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Shanghai is China's economic powerhouse, but there are also historic districts and traces of European grandeur.

Situated at the Yangtze River Delta, we all know Shanghai as 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. But during its heyday in the early 20th century, Shanghai was one of the most important trading ports in the world and 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 and the old buildings of Xintiandi hark back to yesteryear.

On a Shanghai holiday you can also easily reach a number of ancient water towns, as well as the classical Chinese gardens of Suzhou on day trips.

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Where to Visit in China: Complete Guide

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Discover the picturesque streets of the historic French Concession, now home to laid-back cafes and trendy shops.

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Suzhou classical gardens

Historic Suzhou is a picturesque city of beautiful gardens, traditional Chinese pagodas and narrow canals.

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Ancient Water Towns

Traditional wooden houses jut up to one another, reflecting in the sleepy canals, crossed by graceful bridges.

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Courtyard by Marriott


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Peninsula Hotel Shanghai


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Yangtze Hotel


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