With both Shapiros in tow, I am off to Shanghai to explore the world’s largest city (!!). I actually just googled that― I knew that Shanghai was the largest city in China, but I had no idea just how big that would be. Nearly 25 million, as it turns out, which is actually larger than the population of the entire Australian continent.
All the details: Shanghai
Getting there: Take the world’s fastest high speed passenger train from Beijing to Shanghai, covering the distance in just 4.5 hours at nearly 200km/hour. Tickets for 2nd class are around 500RMB, and can be purchased at the station; check out this guide if you don’t have experience with Chinese train stations (and especially if you don’t speak Mandarin).
Where to stay: Make a booking at Captain Youth Hostel, which offers clean but inexpensive beds for around $12/night in The Bund, Shanghai’s waterfront district.
When we arrive, it definitely seems large, but just not as hectic as you would expect for a city of this size. Certainly nothing like Ho Chi Minh or Bangkok or even Rio. The first thing I notice is the air, which is a million times less polluted than Beijing’s, and thank god for that. I’ve only just recovered enough from the disgusting bout of smog-induced conjunctivitis to put my right contact back in and I’m still suffering majorly under the bronchitis brought on from the same pollution. (I’m actually still on antibiotics from Becka’s saintly doctor neighbour who brought her stethoscope over to diagnose me and dose me up.)
But ailments aside, Becka, Mikey, and I all check in to our hostel for the weekend and busy ourselves with some fancy cocktails on the roof of the building. Becka knows a few club promoters in the city who can get us in and keep us in drinks all night for free, so we set upon the town for an evening of fun that is interrupted only by my declining physical condition.
(I was super slack on taking photos in Shanghai, so featured image via)