Shanghai Travel and Tours Guide
Located at the center of the mainland's coastline, Shanghai has long been a major hub of communications, transportation, and international exchange.
The municipality covers an area of 6,341 square kilometers and has a population of more than 13.5 million.
Shanghai is China's largest economic comprehensive industrial base, and a famous historical and cultural city.
The city consistently attracts investment and is seen as an ideal venue for business gatherings.
It is also a must on any agenda during a tour of China.
Shanghai has fostered a comprehensive transportation network that incorporates land, sea, and air travel, as well as a convenient urban transportation system.
More than 300 airlines serve the city, proving direct flights to more than 20 countries and regions.
The addition of the Shanghai Pudong International Airport, which went into operation in 1999, is expected to increase the annual passenger volume to some 20 million.
Special tourist trains running between Shanghai and the neighboring provinces of Jiangsu and Zhejiang, as well as tourist bus routes along newly-constructed expressways, offer great convenience for regional travel.
Shanghai has more than 400 travel agencies to assist visitors, and the 127 star-rated hotels offer a total of 40, 000 guest rooms.
Visitors to Shanghai are not only dazzled by the modern metropolis and gateway to a developing China, but are also able to immerse themselves in the unique Shanghai culture, a combination of Chinese and Western elements.
Colorful festivals and celebrations dot the yearly Shanghai activities calendar, such as the Shanghai Nanhui Peach Blossoms Festival, Shanghai International Tea Culture Festival and Shanghai China International Art Festival.
Shanghai has also introduced special tour packages aimed at the different interests of visitors, such as bicycling tours, hiking tours, gourmet tours, rehabilitation and health care tours, study tours, Japanese young women's tours, honey moon tours, and convention and exhibition tours.
The well-known Bund is a must for visitors to Shanghai.
Fifty-two buildings lining the narrow shoreline of the Huangpu River offer a living exhibition of Gothic, Baroque, Roman, Classic Revival and Renaissance architectural styles, as well as combinations of Chinese and Western styles.
They are also a condensation of the recent history of the city.
The wide embankment offers ample room for strolling and is used by locals for morning exercises and evening gatherings.
In the evening, colorful lights illuminate the area and create a shimmering image deserving of the name Pearl of the Orient.
The Yu Garden
The Yu Gardens are a classical landscape in the Southern Chinese style with a history of more than 400 years.
Pavilions, halls, rockeries and ponds display the finest in landscaping from the Southern style as seen in the Ming and Qing dynasties.
More than 40 landscapes were ingeniously separated by latticed walls, winding corridors, and lattice windows.
People's Square has become the political and cultural center in Shanghai since 1994, when it was rebuilt.
In and around the square are a massive fountain named the Light of Huangpu River, 10,000 square meters of lawns, six groups of relief carvings that depict the history of Shanghai, the New Shanghai Museum, the offices of the municipal government, an underground shopping plaza, the Shanghai Grand Theater and the Shanghai Exhibition Center
The Orient Pearl TV Tower
The Orient Pearl TV Tower is 468 meters high, the tallest in Asia and third tallest in the world.
It faces the Bund across the Huangpu River.
When viewed from the Bund, the tower and the Nanpu and Yangpu bridges create a vivid imagery known as two dragons playing with a pearl.
The sphere at the top has a diameter of 45 meters and is 263 meters above ground.
The observation deck in the sphere offers a sweeping view of the city.
The revolving restaurant is set at 267 meters above Pudong New Area.
The dance ball, piano bar and 20 karaoke rooms, at 271 meters, are also opened to the public.
The penthouse, which sits at 350 meters, has an observation deck, meeting room, and coffee shop.
The tower integrates broadcasting technologies with sightseeing, catering, shopping, amusement, and accommodations.
It has become the symbol of the city and a major tourist attraction in Shanghai.
Cruise on the Huangpu River
Cruising on the Huangpu River, visitors can gaze at the mighty skyscrapers, the Monument Tower to the People's Heroes, the famous Waibaidu Bridge and Huangpu Park on one bank, and the Orient Pearl TV Tower, International Convertion Center, Jin Mao Building and the newly rising Pudong New Area on the other.
The Yangpu and Nanpu bridges span the river.
From the river, visitors can also view the ruins of ancient cannon emplacements and fortifications at Wusong and the magnificent view of the Yangtze River as it empties into the sea.
Nanjing Road East, honored as China's No.
l Street, has become an all-weather pedestrian arcade.
Shops and restaurants provide products and services with their own characteristics, making it an ideal place that integrates shopping, restaurants, amusement and sightseeing.
The museum and tomb are located in Lu Xun Park.
LU Xun was an imminent man of letters.
The museum exhibits Lu Xun's manuscripts, some of his personal effects, document.
, and photos.
The headstone at the Tomb of Lu Xun is in the calligraphy of Vhio Zedong and reads The Tomb of Mr.
Dr.Sun Yat-sen, the forerunner of the Chinese democratic revolution, and his wilr Soong Ching Ling, lived in this building from 1918 to 1924.
It was in the residence that Dr.
Sun Yat-sen met representatives of the Communist Party and fostered the first cooperation between the Chinese Communist Party and the Kuomintang.
Soong Ching Ling's Residence
This is the former residence of Soong Ching Ling.
an honorary chairwoman of the People's Republic of China and the widow of Sun Yat-sen.
She lived, worked, and studied here during the last years of her life.
Birthplace of the Communist Party of China.
In July of 1921, the First National Communist Party Congress was held in this building.
The congress passed the Party's program and resolutions, elected the central committee, and declared the founding of the CPC.
The new Shanghai Library, which covers an area of some 80,000 square meters, has a collection of 13 million books and is considered one of the top ten libraries in the world.
The library incorporates the open-stacks approach favored in the West, which allows for convenience in borrowing books.
Shanghai Grand Theater
Located in the northwestern corner of People's Square.
the Shanghai Grand Theater covers 70,000 squat, meters.
It is actually composed of three theaters.
The theaters can accommodate performances of ballet opera, symphonies, chamber music modern dramas, and musicals.
The theater also owns the largest, fully automatic stage in Asia.
The theater has become a symbol of modern culture in Shanghai.
Cultural Celebrities' Street, located along Duolun Road and surrounding areas,is a living memorial to the modern cultural celebrities of Shang-hai and is also a condensation of modern culture.
Such Chinese literary giants as Lu Xun, Mao Dun, Guo Moruo and Ye Shengtao lived and wrote here,making the road an important feature in China's modern cultural history.
In addition, the famous Gongfei Cafe.
Celebrities Mansion, the Shanghai Art Opera Troupe, and Hai Shang Jiu Li also display the accumulated cultural atmosphere of Duolun Road today.
Ladies and gentlemen, today we are going to visit a famous Buddhist temple---the Jade Buddha Temple.
Before visiting the temple, I’d like to say a few words about the religious situation in Shanghai.
Our constitution stipulates that every Chinese citizen is ensured the freedom of religious belief.
There are four major religions in practice in Shanghai, namely, Buddhism, Taoism, Islam, and Christianity, which is sub-divided into the Catholic Church and the Protestant Church.
When it comes to Buddhist temples in China, they are usually classified into three sects, i.
temples for meditation, for preaching and for practicing Buddhist disciplines.
The Jade Buddha Temple is a temple for meditation, and is well-known both at home and abroad.
The temple was first built during the reign of Emperor Guangxu of Qing Dynasty, when a monk named Hui Gen went on a pilgrimage to Burma and brought back five jade statues of Sakyamuni.
On his way back to Mount Putuo via Shanghai, he left two jade statues here, one in sitting posture and the other, reclining.
He had a temple specially built as a shrine for these two statues in 1882.
later the temple was partly destroyed by fire and in 1928 a new temple was completed on the present site.
Just opposite the temple gate, there stands a giant screen wall.
Various designs, such as dragon, phoenix, elephant, crane and peony are carved on it.
In Chinese legend, all these things are considered the symbols of fortune, wealth, longevity and auspiciousness.
Chinese people used to set up a wall in front of the house so as to keep the evils away.
Now ladies and gentlemen, please turn around.
Here we can see the temple gate.
It is also called the Sanmen Gate, or say, the Gate of Three Extrications.
The door in the middle is called the Door of Emptiness, to its right is the Door of Non-phenomenon, and to its left, the Door of Non-Action.
Sanmen Gate is also called the Mountain Gate because most famous temples in China are found deep in mountains.
But the Sanmen gate does not open except on the first and the fifteenth of every lunar month.
Now this way to the entrance.
Ladies and gentlemen, the first hall is the Heavenly King Hall.
We will use the rear door, please follow me.
(in the Heavenly King Hall next to the southern entrance)
Here we can find the statue of a fat and smiling monk with bared belly.
He is Bodhisattva Maitreya.
His smile is so contagious that you will smile with him and forget all your worries.
So he is also called the Laughing Buddha.
According to Buddhist scripture, he is now practicing Buddhism in the Tusita Heaven.
After 4000 years, which is equal to 5.
67 billion years on the earth, he will become successor to Sakyamuni under a Long Hua Tree in Hualin Garden.
Hence another name the Future Buddha.
But this statue we see here is not the real image of Bodhisattva Maitreya, it is just his incarnation.
it is said that During the Five Dynasties Period, 1000 years ago, there lived in Fenhua in Zhejiang Province a monk named Qi Ci, who always carried a wooden staff with a cloth sack on his shoulder.
He often went around towns and in streets to beg alms.
Therefore he became known as “the Cloth Sack Monk”.
He always smiled and laughed, looking as happy as ever.
When he was dying, he left the message saying that he was the incarnation of Bodhisattva Maitreya.
So his image is enshrined in the Buddhist Temple as the incarnation of Bodhisattva Maitreya.
(on the eastern side of the Heavenly King Hall)
On the two sides of the hall are enshrined four statues.
They are so-called Four Heavenly Kings.
In the Buddhist legend, there is in the center of the world a highest mountain called Mount Sumeru.
Halfway on it is a mountain called Mount Ghandara with four peaks.
On each peak lives a Heavenly King protecting the Buddhist heaven.
The first one is the Southern King---King of Developing Merits.
His duty is to educate all living creatures and develop king-heartedness.
He is holding a sword in his hand which can emit a ray to chop off the enemies’ heads.
The one next to him is the Eastern King---King of Protection for Buddhism.
He is holding in his hand a pipa, which is somewhat like a guitar.
With this pipa, he offers music to the Buddha.
Meanwhile this pipa is a magic weapon.
It can send out a musical rhythm to defeat the enemy by tormenting brain and causing him to lose combatability.
Now ladies and gentlemen, please come over to this side.
(on the western side of the Heavenly King Hall)
The first one on this side is the Northern King---King of Virtue.
He is so called because of his virtue.
He is holding a parasol-shaped stela in his hand.
The parasol can be opened into a canopy in Buddhist processions.
It is at the same time a magic umbrella.
Once it is opened in the battle field, the sky turns dark and a wind-storm rises, defeating the enemy with a dizzy spell and then it closes up capturing all the enemies.
Next to him is the Western King---King of Far Sight.
He observes the world with his penetrating eyes.
He is holding a dragon-shaped silk rope.
The rope is actually a net, with which he converts people to Buddhism just like catching fish with a net.
This dragon also has a magic power.
It can spurt water from its mouth and drown the enemy in floods.
(in the Heavenly King Hall next to the rear door)
The Statue facing the rear door is Bodhisattva Skanda.
He is always dressed in armour with a worrior’s club in his hand.
Originally he was one of the eight heavenly generals under the Southern King of Developing Merits.
Later he has been enshrined here because of his bravery.
He is also a god of message, a fleet-foot runner, so when visitors come to the temple, he will immediately report to the Buddha in the Grand Hall.
Now ladies and gentlemen, that’s all for the Heavenly King Hall.
Please follow me and look out the threshold and the steps.
Now we can see a giant tripod in the courtyard.
It is actually a giant incense burner.
It was donated by some Buddhist laymen who believed that by donating something the Buddha they can help purify the souls of their dead relatives from sins and relieve them from purgatory.
Now this is the main hall, known as the Grand Hall or Grand Hall of the Great Sage.
It is the main structure in every Buddhist temple, where the statue of Sakyamuni, the founder of Buddhism is enshrined.