This morning was another early morning (4:45 am) in order to leave Xi’an and head to our final city: Shanghai. Getting to the high speed train was much easier this time compared the last, and the ride was much more comfortable, despite being 6 hours long. I was able to keep myself busy by alternating between reading a book and napping. I also had a window seat this time, which definitely added to my comfort.
When we arrived in Shanghai, I was instantly in love. Shanghai offers many beautiful buildings, a rich history, and plenty of cool restaurants, bars, and cafes. Not to mention, our hotel is incredible. The hotel is in the French Concession, so the surrounding buildings, and area in general, have a French aesthetic. In addition to a beautiful location, the hotel has a bowling alley, indoor and outdoor tennis courts, a pool, a gym, a bar (or two?), and a beauty salon, amongst some other amenities. My room is also quite spacious with a cool view of the city.
After getting settled quickly, we went to the Shanghai History Museum, which had replicas of the people, the homes, the bars, the shops, and many other daily life scenes. The people looked extremely life-like, which was odd, but the miniature versions of the streets and buildings were so cool.
We then went to dinner, where we had a lazy Susan style meal minus the lazy Susan, which made things a little more hectic. The food was very good, but very spicy. I thought Xi’an was known for their spicy dishes, but this meal was certainly hotter. I was excited that this restaurant served cold drinks (water and a margarita-type juice) because apparently cold drinks are not all too common in China. This is a little thing that seems insignificant, but something that you begin to miss after a while. I also tried frog tonight, which was interesting; I neither liked nor disliked it.
When dinner was finished, we finally got to do what I had been waiting for all day (and sort of all week): the Huangpu River tour. We got on one of the several beautifully lit boats and floated along the river, taking pictures of the famous skyline on one side and other gorgeous glowing buildings on the other. It was so nice to be on the water and to take in the beautiful view. I love Shanghai so much already, and I cannot wait to see as much of it as I can in the coming four days!