In March 2012, I found myself working incredibly long hours and sleeping very little – my full-time MBA was well underway. Thankfully, one of my modules (Doing Business in Emerging Markets) would take place overseas, which meant I’d be afforded a brief change of scenery (albeit with even less sleep). My fellow classmates and I had the choice of going to either Brazil or China, and for me it was an easy decision. Don’t get me wrong, I know that Brazil is supposed to be amazing and it remains very much on my bucket list – but for a long time, I had really wanted to experience China.

I had also recently gotten my hands on a Canon EOS 550d, my first ‘proper’ camera. Below you’ll find a few of the photos I took on the trip (I have only just found the memory card – a mere three years later!).

The China photos

Chinese goldfish

Goldfish in Shanghai are definitely not camera-shy.


View down a path

I’m a big fan of Stanley Kubrick and Wes Anderson films, so I really like symmetrical shots. This one was taken in a park in Beijing.


Cards in the cloisters

This cloister is a real bustle of activity. The men along the left are all playing cards, which they seemed to be taking extremely seriously. This was taken in the same park in Beijing.


Lake island

This required very little (if any) photographic skill – just point and click. What a scene.


Rob on bridge

Rocky Balboa, eat your heart out. Here I am standing on the bridge from the background of the last shot. It was really cold that day.


Ribbon in a park

I spent a good few minutes here messing about with my shutter speed. Thankfully, the little kid was in the right place at the right time (down to the last millisecond, that is).


Rob at Tiananmen Square

Here I am at Tiananmen Square trying desperately not to look like I am freezing. No idea what I was looking at!


Beijing rooftops

Rooftops of the Forbidden City in Beijing. At 980 buildings in total and having required more than a million workers, it’s quite a home that the emperors built for themselves.


Through the gate

Another attempt at a symmetrical or ‘one-point perspective’ shot.


Looking up, then down a typical palace staircase.


Terracotta Warriors

The Terracotta Army – the attention to detail on these life-sized figures is incredible. Well worth the overnight train journey from Beijing to Xi’an.


Tea selection

One does not simply order order ‘tea’ in Xi’an – be prepared for a lot of options!


Great Wall of China

The Great Wall. A far steeper climb in parts than I had expected.

That’s it

After an amazing trip, it was back to Dublin and back to my studies for me. I hope I did the sights some small justice with the shots above. The scenery itself deserves all the credit of course; it really is breathtaking when you’re there in person. If you haven’t already been and you have an interest in this incredible country, I strongly recommend checking it out some day.