*Visit one of the world's great cities, one that is bursting at the seams with culture and excitement. China's largest city, Shanghai is China's economic center and noted for its vast selection of shopping and dining
*With the new high-speed rail link between Beijing and Shanghai, visiting Shanghai has become a lot more easier and cheaper. The new train cuts the train time in half, and the price of a train ticket is much cheaper than flying. This makes for the perfect Beijing getaway!
(B=breakfast, L=lunch, D=dinner)
Day 1: Beijing-Shanghai (by bullet train) (D)
You will take China's newest and the world's fastest bullet express train to China's largest and most cosmopolitan city, Shanghai. You'll experience China's world-leading high-speed train technology which is now participating in the bidding for the U.S. California Intro-State High-speed Railroad Project from Sacramento to Los Angeles. Your local English-speaking guide will meet you whenever you arrive at the Shanghai Hongqiao Railway Station. For your stay in Shanghai you’ll be lodging at a 3 or 4 star hotel (for normal tours) or a 5 star hotel (for deluxe tours).
You will then be taken to your hotel, and then you'll have dinner at a local Shanghai restaurant, where you can experience Shanghai cuisine,which is remarkably lighter and sweeter than most other Chinese dishes. Then we’ll go to the most recognizable landmark of Shanghai, the Bund. The Bund is a waterfront embankment and has been regarded as the symbol of Shanghai for hundreds of years. It affords marvelous views across the river of the Pudong district and its numerous towers. The most famous and attractive sight which is at the west side of the Bund are the 52 various buildings of different architectural styles including Gothic, Baroque, Romanesque, Classicism and the Renaissance. At night the Bund and the surrounding skyscrapers are all lit up, making for a fabulous night on the town!
Day 2: Shanghai (B, L)
Following breakfast in the hotel we'll head out to uyuan Garden. Yuyuan Garden is a famed classical garden, and even though it may be small, it contains numerous pavilions, halls, rockeries, ponds and cloisters, and all have unique characteristics. There are six main scenic areas in the garden: Sansui Hall, Wanhua Chamber, Dianchun Hall, Huijing Hall, Yuhua Hall and the Inner Garden. Each area features several scenic spots within its borders.
Then we will pay a visit to Shanghai Old Street. Hidden behind the modern tall buildings and deep in those squiggly lanes and bystreets where the old fashioned living ways of Shanghai people still exist, Shanghai Old Street southwest of Yuyuan Garden is the one most worth visiting to find the old culture and customs. The street is over a hundred years old. The earliest private banks, jewelry stores, opera towers, hongs, taverns and teahouses in Shanghai were here originally. The restaurants, opera towers and teahouses are the definite highlights in the old street.
After experiencing the charm of the old street, we will take a time machine from old Shanghai into the city’s glittering present and future, which the Jin Mao Tower is a prime example. Being the fourth tallest building of the world and the second tallest building in China, Jin Mao Tower is located in the center of Lujiazui Finance and Trade Districts in Pudong. The architect, Adrian D. Smith, of this skyscraper ingeniously combined the elements of traditional Chinese culture with the newest architectural styles of the time, which makes Jin Mao Tower one of the best-constructed buildings in China. The tower’s observation decks give you an almost bird’s eye view of the city’s rapidly rising skyline.
The Shanghai Museum our next stop today, is a large museum of ancient Chinese art. The museum style and presentation surrounds visitors with artifacts demonstrating ancient wisdom and philosophy. The exterior design of the round dome and the square base symbolizes the ancient idea of a round heaven and a square land. The museum is divided into eleven galleries and three exhibition halls. The eleven Galleries cover most of the major categories of Chinese art: Ancient Bronze, Ancient Ceramics, Paintings, Calligraphy, Ancient Sculpture, Ancient Jade, Coins, Ming and Qing Furniture, Seals, and Minority Nationalities. The museum is a wonderful primer on ancient Chinese culture, and is a must-see when coming to Shanghai.
Our next destination today is the Jade Buddha Temple. In 1882, an old temple was built to keep two jade Buddha statues which had been brought from Burma by a monk named Huigen. The temple was destroyed during the revolution that overthrew the Qing Dynasty. Fortunately the jade Buddha statues were saved and a new temple was built on the present site in 1928. It was named the Jade Buddha Temple. Although the history of the Jade Buddha Temple is not very long, the old-time and classical architectural style makes the temple unique and inimitable in this modern city.
Your first full day in Shanghai will conclude with a walk down Nanjing Road, Shanghai’s premier shopping street. Open-air bars, abstract sculptures, and lingering sounds from street musicians enhance evening strolls. A trackless sightseeing train provides a comfortable tour of the night-transformed pedestrian street. Flashing neon signs illuminate the magnificent buildings and spangle the night skyline of this lively city.
The rest of the evening can be spent at your own leisure.