AT#499 – Travel to Guizhou China

What to do and see in Guizhou China. Travel to Guizhou China - Amateur Traveler Episode 499

Hear about travel to Guizhou China as the Amateur Traveler talks to travel writer Gina Czupka from about her trip to this off the beaten path destination.


Gina took a trip to this province in southwestern China which “is coming up on the radar in more places. It was just named to the New York Times list of 52 places to travel in 2016. I personally think it is a place you should go if you really want to see an unusual side of China that is disappearing.”

The region is richer in culture and in scenery than it is commercially. An old saying goes that “in Guizhou there are no 3 kilometers without a mountain, no 3 days without rain, and no 3 coins in one pocket”.

Gina is a textile collector. She says “I base a lot of my travel on places I can go and see heritage textiles being made and see them living in a culture. Guizhou is one of the most exceptional places in the world to do that.”

We start in the provincial capital of Guiyang which is the easiest access point, but then focus in on a series of villages around the city of Kaili. Kaili itself has weekend textile markets with a wide range of goods. “You will see mind boggling diversity. You’ll see felted silks in some of the textiles. You’ll see folded appliqué silks. You’ll see hemp, indigo dyeing, these incredible embroideries, just a rainbow of techniques that are so labor and time intensive.”

In Kaili, they saw a Lusheng festival (the Lusheng is a Hmong musical reed instrument with multiple bamboo pipes) where they got to see the musicians and dancers, taste the local food and even witnessed a Chinese bull fight.

While she usually travels independently, Gina did find that the use of a guide was helpful as the guide was the only person they met who spoke English. They made good use of the Google translate app.

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DK Eyewitness travel guides

DK Eyewitness travel guides

DK Eyewitness Travel Guides – One of my favorite guidebook series

Show Notes

Travel to Salzburg, Austria – Episode 432


52 Places to Go in 2016

Guiyang Travel Guide


Billy Zhang


Huangguoshu Waterfall

Zhenyuan County, Guizhou

Pork, Dreams, a Contest and Barbecue at Franklin Barbecue in Austin, Texas

A Little Song and Dance: The Zhouxi Lusheng Festival

Clash of the Titans: Bullfighting at the Zhouxi Lusheng Festival


Amateur Traveler Trip – Cambodia April 2016 – 9 days

About Travel to the Westfjords of Iceland – Episode 497 Steve wrote:

Hi Chris,

I just listened to the Travels to the Westfjords of Iceland Podcast. I really enjoyed it.

We’ve been to Iceland three times now. The last time we took a cruise that went along the west and north shores of Iceland. We stopped at many ports and used each port as a starting place to explore the surrounding area. It was a small Princess Cruises ship (700 passengers) that could get into almost any port. Princess put together excellent shore tours which we enjoyed. Iceland is as beautiful and challenging as Katie described. You really need a lot of time to explore this section Iceland.

Happy travels,


I also heard recently from Barry Kramer who has written often for the Amateur Traveler:

Hi Chris;

I was listening to this week’s episode of the Amateur Traveler on the Dominican Republic and I began think about how much I look forward to hearing your podcast each week. At this time of the year, I wanted to let you know how much I really appreciate all the work you put into the podcast and Amateur Traveler Website.

The first time I listened to the Amateur Traveler, I felt I really got what you were trying to accomplish. I am one of those persons who really likes to hear about other people’s vacations and trips. I love hearing details, personal impressions, stories, and experiences. They really help me to think about all the wonderful and interesting places there are around the world. The variety of locations you have addressed is amazing, and your consistency in posting the podcast on a regular basis is admirable. I can truly say, that is some way, I find all the stories interesting and informative.

I also appreciate the way you always treat each guest respectfully and try to get the most out of them. I can tell that it is not always easy. In addition to providing a lot of entertainment, the information from the podcast is also really useful. Last year when I went to Peru, I checked back episodes of the Amateur Traveler to help with my planning. I also did this recently to help plan a future trip to Ireland.

Each year I do podcasts with the students I teach, so I know you put in many hours bringing valued and useful information to your listeners. I also appreciate you providing an outlet for me to write about my experiences by publishing my travel reports and articles on your blog. I have learned a lot from the process.

I wish you and your family a really wonderful holiday!

Looking forward to hearing about many interesting places in the new year,

Barry Kramer

What to do and see in Guizhou China. Travel to Guizhou China - Amateur Traveler Episode 499

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AT#498 – Travel to Indianapolis, Indiana

What to do, see and eat in Indianapolis. Travel to Indianapolis, Indiana - Amateur Traveler Episode 498

Hear about travel to Indianapolis, Indiana as the Amateur Traveler talked to Nancy Parode the Senior Travel Expert at about travel to this mid-western capital.


Nancy says “I think that Indianapolis is one of the hidden gems of the United States. So many people fly over it or drive through it or they only go to perhaps the speedway and they miss out on a great mid-sized city with a really cool vibe, lots of things to do, good places to eat, excellent museums. It’s just a place I think everyone should go.”

Nancy starts us off at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway which even non-race enthusiasts can enjoy. You can get out on the track (in a bus, not an Indy car), watch a race or visit the museum there.

Of the city, she says “it’s a walkable city, it’s very friendly. Even before the Super Bowl of 2012, the city was going through a massive renovation and cleanup project. Some of the areas where warehouses had been sitting empty have been turned into restaurant space [the Wholesale District]. They built a bunch of neat museums.”

“There is a state park in downtown Indianapolis that has an enormous amount of green space. That is also home to the Indianapolis Zoo and quite a few of the top museums in Indy. In the Summer and early fall, you can rent bicycles and pedal buggies.”

Sports fans can take in a Colts game or a college basketball game in a state known for its college sports or visit the NCAA Hall of Champions. Art lovers will enjoy the Eiteljorg Museum of American Indians and Western Art, while history buffs can take a tour of the state capital, visit the Indian State Museum or the Benjamin Harrison Presidential Site.

If you are traveling with kids then Nancy says the Children’s Museum of Indianapolis is a must-see. A giant dinosaur model must agree as it sits in the front go the museum peeking in. If you are traveling with big kids or adults who just think they are big kids the largest gaming convention in North America, Gen Con, is held each summer in the city.

For side trips, Nancy recommends a fall visit to Brown County State Park for fall foliage and the artist colony at Nashville, Indiana. Other side trips she recommends are to the town of Fishers with the Conner Prairie Interactive History Park (living history museum) or to Columbus Indiana which is a company town designed by well-known architects.

subscribe: rss feed | Apple podcasts

right click here to download (mp3)

right click here to download (iTunes version with pictures)


DK Eyewitness travel guides

DK Eyewitness travel guides

DK Eyewitness Travel Guides – One of my favorite guidebook series

Show Notes

Official Indianapolis Site

Nancy on

Travel to Baltimore, Maryland – Episode 438

Indianapolis Motor Speedway

Crown Royal 400 at the Brickyard

Indianapolis Zoo

Bike Rentals in Indianapolis

Brown County State Park (for fall foliage)

Shapiros Delicatessen

Harry & Izzy’s Steakhouse

Indian State Museum

Eiteljorg Museum of American Indians and Western Art

Indianapolis Zoo White River Gardens

NCAA Hall of Champions

Benjamin Harrison Presidential Site

Indiana Historical Society


Fort Harrison State Park (riding stables)

The Children’s Museum of Indianapolis

Indianapolis Colts Grille

Kurt Vonnegut Memorial Library

James Whitcomb Riley Museum Home

Indianapolis Cultural Trail

Nancy on 60 and Me


What to do, see and eat in Indianapolis. Travel to Indianapolis, Indiana - Amateur Traveler Episode 498

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