China – Old and New Shanghai

Back in Shanghai, the city is a cosmopolitan mix of old and new, classical and modern. On the opposite side of the Huangpu River from the Bund, is the fairly new, ultra-modern glass skyscraper business district of Pudong. As soon as you step out of the metro station, you feel as if you are in a futuristic metropolis somewhere between The Jetsons and the city-planet Coruscant in Star Wars.

Pudong towering above

Pudong towering above

Pudong skyline

Pudong cityscape

The Oriental Pearl TV Tower dominates the skyline, day or night. The 88-story Jinmao Tower is China’s tallest building. But it seems more are going up to rival it.

Oriental Pearl TV Tower

Oriental Pearl TV Tower

From the riverfront, nice views of the Bund can be seen. Especially at sunset when the sun falls behind the building line and the lights come on to illuminate the Bund’s classical façade.

Admiring the sunset over the Bund

Admiring the sunset over the Bund

To remind you of Shanghai and China’s long history, the must-see Shanghai Museum is undoubtedly China’s best history museum. The long pages of history are here to see, pleasantly displayed and interesting enough to keep you occupied for hours. Artifacts and information range across all dynasties with exquisite collections of ancient liquid vessels, bowls, ceramics, jade, sculptures, paintings, jewellery, seals, furniture and ethnic costumes. There is also a large coin collection with literally hundreds of Chinese and old foreign coins and banknotes to peruse.

Shanghai Museum

Shanghai Museum

Womanly figures

Womanly figures

Figurines and exquisite detailing

Figurines and exquisite detailing

Some cool old items in here

Some cool old items in here

Being tourists, we got sucked into heading out to one of Shanghai’s premier sights; Yuyuan Gardens in Old Town. Crowded with tourists, the main bazaar is a bunch of restaurants, souvenier and antique shops. The Yuyuan Gardens itself is a nice layout of pavilions, carp-filled ponds and stone.

Yuyuan Gardens

Yuyuan Gardens

Yuyuan Gardens Pond

Yuyuan Gardens Pond

Gate into the Main Bazaar

Gate into the Main Bazaar

Main Bazaar of Yuyuan Gardens

Main Bazaar of Yuyuan Gardens

Around the grounds of Yuyuan Gardens

Around the grounds of Yuyuan Gardens

Locals still live around here

Locals still live around here

For something slightly different, we went for a stroll in the French Concession. It is a residential and retail district with atmospheric tree-lined streets and preserved classical French building facades from a time long gone when Shanghai was filled with European and other foreigners due to its important trade port. The French are long gone, but wandering the streets and ducking down the side alleys nearly makes you think you could possibly be in Paris…perhaps.

French Concession boutique facades

French Concession boutique facades

French Concession shopping

French Concession shopping

Our last day in Shanghai and end of the first journey across China wouldn’t be complete without one final dance down the Bund at night.

Bund streetscape by night

Bund streetscape by night

Bund buildings by night

Bund buildings by night

The Bund...postcard style

The Bund…postcard style

Visited 2nd, 5th and 6th January 2014.

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About starksepicadventure

We are Andrew and Lakshi Starks, young married couple from Melbourne, Australia. We are travelling around the world on our Starks Epic Adventure!
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