Shah Sisters Travel to China


Anjali Shah

The Shah sisters saw the Great Wall in China during their travels. The Great Wall is 13,170 miles long.

Gabby Leon

From learning about China in class to seeing it in person, junior Vaishali Shah and her sister, freshman Anjali Shah, spent two weeks this past summer in China.

“We saw the Great Wall of China. We learned about it in AP World and to actually see it was pretty cool,” V. Shah said.

I could take what I learned in a classroom and see it for real.

Along with seeing the Great Wall, the Shah family visited the Shanghai Tower in China, the second tallest building in the world at 2,073 feet.

“It was really foggy when we up the tower that day so we could not see anything. The fog made the city look mystical,” A. Shah said. “The view looked different every time. I want to see it again when it’s not foggy.”

Despite all the sightseeing, traveling to China was difficult for the Shah sisters since they did not speak Chinese.

“I thought it was interesting because no one spoke English. We had a guide so that helped,” A. Shah said. “When we were at the gate of the airport about to leave, there was a guy who kept speaking Chinese to us. Our guide had already left us, and my mom’s translator app was not working. We tried doing hand signals to tell him we did not speak Chinese but he could not understand.”

A. Shah’s favorite place she visited was Tibet.

“Tibet was in the Himalayas and I love mountains. We stayed there for five days,” A. Shah said. “My favorite memory was when we flew into Tibet and I could see all the tall mountains. There was a whole range of mountains that were covered with snow. The weather was cooler compared to the weather in St. Louis.”

For V. Shah, her favorite part of their trip to China was connecting the history she learned in school to the landmarks she saw in person.

“I had just taken AP World History. It was amazing to touch and walk on structures that these famous people in history textbooks once stood on,” V. Shah said.

The history there is a totally different timescale than ours is. Something in America might be considered old if it is 100 years old, but in China, everything is thousands and thousands of years old.

Their trip expanded the Shah sisters knowledge on the cultures in China.

“Everyone in Tibet was very religious and went to the different temples. They were peaceful and respectful and it was truly amazing to be in that environment,” V. Shah said. “It was inspiring to see the dedication they had to their traditions and I was amazed at how far people walked everyday to complete these traditions.”

The Shah sisters recommend traveling to new countries because of the different cultures they experienced.

“Tibet had a very different culture compared to St. Louis. It was a lot more fast paced than our society. Everything was on the go at all times of the day and there’s a lot of traffic,” V. Shah said. “Overall, traveling was a great way to learn new cultures and experience the world. It is something you cannot experience at home.”