Tag Archive: skyline

When we got back I went to the ‘revolutionary’ museum alone—it was really the Ho Chi Minh City Museum and our map from G Adventures was wrong. I walked in the wrong room first (side door as there was no sign to tell me otherwise) so I saw the culture 19th-20th century.

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Then I walked to the start and saw the nature, then the history of foundation and development which had a ton of maps (which I love) then commercial part which was a lot of info about imports and exports then industry which seemed to have a lot of weapons. Then I got back to the 19th-20th but into another room with instruments and wine casks and masks.

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The next floor had wedding photos going on (kind of strange but they did get a good view of the city) and the big rooms had revolutionary struggles 1930-1975 which included an award for burning down a building, a horn to call people to protest, a saw that was used to cut trees to block the French from going into cities. A statue was made for a boy (under 18) who went to jail but gave up no information. Many protests happened during 1930-1931, more than any other time. The last bit was about the Ho Chi Minh Campaign which liberated Saigon and reunified the country.

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There were two balconies but only the back had a nice view outside were some tanks plants and helicopters.



After visiting the Batu Caves we went to KLCC (KL City Center) which is where the Petronas Towers are. They were built in 1998, and are 452 meters tall. The sky bridge (the highest you can go up)is about halfway up between the 41st and 42nd floors. The subway is above ground at points and you can see grafitti along the river. It costs 1.60 ringgits to get from KL Sentral to KLCC.

It’s hard to get pictures of all of the Petronas Towers with someone in them because they are so big and there are tons of people in the area. From the park side we were able to get more, but not the bottom of the towers as there is a mall there on the park exit side. The park is 100 acres! It has an area for kids and a tropical garden area.

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The malls there have everything! Topshop–I was told they were only in Asia in HK–Marks & Spenser with some food and Aunt Annies Pretzals!

We came back to this area at night to go to Skybar on the 33rd floor of Traders Hotel. If you want to reserve a window seat you need to call in advance, but keep in mind you should be a nice person then and let people keep squeezing in to take pictures. We weren’t able to make reservations, but luckely the people near us by the window were super nice and even told us that the top window was open! No marks on your photo from the lights inside. Drinks are expensive but you pay for the view, so we got a bucket of 6 Tigers for 24 ringgits each (the night before in Chinatown we got 3 Caslings for 16 ringgits each) around 6:45, stayed for sunset around 7:30 and left for dinner. They don’t ever let you have a tab at the bar, so be ready to pay when your drink(s) come(s).

KL 624I feel like the building in the middle gets no love, but it highlights the towers!

Shanghai in 8 hours

On my way to India, I had a layover from 12:55pm to 8:30pm–taking the time to get out of the airport and to where my friend wanted to meet plus the time to get back to the airport and the 2 hours to check in….it was really from 2:50pm to 6:30pm, and 3 hours and 40 minutes in Shanghai.

You CAN leave the airport in Shanghai if you are from certain countries if you have a layover that is less than 48/72 hours–if it’s longer I’d imagine you went there on purpose…really after 12 I think you’re there on purpose but on my way back it was 22 hours to make the flights super cheap. You can’t be coming from Hong Kong, stay in Shanghai for 48 hours and then go back to Hong Kong, have to go somewhere else so its really a layover and not a short trip. I don’t understand why the government doesn’t promote this more, since it really is just a great way for the country to make some tourism money. I’m not sure why else it exists.

Anyway, after you leave the airport, you can get on the metro easily and go anywhere! Both airports are on the green line and I went to Jing’an Temple to meet my friend (another English teacher) as she lives near there.  This took about an hour. At the airport stop (at least at mine, Pudong International) there are some weird decorations to let you know you’re in China. They were all in bad lighting, so my flash always popped up.

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Once getting off I could see that China was still all decked out for the Lunar New Year

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We went to lunch at Din Tai Fung which is famous from dumplings so we got the Mushroom ones and the Vegetable ones. My friend is a meat eater and said she liked the Mushroom ones because they were more ‘meat like’. We also got the most popular side dish which was sauteed greens in garlic. So good. There is a reason it’s the most popular. Service was a bit odd as we got everything separate, but it was busy. They have soy sauce and vinegar on the table for you to mix, and deliver very pretty ginger for you to use in your mix as well. You can watch the dumplings being made, but I’m not sure how anyone would know which are theirs.

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After that we walked though new Shanghai which is filled with sky scrapers. There was also a knock off market. I was quite surprised at how people just yelled what they were selling at you. We didn’t buy anything, but we went back on my return layover.

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We ended up at Peoples Square where parents advertise their unmarried ‘old’ children for wed. I put old in quotes because by American/Western standards they are not old, only about 25. The signs will list their age, height, likes and dislikes and other parents will make notes of things to show their children. I don’t think I saw any of the kids actually there. There is a separate area for people who are willing to accept non-Chinese nationalities.

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There is also an amusement park with some really unsafe looking rides…

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And of course Cherry Blossoms!

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Next we decided to walk to the waterfront to see the skyline. While we were walking it started to rain, but hardly enough to need an umbrella, but of course everyone pulled them out. I have a horrible fear of getting hit in the ey by an umbrella.

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When we got to the waterfront I remembered being there when I was 16 and we did a boat cruise. I was hoping my mom could go though those old pictures (not on my computer) and find one of me in Shanghai but she couldn’t. I guess I didn’t take many pictures of myself on the trip and relied on others, but if we had shared them, they would have sent them and we would have saved them, right?

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Realistically, the photos below was the only reminder that I was in fact, in China which is a ‘communist’ country.

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Next was the subway back to the airport, where my friend told me that I had, realistically, seen all of new Shanghai in one day–less than that!

Tokyo Metropolitan Government Building

The Tokyo Metropolitan Government Building is in Shinjuku and is a free way to see the Tokyo skyline. They also have maps of every neighborhood on the bottom floor, which is great to have. This would be a great first stop, but I didn’t know that at the time. It opens at 9:30.

Tokyo 1 708 Tokyo 1 712 Tokyo 1 717 Tokyo 1 718 Tokyo 1 722 Tokyo 1 732The view of the South is way better–maybe because I went there first but there is also a lot more room to sit and at the North side 1/4 of the view is reserved for people going to the Italian restaurant.