Monday, January 28, 2013

Travel: China Bound

 China is one of the most mysteriously beautiful countries in the world.
Recently I was able to visit this country and even though it wasn't my first visit to China, it was one of my favourite visits by far.  I'm not really sure what made this visit more memorable considering the fact that this visit was the shortest one yet overseas (only one week) but maybe it was because I went with one of my best friends, who is quite the world-traveller herself, or maybe it was because we left the craziness of Shanghai and visited one of the outer-lying (not to be mistaken for boring or quaint) provinces for a couple days or perhaps because my relatives who live in Shanghai were just so amazingly hospitable, but whatever the reason, it was quite the whirlwind trip I won't be able to forget anytime soon.

Some of the things I love about China is the fact that it is very modern yet still tries very hard to hold on to its history.  The skyline of Shanghai exposes the ultra-modern high-rises but as soon as you start walking around the city, you notice all the low-rise "hutong" style houses/buildings that the locals still live in.  Then there are the numerous provinces within the country, each province having a completely different "feel" to it and finally, the fact that among the Mao-ists there exists an overabundance of Christians, Atheists and just the right speckle of Muslims.  It's quite the country and I can't wait to go back when the next opportunity arises.
Approximately 2 hour flight south of Shanghai, well worth travelling to even for a couple nights.

 YiLing River
Beautiful, mystical, romantic and out of this world. Imagine a 437-kilometre long river surrounded by rock-like mountains that shoot straight up 100's of feet.

 Xiaolongbao (a.k.a. Shanghai Dumplings)
There are 2 types, steamed and fried.  The way the juices burst through your mouth when you bite into the steamed ones is just delicious.

 Shanghai, China
57th floor of the Marriot overlooking Shanghai for miles. A very modern yet classy hotel.


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