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28/04/2013

8 strangest Shanghai museums II

Shanghai Postal Museum

Admission: Free

Why it's odd but awesome: The museum itself is almost as compelling as its contents: it’s housed in a colonial-era post office, with a majestic glass atrium. The carefully-laid out displays detail the stories of the early post scouts, showcase tortoise shells and bamboo with inscribed messages, and include clay seals that ensured mail privacy.

But, according to one security guard, the best part is the rooftop deck: “It’s a great view, from the Bund to Lujiazui,” he says. The deck will reopen in the spring of 2011.

Don't leave without seeing: Yellowed letters postmarked from the former concessions which is one of popular attractions in Shanghai for your China travel deals.

Shanghai Museum of Public Security

Admission price: RMB 8

Why it's odd but awesome: This expansive museum -- which contains 8,000 items -- follows the history of China’s public security forces from the mid-19th century to the present.

Visitors who join China vacation packageswander through the spacious halls past wax figurines of diverse patrol officers: Indians, British and Chinese. There’s everything from badges and uniforms to propaganda posters and full-sized emergency vehicles.

Don't leave without seeing: Sun Yat-sen’s personal sidearm.

Shanghai Museum of Public Security, 518 Ruijin Nan Lu, near Xietu Lu, +86 21 6472 0256, hours: Monday to Saturday, 9 a.m. to 4 p.m.

Shanghai Jewish Refugees Museum

Admission: RMB 50 (adults)

Why it's odd but awesome: This museum is housed in the former Ohel Moshe synagogue, which Russian Jews built in 1927. The original place of worship is on the first floor, while the upper floors showcase Jewish-related artwork. There’s also a searchable database of Jews who lived in Shanghai.

The best part is the exterior exhibition halls which detail the personal stories of escape and sanctuary during Wold War II.

“I’m proud of the history in our district,” says Hongkou resident Miley Yin, a volunteer tour guide and college student.

Don't leave without seeing: The story of one Jewish man’s lost Shanghai love, a woman named "Ms. Wong." Apparently, Wong left him for someone whom she thought was a foreign oil executive, only to find that man just owned a Texas gas station.

If you want to know more, you can contact with China tour agents.

09:34 Publié dans Voyage | Lien permanent | Commentaires (0)

8 strangest Shanghai museums I

Shanghai hosts all the museums you’d expect in a world-class city: countless art spaces, history exhibitions and urban planning centers. But, if you explore a little more, you’ll find that the city has its share of odder exhibition halls. You can pick up any one of them for your affordable China travel packages.

From a scrappy chopstick center to an elegant homage to music boxes, the city brims with unexpected entertainments. Here are our picks of the city’s most unusual museums.

Shanghai Typewriter Museum

Admission: Free

Why it's odd but awesome: When small children enter this tiny typewriter museum, they’re often perplexed by the 50 machines on display.

“I tell them, this is the computer’s grandfather,” says curator Han Tao Feng. Foreigners are often touched to find antique typewriters from their home countries, she adds.

The 300 typewriters were collected by Suzhou-born Lu Hanbin, an international merchant who now lives in the Czech Republic.

Don't leave without seeing: The oldest typewriter: a redwood beauty from 1809.

Shanghai Typewriter Museum, 248 Wuxing Lu, near Jianguo Lu, +86 21 6466 4556, hours: daily, 10 a.m. to 10 p.m.

Shanghai Animation and Comics Museum

Admission: RMB 30 (adults)

Why it's odd but awesome: This shiny, futuristic homage to animation opened in 2010.

The first floor is an entrancing guide to animation’s history, from Chinese shadow puppets to Mickey Mouse. It's interspersed with life-size figurines, short film clips and a hall of movie posters. The second-floor is kid-friendly and commercial -- you can even dub your voice into popular cartoon flicks.

Don't leave without seeing: The top floor is a movie theater: separate tickets required.

Shanghai Animation and Comics Museum, 69 Zhangjiang Lu, a cab ride from Jinke station on Metro Line 2 , +86 5895 7998, hours: Tuesday to Saturday, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Shanghai Antique Music Box Gallery

Admission: RMB 50 (adults), half price every first and third Saturday of the month

Why it's odd but awesome: The personal collection of a Japanese merchant, this museum is filled with mostly European music boxes.

“I wanted to come because it’s romantic and fun,” says Cherry Ding, a Shanghai high school student.

The most interesting music boxes are the ones with doll figurines that spring to life in time with the music. One features a young boy who tries to steal some jam, only to see the jar turn into his grandmother’s scolding face. Another creepier one displays a woman stewing a monkey’s head.

Don't leave without seeing: The oldest music box in the world: a tiny golden contraption dating from 1796.

Shanghai Antique Music Box Gallery, 425 Dingxiang Lu, Shanghai Oriental Arts Center which should be considered for your best tours of China, near Yingchun Lu, Metro Line 2 Science and Technology Museum Station +86 21 6854 7647, hours: daily 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Chopsticks Museum

Admission: Free

Why it's odd but awesome: This tiny, cold room, shared with a jewelry saleswoman, is perhaps the smallest museum in Shanghai.

Lan Xiang, 81, lives upstairs and displays his collections of chopsticks in a first-floor cabinet.

As a young man, Xiang, a writer, traveled throughout Asia in search of chopsticks. If you speak Putonghua, he’ll tell you the story of his quest to collect more than 2,000 pairs including a gilded silver set from the Tang Dynasty.

There aren’t many on display though: “My best ones are in the bank,” Xiang says. But, his story alone is worth a visit.

Don't leave without seeing: Xiang's book “Chinese Chopsticks,” which is avalable in Chinese, English and French.

Chopsticks Museum, 191 Duolun Lu, near Sichuan Lu, Metro Line 3 Dongbaoxing Lu Staion +86 21 5671 7528, hours: daily, call ahead for appointment

Shanghai Calligraphy Museum

Admission: Free

Why it's odd but awesome: This one-room museum begins with the history of ink-making, and tells the story of its migration to Shanghai. Glass exhibits showcase various ink pads and brushes while wall scrolls illustrate the beauty of the calligraphy.

“What I loved was just the fact that they had such a museum in the first place,” says Shahana Chattaraj, who was visiting Shanghai from New York. “It shows such a reverence for writing, and the written script as an art form.”

Don't leave without seeing: English recordings next to the exhibits tell the stories behind the artifacts, such as juicy tales of competition among ink makers.

Shanghai Calligraphy Museum, 2/F, 429 Fuzhou Lu, near Fujian Zhong Lu, +86 21 6328 1558, hours: daily 9:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m.

If you want to know more, you can contact with China tour agents.

09:30 Publié dans Voyage | Lien permanent | Commentaires (0)

27/04/2013

How to find a great escape in the Great Wall

Hikes along the Great Wall are a relatively simple option, easily accessible from Beijing, and can be done leisurely over several days or in a power-trek over just one or two days.

We geared up for the Gubeikou section of the Great Wall in Miyun County, about two hours north of Beijing which is an indispensible destination for last minute China travel deals.

We hiked to four Ming watchtowers on the peaks of rigid hills where we set up camp in a windy tower, downed a few Stella beers and enjoyed the expansive views.

"Checking in" at the Great Wall at Gubeikou. Equipment and camping gear is strewn about. Sleeping, or trying to sleep, in a watchtower is rough. The two-hour hike along rigid peaks to reach the watchtower was no easy task. Now this is a view worth hiking all day for. We hiked uphill through muddy trails overgrown with trees and lilac bushes to three more watchtowers. Still standing strong and looking remarkably solid even after all these years. The view seemed endless. We counted 15 watchtowers on the hilltops around us.

A final look out from the Gubeikou tower window before we departed.

Camping the Great Wall of China

It isn't as difficult to camp the Great Wall as one might think. A quick Google search finds a plethora of companies offering hikes and camping China tours.

Mountain Biking Asia leads a five-day, 40-kilometer trek in Hebei province (from US$2,000 per person).

China Adventure Tours runs hikes ranging from one to 24 days (US$74 to US$3,200+ per person). Or you can go it alone.

A 10-kilometer stretch between Jinshanling and Simatai is a popular section for hiking, and Huanghuacheng and Mutianyu also have sections of well-preserved wild Wall.

Beijing taxis will take you to the wall for about US$70 round trip. Bring plenty of food and water, a flashlight for each person (we learned this the hard way), and toilet paper (missing a flashlight makes things in this area, uh, difficult).

Designate a group toilet, most definitely not in the tower.

Rules and regulations about hiking and camping on the Wild Wall are murky. Technically, Beijing Municipality limits access to parts of the wall not designated tourist areas (Hebei province does not), but rules are rarely enforced. Graffiti, removing bricks and littering are all illegal.

Also, be respectful of your surroundings and don't act like idiots if you choose to camp on (or in) a historic site like the Great Wall of China which is always contained in popular China travel package.

10:05 Publié dans Voyage | Lien permanent | Commentaires (0)