It was a sunny day on September 17, 2017.We all met at the airport. I could see familiar faces everywhere as I could easily spot everyone because of their red hats. I went ahead and got myself a red hat too.
After we got on the plane, we flew over to Lhasa. The view from the airplane window was breathtaking. We could see the vast plateaus and lakes right beneath us. We got off in Lhasa and went through the immigration process. After a long flight, we reached Chengdu.
Chengdu was beautiful. The city air felt clean and the city lights were very captivating. We went to the Hang Kong Hotel. After spending a hilarious time in the hotel lobby, we got to our rooms. We had a nice glass protected porch from where we could see the busy streets of Chengdu. We ended the night with a delicious burger king dinner.
On the next day, we flew for Beijing.There we met our guide, Mei. She was a fair lady with good English. Her catch phrase was ‘Boys, Girls, ah, Chalo Chalo!!’. Actually, by ‘Chalo Chalo’ she meant,’let’s go’. When we first got in Beijing city, it was amazing. The fast running cars, the clean broad roads, the neatly lined bikes and the tall buildings made the city new and fascinating. Soon, we reached the Beijing City Inn Hotel.
Out first destination in Beijing was the Beijing Zoo. The anticipation was huge because it was the first time seeing Pandas.They were really adorable. Next destination was the Temple of Heaven. It was a place with great ambiance. We entered into a tree filled area. An array of tall trees grew side by side to the broad path leading to our place of visit. We went through a wooden hallway. The delicate artwork on the ceilings and the railings were mesmerizing. The detailed painting with the mix of a beautiful blue and green and the skilled wooden carvings made the place a microcosm of relaxation and art. The blue symbolized peace, harmony, and freshness.
Our last stop for the day was the Forbidden City. So, firstly we walked through the amazing streets where we could see an ancient military fort and a beautiful church. Finally, we reached the Tiananmen Square. The square contains the Monument to the People’s Heroes, the Great Hall of the People, the National Museum of China, and the Mausoleum of Mao Zedong. We observed the vast and diverse fashion, culture and faces of people. It felt absolutely amazing. As I sat there, drinking some water, I could how big the world was. At that moment, I had a flash of realization of how little beauty I had seen. Every person walking on the square was walking at their own pace, with their own thoughts, and with their own people.
Finally, we reached the Forbidden City. We went into the enormous establishment through the Tiananmen gate holding a picture of Mao Zedong. We enjoyed the calm evening walk. The pagoda styled palace with golden roofs was very pretty. The long and elegant paths to the palace made the view very breathtaking. However, due to insufficient time, we had to end our visit.
The next day in Beijing started with our visit to the jade factory called Dragon Land Superior Jade gallery. We could see the workshop where the jade items were made. We could see how the crafters made the beautiful jade items with utmost care. We finally entered the shop. We were allowed a 30 percent discount so it wasn’t as expensive as we thought. A light jade ring caught my eye and I bought it. The display of the items over there was very eye-catching. The elegant display made the jade look even more attractive.
We set out to the train station early in the morning to board a bullet train to Shanghai. I saw the slow city scenery change into a blurry yet watch worthy mix of green at first. Soon, I saw the hills and high cliffs. We passed the bright flower garden with an array of beautiful flowers, a dark tunnel and finally, we reached the city. As the city began revealing itself, we could see higher buildings and more cars.
Honhqiao Railway Station is said to be the largest railway station but still, we managed to find our local guide for Shanghai, Mr.Raymond. Raymond then took us to an Indian Restaurant for Lunch. He also gave brief information about Shanghai city on the way. After lunch, we went for shopping in a local mall. The local mall underground was huge. It covered a large area and there was one place, D-12, where everyone decided to meet up after the shopping.
The next day started by visiting the Shanghai museum. The Shanghai Museum is a museum of ancient Chinese art, situated on the People Square in the Huangpu District of Shanghai, China. Rebuilt at its current location in 1996, it is considered one of China’s first world-class modern museums. There were various arts, scripts, pottery, coins etc. of ancient China. It was a quite big museum so we weren’t able to visit all the places.
Next, we went to the Shanghai Urban Planning Center: The Shanghai Urban Planning Exhibition Center is an Exhibition Center and Museum on People’s Square in Shanghai, China. Then, we went to the Silk Museum. It was an educational tour of the entire process from growing and feeding the silkworms to collecting the silk threads and the factory production of silk textiles. Quality silk bedding and products could be purchased there.
Cruise dinner was scheduled for the evening. The night view of the river and the city was amazing. The Chinese food was quite good. We enjoyed the calms, duck and the other items that were very tasty. We went out to the railing to watch the view. The tall buildings were very radiating with a different color of lights. We could see the Shanghai Tower, the second tallest building in the world.
On the bus ride back to the hotel, the city was living. I could see the room with lights on late at night. I could imagine someone working hard all night in the office room. I could almost hear the busy telephone rings and typing of the keyboards. It was an intriguing experience. It hit me that so many people were working hard to live their life. It made me realize how little my world had been. It encouraged me to explore more.
Finally, on the last day, it was the most anticipated place of visit in this tour, the Shanghai Disneyland Park. It is a theme park located in Pudong that is a part of the Shanghai Disney Resort. We went around the Disneyland in different groups. I personally enjoyed the Tomorrowland.The Tron ride was amazing and the speedy ride made me scream out my lungs. We got to see the concept cars of Chevrolet as well. We rode the Pirates of the Caribbean ride. The visuals were 3D and it really felt like you were under the sea. The characters greeted us and entertained us.Pranj
That night, we could see the beauty of China, the hardworking country that never sleeps. The bustling street filled with cars, the footsteps of a thousand people working every day, the tall buildings with millions of people, the enormous river reflecting the beautiful moonlight and a warm night that remains in our heart as beautiful memories.
By: Pranjali Sunuwar
The writer is a tenth-grade student at Pathshala Nepal Foundation