Jul 15, 2011

China - Shanghai

Nanjing Road

Welcome to Shanghai, the economic centre and the most westernized city of China with its 20 millions inhabitants!! In fact Shanghai has known a radical transformation in the last twenty years: 3.000 skyscrapers are already standing, 2.000 are at the planning stage as the traditionnal districts are progressively erased. The city spread and became one of the biggest construction site of the world to contain the amazing population growth.

Nanjing Road is the local Champs Élysées where one can see the new Chinese middle class untertained by abundant fashion stores and chain of fast food restaurants. Still 95% of Shanghai's population live with less than 200 euros per month..

Nanjing Road opens onto the Bund. This large avenue is lined with old building on its west side, mainly banks and five star hotels, which could easily fit with a Brooklin or Chicago setting from the Thirties.

The height of the other side of the Bund was raised and transformed into a large walkway along Huangpu River. We went there a Sunday afternoon to discover this place is the favourite walk for Shanghai people. And in China, when it is crowded, it is really crowded:

On the other side of Huangpu River: Pudong, Shanghai's Manhattan! In 1992 this area of farm fields became a special economic zone, launching the success story.

Pudong by day

Pudong by night

Pudong was chosen to host Shanghai Science & Technology Museum. This very modern museum looks a lot like La Villette in Paris. Exhibitions on earth exploration, ecology, human health, etc. are really well conceived with numerous interactive games for young and less young.. ;)

The Chinese old town is an endangered district. This two kilometres square area is encroached by the modern city. What a change to walk through the narrow streets with mainly two storey houses!

A part of the city is called the French Concession, even if the French power left in 1943 after a century of occupation. European-styled streets still run across this foreign concession which is one of the trendy districts of Shanghai.

The pedestrianized Xintiandi District

Nowadays the city welcomes an important French community. We met some of its representative at La Crêperie, a restaurant serving real Breton galettes!

One can easily find many parks in this gigantic concrete city. And Chineses seems to make the most of it, dancing, practicing strange gymnastics or calligraphy, playing kite, etc.

Playing with fishes in Yuyuan Gardens

Mid-Lake Pavilion Teahouse at the entrance of Yuyuan Gardens

Dance lesson in Hongkou Park


  1. Coucou les jeunes !

    Manger des galettes bretonnes en Chine, on aura tout vu !? Mais peut être y avait il des ingrédients typiques chinois... comme du soja ou des nouilles ? Brr... j'en ai des frissons...
    Gros bisous à vous deux

  2. Ingrédiens chinois: seulement le blé noir..
    Il y avait même du reblochon!! Miam ;)