In January, when we arrived in Xiamen, China after a year in Europe, it sort of felt like our journey was entering a second stage. We were the same people on the same mission, but it was hard not to feel like a milestone had been reached. We decided to celebrate the occasion by doing something we always do, but from a different perspective. Instead of going out to do another photoshoot, we hired a local photographer to do a photoshoot for us on the Island of Gulangyu.

A family portrait from our trip to Gulangyu in Xiamen, China

Playing outside the old American church on Gulangyu.

playing hide and seek during our photoshoot on gulangyu in Xiamen, China.

Lisa running toward the camera near the churches on Gulangyu in Xiamen, China.

The added benefit of this was that we got a few more photos of the whole family together. Normally it’s just Lisa and me posing while we travel, and it was kind of nice having Jake on our side of the camera for once. Jake liked it too, even though he doesn’t speak Chinese and couldn’t understand the photographer’s instructions. Gulangyu is a popular tourist attraction for the Chinese, but we felt like we were the only westerners there. We got a lot of looks, and we kind of felt like we were just another attraction for the other travelers. Lisa loved the extra attention though.

Walking down the streets of Gulangyu off the coast of Xiamen, China.

Lisa running ahead of us during our Gulangyu photoshoot.

Lisa taking photos of Gulangyu in Xiamen, China.

Exploring Xiamen china on the island of Gulangyu.

Lisa playing with a shell in a Gulangyu garden in Xiamen, China.

Relaxing in a garden in Gulangyu, China.

Lisa learning about succulents on Gulangyu during our photoshoot.

Jake would always rather be taking photos himself, but he admitted that it was kind of fun. Last night, he was looking through the images and pointing out which ones he thought he looked good in. Although he did note to himself that in the future when he kisses me in photos he’s going to pucker his lips more. That should be… interesting.

Jake teaching Lisa about nature during our photoshoot in Xiamen, China on the island of Gulangyu.

Hanging out on Gulangyu during our stay in Xiamen, China.

As always, Lisa just wanted to play games and explore during the photoshoot. But she brought her brand new toy camera with her, and confirmed that she did in fact know what was going on. Whenever she “took a picture” of us or the photographer, she even called us over to look at the “screen” on the back of the camera. I think in the future we’re going to have to start a second blog, just to publish the photos Lisa takes!

Lisa turns the tables on our photographer on Gulangyu in Xiamen, China.

If you’d like to see more of the scenery on GulangYu, check out our guide for westerners. And of course if you’d like to see more amazing places our destination page is the place to go. Thanks for reading, we really appreciate your support.