Sunday (1st) - after a slow and inefficient disembarkment process (we aren't in Japan any more Toto) we made ourselves to our hostel - the Koala Garden (judging by the name and cafe menu it must have been owned by an Aussie). Once there we bumped into some friends from the boat, Brian, Leslie (both from Montreal) and Elijah (Chicago), we decided to hang out and explore Shanghai together. First up was lunch as we were all starving! Then we took the metro to People's Square and took a very hot stroll to the Bund, a popular raised walkway along the Huangpu river which has a great view, not only of the skyline but also the strip of impressive sandstone colonial buildings. After our Bund fix we went to a schezuan restaurant in a popular eating area to meet up with Julian - a Canadian who lives in Shanghai who Brian had some connection with.
Near the museum
By the time we were processed off the ferry we were starving and the first place we found was a ramen chain restaurant, where we were only showed the set menu, which included a quite nice tea cup and tea set with the meal. Unfortunately we did not want any more stuff to cart around, so we did a reverse runner from the restaurant and left it behind. We saw the lady open the door and look for us once we had left so made a hasty trip around the corner out of sight.
The city skyline view from the Bund
Us and Leslie at the Bund
Monday (2nd) - our second and final day in Shanghai. Now even though Expo was on and nearly every person was asking us if we were going, we did not find the prospect of lining up for a single exhibit for 3+ hours terribly appealing so we decided to do some regular sightseeing. First up we headed to the Shanghai Museum - partly to escape the heat! It was actually a fantastic museum, given China's long and rich history I guess we shouldn't be surprised but the quantity and condition of some of the bronze and ceramic pieces (some 6000 years old) were quite amazing. We only got to see 2 out of the 5 exhibits! Afterwards we made our way to the Yuyuan gardens, where it started to rain. However there was enough time during the break to have a bit of a wonder around. Following that we headed to the Bund again for a bit of dinner.
Thousand Buddha rock carving in the museum
The Yuyuan gardens
The Bund at night.
After a successful meal we made our way to the station (via the hostel to get our luggage) for our first train leg, the 21:30 overnight from Shanghai to Beijing. We shared a very comfortable 4 berth cabin with a snoring Chinese woman and her young daughter.
The train from Shanghai to Beijing, which took 10 hrs and travelled at up to 200km/h! A pretty impressive ride (especially considering the price).