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Chongqing to Changsha, China

Day 142: Country #15.2

Before leaving for Guangzhou, my friend told me about the cable car ride across the Yangtze River. It was a little foggy, but at the least, I wanted to check out the view from top of the hill.

I ended up taking an unusual path, weaving through stairs and back alleys, and eventually made it to the Ropeway, but they were closed for maintenance. It was a worthwhile trip that got me closer to a very dense part of the city.

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Chongqing rope-way cable car.

I walked down and stumbled upon Gangyu Plaza Square, a mall built right on the side of a large hill. The elevators listed the floors, but many of them opened up to ground levels.

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One entrance to Gangyu Plaza Square mall, Chongqing, China

I was curious about the top level and was surprised to find no limitation on where I could go. Interesting, the top floor lead to the roof, which itself was a fully built garden – again a ground level.

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Top level of this 15 floor high rise is a house with garden!

Catching a glimpse of the numerous cranes nearby, I headed back down to explore that part of the city. It was incredibly dense, overflowing with people and shops, distracting me from my course, but I eventually approached the construction site, taking note of some unusual shapes and designs.

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The Chongqing Arts Center

They weren’t quite as unique as the Chongqing Guotai Arts Center, which I passed by on my way to the metro, nor the ridiculously designed stairs and escalators needed to reach the metro station by the Qiansimen Bridge. I was curious about the extra architectural considerations for building so many elevated crisscrossing roads and bridges.

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Death defying high stairs to catch the Chongqing metro train.

After riding the metro a few different paths, I made my way to the railway station and caught a train to Changsha, known as the birthplace of Mao Zedong.

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I got a glass jar while walking around so I could get hot water on the train.

As the train coasted through the mountains, I couldn’t help notice, again, our extreme heights above the ground and the engineering needed to allow me to take pictures of the countryside.

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Leaving Chongqing, China

A glass water bottle is essential because it can hold both hot and cold water. I recommend glass over metal because you can see what’s inside. China is the only country I’ve seen that prefers hot water, but many other countries offer stoves or electric kettles for boiling water. Instead of boiling and waiting for it to cool overnight, with a glass bottle, you can fill up right away and leave for the day. Using local water saves a lot of money (and the environment) vs buying plastic bottled water.


    • It looks like the other building in the background also has a rooftop garden. I even read about an illegal “mountain” that was built on top of another building somewhere else in china. Having a real suburban style house in the middle of a big Chinese city is pretty interesting.


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