The Bund, the best area to stay in Shanghai
The Bund is beautifully set by the Huangpu River, which runs throughout the city and the majority of visitors head straight down to the riverside promenade to get their first look of Shanghai. What greets them is a wonderfully made walking area that offers the best views of the city with ample photo opportunities all along it. One way you can look at the financial district of Pudong, which is across the river and is full of skyscrapers and high-rise buildings but is a mesmerising sight. When you look towards the Bund, you will walk past various old colonial buildings that are designed in different European styles and are lit up elegantly during the night. Main buildings to look out for along the Bund, is the HSBC Building and the Customs House and both stick out due to their height and are seen as symbols of the area.
If you walk to the south of the Bund, you will eventually arrive at the ferry port and from here you can either take a river cruise along the river that can vary in length but have a maximum of three hours. You can also take the ferry to get to the other side of the river where the Pudong district is located. To the north of the Bund is the Huangpu Park, which is superbly laid out and serves as a great place to relax and have some lunch, whilst seeing the crazy world go by.
There are also a couple of museums in the area with the Art Museum in the north, which has a great collection of Chinese art from regional as well as national artists. The Natural History Museum is found in the south and has many artefacts and objects from the city and you should allow a few hours to see it all. There are a good amount of shops in the area that combine modern and traditional Chinese fashion and various garments like handbags, shoes, and hand-embroidered clothing can be purchased.
There are a good amount of restaurants along the promenade as well as behind the first street and they have Chinese, American and other western cuisines and it is worth checking out Number 3 and 18 along the waterfront. These two have huge flagship stores like Armani, Gucci and Chanel as well as having highly-rated bars and some of the best food.
The Bund is home to a huge number of hotels and most of them have staff that can speak English. The hotels along the promenade obviously have the best views but if it’s in your budget try the Peace Hotel, which is one of Shanghai’s most prized possessions due to its famous 1930s Art Deco and has been renovated inside and outside to the origins. Bars and pubs dot the waterfront and Bar Rouge has a massive dance floor and even has a rooftop terrace that overlooks the river beneath you.