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Beijing/Shanghai

First stop in Asia

overcast

We arrived in Beijing airport past midnight, with only 2 full days ahead of us to pack in as much as possible. Entering the airport, there are sensors you walk through to detect if you have fever! An interesting experience!
In 48 hours we managed to do all of the following:
Forbidden city- a beautiful palace in the middle of Beijing- one could easily spend half a day here, it's massive
The temple of heaven
A Kung fu show- it was actually pretty cool
The summer palace
A steep climb up the Great Wall of china- a one hour drive outside the city- the best part of our trip here by far, stunning views, worth the steep stairs, although it didn't feel that way at times coming back down!
The Ming tombs
Tien a man square- the largest square in the world, definately looked like it!
The Olympic stadium- a big tourist attraction to go by since they spent millions of dollars on it and are making a huge loss on it
A tea ceremony
A visit to a silk factory
And lastly, some Peking duck- a must while in Beijing

Beijing is a massive concrete jungle! As our guide put it, given there are so many people (19million roughly!?!), one must adopt a philosophy of 'to squeeze or to be squeezed' to survive on the streets! There are just soooo many people! We had a wonderful guide on day two who provided us with all the history and background we could absorb. The architecture of the historical sites were amazing and unique compared to what we have seen in our other travels. English was a huge challenge so hiring a private guide was a must do on both days. It made everything ten times easier and we managed to get good advice on where to eat, shop, etc. There is plenty more of china to see but since this was our first glimpse, our next stop was to check out a very different city- shanghai.

Shanghai was more iof a New York equivalent, slightly easier to manage independently, , much less to see, more of the culture to absorb. Shanghai is a central export hub for China, situated on the water, with a new modern flair to it. The architecture is very different depending on which side of the bind you are looking at. On one side you see the new modern high rises that have been built in the last 20 odd years where as on the other side you so beautiful old European architecture. We ate some good food whilst here- the shanghanese dumplings being the best! They are dumplings filled with broth on th inside! Very tasty, so we managed to eat them the two days we spent here. Compared to Beijing where one could have spent more time, 2 days was ample in Shanghai.

Gotta run, next flight is boarding, off to Vietnam!

Posted by Rits blog 01:41 Archived in China

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Comments

Yummm! It is 8:30 am here and my mouth is watering for duck and those dumplings. Happy Asia trails!

10.22.12 by Nina

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