My blog about travel adventures and a lot more.

Lost in Translation: Ancient Morning Versus Modern Afternoon

After spending our first night in China, there was a new day and new discoveries ahead of us. But first we had to find a place to change our Euros to Yuan. It might seem as an easy task but we read some stories about how there was always a lot of people in Chinese banks, how you waited sometimes for hours, how you had topress the right button written in Chinese for the right service and how people didn’t speak English. So you understand why we were not really confident … Though it was easy, the receptionist spoke English – not fluently but good enough, she helped us to fill in necessary forms and there were like three other customers. It is probably one of those situations when you expect the worst and then everything goes smoothly. So once the mission accomplished, the tourism could start.

Before reaching the entrance of the Yuyuan Garden, we walked in crowded streets of the old Chinese quarter, aka “Chinatown” (Nanshi) with an important number of jewelry stores (apparently, golden articles bought close to the temple are supposed to bring its owner good luck), tea houses, restaurants and souvenir shops. It felt a bit like a Chinese Disneyland. However, it’s a shame that most of the architecture is only imitation that replaced old traditional houses. After a while our heads started pounding and we were happy to find ourselves in a more tranquil place. We could get lost in/between numerous pavilions, halls, rockeries, ponds and cloisters of Yuyuan Garden. Nice place to relax for a while before being sucked back into busy streets of the quarter. Next stop, the God’s Temple. Saw it, took picture of it but I don’t know how to describe it. See for yourself.

And it was already lunch time … but this “gastronomic experience” is worth describing in a separate post. Really, believe me !

In the afternoon, we decided to go to Pudong. New economic and financial center* situated on the east bank of Huangpu river facing the Bund. I’m sure that all of you have already seen a picture of this famous panorama. Oriental Pearl Tower. Jin Mao Tower. Shanghai World Financial Center. A short walk on the Bund. (Not) Few pictures of the other side. Crossing the river by boat for only 2 Yuan. A long walk in Pudong. It looks that workers never stop there. You can hear construction noise even on Sunday afternoon. Cranes on the x th floor of many unfinished skyscrapers that will be probably even more impressive than already existing ones. And all this effort in order to dethrone its rival Hong Kong, ultimate challenge of Shanghai.

The second day was almost over. Before looking for a restaurant for the evening, we decided to take a drink in one of the cafes with a view on the Bund. As a daylight was fading step-by-step, we were enjoying every minute of changing colors of the skyline in front of us.

* There was no skyscraper decorating Pudong panorama until 1990. Until then it was the Bund considered as a “central business district” (since 1920). 


You like this entry and you wonder how our first day in China was like, then read the following:

Lost in Translation: Beyond First Impressions


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This entry was posted on April 28, 2012 by in Asia and tagged , , , , .
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