I was invited by Spring Airlines to find out My Shanghai Story along with a bunch of other bloggers to a cold and rainy Shanghai. After boarding the Metro, getting a little lost, asking a friendly local for directions later, we arrived at 1933 Shanghai before moving on to the DuoLun Famous Cultural People Street for lunch and the Yu Yuan Gardens to see what the hype was all about.
Even before I got to Shanghai, I was very fascinated with their ‘Ancient Water Town’ as the guide-book touts. They speak of old architectures and tea houses next to beautiful water canals!
The water towns are quite far away from town but thankfully despite the tight schedule, I managed to squeeze traveling to 七宝 Qi Bao on the very next morning of my trip!
Qi Bao is one of the nearest water town from the city centre; about a 20 minutes ride in the taxi.
It was a small town that prospered during the Ming and Qing dynasty while it is a popular tourist spot in its modern incarnation.
Lined with tea houses, historical museums, shops and busy alley ways for the adventurous to explore, there is something for everyone at Qi Bao.
There are 9 official ‘attractions’ in Qi Bao which are basically mini museums like a cricket museum; shadow puppet museum, Zhou’s miniature carving house; just to name a few.
The admission fee is 5RMB for one attraction and 45RMB for an all entry ticket.
Although I found that the streets of Qi Bao is enough to keep me occupied for the entire day even without the museums.
If you managed to block out the crowd of people, you do get a sense that you have been transported back into ancient China.
Or at the very least, a movie set.
There is also a ‘water taxi’ or a boat ride that you can take for 10RMB which gives you a tour of the town.
It is a rather unusual perspective and good way to get around town so do give the boat ride a try!
When you move to the North of the town, that is when things get exciting as that is where the popular food street is located!
It is also the reason why everyone visits this place.
It was really hard to photograph this street due to the sheer amount of people pushing and shoving but I managed to get some shots of the vendors!
This shop, selling pig’s trotters really caught my attention as there is so much going on visually.
Then again as a pescaterian, it really tugged at my heartstrings to see so much meat and possibly wastage!
Qi Bao is located at: Street 2 Minzhu Rd, Mǐnháng district; 闵行区民主路2号 (Qibao Metro Line 9)