Hangzhou and Shanghai 2016

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Visa free

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For the past 9 years I hadn’t visited China because obtaining a visa was complicated and expensive.
Now I used the new visa free transit regulations: 144 hours stay on transit in Shanghai, Jiangsu, and Zhejiang visa free.
Two stamps – you’re in. For free. You just have to show your connecting ticket.

Hangzhou

Located about 200 km south of Shanghai in Zhejiang province with a population of about 9,00,000. It has a long tradition as a recreation place due to its climate, its green tea and the famous West Lake.

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The special tea

Hangzhou is known for the Longjing tea  grown in the hills nearby. I liked hiking there even when it was very hot first and then raining cats and dogs. For dinner I was able to have fried shrimps with green tea leaves, delicious.

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Cuisine

So delicious and various! Not only the well known Green Tea Restaurant or Grandma’s Kitchen. Whether in Shanghai or in Hangzhou, it would be  worth to go there only for the food in the scenic restaurants. Thanks a lot for inviting me!

Shanghai

After 9 years reunion with Shanghai, the Seaport megacity with long tradition. The time of 24 hours was too short to see it really. This time a visit to a special world, the Jewish Museum. And in the night kind new friends for dinner and Shanghai’s lights.

Traffic

The pubic transport system is very comfortable. Easy, fast and cheaply we could travel. Most impressive the rail station in Hangzhou (I guess the biggest in Asia), the rapid train system and the Maglev, the magnetic levitation rail to Shanghai airport.

People

Many tourists in Hangzhou, most were Chinese.
It was a nice experience to be an attraction myself. Many children came to say hello, girls looked for me (ow long is the last time back, haha) and many people wanted us to take photos with me. I felt good as a stranger in China.
With the younger people it was easy to speak English, a lot has changed since my last visit 9 years ago.

Thanks

I met my good couchsurfing friend Eliza from Macau. She really  showed me a a very modern China that I had not expected. A very good infrastructure with high speed trains and a good mobile internet.
Many thanks to her many good friends who invited us, hosted us and had time for various informative talks.

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