Shanghai Travel Guide


Shanghai Museum
Of the Shanghai Museum's 120,000 works of art, one-third have never before been shown. While guiding you through the craft of millennia, the museum simultaneously draws you through the pages of Chinese history. Expect to spend half, if not a whole day here - it's one of the city's highlights.

The Bund
Formerly a towpath, the Bund gets its name from the Anglo-Indian term for the embankments used to prevent flooding. To the Europeans, the Bund was Shanghai's Wall Street, a place of feverish trading and an unabashed playground for Western business sophisticates. It remains the city's most impressive mile and is an eloquent reminder that Shanghai is a very foreign invention.

Still a grand strip of hotels, shopping streets and nightclubs, the Bund remains an intrinsic part of Shanghai's character. Constant throngs of Chinese and foreign tourists pad past the porticos of the Bund's grand edifices while the buildings themselves loom serenely, a vagabond assortment of neoclassical 1930s downtown New York styles, with a touch of monumental antiquity thrown in for good measure. The building identified by a crowning dome is the former Hongkong and Shanghai Banking Corporation (HSBC) building, completed in 1923 with much pomp and ceremony. For many years it has housed the Shanghai People's Municipal Government. The HSBC has long been negotiating to get it back. Other Bund fixtures are being sold off, and will no doubt be dusted off and cleaned up.

Shanghai Great World
Shanghai Great World, a yellow pinnacled building, stands at the city's central crossroad of Yanan Road and Xizang Road. It has had a history of 81 years and is well known both at Shanghai and abroad. With a long history, Great World enjoys its characteristic architectural style and is noted for its inner artistic design. The 100 meters long overpass connecting the main building with the attached building circles and takes a bird's eye view of the central roofless ring. Therefore Great World has been registered special building as cultural relics by the Shanghai Municipality.

People's Square
The People's Square is located in downtown Shanghai. Before liberation, it was a racecourse. Now, you will find here the Municipal City Hall, Shanghai Museum, Shanghai Grand Theater, No. l subway People's Square stop, the underground shopping street, the underground transformer house, the largest in Asia, an underground parking ground, the largest in Shanghai, able to accommodate 600 cars. On both sides of the 600-m long and 32-m wide People's Avenue are 5.5-m wide green belts and 6.5 -m wide passages for non-motorized vehicles. In the middle of the square is a 320-sq.m. round fountain and a landscaped lawn of 80,000 sq.m. In the western part of the square are kept 1,000 pigeons. On holidays and at weekends the square is crowded with people, enjoying the peaceful and pleasant scene on the square.

Shanghai International Convention Center
Shanghai International Convention Center is located in the southwest of the Oriental Pearl TV Tower in Pudong. It covers an area of 45,000-sq.m. with a landscaped square of 30,000-sq.m. Its total floor space is 110,000-sq.m. It consists of several modernized halls: a 42,000-sq.m. multi-functional hall, able to accommodate 3,000 diners for banquet and 4,000 attendants for meetings, and serve as an exhibition hall, a 25,000-sq.m. exhibition hall, a 11,000-sq.m. underground exhibition hall, an 800 seat-capacity meeting room, two 200 seating capacity meeting rooms, 20 meeting rooms of different sizes, accommodating 50 or 100 people. There are 259 guest rooms, including presidential suites, executive suites, standard rooms, Chinese and Western restaurants, a coffee room, a nightclub, a show room, a gym, a swimming pool, a bowling room, a billiard room, a sauna bath and a shopping arcade. The underground parking lot can accommodate 600 cars. Shanghai International Convention Center was opened for business in August 1999. The '99 Fortune Global Forum was held here.

The former French Concession, is the area around Huaihai Lu and the Jinjiang Hotel, fast becoming the place to explore - especially for foodies. Huaihai Lu is all about shopping. Huge department stores blot out the sun along a road colourfully lined with flower boxes. The area around the hotel is littered with cafes, boutiques and the odd antique shop. Head down the side streets off Yan'an Lu for the tatty, down-at-heel fin de siècle architecture that is so evocative of yesteryear. Nearby, the Yuyuan Gardens & Bazaar area of the Old Town offers some delicious lunchtime snacks and welcome greenery. The Pan family, rich Ming Dynasty officials, founded the gardens, which took 18 years (from 1559 to 1577) to be nurtured into existence, only to be decimated during the Opium War in 1842. Today they've been restored and attract hordes of Chinese tourists. The Mid-Lake Pavilion Teahouse, one of China's most famous Teahouses, is another attraction in the bazaar area.

Nanjing Lu
Nanjing Donglu (Nanjing Road East) has long been China's golden mile. Once supreme, it's looking a bit frayed and has slipped a few notches to the emerging luxury option of Huaihai Lu, but laden shoppers still traipse past its cathedrals of commerce. A late 1990s renovation project pedestrianised the street from Xizang Lu to Henan Lu; tired shoppers can catch the tourist train that runs along its length. Even back in the dull Communist era, Nanjing Donglu had a distinctly 'shop till you drop' feel about it. Nowadays, Esprit, Benetton and McDonald's have shouldered Marx and Mao into the draughty halls of little-visited museums - which was where the capitalist state was meant to end up.

Shanghai Longhua Tourist City
Located in the southern part of Shanghai, the tourist city is built around Longhua Temple and together with Longhua Martyrs' Cemetery, it occupies an area of 31.17 hectares. The planned area for the tourist city is 8.47 hectares. The first phase of the project with an area of 4.22 hectares will be completed and opened to the public at the end of 1999. The buildings in the tourist city will be reproduction of the architecture of folk dwellings south of the Changjiang River, with black tiles and whitewashed walls, covered corridors around the Longhua Pagoda, little alleyways and winding paths, shops in the city and streets through the shops.
The tourist city, complete with the functions of sightseeing, shopping, catering, and amusement,
facilities supplying tourist souvenirs, arts and crafts, folk collections, minority nationality ornaments, vegetarian food and tonic food, native and special products, different styles of Chinese food, special flavored snacks, an ideal place for rest and recreation, and cultural exhibition will soon be completed. Once completed, the tourist city will be a typical tourist attraction featured by Chinese Buddhist culture and folk custom south of the Changjiang River.

Yangpu and Nanpu Bridges
The Yangpu and Nanpu bridges are, at 7,658 and 8,346 metres respectively, among the longest bridges of the world. Both are of the double cable-stayed suspension type with a long span. Open 8:30-17:00.

Huangpu River Cruise
The two bridges are the world's fourth longest and largest cable-stayed suspension bridges. Both of them have sidewalks and elevators for visitors. The opening hours are from 8.30 a.m. to 6.30 p.m. for Yangpu Bridge and 8.30 a.m. to 10.00 p.m. (June to September), 8.30 a.m. to 6.30 p.m. (October to May) for Nanpu Bridge.

Huzhou Pagoda
Huzhou Pagoda, built in 1079 AD, is the leaning tower of China, with an inclination now exceeding the tower at Pisa by 1.5 degrees - at last count. The 19m (62ft) tower started tilting about 200 years ago. It's on Tianmashan in Songjiang County, 20km (12mi) southwest of Shanghai. Bus No 113 from Shanghai train station terminates there.

Yunnan Road Night Market
A good stroll west of the Bund on Nanjing Lu, the night market is a nightly mini-festival of food at very reasonable prices. If you're feeling queasy, stay away from Nanjing Lu. It's pretty much Shanghai's prime eating strip - and just about anything gets eaten here.

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