And so after spending 17 hours in the train from Luoyang (the journey went by surprisingly fast and comfortable) I stepped off the train in a completely different world than what I’ve seen in previous week. Just the train station itself was modern, clean and without poor looking people hanging around with their huge bags. The area around the train station (which happens to be the area where my hotel is located too) is full of skyscrapers as well and I just adore the view from my hotel room window!
Since it was still pretty early and I wasn’t that tired I thought I can go and check why everyone is so crazy about Shanghai and if I was right with my feelings for it. But before exploring I decided to try out a vegetarian restaurant I read about both in Lonely Planet and on Wikitravel. I don’t know why but I’m really careful with food here and if I have a chance to choose between Chinese and Western I’ll always go for the second. But today I felt like trying something new out of the Chinese cuisine and I really enjoyed the noodles I had.
As the area I ended up in was really nice, modern and big city alike I thought it’s a good idea to walk all the way down to the riverside, after all what 2kms is…And it was a pleasant walk that made me realize that after all Shanghai isn’t so much different than the rest of China. Sure, there’re lots and lots of skyscrapers around but between them there’re hidden narrow streets with local food bars, people are driving their bikes like crazy and there’s a mess in the backstreets like everywhere else. Funny thing, I was passing by streets that apparently were specialized in selling certain things – first there were rows of shops with music instruments that eventually turned into sewing oriented shops (like shops selling only ribbons or buttons…)
And then I came to the Bund… and it literally took me breath away! The view over there is amazing, really! The modern skyline, the television tower, the busy river. I think I could spend the whole day just staring at that view! I’ve never seen a city like that before! The Bund itself is a long promenade on the riverside, full of people and great opportunities to take awesome pictures. The stroll down it is a truly enjoyable experience
and I’m sure I’ll come back there during my stay in Shanghai, to walk there some more. I was also aimed for a famous Shanghai tea scam but that’s another kind of story.
One of the streets that come out of the Bund is the famous East Nanjing Road. Overcrowded, full of colorful neon and busy shops was exactly what I pictured big Asian cities and reminded me of Wangfujing in Beijing.
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Shanghai is definitely so different than the rest of China yet kind of similar at the same time. So far I enjoy the city the most and I’m really looking forward to explore more!
If you think of visiting China or just want to read more about the country take a look what else I wrote about it!
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