Shanghai is and has always been an international city. Since the concession era, when foreign nations held small territories withing Shanghai, the city's architecture blossomed into a diverse and beautiful kaleidoscope of art and function. From the beautiful French row houses in the French Concession, to the British-style structures along the Bund, the city's diversity has no end in the architectural world.
The Bund and the Pudong Bund are great places to start on an architecture tour of Shanghai. You'll see some of the city's most beautiful western-style buildings along the Bund, while the city's modern sky scrapers skirt along the Pudong Bund across the river. The Bund is, in its own right, an architectural highlight in Shanghai not to be missed.
In Pudong, Jin Mao Tower holds epic fame. It was the pride of the city when completed, and still garnishes city-wide respect. The massive tower has immense aesthetic value, and can be enjoyed from the Cloud 9 Bar near the summit or at the base, where its giant form remains awe-inspiring.
In Renmin Park, the Shanghai Museum is an interesting design and is recognizable from afar for its unique layout and architecture. Nearby Nanjing Road holds interesting structures including mega malls of the most modern decor nestled near old British style former row houses.
For a glimpse at the traditional Shanghai hutong homes, head to TaiKang Road, where you'll be lost in a maze of alleyways each more impressive than the last. These hutong homes were once the city's main housing option, and the community feeling in them is strong. XinTianDi, a modern take on the hutong-style design, offers a glimpse into wealth and fortune with Chinese and Western elements merged into one final design.
Religious structures in Shanghai also offer beautiful architectural sights, including the Western St. Ignatius Church and the Jade Buddha Temple.
Zhongshan South Road & Nanjing Road
Stake a boardwalk stroll along the Huangpu River, one of Shanghai's most famous sites... read more
88 Century Boulevard
An amazing piece of modern architecture... read more
Binjiang Dadao, Pudong New Area
A classy view of the Western bank... read more
201 Renmin Da Dao
People's Sq., Huangpu District
See the history of Chinese art, from Bronze galleries to Calligraphy... read more
Tai Kang Lu
Explore this converted old-style village full of classy restaurants, bars, and artistic shops... read more
Huang Pi Nan Lu
Ma Dang Lu
Shikumen Shopping & Entertainment... read more
Nanjing Central Road
Shanghai's only pedestrian walkway, lined with some of the biggest names in fashion, sports and eats... read more
Dongping Road & Hangshan Road
Explore the expat bars and eateries in the afternoon... read more
Puxi Lu 158
Xuhui (west side of Caoxi Bei Lu)
Jesuit-opened St. Ignatius Church... read more
Anyuan Lu 170
Putuo (northwest Shanghai, west of Jiangning Lu, 6 long blocks north of Beijing Xi Lu)
China's most renowned Buddhist Temple has survived since 1918... read more