|View from the Bund in Shanghai|
I arrived in Shanghai at Pudong International Airport and took the maglev into the city before taking the subway to reach my hotel for the next few days. I stayed at the New Harbour Service Apartment centrally located near the Shanghai Museum.
|Tea house in the Old City (Shanghai Tower in the background)|
|View from the Shanghai Tower|
Over the course of the following days in Shanghai, I went to many of the city's typical tourist attractions. On my first full day in the city I visited the Bund (during the day), Jade Buddha Temple, Old City, Yuyuan Garden, Shanghai Museum, People's Square, French Concession, and Nanjing Road, among other places. The Old City was packed with people, and Nanjing Road and the Bund quite busy, but many of the other places were not that busy. The Shanghai Museum was quite underwhelming, and the French Concession really is really just a gentrified neighborhood.
For one afternoon, I made the trek across the Huangpu River to Pudong, where many of the city's tallest buildings are located. My first stop was the Shanghai Tower, the second tallest building in the world, which just opened its observation deck (the highest in the world) within the past couple of months. After a ride on the world's fastest elevators, I arrived at the observation deck (indoor) on floor 118 where the views stretched in every direction across the city. There was no wait to get on the elevator going up or down, and there were few people on the observation deck. I think it didn't seem well-known that the observation deck was open, as I couldn't find anything other than a post on TripAdvisor saying so. I again visited the Bund at night to experience the lights of the city.
After descending the Shanghai Tower, I walked over to the Shanghai Aquarium, which seemed like a pretty standard aquarium and didn't have anything that was really unique to it. From the aquarium, I walked next door to the Oriental Pearl Tower, home to indoor and outdoor observation decks, a revolving restaurant, and an indoor rollercoaster. There was about a half hour wait to board the first elevator to the observation deck, and just as long a wait to come back down. The indoor and outdoor observation decks were quite busy, and they provided a much lower and less-encompassing, yet still interesting view of Shanghai. I passed through the deserted floor that contained the rollercoaster and arcade room on the way down the tower.
|View from the Oriental Pearl Tower|
|Oriental Pearl Tower|
After much time spent wandering the city's streets and often eating just whatever I came across even if I really didn't know what it was, I went on a walking tour of the night markets with Untour. There were only four of us on this tour, plus our guide, and it included all of the food and drink during the tour. The walking tour started only a few blocks from my hotel, and lasted three or four hours as we stopped at a few places and sampled many different foods at each place. Our guide provided a great explanation of our foods and narratives about the city throughout.
|Food in a night market|
|First stop on the night market tour|
On my last day in Shanghai, I spent part of the day wandering around areas I had been to the past few days, but also went to Longhua Temple, a much less visited temple just outside of the city center (but conveniently located on a subway line). After the temple, it was back to the hotel to pick up my bags and make my way to the train station on the west side of the city for the one-hour high-speed train ride to Hangzhou.
Other posts about this trip to China:
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