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Posted on: 7 May, 2019

Group of friends experience history, culture and beauty of China from the saddles of their bicycles

Amrchair3 Mark.jpg

There’s a variety of ways you can travel when it comes to transport, and while bike-riding isn’t the most common, as Mark Ellaway and his friends will tell you, it’s a great way to take in changing landscapes and breathtaking scenery.

Exploring hundreds of kilometres of China during four separate visits, Mark will share his fascinating tales of the rich history, culture and beauty they experienced from the saddles of their bicycles at the next Armchair Travel session at Yeppoon Town Hall on Wednesday, 22 May from 6pm.

Mark said he first went to China in 2013 and cycled from Harbin to Heihe (Russian Border) a distance of around 650km over a three week period.

“I was totally fascinated by everything China had to offer – the history, culture, landscapes and most importantly, the people, and couldn't wait to return,” Mr Ellaway explained.

“I have been extremely lucky to have a great group of friends who invited me in the first place, and have been back to China cycling with them on three other occasions.”

Mr Ellaway said throughout the four bicycle trips to China with the latest being July 2018 and the first in 2013, each ride was roughly three weeks in length, cycling approximately 650kms per trip.

“We rode in different locations each time, from the northeast part of China (Harbin to the Russian border), to the eastern edge of the Tibet Plateau and southwest in Yunnan province,” Mr Ellaway said.

“The small group of us usually included four to seven people, four from Australia and three from China. We are all ex-geographers and are extremely interested in ‘landscapes’ and how they form over time. Of course the food was great and the local people we got to meet all enhanced each experience.

“In a couple of places we stayed we were the first foreigners that had either stayed in a particular place or eaten at their little restaurant, so that also gives you an idea of how far off the beaten track we ventured.”

If you have a fascinating, lively and passionate travel story that will delight the community, speak with some of our wonderful library staff and put your name down to participate in this popular series.

Armchair Travel: China will be held Wednesday, 22 May from 6pm – 7pm at Yeppoon Town Hall, Normanby St. To reserve your spot, register http://www.livingstone.qld.gov.au/whatson

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