Old Jiading: A Shanghai day trip without the crowds from freemexy's blog

During the Southern Song Dynasty (1127-1279), a time when historic Shanghai barely existed, Jiading was already a flourishing town. Today Jiading District, located in northwestern Shanghai, is well-known as an industrial zone. But the picturesque ancient town, with canals, stone bridges and a pagoda, remains a relative secret Shanghai day trip to both tourists and city dwellers.To get more Jiading District news, you can visit shine news official website.

Conveniently located at the end of Line 11, it is a tranquil spot to spend an afternoon before the weather cools down too much. Jiading is home to one of the best-preserved Confucian temples in the country. Built in 1219, Jiading Confucius Temple shares a space with the old Confucian academy.Three bridges adorned with small stone lions lead into the garden where the main hall is situated. In the center of the hall sits a large statue of Confucius, flanked by displays of writings and musical instruments.

On either side of the hall are racks containing letters to Confucius, which are handwritten by students (and occasionally an anxious parent) asking for his blessing during the exam period. The Shanghai Chinese Imperial Examinations Museum next door traces in detail the history of the imperial examinations system, which was used to select government officials and played a profound part in Chinese life and culture during its 1,300 years of existence.
Adjacent to the temple grounds is the 400-year-old Huilongtan Pond (literally “pond where dragons meet”), which is connected to a quiet park featuring stone hills, pavilions, and even a working opera stage. A block away from the temple, you’ll find Suzhou-esque bridges and canals lined with houses sporting traditional black-tiled roofs and wooden shutters, with only air-conditioning units to spoil the view. Squeeze your way up the narrow steps and ladders to the top of the seven-story Fahua Pagoda for a view of the ancient town and beyond.

Built in the center of town between 1205 and 1207 and reconstructed many times since, it is now a government-protected cultural relic.Mind your head: the doorways, too, were designed 800 years ago, when people were apparently much shorter.Then take a leisurely stroll along the Old Street, several pedestrian-only blocks of shops and eateries.Despite the obligatory red lanterns, the area has much less of a touristy feel than Shanghai day tips to other old towns of Qibao and Zhujiajiao.

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