Shanghai is the largest city by population in the People’s Republic of China.
Shanghai, Hu for short, is a renowned international metropolis drawing more and more attention from all over the world. Situated on the estuary of Yangtze River, Shanghai serves as the most influential economic, financial, international trade, cultural, science and technology center in East China. Also it is a popular tourist destination, vistors can sense the pulsating development of modern China.
In addition to its modernization, Shanghai’s multicultural flair endows Shanghai with a unique glamour. Here, one finds the perfect blend of cultures, the modern and the traditional , and the western and the oriental. New skyscrapers and old Shikumen lanes together draw the skyline of Shanghai. Western customs and Chinese traditions intertwined, form Shanghai’s culture, making a visitor’s stay truly memorable.
1. The Bund, also called the Zhongshan Dong Yi Lu (East Zhongshan 1st Road), is a famous waterfront and regarded as the symbol of Shanghai for hundreds of years. It starts from the Baidu Bridge, which is at the connecting point of the Huangpu River and the Suzhou Creek, to the East Jinling Road and winds a 1500 meters (less than one mile) length. Walking along the Bund, which is at the west shore of the Huangpu River, the Oriental Pearl TV Tower can be seen on the opposite side and also the Jin Mao Tower. Being one of the Top Ten Shanghai Attractions, the Bund is a really beautiful and special place which is worth visiting. The newly-built Flood Control Bank takes the function of preventing the oversize flood; the square with the statue of Marshal Chen Yi is an open air podium which gives new views of the Shanghai Plaza Culture; the Cenotaph which stands on the man-made island is a monument of people’s heroes; the riverside greenbelt, the Electronic Waterfall Bell, and the Great Mural Carving are all representatives of the Bund. The most famous and attractive sight which is at the west side of the Bund are the 52 various buildings of different architectural styles including Gothic, Baroque, Romanesque, Classicism and the Renaissance.
2. The Oriental Pearl TV Tower is located in Pudong Park in Lujiazui, Shanghai. The tower, surrounded by the Yangpu Bridge in the northeast and the Nanpu Bridge in the southwest, creates a picture of ‘twin dragons playing with pearls’. This 468 meters high (1,536 feet) tower is the world’s third tallest TV and radio tower surpassed in height only by towers in Toronto, Canada and Moscow, Russia. However, even more alluring than its height is the tower’s unique architectural design that makes the Oriental Pearl TV Tower one of the most attractive places anywhere. The base of the tower is supported by three seven-meter wide slanting stanchions. Surrounding the eleven steel spheres that are ‘strung’ vertically through the center of the tower are three nine-meter wide columns. There are three large spheres including the top sphere, known as the space module. Then there are five smaller spheres and three decorative spheres on the tower base. The entire structure rests on rich green grassland and gives the appearance of pearls shining on a jade plate. Visitors travel up and down the tower in double-decker elevators that can hold up to fifty people at the rate of seven meters per second. The inner tower is a recreational palace, while the Shanghai Municipal History Museum is located in the tower’s pedestal. The large lower sphere has a futuristic space city and a fabulous sightseeing hall. From here, on a clear day a visitor can see all the way to the Yangtze River. The base of the tower is home to a science fantasy city. The five smaller spheres are a hotel that contains twenty-five elegant rooms and lounges. The pearl at the very top of the tower contains shops, restaurants, (including a rotating restaurant) and a sightseeing floor.
3. Yuyuan Garden is a famous classical garden located in Anren Jie, Shanghai. Yuyuan Garden occupies an area of 20,000 square meters (about five acres). However, the small size is not a representative of the attractions of the garden. The pavilions, halls, rockeries, ponds and cloisters all have unique characteristics. There are six main scenic areas in the garden: Sansui Hall, Wanhua Chamber, Dianchun Hall, Huijing Hall, Yuhua Hall and the Inner Garden. Each area features several scenic spots within its borders.
4. Located in the center of Shanghai in People’s Square, Shanghai Museum is a large museum of ancient Chinese art. The museum style and presentation surround visitors with artifacts demonstrating ancient wisdom and philosophy. The exterior design of the round dome and the square base symbolizes the ancient idea of a round heaven and a square land.
The museum is divided into eleven galleries and three exhibition halls. The eleven Galleries cover most of the major categories of Chinese art: Ancient Bronze, Ancient Ceramics, Paintings, Calligraphy, Ancient Sculpture, Ancient Jade, Coins, Ming and Qing Furniture, Seals, and Minority Nationalities.
5. In the western part of Shanghai, a very modern and flourishing city, there is a venerable and famous Buddhist temple, Jade Buddha Temple. In 1882, an old temple was built to keep two jade Buddha statues which had been brought from Burma by a monk named Huigen. The temple was destroyed during the revolution that overthrew the Qing Dynasty. Fortunately the jade Buddha statues were saved and a new temple was built on the present site in 1928. It was named the Jade Buddha Temple. The Jade Buddha Temple is a good place to go whether you are a Buddhist or not, the peaceful and transcendent atmosphere adds a kind of richness to our busy modern society.
6. China’s premier shopping street, 3.4-mile-long Nanjing Road, starts at the Bund in the east and ends in the west at the junction of Jingan Temple and Yan’an West Street. Today Nanjing Road is a must-see metropolitan destination attracting thousands of fashion-seeking shoppers from all over the world. Today over 600 businesses on Nanjing road offer countless famous brands, superior quality, and new fashions. KFC, McDonald’s, Pizza Hut, and other world-famous food vendors line both sides of the street. Upscale stores include Tiffany, Mont Blanc, and Dunhill. In addition, approximately a hundred traditional stores and specialty shops still provide choice silk goods, jade, embroidery, wool, and clocks.
7. Located in the center of Shanghai City south of Huaihai Zhong Lu, Shanghai Xin Tian Di has become an urban tourist attraction that holds the historical and cultural legacies of the city. Shanghai Xin Tian Di is a fashionable pedestrian street composed of Shikumen and modern architecture style.
Shanghai Xin Tian Di is unique because of its concept of construction. It retains the antique walls, tiles and exterior of the Shikumen housing of old Shanghai. On the other hand, its interior embodies a totally different world of international gallery, bars and cafes, boutiques or theme restaurants. When you walk into Xin Tian Di, you will get the taste both of Shanghai in the 1920′s and the sonic modern lifestyle of urbanites of the 21st century.
8. Located in a suburb of Shanghai city, Zhujiajiao is an ancient water town well-known throughout the country, with a history of more than 1700 years. Covering an area of 47 square kilometers, the little fan-shaped town glimmers like a bright pearl in the landscape of lakes and mountains.
Endowed with another elegant name – ‘Pearl Stream’ – the little town is the best-preserved among the four ancient towns in Shanghai. Unique old bridges across bubbling streams, small rivers shaded by willow trees, and houses with courtyards attached all transport people who have been living amidst the bustle and hustle of the modern big city to a brand-new world full of antiquity, leisure and tranquillity.
[article from: travelchinaguide.com]