Another Weekend Trip - Nandaihe
On Saturday, we went on a trip to Nandaihe (pictures), a beach on the Eastern coast of China located in Hebei province. Nandaihe, which means South River Area (something like that) is considered the “little sister” of Beidaihe (North …), which over the past few years has been overrun by inland dwellers seeking beaches. The two are only about 10-20 km apart. We left Saturday morning at around 8:30, only about an hour behind schedule (this is pretty normal, we call this “Beijing Time”, as everyone in this city is late for one thing or another.) Betty arranged transport - an 18 seater small bus - the optimal size for a group of 6! :-) All together, including road tolls, gas, and a small tip, we paid ~750 RMB (~$90). Not too bad considering we rented it for the whole day with driver. We arrived around 11:30 or so. I was surprised that the beach was as clean as it was (ok, not Hawaii, but, this is china, and it was clean for china standards). The water didn’t look super clean, but that is to be expected as this area of the coast has a lot of shipping-related business. We spent about an hour or so just relaxing on the beach. I dug a pretty deep hole which we decided looked like a squatter toilet. Pictures have been taken. We went to a restaurant and had pretty decent seafood. Mussels, oysters, clams, fish, and snails. Following lunch, we drove north past Beidaihe to another beach-city called something like Qingyuangli (ok, that is probably completely wrong). The beach wasn’t as clean and had many many more people. Around 5pm we decided to head back to Beijing. We finished up the day with a meal, Outdoor-Beijing style - Chuan (meat scewers). All in all, it was a nice trip - good to get out of Beijing before it gets too cold. For those of us who haven’t seen the coast for a while (me), it was a welcomed trip. We are discussing the destination of our next group trip, to be held sometime late October - thinking about Chengde, an Imperial Summer Getaway. More details later if the trip turns out to be a reality.