Shanghai Adventures Part 1

After a tough trip around Beijing, it was a bit refreshing to find this cute art district in Shanghai! Being an artist myself, I felt more at home than I had all trip. The cobble stone streets were surrounded by hole in the wall restaurants, boutiques, planters filled with succulents and small walk up bars only seating 4 people max.

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Loved the bars, they were only big enough for 2-4 people to sit…

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Art galleries lined the streets, local photographers proudly displaying their work…

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Then it was off to Old Shanghai Street which had a much older vibe…go figure!

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It’s absolutely shocking to see how much these men can pile onto their bikes, riding around the city, cutting corners, diving into traffic without a blink of the eye!

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I was dying to try a famous pork stemmed bun restaurant, but the massive size of the Yu Yuan Bazaar was daunting. However, I stuck to my guns on this and aside from getting a little “hangry (hungry and angry)” along the way, I found it!! The steamed buns were delicious! Although I had caught a cold at this point, I could still enjoy all the flavors of this traditional Chinese dish : ) I loved the presentation in the bamboo boxes…

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I think it was pretty obvious that I look like a tourist, aside from my open mouth and wide eyes, I was one of the tallest people around! However, I stuck out like a sore thumb enough for a lovely older lady to ask me if I was lost. After the shock of hearing english, I kindly replied no, and let her know I was just exploring the area. She said she has a secret spot she wanted to show me….now, under most circumstances I know better than to agree to a “secret spot” with any stranger, however this woman was the size of my little sister and felt that I could take her down without an ounce of effort if need be, so I followed! When in Rome….

She took me to the top of the bazaar, and what a view it was!!! We also dropped into an ancient tea house : )

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A major shopping street…only pedestrians allowed which is rare for the area. I learned very quickly that if it’s bigger than you, it has the right of way. No exceptions. It was nice to walk around and not have to worry about being clipped by a motorbike or taxi…

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A late afternoon was spent enjoying a walk along the boardwalk called The Bund. It’s an absolutely beautiful view of the city, separated by the river. I tired to stick it out long enough to enjoy it but Shanghai was still extremely cold, about 40 degrees!

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Something I found so interesting about the city was the French influence. One side, you have this amazing skyline with modern architecture and the other is something you would pass by on the streets of Paris…

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I felt like my first day in Shanghai was a success, and I was VERY VERY thankful for a little sun and slightly more clear air…

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