories

Having been based in Asia for over 4 years of my life, I was able to see almost every country there, so far, (except for Maldives, Tibet, Pakistan, Bhutan and Nepal). The country I loved the most there was China, as a tourist it offers endless whackpacking sights. Here are my top 5 everlasting memories from my journeys through 13 of China’s 29 provinces.

Touring Ta Pa Tsune/Taxia Village in China’s Fujian Province

1.Sunset at Yuanyang Rice Terraces
Yuanyang is a breath removal location. This are houses the world’s largest conglomeration of rice terraces. After some really crazy bus rides and a night bus from Kunming to

yuanyang rice terraces sunset in china

Admriring the rice terraces at Yuanyang pre sunset in China’s Yunnan Province.

2.Touring the Casinos of Macau
I didn’t even know there was a part of China specialising in Casinos! That is until 2012 when I first visited Macau. I toured part of China specialising in Casinos at night, in awe of the sheer variety and incredible architecture of this once Portuguese colony. One night in the casino, I even managed to win money. The Venetian is without doubt the most elegant and elaborate casino I have ever been in.

Macau Skyline

3.World’s Biggest Toilet Complex in Chongqing
I lived out my childhood dream in 2013 which was to visit Chongqing. This was once dubbed “the world’s largest city you never heard of”! Inspired by a Michael Palin visit to Chongqing, I finally arrived in 2013. I stayed in a Chongqing hostel, drank with locals and toured the sights of this truly phenomenal gem.

jonny blair backpacking chongqing

Hold on tight my friends – Chongqing is a monster!!

And then there was the trip to Foreigner Street to visit the world’s largest toilet complex!! This was one of my crazier journeys and a place I will never forget.

chongqing china

One of many crazy quirky buildings in the Foreigner Street Theme Park in Chongqing, China.

4.Our night in a Fujian Tulou
Fujian Province was one of my favourites. We headed to the Fujian Tulou buildings in remote villages I had never heard of. It was all a big dream. I visited so many off the wall spots and was the only non-Chinese person for miles when I walked. The highlight from our time in the Fujian region was getting to spend a night in Ta Pa Tsune village, and sleep in an original Fujian Tulou building. We also toured Gu Lang Yu island, Xiamen, Yongding and a place called Tian Luo Keng (pictured below).

The amazing Fujian Tulou buildings - the cluster at Tian Luo Keng near Taxia Village

The amazing Fujian Tulou buildings – the cluster at Tian Luo Keng near Taxia Village

5.Mao’s Town – Changsha
I didn’t know it then but my visit to Changsha in 2014 was to be my last full and proper visit to China. Having once held a series of multiple entry visas for China, I kept going back – even just for weekends when I was living in the Kong. I headed to Chairman Mao’s town, Changsha.

mao statue hunan

At the Mao Zedong Statue in Changsha, Hunan Province. This is where it all began for Mao!

jonny blair hunan china changsha

Off the beaten track again: backpacking in Changsha, Hunan Province, China

I also cannot believe how many sights I had to leave off this list, including the quirky penis and vagina rock parks, the wacaday city of Guangzhou and even Shenzhen or the marvellous Shangri La and Tiger Leaping Gorge didn’t make it.

Backpacking at Penis Rock, Danxiashan Mountains, Guangdong Province, China

Backpacking at Penis Rock, Danxiashan Mountains, Guangdong Province, China

It was once my dream to visit all 29 of China’s provinces but in the wake of depression, that dream faded away. I still would love to visit again one day, but not for now. I need to focus on regaining strong mental health. But China was simply epic, as you can clearly tell from this article.

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