As in Montreal, I’m now totally into bicycle tours to see a city. First, it’s so fast for getting around. You see everything around you up close (including pink scooters). You’ll get off the main roads, travel the side alleys and still manage to work off all the extra calories you’ve taken in. And, with jut two full days in the city, and limited touring time, Elizabeth and I wanted to make the most of it.
Everyone bikes in Shanghai. It’s eyeopening.
I’ve never seen so many bicycles on the road nor amenities for cyclists. Real parking. Real biking lines. Roadside bicycle repairs. And no helmets to mess up your hair :)
Babies and children on the backs of bikes. Or, inbetween their parents legs on the scooter. People rode side saddle on the backs of bikes and scooters.
In Shanghai, we used China Cycle Tours for a 3:00 pm. to 10:00 pm night tour. This gave me enough time to go fabric shopping at the cloth market in the morning and let the humidity and heat cool off. Plus, Shanghai is beautiful at night.
We went through Wen Mia, the only Confucian temple in Shanghai; Xintandi which is a former Jewish settlement and now eight acre shopping center (think small streets of Prague); the Dong Tai Road antique market, and the Bund.
The Bund makes NYC’s skyline look like a nightlight.
It’s remarkable simply the way a city of 20 million moves people around the area. There are totally separate bike lines all over the city. There is bicycle parking everywhere. And, I mean everywhere you look. Scooters, cars, bikes and pedestrians truly share the road. Absolutely common form of transportation and moving cargo.
We wanted to do the same in Beijing, but our flight was delayed and the traffic was awful and through idiocy of mine, we were delivered to the wrong hotel. Well, not my total idiocy. We were at Holiday Inn Express Temple of Heaven. But, I had the information for Holiday Inn Temple of Heaven. Apparently, two different places. So, no bike tour in Beijing.
The best part though? My new bicycle parka!
I became obsessed with getting one of these after seeing them in a photo there. It covers both you and the bike and has holes and cuffs to keep our hands dry over the handle bars. It has little clips to attach to the bike to prevent it from riding / blowing up in your face. I will obviously be making a pattern of this very very soon. I actually kind of want it to rain so I can wear it out :).