User profile: Marco Polo

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Forums > Food & Drink > Healthy options - identity crisis.

Tigertiger. I'm over 50. I left corporate life two years ago and was probably heading for a heart attack at some point. My wife and I have had a lot of time to look into health and nutrition while we were in Kunming over the last 18 months. My wife is a celiac so I ended up following her diet. I started reading a lot about nutrition. There is a great site run by Mark Sisson called Mark's Daily Apple (go into the forum section and read what others have experienced - it may change your life). It's basically a primal regime and you can make it very pleasurable (we are foodies too!).
First cut out smoking. Second, cut out grains (no bread, pizza, cereal, beer etc) and pull back on sugar.I agree with Onelegged on saturated fats (again read up in Mark's site for explanation) - don't give those up. My cholesterol stats all went the right way, I lost 14 kg, threw away my acid reflux pills (never used one in Kunming), and felt amazing. On the exercise front, brisk walking is one of the best exercises you can do. Re food sources - Sal's have omeletes, salads, wine, burgers(without the bun), rice (and even fries!). Cut back sugar but you need to have the occasional treat (Sal's choc cake and iced cream are gluten free). Barbara at Slice of Heaven will do a gluten free roast dinner on a Sunday. You could also cook yourself using the amazing fruit, meat and veg in the markets (why do you think most Chinese ar so slim?). I'll stop here but contact me if you want more ideas/resources.

Forums > Travel Yunnan > Skiing in Yunnan???

I looked into this topic earlier this year. I considered Yunnan (too under-developed), Yabuli (logistics are a pain from Harbin and too cold most of year, plus monopoly deal with leisure firm makes it expensive for China), Hokkaido (went skiing in Japan several years ago and it was twice the price of skiing in Europe!). In the end I went for, what turned out to be, a great solution. I flew to Beijing, then arranged a car (buses go there too) to a town called Chongli in Chongli County (about 4 hours drive north of Beijing). There are a few hotels there you can stay in. From Chongli you can get to two ski resorts easily by taxi: Duolemeidi(sounds like Dolomites - so you can guess the Italians have invested in it). It's relatively small but good lifts so you can spend a few days skiing here. Then you can go to a much bigger resort called Wanlong (again about 15 mins by taxi). This has many more pistes - all grades and you could easily ski here for a week and not get bored.

You should know that the apres ski scene is dull as dishwater generally in China, so don't bother staying at the resorts themselves. Chongli has some things to do, but the great thing about this trip is that you can top and tail it with a few days in Beijing where the restaurant/bar scene is great. Re skiwear, I bought some Salomon and Northface clothing in Kunming (shop in Long Xiang Jie - thanks Tom!) at a knock-down price (probably seconds/over-run, but not fakes), then I rented boots/skis at the resorts (I have size 48 European feet and there was no problem - they even broke open a new box in Duolemeidi!). The other great thing about skiing in China is that midweek you practically have the whole place to yourself - imagine no queues!
Finally, remember that these places cater for pisted downhill skiing. If you are an off-piste powder skier, there are others on this forum far better qualified to advise.
I did also try a couple of smaller resorts 30 mins from Beijing but, to be honest, the low altitude and lateness in the season meant the experience was not a good one.
If you want to get further info, or if you want me to send you a couple of photos, let me know. I would be more than happy to help.

Forums > Living in Kunming > trouble after ipod repair

I think it's worth checking the price at the Apple authorised service centres in Kunming. If you check the Apple site, there are two in Kunming. I took my wife's MacBook to one yesterday. They were super-efficient. Admittedly I didn't pay anything as I had Apple Care cover, but you ought to check the price as the quality of the fix will be high. The one I used is Getronics (major global brand in desktop/mobile management). Address: Serviceone Getronics(Beijing) Limited Kunming Branch,
Room 501, 121 Plaza, No 46, 121 Rd, Kunming, Yunnan,650031

Telephone: 0871-5107078

Good luck!

Forums > Food & Drink > where to buy good red wine

If anyone's interested in the wine market here in China, there's a really interesting online paper produced by The Drinks Business at the bottom of this post. With taxes and duties adding up to 47% (plus middlemen adders on top) you can understand why foreign wine suppliers are shipping very low quality wine to China. In terms of Kunming, my simple logic says, if the country of origin has managed to do a deal with China, and the exchange rate is good, and they are a low cost quality producer BUY THAT WINE! Bottom line is that countries like Chile and Argentina will generally provide better value for money here in Kunming compared to Australian or French wine. I generally use Metro for South American wine and The Box for Italian (bit of a treat). I steer clear of all others. I did find a really good supplier of Spanish wine in Beijing last March, who will supply to Kunming (if anyone wants details, let me know). Here's the link I mentioned at the top (hope it works!)[...]


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We eat so much more complex carbs in the West. Historically the Chinese diet has been more aligned to paleo (vegetables, fruit and some meat/fish); hence their relatively good health and fitness. As soon as the golden arches arrived it was the start of the obesity epidemic. I wouldn't be so concerned about fat and exercise, more about sugar, wheat and complex carbs in all the processed food. Stop eating these and I think you will have gone a long way to stopping this getting out of control in China. I appreciate it's easier said than done.

Does anyone have any information about this new cycle path? I heard mention it was now open and there was information on GoKunming (even a website about it). I cannot find any reference to it, other than this thread from 2008. Does anyone have more information?



My wife and I went along to Slice of Heaven last night for the Sunday roast dinner. It was absolutely outstanding and made a really nice change for us. Barbara even went out of her way to make gluten-free options, including desserts, for us. It was like being at a dinner-party at home where we could meet new people. Fun was had by all. It was also great value. We will definitely be going back again.