Bike Ride into the Past
Day trip to the Xi'an City Gate
Our Airbnb host, BinBin, took us to see the Xi'an inner city wall on Monday. Grace had been wanting to ride bikes on the wall since we arrived about two weeks ago. I didn't get why it was such a popular thing to do, but now I know why:
1. The View
The wall surrounds a large portion of land and stretches approximately 8.5 miles. When you look down on the bustling streets below, you will see cyclists and people going on their way, but it's also close enough to the ground so you can yell down and wave at bystanders- they'll probably get excited and take photos of you!
2. The History
It suddenly hit me as we were riding along the bumpy stone paths that thousands of years ago, there were horses and carts being pulled along this same stretch of wall amongst the traders and locals going every which way. The history behind Xi'an's many attractions is what brings people to visit the city, but you don't experience it until you touch the rocks that have seen more seasons than all of us put together. About a quarter of the way, there's an inconspicuous entrance to an underground museum where you can see a crumbling, ancient part of the wall...
3. The Workout
We arrived at the wall around 4pm and the sun was blazing down on us. We rented some bikes (45RMB/person + 200RMB deposit that gets returned to you when you finish riding) and started our two-hour journey around the inner city. The first stretch is great for taking photos!
We stopped for ice cream towards the end (there's a few bathroom stops with vendors). If you're feeling a little rebellious, ignore the "no ramp riding" signs and ride up the corner ramps and speed down the other side to get a little speed boost! Along the road, you can see an old temple with a golden roof- we arrived there at sunset so it was glowing:
If you make your way to Xi'an, China, riding bikes on the inner city wall is definitely one of my top things to do!
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