Sunday, 11 November 2012

Shanghai Day 6 - Top of the world

Another day of sightseeing today.  After breakfast, my colleague and I met her friend's daughter, who is working in Shanghai at the moment.  She took us to Tianzifang, a small area of the city made up of old buildings and lanes.  It was all a bit boho and arty, with lots of little galleries and shops selling decent touristy items (rather than the tourist tat you find in the fake markets).
Tianzifang lanes

After that we walked to a local antique market - which this time did actually have some old(er) items in amongst the mass produced rubbish!  I especially wanted to buy a load of the old leather suitcases and make a 'feature' of them at home, then remembered I had a 2 year old daughter and 5 year old son who would take great delight in destroying them!  Anyway, I can only check in three bags into upper class on the way home...
Ye olde antique market 

From there we wandered back to the hotel and then I went straight back out with a view to getting to the top of the World Financial Centre building for sunset.  On exiting the subway you are faced with 2 (and a half) of the tallest buildings in the world right in front of you.  The Chinesey looking one is the Jin Mao tower, while the one with a giant bottle opener is the World Financial Centre. The third building being constructed is the Shanghai Tower, which apparently is going to half as tall again as the World Financial Centre.
World Financial Centre, Jin Mao & Shanghai Towers
After a bit of queue (me and fellow Europeans queueing correctly, Chinese bun fighting and barging), we got into the lift which took us up the 430 metres to the 94th floor.  From there it was an elevator up to the 97th floor and the first observatory and then another lift up to floor 100 and the 'highest observatory in the world'.
Hmmm quite high up here aern't we?

The viewing platform views are amazing, looking over both sides of the Shanghai.  There is also glass flooring that you can see the 460-odd metres straight down.  Despite the day being extremely clear (for Shanghai), there was still a pollution haze hanging over the city - bit of a pity really.  I sat down and hung around until it got dark and managed to get some cool photos, I even manged to spot our hotel!
My teeny tiny (27 storey) hotel
The Jin Mao and Oriental Pearl TV tower at dusk
I took up the tower's very kind offer to take my photo for 50 yuan as I was playing norman no mates.  After using an electrically powered toilet for the first time in my life (uppy downy, side to side, front and back washing and 'relaxing wash') and yomping my way through the obligatory souvenier shop (magnets for fridge, check), we zipped down in the double decker lift and were deposited in, the shopping and restaurant floor yay!
The two towers all lit up and looking pretty

Back to work tomorrow, only three days to go before I have the pleasure of a 14 hour flight back to the UK, wahoo!

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