We were involved in an unfortunate car accident on our departure day. Well, it was our car that started it against two unfortunate mini-vans to the front. There was quite a noticeable dent on their side while our car managed to escape with a few scratches to the front (it is of BUICK-made). At the time of accident, all the vehicles on the road are pretty much bumper to bumper, compounded by the fact that our driver was feeling sleepy at that time.
Once the accident has happened, the negotiations started on how it should be resolved. The sum in dispute ranges from 600RMB to 1200 RMB. The road maintenance crew came in to help and finally the police was roped in until a settlement was reached. All in all, we were delayed by over an hour, with us reaching the airport at 3.30pm; 3.50pm is our flight departure time.
The check-in counters were closed and we have to pushed our flight to the next available timing at 11.50pm. That leaves us with 8 hours of free time.
This is a splendid opportunity to explore Shanghai (again)!!!
And the chance to ride the legendary Maglev.
We were pretty much shown the way to the Maglev station. A two-way ticket cost 80RMB, as against a single trip which is 50RMB. We bought the return ticket, and the staff informed us that the last train departs from Shanghai at 9pm.
There was quite a large crowd waiting outside the ticket gates and we went in together. From their conversations, I found out they were Japanese.
Here is a snapshot of the MagLev, it means Magnetic Levitation for short.
The train is pretty packed and we were one of the last few that got in.
And here we go. It takes 40 minutes by car to reach Shanghai city but the Maglev is able to accomplish that in 8 minutes. The maximum speed attainable by the Shanghai Maglev is 430 km/hr. Below is a short clip of the view outside, it is really fast!!
The train start to decelerates shortly after it has reached the maximum speed of 430 km/hr. The station we alighted is at the suburbs of Shanghai. To get to the main city area, we have to take the MRT which is just next to the MagLev station. It is another 15 minutes for us to get to Shanghai central. The station we are alighting is at Shimen Yi Road. It is just next to Nanjing West Road.
Shimen Yi road is famous for its shopping streets and food. We are here for the second reason, to go for the famous Xiao Long Bao. It is my second time here, so I am kind of bringing my friend here for the first time.
The chefs are busy at work preparing all the Xiao Long Baos. During normal lunch, dinner and over the weekends, there will always be long queue and it will be quite a challenge to get a seat in the restaurant.
Since it is only 5.30pm, we managed to get a seat easily. After our meal, we went on to Tao Bao City which is just a 5 minutes walk away. While showing my friend around, I can’t resist the temptation of doing some light shopping there.
After shopping, we went down to our main sightseeing area for the night at Nanjing East road. As my friend has only visited the famous Nanjing East road during the day, I told him the night scene is many times better than the day.
The city central is full of lights and sounds. With performances like the one going on below. It showcases the olden Shanghai 1930s performance.
It is down to the shopping street with all the neons lights flashing around.
Here we have the thermometer again. The weather now is quite pleasant and it feels like air-con wherever we go, as compared to winter the last time we were here.
Finally we arrived at main Shanghai viewpoint.
This time round, I intend to cross over and see what is there.
We took the Bund sightseeing tour which cost around 30RMB per person.
The ‘tour’ is just a guided car driven through a tunnel full of laser lights.
We arrived opposite and see all the sights from up close. I came to realize that here is the actual financial hub of Shanghai city. There are towering skyscrapers all around us and it looks all new and modern. Wide boulevards and modern architectural designs make you feel as if this is not China. It looks very similar to Odaiba of Japan, a modern futuristic city with a television station. Anyone who want to see modern China should visit the this part of Shanghai, it is many times larger than the financial centre of Singapore.
I am quite fascinated by this skyscraper which is currently the tallest structure in Shanghai. Though it is only 88 stories high, but it feels as if it is reaching for the sky.
And finally we bid farewell to Shanghai city at 8.30pm and be on our way back to the airport.