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CruiseDirection - Magazine May 2019

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Shanghai, located by the Huang Pu River is a coastal city on the Yangtze River Delta in the central-eastern region of China. It is the nation’s commercial capital and one of the busiest ports in the world. With approximately 20 million people in its metropolitan area, Shanghai is one of the most populous industrial areas in the world.  

Weather in Shanghai is marked by harsh cold winters beginning in January and lasting through March. Moisture in the air often makes it feel colder than the actual temperatures. Summer runs April to September or October and is marked by heat and high humidity. Rain can occur year round but July is traditionally the wettest month. The nicest time to visit is undoubtedly autumn. Beginning in September or October and lasting into November, this is the driest period and is also the most temperate.

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Cruise Companies that sail to Shanghai

Why visit Shanghai ?

Shanghai location iamge - CruiseDirection

A coastal city on the Yangtze River Delta

The nation’s commercial capital and one of the busiest ports in the world

Shanghai’s most famous attraction is the Bund. Formerly a significant business district it is lined with exquisite buildings that exemplify various styles of architectural design including Art-Deco, Gothic, Renaissance, Romanesque, and Neoclassical. The contrast of styles and various foreign influences is quite impressive.  

Another popular and large attraction is the Shanghai Museum. Featuring over 120,000 works of art, visitors should allot at least one half day to fully enjoy all the museum has to offer. There are galleries devoted to calligraphy, jade, bronze, ceramics and sculptures. Additionally, there are areas with paintings, ancient coins, furniture dating to the Ming and Qing dynasties and other historical artefacts. The item descriptions are available in both Chinese and English (which is a nice plus) and the audio tours are both worthwhile and recommended.  

Yu Yuan Garden is located in the centre of Shanghai’s old city, near the Bund. Originally constructed during the Ming Dynasty in the 16th century, the garden was later destroyed in 1842 during the first opium war. It has since been rebuilt in classic Ming Dynasty style. Covering approximately five hectares, there are over 40 different attractions within the inner and outer gardens including various rock and tree gardens, fish ponds, and dragon-lined walls and doorways. Other exhibits include clay sculpture and paintings from famous artists, brick carvings, and calligraphy. Of special interest in the garden is the “Exquisite Jade Rock,” a five-ton boulder beautifully shaped with many holes caused by water erosion over time. Aside from its natural beauty the rock performs some interesting tricks, if a joss stick is burned at the base of the rock, smoke will rise and emit evenly from each of its holes. Likewise, if water is poured over the top of the rock it will act as a fountain spouting water evenly from each of its holes. These feats are said to be extraordinary to behold.  

One of Shanghai’s most popular restaurants is “M on the Bund.” Conde Nast magazine reportedly named them “one of the best 100 restaurants in the world.” They have a large terrace that offers a breathtaking view of the Bund, and their food is prepared with strong European and Middle Eastern influences. For dessert the Pavlova is a recommended speciality.  

Being a large cosmopolitan city, shopping is plentiful in Shanghai. The shopping malls on Huaihai road and Nanjing road are both famous for their designer fashions or if boutiques are more your style, check the shops on Changle road.  

For fine silk, the best place to shop is “the Shanghai Silk Building” with several locations throughout the city or for fine porcelain; the Shanghai Museum is the place you seek. For souvenirs or mementos to remember your trip, a jaunt to the Yuyuan Bazaar is highly recommended. The vendors there offer a wide variety of genuine Chinese art and crafts. Shanghai is a burgeoning metropolis rich with Chinese culture and history. Any holiday trip to Shanghai is sure to be exciting and memorable.

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