Monday, November 30, 2009

CHINA: The Bund


Amidst the suffocating smog and the constant honking of motorcycles in its narrow streets, Shanghai stands proud and tall as China's largest city with over 20 million people and as the commercial and financial center of the Middle Kingdom. Shanghai conjured up images of New York City in my head -- the crowded streets, its cosmopolitan population, and its skyscrapers that made me realize how tiny I was. The city was perpetually busy and everyone seemed to be rushing to go from one place to the next. Most of the people I met were unfriendly and snobby which is probably why I didn't like Shanghai as much as Beijing, the next city we visited. Nevertheless, Shanghai is a lovely city -- busy and serious at daylight but hip and chic at night.

Busy Shanghai


Rice for cash?



No, that's not a spaceship behind me. 
(L-R: Raf, Jose, Ayyoub, Nathan)

To tourists, Shanghai is particularly known for The Bund, an area by the Huang Pu river that showcases a number of buildings of various architectural designs -- Baroque and Gothic, to name a few. The skyline at night reminded me of Tsim Shah Tsui in Hong Kong because of the bright lights juxtaposed with quaint buildings that reflected on the river. The temperature was about three degrees when we strolled The Bund that night. At this temperature, you have to wear at least a few layers of shirts, a jacket, a bonnet and a pair of gloves lest you lose your limbs to the cold. In spite of that, we had the smart idea to eat a McDonald's sundae cone for dessert. That was the only time I've seen ice cream stay frozen that long! We ate while watching the choreographed lights show from the gigantic building in front of us. Brrr!

Ice Cream!

Brain freeze galore!

Lights Show

More lights

What next?

Didn't see that coming!


The spaceship-looking tower is called the Oriental Pearl Tower, completed in 1995. Attracting about three million tourists a year, this tower is actually a television tower with some observation decks at the top. A concert was also held here some time back. It looks like an alien mothership that could take off to space at any moment. Up close, it's candy-like colors and the beams of light from its base made the tower into a contemporary masterpiece on the night sky canvass.

Pudong Skyline

Walking around The Bund

Floating Restaurant

Like Tsim Shah Tsui

The base of the tower

3, 2, 1...Houston we have a problem.

The moon as its spotlight

Drinking a cocktail after a long day of sightseeing while hearing the hustle and bustle of people rushing home never felt as relaxing as the first night we spent in Shanghai. With the Pudong Skyline in view and the rest of China to discover, we raised our glasses for a toast.  More stories about Shanghai in the next entry!

1 comment:

  1. hey its nice.. free vacation in asia.. please cek on