Exploring Shanghai’s Old City: Yuyuan Garden & Bazaar

Tucked away in the east of Puxi are the remnants of Shanghai’s Old City, which has a sense of history among its narrow alleyways, temples and markets. Burn incense with the locals in small temples, sip tea in the teahouse, or get a taste of Chinese snacks, this is the place to get a feeling for Shanghai’s past.

Yuyuan Garden Shanghai Yuyuan Garden

First built during the Ming Dynasty, 400 years ago, Yuyuan Garden it is a classical Chinese garden and one of Shanghai’s premier sights, featuring ponds, walkways, bridges and rockeries. The spring and summer blossoms bring a fragrant and floral aspect to the garden. During the Lantern Festival on the fifteenth day of the traditional New Year, ten thousands of lanterns (and an even larger number of spectators) brighten up the garden.

Add: 218 Anren Rd.

Opening Hours: 8:30-17:00

Yuyuan Commercial City Shanghai Yuyuan Commercial City

The area consists of the famous classical garden in south China Yuyuan Garden, the “kingdom of small articles of daily use”, and the “kingdom of delicacies”. There you will find the Old City God Temple, and the historical relic temple of Chengxiangge. A large number of rebuilt Ming and Qing dynasty-style buildings, together with the Nine-cornered Zigzag Bridge, Mid-lake Pavilion and Lotus Pond form an attractive scene for tourists. When night falls and light is on, the area is attracting visitors with its glistening beauty.

Add: Fangbang Rd.(M), Shanghai

Old City God Temple Old City God Temple of Shanghai

First built in the year of Yongle of the Ming Dynasty (1403), it is a major Taoist temple in Shanghai. In the temple are enshrined the City God Qin Yubo and General Huoguang. It was very popular during the Qing Dynasty.

Add: Fangbang Rd.(M), Shanghai

Opening Hours: 8: 30-16: 30 every day, 6: 00-16:30 on the lst and 15th day of the Lunar month 16:30

Shanghai Old Street Shanghai Old Street

The 825-m long Old Street runs from Renmin Rd. to Henan Rd.. It is an important thoroughfare for visiting the Yuyuan commercial area. In old Shanghai here were found the private banks, gold shops, jewelry stores, wine shops, tea houses, theatres, and other firms, usually called the center of all trades in Shanghai. Here, now, we can find some of the traditional trades like a coin store, old-fashioned tea houses, a shop selling mahogany decorative articles, a pawn shop, a wine shop and a private bank.


  • This area could take a very long afternoon or morning, as it’s a good one to do on foot. Much of the fun is just to wander through the lanes.
  • The area is fun to see at night. All the eaves of the buildings are lit up and you can get some nice photos.

Getting There:

Best to take a taxi. Many of the streets are one-way or blocked on weekends. The taxi will drop you in the area and then you can wander around. You’ll know you’re in the right place when you see classical Chinese architecture.

Read more:

Discovering the Bund

Shikumen: Witness of the Everyday Life of Ordinary Shanghai People

Zhujiajiao Water Town

Fengjing Ancient Town

Qibao Ancient Town

Xinchang: The Last Ancient Watertown around Shanghai

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