19 Feb Weekend Shenanigans
Part of being an intern is not only to work and have fun in Shanghai, but to also explore the neighboring towns and do touristy things.
Last weekend saw us all travel to Wuxi for an overnight stay. That was amazing. The place had a much more cultural atmosphere compared to Shanghai but was by no means a small place. With a population of over 7million and a look of a city Wuxi made for an excellent weekend trip. The morning of the trip we all took cabs to the train station where we were going to board to the bullet train! It is one of high-speed rail services in China. With a top speed of 300kms/hr and spectacular views it is definitely worth it. Within a quick hour we had arrived in Wuxi where a driver had been organized for us to travel around in.
Our first stop was this small marketplace with Chinese empirical style architecture filled with small stalls including food, handicrafts, restaurants and even some fun activities for the kids. Along with some traditional food, clothing and entertainment the frivolous atmosphere amazed us. I felt like this was the heart of Chinese culture and it was amazing to explore the area and realize how different it is to western culture that I’m normally used to.
Following on from the marketplace we headed to some hot springs! This was fun. After a momentary confusion regarding how much clothing would be required to enter the hot springs (with a few taking the nude joke seriously) we dipped in 40C temperature water. It’s safe to say we boiled and turned into prunes within minutes though it was very relaxing. After dinner a few of us decided to head out to explore the nightlife in Wuxi. Though we weren’t expecting anything like what Shanghai clubs had to offer we did come across some small Chinese clubs. We found a small pub in the corner where we enjoyed some beverages and played dice (a lot of fun!). This was later followed by some amazing, though very spicy street food – beef noodles. One of the most enjoyable things about China is the ability to eat delicious street food at almost any time and its extremely cheap.
The next day we visited the Three Kingdoms. This place was almost a small amusement park. Again the design resembled old Chinese architecture but it was stunning and had been preserved extremely well. It had boat rides, a water slide, a playground for children (though most us went through them anyways) and shops with handicrafts and of course some local delicious food.
We also witnessed a re-enactment of a medieval battle with horses, jousting and even catapults. It was fascinating to learn about the rich history of this amazing country. The three kingdoms was also home to a old palace with some large beautiful ornaments and statues.
Its safe to say we had an amazing weekend getaway at Wuxi where we learnt traditional Chinese culture, experienced hot springs and local clubs along with visiting an old kingdom. It was extremely well organized by Absolute and definitely a memory I will take back home.