The Bund (literally means "Outer Beach") is a waterfront area that lies north of the Old Town of Shanghai. It's one of the most famous scenic spots and a must-see place for tourists in this international city. This stately street is famous for old colonial-era buildings, dozens of historical buildings there once housed numerous banks, trading houses, consulates and newspapers from the UK, France, the US, Russia and many other countries.
Zhongshan Road is the central area of the Bund with the former Shanghai International Settlement. Along the Huangpu River, the Bund once was the financial center of the Far East. It’s no wonder that different styles of European buildings can be found there. With 52 buildings of diverse architectural styles, this dazzling area is called "the Museum of Buildings". It has become more attractive nowadays because you can have an excellent view of modern skyscrapers in the Pudong District which are just opposite the Huangpu River. The tremendous contrast between old and modern areas forms the skyline of this fast-changing city.
Customs House, an eight-story structure that was built in 1927, is one of the symbols of the Bund. It’s famous for a clock tower called "Big Ching", and it remains a customs house today.
On the south of the clock tower stands the HSBC Building, the grandest building on the Bund. The two magnificent buildings were designed by the same architect. It was the home to the Hong Kong and Shanghai Banking Corporation, but now Pudong Development Bank is its new host.
Located at the northern end of the Bund, Huangpu Park is the oldest and smallest park in the city. You can have a visit to The Bund Historical Museum in it.
For leisure and sightseeing, a three-hour cruise on the Huangpu River is available and worth it. If you have a tight schedule, you can also find one-hour or two-hour cruises at the southern ferry port.
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