Shanghai City Tour With Jennys Tours

This was my first trip to China, and with help from I had a couple of eventful days – and nights in Shanghai.

Peggy was my first city guide in Shanghai.

On my first day, The first stop with Peggy was the Yuyuan Garden Bazar….. Hundreds of years old…. and yes…. VERY touristy, but that’s apparently no recent thing – you see, the gardens here have attracted visitors for many years, and where there’s visitors, there’s always an entrepreneur ready to make a quick sale!

After the bazar, it was into the gardens themselves…. set up by a rich and powerful family of Shanghai hundreds of years ago…. they remain one of the oldest and most beautiful parts of the city, and a great area to get some peace away from the hustle and bustle of high-rise shanghai.

After our morning at Yuyuan garden, it was onto the Shanghai metro to our next stop – I have to say I was really grateful to Peggy and Jenny’s tours at this point as without them, navigating this vast network would have been rather tricky for a first timer!

We soon arrive at Xintiandi – part of the city’s french concession which was lovely. Another older part of the city with narrow alley, low european style houses and plenty of shops…. plus some great restaurants and cafes, perfect for our lunch stop. Naturally – the menu was all in chinese so I was glad of Peggy’s help when it came to ordering! Dumplings is a local dish, which I had to try – and I loved!

The next stop on our tour was only a short walk away and one of my most favourite stops on the tour. Mainly because it was so personal to Peggy and somewhere no guide-book would ever have told me about. A pet market. more specifically a cricket-market! Crickets in shanghai are kept as pets – Peggy had one as a child… to remind the residents of the countryside. They’re also bought by adults for sport – and maybe gambling although no one wanted to admit to that – and bought as fighting crickets to be pitched against other fighters in cricket fighting tournaments. If crickets aren’t your thing – there’s plenty of other animals looking for a home too!

Before long if was onto the metro and onto our last stop for the day…. and this one was another fantastic place that only someone with local knowledge would really know about! Underneath an apartment block in the centre of the city is a a small museum set-up in someone’s garage called the Chinese Propaganda Art Museum….. which paints a fascinating picture of Chinese history as the government wanted it to be seen – obviously though, you can read between the lines and take away from this your own interpretations.

Day 2 in Shanghai, and today, I was exploring alone…. but armed with plenty of tips from Peggy, I made my own way to Fuxing Gardens….. I was told that retirees of shanghai sometimes visit here to take part in local exercise classes, dance meetings and other hobby groups…. I however, didn’t expect it to be such a popular place among the local OAP’s and I was genuinely moved at how much enjoyment was being had by the visitors to the park, and at how welcoming everyone was to a lone tourist turning up with his camera. This was a lovely place to spend a morning and I felt very honoured to be allowed to spectate from the sidelines.

Later in the day, It was time to ride the world’s fastest elevator….. I wanted to visit the world’s second tallest building – The Shanghai Tower. This was something else I did alone as it was easy enough to find and navigate my way to the top – and the reward…. stunning views of the entire city, 126 floors up!

In the evening, I was met at my hotel by Celine, my next guide from who had an amazing night planned…. a trip on a boat along the bund to see Shanghai light up at night.

The boat trip was stunning… but certainly helped build up an appetite, so with Celine’s local knowledge we headed to local food streets near by and spent the rest of the evening tasting some brilliant local dishes. The perfect way to end my short trip to this fascinating city.

With thanks to Jenny’s Tours

Nikon D750
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Wonki – Sunset Paradise

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