Located at the center of the mainlands 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 Chinas 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 womens 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 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.
Peoples 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 Peoples 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 Chinas 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 Xuns 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. Lu Xun.
Dr. Suns Residence
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 Lings Residence
This is the former residence of Soong Ching Ling. an honorary chairwoman of the Peoples 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 Partys 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 Peoples 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 Chinas 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.
The Red Star Pavilion in the Pipasha Park, the Kansheng Pavilion in the Eling Park, and a place called Yikeshu on the Nanshan Mountain are vintage points for observing the nocturnal scenes of the mountain city of Chongqing. At night the entire city is inundated in an ocean of lights, which form a colorful three-dimensional painting, with waves of the Yangtze and Jialing rivers glistening against the moonlit, star spangled sky.
Sites of the Provisional Capital
Chongqing figured importantly in modem Chinese history. During the War of Resistance against Japan, it was the "provisional capital" of China under the Kuomintang rule from November 1937 to October 1945. Vestiges of that period are still there in and around the city. These include the Red Crag Village and 50 Zengjiayan, as well as Chiang Kai-shek's mansion, Guiyuan Garden, Linyuan Garden, and the mansion of C.C. Kong, the embassies of various countries to China, as well as former residences of important politicians, generals and cultural figures.
Martyrs' Mausoleum at Mount Gele
The former headquarters, radio station and prison of the Bureau of Investigation and Statistics of the Military Council (a colossal secret service of the Kuomintang) at the foot of the Gele Mountain in Shapingba District have become the mausoleum for those who died a martyr's death there in China's dark days. In the dying years of World War 11, it was the site of the "Sino0US Institute for Cooperation in Special Technology".
The Dazu Grottoes in the county of the same name is best known for the stone carvings on the Baodingshan and Beishan mountains, which are fine example of grotto sculpture in the late years of Chinese feudalism. The sculptures, done in fastidious chisel work and gracious imagery, are marked by a new sculptural language that eschews religious taboos and espouses true life.
Yangtze River's Three Gorges
Sailong down the Yangtze from Chongqing to Yichang allows visitors to see the spectacular scenery of the Three Gorges along with its splendid cultural heritage and fabled local folklore. The cruise, which combines sightseeing with scientific, artistic and folklore exploration, is a national-caliber tourist program. The 193-km-long Three Gorges, consisting of the majestic Qutangxia, statuesque Wuxia and ferocious Xilingxia gorges, is one of and ferocious Xilongxia gorges, is one of the world's major canyons. Along the way there are such scenic attractions as the Fengdu Mountain. Baidi city, Shibao village, Zhang Fel's Temple, Qu Yuan's Temple, and the Three Gorges Dam.
Lesser Three Gorges
The Daning River is the largest Yangtze tributary, which rises in the southern side of the Daba Mountain and flows for 250km before emptying itself into the Yangtze at the western entrance to the Wuxia Gorge. The Lesser Three Gorges on the Daning River, a 50km-long affair covering the Longmenxia, Bawuxia and Dicuixia gorges in the lower reaches of the river, is billed as one of China's 40 best scenic resorts thanks to its gorgeous mountains, elegant peaks, turbulent rapids, limpid water, exotic rock imagery and serene scenery.
Diaoyu City, Hechuan
Established in 1242, or the 2nd year of the Chunyou reign of the Southern Song, Diaoyu City covers 2.5 square km up the Diaoyu Mountain on the southern shore of the Jialing River in Hechuan City's Heyang Town. In 1258, the Mongols launched a three-way attack on the Song, and in February the next year Diaoyu City found itself besieged. The Song army mounted a valiant counterattack that last3ed for 36 years, and made world war history by rebuffing a strong enemy with a weak force. This prompted some European historians to laud Diaoyu City as the "Mecca of the East" and "Where God broke his whip". The ruins of the ancient battlefield of Diaoyu City are well kept there.
Nicknamed "Less Mount Emei", Jinyun Mountain is a national scenic resort 55km from downtown Chongqing.
Furong Cave, Wulung
The Furong (Hibiscus) Cave is located by the Furong River in Wulung County. The main part of the cave is 2,700 metres in length and 3.7 square metres in area. The Splendid Cave is the most impressive. Housed in it are nearly 30 varieties of stalactites chiseled into every manner of exotic imagery by the cunning labor of nature. Major attractions are Gold Throne Hall, Leifeng Pagoda and Sky-reaching Jade Pillar.
Located at Pipashan Street, the Chongqing Museum is in the possession of more than 100,000 cultural artifacts, including 10,000 or so valuable ones.
Chongqing Nature Museum
Local natural history and fauna and flora samples are on display in the Chongqing Nature Museum in Beibei district, which includes a display room for dinosaurs that have been founding Sichuan.
Other Scenic Attractions
Other scenic attractions include the south and north Hot springs, Red Crag Village, Simian (Four-Face) Mountain, Jinfo (Golden Buddha) Mountain, Earth's Chasm at Tianjing Gorge, and Heavenly Crate at Xiaozhai village.
Three Gorges Tourist Festival
Time: June every year
What's On: Cruise on the Three Gorges of the Yangtze River, the Ghost City at Fengdu, Dazu Grottoes, Shibao Village, Zhang Fei's Temple, Baidi City at Fengjie and Lesser Three Gorges. Other activities include float parade, full-length variety show and tourist business talks.