Smog-Covered Hong Kong Installs Clear Skyline Banners for Vacation Photos

4 CommentsStumble it Icon digg it Icon

Hong Kong has one of the world’s most stunning skylines. The problem is it’s becoming barely visible behind the dense curtain of smog that has engulfed several of the city’s districts, and even harder to capture in vacation photos. Unable to fix the air pollution problem, tourism authorities have instead decided to install clear skyline banners where tourists can have their pictures taken.

This week, Hing Kong’s Air Pollution Index reached “very high” levels in Central and Western District, Causeway Bay and Mongkok, with very high concentrations of toxic ozone and nitrogen dioxide recorded by local monitoring stations. Apart from the obvious health-related issues, the heavy smoke covering the island city is also hurting the local tourism business. According to Chinese newspaper China Daily, the frequent air pollution has contributed greatly to the decline in tourist numbers, with a recent survey revealing a rise in “complaints focused on the environment at scenic spots” around China. After all, what good is a city’s magnificent skyline if you can barely see it? Luckily, Hong Kong authorities have come up with a novel solution to this problem – they installed a number of panoramic banners displaying a clear view of the city at various scenic spots. Here, people can take smog-free photos of the skyscraper-studded waterfront, to have as souvenirs.

fake-hong-kong

..

Closer to Heaven – A Temple Built on the Rooftop of a Chinese Skyscraper

Comments OffStumble it Icon digg it Icon

Architectural wonders erected on the rooftops of skyscrapers seems to be the latest constructions trend in China. Just days after the scandal involving a mountain villa built on the roof of a Beijing apartment building, a microblogger from Shenzen discovered a traditional private temple located atop a similar residential building.

According to several Chinese media reports, the mysterious temple constructed on the roof of a 21-storey luxury apartment building in the Nanfang district of Shenzen has been around for at least three years, yet nobody, not even the tenants know who it belongs to. The rooftop structure is surrounded by foliage, has glazed golden tiles and features traditional upturned eaves decorated with carvings of dragons and phoenixes. A fingerprint scanner, security cameras and dogs barking on the other side of a locked door prevent access to the temple, but neighbors say it’s often used for traditional Chinese religious practices, as indicated by the ashes of burned offerings that float down from the roof. The private temple, suspected to be yet another illegal rooftop structure, jeopardizes the structural integrity of the entire building, but tenants say their complaints have so far landed on dead ears.

rooftop-temple

..

Martial Arts Enthusiasts Practice Impossible “Crouching Tiger Hidden Dragon” Kung Fu Moves at Chinese Resort

1 CommentStumble it Icon digg it Icon

Remember those awesome action sequences from the movies like Crouching Tiger Hidden Dragon, where kung fu masters would float through the air, skim on water and do battle through tall bamboo trees? A Chinese resort is now giving martial arts enthusiast the chance to perform these impossible feats themselves with the help of special effects equipment used on the big screen.

A martial arts theme-park in Kunming, China, has invested around $800,000 in high-tech special effects equipment that gives kung fu fans the chance to perform the impossible stunts of their favorite movie icons. From skywalking to skimming on water, anything is possible at the Wild Duck Lake Resort, thanks to a computer-controlled wire system almost identical to the ones used in blockbuster films. This is apparently the first time people outside the movie business get the chance to live their dreams of becoming legendary kung fu masters, even if it’s just for a few minutes. According to a theme-park spokesman, the computer controls how fast and how far visitors travel on the water and through the air, once they are connected to the wires. So all they have to do is strike a nice pose as their friends and family take photos. Fees for the realistic martial arts experience start as low as $15, so if you’ve always fantasized about starring in your own kung fu flick, this is one chance you don’t want to miss.

kung-fu-theme-park

..

Eccentric Businessman Builds Mountain Villa atop Beijing Apartment Building

2 CommentsStumble it Icon digg it Icon

Zhang Biqing, a successful Chinese businessman from Beijing, has spent the last six years building a realistic-looking two-story mountain villa atop a high apartment building right in China’s capital city.

Wouldn’t it be great if you could retreat somewhere quiet and get away from it all, without actually leaving your home? That’s probably what Zhang Biqing, a former government adviser turned successful entrepreneur, thought when he decided to build his dream mountain villa at the top of a 26-floor apartment building in Beijing’s upscale Park View estate. During the six years it took to complete, residents complained about the infernal construction noise, but after seeing the enormity of the complex covering the entire top of their building, they began to worry about structural damage. The mountain in which Biqing’s villa appears to be carved may be fake, but the materials used to make it are reportedly pretty heavy as well, and threaten to weaken the residential building’s resistance. It turns out the whole rooftop project is illegal, as Zhang never received the necessary planning permission for his extreme dwelling, yet no one ever bothered him about it until Chinese newspapers recently covered the topic sparking public outrage.

rooftop-villa

..

Chinese “Watermelon Man” Carves Images into Watermelon Flesh with a Spoon

Comments OffStumble it Icon digg it Icon

21-year-old Qian Wei Cheng, an Automotive Engineering student at Tsinghua University, recently became an internet celebrity after photos of his watermelon flesh carvings went viral.

There are a lot of talented food artists out there who can turn watermelons into intricate works of art, but most of them use special tools to carve the tough shell of the fruit, whereas Qian Wei Cheng uses only a spoon and knife to work on the soft red flesh. Photos of his edible masterpieces surfaced on major Chinese social sharing sites just a few days ago, catching the attention of both casual users and news reporters. Contacted by several media outlets, the 21-year-old amateur artist appeared shocked by all the attention his carvings were getting, especially since to him they were just a fun way to pass the time when he got bored doing his homework or studying for his exams. For most of the designs, Qian just used a spoon, while for the most detailed ones, like the rose below, he also used a small knife.

watermelon-carving

..

Chinese Undergo Plastic Surgery to Change Their Destiny

1 CommentStumble it Icon digg it Icon

In the Western world, most people undergo cosmetic procedures like rhinoplasty, eye lifts and chin implants in their quest for a youthful and attractive appearance, but in China they are considered sure ways of improving one’s fortune and changing fate.

According to Mian Xiang, the ancient Chinese Art of Face Reading, a person’s facial features compared to their date of birth say a lot about their future. For example, small and sparse eyebrows show a lack of vitality and strength, whereas a hidden mole within the eyebrows indicates a successful break and monetary gain. A “double forehead” or a full prominent forehead means that person is very intelligent and has the capacity to retain a lot of information, while the bulbous end of the nose is called a “wealth palace” and its size and shape reveal a man’s ability to store wealth, and a woman’s chances of finding a rich and supportive husband. Basically the shape, size, placement and color of each facial feature is believed to reflect an individual’s health, personality traits, luck and future career prospects. In order to improve their chances of hitting it big in business, finding true love or improving their luck, many Chinese have their features altered according to the instructions of face reading masters.

plastic-surgery

..

Chinese Get Their Feet Wet at Chongqing’s Unique River Restaurant

Comments OffStumble it Icon digg it Icon

Aptly named the River Cafe, one restaurant in Chongqing, southern China, has come up with an ingenious way of attracting clients. Taking advantage of a nearby stream, the owners have set up dozens of tables straight on the water, offering patrons a cool escape from the unbearable heat.

With summer temperatures reaching over 40 degrees Celsius, the Chinese are always looking for new and enjoyable ways to cool off. The River Cafe, in Chongqing, is inviting locals and tourists to take off their shoes and grab a seat in the waters of a cooling stream. Since it’s too hot to serve their delicious food inside or in the sun, the managers of this popular venue have decided to set up most of the tables straight on the water, under the shade of trees. The pop-up restaurant now has more tables in the stream than it has on land, which can seat up to 300 people at a time. The water doesn’t look very clean, and you can see plastic bottles floating through the plastic tables, but it beats facing the scorching sun or going to overcrowded swimming pools like the famous Dead Sea of China.

River-Restaurant-Chongqing

..

China’s Dead Sea – Probably the World’s Most Crowded Swimming Pool

1 CommentStumble it Icon digg it Icon

If you think your local swimming pool becomes unbearably crowded on hot summer days, just check out these photos of the so-called Dead Sea, a salt-water swimming pool in China’s Daying County where thousands of people gather every weekend to escape the heat.

Inspired by the real Dead Sea in the Middle East, the Chinese resort build around an underground salt-water lake in Daying County covers an area of 30,000 square meters and is able to accommodate up to 10,000 swimmers at one time. It’s pretty big even for Chinese standards, but apparently not big enough. According to the Chinese press, over 15,000 people, most of them equipped with large swim rings, descended upon this popular summer retreat last Sunday making it look like a giant bowl of human cereal. I’m not even sure the term “swimming pool” even applies to this place on such occasions, considering it’s nearly impossible to move without hitting somebody, let alone flap your hands and feet to swim. The good thing about this place is the high salinity of the water which makes “swimmers” float freely, so there’s no real risk of going under. If that were to happen I can’t see how a person could rise up again…

Dead-Sea-pool

..

Alligator Snapper Turtle Goes through 10 Cigarettes a Day

Comments OffStumble it Icon digg it Icon

According to Chinese media reports, in a village on the outskirts of Changchun lives a nicotine-addicted alligator snapper turtle who smokes around 10 cigarettes a day. The turtle’s keeper says that whenever it feels the need for a smoke, the reptile becomes agitated and starts to hiss.

So how does a turtle become addicted to cigarettes? A local chef, surnamed Tang, who is helping his boss take care of it, says it all started about two months ago when he noticed the pet had lost interest in its daily fish diet. After inspecting the reptile, he noticed there was a sharp chicken bone lodged in its soft belly, but when he tried to pull it out, it snapped at his hand from the pain, nearly biting off his fingers. Tang realized the only way he could take out the bone was to distract the turtle, so he took the lit cigarette that was resting in his mouth and gave it to the pet to bite on. Its jaws snapped on the filter and didn’t let go for hours. His idea proved effective, as he managed to remove the sharp chicken bone, but little did the cook know it would lead to an even bigger problem.

smoking-turtle

..

Human Breast Milk Is Becoming Really Popular with Adults in China

2 CommentsStumble it Icon digg it Icon

According to multiple Chinese media reports, wealthy and busy adults have found a new way to combat health issues caused by stress and strain – drinking human breast milk. They hire wet nurses who regularly provide the nutritious drink.

While many parents in China are struggling to find safe powdered milk for their babies, following a scandal over poisoned formula, rich and powerful adults from cities like Shenzen and Guangdong  are paying big bucks for fresh breast milk to keep in shape. The demand is apparently so great that companies are promoting and expanding their breast milk supply business from babies to adults. “Clients can choose to consume breast milk directly through breastfeeding … but they can always drink it from a breast pump if they feel uncomfortable,” Lin Jun, a manager of Xinxinyu Household Service Company told Chinese newspaper Southern Metropolis Daily. “Quite a few of our clients hire in-house wet nurses to ensure a supply of fresh breast milk on a daily base,” Lin said, adding that “wet nurses rarely raise objections as long as the price is right.” Apparently, most of those who indulge in drinking fresh breast milk are successful adults with high incomes and high-pressure jobs looking for a highly nutritious miracle cure to their health problems.

human-breast-milk

..

Playing with Lightning – Chinese Band Uses 1-Million-Volts Tesla Coil in Its Electrifying Concerts

Comments OffStumble it Icon digg it Icon

If you’re ever passing through China’s Fujian province, make sure to stop by Dacuo Village and catch a performance by local band Lightningfan. The group specializes in producing electric arcs from Tesla coils that are charged with 1 million volts of electricity, and are in sync with the music they play.

31-year-old Wang Zengxiang, founder and leader of the 10-strong band Lightningfan, is a huge fan of the Tesla coil invented by geek hero extraordinaire Nikola Tesla. “When I was young, my family opened an electrical appliance repair shop. I have loved to study semiconductors and electrical equipment since I was a child,” Wang told the local press. But it was in 2001, when he enrolled in the school of Mechanical and Electrical Engineering at Fujian Agriculture and Forestry University that he discovered his first Tesla coil. He was so fascinated by the electrical device that he spent nearly all of his free time studying it. In 2007, he managed to build his very own 1.2-meter coil above his house, quit his comfortable job with an electrical company and dedicated himself to combining his passion for music with electricity. Together with a few like-minded friends, Wang founded Lightningfan, which started entertaining fellow villagers with its electrifying performances.

Tesla-coil-band

..

Pu Derong’s Exquisite Eggshell Carvings

Comments OffStumble it Icon digg it Icon

What do you get if you combine an egg, a carving knife and a pair of able hands? In Pu Derong’s case the answer is a breathtaking work of art. The 40-year-old self-taught artist from China’s Hebei Province can guide a knife across an egg’s thin shell to create amazing three-dimensional designs.

“I had always been fascinated by eggs as a child,” Pu says. “They are so fragile. Artists use canvases; eggs are mine.” The talented artist from Dongzhuangtou village showed a great interest in painting and calligraphy from a very young age, but he didn’t have the financial resources to attend a specialized art school, so he taught himself. In his adult years he did all kinds of manual labor, worked as a repairman and as a chef, but never gave up on his passion for art. One day, he discovered eggshell carving completely by accident, and he’s been hooked ever since. He made his own carving knife, and after hundreds of failed attempts, he started to master the art of carving on a fragile 0.3 mm eggshell canvas, creating all kinds of beautiful designs, from nature-inspired patterns, to Chinese traditional motifs and architectural pieces. Today, he is recognized as one of China’s most skilled artists, and his masterpieces have won several awards in various contests and exhibitions.

eggshell-carving

..

China’s Walking School Has Children as Young as Eight Marching 1,000 Km across the Country

Comments OffStumble it Icon digg it Icon

The Xu Xiangyang Education and Training Workroom, or the Walking School is an atypical educational facility which enrolls Chinese problem children and forces them to walk up to 1,000 kilometers through across the country in order to teach them discipline and make them take responsibility for their actions.

In a Chinese society which leaves no room for failure, spoiled kids, school dropouts and troublemakers risk getting left behind in a competitive race for success. To make sure that doesn’t happen, parents who have exhausted all other options enroll their children in the Walking School, a special boarding school based in Chengdu which forces them to march cross-country all day long and teaches them military discipline. Founded by ex-army veteran Xu Xiangyang, this correctional facility is inspired by the Red Army’s long march in the 1930s, and has a reputation of turning ineducable delinquents into outstanding members of society. Children between between 8 and 18 are brought here, often by force, and left to deal with the hardships of military life to hopefully change their ways.

China-walking-school

..

Look But Don’t Bite – China’s Mouthwatering Stone Food Banquets

Comments OffStumble it Icon digg it Icon

Petrified pasta, juicy braised pork, rocky dried fruits and many other delicious-looking dishes are all part of China’s rare stone food banquets. The spread is nice to look at, but trying to sneak a bite will cost you a few teeth.

People in the mountainous regions of China know how to appreciate beautiful rocks, and some spend their whole lives gathering different kinds of rocks, scouring specialized stone shops and trekking through rugged mountain passes and desserts in search of unique additions to their collections. Strangely shaped or colored rocks are considered a feast for the eyes, and stones that resemble food are considered even more wonderful. It takes a lot of time and luck to find naturally shaped pieces of carnelian or jade that look good enough to eat, but dedicated stone collectors have proven it’s possible, on a number of occasions. Organizing stone food banquets is a long-standing Chinese tradition, and even in modern times it manages to draw media attention and keep stone collecting popular.

stone-banquet

..

Chinese Human Snail Carries His Home on His Back Wherever He Goes

Comments OffStumble it Icon digg it Icon

38-year-old Liu Lingchao is a real-life human snail who carries his 60-kg-heavy house on his back wherever he goes. Made of bamboo poles and plastic sheets, the portable home provides shelter on Liu’s long travels through China.

Liu Lingchao makes a living selling plastic bottle and metal cans he picks up from the streets of various Chinese cities. The man from Rong’an, Guangdong Province, built his first mobile home five years ago, as a way to save money on his long journeys, and for protection against rain and cold weather. Liu found life as a snail to his liking, and has since then worn out three bamboo huts. His newest one is 1.5 meters wide and and 2.2 meters tall, offering him just enough room for a modest bedding and his travel necessities. Its 60 kg weight is not exactly easy for one man to carry, so Liu really is moving at the pace of a snail along China’s roads, but it beats having to look for shelter wherever he goes, and says the fact that he can settle down virtually anywhere he wants is worth the effort. The human snail left Wuzhou City several months ago, and is now just 20 miles away from completing an epic 270-mile walk and returning to his home town.

snail-man

..

Page 10 of 29« First...89101112...20...Last »