Shanghai and Beijing were the major destinations on my 2015 trip to China. Out of my 3 day trips, I was really impressed with Nanjing. Hangzhou has 2 must-sees: West Lake and Lingyin Temple. Tianjin isn’t the most exciting place (although getting a great Italian dinner in Italian Style Town is worth the 30-minute train ride from Beijing). In Nanjing, you get a bang for your yuan.
Make no mistake. Beijing is not the cosmopolitan city that Shanghai is. (Unlike in Shanghai, I was often the only white person in sight on the subway in Beijing. I got stared at in Beijing at times. This never happened in Shanghai.) Regardless, imperial Beijing is where the history is. This is why the most spectacular sights I saw on my 2015 trip to China were for the most part in Beijing. [Read more…]
Shanghai is a fantastically vibrant city. This comes as no surprise as it’s the world’s largest city. When it comes to sightseeing, Shanghai has a good mix of old and new, but tilting very much towards the new. This also comes as not much of a surprise. Shanghai didn’t start to become a major city until the Western powers moved in and took charge after the First Opium War. That was just about 170 years ago. Compare that with Beijing, which has been a [Read more…]
The language issue was a challenge during my trip to China. And I did have some culinary frustrations. But China exceeded my expectations in so many ways. Perhaps my expectations were needlessly low. It didn’t help that my phrasebook had some helpful expressions such as, “What time does the hot water come on?” and “There is a rat in my room.” I read so many warnings about China before my trip. I was sort of expecting the worst. But those [Read more…]
My last day in China featured my now legendary triumphal dinner. But first, in the morning I migrated from the Beijing DoubleTree to the Hilton at the airport because I had an early flight out the next morning. After checking in, but before taking off for the Summer Palace, I relaxed in the lobby lounge with some fried spring rolls. Nothing like good American-style Chinese food in China!