April 24, 2013, by Mark

Mountains, Mao’s House & the Tomb Sweeping Festival

The end of my second week in China was a little less hectic than previous days but I still managed two mountains and a festival. The first mountain, Mt. Mogan, required clambering out of bed very early and onto a bus as it was a good three hour journey away from Hangzhou city. Once arrived we visited Chairman Mao’s ‘house’, although we later found out he only took a nap there, yet the house boasted a bedroom, kitchen, resting areas and dining room all of which Mao supposedly used…whilst napping.

Mao's bedroom

After visiting Mao’s house we stopped for a lunch that included numerous dishes consisting of various animals’ heads. I’d learnt by this point the best course of action was not to ask questions but to just dive in with the chopsticks. The rest of the afternoon was spent wondering around the mountain in glorious sunshine, after which we jumped back on the bus destined for Hangzhou where the majority soon nodded off for an afternoon nap.


The next two days it was Qingming festival, otherwise known as the tomb sweeping festival where Chinese families tend to the graves of the departed, quite a unique festival I think you’ll agree! But with no graves to attend to myself, I chose instead to use some of the time to return to the main university campus I visited on my birthday. The main reason for the return was to purchase some ‘stash’ such as hoodies, trackies and t-shirts, I am now the proud owner of far too many items of Zhejiang University clothing! The next day, I headed up another mountain for a good portion of the day, nearer to the university this time the mountain offered spectacular views of the university and surrounding Zhejiang province.

– Mark J Richardson

Posted in 2011-Mark