Everyone of us has dreamt of packing up our bags and traveling around the world at some point in life. But not many of us ended up doing so. Life consumes the better part of that dream. 

But not for our today’s author. She is young, enthusiastic and vivacious. She loves to travel and has been globe trotting  and backpacking quite a bit in the past few years. Her enthusiasm for travel and curiosity to learn more about the different cultures, places and people in the world makes anyone determined to firm up a travel plan. This is one of her many travels, her favorite of the itineraries. 

Since I’ve come back from my travels the most common question I get is: “What was your favorite destination?” It’s always an internal battle to choose, but the answer is always the same: “China!” 

When I landed in Pudong airport in Shanghai, I had no idea what to expect from China. Would it be similar to India? A huge socioeconomic difference between the rich and the poor, with 5 star hotels and homeless alike…Or would it be more like Israel? Developed to a large extent and exploding with growth, yet paralleled with a strong sense of culture?

China was nothing like I had imagined. Of course, it encompassed elements of other countries and was partly like India, partly like Israel, and partly like so many other places. Yet, it was uniquely unpredictable too. I wasn’t expecting European architecture and high-end rooftop bars coupled with rows of food carts and street vendors. Shanghai and Xian were far more infrastructurally developed than anything I had seen in India, while the cultural grounding and abundant cheap labor surpassed the Zurichs and Londons of the world.

I deeply cherish every one of my experiences in China, no matter how crazy (coming up: getting food poisoning while watching my favorite DJ at a nightclub, missing my flight to Xian and getting stranded for a whole day, trying to find vegetarian food at the top of a mountain, nearly dying trying to scale said mountain, getting lost in the subway without knowing a word of Mandarin, and so much more) – so I hope that you enjoy the posts ahead!


First stop – a whirlwind of local cultures, people, food, and life. A few pictures through my lens:

A motorized three wheeler ride for public 
Magazine Stand 
Shopping The “Brands”

And a few picture of the street food –

Food Truck Is Popular 

Wait till you see the next picture. There are veggie options too. 
Who says you cannot find a Vegetarian option

The Bund

The Bund: a cultural cross-section of Shanghai running along the Huangpu River. Originally developed by European settlements, the Bund was an international hodgepodge of banks, consulates, and government buildings. Today, the Bund houses the major financial institutions of the world and serves as a global business hub. It’s architectural diversity is uniquely alluring, making it one of Shanghai’s most popular tourist destinations.

The Author Herself 

Reminds you of square in any European city ? 

This last shot is from the rooftop VUE bar, overlooking the Bund on a gloomy Shanghai day.

Lujiazui – Shanghai’s Financial District

The Shanghai public infrastructure explosion is world-famous. Lujiazui, Shanghai’s Financial District, is a testament to Chinese growth and development. The landmark buildings that exemplify the Shanghai skyline include the Shanghai Tower, the Jin Mao Building, the Oriental Pearl Tower, and the Shanghai World Financial Center. 
We took a high-speed elevator to the top of the skyscrapers for a beautiful view of the business district. The Shanghai Tower is the tallest building in China and the second tallest in the World, after the Burj Khalifa in Dubai. The high-speed elevator is modeled similarly after the one in Dubai, a strategic tool that has fueled tourism and business-related travel in Shanghai. 
Lujiazui by day and night: 

We hope you all enjoyed this post. This is Part -1 of the author’s travelogue to Shanghai. This shows the modern and contemporary Shanghai. More to come on the traditional part of Shanghai!

Pictures and Travel Story By : Prithvi Guruprasad. Prithvi is a recent U.C. Berkeley alum who lives and works as a professional consultant in the San Francisco Bay Area. She loves to travel, meet new people, and explore unfamiliar cultures and languages. With an innate appreciation for music, fashion, and art, Prithvi hopes to bring distant places close to home through her blog. She blogs at adaywithp.blogspot.com