When we talk about China, which city will come into your mind? The answer of most people is Shanghai. Yes, as an international metropolis, Shanghai is the first stop of many travelers to China. And there are hundreds of travel itineraries which start from Shanghai. Do you also want to experience the charm of Shanghai in person? Take a look at the following itinerary which is a 4 days tour from Shanghai with Hangzhou. You will enjoy the cultural sites in Shanghai such as the Jade Buddha Temple and Yu Garden and you will also enjoy the natural sightseeing in Hangzhou like the West Lake. Come and visit Shanghai through the eye of China Tour Star. Your China tour from Shanghai will be more beautiful!
Welcome to Shanghai, China. Our guide will be waiting for you at the airport according to your flight. We will drive you to the hotel and help you with check-in. On the way to the hotel, your guide will give you a brief introduction to Shanghai City.
Shanghai, a bright pearl of China, is known as a magical city. As the center of China’s modernization and an international metropolis, it gathers millions of people for chasing their dreams. Shanghai could satisfy every tourist no matter what you are expecting. Shopping, tasting local dishes, visit historic sites, and so on. What you will get here is beyond your expectation.
In the morning, after breakfast, you will visit Jade Buddha Temple first. Jade Buddha Temple, located in Anyuan Road, is famous for two sets of jade Buddha statues. The temple is in an architectural style of the Song Dynasty (960-1279). The layout is clear that the Hall of Heavenly Kings, the Great Buddha’s Hall, and the Jade Buddha Hall are arranged on its central axis with other wing rooms on the east and west.
The two famous sets of jade Buddha statues are placed in the Jade Buddha Hall. One is in a sitting posture in the main room; the other is in a reclining pose in a west wing room. They are brought to Shanghai by Master Huigen. He was affected by Master Xuanzang who went on pilgrimage to South Asian countries such as India for Buddhism in the Tang Dynasty (618-907). Master Huigen decided to start his pilgrimage in 1882. He has been to lots of countries. In Myanmar, Master Huigen received five white jade Buddha statues from local Buddhist believers and overseas Chinese. In 1899, Master Huigen started to return home with these statues. When he passed Shanghai, he decided to leave one sitting Buddha statue and one reclining Buddha statue. So, a temple was built to enshrine the two jade Buddha statues. That is why it is called Jade Buddha Temple. Jade in Chinese culture embodies virtue. So, the Buddha statue carved by jade is holy and pure. Local people believe that if you tell the Buddha here your wish devoutly. It may come true soon. So, if you have some wishes, you may as well tell the Buddha.
Then, we will visit the Yu Garden (closed on Mondays). Built in the Ming Dynasty (1368-1644), the Yu Garden is a typical Chinese classical garden with the structural features of South China. It was a private garden built by an official named Pan Yunduan. He built this garden for his parents to enjoy their twilight years. The garden was named “Yu” which means safety and health in Chinese. Unfortunately, before the garden was completed, his parents had already passed away. Pan Yunduan spent his later years in the garden. After his death, the Yu Garden lost its glory and went through wars. From 1956, the Yu Garden started to be rebuilt. And after 5-year rebuilding, it was opened to the public in 1961.
The Yu Garden mainly includes four parts — the west, east, central and inner parts. The must-visit sites in the west part are Sansui Hall, Dianchun Hall, and a big rockery. Sansui Hall is where the feudal officials held celebrations and declared imperial edicts in the Qing Dynasty (1644-1912). The most famous sightseeing spot near Dianchun Hall is the Dragon Wall. The dragon head is made of clay while its body and squama are made of tiles. It vividly snakes on the wall and attracts a large number of tourists to take photos. There are other dragon walls on which the dragons are in different postures in the Yu Garden. Try to find them. Rockery is a key element in Chinese classical gardens. It is the largest and oldest one in South China, made of yellow stone about 2,000 tons. The Huijing Hall is deserved to appreciate in the east part. Deyue Hall, Zhiting Pavilion are the most attractive in the central part.
After seeing historical attractions such as the Jade Buddha Temple and Yu Garden, let's experience a different Shanghai in the afternoon. We will go to Tianzifang Market first. Tianzifang Market is a place full of artistic atmosphere. Walking in Tianzifang Market, winding through the lanes, characteristic shops and art workshops inadvertently jump into the line of sight. In addition, there are also teahouses, open-air restaurants, cafes, galleries and so on. You can buy all kinds of creative home decorations and handicrafts here, as well as authentic Shanghai snacks such as white rabbit milk candy.
Then, you will go ahead to Shanghai Tower. Located in Pudong New Area in Shanghai, Shanghai Tower is the tallest skyscraper in China and the second tallest in the world for a height of 632 meters with 127 floors above and 5 floors underground. Shanghai Tower is divided into five functional areas: a business and entertainment area, an office area, an exhibition area, a boutique hotel area, and a sightseeing area called the “Top of Shanghai”.
You will experience the ultra-fast elevator, which can reach 18 meters per second and takes just 55 seconds to get to the sightseeing hall on the 118th floor (546 meters high) of Shanghai Tower. You can enjoy Shanghai’s splendid appearance in a 360-degree panoramic view through a large transparent glass curtain wall. You will see the Oriental Pearl Tower, Jin Mao Tower, the Shanghai World Financial Center at close range. Looking in the distance, the Suzhou River and Huangpu River meandered and rushed. Row upon row of tall buildings is on both sides of the river. It looks really spectacular from a distance.
After breakfast, we will drive you to Zhujiajiao Water Town which is located in Qingpu District, west of Shanghai. It is 48 KM away from Shanghai city center and we will drive about 1 hour to get there.
As a water town, the whole town is connected by dozens of bridges. The most famous one is called Fangsheng Bridge. Fangsheng means releasing animals in nature. According to the legend, during the Ming and Qing Dynasties (1368-1912), on the first day of the lunar calendar, local monks would hold a ceremony on the bridge to release live fish into the river to show respect for life. That is how the bridge got its name. besides the legend, this stone arch bridge is the largest five-hole stone bridge in the south of China. Standing on the bridge, you may enjoy the best view of the water town. And if you come here during the Dragon Boat Festival, you can also watch the Dragon Boat Race here on the bridge.
Another attractive site is North Street with a history of more than 400 years. North Street is very prosperous and ancient people praised it as “a three-mile-long street with one thousand shops”. It has become the liveliest ancient street in the old town of South China. You may see old-style shops with red lanterns hanging under eaves. It’s a nice place to appreciate ancient buildings and get some souvenirs.
After lunch, we will drive back to the city center and then we will visit the Bund, which is the epitome of century-old Shanghai. Located at the confluence of the Huangpu River and the Suzhou River, the Bund is 1.5 kilometers long, starting from Yan’an East Road in the south and reaching Waibaidu Bridge (Garden Bridge Shanghai) on the Suzhou River in the north. In the west of the Huangpu River, you will see 52 historical buildings in various styles such as eclectic style and early modern style which is known as the “Exotic building clusters in the Bund of Shanghai”. The famous HSBC building is among them. The Bund used to be the financial and foreign trade center in old Shanghai and at that time it is known as “the Wall Street of the East”. On the east bank of the Huangpu River, the scenery is different — modern skyscrapers like the Oriental Pearl Tower stand there. The Bund is the best photo background when you come to Shanghai. So, don’t forget to take some photos here.
After that, we will head for Nanjing Road. It is one of the ten famous pedestrian streets in China, and the earliest commercial street established in Shanghai. Here is a gathering place for department stores and a paradise for shoppers. You can buy not only modern toys like Lego but also time-honored brand goods like Shen Dacheng pastry. In addition, you can see trolley cars like miniature versions of old trams shuttling back and forth, reminiscent of old Shanghai.
After breakfast, we will leave Shanghai for Hangzhou by an estimated high-speed train G7349 08:42/10:01. Our professional guide will be waiting for you at the railway station in Hangzhou.
Hangzhou is the capital city of Zhejiang Province enjoying widespread renown of landscape and legends. You will first pay a visit to West Lake. The guide will drive you to West Lake, which is 12 KM away from the railway station and takes about 35 minutes. West Lake is the World Heritage as one of the few lakes’ cultural heritage sites on the World Heritage List. The total area of the scenic area is 49 square kilometers, and the lake area is 6.38 square kilometers. West lake is an engaging site since ancient times. Its beauty has been praised by numerous writers, poets, and artists since the Tang Dynasty (618-907).
The two dikes and three islands as well as the artificial elements of the West Lake were built between the 9th and 12th centuries. You will take the West Lake Cruise to enjoy its beauty. And your guide will tell you many stories that happen on the West Lake.
After lunch, you are going to visit Feilai Peak. Feilai Peak is 168 meters high and it is famous for its oddly shaped stones which resemble a dragon, elephant, tiger, monkey, and other animals. Besides, Feilai Peak is more attractive for its stone Buddha sculptures. More than 470 stone sculptures (335 are well preserved) were carved in the caves and on the cliffs. The first three Buddha statues of Amitabha, Guanyin, and Mahasthamaprapta on the right of the entrance of Qinglin Cave were made in 951. Besides, over 200 statues were made in the Song Dynasty, among which the Vairocana Buddha statue is the most delicate and the Maitreya Buddha statue made in the Southern Song Dynasty (1127-1279) is the largest one. When you visit Feilai Peak, your guide will introduce more information to you.
Then, you will visit the Lingyin Temple, famous as the earliest Buddhist temple and one of the Top Ten Ancient Temples in China, retaining precious Buddhist scriptures of many dynasties. The temple was built in 326, covering an area of about 87,000 square meters. “Lingyin” means celestial beings living in seclusion. On the axis of Lingyin Temple stands the Hall of Heavenly Kings, the Hall of Great Buddha, the Hall of Medicine Master, the Hall of Dharma, and the Hall of Huayan, with other halls on both sides. A stone tablet stands in front of the Hall of Heavenly Kings and the inscriptions on the tablet were Emperor Qianlong’s handwriting in the Qing Dynasty (1644-1912). Every day many tourists come to worship the Buddha and pray for good health, happy life, and so on. It should be noted that visitors should be dressed properly for respecting the Buddha.
A 4-day trip to shanghai and Hangzhou comes to an end. Our guide will drive you back to Hangzhou airport. Hope you will enjoy your time.
Author: Yang Beibei
Proofreader: Betsy He
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We started with a few days in Beijing & ended in Shanghai, from where we visited the Forbidden City and Great Wall. In between we visited Terra Cotta Warriors Museum, Panda Base, Shanghai Disneyland.
We had a wonderful holiday in China which will remain long in the memory. China is a breathtakingly beautiful country full of splendid temples and palaces, mountains and rivers, peaceful rural scenes and bustling shopping streets.