This was our first day of touring with Odyssey Tours.Our guide picked us up and we went by car, first to the Bund with an explanation about each of the main buildings – both old and new. The western side of the river has the old buildings and they all have a history of their own. The eastern side has the very tall modern buildings – the tallest at present is the Shanghai Financial Centre Building and is nicknamed the “bottle-opener” because of the large rectangular opening at the top to allow air/wind to pass through it.
We went to the Jade Buddha Temple where the buddha is made from white jade. People were lighting incense sticks to pray to the buddha.
The Shanghai Museum was four floors of wandering corridors displaying many aspects of Chinese culture. I enjoyed the fabrics and embroidery on the traditional clothing, the carved jade and the carved furniture. You could spend a few hours here if you wanted but we were on a tight timeframe and went on to Xintiandi (the French connection) with buildings in the French style. Following this , we were taken to a silk factory but we resisted the pressure to buy silk quilts and quilt covers, although they were very beautiful.
Tonight we went to the Bund to view the buildings lit up. It was very cold but there were lots of Chinese people strolling looking at the lights as well. Both sides of the river were lit with the eastern modern side with more spectacular lighting.
On the way back tothe hotel we decided to stop at a localrestaurant. It feels really safe walking around Shanghai at night so we continue to do it rather than getting a taxi. Taxis are very cheap here though which is great. The restaurant had pictures in theirmenu this timewhich made it a littlebit easier. We cmmunicated via gestures with a young man next to us about what he was eating and he pointed out a dish on the menu which we then ordered. It tasted great but there were really tiny bones on the dish as well as lots of chilli. We had no idea what we were eating so took a photo of the menu item tosave up forour guide the next day.