Commonly named “Paris of the East”, Shanghai is a buzzing metropolis located on the Pacific coast of China, and conveniently 40 minutes by fast train from where I am studying. This week was Qing Ming Festival, the Chinese equivalent of a bank holiday in which everyone traditionally takes time off to celebrate their ancestors by sweeping their tombs followed by a traditional meal, however due to my significant lack of Chinese ancestors I decided this was the perfect time to take a city break.
Whilst Shanghai is famous for it’s skyline, the French Concession (divided into two sections, East and West) is by far the most beautiful area of the city. Tree lined streets are full of small cafes and boutique shops, so reminiscent of Europe that if you squinted hard enough you could be in France!
Taikang Road Art Centre
Vis-A-Vis, French Concession
Huifeng Tea Shop
However as a city Shanghai is at best at night, during which the warm lights and starry backdrop mask all the imperfections a developing city inevitably has. I was lucky enough to visit Cloud 9 bar on the 87th floor of the Hyatt Hotel and Bar Rouge located on the Bund. [Sadly due to the foggy weather and pollution the photos are a little hazy!]
During our last day we stuck to touristy Shngahi with a walk around People’s square and Yuyuan gardens and bazaar. However due to the howling winds and cold temperatures we quickly took refuge in the Jade Buddha Temple just around the corner for our apartment, and I have realised that “temple touristing” is fast becoming my favorite globetrotter-with-a-camera activity.