Shanghai Attractions: Pudong
The east side of the Huangpu River was known historically as the "wrong side" of the water and was a largely agricultural area famous for its crime, poverty and sleaze. Shanghai crime boss Du Yuesheng (1887-1951) aka "Big-eared Du" was associated with this rough part of town.
This all changed in 1990 when Pudong was granted New Open Economic Development Zone status and the once poor district has now risen to be the financial and commercial hub of the Chinese economy.
Lujiazui is the main commercial area of Pudong located across from the Bund spreading out from the entrance of the Bund Tourist Tunnel. Here is the 457m-high Oriental Pearl TV Tower and the more elegant Jinmao Tower, both buildings offering superb views back to the Bund. The 420m-high Jinmao Tower, was mainland China's tallest building until overtaken by the Shanghai World Financial Center (see below). Both are due to be over-reached by the 632m-high Shanghai Tower which is scheduled for completion in 2014. The Jinmao Tower is home to the 5-star, 555-room Grand Hyatt Hotel and the high-altitude Cloud 9 bar.
The Shanghai Municipal History Museum (Tel 021 5879 8888) is located in the base of the Oriental Pearl TV Tower with fun, interactive exhibits dealing mostly with Shanghai's pre-1949 history as a foreign-influenced port. Dioramas recreate the atmosphere of treaty port-era Shanghai shops and businesses.
Other high-rise in the Lujiazui area are the Shanghai World Financial Center and the Shanghai Stock Exchange. The Shanghai World Financial Center includes the world's highest hotel - the Park Hyatt Shanghai and is presently the highest building on mainland China.
The China Sex Culture Exhibition, the personal collection of academic Liu Dalin, is on the Binjiang Dadao promenade on the river's edge. On display are exhibits of historic dildoes, sex toys and erotica.
4km south west from Lujiazui along Shiji Dadao is Century Park, one of Shanghai's largestest open spaces, and the Science and Technology Museum at the subway stop of that name on Line 2. The exhibits include sections on China's space program, robotics and life science as well as some amazing IMAX cinemas.
North of the museum is the Oriental Arts Centre ( 425 Dingxiang Road, Tel: 021 6854 1234) designed by French architect Paul Andrea, who was also behind the National Grand Theater in Beijing.
The vast, glass orchid-shaped concert venue puts on both international and domestic opera, classical musical concerts and plays. The building is lovely, particularly when illuminated at night.
The nearest subway station to Lujiazui is Lujiazui on Line 2. Pudong Avenue is on Line 4 to the east. Line 4 intersects with Line 2 at Century Avenue. There are also ferries across the river from the Bund.
© Weimin Liu