How to Start Your Tour of China

China is a country with rich history and culture, and it’s certainly worth a visit. But where to start to get the most of your first tour? We recommend choosing Shanghai, China’s biggest city, and the neighbouring province of Jiangsu.

Let’s start with Shanghai. The city is huge, but you should put two places on your list: the Bund and Tianzifang. There you’ll experience both the hi-tech modernity and the cultural heritage of China.

The Bund means “embankment”, and it’s an observation area by the Huangpu River. From there, you can see the neon-lit skyscraper line, which has become the symbol of the city. Pay a visit to the Bund after dark to enjoy the lights. During the day, start your sightseeing tour with the HSBC bank building, previously the seat of the colonial government. Erected by the British in the 1920s, it boasts a neo-classicist design, impressive pillars and mosaic murals.

Tianzifang market offers arts and crafts as well as food stalls. It’s a great place for buying handmade goods (fans, silk items and so on). You can visit cafes, noodle shops and various vendors serving plenty of food: meat skewers, original desserts, etc.

As for Jiangsu, an exciting place to visit is Nanjing, the province capital. It’s a cultural and historic landmark, as well as a college city filled with youth. Here’s what you can see and experience there...

The City Wall. Constructed in the 14th century, it’s a 46-feet thick structure stretching for 13 miles, which hosts tea ceremonies as well as workshops in fan painting. Explore the top of this magnificent structure on foot at the Gate of China.

Purple Mountain. Ming tombs, popular with tourists visiting Beijing, are represented here by the first tomb of the Ming dynasty. It’s located in the mountain foothills (Purple Mountain also houses the tomb of the first president of China). The long pathways to the Ming Xiaoling Mausoleum are lined with sculptures portraying the exotic work animals of the Silk Road.