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Top Rated Attractions in Shanghai

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Oriental Pearl TV Tower

At a height of 468 meters (1,535 feet), the Oriental Pearl TV Tower is the world's sixth tallest and possibly one of its most unique. Set on the banks of the Huangpu River, this stunning landmark is an intriguing silhouette of magnanimous spheres balanced on slender columns that soar high above the city streets. Each of the three largest spheres feature an observation deck that grants panoramic views of Shanghai from varying heights, while the glass-bottomed walkway promises to thrill. The Oriental Pearl TV Tower also houses shops, entertainment venues and a hotel as well as the Revolving Restaurant and the Municipal History Museum. Often likened to pearls on a string, this iconic landmark adorns Shanghai's glittering city skyline like a radiant jewel of spectacular proportions.

Plaza 66

Crane your neck to marvel at the second tallest building in Shanghai, the tallest in Jing An District and a major tourist hotspot. 945 feet tall, the magnificent structure also hosts a massive shopping center, housing some of the biggest brand names in clothing, fashion, electronics, furnishing, gifts and every imaginable household appliance. With prices as high as the structure that houses them, it's no wonder that most tourists stick to window shopping in here!

The Bund

A concrete riverfront walkway that is built around a bend on the Huangpu River, the iconic Bund is dotted with a collection of Shanghai's most monumental landmarks. A labyrinth of nearly 52 buildings of varying shapes, sizes and architectural styles – from Romanesque Revival and Baroque, to Neoclassical and Art Deco – guards the riverfront area from the rest of the city, almost like an open-air repository of structures woven together by the forces of history, culture and commerce. Influenced by the brief colonial era that settled over Shanghai before it became a trading port in 1846, behind the buildings' facade existed a slew of trading houses, banks and even consulates. Some of the most prominent buildings that line the picturesque riverfront include the HSBC Building, which once housed the Shanghai headquarters of the eponymous bank, the Russo-Chinese Bank Building, the Asia Building, the Bank of China building, and the Gutzlaff Signal Tower. While some buildings serve an official purpose even today, some others form cultural and retail hubs in this commercial city.

Huangpu River Cruise

Taking a boat tour along the Huang Pu River gives visitors an opportunity to see many of Shanghai's famous sites such as the People's Hero Monument, the Bund (Wai Tan), the Oriental Pearl TV Tower and the dramatic skyline of the Pu Dong business district. Also, in view of the river are the bustling International Passenger Station of Shanghai Harbor, the docks and the Wu Song ancient gun fort relics. Open daily 9:30am.

Shanghai Museum

This museum boasts 120,000 Chinese art pieces and archaeological findings. Permanent exhibits feature bronze, ceramics and paintings, among other artifacts. Other facilities include a library with 20,000 books, a conservation laboratory and a lecture room. There is a gift shop on the first floor, a tea house and several antique and curio stalls. The building itself is an architectural showpiece, resembling an ancient tripod when viewed sideways. The rooftop with glassed dome is modeled on a Han Dynasty mirror.

Shanghai Grand Theater

The Shanghai Grand Theatre is a magnificent addition to the city's arts and culture scene. On the northwest side of the busy People's Square, this architecturally striking and modern theater, hosts major international concerts and performances. It has played host to the Russian Kirov Ballet and the British Royal Philharmonic Orchestra. Visitors can buy a ticket to tour the building, however, they would do better to purchase a ticket for a performance and have a look around for free.

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