Soap World - - THE GOSS! -

It’s one of the biggest cities in the world but even in just a day this me­trop­o­lis puts on a show. Here’s how to en­joy 24 spe­cial hours.

Of all China’s great cities, there has al­ways been some­thing ex­tra spe­cial about Shang­hai. The city, ac­claimed as one of the biggest in the world, evokes so much his­tory, ex­cite­ment and in­de­fin­able glam­our.

Leg­end claims that it was 1000 years ago that the Chi­nese named the city Shang­hai, based on its lo­ca­tion, as in Man­darin it lit­er­ally trans­lates into “above the sea”. Its stunning water­front po­si­tion on a coast­line that juts out into the South China Sea dic­tates so much of the way this city op­er­ates.

The city is also di­vided into two parts by the Huangpu

River: Puxi is to the river’s west and Pudong is to the east. Puxi is the older part of the city and hosts the ma­jor­ity of shops, restau­rants and fa­mous mu­se­ums. Pudong is where the mod­ern face of China looks to the fu­ture, with its dra­matic sky­line that reaches for the skies. It’s from the view­ing plat­forms at the top of some of these tow­ers, like the Jin­mao Build­ing and Ori­en­tal Pearl

TV Tower, that the enor­mity of this city that spreads out in all di­rec­tions can be taken in.

While the high views are mag­nif­i­cent, the best way to take in this thriv­ing me­trop­o­lis is on the ground. And even with just 24 hours for you to ex­plore it, Shang­hai puts on a great show.

Start a day in Shang­hai by head­ing to Jing An Park to be greeted by the calm­ing sight of many lo­cals do­ing a morn­ing ses­sion of tai chi. They even wel­come you to step in be­hind them, and join in. The

and fash­ion, or to Sci­ence and Tech­nol­ogy Mu­seum Market for T-shirts and shoes. Over on Nan­jing Road are high-end lux­ury stores like Chanel and Gucci. For sou­venirs, try the

Yu Yuan Gar­den, which is not just a great market but also one of the true beau­ties of the city, with its tra­di­tional Chi­nese gar­den and lake.

Also at the Yu Yuan Gar­den is the Shang­hai in­sti­tu­tion of the Dumpling Shop and Tea House. The lo­cals be­gin lin­ing up early, even for lunch, but as the dumplings are deemed the best in town, the wait is more than worth it.

Af­ter lunch, an easy taxi ride away is Mo­gan­shan Lu road, the city’s new­est arts hub known for its ware­house gal­leries like

Eastlink, Bizart and ShanghART. This is where to find all kinds of won­der­ful Chi­nese art, mainly in con­tem­po­rary style, as well as ex­hi­bi­tions of up-and-com­ing Shang­hai artists.

The most fa­mous area of Shang­hai is the Bund, on the Huangpu River, for its fa­cades of grand Euro­pean ar­chi­tec­ture. The way the Bund area bus­tles around the river­front makes this one of the most ex­cit­ing places in the city, and a per­fect stop­ping point for din­ner. Lost

Heaven is leg­endary for its Hu­nan cui­sine and great tastes. If in need of some Western flavours, try the chic M on the

Bund, run by Aus­tralian chef Michelle Gar­naut. Right be­low M is Glam­our

Bar, which of­fers one of Shang­hai’s best cock­tail menus. This is where the beau­ti­ful peo­ple hang out so it’s per­fect to peo­ple watch here. It’s also the ideal spot to take in the view of the lights across the river, and to fin­ish off a day in Shang­hai.

Dumplings and other tra­di­tional del­i­ca­cies are a treat in this city.

Lo­cals start the day at Jing An Park har­mon­is­ing body and mind with tai chi. Vis­i­tors can join in, too!

The Ori­en­tal Pearl TV Tower is well worth a visit for its amaz­ing views across to the Bund and right over the city.

A view of Shang­hai show­ing the vast Huangpu River, with the Bund and the older district of Puxi at right and the more mod­ern Pudong area at left. A cruise on the river is a great way to see the city. The beau­ti­ful Yu Yuan Gar­den is a peace­ful oa­sis in Old Shang­hai.

Nan­jing Road shop­ping precinct is a vi­brant area day and night.

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