China—the name alone makes you want to get packing. It’s going places, so jump aboard, go along for the ride and see where it’s headed.
Its modern face is dazzling, but China is no one-trick pony. The world’s oldest continuous civilization isn’t all smoked glass and brushed aluminum and while you won’t be tripping over artifacts – three decades of round-the-clock development and rash town planning have taken their toll – rich seams of antiquity await. Serve it all up according to taste: collapsing sections of the Great Wall, temple-topped mountains, villages that time forgot, languorous water towns, sublime Buddhist grottoes, and ancient desert forts. Pack a well-made pair of traveling shoes and remember the words of Laotzu: “a journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step.”