Destination China 2016
Starting in Shanghai we hit the ground running day one with a bus trip to the water towns of Moon River and Wuzhen; we were the only westerners in sight in Moon river where we enjoyed our first Chinese lunch, it was a local restaurant not accustomed to westerners and they had to scurry around to find some knives and forks...of course we oriental experienced Aussies could all use chop sticks anyway!! We walked through the local traditional markets where amongst other things we saw a pet shop with lots of birds and a garden shop...not quite like what we are used to, lots of tiny plants, like cactai and cut flowers of various types. Moon river is a very old village with traditional wooden buildings along cobblestone streets with interesting door steps 20cm high we needed to get used to; this is to deter the evil spririts from entering the premises.
On we went from Moon River to Wuzhen River Town, in the XiZha area, once the bustling home to a vibrant community, now however they have mostly moved to a new sector and the old town is now a tourist attraction with small 'accommodation houses' upstairs and tiny breakfast eateries on street level, all surrounded by water canals and a main lake. This area is famous for many cultural activities such as the fabric dying and blue and white wax printing, the musuem of 'bound feet' on display are all the various shoes worm by the women with bound feet to name a couple. We were taken over to the main island on a traditional boat pushed along by traditional bamboo pole; very quiet and peaceful and returned the same way.
We ventured through the checkpoints setup for the G20 just down the road and saw the industrial sectors where most of the manufacturing businesses have moved to; out of the city of Shanghai as it has beome increasingly expensive.
No time to stop, onto our dinner venue, a traditional 'lazy susan' on the table with so many different dishes to share we couldn't possible eat it all. Onto our next venture and what a delight it was, a nightime cruise up the Huangpu river between the old Shanghai and new Shanghai...the light show was better than Vegas! The weather was perfect, a still night with all the lights twinkling as we turned in 360deg and were surrounded with spectacles. Back to the hotel where we crashed after a full day with so much to take in.