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This was how we came to the conclusion of visiting Shanghai & Suzhou.
My sister was getting married in Taiwan in early April, and we knew we would take two weeks off to attend her wedding and squeeze in a short side trip.
Bhutan was our top choice. By last summer, I already contacted the local travel agencies to inquire all the preliminary travel arrangements since no independent travelers can enter Bhutan on their own. However, we had to rule out Bhutan since it was not cost effective to visit Bhutan for such short stay.
Then, H mentioned Vietnam. Once again, we did not have enough time and I was not feeling Vietnam for reasons that I could not explain. I know H is fascinated with Vietnam and we would visit Vietnam one day soon, just not yet.
My work had kept me busy that I didn't have the luxury to spend hours to research and plan complicated trips. I wanted an easy trip with minimum flight time. The direct flight from Taipei city airport to Shanghai city airport was a mere 1.5 hours. Since I understand the language, I figure that once I book the plane tickets & hotel, I should be able to wing it once I get to Shanghai.
The familiarity would make the trip easier, on the other hand, it also made the trip less exciting for me, which is one of the reasons that I have never had a strong desire to visit China. However, Shanghai seemed to fit our needs for the purpose of this trip. And I guess it was only a matter of time for us to cross China off our travel map.
Trying to be an equal opportunist when it comes to exploring new countries, excited or not, we booked our trip to Shanghai.