Ah China. What better day to start my series on my travels there, than on the day the country is trending in the US for political shenanigans! πŸ™‚ I swear I didn’t plan that (or orchestrate it)!

If you follow me on the various social media platforms, you likely caught glimpses of my trip to China back in July. I went on business, but managed to squeeze in some fun time as well, and I’m excited to share several photos from my time there. I am personally fascinated with Asian cultures, and so I hope that some of what grabs my attention comes through over the next several weeks, whether or not you share my fascination. Also, this is another place where I got a good number of pictures that I really like, and have really had a hard time paring down the ones I want to share, so I hope you’ll humor me a bit on the number of photos I share.

My trip started in Shanghai. The city is home to some 24.1 million people, making it roughly 3 times the population of New York city (depending on how you cut it). It’s BIG. The city itself serves as China’s inward-facing financial hub (Hong Kong is the country’s outward-facing financial hub), and is home to lots of big business, also similar to New York City. In fact, there are probably lots of comparisons one could make between the Big Apple and Shanghai. That said, Shanghai is in every way, a big city. Huge city. Seriously… it’s massive.

Through the heart of the city runs the Huangpu River, along which you’ll find the city’s classic skyline (pictured above). Across the river from the financial district is a really nice boardwalk style area that’s a perfect spot to take in the view. There is one problem though… Shanghai is classically foggy. As impressive as the Oriental Pearl Tower (the tower to the left with the round balls on it) is, it pales in comparison to the rest of the skyline… when you can see it. Three of the city’s famous skyscrapers, the Shanghai Tower, the Shanghai World Financial Center, and the Jin Mao Tower, are all hidden from view in the photo above. If you can imagine it, the Shanghai Tower, which is currently China’s tallest building and the second tallest building in the world, is more than 500 feet taller than the Oriental Pearl. It’s jaw dropping! But alas… the fog wrapped them up and I was not able to get a picture of them. All the more reason to go back though, right?

–Dan Thompson

Shanghai