Many foreigners may know Shanghai (and other Chinese cities) mostly by the faded pictures of China's past with its traditional tile-roofed buildings, shared toilets and simple rooms that seem more closely aligned with opium dens than modern-living.
Of course, today, Shanghai is a modern city with huge malls, some of the world's tallest buildings and cutting edge homes. While most of this remembered past is quickly fading away with China's momentum to pave a way to the future, pockets of this amazing history do exist
and are just minutes away from central Shanghai. Exploring areas behind some of the most bustling streets you can still find homes that are over 100 years old along with their layered history of pipes, wires and "updates" that coat the area in attempts to keep them up to date.
Unfortunately, many of the rows of these historic, traditional buildings and homes have over 90% of their doors and windows already bricked, blocked or plywooded in preparation for their destiny of being razed as soon as the last resident departs. Other homes have the mark of "please board me up" ready to go as soon as the home owner gives in to the government's incentives to move.
If you have an interest in this past, we recommend a walking tour or bike tour that takes you down some of these backstreets of old Shanghai. This allows you to step in these historic homes and hear the stories of the locals that still live there. A truly memorable experience that won't be available soon. Learn more about our Backstreets of Old Shanghai Bike Tour.
We hope to see you in Shanghai soon and would love to share this amazing experience with you.
While China has cracked down a lot on imitations of famous brands, there are still many bargains to be had on great products at Shanghai's "copy market" such as the one Inside metro Line 2's, Shanghai Science & Technology Museum, 2000 Shiji Da Dao, near Yingchun Lu.
Of course, you must negotiate to get the deals!
If you've been to one of these markets, you are very familiar with the process. You casually find something that catches your eye. Your interest piques until you finally ask, "How much is this?" The sales person nicely pulls out a calculator, enters the price and shows it to you with some reinforcement of "best price for you," "great price for this quality," etc. From here the fun begins.
The amount of negotiation you can do is very dependent on several factors such as how many you want, the type of product and even the time of day. I won't try to give a detailed account of how much discount you can expect for every factor, but good negotiation comes down to some very simple practices:
If you want to try your hand at negotiating at these hectic markets, we're always happy to include it in your tour!
Happy shopping and we hope to see you in Shanghai soon!
Jenny is a professional tour operator in Shanghai, China. She provides custom English-spoken tours to visitors from all over the world.
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