Vandyke Trip to China!

Published on 03 May 2017

Vandyke Trip to China!

During the Easter break 50 staff and students from Vandyke Upper School undertook a once in a lifetime trip to China. The 10 day trip consisted  of a visit to 3 major cities, Beijing, Suzhou and  Shanghai. We had the opportunity to visit all the famous sites including The Summer Palace, Tiananmen Square, The Forbidden City, The Temple of Heaven to name just a few.

The highlight of our time in Beijing was a visit to the Great Wall of China, to be able to stand on such an iconic landmark was truly amazing.  On the second day we all took a rickshaw ride in the old town and had the privilege to attend a Calligraphy workshop in the home of a Chinese family.  Our time in Beijing ended with a Tai Chi lesson in the park and tea at Lama Temple.

On day 4 we took the superfast train to Shanghai. Arriving in Shanghai was a real contrast to the historic Beijing that we had left behind some 5 hours earlier. It is a city of two halves, and the social divide is huge, from the very wealthy 100 storey tower blocks to the slum housing with no bathrooms, toilets and kitchens, that still house over 2 million people.  A city of 27 million people in a space half the size of Beijing means constant  traffic jams on the roads and people jams on the streets!

Whilst in the city we visited the Pearl TV Tower with its very scary glass floor, the inspiring Shanghai City Museum, the Yuyuan Garden and the beautiful Jade Buddha Temple, a truly special place. We even saw a traditional Chinese Acrobatic show.  We also spent a day visiting the historic city of Suzhou where we spent time at the Humble Administrator’s Garden and took a river cruise  along the Huangpujiang River. Here students got time to visit one of the many Chinese markets.

Our amazing trip ended with an action packed day at Shanghai Disney, the Disney Corporation’s latest park. This was a very different place to all the other Disney parks as it has a real Chinese feel, with few Roller coasters, but many state of the art 4D experiences and Disney’s largest castle.  10 amazing and life changing days were had by all and we  returned with memories that will, I am sure, stay with us all for many years to come.

Mrs Hargreaves