So as mentioned earlier on the blog, I visited Shanghai last year. Although the trip was spoilt by the experience of being scammed, originally it actually started out as a nice trip… apart from also missing my train but I will stick to the positives!
After arriving in Shanghai I found the metro easy to navigate and easily got from the railway station to my hostel. The Shanghai metro is well developed with 14 lines and a total of 364 stations so is a great way to get around the city.
If you are wanting to stay out late at night though, check what time the last metro leaves so you don’t get stranded! You should also beware of people hanging around ticket machines as although they might seem helpful they may attempt to swipe your change from the ticket machines or even your wallet. Although I make Shanghai seem like too much trouble to be worth visiting if you are careful and remain cautious you will be fine and should have a great trip without incident.
Shortly after meeting my friends at our hostel we took the metro to the Bund and the French Concession. The French Concession was an area of Shanghai ceded to the French by the Chinese in the 19th century and so it is filled with a great mix of European and Chinese architecture.
You might be thinking why would you want to see European architecture in Shanghai, surely you would come to Shanghai to see the real China? Well personally I am not sure you can find this raw China in Shanghai, only a plastic replica is left in my opinion. Even the temples I saw in Shanghai I am sure are all replicas of something that once was. The French Concession however, IS real and it tells the story of an extremely chaotic and interesting part of Chinese history. Therefore in my opinion this and the Bund are far more interesting than brand new temples impersonating a Shanghai that no longer exists, rebuilt solely for the purpose of extracting money from tourists. If you want to see the raw China you might have a hard time finding it, but I think your best bet is definitely to go as far away from Tier 1 cities as possible!
After getting some photos at the Bund we then went to a rooftop bar which I would highly recommend, you can get some great views of the Concession and the Shanghai skyline from the Roosevelt Sky Bar.
Drinks are pretty pricey compared to the rest of China and cost around 100RMB from what I remember but you get free peanuts? Oh yeah you also have a really great view!
You can find this rooftop bar at No.27 Zhongshan East 1st Rd, Huangpu. Although there are also plenty of other great rooftop bars see http://www.destinasian.com/countries/asia/china/top-5-rooftop-bars-in-shanghai/
If there was one more thing I could recommend to visit in Shanghai, it would have to be the Yuyuan Garden. The Yuyuan Garden is an extensive Chinese garden filled with multiple sections each with their own unique landscapes. I think I must of spent around 2 hours wandering around this garden and it only cost 40RMB!
A word of warning however, when wandering around the area outside the garden make sure you don’t fall for the tea scam!
Feel free to comment below if you have any suggestions or anything to add 🙂