When learning of Shanghai’s past you’ll often hear the words colorful, scandalous, glamourous and decadent. Spend some time in the city and it’s no wonder why it was referred to a “Paris of the East”. Once upon a time foreign governments were given areas of land to build and enforce laws as they saw fit. These areas were referred to as concessions.
These days, residents and visitors will tell you that Shanghai is a city of unending construction, bustling pedestrians, a sea of motorists and a rapidly growing economy. All of this makes Shanghai one fabulous city.
Over the next several days, I’m sharing my favorite places and tips. If you’d like to do some additional reading, these are my recommended texts:
Smart Shanghai (Website)
This website has an interactive map as well as information on restaurant, bars and events.
Shanghai Expat (Website)
This website’s main audience are foreigners living in Shanghai. The website is full of forums and user feedback on everything from restaurants to tailors.
English-language newspaper published in Shanghai.
Life and Death in Shanghai by Nien Cheng
A memoir that has been widely regarded as one of the most riveting accounts of the Cultural Revolution.
Lonely Planet’s Shanghai City Guide
Like most guidebooks that are written in English this provides information through the eyes of a foreigner. For example, the guidebook continually refers to the “French Concession” though this area no longer exists and is never used by Shanghainese as it references a time of foreign occupation. Dining recommendations are sparse missing some of Shanghai’s more authentic, best restaurants. All that being said, I found it to be one of the better “Western” guides.