To get some last minute shopping done, we were taken to Yuyuan, Shanghai’s Old Town district.
This was the main Chinese district of downtown Shanghai during the colonial era (1842-1949). It was encircled by a wall that came down when the last dynasty fell, in 1911. The old city wall, 27 ft. high and 3 miles round, dated from the 16th century, when it served as a barrier against Japanese pirates. It is considered the oldest district of Shanghai; its shops, the most traditional; its steamed dumplings, the best. (And I had some…so I know that it’s true!) Within this former walled city, the Old Town Bazaar is now a large pedestrian mall and alleyway labyrinth. There are hundreds of traditional Chinese craft & souvenir shops.
You can literally get lost in the alleyways (they all look the same after awhile!)
In one of the courtyards, sits this golden money tree. Each red ribbon has a coin attached and you throw it up onto a branch for good luck.
If you read my tea farm entries, you will recall the “art teas”. Here are some examples of different art teas for sale.
The main square of Old Town has two strangely familiar sights…Dairy Queen …
And of course…Starbucks!
There is also a famous tea house in the main square…
And a department store, I believe, in this beautiful building…
I picked up a few gifts (can’t reveal them here) …and then went back to the bus. Our next stop is the high speed Shanghai Maglev train!