100s of Photos Documenting a 6-week tour of
Malaysia ~ Singapore ~ Thailand ~ China
Section II: China
Photos by Bill and Sue-On
Captions by Sue-On (expanded from our FaceBook pages)
Gallery 24:
Olympic Green, Bird's Nest Stadium and Water Cube
Click for full-screen images
 On the road to the Olympic Green, Bird's Nest Stadium and Water Cube.
The skyline of Beijing in the distance.
 Disney Mall... wonder what they sell in there...
 Approaching The Bird's Nest and The Water Cube
. . . or is that "McBubble"
 Pangu Plaza with the Dragon Building
(Pangu is a figure in a Chinese myth who separated heaven and earth).
This building is in the form of a dragon (head, trunk and tail) 
There are seven huge LED screens on wall
 The Bird's Nest in the distance. 
This structure was the main stadium for the 2008 Olympics, 
for track and field, football, gavelock, weight throwing and discus. 
The building was designed and accomplished together by Swiss and Chinese architects. 
The stadium cost $480 million to build and about $11 million each year to maintain.
 There are many vendors on the way to and in Olympic Park. 
One bit of info' I got off Google said that there are 
more vendors than tourists now that the Olympics are over. 
This man was selling the ever-present long strings of mini kites.
 The mall to the famous Olympic venues.
 The main entrance to Olympic Park.
 As I said, there are soldiers EVERYWHERE! 
They just march, march, and march...
 This vendor was selling souvenirs made from the seeds of a plant. 
Chinese astrological signs are carved on egg-size dried seeds.
 Two members of our group, Matt and Sarah, from Australia.
 Apparently souvenir hunters have removed a few letters.
 Bill had "friends" posing with him.
I'm not sure whether they were just too shy to ask to pose with "gwai lo" 
and just leaned into the picture, 
or they were posing for their own pictures ;-)
 On the day we toured the village, there was also a big fire department "fair".
This is the fire protection video booth.
 Further on, there were displays 
with very modern fire trucks, ladders, training towers...
all lined up under the spectacular Olympic lighting standards.
 You can just see that Bill's itching to ...
 ...try a John Carter-like gravity-defying jump to the top of the tower!
 There are trams and golf carts available to take tourists around the whole park, 
but we kept missing them or were tired of waiting for "a load." 
So, we sauntered ;-)
 The Water Cube, aka The National Aquatic Centre 
contains five pools that are six times the size of an Olympic pool. 
This was the venue for the 2008 Olympics swimming and diving events 
with seating and facilities for 17,000 spectators. 
There is also an "organically shaped restarant area carved out of the bubble structure".
 Outside is a huge space filled with "water fountains" choreographed to music.
 See! More soldiers. 
Bill's outfit didn't quite fit the requirements...
 This is quite a building, with +80,000 seats. 
There are plans for the stadium to anchor a shopping and entertainment complex
as well as continuing to function as a tourist attraction, 
and a sports and entertainment venue. 
To pay for the yearly upkeep,
investors have tried several failed money-making schemes already,
including man-made ski-hiills, and a Segway race track 
where tourists can pay $20.00 to zip around.
 Private enterprise at its best: 
living statues attracted our attention as we leave Olympic Village 
- with sore feet and anticipation of a Tibetan massage after supper!


Hundreds of Photos with Captions
Singapore ~ Malaysia



Web Design:  Bill Hillman
Bill and Sue-On Hillman Eclectic Studio
Brandon, Manitoba, Canada