Great for souvineers
At first as you pass through the dusty streets with cheap goods and food stalls and come into a beautiful narrow shop filled street, you think you are in a huge tourist trap. However the bargaining can be fierce and it is challenging but fun to sort out the fake from the real. There are however some shops selling only higher end products with no bargaining .The stores sell a everything including chopsticks, Chinese medicine, walking sticks, fans, silk , bamboo and rattan furniture, goldfish, pottery, plus much more
There are 2 starbucks here...why who knows.
Shanghai Gardens Retaurant
We ate here twice at night, and the food was average, not wonderful, but certainly edible. I know Alice had warned me not to eat here, she had and said it was not very nice. But, you know, sometimes when you have had a long hard day (retail therapy is hard work!) you just want to take the elevator downstairs, eat a meal, and then go back upstairs and put your pj's on!
First meal we ate here we shared a rice soup, plus a dish of mushrooms and bok choy, plus some spring rolls, at a total cost of about 60rmb = about $10AUD. The prices were comparitive and the quantity of food served was quite large, we just felt that it lacked flavour.
The second meal we ate here consisted of spring rolls, dumplings and a noodle dish, which Tracy and I shared, at a total cost of about 58rmb = about $10AUD.
Shanghai Museum - Ceramics Pieces
Here are some of the ceramics pieces I enjoyed looking at in the Museum. These three pieces are big, and all of them came from the Tang Dynasty. The man on the camel had Middle-Eastern facial features, which is evidence of a once bustling-trade between China and other countries (eg. India, Persia etc) during that time.
Ceramics from Tang Dynasty are also known as "Tang San Cai".
"Big, dirty... gawdy? It's a Chinese New York City"
And yet has a certain air... of growth, a booming growth seen all over the nation, so rapid it's almost scary. And Shanghai wants to be at the fore.
Well, it's river scene has nothing on Hong Kong. Sorry Shanghai. I didn't find Shanghai to be as great as Hong Kong, and it may never be, though they'll try. But they'll try by building it up and up... sub-par construction that looks shiny and new when complete. They want to force its growth, it seems, to compete with Hong Kong. Best of luck.
I just didn't find Shanghai to be all it's cracked up to be. Maybe that was my situation and mood. Maybe I'm getting tired of all the monotonous concrete buildings of Chinese cities, the lack of much in the way of nature... the way nature and tradition are bulldozed for "growth", the westernizing of China... I don't want to find the West here. Yet they eat it up... anything western... it is sad, very sad, for me, a traveler, to hear my music on their ringtones, see my fast food clog their arteries, and most of all to see them blindly rushing toward the western light. No! Don't leave your culture, China, to the overpriced tourist performances and "discovering" along with millions of others... some gawdy reproductions. Travelers want the real China. (See my Yangshuo page)
Don't waste what you have, China! Everyone is crazed by capitalist monies and commercialism and doesn't see nor care about the destruction in their wake. They move to the smoggy cities and another concrete pile goes up by the spindly hands of another tower crane, built atop the ruins of history and tradition and culture, whored out to the god of money. Sure, it's shiny, but it doesn't hold the answer. Some day you wil look to your past and wonder what became of China.