Miss World visits the Wetlands and goes shopping!
No signs of slowing down for our contestants. They were whisked away to the wetlands near Changshu where it was all aboard stunning wooden boats and out into the wending waterways for a cultural cruise.
The contestants arrive at the Changshu wetlands
Feeling very intrepid, the ladies were motored through waving fronds of water plants and at one stage a fish leapt out of the water and on to the deck of one of the boats. The guide informed them that in China it is considered a lucky omen!
Heading out into the waterways
The boats docked at a traditional Chinese village where the cobbled streets were a hive of activity. A wedding was taking place in the courtyard of an old building and (in another display of Chinese warmth and hospitality) one of the ladies was invited in!
The representatives for France and Honduras experiencing local cuisine
In other buildings, traditional dishes and sweets were being served up and the contestants were able to enjoy hot pancakes, red- and green-bean teas, sesame and date biscuits, and the slightly less traditional but very welcome orange ice lollies!
A spot of accessories shopping for the contestants
Souvenir hats and fans were also very popular and many of the representatives took the chance to purchase the colourful pieces before heading for the karts that whisked them back to the buses for the next stop.
The representatives for Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland hitch a ride on the karts
Anticipation was in the air as the Miss World convoy pulled up outside Changshu Clothing City. The huge shopping centre produces 20 per cent of all the clothing manufactured in China, has been rated as the number one professional garment centre in the country for the past three years, and is aiming to be a global shopping destination.
The entrance to the Changshu Clothing City
The lucky contestants were ushered into a plush theatre where the centre’s director told them, ‘Nothing is more delightful than meeting friends from abroad. Your arrival is like waves of cold breeze in this hot sun’. He recalled 2005, when Miss World last visited to ‘promote peace, beauty and love’ and expressed a hope that they would be able to support Miss World Beauty with a Purpose initiatives in the future.
The ladies from Norway and Germany are welcomed and presented with gift boxes containing silk scarves
As a token, each girl was given a beautiful blue and white silk scarf, printed with an ornate pattern and told, ‘Marilyn Monroe said a scarf is a gift from heaven so we hope you will wear it and have happy memories of Changshu’.
The contestant representing Thailand arrives at Changshu Clothing City Mall for some shopping time
An entire floor of the vast shopping centre was then closed off especially for the contestants to browse. If there was an award for Top Shopper at Miss World 2012, it’s unclear who would have won. The girls were thrilled to see so many shops full of clothing. It felt like mere moments before the allotted hour was up and they were whisked away, bags bulging.
The contestants browsing in some of the many shops
Remember to check back here for more updates on Miss World.
For broadcast details of the final show, please see below (please note that screenings for other territories will be announced soon):
The Miss World final will be broadcast on TV5 in the Philippines on August 18th at 19.30 local time
The Miss World final will be broadcast on Paris Premier in France on August 18th at 13.30 local time
The Miss World final will be broadcast on Televisa in Mexico on August 18th at 07.00 local time
The Miss World final will be broadcast on Star TV in Turkey on August 18th at 17.00 local time
The Miss World final will be broadcast on Zee TV in India on August 18th at 17.00 local time
The Miss World final will be broadcast on Venevision in Venezuela on August 18th at 7.30 local time
The Miss World final will be broadcast on Medcom in Panama on August 18th at 07.00 local time
The Miss World final will be broadcast on RCTI in Indonesia on August 18th at 19.00 local time
The Miss World final will be broadcast on SABC in South Africa on August 18th at 13.30 local time