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Shanghai by Xiquinho Silva
Wuzhen town by Jakub Hałun
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Situated on the Huangpu River, roughly equidistant from Beijing and Hong Kong, Shanghai is the powerhouse of the Chinese economy. Bold, futuristic and in a continual state of development, it is the country's biggest metropolis, with a collection of skyscrapers in the Pudong district that combine to create one of the world's most recognisable skylines. Nowhere are they better appreciated than from The Bund waterfront, lined with grand historic banks, hotels and offices on one side and with sweeping views across the river to the gleaming forest of towers on the other. It is most spectacular after dark when the dramatic neon lights set the scene ablaze with colour.
Standing in the immense People's Square, it is difficult to visualize how this huge public space was once a thriving oval-shaped racetrack, a social focal point in early 20th century Shanghai. The square today encompasses the immaculately manicured People's Park, the sleek Grand theatre and a collection of world-class museums. In the square alone you can chart the urban development of this mega-city, survey modern and traditional art and journey through over 5,000 years of cultural development.
In its heyday Shanghai enjoyed the nickname "Paris of the East", traces of which remain in the French Concession, a charming area of tree-lined streets filled with pretty European-style villas, fashionable boutiques, antique street markets and local cafes. The wonderful Yu Gardens are equally impressive, with a large rockery, magnificent tea house, temple and traditional bazaar.
From Shanghai you can also easily reach a number of ancient water towns, as well as the classical Chinese gardens of Suzhou on day trips. See below for more.
17 Nights from
Contrast China's imperial and communist past in Beijing to its booming present in Shanghai, via the Great Wall, the Terracotta Army, historic Xi'an, storyb…
Day 1 - Fly to Beijing
Day 2 - Welcome to Beijing
Day 3 - Special tour - Beijing's past & present
Day 4 - At leisure or optional tours
Day 5 - Hike the Great Wall of China
Day 6 - Fly to Xi'an
Day 7 - See the 8,000 strong Terracotta Army
Day 8 - Xi'an at leisure or optional tours
Day 9 - Bullet Train to Chengdu & time at leisure
Day 10 - Baby & Giant Pandas up close
Day 11 - Come face-to-face with the 71m Giant Buddha
Day 12 - Spectacular caves & drive to Rice Terraces
Day 13 - Magnificent views of Longji Rice Terraces
Day 14 - Cruise past the karst peaks along the Li River
Day 15 - Hike or cycle through the wonderful landscapes
Day 16 - Welcome to Shanghai
Day 17 - Highlights of Shanghai
Day 18 - Free time or optional tours
Day 19 - Return flight to the UK
13 Nights from
Explore eastern China by Bullet Train, with no internal flights. Visit historic Beijing and modern Shanghai and enjoy classic gardens, ancient canals and s…
Day 1 - Fly to Shanghai
Day 2 - Welcome to Shanghai
Day 3 - Highlights of Shanghai
Day 4 - At leisure in Shanghai
Day 5 - Suzhou's Classical Gardens
Day 6 - Bullet Train to Hangzhou
Day 7 - Hangzhou & West Lake
Day 8 - Hangzhou at leisure
Day 9 - Transfer to Huangshan & ancient village
Day 10 - Spectacular mountain landscapes
Day 11 - Bullet Train to Beijing
Day 12 - Special tour - Beijing's past & present
Day 13 - At leisure or optional tours
Day 14 - Hike the Great Wall of China
Day 15 - Return flight to the UK
12 Nights from
Cruise down the Yangtze River in style and see China's most iconic sights: the Forbidden City, the Great Wall, the Terracotta Army and Shanghai's skyline.…
Day 8 - Fly to Chongqing & board cruise ship
Day 9 - Shore Excursion to Shibao Pagoda
Day 10 - Dramatic Three Gorges scenery
Day 11 - Three Gorges Dam & fly to Shanghai
Day 12 - Skyscrapers, local life & European heritage
Day 14 - Return flight to the UK
Gain an in-depth perspective on Shanghai's past and present in the company of our local experts.
Master of the Net's garden in Suzhou by Rita Heine
Historic Suzhou is a picturesque city of beautiful gardens, traditional Chinese pagodas and narrow canals.
Traditional wooden houses jut up to one another, reflecting in the sleepy canals, crossed by graceful bridges.
A multi-award winning urban retreat, providing a haven of tranquillity in a bustling metropolis, with a Michelin star res…
This renowned 5 star hotel is ideally located close to the Bund and the People's Square. It offers a choice of spacious a…
A well-appointed 4 star hotel located in the heart of downtown Shanghai, offering modern facilities and a choice of dinin…
This contemporary 4 star hotel is conveniently located close to the railway station in downtown Shanghai.
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