Money Exchange Shops in Airport
like in downtown, they charge a 30 RMB commision per transaction so when going out of China, better to change your Renminbi at the Hotels than here at the airport. Changing Money in Shanghai is simple but a tip, changing foreign currency in hotels are better than changing in money shops in downtown why? exchange rate of $1 - 6.75 RMB in hotels but they charge NO commission fees! while in moneyshops in beijing area the exchange rate is $1 - 6.86 RMB (which is higher) but they charge a 30 RMB commision per TRANSACTION so it is better to change foreign currency in hotels since they have no commision charge!
This street in Shanghai is famous by its bars, discos and active nightlife.
Some nice people gather there during the evening, where some good restaurants and bars are located.
Nice places, worth a stop in one of its restaurants or bars... Be yourself.
Chinese tea in Shanghai's old town
I stopped off at the Old Shanghai Tea House one afternoon during a visit to Shanghai in May 2008.
This traditional tea house is located on Fangbang Zhong Road (also known as Old Street) in Shanghai’s old town. While the external appearance and the interior décor certainly give it an historic and authentic feel, the clientele and the prices left me in no doubt that this place is largely tourist oriented.
Don’t get me wrong, I enjoyed my visit there and I would recommend others to stop by for a pot of tea and some traditional Shanghai snacks, but don’t expect to be sat amongst locals going about their everyday tea drinking. Old Shanghai Tea House (like much of Old Street) has become something of a parody of Shanghai’s real old town; a somewhat sanitised, Disneyesque version.
Unsurprisingly, there are dozens of teas to choose from on the menu. For example, you’ll find Chinese green and red teas, jasmine tea, lemon tea, white tea and camomile tea. But that is just the tip of the ice berg, for there are dozens of variations of each of these teas each with its own exotic sounding name. Some of the teas cost a rather exorbitant 180 Yuan (15 GBP) per pot. As well as teas, there are coffees, soft drinks and bottled beers to choose from.
A limited food menu offering various dumplings and noodles and other local snacks is also available.
The sitting area of the tea house is located upstairs. I took a table next to one of the open windows and enjoyed the views out over bustling Old Street below. The interior décor is 1930s style, with an old piano, an old typewriter, record players, fans and historic posters and vinyl records on the walls, alongside maps from the period. Soft, gentle Chinese music played in the background throughout my stay.
I opted for:
Guangyin Green Tea - Cost: 65 Yuan / 6 GBP per pot
When the waitress brought over my pot of tea she performed a rather elaborate show of pouring my first cup. She started by washing the cups (there were two of them: a small thimble shaped one and a slightly bigger dish shaped one) with hot water from the kettle.
She then went through a long winded procedure of pouring some of the green tea leaves into a pot, adding water and draining into a larger cup. From this larger cup, she poured the tea into the thimble shaped cup, which she then tipped upside down into the dish shaped cup and began the procedure all over again. I was eventually presented with a cup of green tea (in the dish shaped cup) which was ready to drink. The waitress left me a kettle and I refilled the pot several times, drinking maybe 30 small cups worth of tea over the next hour or so. The cup was tiny, and at 65 Yuan a pot I was determined to get my money’s worth!
Shanghai Steamed Bread - Cost: 20 Yuan / 1.80 GBP
This appeared as steamed “bread” on the menu, but was actually the famous Shanghai steamed buns, or Xiao Long Bao.
I received 8 steamed dumplings, 2 portions of 4 dumplings each, served in little wooden baskets and accompanied with a dark soy sauce. The dumplings were filled with minced pork and hot oily juices and were very tasty! I’d highly recommend trying them whilst in Shanghai. They are quite difficult to eat with chopsticks, though, so I had to resort to using my fingers at times.
An historic old tea house, with a huge selection of expensive teas. Tradition has given way to tourism, but don’t let that put you off paying a visit!
Stroll along the Bund at night
With all of the colonial-era buildings restored and lit up (until 10PM, I recall), it's a reminder of the incredible events of China's past century, as well as just being a spectacular sight. See Bund & Pudong travelogue for more.
"Shanghai - outlook into the future?"
Once known as Paris of the East, is now seen as a role model for China. This is how most Chinese see their country`s future. Modern skyscrapers of concrete, steel and glass with a vivid city life of a 20 million metropolis. Today there are more skyscrapers in Shanghai than there are in New York.....
But you can still find the romantic old parts with sleepy alleys in the old quarter.....but you have to hurry, except the proud colonial buildings, everything else is close to extinction. Go for a try!
Here is a short video of my first visit to Shanghai in 2003.
"The Skyline at night!"
"Great view over the Bund from JinMao Tower"