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By SUEP
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October 17, 2005 – A journey to Shanghai, China in Asia


Old Shanghai

Decided to wander around the "old" parts of Shanghai today. Well, I guess the Bund would be considered old too, and I did that the other day... Anyway, headed off to this renovated part of the city in the French Concession, called Xintiandi ("new sky earth" in translation?). Basically, they took brick from yesteryear (maybe a century or two ago?), and used that to rebuild a cute little area, now full of coffeeshops, art galleries, and restaurants. Many foreigners seem to like this area, as I see lots and lots of them having coffee. But then again, most locals probably can't afford the inflated prices they have there. I did enjoy mindlessly walking around the narrow alleys though. You can feel the history emanating from those ancient bricks. They've probably seen more history taken place than many of their visitors. Only if they could carry a conversation.


Xintiandi


Next stop was at "Old Shanghai", otherwise known as Shanghai Lao Jie (Shanghai Old Street). This is one section of Shanghai that still retains a character that's not influenced by foreigners. Although the streets leading to the central area are now full of tourists and tourist shops, you can still sense the oldness of the buildings and what they've been through.


101805_shanghai_yuyuanstreet.jpg
Walking down Old Shanghai area, an antique furniture shop


The central area opens up to Chinese-architected shops amongst a man-made pond. Twelve years ago, when I was here, I don't remember it being this crowded! Groups of tourists were milling about this area. I guess if you're here to "see China" in Shanghai, this would be it. Besides Jinan Temple, most of Shanghai is foreign-influenced.


crowds miling about in the central area


a great place to try Shanghai's famous dumplings, "shao long bao", at the Nanxiang Steamed Buns restaurant


people watching old Qing manual movies


Sauntered into Yuyuan (note that you can use your student IDs here) for a bit. Yuyuan is also located in the central area. This garden is actually quite huge, and some of it is pretty reminiscient of the stone gardens in Suzhou.

inside Yuyuan



a stone garden section, a beautifully carved door, a gazebo hidden by bamboo




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