Magellan took three years to circumnavigate the globe. We’d gone half-way around the world by day three of our holiday. We flew from Ontario to Dallas to New York City to Paris, and then from Paris to Singapore to Shanghai. And our trip was just getting started. We were now faced with three nights in Shanghai. Oh, what to do.

We arrived in the late afternoon, and there was just enough time to begin a food tour.

Probably the most difficult thing we ate was water-snake, as we were present when the snake was selected and killed.

Once it was fried, the shapes were comparable to pork ribs, but there was very little meat sitting atop the hundreds of little bones.

The next morning began with a stunning view from our room on the top floor at the Shangri-La Hotel in Pudong.

Taxis and metros are fine, but we found Shanghai surprisingly walkable.

Xiaolongbao is my favorite thing in Shanghai. These little pillows of goodness begin with pork on the inside, but once they are steamed, some of the pork liquifies to create a hot, soupy broth that tastes so good!

Xiaolongbao is fairly ubiquitous in Shanghai, but our favorite restaurant is located on Taikang Rd., as noted by the Google Maps screenshot. (Google is blocked in China, but there are ways around The Great Firewall. More about that later.)

At night, Shanghai really comes to life.

For those who’ve never been to China, you’ll likely marvel at how clean, how well-manicured, and how high-tech it is. (Just about everyone pays for goods and services with their phone.) I first traveled to China in 2004, and what surprised me most was that it didn’t meet my perception of “Communist.” I’m not sure what I was expecting, but what I saw was a world immersed in free trade and capitalism.


Details:

VPN: Download the Express VPN app, and do a free one-week trial or pay for a membership. Express VPN will enable you to access Google and various social media while in China.

Visa: China is currently granting 10-year Visas. (Instead of driving back and forth to the Chinese Embassy, we used Allied Passport.)

Hotel: Shangri-La Pudong (This hotel is excellent. However, while we received an extraordinary rate and upgrade, we’d likely stay on The Bund next time, as it’s closer to the things we’re attracted to.)

Food Tour: There are many options, but we went with UnTour, and they were great.

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