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We all know and admire Liverpool’s Chinese Arch, we all know it’s the largest in Europe and was gifted to us by the city of Shanghai as a symbol of our twinning relationship. But did you know the two cities also share many similar landmarks and attractions?
As Liverpool gears up to celebrate Chinese New Year and the 20th anniversary of our twinning with China’s biggest city, we take a look at just how alike the two ports are. From the banks of the Huangpu River to the Royal Albert Dock and Zhujiajiao be warned, reading this article may lead to the booking of a holiday to Shanghai. It’s even got it’s own Disney Land!
We did a double take when we saw this photo of The Bund on Shanghai’s waterfront. The city is famed as ‘a museum of international architecture’ and the 26 colonial-era buildings that make up The Bund, prove this beautifully. Add in a Liver Bird or two and it could just as easily be Liverpool.
Okay so we have to hold our hands up and say that The Oriental Pearl Tower is every so slightly more majestic than our own St John’s Beacon. But only just. Completed in 1995, 468 metre tower offers amazing views of the city, a glass floor, an in-door rollercoaster and is China’s second tallest TV and radio tower.
The stepping stones at Sefton Park have afforded many a picture perfect setting and Yu Garden, Shanghai also does the same. Dating back to the Ming Dynasty 1368 -1644, this 20,000 acre garden boasts lots of sculptures, rockeries, carvings and more.
Shanghai is very much a modern city. At the forefront of technology, finance and of course, shopping! Nanjing Road is Shanghai’s Liverpool ONE, Church Street & Bold Street, all rolled into one. Stretching 3.4 miles, this century old street has seen phenomenal changes including an all-weather pedestrian arcade. If you love to shop, this is the place for you.
Mixing old-style Shikumen residences and more modern architecture, Xintiandi reminds us of Liverpool’s Georgian Quarter. Sitting at the heart of Shanghai city, this pedestrian street has used the old 1920’s style exterior walls to house contemporary 21st century businesses and shops.
When it comes to religion, both Liverpool and Shanghai have strong belief systems and many places of worship. Just like our stunning cathedrals, Shanghai’s Jade Buddha Temple welcomes thousands of visitors each year. Two precious jade Buddhist statues, brought from Burma, draw fascinated crowds thanks to their pure white jade carvings. A must-see on any visit to the city.
Zhujiajiao Water Village is a place of historical significance, similar to our very own and much loved Royal Albert Dock. Dating back more than 1700 years, the fan-shaped town is known as Shanghai’s Venice. Built during the Ming and Qing Dynasties, 36 individual bridges cross the streams and rivers, connecting this area of serenity with the bustling city centre beyond.
A famous Chinese saying goes “it is better to see for oneself than to hear many times” and the Museum of Shanghai is the place to do just that. Like our own Museum of Liverpool, this incredible building houses everything from ancient coins and seals to sculptures, ceramics, furniture and art. You simply cannot fail to learn something fascinating about Chinese culture here.
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