Landmarks of Shanghai

(study-shanghai.org) | Mar 14, 2014

Every major city has a list of must-see places, the sites you don’t want to miss, and Shanghai is no exception. The following are eight landmarks, places where the East meets the West, and the past meets the present. The city is partly defined by these landmarks:

World Architecture on the Bund


World Architecture on the Bund [Provided to China Daily]

The Bund symbolizes Shanghai and is home to dozens of historical buildings, along the Huangpu River, that previously housed banks and trading houses from the United Kingdom, France, the United States, Italy, Russia, and elsewhere. It now has 52 buildings in various architectural styles - Romanesque, Gothic, Renaissance, Baroque, Neo-classical, Beaux-Art, and Art Deco - harmonious in color and style, giving it the name "Gallery of World Architecture". When night falls and the lights come on, they are all aglow, glistening and dazzling the eye.


World Architecture on the Bund [Provided to China Daily]

Address: Zhongshan (E1) Rd, Shanghai

People's Square
The square is situated in the Huangpu district, as a large public space and a standard reference point for measuring distances in the city. The municipal government building is on its north side. After Shanghai  opened as a commercial port, in 1843, the square was a part of a site for horseracing. In the 1990s, the city government and Shanghai Museum were moved here, with more recent additions being the Grand Theater and Urban Planning Exhibition Hall.

Parts of the race course still remain and the old clubhouse has become the Shanghai Art Museum, while another part is People's Park. Prominent landmarks  include the JW Marriott, City Hall, Grand Theater, Shanghai Museum, Shanghai Art Museum, Urban Planning Exhibition Center, and People's Park. There are also major department stores, including Raffles' City, the No1 Department Store and New World Department Store.

Getting there: The easiest way is by Metro Lines 1, 2, or 8.  

Shanghai Grand Theater 
Shanghai Grand Theater was designed by the French architect Jean-Marie Charpentier, with a uniquely gorgeous style and has become a landmark in Shanghai since its opening in 1998 and has helped make People's Square a center of politics and culture. The 11,528-sq-m theater has 10 floors and has the look of a crystal palace, at night, as the white arc of the roof joins the light-sensitive glass curtain wall.

The dominant color of the approximately 2,000-sq-m lobby is white, to signify elegance and purity and a large chandelier, consisting of six pan-pipe lamps, is suspended above it. The floor is made of a rare form of marble called "Greek Crystal White" and has a piano-like pattern, which, when combined with the pillars and the stairs, has a sense of rhythm, so that people feel as if they want to stay in this musical world.

Address: 300 People's Boulevard, Huangpu district, Shanghai
Tel: +86-21-6386-8686

Yuyuan Garden
This famous classical garden was built during the Ming Dynasty (1368-1644), by Pan Yunduan, a finance minister from Sichuan, and was previously known as the "Greatest beauty of Jiangnan (southern Yangtze River) style gardens ". It was renovated by the government several times, after 1949, and is now a key relic under State protection.

Address: 218 Anren Rd, Shanghai
Tel: +86-21-6328-2465

Xintiandi (New Heaven and Earth), is considered one of China’s first lifestyle centers as a pedestrian shopping, dining and entertainment area consisting of restored traditional shikumen (stone gate) houses in narrow alleys, a modern shopping mall with cinema complex, and some adjoining houses turned into bookstores, cafes and restaurants, most of which provide both indoor and outdoor seating houses, as well as an art gallery.

Its marketing mainly targets overseas and Hong Kong visitors, looking to experience the romantic atmosphere of old Shanghai. Among the more affluent locals, dining or shopping in this area is seen as a status symbol and many tour groups, both Chinese and foreign, consider it a major stop in their visit to Shanghai.

Address: South Huangpi Rd, near Madang Rd

Shanghai World Finance Center
The Finance Center is a very tall skyscraper that is a mix of offices, a hotel, conference rooms, observation decks, and shopping malls. The Park Hyatt Shanghai is the hotel part, with 174 rooms and suites, above the neighboring Grand Hyatt Shanghai, on the 53rd to 87th floors of the Jin Mao Tower. The center had China’s tallest roof when it opened in August 2008, at 492 meters. It has three observation decks, the lowest at 423 m (1,388 ft), on the 94th floor, the second, "Observatory Bridge ", at 439 m (1,440 ft), on the 97th floor, and the highest at 474 m (1,555 ft), on the 100th floor.

Address: 100 Century Avenue, Pudong
Tel: +86-21-6877-7878

Oriental Pearl TV Tower  
The TV Tower was designed by Jia Huan Cheng, of the Shanghai Modern Architectural Design Co. Construction work on it began in 1991 and was completed in 1995. At 468 meters, it was the tallest structure on the mainland until 2007, when it was surpassed by the city’s Finance Center. The TV Tower is a member of the World Federation of Great Towers and has 11 spheres, large and small, with the two biggest, up and down the length of the tower, at 50 meters in diameter, for the lower, and 45 meters for the upper. They are linked by three columns, each 9 meters in diameter, with the highest 14 meters in diameter.

There is a revolving restaurant at the 267 meters level. The tower also contains exhibition facilities, restaurants, a shopping mall, and a 20-room hotel, the Space Hotel, between the two larger spheres. It has 15 observatory levels, the highest (the Space Module) at 350 meters. The structure is said to be based on a line from the Tang Dynasty poem Pipa (Lute) Song, of Bai Juyi about how the instrument’s sound is like pearls falling on a jade plate. With enough imagination and seen from afar, the tower’s oriental pearls seem to be the playthings of two dragon, the Yangpu Bridge and the Nanpu bridge. The tower draws in more than three million visitors a year.

Address: 1 Pudong Century Avenue, Shanghai
Tel: +86-21-5879-1888

Nanjing Road pedestrian walkway

Nanjing Road has been referred to as “China’s No 1 street” and is the epitome of Shanghai history and culture. The 1,033-meter-long pedestrian walkway stretches from the Bund to People's Square and is lined with 600 shops, from some, 100 years old, to famous-brand ones, to specialty shops.


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