Shanghai (Xmas Hols Day 1)

We’ve just come back from a 9 day holiday in the Jiangsu province of China.

We saw so many things I don’t know how to blog about them, if I do one post by monument, I’ll be writing about this trip for the next 2 months…I guess I’ll do one post for each day then.

 

We flew out from Shenzhen since the flights from HK are considered international and thus more expensive. The flight to Shanghai is just under 2 hours, so it’s pretty close. We arrived on Thursday evening, so we didn’t visit anything that day, just went straight to a restaurant to stuff ourselves with food!

Shanghai cuisine is famous for fish and seafood, noodles and steamed buns.I love steamed buns and noodles so didn’t miss a chance to stuff myself. The portions were quite big in Shanghai so we had to calm down on the amount of food we ordered.

On Friday we visited Zhujiajiao, an ancient water village on the outskirts of Shanghai. It’s about 1700 years old and has 36 stone bridges crossing many little rivers.

The village is very cute, with willow trees, little wooden boats and old houses. However, all houses that line the river banks have been turned into tourist shops, selling the same things one after the other (silk scarves, tea, fans…). I thought that was such a pity: 50 shops,  all selling the same stuff! I guess locals have no choice; they need to make money from the tourists one way or another.

While we were there we visited the Kezhi Garden, also known as the Ma family garden.

We had lunch in a traditional tea house, were a lady was performing Pingtan. Pingtan is a traditional art that mixes talking, singing and instruments to tell a story. Here is a little video from YouTube if you wonder what this sounds like.

After that we returned to Shanghai and visited the City God Temple/Yu Garden, which is located in the old walled city. We didn’t visit the temple itself but the area surrounding it, which is a bit like an old town center.

We then walked down Nanjing Road, which leads to The Bund and is now the world’s longest shopping street.

The Bund is an interesting place; it showcases the history of colonisation with many historical buildings built by the French, British, Americans… It started as a British settlement but was later turned into an International settlement. Jeff said it may look beautiful, but the Chinese dislike it, as it reminds them of how they were invaded by so many different western countries.

We took photos of the famous Shanghai skyline from the waterfront promenade and called it a day.

Little did we know that few days later people would die there crushed in a stampede…

 

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