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Right, back to the cycling! My little jaunt off to Hong Kong was successful as my passport has now been graced with a brand new Chinese visa, good for another month in the country.

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One of the new Tim Ho Wan locations in Olympian City 2, Hong Kong.

One of the new Tim Ho Wan locations in Olympian City 2, Hong Kong.

A few years ago a story did the rounds of the British newspapers detailing a Hong Kong dim sum canteen boasting the nickname “The cheapest michelin-starred restaurant on earth”. The famed Michelin guide isn’t known for giving out awards casually and waiting times of several hours to get at the treats within seemed to confirm this place wasn’t all hype. I made a mental note that if I ever went to Hong Kong I’d track the place down.

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Further apologies to the cycling fans! I’ve been smashing through various writing projects during my time off in Hong Kong (putting out 10,000 words a day into various tasks) and catching up on blogs is one of them. Back in January 2014 I headed into the former British protectorate of Somaliland. On the overland route to the country from Ethiopia I stopped in several places along the way, one of the most fascinating being Harar, well known for it’s urban Hyena’s…

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Beached ships in the Port of Berbera, Somaliland.

Another deviation from the cycling posts for those of you following along with that. I’ve currently got some down time in Hong Kong, whilst my passport is in the Chinese embassy hopefully getting a new visa stamped in it, and figured I’d catch up on some of the posts that have been sitting in my “To Do” folder on my laptop. We now jump back to my winter trip in January 2014 to the breakaway state Somaliland, a centre of stability in the otherwise crumbling nation of Somalia.

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Deep fried Tibetan bread in Xiahe.

Tough old stint down from Tibetan plateau to Xian to make it in time for my visa run to Hong Kong. A short update as I won’t stick to my usual format of a linear run through of the last 8 days as it has been a boring enough to ride, let alone to read, but in summary there have been two 100 mile days, lots of rain, mud, infected wounds and so many car horns tooting that I have begin to lose my grip on sanity…

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Well I’ve reached the end of my scenic detour and will now be heading straight down to Xian to do my visa run to Hong Kong. The last few days have been incredible visiting the various monasteries in Qinghai and Southern Gansu which have led to this being a rather photo heavy, and cycling light, post!

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Safety first lads.

Short few days since the last post but they’ve been interesting. I went over the best Tibetan pass so far, had some great scenery riding through a canyon with a Buddhist mural, a detour taking me down my own private gorgeĀ on an animal track and finally hitting the 9,000 mile marker…

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It has been a mammoth two days of cycling over the mountains. Snow storms, a 4,120 metre pass, accidentally riding through a city closed to foreigners and the icing on the cake… a 230km day (144 miles).

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My Chinese visa extension, finally!

My Chinese visa extension, finally!

Well I’m finally back on the road after mine and Stephens visa ordeal in Lanzhou. A typhoon has been twirling its way across the sea to the east of China leading to pretty much non stop rain. Despite this, and a particularly bad run of electronics dying, I have made it up onto the Qinghai-Tibet plateau!

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This will be a departure from the normal travelog posts for the bike trip from London to Shanghai. All was going well this week for my tough deadline of crossing China from the Kazakh border to Shanghai within the 60 day visa deadline until two days ago when, completely out of my hands, the dream of making it across in 60 days was shattered…

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