If I wouldn’t know I’m in China, I would never say it. Shanghai looks so much like an European city. It’s heart is the Bund, a waterfront promenade lined up with colonial-era buildings. It really makes me feel like home.
One of China’s cultural hubs, Shanghai has its own cuisine, opera and dialect. It is an art, science and culture trendsetter where are fusing Western culture stemming from its colonial past, international connections, and large expat community and Eastern culture.
In the Pudong district, across the Huangpu River, it raises its futuristic skyline, including 632m Shanghai Tower and the Oriental Pearl TV Tower, with its distinctive pink spheres. Sprawling Yu Garden has traditional pavilions, towers and ponds.
The French Concession, home of the city’s French population from 1849 to 1943, offers tree-lined streets, Art Deco buildings and hip boutiques, cafes and bars. Walking these streets it made me really feel like home.
Shanghai has an extensive public transport system, largely based on metros, buses and taxis and you can easily reach everywhere you want to go. Payment of all these public transportation tools can be made by using the Shanghai Public Transportation Card.
While not everyone speak English, the staff at the hotels, restaurants, tourist attractions all speak an acceptable level of English language. We don’t know to speak Mandarin and we had no problems going around. All street and metro signs are both in English and Mandarin as well so is not difficult.
A good time to visit Shanghai is from March to November. In November is a little bit chilly in the evening but has lovely sunny days. And since we live in Singapore where is always hot, we enjoyed a few days of chilly weather.