Sunday Snapshot | Giant Buddha Watching Over the River | China

Sunday Snapshot | Giant Buddha Watching Over the River | China

Along the Jialing River in Sichuan, China sits the world’s largest stone-carved Buddha. Constructed in 713 AD by monks, it was hoped that his peaceful presence would calm the river’s tide and spare villagers their lives. Centuries later the Buddha still keeps a watchful gaze and the river’s rapids have calmed. Of course whether this is due to the Buddha’s influence or the extra construction materials that were dumped into the river is up to you to decide. Traveling to Leshan to see the Buddha was definitely not a peaceful experience. It was my first real solo travel and not the easiest place to get to. I got lost, had to ask for help several times, and was daunted by the trip and the prospect of the year in China ahead of me. But when I had first started dreaming of going to Sichuan the image of the Buddha had come up any time I researched the area. Making the trip to see him became something I felt I had to do and once I got there I felt like I would indeed be ready for the experience of living in China.   Rebekah is teaching English in China while on a mission to eat a lot of dumplings and run a lot of mountains all while exploring as much of Sichuan province as possible. www.mountainsandpassports.com...
Sunday Snapshot | Bathing Buddha | Hong Kong

Sunday Snapshot | Bathing Buddha | Hong Kong

A while back we celebrated Buddha’s birthday by going to see one of the largest Buddhas in the world.  While we did a lot of talking about that big Buddha, we never had the chance to picture the smaller one.   The washing of Buddha is a ceremony that signifies the cleansing of both outer and inner dirt. After kneeling upon the cushion, one should fill the ladle with water and pour it over the Buddha’s head three times, repeating sequentially: “May I eliminate all evil thought, May I cultivate good deeds, May I help save all living things” (as sourced from here).   Want to see your picture featured on our Sunday Snapshot segment? We’re now accepting guest submissions! Just send us an email at acruisingcouple@gmail.com with your photo and a brief description. We’d love to have...
Lantau Island’s Big Buddha: Is It Worth It?

Lantau Island’s Big Buddha: Is It Worth It?

Lantau Island’s Big Buddha—Is it worth it?   Tian Tan Buddha, or simply the Big Buddha, is one of the world’s largest Buddhas as well as a popular tourist attraction in Hong Kong. Serenely nestled on the hills of Lantau Island, it also takes a bit of a time commitment and varying amounts of dough (not to mention hundreds of stairs) to access the Buddha’s smiling face. We did make the trek out to visit the Buddha, and even got to wish him the happiest of birthdays while we were there. But many fellow travelers we met in Hong Kong expressed their disinterest in the statue, primarily because of the time involved to see the tourist attraction.   So was it worth it? You’ll have to wait (we know you would never just skim down) to the end of the post to find out. But first, let’s talk practicalities.   Getting to the Big Buddha To access the Big Buddha, you’ll first need to arrive at the Tung Chung MTR station. (We’ll mention this in another post, but do so via your Octopus Card. It’s a huge time and money saver, and it works on the bus too.) Once there, you can do one of two things:  1. Take bus No. 23 to Ngong Ping (via MTR exit B) If you mime Big Buddha actions, all the locals                 will direct you to the bus you need. Creativity points awarded. Be prepared for small roads, deep bends, and fast drivers.           Estimated time: 30-40 minutes one-way          ...
Sunday Snapshot | Happy Birthday Buddha | Lantau Island, Hong Kong

Sunday Snapshot | Happy Birthday Buddha | Lantau Island, Hong Kong

Happy Birthday Buddha! After a harrowing bus ride, we finally arrived at Tian Tan Buddha–the world’s largest outdoor seated bronze Buddha (with quite possibly the longest name).  We alighted from the bus only to find ourselves immersed in a cloud. Despite being one of the largest Buddhas in the world, we could barely make out its silhouette from the base of the stairs. Finally the clouds drifted away and the buddha became visible, but only to coincide with a million people joining us around the statue. I love the ‘human element’ in photos, but it was getting a bit ridiculous. Until this happened. As I was about to finally capture a photograph without a single sweaty tourist, this monk centered himself in front of me. After chasing after the perfect shot all morning all I had to do was hit the shutter once. Today also happens to be Buddha’s birthday, making this the absolute perfect shot for Photo Friday.  Hope you...

365 Photo Project Completed!

There’s a website out there called the 365 Project. Essentially it challenges you to document a year of your life by taking a photo every day. You can upload your photos to their website, but since we already have our own blog we thought we would take the idea and upload our own photos here. We decided to start the 365 Photo Project now because we just go our new DSLR camera, and of course, we’re living in Taiwan! So for the next year we will be uploading a photo of the day, partially to capture those random and ridiculous adventures we will always remember, and partially to document the daily occurrences that would otherwise be forgotten. Disclaimer: we will go ahead and say now, you aren’t living life if you have internet access everyday. If we fail to get online, don’t fret; we’ll still take the picture of the day and just upload it later! Hope you’ll follow along *Update: We successfully finished the 365 Photo Project! It was ridiculously challenging, and half the time we ended up just taking a picture of random things around the apartment as an afterthought before bed. But we’re still very glad we stuck with the project. It has been very rewarding to look back through our first year of marriage and life in a foreign country.  We encourage you to give it a go! Check out the 366 (it was a leap year) pictures below...