- February 2011
Happy Chinese New Year everyone! Red lanterns are hanging throughout the streets and homes across China as the country celebrates the coming of a new year on the 3rd February. We'd like to take this opportunity to look at some new China tours for 2011, our revamped classic Japan tour and the Motor Neuron Disease Australia China Cycle Challenge. We hope there's plenty there to whet the appetite and get you on your bikes in the upcoming year!
Ride through the sublime karst mountains of Yangshuo, Guangxi Province, China
Starting in March 2011 we'll be offering a range of fantastic day tours taking in different areas of interest around our base in Yangshuo. Tours will be available everyday from March through to December (winter tours available on request) with various routes to suit all levels of riders and all lead by passionate and knowledgeable bike guides who love riding and want to show off the best that Yangshuo has to offer. These tours are designed to get you on the back roads, away from the crowds to see rural life and Yangshuo's stunning sights with our inside knowledge to guide you. There's a reason why we are based here and we invite you to come along and find out why! To find out more contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org or simply drop by our office in Yangshuo.
The road to Shangri La has opened once more....
One of our newest and most exciting trips, The Magic and Majesty of Shangri La, in Yunnan Province, China, had a recent layoff due to large scale road works. We thought the road was fine as it was, but economic stimulus in China means that everything gets a makeover! The good news is that the road is open and we are running our first departure for 2011 starting on the 21st of May. To celebrate we are offering a 10% discount on this departure if you mention that you heard about this offer here in Revolution. To find out more about this journey into remote Yunnan go to:
The Magic and Majesty of Shangri La Cycle Tour
So what exactly is Chinese New Year?
Chinese New Year is the most important festival in Chinese culture, a little like Christmas for us westerners. It is celebrated on the new moon of the first month of the lunar calendar, and is a time for family reunions, scrumptious feasts and gift giving (often small cash-filled red envelopes called ‘hong bao’).
Chinese New Year traditionally lasts from the first day to the 15th day of the New Year (which is the Lantern Festival), but the demands of modern life mean that most people don’t get such an extended holiday. Houses are decorated with red paper banners which have auspicious couplets written on them. These are hung around doorways and are intended to bring luck to the household for the coming year. Evil spirits are driven away by loud noise, so Chinese New Year is a very loud celebration with long strings of firecrackers constantly set off throughout the holiday, lighting up the night skies.
A typical greeting in Chinese is "Xin nian kuai le" (Happy New Year!), "Gong xi fa cai" (Congratulations and wishes for prosperity) and the rather cheeky "Hong bao na lai" (Give me a Hong Bao)! This year is the year of the rabbit in Chinese astrology.
News has just come through that travel permits for this region will not be issued to foreigners in April and May. We have cancelled our April 16th trip departure of the “Cycle Across the Roof of the World” and will post up any further developments in the future newsletters or on the website.
Heading to Europe...
During March 2011 one of Bike Asia's founders, Scott Spencer, will be in Europe to attend the World Cycle Summit in Constance, Germany as well as the international travel show ITB Berlin. He will also spend some time in France and England. Travel dates are 2nd to 5th March in Paris, 6th to 8th March Constance, Germany, 9th to 12th March Berlin and 13th to 18th London. If anyone would like to meet up during this time please contact Scott at email@example.com
Land of the Rising Sun
Japan makes Lonely Planet's top ten destinations for 2011. See:
Whether best of list's are your thing or not Japan is back in the spotlight. Not that it ever went away! Our Japan tour has been given a good new year clean up and we've been able to make it even better and, good news, even more affordable. If your thing is meditating with monks on mountain tops, soaking up hot springs, eating food as art and cycling over bridges, gorges, mountains and islands check out our Japan Cycling tour that gets you where the tourists aren't! For dates and info got to:
Islands, Mountains and Monasteries Cycle Tour, Japan
Ride China for a good cause
Bike Asia is in the process of working with Motor Neuron Disease Australia to put together a charity ride in China to raise money for this excellent cause. Preparations are almost complete and the ride will take in Yunnan Province, China during the Australian school holidays in September/ October 2011. Watch this space as we will release more information and dates for the ride as it comes to hand. Any initial enquiries or expressions of interest can be directed to firstname.lastname@example.org. To find out more about the great work that MND Australia does go to:
That's it for now but keep an eye out for our next issue of Revolution as there promises to be some eye-opening new trips to be released, some great giveaways and much more.
Happy New Year!
The Bike Asia team
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