Yes, but which one will make me look like a twat?
Spent the evening in the basement of a Thai Restaurant just off Trafalgar Square in the company of ‘Travel Indochina’, a tour operator who, for exorbitant fees, take lazy (mostly aging) bastards who can’t be arsed to organize their own trips round Asia – booking them into the best accommodation and generally making sure they don’t ‘rough it’ in any way whatsoever.
We initially had a slide show presentation on Laos, Vietnam and Cambodia, which simply whetted the appetite even more for the impeding trip. After which we stuffed ourselves on the platter of absolutely yummy assorted Thai starters. The second half of the evening was dedicated to China.
We’ve not really planned to visit China, but seeing the presentation there are definitely a few parts of the country we’d like to go to, in particular the Silk Road, (east to west China) and Shanghai – which looks absolutely amazing.
The only reason we sat through the slide show was to get some additional ideas on places to check out and to see what accommodation they recommended – obviously it’ll be significantly cheaper to dead the tour operator and book everything directly.
We also got that ace free Thai nosh, which to be honest I’d have sat through a presentation on Eastbourne for.
The Travel Indochina bods proudly stated that the area of the Great Wall they would take you to would be far away from the tourists.
Far away from the tourists… wha wha hat? Aren’t we all bloody tourists?
I don’t know if it’s just Asia that elicits such travel snobbery but it seems to be rife. All the books I’ve read and all the websites I’ve visited constantly say ‘don’t go here, full of tourists – you really need to go to this unspoilt area’ – not unspoilt for long I think if you’re recommending to all and sundry. I guess this is why if you take a rucksack anywhere round the world you instantly have to refer to yourself as a backpacker and not ‘god forbid’ a tourist – imagine how dreadful that would be! You would be just the same as ‘those’ that haven’t tried to enjoy their ‘holiday’ as much as you have.
I understand that certain sections of the Great Wall now have McDonalds and Starbucks along with the usual array of postcard and tat peddlers which is ironic, as I was under the impression that the Wall was built to keep the barbarians out.
Hmm… perhaps I’m already a travel snob.